Rosalía has always been a beauty girl, opting to do her own stage makeup from the age of 16 because she couldn’t afford a makeup artist. The now-28 year old Spanish musician has since carved out a distinct beauty aesthetic — red lips, full waves, and nails that double as an extension of her wardrobe.
It was this signature that led her to collaborate with MAC Cosmetics back in 2020 to create a limited red lipstick as part of the Viva Glam collection, but now the singer has released a complete 16-piece collection — called Aute Couture — including products like ‘the perfect red lipstick’ (Rusi Woo) shimmering highlighter palettes and a selection of nail lacquers and decals (MAC’s first nail release in years).
Here, GRAZIA spoke exclusively to Rosalía on the process behind the collaboration, her approach to beauty, and how nail art inspires her performance.
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GRAZIA: Congratulations on the collaboration with M·A·C. What does the partnership mean to you?
ROSALÍA: Thank you so much! I was really excited because this is the first time I’ve had my own makeup collection. It means even more that it’s in collaboration with M.A.C — a brand I’ve always loved. The collection is called Aute Cuture, after the name of a song I wrote two years ago that draws inspiration from the glamour of the fashion world. Also, he name of that song is written incorrectly on purpose because at the end of the day, I love this world, but it’s important that I do it on my own terms.
GRAZIA: WHAT IS IT ABOUT M.A.C THAT RESONATES WITH YOU?
ROSALÍA: M·A·C is such a well known brand! I’ll never forget their iconic campaigns with Lil Kim or Rossy de Palma that I’ve seen over the years. I’ve always felt an affinity towards the brand for its inclusiveness, diversity and the way they advocate for minorities. I’ve actually followed their work with the Viva Glam campaign since I was a teenager.
GRAZIA: Talk me through the nail shades and decorations — what was the creative process like?
ROSALÍA: It was such a fun process. I loved choosing the textures, working on the nail polish design (the shape is actually inspired by a lollypop) and putting together the color palette. As for the shades, I wanted them to feel Earthy and comforting — my grandpa used to work a lot in the fields and I would spend a lot of time there as a kid. I love nature, and it’s definitely shaped my attraction to certain colors.
And of course there’s red! In flamenco tradition, red is such a powerful and important color, it’s always been a huge inspiration for me. And finally gold, because it’s beautiful and I’ve always been obsessed with gold jewellery, especially my mother’s.
GRAZIA: M·A·C has so many iconic products, can you share a personal favorite?
ROSALÍA: My favorite M.A.C product has always been Ruby Woo, but now it’s Rusi Woo! Ha ha! Since I was a teenager I’ve been wearing Ruby Woo, so to have Rusi Woo as a part of this collection is honestly mind blowing to me. I used to do my makeup before every show since I was 16, because I couldn’t afford a makeup artist. But the habit lasted for years, and honestly I’m grateful for it because I learnt so much about makeup, how it works and how it makes me feel.
GRAZIA: YOU’RE KNOWN ON INSTAGRAM FOR YOUR INSANE MANICURES. What’s the process like when it comes to choosing a new design?
ROSALÍA: It usually depends on what I’m going to do, but the concepts for my designs can come from any old place! In my day to day life when I’m recording and working in the studio, I need short nails so I can play instruments and work on the computer really quickly (hi, Pro Tools) so I’ll normally go for something short with a little drawing or image.
But maybe if I have a dinner or event and want to elevate the look a little bit, I might put shiny stickers on my nails (sometimes, I prefer it to jewellery). However, if I’m performing, I’ll wear extremely long nails — the longest I can go. It really changes the way I move and dance on stage — that’s how powerful intricate nail art is to me.
GRAZIA: When it comes to beauty in general, what’s your approach? Are you curated or experimental?
ROSALÍA: I think I really enjoy things that might not be consider considered traditionally ‘pretty’. When I wear something like grills or a unibrow I feel very strong — and this is a very personal opinion but I think there’s a correlation between strength and beauty. Also, as a musician I love experimenting and that drive I have for discovering new things is often translated to many other disciplines, not only my music.
GRAZIA: ANY PRE-SHOW RITUALS YOU SWEAR BY?
ROSALÍA: Making the glam team laugh for a lil’ bit so that the energy stays high and everything stays tuned. It’s necessary!
grazia: What makeup look do you call on when you want to feel powerful?
ROSALÍA: I tent to instinctively over-line my lips and reshape my eyebrows, making them all square and bushy. But I’m always trying new things because that usually renews my energy and makes me feel inspired to create and perform better — which is the ultimate goal.
EXPLORE THE COLLECTION
MAC x Rosalía Aute Cuture Nail Lacquer in anis