#ImperfectlySustainable with @riituu

Meet @riituu, a beauty content creator from Florida! Ritu is an incredible makeup artist with a love for beauty and culture, and we think all of you will love her as much as we do! #ImperfectlySustainable 

Tell us more about how you got started!

I started my Instagram honestly as a personal account and always have been really passionate about makeup and beauty. In the past, I always wanted to be more creative and consistent about sharing my looks and tips on makeup. This year I just thought, if not now then when? I took the plunge in doing that and I've met so many amazing creatives through my account so I'm happy I did!

What is the focus of your Instagram account?

The focus of my account is really on self expression and creativity through beauty. I love how creative you can be with makeup and how many different ways you can use it. It's almost overwhelming sometimes so I started keeping a list of ideas and inspo for looks! I want my account to be a space of expression and inspiration for my followers to see that there are no rules in makeup!

Have you always been interested in beauty?

I loved makeup from a really young age and used to beg my mom to put lipstick and eyeliner on me. I started playing around with colors and styles in middle school and basically taught myself by seeing what I liked and didn't like on my face. Almost 10 years later I'm still exploring all the different avenues of makeup and learning new techniques and ways to use makeup!

What are some of your beauty and skincare essentials?

My must-have beauty essentials have to be a good primer, a super colorful, rainbow eyeshadow palette, and some water activated liners. Obviously I could go on and on about fun things to have in your collection, but with those three, you really have so much room to express yourself! My skincare essential item is just a really good hydrating cleanser. With the amount of makeup I have on my skin, it's so important to really get it all out of my pores at the end of the day.

What are some of your favorite beauty trends?

My current favorite beauty trends are probably soap brows and Euphoria makeup! I love how natural fluffy brows look, and all the rhinestones, sparkles, and graphic liner are so fun to see! I think 2020 has definitely been the year of exploration and creativity in the makeup department!

When do you feel the most confident?

I feel most confident when I feel 100% myself. I used to try and tone down my makeup and do more natural looks (which I still love, don't get me wrong), but now I don't feel uncomfortable being the maximalist in the room and I love sharing that side of my personality through my looks. My 'Me looks' usually include multiple textures (rhinestones, foils, liners, shadows), a lot of color and a pop of Desi culture!

Why has it been important for you to showcase your Indian heritage as well?

I feel like growing up in the US, culture was something confusing to me and I sometimes felt uncomfortable expressing my culture as a minority. As I got older and learned more and more about my Indian background, I found it so beautiful and rich and, more than anything, I'm proud that I can identify and be a part of it. I love drawing on my family traditions, festivals and culture to express my identity through my makeup looks! The imagery of Desi traditions is so intricate and easy to find inspiration in, so I love incorporating that.

Aside from your culture, what else inspires you?

I think aside from my culture being a huge inspiration, I love drawing inspiration from nature, my mood, TV shows, and even just what I'm wearing that day. The community of MUAs on Instagram is also such a great place to feel inspired and motivated to create. I try to create something totally different than the day before which keeps me on my toes too.

How do you stay motivated when it comes to creating content?

Creating content can get stressful at times but the best part to me is pushing my boundaries and making my childhood self proud! I love the feeling after finishing a look and falling in love with the details of it. I think I would've loved seeing all the creativity, colors and different styles growing up and seeing that I don't have to put myself in a box when expressing myself. Coloring outside the lines is okay! I think we should all do it more often!

How do you try to incorporate sustainability into your account and more broadly your lifestyle?

Beyond the obvious "always recycle", I try to hygienically reuse things as much as possible! I'll take extra time to cleanse my lashes, brushes and rhinestones so I can reuse them instead of purchasing new products. I also try to upcycle product packaging for other things, like holding my brushes or organizing my products. I love researching the brands I purchase from and seeing what impacts and initiatives they have towards sustainability, which seems extensive, but a lot of beauty companies are making efforts towards reducing waste and packaging!

What challenges have you faced on your sustainability journey?

The biggest challenge for me is not being in control of the start-to-finish sustainability journey. Sometimes it feels like we can do all these little things and bigger controlling bodies can invalidate those efforts further along the line.

One of my other personal sustainability challenges honestly is that I'm so eager to try new products that I tend to over-purchase and then have an excess of things to use in my vanity. To counter that, I've started reviewing what I have already while making a purchase so that I don't add products I probably don't need.

Any advice for others who are trying to be more mindful of their sustainability?

My advice to others looking to be more sustainable/minimal in their skincare or beauty routine is to not undervalue your efforts and baby steps because one of the biggest obstacles we face is stepping off the starting line!

Make a list of your essentials and after you have those products, try to limit yourself to only two or three extras to play with as to reduce waste and excess. Another trick is to look for products that are sustainability-friendly in their packaging and formulation! I love that booni doon has completely recyclable packaging with no waste.

What's the best piece of advice you've ever been given?

I think the best piece of advice I've gotten is to create for myself and be more concerned about what I think of my work than what others do or the numbers on Instagram. It's SO easy to get caught up in others' opinions but the only one that matters is your own! I still struggle with this at times but repeating that advice helps me a lot when I feel unmotivated.

Ritu's #ImperfectlySustainable Interview