Kerry Washington Spills All the Details About her New Makeup Palettes with Neutrogena

Shop the star's palettes at Ulta right now

Kerry Washington is about to shake up your makeup game.

The brand ambassador and creative consultant for Neutrogena since 2013 is launching her very first palettes. The Neutrogena Essential Eye Palette by Kerry Washington (below, left) contains five neutral shades with a built-in primer to prevent creasing and ensure up to 12 hours of wear, while the Neutrogena Essential Cheek Palette by Kerry Washington (below, right) includes a dermatoligist-tested blush, bronzer and highlighter. Both palettes are available exclusively at


The actress and makeup maven was involved in every step of the process, from working with R&D on perfecting every shade to creating meaningful names for each (such as Captivating, Confident and Grateful) as well.

“Beauty — for me — is not just about how we look, it really is about who we are. So I wanted the names in both palettes to reflect who we are on the inside, the qualities that make us shine bright. Because, our makeup should do that. It should reveal those inner qualities,” she tells PeopleStyle exclusively.

And Washington made the experience of crafting each compact even more personal by adding her signature to the top of the packaging.

The star says it was a conference where she and the “incredible, driven” women she was spending time with unanimously agreed: “Beauty doesn’t have to be complicated.”

“It should feel like a bit of luxury in your life, but it shouldn’t be hard. That’s where the idea of the Essential palettes comes from: It’s something that you can put in your purse and know that you’ve got what you need.”

And today, the actress, beauty guru and mom of two is making her mark on makeup for women, who like herself, are always on the go.


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Washington reveals that as she set out to create hues that every women would find a use for, she wore the colors everywhere from the Scandal set to the red carpet. In fact, her makeup artist Carola Gonzalez applied both palettes to create Washington’s fresh and flirty beauty look for the Vanity Fair Oscar party (above).

2018 Vanity Fair Oscar Party Hosted By Radhika Jones - Arrivals
Jon Kopaloff/WireImage

The pro tells PeopleStyle that she used the blush shade Captivating “on the apples of her cheeks, blending upward towards the temples, then highlighted her cheekbones and the bridge of her nose with Elegant.” Next Gonzalez created a smoky eye by blending the dark brown eye shadow shade Powerful “all over the eyelid and lower lash line.”

Says Washington: “I have been playing with the colors for a long time and I’m really proud of them because you do have just what you need. It speaks to the name Essential, for sure.”


The launch signifies another makeup milestone for Washington, who in 2016 helped the brand expand their foundation shades (an undertaking that took two years to complete). Washington wouldn’t have her hands-on role any other way.

“I love being an ambassador for the company, but I really love being a creative consultant because I get to interact with our product from beginning to end and I get to meet everybody along the way who makes the product a success.”

Order a palette today (the eye palette will retail for $12.99, while the cheek palette will retail for $9.99) or pick one up in Ulta stores on April 22.

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