PEOPLE caught up with Kristin Cavallari ahead of the launch of her new Uncommon Beauty line, dropping May 13

By Morgan M. Evans
April 30, 2021 02:44 PM
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Kristin Cavallari Uncommon Beauty
Credit: Courtesy Uncommon Beauty

The challenges of 2020 have brought out the best in Kristin Cavallari.

Like many, Cavallari, 34, used the craziness of last year amid the COVID-19 pandemic as a time of reflection — allowing her to focus more on family, her own happiness and on growing her businesses.

The Very Cavallari star is adding a new line to her Uncommon James brand (which currently includes jewelry, home and childrenswear) with Uncommon Beauty, dropping May 13. To learn more about the new launch, PEOPLE caught up with the star to chat all-things skincare, clean beauty and how she found "peace" with her life after one of her "craziest" years.

"It's so interesting because I feel like 2020 was one of the worst years — well, I don't know that I'd say worse — but craziest years of my life in the sense of everybody else, just everything that we went through.... But also, it was one of the best years of my life, too," Cavallari tells PEOPLE.

Kristin Cavallari Uncommon Beauty
Credit: Courtesy Uncommon Beauty

"I had really sad moments, but ultimately, I'm really in a good place right now. And I'm feeling just that peace in my life," says the star, who announced her divorce from former NFL quarterback Jay Cutler and the end of her E! reality show Very Cavallari last spring.

"What I have found this past year is that for so many years, I was so set on the future and this list of things that I wanted to do. And what I found was that I wasn't being present. I wasn't in the moment, where now I've really let a lot of things go, and I feel like I'm breathing, I'm just letting it happen," she says, adding, "And that's not to say I don't have goals and there aren't things that I'm working towards, but I'm just way more at ease and present. It feels really nice. And I feel like it's been the biggest transitional year of my life, and I'm really figuring out who I am and what I want now."

One thing that came out of her "transitional year," is a brand new beauty line, featuring products made with true clean ingredients that reflect her true clean living.

"I live a very clean lifestyle. Everything I'm putting in my body is clean. I want to make sure everything I'm putting on my body is just as clean," she explains, adding that she wanted "effective" products that she could even feel comfortable putting on her children. "So we decided, let's do a line that really is clean, to our standards, that's still really effective."

Kristin Cavallari Uncommon Beauty
Credit: Courtesy Uncommon Beauty

The Very Cavallari star is launching Uncommon Beauty with five "core" products that she says she incorporates into her own daily beauty routine.

The line features a pineapple peptide nectar hydrating serum, a daily water cream, daily foaming powder cleanser, triple effect eye cream and mango lip balm.

"We wanted to strip it down, so instead of having 20 different products, we wanted to give you five that really check every box and get the job done, so that it's not overwhelming, and it's not stressful," the mom of three says of the line. "We live in a modern time. We're modern women. We don't want to be spending 30 minutes every morning getting ready. I like things quick and easy."

And her favorite product? While Cavallari says she loves all the items, she's most excited about the pineapple peptide nectar.

Kristin Cavallari Uncommon Beauty
Credit: Courtesy Uncommon Beauty

"I've never seen anything quite like this. It's essentially two in one, going back to how we wanted to combine products. This is anti-aging, brightening, hydrating, it also just smells so good. So it's everything you want in one," she says of the serum. "I love a good serum. So this is my favorite product. And then, my second favorite product, although it's hard to choose, is our daily cream."

Kristin Cavallari Uncommon Beauty
Credit: Courtesy Uncommon Beauty

Noting that the "most important part of a skincare routine" is hydration and as someone who is "prone to breakouts," Cavallari explains that the daily water cream helps give her a soft "glowing" complexion without clogging her pores.

"For me and my daily life, I don't wear any face makeup. I do obviously for [events] or for the office, but Saturday, going to the farmer's market, I do mascara, I fill in my brows, I call it a day," she says. "This moisturizer is awesome because I can load it on my face and it won't clog my pores. I wear it in the middle of summer. I wear it in the dead of winter. It's so hydrating."

And despite all the different types of makeup and skincare brands out there now, Cavallari — who started her business with the über successful jewelry line, Uncommon James — says she didn't feel intimidated to dive into the beauty space.

"I will look to other people for inspiration, obviously, I know what's going on and who's launching what line but I don't let that steer my decision making on anything because I think ultimately with everything I've done — Uncommon James, the jewelry, now beauty —  I'm doing me," the former Laguna Beach cast member explains.

"I'm a fan of some of the other skincare lines that are out there and jewelry lines too. But I think that we can stand on our own because the thing that's most important to me is that this is clean. And I haven't found anything out there that I can really stand behind and say, this meets my clean standards," she shares, adding, "I think that there's an appetite for everything. And so even if somebody else similar to me launched a skincare line, it would be different because we would be different. I'm creating what represents me."