If you ask celebrity makeup artist Rosie Jane Johnston why she started her own eponymous beauty brand back in 2010, her answer comes naturally: “I knew what I wanted—beauty that is beautifully simple.” And all you have to do is peek into Rosie’s home to realize that this philosophy stretches far beyond her entrepreneurial instincts.
The spaces that this mom of two has arranged and decorated with care all serve as proof of her love for pure and simple design. Between her thoughtful color choices and collection of vintage treasures, Rosie has designed a home that she and her family can be proud of—and that they can live comfortably in, too, thanks to a sincere dedication to natural and environmentally-conscious products and materials. Below, we invite you to take our exclusive tour of this native Australian’s dreamy LA home, plus get the scoop on how she turned her dreams for By Rosie Jane into reality.
Photography by Monica Wang
What’s the biggest difference you’ve experienced, having moved from Australia to Los Angeles?
Thats hard because I moved to Los Angeles when I was 21, so I feel like my adult life has always been here. What I love most about the U.S. is the amazing curiosity of Americans. They are always looking for the next big thing, which is a wonderful environment to be an entrepreneur in.
What do you miss about Australia?
The beaches and my family.
What do you love most about Los Angeles?
The weather—and that it’s a cultural melting pot.
Tell us about your beauty brand, By Rosie Jane. When did you first spark an interest in the world of beauty?
I was in drama class in 12th grade, and in order to get my final grade and graduate, I had to participate in the school play. I opted to do the makeup. I loved it, and when I was about 19, I decided to go to makeup school. I became a makeup artist and moved to Los Angeles. I created my first product in 2003; I borrowed money from my dad and started formulating a cheek and lip product that was shiny. By the time I started By Rosie Jane in 2010, I knew what I wanted—beauty that is beautifully simple. Simplicity is key to creating great products for everyday life.
Name three of your favorite Los Angeles resources for home décor.
HomeGoods for home accents and pillows, Etsy and yard sales for one-of-a-kind pieces and I love IKEA!
Could you tell us about your dedication to products that are cruelty-free, and also free of parabens, sulfates, phthalates and phosphates?
I have always felt that if you can make a product without all of the bad stuff and still get amazing performance, then why not do it? We use high quality ingredients and try to stay as natural and environmentally-conscious as we can, while still creating beautiful and easy-to-use products.
What made you decide to take this stance as a company, and do you follow the same sort of sustainable lifestyle in your personal life?
I think its important to find new ways of doing things—not to just be content with the status-quo. We are dedicated to finding better ingredients and things that are better for the environment. Sometimes that means using natural products and sometimes it means using synthetics. When creating products—and in my everyday life—I try not to give myself too many rules. I believe that if you love something and it makes you feel good, then you should buy it!
What’s in your beauty bag? What products do you always go back to year after year?
Of course, my Essential Cheek and Lip Gloss By Rosie Jane, Clarins Beauty Flash Balm is an absolute must-have, ExfoliKate by Kate Somerville, Laura Mercier Mascara and the Brett Brow pencil by Brett Freedman. If I have these things, I always know I will look fresh and pulled together.
How would you describe your personal aesthetic?
I pretty much live in loungewear, so I would say my style is relaxed and easy, with a little edge. I like to think I am effortlessly chic?!
Does that translate into the design of your home?
I think so—I try to keep everything simple and neutral with hints of color, vintage details and clean design.
What’s your all-time favorite scent?
It would have to be Leila Lou. I’ve been wearing it for eight years and I never get sick of it. But I love Paris by YSL because it reminds me of my grandmother and spending summer holidays with her in Queensland, Australia.
Your company stands by the idea of luxury combined with simplicity. Would you say that your home reflects the same style? If so, how do you achieve that?
Yes, at least I hope so! I try to pick things that make our house feel homey, and comfortable and lived in. Because I have two little girls running around, I like to have furniture that feels luxe, but that also has texture so it doesn’t show dirt and little crayon marks all over it! “Keep it simple and comfortable,” is my motto!
We love the bright white, airy atmosphere of your home! How do you go about creating a color palette to play off of your white walls?
I stick to neutrals and slightly muted tones—I love a clean, white, vacation-feeling home. I try to choose colors that aren’t going to draw your eye too much in any one direction. That said, I do have a bright red print in my house—but I just fell in love with it!
How has being a mom impacted the design of your home? What are your favorite ways to incorporate children’s art and accessories into the style of each space?
Being a mom has impacted the design of our entire home. Our house is cozy (a.k.a. small), so we have to use our living room and kitchen for multiple purposes. I want every room to feel inviting and not too precious to sit it, play in, etc. All except my bedroom—there’s no drawing in that room! I love having family pictures everywhere, and using my girls’ masterpieces as artwork makes them so happy and maintains a casual feel throughout the house.