Following in the footsteps of RuPaul, Amanda Lepore and Jeffree Star, Dame Edna Everage has teamed up with the beauty giant on a line of makeup arriving in stores Friday.
Australian comedian Barry Humphries created the character of Mrs. Norm Everage in 1955, a dowdy Melbourne housewife who has since morphed into the bespectacled, bedazzled and beloved Dame Edna. Edna, recognizable by her trademark lilac hair, rose to fame in the 1970s with stage shows in Australia and the U.K. TV specials followed, and soon Edna was touring the world. She will stop at the Ahmanson Theatre in L.A. in June with a new show, "Dame Edna: The First Last Tour."
Her cosmetics collection, $14 to $39 at MAC boutiques and department stores, comes in rhinestone-studded packaging picturing the megastar's signature cat's-eye glasses. Products include grandmotherly frosted Wisteria blue eye shadow and Varicose Violet nail polish.
We sat down with the Dame at the Chateau Marmont on Monday to discuss her makeup line and style secrets.
How did this collection come about?
It's a surprising thing. I always used a minimum of makeup. I felt I belonged to that generation that was slightly more abstemious, and considered makeup a bit naughty. That's my Melbourne background. As you know, Melbourne is the Boston of Australia.
But I was in a department store in New York, wondering where my career was going about a decade ago, when I saw a product that said MAC. I tried a little, smeared a little on, and I heard my skin say thank you. It was an epiphany.
Then I bought a few of the products, and I got a Broadway contract, I won a Tony Award, I appeared on "Ally McBeal." I became adored in Hollywood.
So MAC was a good luck charm?
I've thought on and off about what product I should endorse -- can you imagine the number of people who have approached me? And I'm lucky that I'm a wealthy woman. . . . I feel, particularly now, that we women have to look our best. There is a simple way of looking your best that takes a few seconds each morning, a little pampering or cherishing, a little MAC-illage!
So tell me about this powder -- it looks like fairy dust.
Funnily enough, there is a bit of fairy dust mixed in, but it's very expensive, real fairy dust. This is called What a Dame High-Light Powder.
I have to ask you about your stunning ropes of jewels.
My jewels, just between you and me, are in Switzerland. These are expert fakes. I say that for muggers. I have no security detail.
And your feathered dress?
This is a beautiful dress designed by my son Kenny. Kenny is a couturier. He's a renaissance boy -- he's been a Qantas steward, he's lectured in flower arrangement, he has been a choreographer, he has done display work in department stores, and he can whistle any show tune you like. He's a man's man.
Do you think Hollywood is a stylish place?
I don't stop in the street and gape at glamorous women, because frankly, there aren't many of them. Honestly, it's Frumpsville.