Discover Olivia Pope’s true take on beauty and her can’t-live-without products

When she’s not being a total boss babe as Olivia Pope on “Scandal,” Kerry Washington is paving her way in the beauty world. But unlike many of her celebrity peers, she has a different view on the purpose of the beauty industry. “Part of what my beauty routine does for me is it allows me to have a self-loving ritual each and every day,” Washington told Total Beauty. “As I go out into the world and I’m taking care of my children, taking care of work, being a wife, being an actress and trying to be a citizen in this democracy right now — it’s so important for me to have a little time that’s all about loving me.”

When it comes to beauty, Washington believes makeup comes second to taking care of your skin and looking good naturally. “That’s why I partnered with Neutrogena, because all of their makeup products have a secondary task of improving your skin,” Washington says. “I think the more you feel like your own beauty is shining through, the more confident you can be and not feel like you’re hiding behind something.”

As far as Washington’s go-to products, she says her three must-haves always include a cleanser, moisturizer and concealer. For her cleanser, Washington revealed she keeps the Neutrogena Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes, $6.99, stashed in her purse at all times. “If I had to pick one, I would choose using these makeup remover wipes over using a cleanser,” Washington says. “The wipes are so nourishing and cleansing, and they truly take everything off.” As for her moisturizer and concealer? Washington uses the Hydro Boost Water Gel with Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 15, $17.99, and the Neutrogena Hydro Boost Hydrating Concealer, $12.99. And while her products definitely serve her flawless complexion, Washington claims her skincare secret is one learned from childhood. “Drink a lot of water,” Washington says. “As a kid my mom used to tell me I had to drink all of my water before I could have juice or soda, and from then on it became a habit that served my skin well.”

With Washington’s devotion to nurturing the skin, it should come as no surprise that the actress loves “skin that breathes” and the no-makeup makeup look. “I think my friend Alicia Keys is the queen of no makeup,” Washington says. “She’s rocking and ruling that corner of the world.” And while you may think you’ve got the actress all figured out, Washington reveals that one of her secret talents doesn’t take place on screen or in her bathroom — but her kitchen. “I make a really good banana bread,” Washington says. “Seriously.”

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