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Drew Barrymore is many things — actress, producer, director, author, beauty guru, winemaker, Pokémon ambassador — but above all, she is likable. So likable that when I arrive for her talk at the Hearst Tower in midtown yesterday and am immediately offered a flower crown, I — an editor still eye-rolling my way through backlogged Coachella pitches — not only accept it, but put it on. As do most of the other 100-odd people in the audience. What can I say? Something about Drew just makes you want to throw on a daisy circlet and say things like “Happiness is the best makeup!” without a hint of irony. (More on that in a moment.)
If you think those circlets are the only floral accoutrements at the event, by the way, guess again. The stage is festooned with oversized blossoms, both real and faux. The invite for the post-Q&A cocktail reception requests that guests arrive in “floral attire.” And the actress herself shows up in a sweeping black midi skirt dotted with colorful blooms. “People tease me, asking, ‘How many flowers can you do in life?!’” she says. “And I’m like” — she fixes the crowd with a mock-deadpan stare — “endless. It’s endless.”
Flower Beauty, of course, also happens to be the name of the makeup line Drew launched at Walmart three years ago. And while her discussion (moderated by Good Housekeeping editor-in-chief Jane Francisco and pegged to the actress’ May cover for the magazine) touches on her many business ventures, it really feels more like a celebrity-led group therapy session. Two women seated in front of me exchange wide-eyed nods of agreement every few minutes; when Drew says "If you screw up, you better learn from it" in regards to her drug-fueled adolescence, I spy multiple guests scribbling the line down. Below, a few more feel-good Barrymore-isms shared throughout the evening:
On juggling acting with other projects: “I just want to gather a lot of things in my butterfly net.”
On true beauty: “A smile is going to be better than any lipstick you buy, and happiness is the best makeup.”
On why Ever After’s Danielle is her favorite character she’s ever played: “Rescuing yourself is the ultimate fairytale.”
On being intimidated to go after a job: “If it scares the ever-loving shit out of you and you think there is no possible way on this planet that you will ever pull this off, that’s the best starting point for a job.”
On considering all opportunities: “Never say never. Never is the worst word.”
On the importance of always taking a meeting: “One conversation can change your life.”
On the proper way to end a date: “Women hate the word ‘goodbye.’ Men: Say ‘to be continued,’ and we’ll all act normal.”
On getting through life’s curveballs: “We need some of the tough to appreciate the good — and there’s so much good to go around.”
Towards the end of her talk, Drew mentions that her company will soon be expanding via some “un-obvious avenues,” and hints that she’s always wanted to get into the home décor and design space. I for, one, think she could make a killing on motivational cat posters and/or photo frames (as long as they also involve flowers, of course).