Amidst Oscar snubs, diversity in Hollywood shake-ups, and the #OscarsSoWhite social media conundrum, Essence has …
If age is merely a number, then 17-year-old Radio Disney superstar Alli Simpson lives up to it all. Undoubtedly a wunderkind, the star of “The Alli Simpson Show” boasts beauty, brains, drive, and humility — all the while claiming rank as the youngest nationally syndicated radio host reaching 20 million listeners per week.
Interviewing the likes of A-listers Gigi Hadid to Justin Bieber, Gwen Stefani and more, this is but a glimpse into Simpson’s impact, as her dedication to youth empowerment and social change shines more.
“Alli is able to connect with everyone she meets thanks to her genuine warmth and charisma; that is very clear not only while being interviewed by her, but also when listening to her on-air,” supermodel Gigi Hadid remarked. “She’s an incredible & relatable voice for the young generation to be listening to and she will no doubt grow with her audience.”
Shining from head to toe in shimmering gold, Alli Simpson touched down at Dallas’ Fair Park to participate in the ultimate beauty festival, Beautycon and to broadcast live for Radio Disney from the mega attraction.
After a day filled with dynamic panel sessions, high energy fans, selfie galores, and all the cosmetic demos that one could possibly handle, we sat down with the glowing blonde bombshell to chat all things beauty (of course), youth empowerment initiatives, and her true inspirations. For the latest scoop on all things Alli Simpson, read on for the dish.
Inspire N Style: It is without a doubt amazing (and inspiring) that at 17, you are one of the youngest nationally syndicated radio hosts. How does it feel when you hear people refer to this accomplishment?
Alli Simpson: “It’s crazy. When someone told me that that was true, it’s pretty wild. I got into radio because I enjoy doing it and it was an organic sort of thing, and it was a way for me to reach out to my audience and really connect to them about all different kinds of things. When I heard (about the honor), I was like ‘That’s pretty cool!’ It’s kind of surreal. It’s a good feeling for sure.”
How do you stay humble given all of the incredible milestones you’ve reached by 17, and knowing that there are many more to come?
“Everyday I’m so grateful to be doing what I’m doing. The main thing that keeps me humble is family. Family is key. I live at home with my parents and my brothers. Just being around them all the time and constantly being open with them and talking about how I feel is something that I’m big on. They definitely are the ones that keep me humble.”
Congrats on an even larger role you will have with Radio Disney as an official Youth Engagement Officer! As a liaison and voice of your generation between the network and its audience, what is one of the major challenges facing your generation today?
“I think the biggest thing is the social media competition, and how girls are constantly comparing themselves to other girls and being false. Especially with all of these different apps — people edit their faces or edit their bodies, and everybody is fixing themselves on their phones when that’s not really who they are. I’m completely against all of that.
With teenagers, I think it’s this false perception about what’s perfect, and who’s perfect, and how we should look, and how we should act — when really everybody is losing sight of their true selves and getting lost in this crazy world. I just want everybody to love themselves for who they really are, and embrace that.”
Let’s chat beauty. What’s your skincare routine?
“A skincare routine for me — one thing is [definitely] getting rid of all your makeup before you go to bed. You can not go to sleep with any makeup on your face because it’s terrible for your skin. So my main thing is to completely cleanse my face.
I use all organic products. I use an organic brand called Aveda — I use [their] facial cleanser, or Miranda Kerr’s line Kora which is amazing too and all organic. I make sure that I completely wash my face, and I [also] have a corrective pore treatment that I use after I cleanse my face. I put it on my T-zone area, on my chin, and under my eyes, and then just a basic moisturizer before I go to bed.”
What’s your secret recipe to creating the perfect pout — Alli Simpson style?
“A big lipstick tip that’s really effective in photos is to use a darker lipliner than the actual color of the lipstick. With me I’m always wearing pale pinks and nudes so I tend to use a dark brown liner to line my lips. It can give them a shape that looks natural and not like you have a heavy lipliner on. I use a light brown or a dark brown [liner] around the outside and then I fill it in with my lipsticks. It helps with the whole ‘pouting’ situation. I’d rather do that than do duck lips.”
If we were to dump your handbag out right now, what are your top go-to items that travel with you wherever you go?
“I have a really small journal with a shiny pen that I carry with me everywhere that I constantly write down anything — I’ll draw something, write down feelings, or a quote, or a song. It’s a book filled of just me. I have my hairbrush, Qore 24 hand sanitizer that lasts 24 hours, my favorite lipstick, my powder for touch-ups, a phone charger (always), and my wallet. I’m a pretty simple girl; I like to simplify my life.”
Is there a beauty trend or technique that you believe is overrated?
“For me, there’s obviously beauty trends that I’m not a fan of but so many other people are [fans] of them. It’s a hard question for me to answer because there’s so many different looks that suit different people. I can’t wear dark lipstick, but I saw a girl today wearing this dark brown lipstick and she looked incredible, but I could never pull it off. There’s obviously beauty trends that I don’t like for myself, but they work really well for other people.”
Lastly, what advice would you give young girls who look up to you?
“Saying to ‘be yourself’ is a very cliche thing to say, but that’s really the most important thing especially these days. For me, my dad tells me everyday that ‘You’re enough.’ There’s so many girls my age who are stressing like, ‘I wish I looked like her or I’m not pretty enough or I’m not skinny enough.’
To me, the biggest thing is to just believe that the way [that] you are is enough and you don’t have to be anything else.”
Wise words to live by, by such an incredibly talented young woman. To keep up with all things Alli Simpson, be sure to catch her on Radio Disney or subscribe to her YouTube channel for more inspiration.