Conventional wisdom says it takes a decade of New York City living before you can call yourself a New Yorker, but 21-year-old model Grace Elizabeth says she feels fully acclimatized after just three years. 

“When I moved here, I gave myself six months,” says the Florida-native. “I thought, “If I don’t do something fantastic and if I don’t feel that I’m going to be extremely successful by then, I should probably move on.’”

Needless to say, things worked out. (Think: numerous campaigns with the likes of Guess, Polo Ralph Lauren and Victoria Secret’s Pink collection, and runway shows with just about every major designer.) Now, she joins Karlie Kloss, Fei Fei Sun, Carolyn Murphy and Hilary Rhoda as a spokesperson for Estée Lauder beauty.

“They’re such successful models, but they’re extremely genuine and it’s really nice to have someone like that be your mentor as well as your friend,” says Elizabeth of her fellow Estée crew. “Carolyn and I are both from Florida and she always calls me her “little chicken.” [Laughs] She’s really taken me under her wing.” It’s a gig that’s close to home for Elizabeth; her grandmother once worked at an Estée Lauder counter at a local mall. 


Estée Lauder Pure Color Desire Rouge Excess Lipstick ($55), available October at Holt Renfrew. 

On a regular day, Elizabeth’s approach to beauty is decidedly minimal. She curls her lashes (“I have very long lashes and it just brightens the eyes”) and applies Stay-in-Place concealer. It was only working on the campaign for Pure Color Desire—the brand’s new highly pigmented range of creamy and pearlescent lipsticks, out October—with makeup artist Violette, beauty director for Estée Lauder, that the model says she finally learned how to apply lipstick properly.

“You tilt your head down,” she explains of the technique. “It makes your lips relax, so you can get the shape a lot nicer and more pouty.”