Beauty Around the Clock: Maitreyi Ramakrishnan

The 'Never Have I Ever' star on how she embraces her natural hair, her favorite South-Asian-owned beauty brands, and the foundation TikTok loves.

never have i ever season 4 netflix
(Image credit: Future)

Welcome to Beauty Around the Clock, Marie Claire's weekly peek into the daily lives of some of the most game-changing men and women in their industries. Ever wonder how they get it all done in a day? Here's your answer.

Don't get it wrong: Maitreyi Ramakrishnan is not one of those Gen-Zers that think a side part is uncool. In fact, the 21-year-old actress, who's spent the last four years playing Devi Vishwakumar on Netflix's Never Have I Ever, rocked the hairstyle during her middle school days, although she doesn't recall the style fondly. "It was terrible, but I was convinced I looked really hot," she tells Marie Claire. "My mother tried to tell me that it was a comb-over, and I would get very mad and upset that she was dissing my style." 

Since her preteen days, Ramakrishnan has abandoned the deep side part and taken up a simple yet structured beauty routine. She has her rules—removing every speck of makeup before bed and avoiding heat on her hair, for instance—and she sticks to them. And as a self-described "good South-Asian girly," the Turning Red star keeps a regimen packed with Asian-owned beauty brands and tips from her grandma. Ramakrishnan unpacks her daily routine, from her late mornings to her signature floral scent, below. 

Rise & Shine

I think to myself: Why am I awake? Do I need to be awake? Can I go back to bed? If it's yes, I go back to bed. If it's no, I contemplate going back to bed anyways, weigh the pros and cons, and then maybe decide I should probably get up. 

[Then I] don't get up, go get my phone, scroll through TikTok till I find something alarming enough to make me say, "Yeah, that's enough internet for the morning," then get out of bed. 

I am not a morning person at all. I am a late-night owl. But when I'm working I don't mind waking up early. But let's say I don't have work to do, then I will stay up till like seven in the morning, eight in the morning. When I'm not working and I'm just living life, my signal to go to bed is when I can hear the birds chirping. 

Morning Maintenance

It's all under the same brand: Eminence. I'll wash my face and all that jazz, but then I'll spray my face with toner, serum, and then a facial oil—I like to massage that into my skin and it feels very nice and glamorous. Then I put cream on, and then I probably stare into the mirror for a little bit and contemplate life. It helps with the skin—a little introspection gets into your pores. And then I go seize the day. It's a very simple skincare routine. But it is working. It's doing good stuff, I think. 

Fitness Fix 

My little cousin wants to do kickboxing lessons with me, and I used to, before Never Have I Ever, be super into kickboxing and I really liked it, so I am excited to start doing that again now that the show is coming to a close and I feel like I can dedicate my time to that. 

I do sometimes also go to the gym. That is a new thing. I signed up for my first-ever gym membership in my life, and I gotta use it or it's  a waste of money. I go with my older cousin, and she just tells me what to do, and then I do it and don't question it. I take my AirPods, I listen to good music, and I pray for the time to pass. Or take really long breaks going to refill my water bottle. 

Signature Look 

I don't think I have a signature makeup vibe except for the fact that I like to go with more natural skin when I do my own makeup and just keep it clean. My foundation— which a lot of people on TikTok have asked for—is from a brand called Basma Beauty and it's South Asian-owned. Then another thing I always use is these lashes from Emboss Beauty, which is actually one of my makeup artists' brands and I'm very proud of her. 

Signature Scent 

I only use one perfume. It's Chloé's rose perfume. I really like that one because it smells like flowers. My grandma likes it, too. Not for herself, but she thinks it's nice on me. 

Daily Playlist 

I'm a playlist person in the sense that I have multiple different playlists for multiple different moods and situations. I'm very particular about how curated and epic my playlists are. They don't have names and they're all just labeled with emojis. One is the moon emoji, the crescent moon. That's for my classical playlist because it's night, chill vibes. Maybe when I'm studying and stuff, I go with that. I have the flaming heart. That's for my "get back up" playlist. Whenever I feel down and I feel like giving up, I listen to that playlist. I have a rocket emoji for a playlist that I literally listen to when I'm driving... faster than I maybe should. 

Hair Help 

I don't wash my hair every day because that's not good. Don't do that. I have drier hair... I wash it every third day and then I try not to use heat when I don't have to. If I'm just at home, I've learned to try and embrace my natural hair, just let it chill, let it vibe, unless maybe I'm going out somewhere and I do want a specific look that needs me to use my Dyson. I am a Dyson Airwrap girly. Unless I'm doing that, I won't use heat. But if I am gonna use heat, I put a good ole heat protector on it and then scalp massager. And, like any good South Asian girly, I have a coconut oil that I use; I have an amla oil I use, and it's literally my grandma massaging it into my scalp. To be honest, I like it better when she does it for me. Coconut oil and leave that in for an hour and that totally helps keep my hair shiny. 

Beauty Icon 

Audrey Hepburn. She's very classy because she's someone you think of when you think of timeless fashion. 

Lights Out

Pretend I [was wearing] makeup that day. I would take it off with a face wipe but I would put micellar water on it—this makes it less rough on your skin. Then a little bit of cleanser by a brand called Epicutis, which is really nice. Then a cleansing oil, because I really don't like seeing that I have a little bit of makeup left on my face. I have to really get it out. I might [use] one of those facial scrubbers... And then once my face is clean I kind of do my skincare routine [from] the morning, plus maybe  a night cream, and then I call it a day. I plop my face onto my pillow and cry my sorrows away—kidding! I just fall asleep. 

Brooke Knappenberger
Associate Commerce Editor

Brooke Knappenberger is the Associate Commerce Editor at Marie Claire, where she writes across the board from fashion and beauty to books and celebrities. As a pop culture junkie, Brooke obsessively consumes and writes about the latest movie releases, streaming TV shows, and celebrity scandals. She has over three years of experience writing on fashion, beauty, and entertainment and her work has appeared on Looper, NickiSwift, The Sun US, and Vox Magazine of Columbia, Missouri. Brooke obtained her Bachelor's Degree in Journalism from the University of Missouri’s School of Journalism with an emphasis on Magazine Editing and has a minor in Textile and Apparel Management.

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