Jayla Roxx sat down for an interview with QUILL Editor-in-Chief Tess Aurore. They discussed BatMe! Cosmetics‘ release, Roxx’s role as a leader in the LGBTQ+ community, and what’s next for the industry icon.
Tess: First of all, congratulations! Monday was a big day for you.
Jayla Roxx: Oh my God. It’s been a long time coming. I told y’all I was going to be back. I wanted to make sure that I had the proper time, the planning. I knew what I was going to put out, X, Y, and Z. And believe it or not, I’m already sold out, and it’s not even been a week. Thank you.
Well, you did disappear for eight months…
I think my plan kind of worked about, not even teasing anything, just dropping it. So everybody’s like, “this may happen again. So I’m going to buy 20 pairs, just so I can be stocked up before the migration.” I’m like, thank you, but we’re here to stay for sure. We’re here to stay and we ain’t going nowhere.
When you and I were talking the first time, you made it clear that this is a resurgence. This isn’t a restart. You’ve been around, you didn’t go anywhere.
I didn’t. I just needed to figure out what the best formula was. And now I have an amazing team that helps me design. We have a new design on our lashes. We have a newer DuraFLEX band, so it ensures longer-lasting wear. I listen to the people and I want to make sure that they feel seen and heard within their products.
We also talked community, and you brought yours back. Though, like you, they didn’t go anywhere. Most brands relaunch and have to start up again, and you’re sold out.
I appreciate it. Even some of the Drag Race girls have been buying their stuff, so I’m like, oh, thank you. It just shows that people respect me and the brand. So that’s why I said, when I stopped almost eight months ago, I didn’t lose any Instagram followers. They didn’t say, “oh, fuck this.” They were just like, “okay, we’ll wait patiently.” And they have, so I’m super excited for them to show their new looks.
Yeah. Well, I got cussed out a little bit. They’re like, “finally!” but it’s all out of love. Honestly, it makes me feel like Rihanna when they keep asking her for an album. She’s like, “leave me alone. I’m going to continue to sell my underwear and makeup until I decide to release the album.” And that’s how I am. She’s a Pisces too. I’m a Pisces, and we just do it when we want to.
I’m going to include an entire analysis on Pisces.
I’m interested in it too, so let me know what you find out.
I’ve got you covered. So, you are releasing these amazing lashes – would you call it a collection?
Yes. “Velvet” was just one pair originally, but now we have two or three different redesigns of that same pair. So now I’ve created that to be this full collection. And they’re customizable. You can cut them, you can shape them however you want.
It gives people a sense of individuality.
Exactly. So people can feel like, “well, I’m wearing those too, but you’re not wearing them like me.” This just gives everyone a customizable way to find themselves within those products and be able to truly stand out.
Would you say you put yourself into the products? Most creators do, but I’m curious about how it goes for you.
I always try to make sure that I stay true to my word: if I’m not wearing it, I’m not selling it. So people already know this is the look. If I’m selling something that makes people look good, then people will trust my instinct. Honestly, I’m glad that I did the resurgence because not only did the products go through a resurgence, but so did I.
Back when I started, there were people who didn’t identify as any [gender], but they didn’t have the language for it. Nor did I have the language for it. But as we push forward and realize there’s over – since I do casting and stuff, now – over 15 different genders, I’m like, “well, shit. I have a lot of learning to do.” You know what I mean? And that’s kind of why I took that break: to also learn about the people that I’m talking to.
Isn’t it interesting how our language has evolved in the community? I mean, we went from LGBT to LGBTTIQQ2SA, and I have no doubt it’s going to continue to grow and evolve.
Right? I can’t say LGBT because that’s still marginalizing people. So I changed gender-less to gender-free. So it’s a gender-free cosmetic brand now because there’s nothing “less” about gender. We have to be free with who we are regardless of how we show up. So when I say made for everybody, it’s for everyone.
That’s one thing that I really appreciate you saying, because when we had our first conversation, I said to you, “well I was researching trans beauty owners and I couldn’t find any. So how do you say, ‘I’m trans and I’m awesome and buy my shit?’ You went, “ah, no, it’s about the quality, and I just so happen to be trans.” And I really debated putting that in because I was like, do I want to put myself in that position? And I went, “fuck yeah I do,” because here I am claiming I know this community and I just made a total mistake.
I’m glad that you were able to put that in there because I was really like, oh, she’s being vulnerable. And that’s one of the things that people really, really, really, really, really, really don’t want to be: vulnerable.
It’s scary to admit you don’t know something when you’re supposed to know so much. You get that.
Definitely. I can honestly say that, as a trans person, I don’t know everything. I have to do my due diligence and be non-ignorant as a person who is a leader of tomorrow and a trailblazer. I can’t do that without knowledge and without knowledge, there is no power. So I think I will always be willing to learn.
That comes back to what I said about how you know who you are. That’s so important in a leader and in a trailblazer and in someone who owns a business. You have to be sure of yourself and be sure that you are capable of and open to learning. I think you’ve done an incredible job at opening the door and starting conversation.
Well, thank you, I’m glad we’re having this interview.
Final question before I let you go: I know the release was literally four days ago, but I have to imagine that you’re also looking toward the future already, especially with it being sold out.
Oh my God, please don’t make me do it. Don’t make me do it.
Your mind must be racing.
Oh my God. I don’t know where to go from here. I was like, “well, maybe we can do this. We can do that.” Then I just realized people don’t really want extra shit. They just want to buy the lashes, be happy, and go about their day. So I think we’ll just go with that. Right now I’ll just leave the lashes as they be. And then once I start to see people wanting more and expecting more, then I’ll do more.
You’re just basking in what is. Because people want it.
Yeah. They just want it. So I’m like, okay, let’s just want it. I don’t have to do the whole, “oh, let’s do this, and let’s have flowers.” No, girl, they just want the stuff, just give it to them clean and simple, straight to the point.
I’m just saying, I haven’t seen a single TikTok ad.
There are no extra TikToks and Instagrams and stuff like that. They just buy the stuff, girl, because that’s what they want. We’re entertainers. We don’t care about the instructional videos. We don’t need that shit. We don’t need the extra brushes and lash curlers and blah, blah. We already have that shit. So I’m like, alright, let’s just keep it straight to the point. It’s user-accessible. Buy it on the way out.
I think a lot of people put on the bells and whistles, like you said, but the bells and whistles here are you, Jayla Roxx. You ARE the bells and whistles of BatMe!.
I always tell people, “it’s the most interested people that are the most interesting.”
You dropped that knowledge on me the first time we talked, and I went, “well, there it is.”
That’s how you know I haven’t changed my mantra: because I still say that to this very day. With everything that I do, it’s interest. And that makes me more interesting.
Thank you so much for taking time to talk to me. I’ll let you get to set. You’re a queen. I’m so, so proud of you. So proud of you.
Thank you so much, and I’m so proud of you, too. Talk soon.