Jeffree Star is one of the biggest names in the beauty industry, with his YouTube channel boasting over 18 million subscribers and his makeup company valued at $1.5 billion. Given Star’s immense success, people might be wondering about Star’s childhood and parents.
Jeffree Star’s parents are Jeffrey Lynn Steininger and Marra Shubyann Lindstrom Steininger, though it’s thought that Jeffree was raised solely by his mother and grandparents for most of his life.
Read more below about Jeffree’s childhood and why fans were confused about the identity of Star’s mom.
Childhood Trauma and the Making of a Mogul
Jeffree Star was born and raised in Orange County, California. The beauty guru had a tumultuous childhood, with his father, Jeffrey L. Steininger, committing suicide when Jeffree was six.
Star split time being raised by his mom and his grandparents, first in Costa Mesa and eventually Huntington Beach. It was during this time that Star would begin experimenting with makeup, noting, “My mom had a ton of makeup lying around. I’d look through it and try stuff on, and I realized that I could totally change my appearance, and that it was fun to look different. Then I could just wipe it all off and be me.”
After high school, Star would go on to have a somewhat successful music career, but ultimately rose to fame and fortune as a YouTube beauty guru and makeup mogul. In 2014, Jeffree Star established Jeffree Star Cosmetics, which went on to be one of the most successful makeup brands in history.
A Little White Lie
As his star power began to rise, fans became curious about Star’s personal life and childhood. People, however, were confused, when the person who had been portrayed as Jeffree Star’s mother in multiple videos and social media posts turned out not to be Star’s mother at all.
Laurie Steininger, who goes by the username, MommaLaurieStar, on Twitter, could often be found wearing Jeffree Star merchandise and Star himself posted photos of the duo on social media. Of the deception, Star says, “I needed something to tell the internet. I was growing, my numbers were growing, I needed to say something but I was just embarrassed. My father was dead. A lot of my family had passed away. I wasn’t close to a lot of my family.”
You can see Jeffree Star discuss what he calls the “dark secret” about his family in the YouTube video below.
A Sad Revelation and New Beginnings
The truth was that Jeffree Star and his birth mother, Marra, had fallen out shortly after Jeffree graduated high school and had not spoken in a decade. Laurie Steininger is Star’s aunt through marriage on his father’s side, someone Star remained close to even after the death of his uncle Phil.
Unbeknownst to Star, however, was the fact that his birth mother had been homeless for several years during their time without any contact. In 2018, Star was on vacation with then-boyfriend, Nathan Schwandt, when he discovered Marra was living out of the trunk of her car.
Star and his mother spoke on the phone, learning of all the terrible things that had happened to her during their time apart (Star has declined to elaborate on specifics, saying it’s too upsetting to discuss), and Marra was devastated that he had been portraying Laurie as his mother online.
Despite hurt feelings on all sides, Star returned from his trip in order to help his mother, saying “The fact that I’ve reconnected with my mom, I don’t even know how to put it into words. It’s so beautiful, it’s so fulfilling emotionally to heal so many internal scars that me and her have both had and just to be able to hug each other. We’re working on each other and we’re working on our relationship and I can’t wait to see what the future brings.”
Though there was deception on Star’s part, it’s now clear who Jeffree Star’s real parents are and that he has both a mom and aunt he is close to currently.