81 posts tagged "Beyonce"
“When Beyoncé does a quick change, it’s like the Daytona 500, when the cars come in and they have to hurry up and change the wheels in, like, twenty seconds. When she comes back, everyone is grabbing a piece of her. I’m rebuilding—powdering, reapplying a lip; the eyes are always OK. We just want to make sure that when she runs out that she’s not [shiny] in the T-zone, that she’s glowy everywhere else, and that her lip is perfect. I’m watching the monitor from the start of the show to the end to make sure everything is impeccable, and I have razor-sharp focus to make sure nothing is messed up.”
Bey might be a well-oiled machine, but she never looks greasy. And though we all can’t have the queen’s Formula One-caliber team at the ready—speedily transforming a sweaty mess into a glowy and gorgeous music magnate—you can try Sir John’s secret, shine-canceling weapon: Press a tissue lightly over the center of your face, gently peel off, and finish with a light dusting of powder. Blotting before applying additional pigment prevents your makeup from caking.
This summer Beyoncé is On the Run and her makeup artist, Sir John, is keeping pace. We caught him on a rare day off between the tour and shooting an ad campaign with Joan Smalls before he heads back to Bey’s side for the remainder of the summer. Here, the pro breaks down how to get the “Rolls-Royce of smoky eyes,” Mrs. Carter’s fifteen-minute face, and the secret to her allover glow.
Get Beyoncé’s “Three-Point” Gilded Lids:
“I think a lot of girls feel like, ‘I can’t do a smoky eye unless it’s a navy or a black or dark brown,’” said Sir John, “and I wanted to totally get rid of that myth and do a gold [version].” To get the look, he begins by “anchoring” the eye with a coffee-colored eye kohl on top and bottom, elongating the silhouette to create a feline shape. To keep Beyoncé’s shadow completely budge-proof while she breaks it down onstage, he bases the entire lid with a long-wear cream liner before topping it with matte taupe and brown shadows on the outer and inner corners and along the bottom lash lines. For more dimension and shine, he places “antique gold” pigment in the center and around the tear ducts to reflect light. “This technique works well for [anyone] with flatter lids because it gives the eye a three-dimensional quality,” he noted. And since Tammy Faye Bakker served as a beauty reference, there’s naturally tons of mascara and plenty of falsies. “We’re using about seven [clusters of individual lashes] per eye on the top, and about two on the bottom,” he explained. The true key to achieving a stage-worthy smoky effect, he said, is to start with the eyes before applying foundation or concealer and setting aside ample amount of time to get it right—Sir John suggests giving yourself at least twenty minutes. The finishing touch (aside from her signature glow) is a swipe of shimmery “cinnamon” lipstick.
Get Beyoncé’s “Fifteen-Minute” Face:
On nights when Bey and crew are pressed for time, Sir John whips out her second signature look: cat-eyes and shocking orange lips. “We’re going to go back and forth between the two, but what’s going to run parallel in both looks is the fact that there’s this feline sensibility to the eye,” he explained. Inspired by traditional Arabian liner, Sir John uses a black waterproof gel formula and brush to apply—placing a point on the outer corner where the wing will end to avoid any “lopsided situations.” He also rims underneath the top lash line for extra intensity. On the lower waterline he employs a coffee shade, blending it gently down onto the bottom lashes. “I do black on the top and [brown on the bottom], but all of this registers as black onstage,” he said. “If I do black [all the way around], it can make a person look tired.” After perfecting the shape with skinny cotton swabs, he polishes off the look with a shimmer-free “Crayola orange” lipstick. “It’s summertime, so there’s no better time to pull if off,” he said. “We’re in stadiums—like World Cup-size stadiums—so we wanted something that would read to the rafters and give her face a sense of life and vitality.” While he was inspired by ladies in straw hats and tangerine lipstick on the beaches in Florida, Sir John assured us that Bey doesn’t appear anything like a “retiree from Boca” onstage. “Shout-out to the retirees from Boca, though!” he quipped.
Get Beyoncé’s Summer Glow:
Unlike the Mrs. Carter tour, there’s no “dolly-ness” to the blush this time around. Sir John uses a “rusty peach” to add warmth to Beyoncé’s skin and create a “seventies, Bianca Jagger in the daytime” feel. The trick to her gorgeous sheen (and not a shiny T-zone) is to keep the front of Bey’s face free from shimmer—applying a matte peach on the apples and a “dark cinnamon shimmer” along the hollows of her cheekbones for shadow and depth. “It’s the perfect dichotomy of luster without looking sweaty,” he said. For additional color, he employs a trick used by music legends like Diana Ross and Cher: “Sometimes I’ll use that same matte peach—almost like the eighties—behind the brows, on the temples of the cheeks, and on the chin. When she’s onstage, you don’t know there’s blush on her forehead, it just gives her this ‘alive’ appearance.” For the rest of Bey’s body, Sir John lubes up her limbs with a rich face cream in lieu of a formula designed for all over. (And for her complexion, he reaches for eye cream.) “A lot of people expose their body to sun so much more than their face, so they should really approach [caring for] the skin on their body maybe even more [carefully] than they do their [complexion],” he said.
Get Beyoncé’s Budge-Proof Base:
In show where at times the Queen wears fishnet over her face and her makeup is up against sweat and humidity, Sir John’s biggest task is to prolong the life of her maquillage. His first step is to create a smooth canvas via a glycolic scrub or enzyme peel—something Bey uses once or twice a week. “When you increase your cell turnover [via a scrub or glycolic peel], your foundation is going to adhere a lot longer, your primer is going to work better, and your moisturizer is going to penetrate deeper,” he said. And when it comes to the cosmetics he layers on her complexion, if it doesn’t have long-wear technology or waterproof properties, Sir John doesn’t go near it. His other trick is to double up: “I use a foundation and also a powder. I use a cream highlighter and then a powder highlighter. I use a cream blush and then a powder blush. Everything I apply has a dual layer and doesn’t move.”
Come Clean Like Beyoncé:
With waterproof formulas comes the challenge of removal. Sir John packs Bey’s kit with an oil-based makeup remover so that she can apply it to a cotton pad, hold it on her eye, and wipe away that stay-put smoky eye en route to catch a flight to the next locale. “You don’t need to scrub or be so aggressive around your eye area,” he said. He also tucks a toner into her toiletry bag to “normalize and balance her complexion’s pH before she goes to bed.” It’s a step every woman should take. As they say, you have as much time in the day as Beyoncé, so don’t skimp on skincare.
Anyone with eyes knows that Beyoncé has incredible skin, but what most people don’t see is Sir John—one of the trusted makeup artists behind the icon’s gorgeous glow. Sir John, despite what the name will have you believe, isn’t British or an ordained knight, but he’s been appointed by Queen Bey to do her maquillage for the On the Run tour kicking off tomorrow in Miami. (Honestly, Bey, Jay Z, and Blue are the closest thing we Americans have to a royal family, so we’re going to say the “Sir” title is totally warranted.) He traveled with Beyoncé during her Mrs. Carter tour and painted her face for eight of the seventeen videos from her now-legendary visual album. Sir John also works with supers such as Karlie Kloss, Iman, and Joan Smalls. For those of us who don’t have the pro at our disposal 24/7 (likely because he’s serving Sasha Fierce), Sir John spills the secrets to getting the signature glow models and music moguls crave.
STEP 1: Prep your skin
Sir John recommends using an intense exfoliator twice a week for a smooth, radiant complexion. “I like to use a glycolic peel with a fruit enzyme. The goal in any girl’s routine is to increase cell turnover so that you need less foundation and concealer—Beyoncé hardly has to use any,” he said. His other dewy skin trick: Apply a generous amount of face cream, then put on your tinted moisturizer or lightweight foundation while your skin is still moist.
STEP 2: Apply the right bronzer
“If your skin isn’t naturally golden, pick a shade with an olive base as opposed to orange. For a light complexion like Karlie’s, I use a sheer liquid bronzer in a taupe-y color,” noted Sir John. It’s a common misconception that brown-skinned women don’t need bronzer, but he uses it on everyone. “Bronzer adds a sense of warmth to dark complexions, and it photographs well. For skin tones like Beyoncé’s or Joan Smalls’, something with a caramel color creates a naturally sun-kissed look. And on Iman, I go with a cocoa-colored bronzer,” he explained. Apply it along your T-zone, in the hollows of your cheeks, and just beneath your chin. If you’re using a powder, stick with a matte formula—it creates more depth.
STEP 3: Dab on something luminous
This is the part that really gives that glowy effect: Use your ring finger or a BeautyBlender sponge to smudge creamy highlighter above your brows, right above your cheekbones, down the bridge of your nose, and onto the center of your chin. “Choose a product that has a pearlescent finish to it—not shimmer. You don’t need shimmer if your skin is radiant from the core. It can read as juvenile or inexpensive,” Sir John stressed.
STEP 4: Add a hint of color
“I love creamy blushes. They look more natural, especially in the summertime, and they give that post-sex glow. I get inspiration from women when their skin is super-flushed from the gym or hot weather. That’s the look you want to emulate,” said Sir John. Press the blush into the fleshiest part of your cheeks and gently blend. Try a sheer berry shade if your skin is light, opt for soft peach if you’re medium, and to flatter dark skin, reach for bright pinks.
STEP 5: Mattify with powder
A word of caution from Sir John: “You never want to be shiny on your nose.” To prevent unwanted oiliness, grab a fluffy brush and dust translucent powder around your nose and your chin. A mattifying primer that you can use on top of makeup will work, too. “Leave everywhere else as lubricated as possible,” he said.
STEP 6: Never (ever) skip mascara
Once you’ve ‘yoncefied yourself to perfection, the last thing you need is a few coats of mascara. “Sometimes the eyes can look naked if there is nothing there. I’ll whip out individual lashes like I have them in a gun holster, but I know most women don’t have time for that, so mascara is key. It brings everything together. If there was a fire and one of my girls was running out, the one thing I would give her is mascara,” said Sir John. We imagine after Beyoncé sets the stage ablaze with her performance, she coolly sashays out of the building with her go-to tube in tow.
The plait that captivated many a designer (Adam Selman, Simone Rocha, and Sarah Burton of Alexander McQueen among them) for Fall 2014 shows no sign of stopping: Cornrows made an appearance at Kenzo’s Resort show yesterday, alongside oversize hoops on select girls (an accessory seen at Balmain a few months back). They’ve also been spotted recently on the likes of Queen Bey, Rita Ora, Cara Delevingne, and Kristen Stewart. The braid with serious street cred that stems back to the Stone Age even showed up in our latest feature. For those of us who are all thumbs, we suggest finding a dexterous friend or enlisting the help of a pro.
Some celebrate the beginning of summer around the grill…and others welcome the warmer months with a new ‘do. Two Brit beauties, model Malaika Firth and pop star Rita Ora, are beating the impending heat (and frizz) with cornrows. While the catwalker showed off her braiding skills on Instagram, Ora took to the stage at BBC Radio 1′s Big Weekend in Glasgow, Scotland, with platinum plaits and Technicolor ends. With Queen Bey already jumping on the bitty-braid bandwagon, we have a feeling we’ll see many a Bo Derek-esque moment on the beach.
For inspiration throughout the ages, check out our brief history of the iconic hairstyle.