Gwen Stefani’s Makeup Artist Shares His 32-Second Face Trick


via E! /

After decades in the beauty business, you pick up on a few tricks…especially if you’re Gwen Stefani‘s main makeup artist, Gregory Arlt.Even though he’s created several looks on a mix of celebs, including Angelina Jolie, Dita von Tease and Susan Lelechi Watson, the Mac Cosmetics pro artist has a few tips to make sure anyone touched by his magic mascara wand comes out as an “A+ version of themselves.”

“I’m like the beauty exorcist,” he said. “I like to pull the beauty out of somebody as opposed to put it on them.”

How exactly do we get a Gwen Stefani-status look without piling on the products? Gregory stopped by E! News to share his tips, which, really, anyone can do.

It’s no secret Gregory Arlt, Gwen’s makeup artist, is a fan of all that shines; however, there is the age-old concern that anything with sheen can make mature skin look even older, especially if you have crow’s feet or deep wrinkles. “It’s amazing how urban legends have carried on through the years, because that was when technology was not what it is now,” he explained. “When you did put frosted eye shadows on, it did look like aluminum foil; it exacerbated every wrinkle and every crease. While it’s true that matte minimizes imperfections (like if you were painting a wall and there were nicks and dings, you’re not going to use high-gloss paint), I think if a woman has 32 seconds to get ready, then definitely [put on a product with] shimmer because it just pops. It puts a little life on your face.” That could be a frosted lip, blush with sheen, and if you dare, even glitter eyes.

If you’re a fan of Gwen’s beauty looks, you know the singer loves a good glitter eye. But if the thought of messy eye shadow fallout or glitter getting everywhere worries you, the makeup artist has a pretty affordable trick for you. “When [glitter or shadow] falls, the propensity is to wipe it away and, of course, you look like a shiny football player,” he explained. Instead, after application, take a little scotch tape, roll it up and dab it on bare skin first “so it’s not pulling your skin up,” then dab off the extra makeup.

“For me it’s all about highlights and really bringing out the bone structure by highlighting as opposed to darkening,” or what Gregory calls “the C-word: contour.” Celebs like Gwen are so good with their skin care that highlighter is really what makes their visages look so dewy, according to the pro. “If you use something shiny, yes, it can perpetuate a little bit of texture,” he warned. “But you can create the dewy look by highlighting the upper cheekbone only.”

How do you get said dewy skin to last all day? It depends on the highlighter you choose. “For every day, I like using creams, but I do like using powder highlights a lot if we’re doing photo shoots or television or if it’s going to be a long day, because it doesn’t dissolve into your skin like a lot of cream can. The pro’s favorites? MAC Pearl and Bronze for cream and Soft and Gentle for powder highlight.

Why does it take what seems like an hour just to create straight liner? It takes practice, urged the pro, but also you need to channel your inner Beyoncé. “Tilt your chin up like a queen looking down on her people,” Gregory explained. The makeup artist prefers starting three-quarters in, closest to the inner corner of the eyes and working your way out to the sides. If you’re opting for cream liner, “use a tiny brush,” he said. “For a little bit more of a novice out there, use an angled brush. It’s a little bit easier. I like to lay the brush really flat against the skin because that’ll give you a really nice line.” Also: “No Starbucks in the morning…or else it’ll look like an EKG,” he added.

Do you have a hard time with fake lashes? Wait 30 seconds after applying the adhesive before gluing them on your eyes. The formula will gum up a bit more, creating more grip and your falsies won’t slide everywhere. The extra step? The pro is a big fan of heated eyelash curlers, especially after using falsies. The tool will blend your fake and real lashes together and give it a natural look. And, don’t worry, it won’t burn off your lashes, he urged.

Sounds easy enough, right?

Practice makes perfect.

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