Everyone’s a star and deserves the right to twinkle.
Marilyn Monroe said it best with her famous quote about universal twinkling rights, but celebrities seem to have special dispensation to sparkle.
I can’t count the number of times I’ve seen a celebrity’s shimmering complexion or fabulously A-list eyebrows and wondered just how on earth they manage to achieve such perfection. Whether it’s Gwyneth Paltrow’s flawless red lips or Kendall Jenner’s glowing skin, for a long time I thought that stars either have the world’s best genes, the greatest cosmetics money can buy, or possibly access to some sort of sorcery that gets them on-fleek and contoured to perfection. Or maybe all three.
The truth is, gorgeous celebrity looks may seem unattainable, but they often come courtesy of a certain type of magician known as celebrity makeup artists, who are becoming more and more famous themselves through social media. On platforms like Instagram and YouTube, they’re sharing their skills and techniques as well as the beauty products they swear by.
From eyeliner with staying power to complexion-boosting vitamins, I’m pleasantly surprised by these eight makeup artists’ favorite picks, which are practical, down-to-earth, and not too hard on the wallet — with the exception of a laser-like zit zapper (but who doesn’t want one of those?).
1.M.A.C Lip Conditioner
Global Senior Artist for M.A.C. Cosmetics Dominic Skinner has a lot of fab products to choose from… so what’s his fave? “M.A.C Lip Conditioner is the product I cannot live without,” the British-born Skinner says on the M•A•C website. “It makes everyone’s lips look full and healthy. Buy it here.
2. theBalm Put a Lid On It
No one creates smokey eyes like celebrity makeup artist Lisa Eldridge, who has worked her colorful magic on stars like Kate Winslet and Cara Delevigne. But before she lays down a single pop of pink or purple, she uses The Balm’s Put a Lid On It eye primer to keep the colors bright and long-lasting, like in her smokey-eye how-to video with supermodel Natasha Poly. Buy it here.
3. L’Oréal Lumi Liquid Glow Illuminator
As makeup artist to Beyoncé (as well as other luminaries like Karlie Kloss and Chrissy Teigen), Sir John knows a thing or two about luminosity. A Consulting Celebrity Makeup Artist at L’Oréal Paris, Sir John talks about his approach to beauty and says, “I want all women to feel elevated, confident, and to exude maximum presence.” He names L’Oréal Lumi Liquid Glow Illuminator as one of his go-to products. Buy it here.
4. Espada by Foreo
Katie Jane Hughes is a Brooklyn-based makeup artist whose clients include Kerry Washington and Anna Kendrick. She raves about the Espada by Foreo, a sleek little pink number that uses blue light to banish acne. “There was a red spot brewing on my chin, one of those ones that feel a little sore to the touch,” writes Hughes on her website. (Oh, we all know what those are like!) After zapping it with her Espada? “It totally stopped it in its tracks,” she declares. Buy it here.
5. Charlotte’s Magic Cream Treat & Transform Moisturizer
Charlotte Tilbury is famous in the world of cosmetics, not just as makeup artist to Kate Moss, Rihanna, and many more, but as the name behind her own eponymous brand and also a makeup fanatic so devoted to the craft that she actually sleeps with her makeup on! Tilbury tells beautyeditor that the biggest problem women face with skincare is dehydration, so it’s no surprise that her favorite — and most famous — product is her moisturizing Magic Cream. Buy it here.
6. Revlon Luxurious Color Kohl Eyeliner
Makeup artist (and Revlon’s Artistic Director) Gucci Westman’s clients — including Jennifer Aniston, Natalie Portman, and Cameron Diaz — have star power and staying power, and so do Westman’s favorite products, like the Revlon Luxurious Color Kohl Eyeliner. “It goes on and stays on,” she tells Elle of this super matte liner, which comes with a smudger. Buy it here.
7. Shiseido Shimmering Creamy Eye Color
Legendary longtime celebrity makeup artist and artistic director of Shiseido Dick Page tells Coveteur that if he could take one thing from his makeup bag it would be creamy eye makeup. “I wouldn’t really miss mascara,” he says. “I do a lot of stuff with just cream color.” On his list of top picks for not just the lids but brows, too? Shiseido Shimmering Creamy Eye Color in shades such as Leather, Sable, Shoyu, and Yuba. Buy it here.
8. OLLY Flawless Complexion Gummy Vitamins
A-list makeup artist Mary Phillips has worked with stars like Jennifer Lopez and Kendall Jenner. Her favorite beauty trick? A healthy lifestyle. “”If you don’t sleep, don’t drink water, and don’t take your vitamins… it will show up on your face and you will feel it in your head and your body,” she explains to W Magazine. In addition to essentials like sleep and hydration, Phillips recommends taking vitamins that support the complexion. “I am obsessed with OLLY Vitamins these days,” she says. Buy it here.
Comment: What’s the most impressive beauty product you’ve ever used?