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Gaga For Gugu (Mbatha-Raw's Lips At The Beauty And The Beast Premiere)

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The Oscars are over, which means you can finally stop pretending you care about serious cinema and instead kick back with a heaping bag of popcorn in one of those new AMC Theatres seats that recline like a La-Z-Boy and watch a good, old-fashioned blockbuster. It's time to be your true self, and yes, it's finally time to see Beauty And The Beast. (Sure, pretend like you haven't been gearing up for this moment for the better part of a year–we're with you.) As part of the pre-game for this seminal moment in 2017 film, Nick Barose sent us a little postcard from preparing one of the film's stars, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, for the premiere last night. It's a master lesson in dressing loudly and perfecting your makeup to match, but not overplay, the look as a whole. His kit is actually really minimal! Anyway, check it out below:

Dear ITG,

Getting ready for the red carpet should always be fun and no pressure, even when it’s for one of the biggest movies this year! Gugu is so great to work with—she’s very open-minded and she always has a great playlist and makes the best tea. Hairstylist Dicky Collins and I wanted to do something classic, but also modern and clean for this look. With the bold, electric blue Oscar de la Renta dress, simple makeup that’s too neutral would just get lost. Especially on a huge red carpet like this—I mean they shut down Hollywood/Highland for the event. We went for a pop of color on lips with a fresh sheen to draw attention to her face and glowing skin.

My list of products for this was actually quite short:

  • Beautyblender is always my go-to when creating seamless foundation that looks polished and not makeup-y. Always dampen in first and blend in every direction.
  • Neutrogena Hydro Boost Foundation in Cocoa and Concealer in Medium: That duo is buildable and gives good, fresh looking coverage so skin looks like skin. Apply one coat of foundation and then layer a bit more on forehead and T-zone, because on the red carpet, that’s where the light hits the most. I dabbed the concealer under her eyes and around her mouth to create a cleaner canvas so the lip color popped more against it.
  • Charlotte Tilbury's Film Star Bronze Glow in Medium to Dark is perfect to add dimension to the face, especially for darker skin like Gugu.
  • Neutrogena Healthy Skin Blush in Flushed is a silky matte coral tone that I love. It compliments her golden skin and it makes the face pop.
  • False lashes that I trimmed in half. They look feathery and flirty, very natural. I always say, "Just because it’s fake, doesn’t mean it can’t be real!" The key is to customize it to fit your eyes perfectly.
  • The new Lancôme La Rose a Poudrer dusted on her bare shoulders and arms added some body glow and highlight.
  • Adding subtle highlight on top of longwear makeup can help it look more natural but last just as long. Glossier Haloscope in Topaz really helped with this.

But lips were really the star of the look. I love layering bright lip stain underneath softer color gloss. It’s a great way to control intensity of the color and you can custom build it to make it brighter or darker without getting a lipstick-y texture. I layered Neutrogena Moisturesmooth Color Stick in Classic Red, applied all over her lips and blotted, and then added a soft coral gloss on top: Neutrogena Hydro Boost Hydrating Lipshine in Flushed Coral. On golden skin like Gugu, you always want a bit of orangey undertone on cheeks and lips, it’s bright but feels earthier and fresher.

xx,
Nick

Photos courtesy of Nick Barose and Getty.

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