Talk about great timing. Just when I start a new series that highlights the most naturally gorgeous red carpet skin (a.k.a. "skinspiration"), Alicia Keys rocks up to the BET Awards with a completely bare complexion.
Yes, bare! Because in case you missed it, she recently vowed in Lenny Letter to stop covering up:
"Every time I left the house, I would be worried if I didn't put on makeup: What if someone wanted a picture?? What if they POSTED it??? These were the insecure, superficial, but honest thoughts I was thinking. And all of it, one way or another, was based too much on what other people thought of me."
Has the #nomakeup movement finally begun?
What I love: Obviously, to walk a red carpet without a stitch of makeup on conveys (and requires!) total confidence. I love Alicia for doing it, and I love her for trying to start a new cultural trend. (I see it as not necessarily about wearing a bare face, but about wearing LESS, and embracing YOU. Not the ridiculous drag queen-inspired trends that Nick Barose talked about here.) I think Alicia's skin looks great—slightly dewy and naturally flushed—with just a swipe of balm on the lips. The headscarf and earrings definitely help this feel more dressed-up. What I'd change: Nothing! However, I should point out that it's easy to do #nomakeup when you have young, clear, even-toned, acne-free skin...
What I love: Amanda has that delicate, porcelain kind of skin that looks so beautiful with cool-toned pale pinks. It would be so easy to overpower her with dark colours or a heavy-handed application, but this soft blush, lipstick and mascara are a perfect match, and all she needs. I am amazed at the quality of her skin—not even one sun spot! What I'd change: Nothing.
What I love: That cheek highlight! God! It might be the best example of strobing I've ever seen. Strictly for evening, of course—I think the shimmer would probably be too much for daytime. But it's divine on Elle's enviable 18-year-old complexion, along with the pink glitter eyeshadow and strict top knot. The natural brows keep it from looking too "done." I swear, the Fanning sisters' makeup artist (Erin Ayanian Monroe) is one of the most talented and creative in Hollywood. What I'd change: Nothing.
What I love: How great is Rose's berry lipstick against her fresh skin texture? It's a nice example of how traditionally wintery colours can work for warm weather if you keep the complexion super-natural. Besides the non-makeuppy texture, I also like the seamless peachy blush. Other details that pull it together: chunky natural lashes, soft natural brows, touchable waves, a cool side braid. What I'd change: Just blending in the lip liner a little more.
What I love: Yara, you so pretty! She's been on this blog once before with a totally different—but equally stunning—beauty style. But I love this, with her natural hair texture, even more. Granted, she is wearing more foundation than the other celebs here, but her makeup is otherwise fantastic. I'm nodding in approval at the plum shadow, nude lips, soft lashes and full brows. What I'd change: Just a little less heavy on the cheeks.
What I love: With her hair up (instead of half-up), Alicia is showing off her wonderfully healthy-looking skin. I love natural makeup on her, especially the rosy lip stain, tawny blush and subtle shadows. The deep side part adds polish, and she didn't go too crazy on the false lashes this time. What I'd change: Nothing.
What I love: I've always thought Anna had perfect skin, but some makeup looks show it off better than others. Like this one! The dramatic shimmery-smoky shadow is an amazing contrast against her pale complexion, and brings out her naturally sparkly blue eyes. I also like the stronger blush look with matching peach gloss. What I'd change: Nothing.
What I love: Somehow, Margot pulls off bleach-blonde without looking like a generic Barbie doll. Of course, her flawless matte complexion helps. So does the sophisticated makeup, featuring an unusual pinky tone on the eyes and a slightly warmer shade (of similar intensity) on cheeks and lips. It's all nicely balanced, and framed by her darker, ashy brows and natural lashes. What I'd change: Nothing. (Does she have lip injections though?)
What I love: Karlie looks so effortlessly summery here. I love her skin texture the most, because the dewy parts look so natural—not like they came from a tube. With the soft bends in her hair, she could've come from a day at the beach and just swiped on the red lipstick for night. What I'd change: She looks incredible, but perhaps her under-eye concealer is a fraction too thick/light.
What I love: Paris' plump, dewy skin that's not powdered into oblivion (especially on her forehead). She did contour, but it's so subtle, I approve. I also like the restraint on the eye makeup, and the un-tweezed brows. What I'd change: The overdrawn matte lips with visible bottom lip liner! They're too much.
What I love: Chloë's bold red lip stain against creamy skin and flushed-from-within cheeks. Once again, such a beautiful contrast. I always love her big brushed-up brows, and her eyelashes look so fluffy. What I'd change: I still suspect they might use a bit too much foundation on her, or maybe she just has one of those faces where you can't control the creasing (under her eyes and around her mouth). I like her textured, flipped hair, but the ends are too piecey.
What I love: Here's more of Erin Ayanian Monroe's excellent work, this time on the other Fanning sister, Dakota. I'm obsessed with how the metallic blue shadow pops against her fresh, radiant, slightly freckled skin. As if that wasn't impressive enough, there's also glitter dusted over her part. What I'd change: Perhaps just a tad more concealer to even out the tone around her nostrils and mouth.
Who is giving you the most "skinspiration" this week?