Meet the Makeup Pro Behind Brie Larson’s Red Carpet Looks

It’s been a busy past few months of red-carpet outings for our spring issue cover star Brie Larson. The Academy Award-winning actress was jet-setting to premieres for her new film Kong: Skull Island, and finished a whirlwind awards-show circuit in February. With each appearance, Larson managed to garner headlines for hair and makeup looks that never missed a beat. “I’m a lover of history and ancient cultures, and it feels like such an old tradition: a group of women painting your nails, curling your hair, and getting you ready to leave,” Larson told us about the red-carpet beauty prep process. “It takes a couple of hours–you end up having two meals–but it’s fun!”

Brie Larson getting ready for a red carpet. Credit: @rachelgoodwinmakeup

Helping Larson dominate in the beauty department is celebrity makeup artist and NARS Cosmetics director Rachel Goodwin, who also counts Hollywood elite like Emma Stone, January Jones and Alicia Vikander as regular clients. “Brie is wonderful. I love to focus on her eyes,” said Goodwin, who’s been the actress’ red-carpet makeup guru for two years.

When it comes to mixing up the makeup enough to keep Larson’s looks feeling fresh and different from carpet to carpet, Goodwin has a strategy: “I always like to see the dress beforehand because it gives me time to consider my approach,” she explained. “I like to have at least two ideas to present to my client, and they can choose which one speaks to them. The makeup is meant to complement the dress.”

Rachel Goodwin doing Larson’s makeup for the 2016 Oscars. Credit: @rachelgoodwinmakeup

But of the many of red-carpet looks Goodwin has created for Larson this year alone, which has been her absolute favourite? “I loved Brie’s Academy Awards look. It was all about the lip,” she revealed. “My inspiration for her makeup was the strong, vibrant and empowered women that were often featured in Helmut Newton’s photography.”

Naturally, we had to get the intel on how we could mirror Larson’s red lip and smokey eye that paired so perfectly with her black velvet Oscar de la Renta dress at the awards show. Here, Goodwin spills all, down to the precise NARS lipstick and eyeshadow shades.

Larson’s makeup look at the 2017 Academy Awards.

1. Apply Pore and Shine Control Primer ($45) all over the face to prep skin.
2. Smooth Velvet Matte Skin Tint ($55) to the centre of the face and blend outwards to even out complexion.
3. Dab Soft Matte Complete Concealer ($37) under the eyes and as needed on any blemishes with a concealer brush.
4. Pat Single Eyeshadow in Blondie ($31) across upper eyelids.
5. Trace the lower lid’s waterline with Larger Than Life Eyeliner in Rue Bonaparte ($32) to open the eyes.
6. Blend Velvet Eyeliner in Mambo ($29) along the bottom lashline then curl lashes.
7. Define lips with lip liner then fill them in using Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Famous Red ($33).
8. Swipe Audacious Lipstick in Lana ($40) overtop.
9. Set the skin with Soft Velvet Loose Powder ($46).