From glossy magazine pages to 30 second tutorials on Instagram, folks have been getting their beauty education one way or another. However, occasionally there are those makeup artists who leave their footprint on the beauty industry – whose work transcends their time and inspires beyond the editorial and red carpet looks. Below are makeup artists that have not only given us the building blocks to to our slay game but have created their mark via their portfolios, tutorials, and books.
The Australian makeup artist is best known for his time on RuPaul’s Drag Race as RuPaul’s makeup artist. Andersen’s work became so signature that his departure, after seven consecutive seasons, caused major backlash when fans of the show noticed a great difference in RuPaul’s aesthetic. Viewers instantly took to social media to plead for Andersen’s return. Since exiting the show Andersen has kept a low profile, but his work and his creations continue to serve as a reminder that nothing should get in the way of a mean contour. In the past, Andersen has worked with Christina Aguilera, Nicole Scherzinger, and Jennifer Lopez – with his work gracing the pages of Vogue, Cosmopolitan and i-D Magazine. Easy to say that we will continue to see more of his work.
Photo And Make Up Mathu Andersen
Kevyn Aucoin was undeniably one of the most influential makeup artists and is responsible for some of the 90s most memorable looks. Think Naomi Campbell on the runway, Cindy Crawford on her first Vogue cover, and Janet Jackson on tour. His aptitude for accentuating the already natural beautiful faces of his clients with his kit of tips and tricks won him the respect of his peers. He was and continues to be lauded by every model, celebrity and photographer he worked with for his artistry, humor and friendship. Aucoin was recognized for this work beyond the beauty world and in 1995 was presented with the CFDA award from the Council of Fashion Designers of America – the only makeup artist to ever be honored with the accolade. During his lifetime Aucoin also authored three books, The Art of Makeup , Making Faces and Face Forward , where he shared his knowledge in hopes of helping novice makeup users develop their own artistry. Aucoin passed in 2002, but his work continues to inspire makeup artists and makeup lovers today.
Many credit Way Bandy for actualizing the career of “celebrity makeup artist” during his time working with some of Hollywood’s biggest stars. His most active years took place during the 70s and 80s, an era in which he was responsible for the glam of actresses like Raquel Welch, Cher, Farrah Fawcett, and Elizabeth Taylor. To document his expertise Bandy penned Designing Your Face: An Illustrated Guide to Using Cosmetics and Styling Your Face. So, if your eyes are feeling a bit strained from scrolling through thousands of IG makeup videos (love them, but the peepers need occasional breaks) treat ya self to one of his books.
Cher on the cover of Vogue November 1974 Makeup by Way Bandy
Thomas de Kluyver @thomasdekluyver
Makeup artist de Kluyver is having a major moment. He already has an extensive resume: Rihanna’s Dazed and Confused cover, i-D Magazine’s The Female Gaze Issue fronted by model Adwoa Aboah , and Missoni’s FW17 campaign featuring Gigi Hadid, but he recently caught the attention of everyone during this year’s fashion week. De Kluyver was responsible for beauty at Jill Sanders, Kenzo, Boss, and perhaps the most memorable of all, Sies Marjan. Whether it was a stark circle of neon or a minimal wash of color over the eye – de Kluyver brought with him a burst of color and we are stoked to see what else he has up his sleeve.
Makeup up Thomas de Kluyver
Pat McGrath @patmcgrathreal
The British makeup artist is truly The Queen and Mother of it all – makeup, skin, adjectives (please refer to her Instagram captions for this). Her work within the fashion world is so vast and respected that she is rarely mentioned without iconic preluding her name. After years of working with the fashion world’s most prestigious and respected photographers, designers, and models, in 2015 McGrath finally came out with her own beauty line, Pat McGrath Labs. And we are forever indebted to her for this, because having a piece of her magic in our makeup arsenal is a gift. McGrath possess the skill and power to convert any look into something memorable, whether it’s a bold winged liner on an otherwise seemingly bare face or a prismatic work of art on the eyes.
Sir John @sirjohnofficial
Like many aspiring makeup artists Sir John began his career at a beauty counter, but after meeting Pat McGrath his path towards being one of the most in demand makeup artist truly began. Fast forward years later and his professionalism and skills have landed him in big places. Sir John is now a Consulting Celebrity Makeup Artist for L’Oreal Paris, counts Pat McGrath and Charlotte Tilbury as erstwhile mentors, was awarded InStyle’s Makeup Artist of the Year Award in 2016, and has been Beyoncé’s go-to makeup artist since 2010, casual . But when Sir John isn’t on the road with Queen B you can catch him backstage at runway shows or prepping models Joan Smalls and Chrissy Teigen for their red carpet appearances.