Beauty

VMAs Beauty: Get Katy Perry's Denim-Appropriate Face

Makeup artist Jake Bailey spills the deets on the beauty look that accompanied Perry's Canadian tuxedo situation
VMAs Beauty: Get Katy Perry's Denim-Appropriate Face
VMAs Beauty: Get Katy Perry's Denim-Appropriate Face
AP Images

Katy Perry went all out with her Britney and Justin tribute look at Sunday's VMAs (right down to the denim purse), but the comparisons between the two pop stars stop there. "Katy had a very clear idea of what she wanted: a classic cat eye, big lashes and bright red lips," says makeup artist Jake Bailey, who did Perry's VMA look and has also worked with Gwen Stefani and Natalie Portman. "We hadn't done that Old Hollywood classic Katy glamazon look in a while, so it was fun to revisit it."

To start, Bailey prepped Perry's skin with Elemis Balancing Lavender Toner and applied La Mer The Moisturizing Soft Cream on her face and By Terry Rose Balm on her lips. He then buffed a "tiny amount" of CoverGirl Ready, Set, Gorgeous oil-free foundation in #215 all over her face and neck using a flat-tipped soft-bristle kabuki brush — for a "seamless airbrush effect." Ready, Set, Gorgeous concealer in light-medium was used to highlight her under-eye and cheekbones. Bailey sculpted and contoured the hollows of Perry's cheeks using the darker shade in the CoverGirl Clean Glow Bronzer Spices palette and used the lighter peachy shades on the apples of her cheeks.

Next he used the slightly shimmery taupe CoverGirl Flamed Out Shadow Pot in #355 in the creases of her eyelids and a pearlescent white #350 on her lids and brow bone. "I also used that same pearlescent shadow onto the ridges of her cheekbones to add a little extra glow," adds the makeup artist. He created a winged-out eye with an extra sharp tip using CoverGirl Bombshell Intensity Liner before finishing with several coats of CoverGirl Bombshell Volume Mascara and adding individual lashes for length.

Finally, Bailey lined Perry's lips with CoverGirl Lip Perfection Liner in Hot and applied lipstick in the same shade. "Then I did a little something different to pop the lips," he says. "I topped the lipstick with a metallic red eye shadow pencil from CoverGirl to give it a metallic sheen and an extra pow."

As for that red lip — versions of which we also spotted on Charli XCX, Gwen Stefani, Demi Lovato, Taylor Swift and Ariana Grande — Bailey says it's a reflection of the flamboyant music award show environment.

"It's the VMAs — it's a time to have fun and be glamorous with a red or berry lip. It's a powerful look."