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Bella Interview: Lan Nguyen, Makeup Artist

Lan Nguyen is a London-based self-taught professional makeup artist most famous for creating edgy looks on the runways. I was lucky enough to interview her backstage before the Inbar Spector show during London Fashion Week.

I watched her in action and we gabbed about our shared love of makeup, her experience working with Michael Jackson and Madonna, and makeup tips for Asian women. For all the details,


How did you get started in the business?
I was working in PR while I was in school studying fashion. One day I was asked to help out with makeup for a photo shoot, even though I had no formal training, and they loved my work. I started to do makeovers and then filled in when they were short staffed. I loved it and when I eventually starting doing shows I worked with Pat McGrath. She became my inspiration to pursue makeup as a full-time career.

What do you see as the next big makeup trends for Spring and Fall?
The look for Spring is fresh skin and strong, bright, neon-colored lips. Fall makeup is grim, gothic and rich. You'll see a lot of contoured cheeks and eyelashes are back too. People aren't afraid to look a little bit more stylish.

What has been your favorite fashion week show to work on?
I'd have to say the most recent Gavin Douglas show. I loved creating a new take on old Hollywood glamour.

You work with all types of ethnicities. Can you give our Asian readers and makeup artists in training any advice?

  • Asians always want to do a smoky eye, but they often wind up looking like they are punched in the face. Because Asian eyes are small, try putting dark colored shadows in the socket line (crease) only.
  • Also, I recommend staying away from matte pastel shades as they tend to make Asian skin look ashy.
  • Lastly, any type of cream shadow is great. They look really nice on Asian skin tones.
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