You've been there before: You're scrolling through your Instagram feed when you see your favorite celeb post about their favorite new product — a face serum, vitamins that will make your skin brighter, or a specialty food service. You can't help but want to be like the stars, but are the products worth it? In Elite Daily's I Tried series, we put it all to the test. We're trying those products as well as celebrities' health and wellness tips, recipes, and life hacks. We'll do the leg work and tell you what living like your fave star is really like.
When it comes to being multi-talented, Loren Gray is the poster child. She's a TikTok superstar, a YouTube creator, a recording artist, and — thanks to her appearance in Taylor Swift's "The Man" video — an actress. If you're a diehard fan of hers, you'll know she's also a total beauty guru. No matter what platform she's slaying on, her makeup looks are always flawless. It turns out, she does it all herself, and in a 2019 YouTube video titled "My Everyday Makeup Routine," she let fans in on a ton of her beauty secrets, detailing her daily process from start to finish, and sparing no details. As a mega-fan of the starlet, it was high time I tried Loren Gray's makeup routine out for myself.
Gray is by no means a beauty blogger, but her makeup tutorial could have convinced me otherwise. She not only uses top of the line products, but she makes applying them look effortless (which, I learned, it's not).
From primer and moisturizer to false lashes, Gray shouts out each brand she uses in the video, so fans could use the exact same products she does, if they want. Since my loyalty to the beauty products I use runs pretty deep, I used what I already had on-hand for the most part, and you can definitely do the same and still get Gray's look. After all, a whole new Sephora haul can cost a pretty penny.
Gray literally never has a hair or eyelash out of place in her videos, so I knew I knew I was in store for a challenge when I set out to recreate her everyday look. Here's how I went from fresh-faced to full-blown Gray glam:
1. Prep & Foundation
Gray emphasizes the importance of moisturized skin in her tutorial, so that came first and foremost. She seems to know the areas that need Farmacy's Honey Drop Lightweight Moisturizer the most, focusing on her cheeks, and leaving the rest of her face alone. She admits the parts of her face that tend to break out don't need any added moisture. From there, Gray slathers on Fenty Beauty Pro Filt'r Instant Retouch Primer.
Interestingly, Gray puts her foundation (Estée Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place) on before layering on concealer. In her video, she Gray jokes she never knows if she's using the right shade, and just like that, I related to her on a whole new level. The pale-girl struggle is hard, y'all.
Gray uses not one concealer by Nars, but two (a darker shade first, then a lighter one), as part of her daily routine. After foundation, she puts it under her eyes in a triangle shape, and then dabs it over any acne spots she has. Concealer can look a little scary if it's not well-blended, but Gray seamlessly smooths hers out with a beauty blender until it looks perfect.
Gray doesn't want her face makeup going anywhere, so she sets it using DragunHeart Transformation Face Powder. She starts off by focusing on the area under her eyes, using multiple layers of powder to lock in her concealer and foundation underneath. She does a quick sweep of her forehead and chin as well.
I don't always have time to put on foundation, concealer, and setting powder, but with all three, I already felt like a million bucks.
2. Lip Moisturizer
When it comes to Gray's beauty look, moisturizer isn't just for the skin. Gray uses Fresh Sugar Lip Serum to keep her pout moisturized. My lips aren't particularly dry, but I dabbed a bit of lip balm on before continuing on.
Gray has a two-step process when it comes to defining her brows. The star admits she has sparse, light-colored brows, so she thickens them and darkens them a tad with a pencil and gel from Benefit.
"I don't have a lot of eyebrows," Gray explains in her video, and TBH, I felt that after over-waxing mine in high school. Plus, like Gray, my brows are actually really light in color, so I filled mine out as much as hers and loved how they looked.
4. Eyeshadow & Liner
Gray sticks to neutral tones when it comes to her eyeshadow, using a mix of shades from the Tartelette In Bloom palette. She sweeps it across the crease of her eyelids, and says she "doesn't do much else for eyeshadow."
According to Gray, the "most important" part of her makeup routine is her eyeliner, which totally checks out. Her dramatic winged liner has become her signature over the years; it's also the part of her tutorial that made me the most nervous. That said, if winged liner doesn't make you at least a little apprehensive, you're probably a professional.
When applying, Gray actually starts from the middle of her eye and works her way out, later going back to fill in the inner corners. This is a technique I've always used myself, because making it a multi-step process leaves less room for error. I gave her dramatic winged liner look my best attempt, and, thankfully, it turned out fine.
When it comes to lashes, Gray's motto is go big or go home. In addition to mascara, she wears a set of false lashes in her everyday look, favoring either Lilly Lashes or Ardell. However, I didn't have falsies on-hand, as they aren't something I would ever consider for my everyday look, so I decided to just pump up the mascara instead. (Gray's go-to brand is Marc Jacobs.)
6. Bronzer & Highlighter
Every full-face needs a few finishing touches, and Gray pulls her beauty look together with bronzer, blush, and a shimmering highlighter. She sweeps her bronzer across her cheekbones, nose, and forehead, and then uses it to contour her nose as well. For good measure, she adds a pop of blush to the highest point of her cheekbones. She then sweeps her fave highlighter from Fenty Beauty across her face.
Pro tip from Gray: Dab a bit of highlighter on the inner corners of your eyes. "It opens your eyes and brightens them," she says. After trying that trick myself, I realized how right she was — my eyes popped.
After applying my bronzer, blush, and highlighter, I felt like a glowing goddess, though, admittedly, I may have overdone it on the highlighter.
Lastly, Gray dabs on a clear gloss before starting her day. She says she switches it up at times, but in her video, Gray uses her Tarte Cosmetics Sugar Rush gloss.
Personally, I'm much more of a bold lip type of gal, but since I was already rocking Gray's ultra-defined style of eye makeup, I was happy to try a more subtly colored gloss this time around.
Aside from the falsies, most of Gray's daily makeup habits are pretty similar to mine. I loved starting with a strong base of moisturizer and primer, because, IMO, good skin is half the beauty battle. On the other hand, I'm not the biggest fan of heavy eyeliner. So, while I tried out her super-bold eye look for the day, I'm going to keep mine thinner and close to the lash line going forward.
In her tutorial, Gray admits to dropping serious cash on beauty products, and while we use a lot of the same brands, I'm a big fan of incorporating several budget-friendly beauty options into my routine as well. As you can tell from my replication of her process, you can still achieve a Loren Gray-inspired look without using the exact products she uses.
From start to finish, Gray's beauty routine took me just over 30 minutes to complete. Some days, I simply don't have the time to apply a full face of makeup like this, so, while this may be her everyday look, this would be more of a weekend look for me.
All in all, I felt amazing amazing after my Gray-inspired glow-up, and was definitely inspired to document it with a few selfies. TikTok fame, here I come.