The simple secret behind Beyoncé’s budge-proof Coachella beauty look

Celebrity make-up artist Sir John reveals how he ensured Queen B's make-up would hold up during her high-energy stage performance

17 April 2019 - 12:23 By Toni Jaye Singer and Nokubonga Thusi
Beyonce Knowles performs on stage during the 2018 Coachella music festival in Indio, California.
Beyonce Knowles performs on stage during the 2018 Coachella music festival in Indio, California.
Image: Kevin Winter/Getty Images for Coachella

Netflix has just released Homecoming, a documentary which provides an in-depth look at Beyoncé's legendary 2018 Coachella performance.

Watching Queen B make history at this music festival, we couldn't help but marvel at her incredible dance moves and spectacular costumes, but we also had to wonder: how on earth did her make-up hold up? Most of us can't even make it through a day at the office without a smudge or two, let alone a marathon stage performance.

We asked Beyoncé’s make-up artist, Sir John, how he ensured the beauty look he created for the star for Coachella would be budge-proof. The secret, he says, is simple: it's all about layering.

"You have to start at a skincare level," says Sir John. If you know you're going to have a long day, he suggests you skip the moisturiser, especially if you have oily skin. 

If you go "dry" your foundation will have something to hold on to, he explains. "Even if you use the best moisturiser in the world, it's going to oxidise and slightly lift your foundation."

TIP: Got a severely dry skin and can't live without moisturiser? Use a water-based one.

WATCH | The trailer for 'Homecoming', a documentary about Beyoncé's celebrated 2018 Coachella performance.

Next the make-up guru applies a primer and foundation that doesn't contain a lot of oil. He sets this with powder. "Don't use a heavy pressed powder, but a sheer, loose powder because you still want the skin to breathe. If the skin is not breathing, your make-up is going to lift."

The concept of make-up products extends to the use of blush and eye shadow. First he applies a cream blush, the buffs in a powder blush. "I use creamy pot eye-shadows and then I put on three layers of eye makeup on top so nothing is moving."

To define the brows, Sir John suggests "using a brow pencil that is lighter than your brow colour as you want to just fill in the gaps, not add a weight to the brow.” As the pencil he uses is waxy, he sets it with powder too.

Sir John recently launched a trailblazing vegan makeup collection with Woolworths, called Sir John x WBeauty Volume 1.