May 29, 2024

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Drag queens Tynomi Banks and Kendall Gender share makeup tips

6 min read

Between artfully painting their faces to hold up for marathon performances under steamy hot lights and skilfully removing it all at the end of the night, drag queens know how to wield makeup and skin care for optimal results. That’s why we trust their beauty hacks above all others, and why we’ve reached out to three of Canada’s most beloved drag queens to ask for there can’t-live-without-them beauty products that help them slay a night (or day) of non-stop events.

The queen: Tynomi Banks

Tynomi Banks shares need-to-try beauty tips and picks.

In true Gemini fashion, Tynomi Banks pulls inspiration from two legendary catwalk superstars when tapping into her iconic drag persona: Tyra Banks and Naomi Campbell, if her name didn’t give them away. A household name for years in the Canadian scene and beyond (she’s been dubbed the “Dancing Queen of Toronto”), Banks appeared on season one of “Canada’s Drag Race.”

The magical moisturizer

“Charlotte Tilbury has this cream and when I tell you … my skin … Jesus Lord. It hydrates but it’s still lightweight. I use it after I shave, and my skin feels like silk. [When used under makeup] it makes my skin look natural and airbrushed. I swear by this cream.”

Charlotte Tilbury Magic Cream, $125 for 50 ml, charlottetilbury.com

Charlotte Tilbury Magic Cream, $125 for 50 ml, charlottetilbury.com SHOP HERE

The smoothing primer

“After applying my moisturizer in the drier areas of my skin, I apply this primer all over. When I’m performing and out for long hours, I need something that’s going to go the distance. When using this combination of Magic Cream and makeup primer, your makeup is on — stamped, sealed, delivered.”

Milk Makeup Hydro Grip Hydrating Primer, $49, sephora.ca

Milk Makeup Hydro Grip Hydrating Primer, $49, sephora.ca SHOP HERE

The workhorse concealer

“I used to not understand why my waterproof eyeliner would run after a long day until someone at Sephora told me to use this concealer to prep my skin. When you set it, it’s *on* there. When I apply it, the formula buffs out beautifully and it’s pure porcelain under my eyes.”

Make Up For Ever Matte Velvet Skin High Coverage Multi-Use Concealer, $39, sephora.ca

Make Up For Ever Matte Velvet Skin High Coverage Multi-Use Concealer, $39, sephora.ca SHOP HERE

The easy-off cleanser

“This makeup remover works wonders. Removing makeup can be harsh because of all the rubbing around your eyes, but this is so soft and gentle on your skin. You spray this on, and it instantly starts melting everything away. My makeup will literally be dripping off my face.”

One/Size by Patrick Starrr GO OFF Makeup Dissolving Mist, $31, sephora.ca

One/Size by Patrick Starrr GO OFF Makeup Dissolving Mist, $31, sephora.ca SHOP HERE

The signature scent

“I first received this perfume as a gift, but now I always buy it because I get so many compliments when I wear it. I got it during Pride and people always ask me about it. It has this sweet, almost vanilla baby powder [scent], it’s like a light musk moment. It just works so well with my skin.”

Canada's top drag queens share their need-to-try beauty tips and picks.

Jean Paul Gaultier La Belle Eau de Parfum, $158 for 100 ml, thebay.com SHOP HERE

The queen: Kendall Gender

Kendall Gender shares need-to-try beauty tips and picks.

With almost 10 years of doing drag under her belt, you’re sure to recognize Vancouver-based performer, host, model and activist Kendall Gender. Gender appeared on season two of “Canada’s Drag Race” and “Canada’s Drag Race: Canada vs. The World.” She cites her deep love of pop stars as her inspo; she calls out Beyoncé as her number one.

The fresh scent

“I discovered this when I was in the U.K. I like this one because, especially in drag, I find that sometimes when I spray perfume it can be a little bit overpowering, but this is just a body spray. Every time I spritz it on people always comment on how good I smell when I walk by. It lingers on my skin in a really nice and fresh way.”

Lush Body Spray in Twilight, $42, lush.ca

Lush Body Spray in Twilight, $42, lush.ca SHOP HERE

The drugstore gem

“I wear this moisturizer when I’m in drag because I find that sometimes other moisturizers feel too wet on my skin. This one has hyaluronic acid in it. If someone has sensitive skin or is prone to redness, this is a nice option because it’s unscented and feels refreshing.”

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Gel Cream, $30, shoppersdrugmart.ca

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Gel Cream, $30, shoppersdrugmart.ca SHOP HERE

The next-level eye palette

“I’m a brown eyeshadow girlie forever; I very rarely wear colour. Recently I found the best brown eyeshadow ever, it’s the viral TikTok palette, obviously. It was sold out forever but I finally got it. I’m obsessed with shade Matte 9, it’s a brownish red that looks great on my skin tone.”

Makeup by Mario Master Mattes Eyeshadow Palette, $66, sephora.ca

Makeup by Mario Master Mattes Eyeshadow Palette, $66, sephora.ca SHOP HERE

The long-wear setting spray

“This setting spray is the best in the world. I’ve tried every setting spray under the sun and this one is mattifying and completely waterproof. There’s even a viral video of Patrick Starrr swimming while wearing it.”

One/Size by Patrick Starrr On ’Til Dawn Mattifying Waterproof Setting Spray, $42, sephora.ca

One/Size by Patrick Starrr On ’Til Dawn Mattifying Waterproof Setting Spray, $42, sephora.ca SHOP HERE

The glowy bronzer

“I’m obsessed with this bronzer. It smells really good and the texture is so nice. I will put my contour powder on and then I apply this as a little layer over top. The brand gifted me some makeup when I worked with them on a campaign and I’ve been using the bronzer ever since.”

Annabelle Perfect Butter Bronze, $10, londondrugs.com

Annabelle Perfect Butter Bronze, $10, londondrugs.com SHOP HERE

The queen: Scarlett BoBo

Scarlett BoBo shares need-to-try beauty tips and picks.

Scarlett BoBo was on season one of “Canada’s Drag Race” and fans know her as a charming, passionate, fire-swallowing circus queen. Having recently relocated to L.A. after three years in Vancouver, the “part funny, part hot” star pulls her inspiration from pop stars like P! nk, video games, comic books, even street art and graffiti.

The cake-free foundation

“Dermablend is one of my favourite products to use. This foundation is lightweight but full coverage, it makes my skin feel like my skin and doesn’t feel cakey. I use the Leg and Body one — it comes in a nice big tube.”

Dermablend Leg and Body Makeup, $40 US, dermablend.com

Dermablend Leg and Body Makeup, $40 US, dermablend.com SHOP HERE

The ultimate matte lipstick

“Fenty Stunna lipsticks are incredible. I’m a matte girl, I don’t like a lot of gloss on my lips, unless I’m wearing pixie-cut hair. This is the best matte lipstick, it comes in black, red, burgundy — they’re so gorgeous.”

Fenty Beauty by Rihanna Stunna Lip Paint Longwear Fluid Lip Color, $36, sephora.ca

Fenty Beauty by Rihanna Stunna Lip Paint Longwear Fluid Lip Color, $36, sephora.ca SHOP HERE

The long-wear gloss

“You put this lip lacquer on, wait 15 seconds and then it feels completely set but it’s still shiny and glossy. It doesn’t transfer and it wears for 16 hours. It’s so good.”

Haus Labs By Lady Gaga Atomic Shake Long Lasting Liquid Lipstick, $34, sephora.ca

Haus Labs By Lady Gaga Atomic Shake Long Lasting Liquid Lipstick, $34, sephora.ca SHOP HERE

The sweet scent

“Pink Sugar is my go-to perfume. You can get it at the drugstore; I’m always in the 1995 shelf. It smells like cotton candy — it just smells so good! Whenever I hug someone, it just smells like bubble gum.”

Pink Sugar Eau de Toilette, $45 for 100 ml, londondrugs.com

Pink Sugar Eau de Toilette, $45 for 100 ml, londondrugs.com SHOP HERE

The no-budge setting powder

“This setting powder is amazing. It’s waterproof, it’s sweatproof, it’s cry-proof — for real. I will sweat all day and be like, ‘I feel so disgusting,’ and then I’ll look in the mirror and my face has not moved.”

Kim Chi Chic Puff Puff Pass Set & Bake Powder, $23, shoppersdrugmart.ca

Kim Chi Chic Puff Puff Pass Set & Bake Powder, $23, shoppersdrugmart.ca SHOP HERE

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Melissa Fejtek writes about beauty and lifestyle. Follow her on Instagram: @itsmelissaliliana

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