Ciara. Jennifer Hudson. Monica. TLC. Lynn Whitfield. What do all of these beautiful, talented and famous faces have in common? They’ve all experienced the magic of celebrity makeup artist Yolonda Frederick. This makeup maven has become a go-to in the industry for celebrities who want to look flawless, fresh and nothing less. Here, Frederick spills industry secrets, including a detailed “how-to” on attaining Ciara’s signature glow.
A Royal Point of View: What are three essential items we should all be carrying in our makeup bags this summer?
Yolonda Frederick: Evian’s Facial Water Spray, a great sunscreen like SkinCeuticals’ Daily Sun Defense Moisturizing Broad-spectrum Sunscreen SPF 20 and a great tinted hydrating balm like Givenchy’s Hydra Sparkling Magic Lip & Cheek Balm. The bonus is that you get a nice tint for your cheeks too!
A Royal Point of View: Any summer beauty trends we should look out for?
YF: Less is more! For summer, a clean bronzy glow is necessary. Keep your application light and fresh with a tinted moisturizer and a sweep of bronzer for healthy radiant skin punched up with a nice shimmer to the cheek bones. Then add a touch of a fun lip and cheek stain. Bright-colored eyeliners like MAC’s Chromagraphic pencils are in for summer.
A Royal Point of View: What’s the best way to prevent our makeup from slipping and sliding all over the place when the warm weather and humidity start to roll around?
YF: Go for lighter coverage on your foundation choices. Try a tinted moisturizer like NARS’ Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer with Make Up For Ever’s Full Cover Concealer, which is waterproof. Follow up with a great bronzer like MAC’s Bronzing Powder in “Golden” instead of heavier foundations and powders.
A Royal Point of View: What was your first big break?
YF: I got a call many years ago from LaFace Records to do T-Boz for People Magazine. I was so nervous, but fortunately, she and I connected during this shoot and she started requesting me for all of her local shoots. When TLC released FanMail, she made it possible for me to tour with the entire group! My phone hasn’t stopped ringing since then.
A Royal Point of View: Speaking of TLC, how was it like working with the late Lisa “Left-Eye” Lopes?
YF: She was an amazing young lady. Always respectful and easy to work with. Sometimes she would fall asleep while I did her makeup.
A Royal Point of View: Is working with celebrities as glamorous as it seems?
YF: Working with celebrities isn’t as glamorous as it may seem. Sure, I get a bird’s eye view into inner circles and being backstage can be very exciting. However, I also consider my job service-oriented, and it’s always about your clients’ needs and concerns first. I’ve earned the privilege through hard work, experience and continually honing my skills to participate in a process that’s meant to create and maintain a certain image for a celebrity brand. This can create lots of pressure to deliver, so when I come to work, it’s time to roll up my sleeves and dig in instead rubbing elbows with the talent.
A Royal Point of View: What’s the best and worst part about your job?
YF: The best part of my job as a celebrity makeup artist is that it’s provided me with the opportunity to visit cities all over the world doing what I love the most and that’s making my clients feel beautiful. Ironically, the worst part about my job is the amount of travel required. It can be exhausting to travel for 18 hours to work and then have to arrive on set with fresh energy and be creative.
A Royal Point of View: You have strong ties to a program called, “Face to Face: The National Domestic Violence Project,” where you give makeup training and consulting to domestic violence survivors. Could you tell us more about that and how you became involved?
YF: I was connected through an amazing and gifted doctor Marc E. Yune, who’s a volunteer surgeon, former spokesman and fund-raising chairman for Face to Face. I was given an opportunity to participate in an extreme makeover through Dr. Yune. He invited me along with another friend Dina Giesler, the founder of “Atlanta Smiles Foundation, Inc.,” and we all donated our time and services to a very courageous abuse survivor. It was such an inspiring experience. To be able to add quality to a women’s life by simply making her feel confident about her self-image was truly a defining moment in my life. It validates one’s power to make a difference in someone’s life by a simple act of kindness.
A Royal Point of View: Would you ever be interested in launching your own cosmetics line in the future?
YF: Yes, I’m actually in the process of product development right now. In fact, I recently received my prototype, and it’s extremely fulfilling to finally see my idea come to life. My trade mark has been filed and is still in the application phase, so I have to wait until it has been completely registered to reveal the name, but it’s a very cool mobile makeup compact for girls on the go. It will contain various cosmetics items that can be tailored to appeal to each individual’s needs. My goal is to have it on the market by the beginning of the New Year!
A Royal Point of View: What’s the best beauty advice you ever received?
YF: To nurture your body from the inside. Drink lots of water, eat balanced meals, take care of your skin and exercise. This is just as important as using great beauty products!
To achieve a beautiful and natural-looking glow like Ciara’s, head over to Ebony.com.
Follow Yolonda Frederick on Instagram @YolondaFrederick