Lupita Nyong’o Shares Her Beauty Secrets


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Erik Madigan Heck/Trunk Archive

The Oscar winner and face of Calvin Klein Women shares her lipstick tricks and admits to breaking the cardinal skin-care rule (skipping SPF!).

Perfume Notes

I wear fragrance every day because my mom wore fragrance every day. It’s just part of my routine: Put on deodorant and put on a scent. My first reaction when I smelled Calvin Klein Women ($84) was relief. Because I actually really liked it, and having to pretend that something is desirable to you is very uncomfortable. It has a floral quality, but I like that there’s an interesting combination of cedarwood and eucalyptus. I went to a school that had a lot of eucalyptus trees on the grounds, so it reminds me of my childhood.

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Hair Staples

I’m currently wearing my hair in twist braids. I go to Marva Stokes for that. I also work very closely with hairstylist Vernon François; he’s so passionate about natural Afro hair. I use
his Scalp Nourish~Ment Braids and Locs Spray ($24) to add moisture and oil back to my scalp. My hair type drinks it up.

Kitchen Confidential

I love to cook, and I love Nigerian food. My favorites are e.bà and egusi. And moi moi—it’s made of steamed, ground black-eyed peas, and sometimes it has shrimp in it, sometimes egg. It’s so good.

Training Day

I like to exercise with my own body strength. And I love to jump rope—it’s so easy to travel with. I also work with a trainer, Kirsty God so, in New York, doing high-intensity interval training fused with Pilates.

“I keep my skin-care routine simple; otherwise I wouldn’t do it.”

Stress Reliever

I’ve been interested in meditation for a long time, but I’ve only now started in earnest. I do it on my own, without an app or anything.

Face First

I keep my skin-care routine simple; otherwise I wouldn’t do it. Face wash, toner, then natural oils—such as calendula—before moisturizer. Calendula is very, very soothing
and really good for healing my skin when it’s had a lot of sun exposure. I intend to use sunblock, but I don’t always.

Skin Saviors

I have a very dry complexion, so I use avocado oil to wipe off my makeup. It’s gentle and doesn’t strip my skin. I’m an ambassadress for Lancôme, and I love the Lancôme Advanced Génifique Hydrogel Melting Mask ($15), which is great for hydrating. I travel so much that it’s actually quite vital, just to replenish the moisture.

Eye Opener

Right now the makeup product I’m loving is Lancôme Monsieur Big Mascara ($25). It’s really, really black, and that’s great for me because I’m dark. Oftentimes, mascaras are on the grayer side, so the contrast isn’t as sharp against my skin.

Lipstick Lesson

My makeup artist, Nick Barose, taught me how to apply lipstick better. You have to start from the middle of your mouth and work outward, rather than the other way. I’d been doing it the opposite way forever. His method gives you more control and makes the application more even.

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From left: Lancôme Monsieur Big Mascara ($25); Lancôme Advanced Génifique Hydrogel Melting Mask($15); Scalp Nourish~Ment Braids and Locs Spray ($24); Calvin Klein Women ($84);

Courtesy of brands

This article originally appeared in the October 2018 issue of ELLE.

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