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The 15 Met Gala Beauty Looks You Need To Get A Closer Look At

By Marissa DeSantis

It wasn’t held on its usual first Monday in May, but the 2021 Met Gala still brought together some of the biggest names in pop culture and fashion. After a brief hiatus due to the pandemic, New York City’s Metropolitan Museum of Art officially kicked off part one of the Costume Institute’s exhibition, In America: A Lexicon of Fashion with an abundance of crystal-embellished gowns, tributes to Old Hollywood, and mixes of red, white, and blue.

Ahead, we’ve rounded up the evening’s standout beauty moments, alongside some of the products the pros used to create the Met Gala-ready looks.

1

Kaia Gerber

 

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I don’t think there’s a greater fashion icon than Bianca Jagger, so Kaia Gerber’s spot-on tribute to the actress turned human rights advocate is my personal favorite. Wearing a custom Oscar de la Renta dress in the style of Jagger’s black strapless design from the 1981 Met Gala, Gerber went all in with her beauty look, too.

Guido Palau styled the model’s shoulder-length hair into glossy retro waves with a deep side part, and makeup artist Nina Park kept the makeup classic using YSL Beauty (Gerber is an ambassador for the brand, and we spotted the All Hours Foundation, The Slim Velvet Radical Matte Lipstick, and the classic Touche Éclat Concealer Pen on her Instagram).

2

Gigi Hadid

 

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You can always count on a hair makeover or two at the Met Gala, and Gigi Hadid sported the color of the season with her fiery red ponytail that was colored by Keith Shore. Styled by Esther Langham, Hadid’s polished ponytail was accessorized with a black and crystal Prada hair clip (the model also wore a Prada gown). A ’60s style cat eye by Erin Parsons added drama to Hadid’s makeup, which was achieved by custom blending cream shadows for a ‘Prada Blue’ finish (that Hadid helped to create).

To further define the eyes with exaggerated wings along the upper and lower lash lines, Parsons used Maybelline Hyper Easy Waterproof Liquid Liner in Pitch Black and Maybelline TattooStudio Eyeliner Pencil in Deep Onyx.

3

Emily Blunt

 

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We saw quite a few sparkly moments at this year’s gala, but none of them could quite compete with Emily Blunt’s Miu Miu dress and headpiece combo (Vogue reported that her dress contained 132,240 micro crystals). Adding even more shine, Blunt channeled Old Hollywood actress and inventor Hedy Lamarr with her starry headpiece (styled by Laini Reeves) and metallic eye makeup.

“We wanted to keep her makeup understated but still fun,” makeup artist Jenn Streicher said via email of balancing out the drama of Blunt’s dress. To get the color just right, Streicher blended shades of the Chantecaille Luminescent Eye Shade Eyeshadow in Rhino, Pangolin, and Lion across the lids, along with Chantecaille Les Perles Metallic Eyeliner in Argent.

4

Megan Fox

 

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For her first Met Gala, Megan Fox went for a ’50s pin-up glam, that included faux fringe and a red lip. “To incorporate the pin-up vibe, I decided to add a modern, super-blunt fringe inspired by Bettie Page,” hairstylist Andrew Fitzsimons wrote on Instagram. The rest of Fox’s hair was slicked back into a high, waist-length braided ponytail, while makeup artist Ash Kolm made a classic red lip the focal point of the actress’ makeup (using Buxom Power Plumping Lip Liner in Real Red and Buxom Full Force Plumping Lipstick in Winner).

5

Normani

 

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Matching her eye makeup to her gold organza and taffeta Valentino dress, Normani’s Met Gala beauty was all about the “glow,” according to her makeup artist, Rokael Lizama. Haus Laboratories Glam Attack Liquid Shimmer Powder in Legend was the secret behind her golden eye, with the brand’s Liquid Eye-Lie-Ner in Punk used to create a winged shape along the top lash line. To showcase the seriously sparkly eye, Yusef slicked Normani’s hair back into a structured knot, which also better showcased the singer’s stunning Lorraine Schwartz necklace.

6

Yara Shahidi

Yara Shahidi drew inspiration from entertainer and activist Josephine Baker when dreaming up her Met Gala look. Wearing custom Dior (Shahidi is an ambassador for the brand), the Grown-ish star’s hair was also retro inspired. “We styled the cap with her natural hair underneath, adding curls for a classic finish,” hairstylist Fesa Nu wrote on Instagram.

Makeup artist Emily Cheng focused on burgundy tones, using a mix of shades from the Dior 5 Couleurs Couture Eyeshadow Palettes in Rouge Trafalgar, Black Bow, and Pink Corolle for a colorful smoky eye and Rouge Dior Refillable Lipstick in Ardente Velvet topped with the Rouge Dior Refillable Lip Balm for a brick red lip.

7

Eiza González

 

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Eiza González took notes from Old Hollywood actress Ava Gardner, from her custom red Versace gown to her retro waves and bold lip. Hairstylist Renato Campora worked with Fekkai hair products to create the polished ’50s style, while makeup artist Jenna Kristina used Buxom Hold The Line Waterproof Liner to create an elongated cat eye and Buxom Power Line Plumping Lip Liner in Powerful Plum with Buxom Full Force Plumping Lipstick in Influencer for the actress’ burgundy lip.

8

Kacey Musgraves

 

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Kacey Musgraves and her team never fail on the red carpet (remember the singer’s Moschino Barbie look at the 2019 Met Gala?). For this year’s American fashion themed event, they kept things classic with a slight country twist with Musgraves in a custom Ralph Lauren metallic silver skirt, black turtleneck, and riding boots. Musgraves’ beauty look was just as timeless, with Giovanni Delgado styling her long hair in a center part with barely-there waves meant to mimic the ripples of her skirt.

Makeup artist Moani Lee used Pat McGrath Labs to create a soft makeup look, but ultimately, turned her attention to skincare prep. “We kept the focus on skin and gorgeous freshness with a focus on warmth and all over glow,” Lee said via email, noting that she used 111 Skin’s Rose Gold Illuminating Eye Mask, Sub-Zero De-Puffing Eye Duo, and Rose Gold Radiance Booster on Musgraves prior to applying makeup.

9

Mindy Kaling

 

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From the front, Mindy Kaling’s hair may have looked like your average low bun. But hairstylist Marc Mena‘s detailed shot showed it was anything but with its knotted structure that enhanced Kaling’s highlights. “It’s been such a long time since we’ve had something fun or exciting to go to that we wanted to do something interesting,” Mena said via email of the elaborate updo. Before he began twisting and pinning Kaling’s hair into place, Mena prepped her hair while it was still damp, applying Better Not Younger Lift Me Up Hair Thickener and Better Not Younger No Remorse Heat Protection & Taming Spray before blow drying and curling the hair for texture.

For the makeup, Janice Kinjo went with a ’90s-inspired look choosing eggplant eyeshadow to complement Kaling’s Tory Burch dress and a dark nude lip using Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat Lip Liner in Pillow Talk Intense and Charlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution Lipstick in So 90s.

10

Hailey Bieber

 

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Hailey Bieber is the queen of street style, so it’s no surprise that she brought those same effortlessly cool vibes with a slightly elevated spin to the Met Gala. To give Bieber’s Saint Laurent gown a more casual, California feel, Jen Atkin kept her hair down and styled in barely-there waves.

Mary Phillips took a less-is-more approach when it came to makeup, too, focusing on radiant skin (courtesy of Pat McGrath Labs Skin Fetish Highlighter & Balm Duo in Goldenand Pat McGrath Skin Fetish Sublime Skin Highlighting Trio in Fine Gold 003) with just a hint of color on the lips and washed out bronze shimmer on the eyes.

11

Zoey Deutch

 

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Zoey Deutch gave us a monochromatic lavender look inspired by the disco era of the 1970s. Gregory Russell gave Deutch ultra-long hair that was parted down the middle, and makeup artist Jenna Kristina matched the actress’ Swarovski crystal embroidered Versace dress with sparkly lilac eyeshadow and a classic black cat eye from Buxom.

“We packed La La Lavish on the lid and added Invite Only to her crease,” Kristina said on Instagram. “Silk Sheets mixed with Cashmere Cravings to pop her brow, [and] Hold The Line Waterproof Liner to draw a full dramatic cat eye,” completed the look, according to Kristina.

12

Taylor Hill

 

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Model Taylor Hill took her Met Gala beauty inspiration from Audrey Hepburn’s 1957 film, Funny Face. Danielle Priano recreated Hepburn’s slicked back bun on Hill, pinning a jeweled headpiece as the finishing touch, which was almost identical to the piece Hepburn wore. In keeping with the mood, makeup artist Kelsey Deenihan focused on playing up Hill’s eyes (and Hepburn-esque full brows) with neutral eyeshadow and a crisp cat eyeliner using shades Letterhead and Stylo from the Byredo Eyeshadow Palette in Corporate Colours and Byredo Technical Black Eyeliner.

13

Gemma Chan

 

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English actress Gemma Chan chose to honor Chinese-American actress Anna May Wong with her Met Gala look. Wearing a black and lime green dress by Prabal Gurung, which included dragon embroidery traced from the Met Museum’s own collection, Chan’s makeup and hair (and even her crystal-embellished nails by Betina Goldstein) were designed to perfectly match. Makeup artist Daniel Martin created a dramatic eye with shimmering green shadow and black cat eye liner, while Owen Gould styled her hair into sculptured braided hoops with Wong’s signature blunt bangs.

14

Emily Ratajkowski

 

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Model and new mom Emily Ratajkowski let her lacy red Vera Wang gown do the statement-making at the gala. Opting for undone waves, hairstylist Jennifer Yepez added extra volume and length to Ratajkowski’s hair with the help of Hidden Crown Clip-Ins 2 and 3 hair extensions, while makeup artist Linda Hay focused on bronzed skin, sculpted cheekbones, and a soft nude-pink lip using Pat McGrath Labs MatteTrance Lipstick in 1995.

15

Kendall Jenner

 

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Technically, this was Kendall Jenner’s afterparty look, but the classic red lip and oversized lashes combo makeup artist Mary Phillips chose is one we’re saving to recreate for the holidays. To complete the look, Jen Atkin gave the reality TV star a bouncy high ponytail with a clean part down the center and a small section of hair left loose and wavy at the front. For the gala itself, Jenner and her team took inspiration from actress Audrey Hepburn’s major makeover as Eliza Doolittle in the 1964 film, My Fair Lady.

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