I woke up yesterday morning with a huge pimple right next to my nose. I usually have pretty clear skin so a little breakout once in a while doesn't usually stress me out, but yesterday was different: I was being Kylie Jenner for the day and my skin had to be ~flawless~. Luckily, I had makeup artist Miguel Lledo (opens in new tab) ready to transform me into the youngest Jenner. And transform he did.
Thanks to Snapchat (opens in new tab) and Kylie's new website/app (opens in new tab), we get to see Kylie getting her makeup done all the time. I love watching her beauty tricks, but tbh, her makeup always seemed kind of impossible and a bit over the top for anyone besides Kylie Jenner. I did wonder though if doing Kylie's "glam" would make me feel any different. Would I suddenly up my Snapchat game like the ~queen~ herself? Would my friends be more into my selfies? Would I feel different? I had to find out.
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As glamorous as being a fashion and beauty editor sounds, the truth is, I'm not constantly going to tons of ~fancy~ events where people actually pay attention to what I look like. (Unless you count that time at Starbucks when the barista told me she liked my hair — thanks, girl!) Most of the time, I'm typing away on my laptop or sweating away behind the scenes styling a photo shoot, so my everyday look is much more low-key. I also don't wear a ton of makeup in every day life. I like to sleep — A LOT — so getting up early to perfect my cat-eye is just not in the cards. I usually just grab a tinted BB cream, some mascara, and lipstick that I also apply to my cheeks as I'm running out the door. I like to look like me, only a little bit fresher.
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But if I was going to do Kylie for the day, I had to go all out. That means, long hair and nails, foundation, concealer, blush, bronzer and highlighter for contouring, eyebrow gel, eyeliner, shadow, and fake lashes. Plus, of course, lipstick and lip liner, lot's of lip liner. I had to get up THREE FULL HOURS earlier to make all this happen. Who knew it really took that long? I started off the day already tired, but ready for my big transformation.
Step 1: Kylie Nails
First thing's first — I needed nails just like Kylie, so I hit up Valley (opens in new tab) in NYC's Chelsea neighborhood to get some Kylie talons. When I told my nail tech that I wanted nails like Kylie, she knew exactly what I meant. According to her, girls ask for Kylie's signature look all the time: pale pink in the trendy "coffin" shape. They're long, narrow, and squared off at the tip.
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While I did start to feel like Kylie as soon as I got them on (I tend to keep my nails on the shorter side, so faux nails were required), I also started panicking. "How am I going to get my contacts out? OMG — can I text?" I asked the nail tech. She recommended using my knuckles to text ("You get used to it.") and swiping my contacts out the side of my eye with my finger pads, being very careful not to scratch my eye. I tried my knuckles and the pads of my finger and found that I could in fact text, but just much slower. Having little-to-no patience, I resorted to getting Siri to text for me, which didn't always work as well as I hoped.
I wonder if this happens to Kylie too?
Step 2: Kylie Hair
Like me, Kylie's natural hair is mid-length, but she's always rocking extensions. I wanted to see what it's actually like, so I went to NYC's hair extension and blowout bar RPZL (opens in new tab) to get super-long tresses. Because, if you're being Kylie, a blowout just isn't enough. I needed a major change (after all, she changes her hair more than I change outfits), even if my only plan is to grab fro-yo or go to Starbucks.
I ended up going with the longest "tape" extensions they have, which took two hours to apply. They last up to six weeks, and look incredibly natural. It's pretty hot to wear so much hair and it feels really heavy on your head. I basically started sweating right away. Still, the results speak for themselves.
I def felt like a total pop star.
Step 3: Kylie Makeup
With my hair and nails set, it was time for makeup. Miguel started with a signature Kylie look of pale pink lips and dark eyes with lots of lashes. It took almost two hours for him to contour the heck out of my face. "I've never put this much makeup on one person," he said laughing. I couldn't believe after all that, I still had eyes and lips to go.
I blinked like a mad woman when he applied the double layer of fake lashes, which were so heavy. It felt like my eyes were closing on the spot. Still, when he was finally done, I looked good. He even showed me how to apply my own lip liner, tracing outside my lips, to get Kylie's major pout (especially after I messed it up from sneaking a snack — oops!).
Finally! Kylie's Glam
Five hours (!!) later, I had Kylie's glam. It might not be an exact match, but I felt like the reality star.
BEING KYLIE JENNER
It turns out, you can't really blame Kylie for all those selfies she takes. When someone works such magic on you, you can't stop taking pictures of the big reveal.
I'm getting used to my new look here — maybe a little too used to it.
Seriously. It's crazy how when you spent so much time getting ready, you obsess over two pics that look basically the same. It was getting embarrassing. When did I become so vain?
Freebies and Stares
I wanted to go grab my usual iced green tea at Sbux, but you know Kylie would change up her glam before she was photographed again. So, Miguel and I went back into the makeup studio to try another Kylie look — dark, brown-ish lips and smokey eyes.
It felt super dramatic for a middle-of-the-day Starbucks run, but this look was popular out in the real world. Everywhere I went, people were telling me how pretty I looked. Hey, the guy at Starbucks even thought so. He gave me a free iced green tea with my cookie, which I was totally excited about. But, I couldn't help but think how he never gave me any freebies when I was my regular, natural self.
It turns out, looking like a famous person makes it easier to hail a cab, which if you've ever been to NYC during rush hour, you know is basically impossible. I took the opportunity to snap a picture of all my imaginary fans.
I thought everyone loved my new look, until I met my friend for lunch and she was a bit horrified. "You have way, way too much makeup on," was the first thing she said. I assured her that even though it might look intense IRL, it looks flawless in photos. Still, good or bad, having so many people talk about my look made me super self-conscious, and I feel like I can now sort-of imagine how stressful it would be to be Kylie and have to deal with that (times a million!) every single day.
Becoming the Selfie Queen
I admit it. I spent most of my time taking selfies, though, just like Kylie. I'm not usually one to snap a million selfies, but doing Kylie's glam really turned me into a vain version of myself.
All of a sudden I'm the Snapchat Queen! If you don't Snap it, did it really happen?
Saying Bye to Kylie
Ok, it was fun, but it was also exhausting. My eyes were heavy from the lashes, my scalp itched from all the hair products and extensions, and my nails were driving me crazy. Plus, I was totally sick of looking at myself! Kylie and her sisters are SO scrutinized, and I can see now how stressful that would be. I noticed more of my flaws than ever before. I started obsessing about my under eye circles, and what angle keeps me from getting a double chin in selfies. It has to be really tiring to live like that all the time.
As much as I loved my glam, I was totally ready to remove it all at the end of the day. I usually just wash my face with a cleanser that also has makeup remover in it, but this makeup needed the big guns. It took six double-sided makeup remover pads to scrape down to my real skin.
My usually happy skin was pretty mad at me , so I slathered on moisturizer and lip balm. I actually got my contacts out without poking my eyeball (success!) and passed out in my bed. I really couldn't believe how physically, but also emotionally, exhausted I was.
Back to Me
I love fashion and beauty — I've devoted my career to it — but I noticed that I'm not into focusing on how I look all day long. It's just too exhausting. I definitely feel more confident just embracing my "flaws" and showing the world my natural self. Still, being Kylie Jenner for a day is fun, and I wouldn't mind trying some of her other looks — at least just for 24 hours.
I'm Liz, the fashion and beauty girl at Seventeen.com. I'm basically a human guinea pig, testing every beauty product that comes into the office and changing my hair all the time. I love cats (even though allergic) and I can't read enough YA novels.
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