Vincent Longo was born in Australia to Italian parents and later moved to the Italian Riviera and finally, to New York City. The makeup artist has worked with legendary models, including the likes of Cindy Crawford, Naomi Campbell and Heidi Klum; and his work has graced the covers of both national and international beauty magazines. He has since launched his own eponymous makeup line. LN caught up with him recently when he visited St. Louis to debut the line at Soft Surroundings.
Tell us about your line.
I take a problem-and-solution approach to the line. For every problem that you’re trying to fix, I try to create a solution. A woman can transcend her beauty when she knows how to solve these problems and diminish the negatives she sees in her appearance.
What are some examples?
This time of year, many people tend to have a more sallow complexion and they want to brighten it. Using the right techniques, you can achieve an inner glow that stays on without migrating into fine lines, and you can do it easily at home. I do this by applying a cheek stain under the foundation. To complement that, you might use a lip stain—that’s a great base that lasts all day. Then, you can apply your pencil, lipstick and a gloss over it.
Each product in my line also has a particular benefit to it. My cream-to-powder foundation, which is made using seaweed and water injected together, is very hydrating and holds moisture, but it also allows the skin to breathe without caking on or feeling heavy. The liquid concealer contains peptides to remove puffiness and under-eye circles. Likewise, the mascara has marine extracts to thicken and lengthen lashes up to 30 percent in six months. There’s an instant effect, but you can also see the benefits over time. And everything is made with no parabens or chemical preservatives. I’m working to make the entire line gluten-free as well.
What’s more fun—working with celebrities or with everyday people?
I have a great time whether I’m working with Sigourney Weaver or with you—this job allows me to be creative and have fun all the way across. I’m passionate about my work—it’s my life. I’m fortunate to be able to cross over into all kinds of creative pursuits. I even do the photography for our products! It’s never dull.
My goal is to help each person maximize the full potential of her beauty. When I teach master classes, I guide them, but they accomplish everything themselves. You have no idea the confidence that creates, and how good they feel about themselves—it’s so empowering.
How can people get that excitement working with their own look and avoid falling into a beauty rut?
Yes, you get into a comfortable routine, but always try to break out of it a little bit and try something new. When I work with a client, I don’t want to shock the user; I want to hold their hand and help them see themselves in a better light. If you’re in a rut, you can start by using seasonal colors. Think of your makeup like an accessory: Just as you refresh your wardrobe for the season, you want to refresh your whole image.
How can women take their look up a step for a special occasion like Valentine’s Day or a big night out?
First, make sure to contour your brows. That will refine your look. You also want to really define the upper bow of your mouth, which is something a lot of people don’t think much about. Third, make sure you get coverage under and inside your eyes—without this, your look won’t appear refined and complete. With all three of those pieces together, you’ll look polished.