Charli XCX Shares Her Two-Step Guide to Perfectly Lived-In Eyeliner


“I’m just learning to really stick to my routine,”  Charli XCX tells Vogue, as she begins to layer serums and SPF onto her skin. Though the 29-year-old singer-songwriter—who recently announced her new podcast, Best Song Ever—may be most well known for making statements in the beauty department, from graphic cat eyes to dip-dyed lengths, she has finally come around to the importance of a catered-to complexion too. “I actually got a bout of adult acne when I was 25,” she recalls. “That’s when I was like, Oh, skin care…I should probably learn about that.” Now, thanks to a process of trial and error, she’s accrued an arsenal of hero products that work for her face. Think: a reusable cotton pad soaked with Dr. Jart+’s Dermaclear Micro Water; a hydrating eye cream from Barbara Sturm; Ole Henriksen’s vitamin C serum; and, perhaps most importantly, a dollop of La Mer’s rich moisturizer, of which Charli says, “When my friend told me, ‘You should use it, it’s going to change your life,’ she was right.”  

Unlike with her skin care, she’s actually deescalated her makeup application in recent years. “When I was in school, I was super emo, and the only thing I could do was huge black eyes, kind of like raccoon eyes,” she remembers with a laugh, adding that these days, she uses a lighter touch to achieve her go-to, perfectly lived-in liner. “I always found that when I did go out and sleep in my eye makeup, it would always look better in the morning,” she continues as she drags a black pencil along her lower lash line and upper lid before removing it with a Q-tip dipped in Lancôme’s Bi-Facil formula. The effect? “It’s like you just woke up and had the best night ever,” she says.

The most important step of her getting-ready equation comes next: brushing her Frida Kahlo–esque arches up and out with a spoolie spritzed in strong-hold hair spray. “If I didn’t have time to do any makeup ever at all but I could do one thing, it would be just doing my brows,” she reveals. Today, however, under no such constraints, she then turns to a creamy Milk Makeup blush, which she swipes across the bridge of her nose and the tops of her cheeks, followed by Glossier’s Generation G and Charlotte Tilbury’s Birkin Bag lipsticks. Laneige Sleeping Mask, dotted onto her pout with her pinky finger, provides the finishing touch—but she’ll continue to reach for the ultra-moisturizing, berry-scented balm throughout the day. As she puts it, “I’m just addicted to this.”  

Below, shop Charli XCX’s Beauty Secrets. 

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OLEHENRIKSEN Truth Juice Daily Cleanser

Dr. Jart+ Dermaclear Micro Water

Dr. Barbara Sturm Eye Cream

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OLEHENRIKSEN Banana Bright Vitamin C Serum

La Mer Crème de la Mer Moisturizing Cream

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Algenist SUBLIME DEFENSE Ultra Lightweight UV Defense Fluid SPF 50

Charlotte Tilbury The Classic Eye Powder Eyeliner Pencil

Lancome Bi-Facil Double-Action Eye Makeup Remover for Sensitive Skin

Pat McGrath Labs Eyedols Eye Shadow

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Salon Care Extra Hold Hair Spray

Milk Makeup Lip + Cheek Cream Blush Stick

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Glossier Generation G Sheer Matte Lipstick

Charlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution Lipstick

Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask

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