The 13 Best NARS Products That Celebrity Makeup Artists Actually Use On Clients — & Themselves
Every makeup obsessive has that one product that will always hold a special place in their heart. For me, it's Orgasm — that cult favorite blush from NARS with the wondrous name — which I'll always remember as my first real acquaintance with a cosmetics brand. Fast forward, and my love affair with NARS has only grown deeper with every sleek, black-packaged launch. But as any brand loyalist knows, the best NARS products go far and beyond that iconic cheek tint: The base products, lipsticks, eyeshadows, and mascaras are all, well, orgasmic.
Shanghai Express, Jungle Red, and Casablanca were among the 12 lipstick shades imagined 25 years ago by renowned makeup artist and photographer François Nars. The resulting brand, which befittingly took on the innovator's surname, eventually grew to be one of the largest makeup powerhouses in the world with some of the most sought-after multi-use formulas, and a brand mission of inclusivity that existed long before the post-Fenty Beauty era.
So with 2019 marking a quarter of a century, what better way to commemorate another year around the sun than even further expanding its reach into the beauty industry? The brand's first-ever fragrance, Audacious, a scent created in a magical partnership with distinguished French perfumer Olivia Giacobetti, arrived right in time for fall with the dazzling disco-inspired Studio 54 holiday collection following closely behind.
While NARS is celebrating a quarter of a century with exciting new launches, there seems to be no better time to round up three of Hollywood's most prominent makeup artists who all swear by an overwhelming slew of the brand's products to keep celebs looking their best.
Why do they keep coming back, you ask? Well when you can find the trifecta of an Orgasm, Sex Machine, and a Climax in one place, why would you ever want to stray? (Those are all product names, for the record). However, for Quinn Murphy, whose clients include Maggie Gyllenhal and Nathalie Emmanuel, he keeps his stash chalked full because there's no formula that NARS hasn't mastered. "From the perfect neutral to the most saturated hue they are exquisitely balanced."
"I love Dolce Vita in all of its forms. It's the most perfect raisin ruddy brick rose," Murphy tells TZR.
What one NARS product would makeup artist Ash K Holm take with her if she were stranded on a deserted island? Something to make her glow, of course. "Definitely the Laguna Bronzer, because I could use it on my eyes and face to keep me looking bronzed and healthy," Holm, who works with Kim Kardashian and Shay Mitchell, says.
Holm knows a thing or two about creating a makeup look that will stand up against harsh flash and bright lights. "NARS is always beautiful on the carpet, especially the Radiant Creamy Concealer because it’s creamy, long-wearing, and hydrating."
Holm's go-to complexion product? "The Sheer Glow Foundation because it works on all skin types and there’s a shade for everyone."
Ask Joanna Simkin, artist to Issa Rae and Hannah Bronfman, what her favorite NARS product is, and she'll confidently tell you her answer. "The Soft Matte Concealer, hands down! It has colors for everybody and skin-like formulas."
Simkin's kit is never without the Natural Radiant Longwear Foundation. "Complexion is the biggest draw for me," she says. "NARS is so trustworthy as far as shade range and formula, so I always keep it stocked."
"I recently did Kristine Froseth for a premiere. She wore an orangey-red dress and I didn’t want to make the look too matchy," Murphy says. "I decided to do the opposite color than what she was wearing: green. I have her a smokey eye using Night Porter Eyeshadow and the Night Porter Eyeliner Pencil. The juxtaposition of color and the complementary colors looked so chic, unexpected, and sexy."
Any makeup lover knows that a truly great makeup collection requires a universal brown shadow. Murphy's go-to is the matte shadow in Coconut Grove, which he describes as the "best dark brown ever."
Murphy's secret to a bold eye? A pigmented and smooth base color. "The cream shadows are great for building an intense look," he emphasizes. "I use the darker colors as a base for a smokey eye."
If there's one thing we know about Holm, it's her love for a killer lash moment. When she's looking for mega-volume and length, she turns to the Climax Mascara for a buildable and intense, no-smudge look.
If you were tuned into the 2019 Primetime Emmy Awards on Sept. 22, chances are you caught 'This Is Us' actress Melanie Liburd lighting up the red carpet. "Her look was heavily NARS," Simkin reveals. "I used Dragon Girl on the lip for a bold statement."
If you're looking for a simple and understated gloss for your day-to-day, Simkin's a huge fan of the brand's gloss formula in the shade Stolen Kisses.