We caught up with makeup artist to the stars, Rachel Goodwin, to discuss her new role as Nars’ Director of Pro Artistry and Red Carpet for North America, and to pick her brain about the industry and her career. Her bold choices, creativity, and editorial-eye caught the attention of some of the biggest names in Hollywood and gained her an extensive celebrity following including Emma Stone, Brie Larson, January Jones, Alicia Vikander, and Amber Valletta. Get to know the beauty expert as she reveals her top tips, advice and must-have products to get a five-star look.

By Mayillah Ezekiel

How long have you been a makeup artist, and how did you get your start in the beauty industry?

I’ve been a makeup artist for 24 years. I started taking makeup lessons at the San Francisco Opera and began with stage makeup. This was where I learned techniques that still inform my style today.

What do you love most about makeup?

I love how it can help a woman express herself and feel empowered.

What attracted you to get involved with the brand?

As an artist, I’ve always adored the philosophy that François Nars created this brand upon, and it’s always been an exciting cutting-edge kind of line that doesn’t really adhere to any of the rules. NARS is a makeup artist’s brand and it’s a brand I connect with as a woman who wears makeup. It just feels like the perfect fit for me and for the way I see beauty.

What are you most excited about your new role?

This is the most exciting thing, I can’t even tell you how thrilled I am. And for me, the next step in my evolution as an artist is to participate in a brand that is by an artist for artists. I’ve dreamed of being that kind of artist and being able to reach other people who want to do this job and want to be part of this industry — and I

will be able to have a bigger voice in that arena now.

What are your favourite NARS products?

NARS Velvet Matte Skin Tint. It’s like having a primer and foundation in one product. I find it to be an incredible texture on skin and helps me avoid using a lot of powder to finish the look. And then I also can’t live without the Creamy Radiant Concealer, so I don’t go places without it.

What is your favorite look to do on clients?

I approach each situation as a unique experience. I never go, “This is my style of makeup – it is what it is.” I get a sense of who they are as human beings because I want to make them feel like the absolute best version of themselves that they can be. It’s kind of like, “what can I do to bring your beauty out in the best possible way?”

Who are some of the people that have inspired you throughout your career?

My biggest artistic influences have been Serge Lutens, Way Bandy, Max Factor, and of course, FrançoisNars.

What is the most important beauty advice that you can give to women?

Trust your instincts. Enjoy the process. Beauty rituals are much more than just mastering techniques. They are meant to be enjoyed and to create a connection with the self. Creativity can happen where joy doesn’t exist.

Where do you get your main source of inspiration? 

I get inspiration everywhere, particularly from my travels.

Name an important and pivotal moment in your career.

Watching Emma [Stone] win the Oscar was just so emotional and so special because I’ve been on the journey with her for 10 years. I’ve worked on and promoted every film she’s ever made and La La Land was so special. It was so well deserved and to have been on a trajectory with someone for that long and to arrive at that place, it felt so special and once in a lifetime. That was really a highlight for me.

Do you have any advice for professionals aspiring to work in the fashion and beauty industries?

Stay true to your version of the world. Your perspective is the only thing that sets you apart from everyone else so guard your unique vision like your life depends on it!