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Takeaways From Karen Gillan’s Redhead Makeup Tutorial with Vogue

Learn Some New Redhead-Focused Beauty Tips!

Scottish actress Karen Gillan is probably best known for her role as Nebula in the Marvel Cinematic Universe or her role in Doctor Who. Despite often wearing heavy makeup and even prosthetics on her face, the 34-year-old has some seriously great skin. 

Gillan filmed a redhead makeup & skincare routine with Vogue, and we watched it thoroughly to get some new tips and tricks. Here are our biggest takeaways from this redhead star: 

NEW YORK, NY – APRIL 11: Actors Karen Gillan (L) and Matt Smith filming on location for “Doctor Who” in Central Park. (Photo by Michael Stewart/WireImage)

1. Use a tinted serum for a healthy glow

Like most redheads, Gillan has fair skin, but she uses Rejuvi h Skin Healing Gel and the Rejuvi q Flavonoid Compex. The Rejuvi q Flavonoid Compex is a red/brown serum to help with skin redness and provides a healthy glow while nourishing the skin. 

2. Moisturize + protect

Gillan uses some pretty standard moisturizing products for her dry skin including the cult classic La Mer Creme da la Mer and Aquaphor for the lips. She also knows the importance of sun protection (which we love) and says she uses a zinc sunscreen with squalane. 

3. Be careful not to turn your skin green

While applying these products, Gillan mentions you don’t want to let the Rejuvi q Flavonoid Compex. and zinc sunscreen mix because it can turn your skin green! So, she lets the product fully soak in and applies a moisturizer barrier between the two. Her routine consists of using the Rejuvi q Flavonoid Compex, let it soak in for 2-5 minutes, apply a moisturizer, let it soak in for another 2-5 minutes and lock it all in with a moisturizer. 

4. Diet plays a big role

Most of Gillan’s amazing skin can really be accredited to her diet. She has recently started working with a nutritionist and found out she has a lot of food allergies that may have been causing bad skin. Food allergies and sensitivities are common and since redheads have such sensitive skin, they can really make a big impact. 

5. Stars…they’re just like us!

As most redheads do, Gillan struggles to find foundations in a light enough shade. She uses Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Foundation which is a staple for redheads. Gillan also uses the Charlotte Tilbury Desert Haze Eyeshadow Palette which she swears by for gingers. 

6. Foundation as concealer?

A little beauty hack this redhead has discovered is to use foundation as a concealer. It offers more coverage and might be a good idea for redheads having a hard time finding a good color. Gillan uses the Laura Mercier Silk Creme Moisturizing Foundation as her concealer together with a small brush.

7. Finishing the face

To finish off the look, Gillan opts for a compact powder to seal it all in. She says her favorite is the MAC Cosmetics Mineralize Skinfinish. She tops the look with some Benefit Dandelion Baby-Pink Brightening Blush that she actually applies lower on the face. This is a tip she learned from a makeup artist and she believes it makes people look more youthful.

8. Redhead brows

Gillan seems to have quite dark brows prior to makeup application, so maybe she gets them tinted, or maybe she needs us to send her some Finally Have Brows. To fill them in she opts for a brow pomade and tinted brow gel. 

9. Why she shaved off her red hair

For her role as Nebula, she actually had to shave her head. She had always been known as “the girl with red hair” so it was a big deal for her. The hair/makeup crew actually knew how much she identified as a redhead, so they kept her hair and had it made into a wig. Gillan later used as hair extensions when her hair grew back. 

10. Liner and lashes

Gillan loves a ‘Redhead-Friendly’ brown eyeliner and her favorite is the Dr. Hauschka Eye Definer which she uses to create a little definition around the eye. She finishes her lash look with Marc Jacobs mascara. 

11. Final touches 

To finish off the entire look, Gillan opts for the Benefit Cosmetics High Beam Liquid Highlighter which is a nice, light, redhead-friendly highlighter she has been using for years. She also applies a Burt’s Bees Tinted Lip Balm for color. 



READ: 8 Inspiring Quotes from Redhead Celebrities

READ: How Redheads Can Avoid Cakey Makeup and Blotchy Foundation Application

Credit: Vogue