Chloe and Halle are young, vibrant and ridiculously talented singer-songwriters, with an unrivaled fandom — after their cover of Beyoncé’s “Pretty Hurts,” the superstar herself became a huge fan and included the sisters in her visual album Lemonade as well as Ivy Park Spring/Summer 2017 campaign. The duo’s red carpet style has also garnered fans, often turning heads with their bright, bold outfits paired with equally fun makeup.
They are the ideal clients for makeup artist Christiana Cassell, who is responsible for several of the girls’ standout red carpet moments, including the 48th NAACP Image Awards and the Nickelodeon Kid’s Choice Awards. Cassell, who knows how to create both subtle and bright looks for Chloe and Halle, began studying cosmetology in high school and later met the girls through her close friend and stylist to the singing duo Zerina Akers.
Cassell chats with Billboard about collaborating with the sisters, her favorite and least favorite beauty trends, and the best piece of advice she’s gotten while pursuing makeup artistry.
What’s it like working with Chloe and Halle?
It is truly a blessing to work with them. They are super-sweet and pleasant to be around. It is also so nice to be around young, confident and talented girls who have found their identities and passions in life.
Do you collaborate with them on a vision or do you get a bit more creative freedom?
When doing makeup, there is some information that is crucial to know beforehand. You need to know what type of occasion it is, so that you can conceptualize the look appropriately. You’ve got to know what type of look your clients want to embody and who they want to be that day. Most importantly, [you need to know] what they’re wearing. Once I have all of that information, I can determine their most suitable look. I try to create looks that I know fit both of their personalities. It’s also very important to incorporate their own vision because it allows them to express themselves and feel confident doing it.
Do you collaborate with their stylists and other members of the glam squad?
I partner a lot with their stylist, Zerina, to determine which makeup look they’re for based of what the girls will be wearing. For me, it’s almost more fun that way. It’s like fitting the missing piece to a puzzle, then voila!
What’s your favorite look you’ve created for girls?
They are not afraid of taking risks and trying new things, like different colors and tones in lipsticks and eye shadows. My favorite look I created for them was for the NAACP Image Awards this year. I used tones of plum and gold in their makeup. I also kept the skin very light, radiant and fresh. Their makeup went perfectly with the Emanuel Ungaro outfits they wore that evening!
What is your favorite beauty trend right now?
Summer is almost here and I’m a huge fan of radiant, bronzy and glowing skin. As of late, skin care has also become more and more popular even amongst young adults. It really goes hand and hand in creating the perfect makeup look. I love using a Korean sheet mask to keep skin really soft and supple! Makeup should be used to accentuate one’s beauty, not cover it.
What about your least favorite?
When creating natural/everyday looks would be overly contoured and color-corrected makeup. I think your makeup routine should be personalized to fit your lifestyle and personality. It doesn’t necessarily take 100 steps to create a masterpiece. Also ‘less is more’ sometimes. As an artist, it is important to focusing on features you want to bring forward and enhance.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve been given when pursuing your dreams to become a makeup artist?
I think my mother has always given me great advice throughout my life [and] most importantly, the will to pursue my dreams despite the obstacles. She once told me, “Nothing comes to a sleeper, but a dream.” You have to go after what you want in life and never give up.
Who’s your biggest beauty inspiration? (Celebrity, makeup artist, etc.)
Pat McGrath is definitely one of my biggest makeup inspirations. She has done such amazing things in the fashion industry and with some of the greatest photographers in the world. I’m also really love her Pat McGrath Labs cosmetics line!