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“Babes” Makeup Artist Shares Behind-the-Scenes Details


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Fans of “Broad City” will be happy to know that Ilana Glazer’s upcoming project, “Babes,” has plenty of parallels to the popular Comedy Central series. The new film, which premiered at SXSW Film Festival on March 9 and hits theaters on May 17, is anchored in women’s friendships and features plenty of hilariously absurd circumstances.

Glazer’s character, Eden, becomes pregnant after a one-night stand and leans on her best friend, Dawn, who is a mother of two, for guidance along her journey to motherhood. Because the film follows Eden through her entire pregnancy and beyond, Glazer wore a prosthetic pregnant belly in all stages of gestation. She also frequently had her belly exposed — like in a scene where she re-created Beyoncé’s iconic 2017 pregnancy announcement photo shoot — so makeup department head Kristy Strate had to ensure that the prosthetic looked as seamless and realistic as possible.

“It was something that we needed to be able to take on and off frequently and quickly,” Strate tells PS of the prosthetic’s technical challenges. “It couldn’t be something that’s glued on and blended away.”

Strate also got crafty when designing Eden’s face makeup, utilizing a cocktail of dewy products to give her a pregnancy glow and switching up undertones to subtly convey a change of seasons. From body bronzer to fake pregnant bellies, here are all the behind-the-scenes makeup details to know about “Babes.”

Making a Fake Pregnant Belly Look Realistic

Strate explains that, typically, a prosthetic pregnant belly would be created by taking a cast of the actor’s body. However, since the film takes place over the course of an entire pregnancy and was shot out of narrative order, Strate had to make something that was easy for Glazer to take on and off.

“I found a premade generic belly that I was able to pull on and off of her, and it fit her really nicely,” she says. “So we had a big silicone belly that she would basically step into, then we’d roll it up her body and place it in the right place.”

It wasn’t all that simple, though. Strate had to paint the silicone belly so that it perfectly matched Glazer’s skin tone. “I’d never painted with the silicone before,” she says. “So I had to teach myself the process of silicone painting, which is where you mix all these paint colors and put it through the airbrush and add different layers. I had to match it to Ilana’s skin tone, match her actual freckles, [and] do the little pregnancy line down by the belly button. It was a learning process.”

Re-Creating Beyoncé’s Iconic Pregnancy Reveal

Much like Glazer herself, Eden is a massive Beyoncé fan, so it seems only natural that the character would want to emulate the singer’s iconic pregnancy reveal. The 2017 announcement featured Beyoncé holding her pregnant belly in front of a massive floral arrangement while wearing a long sheer veil.

“Her character is sort of what you would expect from Ilana’s humor,” Strate says. “She’s very out there, and she wants to have every moment for her during this pregnancy. So, of course, she wanted to throw an ode to Beyoncé.”

The makeup artist explains that she worked with the hair and wardrobe departments to re-create the essential elements of the original portrait, including a veil, a pretty bra, and an exposed pregnant belly.

“As far as her face makeup, I did pump it up a little bit,” Strate says. “We did a different lip and we pumped up the eyes a little bit. But really, the focus was mostly just the glow in the skin.”

To achieve the ultimate all-over glow, Strate mixed Anastasia Beverly Hills Cream Bronzers ($35) with body lotion and buffed it onto Glazer’s body with a big fluffy brush.

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Subtle Makeup Changes Can Make a Big Impact

While Eden has a couple of bold makeup moments in “Babes,” the majority of her looks were kept simple and glowy. “Everything we used was very hydrating and cream-based because I wanted to really give that pregnancy glow,” Strate says.

The makeup artist started with a cold jade roller to wake up Glazer’s skin and stimulate circulation around the eyes. Her go-to moisturizing products were Dr. Hauschka Rose Day Cream ($45) and La Prairie Skin Caviar Luxe Eye Cream ($435). For the base makeup, Strate used a mix of Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Aqua Foundation ($96) and Kjaer Weis Invisible Touch Foundation ($48), as well as It Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Concealer ($30).

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As for color products, Strate switched them up based on the time of year to subtly drive the narrative. For scenes that took place during spring and summer, she used Nudestix Nudies Cream Blush All-Over Face Color in Moodie Blu ($35) as a lip color. “It’s sort of like a wildflower color — this beautiful purple,” she says. “Ilana saw it and was like, ‘Oh my god, so intense,’ but then you put it on and it just looks like this beautiful color coming from within the lip.”

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For scenes in fall and winter, Strate used the same product in an auburn shade, Crimson Lover, on the lips and cheeks. “Some people might not ever notice those things but it’s the little things that subconsciously drive the storyline and the timeline,” she says.

Catherine Santino is a contributing writer at POPSUGAR, where she covers beauty, celebrity, and culture. She started writing in 2014 and has bylines in People, Insider, The Zoe Report, and BuzzFeed.


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