She’s tiny, she’s blonde, she’s 21 – and she has over 3 million subscribers on her YouTube channel, a viewership any magazine or blog could only dream to reach. Meet Lauren Curtis, the unassuming Western Australian who dominates the enigmatic empire of homegrown Beauty Guru-dom. With humble beginnings in her teenage bedroom just three short years ago, Lauren’s channel has since acquired international recognition due to her infectious personality and never ending stockpile of tips and tricks.
We caught up with the business savvy beauty in her sleek Bondi apartment where she shared the secrets to her trademark tresses and lash-tastic look.
"My approach to beauty is very simple - enhance your features; don't mask them.
It's easy to get carried away with makeup because it has a creative element to it, but we need to realise that we should wear makeup to enhance what we already have, not to try to create something we don't. I love that you can be so creative with makeup but it's so easy to be reliant on it. Saying that, my favourite beauty possession would be my mascara! I have long lashes but they're blonde and look non-existent when there's nothing on them. As soon as I apply mascara they're bold and dramatic and make me look recognisable again! My look isn't exactly unique, but I love tanned skin, blonde hair and blue eyes. I guess it's kind of a beachy look. I wish I got my dad's tanned skin genes - I can't get a natural tan even if I tried!
My routine stays basically the same from day-to-day.
I only wear a primer if I want to even out the surface of my skin, otherwise I move straight to foundation. I apply it first because my under eye concealer is a few shades lighter and, if applied first, the lightness is masked by the foundation. I then set my face with a translucent powder as this ensures my makeup will stay in place all day. I contour my cheeks using a matte and apply blush to the apples of my cheeks, which gives me a healthy, flushed look, like I just went for a jog. After blush comes highlighter to further enhance my cheekbones. I then fill in my brows, apply my eyeshadow (I prefer copper tones to make my eyes appear more blue) and apply mascara. I like long, spidery lashes because it makes your eyes appear much bigger! Lipstick is last in a nude salmon pink, it looks great against tanned skin.
I'm a creature of habit when it comes to my hair.
As it's so long I usually keep it straight because it's the quickest option. A quick touch up with my GHD and my hair is done! For a night out I love to use M.A.C Paint Pot as an eyeshadow base. It guarantees my eyeshadow won't budge. I also like to do a heavy under eye highlight with M.A.C Mineralize Skinfinish Natural in Light to give my face a 'glow'. Although I am lucky to have long lashes naturally, I find that a pair of false lashes can never go astray. I prefer to wear a pair that appears spidery and 'spiky' almost, as this makes my eyes appear much larger.
I'm constantly trying out new hair care
so it's hard for me to keep track of what works best. At the moment I'm using a shampoo, conditioner, mask and protective spray by Goldwell for dry and stressed hair, it’s the first full range of hair care products I've used that I've really loved. I've used the Tresemme Heat Tamer Protective Spray for years because it's affordable and lasts forever. Once I’m out of the shower I will immediately blow-dry my hair so it doesn't dry in an awkward shape and then straighten if necessary. I go to Brad Ngata Hair Direction for my hair - Theresa colours it and Brad cuts it.
Some makeup tricks I’ve picked up include…
applying my eyebrow powder before I set my foundation because the powder sticks so well to damp skin, allowing for cleaner and crisper lines. I also apply my mascara upwards and then towards my nose, this pulls the lashes in straight making them appear longer. I avoid contouring my cheeks if I have a breakout on them because it tends to look muddy. My first essential brush is my M.A.C 266 brush, it’s made from natural hair and is very narrow so allows me to define my eyebrows with detail. Next is my favourite eye brush, the Tapered Blending brush by Sigma, it blends eyeshadow into the crease effortlessly! Another essential is my NARS Kabuki Artisan 21 brush. It is the ultimate contouring brush because of its narrow rectangular shape. I also carry around a mini kabuki brush by EcoTools and dip it into my pressed powder before I leave the house. This way, if I need to touch up, I can pop my retractable kabuki out and powder my T-zone. It has a lid, which keeps it sanitary.
I've been a vegetarian for over 7 years now so I've learnt to love fresh, healthy food…
I'm very aware of the nutritional content of what I eat and always try to pick the healthier option. With that being said I am not against treating myself, so if I feel like a treat there's no stopping me! Moving out of home has been challenging for me, as I’ve had to learn to cook my own meals and I'm not exactly the greatest chef! One of my favourite foods at the moment is vegetarian sushi - it fills me up and doesn't make me feel guilty afterwards. I love snacking on frozen grapes and canned super sweet corn - separately of course!
I got into horror movies when I was about 15 or so... and I have no idea why!
All of my family hates them but yet I can't get enough! I watch them all the time - whenever I have a spare moment, really. I've even watched them when I’m getting ready to go clubbing - weird right?! I don't have an ultimate favourite because I love so many but my current favourite is the new Evil Dead remake.
I am entirely self-taught and I actually didn't always love makeup…
I had absolutely no interest in beauty growing up. It wasn't until midway through high school when I started realising that all of my friends at the all-girls school I went to wore makeup except me. I studied photography my first year out of high school because I had always had an affinity for cameras and filming. At that point I was just starting to really get interested in makeup so I thought why not combine my two hobbies - filming and makeup! I started my channel then and here we are today. There are so many amazing opportunities that come with my work. I am SO lucky to be doing what I'm doing. Every day I wake up not knowing what the day will bring - it's a roller coaster!
The most surprising things people have said to me on my channel…
would be how much of a role model I am to them. The amount of heartfelt messages I receive daily is astounding and it makes me feel so special. I have people writing to me telling me that I have inspired them to quit the job that they hate or that after they watch my more personal videos about my experience with bullying they feel that there is hope for them too. It’s inevitable that I receive negative feedback as well. As soon as you put yourself out there on a public platform there are always going to be people that cannot stand you for whatever reason. I try my best to ignore them - I delete their comments and then block them so that they can't leave any more nasty remarks. If I feel someone really deserves to be confronted then I will do so - I am very assertive and have never been one to let people walk over me so if someone is way out of line they will hear about it! Anonymity is a double edge sword. It gives people who are too shy to speak up in everyday life a chance to voice their opinions, but it also gives the cowards who feel safe dishing out insults because they're behind a computer the chance to do exactly that. I embrace people being vocal but I guess I also resent it.
The beauty world is changing with digital advancements.
Young girls aren’t buying magazines for beauty instruction anymore. YouTube is amazing because it has everything you could possibly need or want to know right at your fingertips. Videos are also so much more enjoyable to watch because they're simply more entertaining and engaging. Rather than reading an article by someone you know nothing about, you are being fed information by someone who you feel like you have a personal connection with - almost like a friend.”