We’ve all gotten the memo: Expect things in 2020, including holiday plans, to be different than usual. That doesn’t mean these seven makeup artists and hairstylists aren’t getting into the festive spirit. Those who beautify the likes of Kristen Stewart and Alicia Keys tell Sunday Edit what their plans are, from feasting, to travel, to gifting. Ready to get inspired?
Quynh’s Christmas plans — which usually involve international travel to locales like Machu Picchu, Niseko and Saigon — will be domestic and more low key “because of everything going on this year.” But there will be plenty of traditions including baking pumpkin cheesecake for Thanksgiving and festive Christmas cookies, watching A Charlie Brown Christmas and gifting galore.
This Giorgio Armani Beauty Collaborator likes to give pine-scented candles as a Thanksgiving token to the host, and for Christmas, skincare (“Who doesn’t love a skin treatment?”) or CBD bath salts. For her celebrity clientele — Florence Pugh, Chloe Grace Moretz, Kieran Shipka and Elizabeth Chambers are among them — she seeks out “something rare, usually vintage” in the way of clothes, jewelry or home decor.
And what do you get this L.A.-based beautyphile? A gift card to a favorite eatery (Sushi Sushi, FOOD, Si Laa) or something thoughtful, like a handwritten note. “Ginnifer Goodwin would always give me a sweet, thoughtful Christmas present every year — a monogrammed journal or bottles of wine that she and [husband] Josh created.”
Last year for Thanksgiving, this N.Y.C.-based groomer was prepping Billy Porter for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. “This year, I get to sleep in and take it easy.” That will include eating vegan turkey with her vegetarian mother: “It by no means tastes like turkey, but it’s so good.”
Then it’s into the Christmas spirit by decorating her apartment “and drinking eggnog lattes for the entire season.” Even her two Yorkie dogs get stockings “full of toys that are bigger than they are.”
What else is on her shopping list? Beauty gift sets that are “a nice indulgence you sometimes feel guilty about buying yourself” and Lisa Eldridge lipstick for herself. For her celebrity clients (she grooms Henry Golding and Ben Platt), she gifts crystals like pyrite, said to protect against negative energy.
What’s a notable gift one of her A-listers has given her? A Theragun muscle massager. “[The client] had one and loved it so much, he thought I needed one too.”
Food takes the limelight in holiday celebrations for this pro, who counts Kristen Stewart, Nicole Richie and Sienna Miller as devoted clients. For Thanksgiving, stuffing and gravy take center stage. “I am the king of both,” he admits, with his sourdough-wheat-cornbread-sausage-fennel-mushroom-apple recipe and secret gravy addition of tomato paste for “mahogany liquid magic.”
For Christmas, “I make cookies with my nieces, cinnamon buns for my brothers and I am almost always in charge of the main meal.” His passion for food is clear: “I use it to show my love.” That, and Tom Ford lip balm, which his 4-year-old niece smeared all over her face last Christmas “and she was so happy.”
So what does L.A.-based Nelson, who is launching a makeup applicator in March, has on his wish list this year? “Just time with my loved ones. And maybe a COVID cure.”
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Like others, Carreon is keeping his Thanksgiving “small, intimate and safe” this year, and as in years past, he’s the chef. “My specialties are stuffing, [my] mom’s delicious cranberry mold and rack of lamb.”
The co-owner of L.A.’s Ramoscarreon Salon and YouTube educator counts a Thanksgiving at the actress and client Maria Bello’shouse as one of his most memorable, and not just because he got off chef duty. “It was in her yard and there must have been 50 people.”
For Christmas, he heads south to his home “at the ocean surrounded by farms” in Todos Santos, Mexico. He and friends dine at Hierbabuena, “an open-air restaurant in a steel barn-like structure” that focuses on farm-to-table fare. His house there serves as a gift as well: “It allows me to invite people to come and stay with me for some quality time.” What will he NOT be buying this year? “A mask.” Or anything for celebrity clients because he overthinks it and it becomes stressful. “I only did that once and was so nervous. I gave Demi Moore a trinket from Hermes.” But he always appreciates the thoughtfulness of his clients, like the Bottega Veneta overnight shave bag from Kris Jenner. “She gave it to me at her legendary Christmas party. I love and cherish it.”
Though this hairstylist reminisces about “mom and tia’s food” like pernil (pork shoulder), the coquitos cocktails she brings and “eating myself into a coma” at holidays past, this year she’s “hoping we can still get the entire family together, but more than likely we’ll have to settle for FaceTime.”
The pro, who counts Shakira and Alicia Keys as clients, says health is a big focus for her this year, “and I want my family to get on the same page.” She’ll be gifting them The Only Seamoss Gummies, a superfood mineral supplement that she launched earlier this year. What’s the top of her wish list? “Great health. But a jumbo Chanel bag wouldn’t hurt.”
Baraf says, “The uncertainty of how to safely navigate connecting with loved ones” has her focusing on presence — as in, being together with loved ones — more than presents this year. That being said, one of the best gifts New York-based Baraf received from a client (hers include Lea Michele and Katharine McPhee Foster) was “a gorgeous travel jewelry case” because “[the client] knows how much I love my jewelry.”
And what does this beauty pro, known for expressive eye makeup, veer toward when gifting? “Self-care and things that bring joy,” such as “a silk pillowcase like the one I have from Slip and the SKIMS cozy robe that I’m obsessed with.”
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Currently, in Paris, this hairstylist to stars like Claire Foy, Julia Garner and Natasha Lyonne, won’t be heading to her hometown of Denver this year. But she’s still planning a “cozy getaway with friends to a little village in the forest called Le Perche.”
During lockdown times, she’s been creating ceramics and pottery that she plans to gift: “Pots for my plant-loving friends and vases for the more flower-child ones.”
On her wish list? Candles. “So much time at home and I’m going through them at what might be considered an alarming rate.” Merry and bright indeed.
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