Recreate the Best Beauty Looks from the VMAs

The MTV Music Video Awards are known for wild performances, unexpected moments and edgy beauty looks, and this year's VMAs did not disappoint. From Beyonce's show-stealing Lemonade stage recreation, to Rihanna's powerhouse performances and Britney's big comeback, this year's show may have been (mostly) free from controversy, but it was big on female empowerment.

The theme took to the red carpet as well, with Hollywood's top stars rocking a range of beauty looks from sultry to edgy, and downright commanding. We've rounded up some of our favorite looks of the night, plus the how-tos you need to get your clients glammed and gorgeous.

  • Britney Spears

    The Look: Killer, comeback waves
    Stylist: Lorenzo Martin

    How To:

    1. "I began styling by using the ColorProof Evolved Color Care LiftIt Color Protect Foam Mousse on wet hair from roots to ends," says Martin.
    2. "I followed by blow-drying her hair with the Bio Ionic Ultralight Speed Dryer until the hair was smooth.
    3. "I wrapped hair around with the Bio Ionic Long Barrel Curling Iron and left the ends out, adding a little shake at the end to loosen the curl. This tool is specifically designed for long hair, so it worked great with Britney’s look tonight.
    4. "For final touches, I used the ColorProof Evolved Color Care PowderFix Texturizing Powder for added volume and a little ColorProof Evolved Color Care HumidityRx Anti-Frizz WeatherProof Spray to keep her hair picture-perfect in the NYC humidity."
  • Kim Kardashian West

    The Look: Just-off-the-beach, summery, sexy strands
    Stylist: Michael Silva

    How To:

    1. "Kim and I decided to keep her hair fresh and sexy, perfecting and enhancing her natural texture -- a continuation of summery, beach beauty. There is something effortlessly beautiful in playing up natural texture, but of course always making it polished and beautiful," says Silva. "First, I started by applying new Kenra Platinum Snail CC Creme to damp hair from mid-lengths to ends to prep and prime before layering Kenra Platinum Revive Oil on top to lock-in moisture.
    2. "Next, I sprayed Kenra Platinum Texturizing Mist throughout the hair, working it through with my hands, to bring out Kim’s natural wave.
    3. "I then used my ghd Air Hairdryer with a diffuser attachment and dried hair thoroughly, making sure not to touch it too much.
    4. "After the hair was completely dry, I took my ghd Platinum Styler section by section, starting from the back, and perfected her wavy texture and also smoothed some areas where needed.
    5. "I finished the style by spraying a touch of Kenra Platinum Silkening Mist and touching the ends with a few more drops of Kenra Platinum Revive Oil.
    6. "Finally, I sprayed Kenra Platinum Finishing Spray all over to lock the style and shine in place and protect against humidity."
  • Rihanna

    Look One: High and mighty ponytail; Look Two: Superstar shine
    Stylist: Yusef

    How To: Look One (above)

    1. “I wanted to show who Rihanna is and has been throughout her career. Her individuality is what made her into the icon she is today, so we wanted to highlight that with the hair," says Yusef. "She is authentic and each look [of 4 total] is some variation of a signature look that she’s had during her career. To achieve the first look, I first blew the hair dry with the ghd Air Hairdryer.
    2. "I then straightened the hair with the ghd Platinum Styler and used MOP Mixed Greens Leave-In Conditioner to add smoothness so when I pulled it into that high ponytail it would be sleek and sexy.
    3. "Once it was up, I sprayed the hair with MOP C-System Firm Finish Hair Spray and went over it the ghd Curve Classic Wave Wand to add a bit of wave and extra volume to it, and also to seal the hair and reduce fly-aways.
    4. "To finish, we sprayed MOP C-System Firm Finish Hair Spray again to give the hair extra hold and luster.”

    How To: Look Two

    1. “For the last look, I re-wet her hair and blew it dry again using the ghd Air Hairdryer, brushing it back from her face with the ghd Natural Bristle Radial Brush," says Yusef.
    2. "Once it was dry, I applied MOP Mixed Greens Leave-In Conditioner to smooth the edges and add softness. Then I used the ghd Platinum Styler to lock in shine and make it even straighter and smoother. After that, I tamed fly-aways and tucked the hair behind the ears with MOP Orange Peel Molding Cream.
    3. "To finish the look and hold it in place, I used bobby pins before adding MOP C-System Firm Finish Hair Spray to make the finished look a bit more glossy.”
  • Ariana Grande

    The Look: Super-sleek signature pony
    Stylist: Aaron Light

    How To:

    1. Start by applying a small amount of Matrix Style Link Blow Out Big Queen Cream (available Sept. 1st) to damp hair. Blow-dry bangs with 1-inch round brush and then place them in a 1-inch roller. Blow-dry the rest of the hair so it is silky and smooth.
    2. Brush hair into a high ponytail on the top of the head and secure with a hook bungee. This will create a tight ponytail with no slippage. For thick hair, use two bungees.
    3. Spread a dime-size amount of Matrix Style Link Shape Switcher onto fingertips and brush hands backward from the hairline to the ponytail to smooth any bumps and secure fly-aways. Repeat with a barbering brush for extra smoothness.
    4. Wrap a small piece of hair around the bungee and secure with a bobby pin. Spray ponytail with Matrix Style Link Mineral Rough Me Up Salt Infused Spray for texture. Remove roller from bangs and smooth as desired.
    5. To finish the look, take a few random pieces from the ponytail and, using a crimping iron, crimp the hair from top to bottom. TIP: Dust finger tips with Matrix Style Link Mineral Booster Texture Booster and lightly run through sections before crimping for extra texture and volume.
  • Hailey Baldwin

    The Look: A sexy, tousled bob
    Stylist: JenniferYepez

    How To:

    1. Prep hair with Honest Beauty's Honestly Protected Heat Defense Spray followed by the Honestly Uplifted Volumizing Spray from root to end.
    2. Start at the nape of the hair and blow-dry upwards to create volume using a medium size round brush. Divide bottom layer into clean sections and tease at the root, fastening the teased hair with bobby pins at the top and leaving out the ends to create your desired length. Make sure that the top layer covers the hair that’s pinned up.
    3. Using a 1.5-inch curling iron, take medium-sized sections and start to bend hair 1 inch away from the roots, alternating directions.
    4. To complete the look, mist and massage the Honestly Effortless Sea Salt Spray into roots and finish by lightly spraying all over until you get the perfect texture.

     

  • Rita Ora

    The Look: A Brit punk updo
    Stylist: Brent Lawler

    How To:

    1. "I wanted [Rita's] hair to look really cool and modern," says Lawler. "Her outfit was inspired by British punk, so I gave the hair an edge with a mohawk, but still [kept] it chic and sophisticated. I applied ghd Advanced Split End Therapy and ghd Heat Protect Spray to her damp hair. Then, using the ghd Air Hairdryer I blew it out straight.
    2. "Once it was dry, I sectioned her hair into three ponytails — one at the top of her head, one in the back of her head, and one at the nape of her neck. I added ghd Smooth and Finish Serum to make sure the top and sides were very sleek and glossy.
    3. "I wanted to create contrast for a more fun look so I used the ghd Platinum Styler to give the ponytails lots of edgy texture. Using bobby pins, I secured sections of the ponytails onto her head to create a mohawk effect."
  • Aly Raisman

    The Look: A gold (medal) glow
    Makeup Artist: Julie Harris

    How To:

    1. "Aly's look was inspired by her beautiful white and nude floral dress," says Harris, "so we both decided to keep her skin glowing and dewy, creating a dazzling eye using copper and bronzed tones to tie in with the color scheme. First, I prepped her skin with the Physicians Formula #InstaReady Beauty Balm BB Cream SPF 30 in Light/Medium for a fresh and luminous glow.
    2. "Next, I shaded and highlighted along her hairline and cheekbones with the Physicians Formula Super BB #InstaReady Contour Trio BB Stick SPF 30 in Bronze to sculpt and highlight her face. I also blended the Physicians Formula Super BB #InstaReady Contour Trio BB Stick SPF 30 in Blush on the apple of her cheeks for a pop of color.
    3. "On eyes, I used the Physicians Formula Shimmer Strips Custom Eye Enhancing Extreme Shimmer Shadow & Liner in Glam Nude. To start, I blended the copper and bronze shades and applied them on her eyelid to bring out her dark brown eyes. Next, I used the dark brown shade in the crease of her lid as well as the top and lower lash line for definition and liner. To define Aly's statement brows, I feathered and filled them with the Physicians Formula Eye Booster 4-in-1 Brow Boosting Kit, always brushing them out when finished for a polished look. Aly has beautifully thick lashes, so using Physicians Formula Eye Booster Instant Doll Lash Extension Kit helped create the perfect look with its super-lengthening effect.
    4. "Lastly, I dusted the Physicians Formula Butter Bronzer Murumuru Butter Bronzer along the hairline, cheekbones, and down her neck to give her skin a warm, sunset glow. A light pink-nude lip gloss complemented her fresh glowing skin and bronzed eye."
  • Madison Kocian

    The Look: Fresh-faced and youthful
    Makeup Artist: Julie Harris

    How To:

    1. "Madison's look focuses on a youthful glow, emphasizing her beautiful green eyes and perfect skin," says Harris. "I started with a thin layer of the Physicians Formula #InstaReady Beauty Balm BB Cream SPF 30 in Light on Madison's fair skin, allowing for her youthful freckles to still be seen. Using Physicians Formula Super BB #InstaReady Contour Trio BB Stick SPF 30 in Blush on her cheekbones and to highlight added a camera-ready glow, topped with Physicians Formula Butter Bronzer Murumuru Butter Bronzer on her hairline, cheekbones, and down the neck.
    2. "For her eyes, it was important to spotlight Madison's stunning green eyes and complement her teal dress, so I chose the Physicians Formula Shimmer Strips Custom Eye Enhancing Extreme Shimmer Shadow & Liner in Disco Glam. This palette has a beautiful violet shade and gold shade that I used to play up her eyes… made even more dramatic when I used a damp brush to give more depth to the colors. I applied them on the lid and then blended softer into the crease to create definition. Using a thin brush, I swept one of the dark shades in the palette along the lower lash line for a soft, smoky eye. Next, I used the Physicians Formula Eye Booster 2-in1 Lash Boosting Cushion Eyeliner + Serum, drawing a thin line close to the lashes to define her eye. Her lashes were complete with the Physicians Formula Eye Booster Instant Doll Lash Extension Kit, lengthening them on the top and bottom.
    3. "Lastly, I applied a pink-mauve lip color for a soft, subtle look without taking away from the eye."
  • Simone Biles

    The Look: Young and fresh
    Makeup Artist: Rebecca Restrepo

    How To:

    1. "I wanted to bring out Simone's youthful glow by keeping her look fresh with a shimmering copper eyeshadow and soft nude lip," says Restrepo. "I used Elizabeth Arden Flawless Finish Correcting and Highlighting Concealer in #6 to conceal imperfections and Beautiful Color Bold Illuminating Liquid Highlighter to highlight down the center of her nose, around her temples, cheekbones, collarbone and shoulders. I also used Eight Hour Oil on her body for a sultry sheen.
    2. "To accentuate her gorgeous eye shape, I used Beautiful Color Eyeshadow in Spice all over her lid, and added Beautiful Color Eyeshadow in Blonde to the inner corners of her eyes.
    3. "I created a cat eye effect by applying Beautiful Color Bold Defining 24HR Liquid Liner in Dark Valentine along her lash line and Beautiful Color Precision Glide Eyeliner in Black Velvet on the inside of her waterline for extra definition. I finished by coating Grand Entrance Mascara in Stunning Black on her top and bottom lashes.
    4. "To finish Simone's look, I lined her lips with Beautiful Color Precision Glide Lipliner in Hazelnut and applied Beautiful Color Liquid Lipstick in Daring Beige for a velvety finish."
  • Laurie Hernandez

    The Look: An unexpected pop of color
    Makeup Artist: Rebecca Restrepo

    How To:

    1. "To play off Laurie's blue embroidered dress, I kept her makeup fresh and modern with an unexpected pop of color with Electric Blue eyeliner," says Restrepo. "I used Elizabeth Arden Flawless Finish Correcting and Highlighting Concealer in #4 and Beautiful Color Bold Illuminating Liquid Highlighter on the center of her nose, around the temples and cheekbones, collarbone and shoulders to intensify her natural contours.
    2. "Next, I applied Ceramide Cream Blush in Nectar to the apples of her cheeks for a soft flush of color.
    3. "For Laurie's eye look, I used Beautiful Color Eyeshadow in Shimmering Copper from the lash line to the crease and Beautiful Color Eyeshadow in Seashell along the inside of her eye for a brighter look. To make her brown eyes pop, I created a slight cat eye by drawing a thin line close to the upper eyelid from the inner corner of the eye toward the outer corner using Beautiful Color Bold Defining 24HR Liquid Liner in Electric Blue.
    4. "I finished by coating her top and bottom lashes with Grand Entrance Mascara in Stunning Black.
    5. "To define her brows, I used Beautiful Color Natural Eye Brow Pencil in Natural Black.
    6. "To complement her bold eye, I kept Laurie's lips soft and natural. I lined them with Beautiful Color Precision Glide Lipliner in Ballet Blush and finished with Beautiful Color Bold."
  • Parris Goebel

    The Look: Simple but slay-worthy pony
    Stylist: Ursula Stephen

    How To:

    1. "Options are key! [VMA-nominated choreographer] Parris was set on doing a long braid but, I decided to bring a few options and she changed her mind when she saw the selection of ideas,” says Stephen. To get the look, start by cleansing and conditioning hair with Bed Head by TIGI Fully Loaded Massive Volume Shampoo & Conditioning Jelly to prep the hair for a voluminous look.
    2. Spray a generous amount of Bed Head by TIGI Superstar Blowdry Lotion from root to ends of damp hair and blow-dry.
    3. When hair is completely dry, apply a nickel-size amount of Bed Head by TIGI Manipulator Matte Wax from root to ends of hair to add texture and grip.
    4. Brush hair back into a tight ponytail and secure with an elastic. Wrap a piece of hair around the ponytail and secure with bobby pins.
    5. Spray the ponytail with Bed Head by TIGI Dirty Secret Dry Shampoo to create grit and added texture. Using a paddle brush, brush out the ponytail to get the massive volume effect.
    6. Set the look with Bed Head by TIGI Full of It Volume Finishing Hairspray to keep the look in place and to prevent the ponytail from falling flat.
Credits: 

Photos: Getty Images

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