Model Anok Yai’s Makeup Secrets Include Black Lipstick and a “Blinding Highlight”

The model reveals her beauty secrets, including how to get that glow.

amfAR Gala Milano 2018 - Red Carpet
Kevin Tachman

Anok Yai may still only be 20 years old (she’ll turn 21 next month), but she’s already plenty accomplished. Earlier this year, she became the first black model to open a Prada show, following in the footsteps of none other than Naomi Campbell, who was the last to do so back in 1997. Soon after, she was named global spokesmodel for Estée Lauder, joining the likes of Karlie Kloss, Grace Elizabeth, Kendall Jenner, and Joan Smalls. Here, the Egyptian-born model breaks down everything from her nighttime beauty routine to the one facial she’ll never try.

What are your favorite go-to beauty products?

Estee Lauder’s Double Wear Stay-In-Place Foundation.

When you wake up in the morning, what is the first thing you do?

The first thing I do in the morning is exfoliate. I exfoliate my face almost every day with exfoliating gloves, and it makes a huge difference. I get my gloves from The Dollar Tree; they are the best and super affordable.

What is your nightly bedtime beauty routine?

Before bed I wipe all my makeup off with Estée Lauder makeup remover, then wash my face with whatever bar soap is in my bathroom. After that I’ll do a face mask. I have about seven to 10 different face masks, so I randomly switch between them depending on how my skin is feeling that day. Once I’m done with the mask I use Estée Lauder Advance Night Repair Eye Concentrate{: rel=nofollow}, which really hydrates my skin. And finally I rub castor oil into my eyebrows and Vaseline on my eyelashes.

What is the best beauty trick you have picked up on set?

A good beauty trick I have is to tight line your eyes. It gives your lashes a thicker, fuller appearance.

What is your favorite shade of lipstick?

I’m a lip-gloss kind of girl but when I do wear lipstick it’s either black or Estee Lauder’s Pure Color Envy Smash Up, which looks great on dark skin.

What is one beauty item you recommend everyone buy?

Advanced Night Repair!

What is your go-to beauty look for a night out?

When I go out I always do the most! Sometimes I change my eye shadow or eyeliner up depending on my outfit but I always do matte skin with a dewy contour, long lashes, a brow and blinding highlight.

What is your ideal spa day, and where?

I’ve actually never been to a spa before, so I am open to suggestions!

What is the biggest skincare rule you abide by?

I don’t want to be the person that says “water solves all of your problems.” but water actually solves all of your problems. That and exfoliating.

What is one treatment you’re afraid to try?

I am usually open to trying new things but I don’t think I’ll ever do one of those blood facials.

What is your biggest beauty splurge?

I wasted a few hundred dollars on a spin brush that I forgot in a hotel in Paris.

Favorite form of self-care?

Reading and drawing. As much as I keep my body in check with exercise and eating healthy, it’s important for me to keep my mind stimulated and refreshed as well.

Worst beauty trend that you’ve participated in?

I’ve participated in a lot of bad beauty trends but those were the dark days that I’ve erased from my memory.