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Makeup Artist Sarah Tanno Talks Lady Gaga’s Latest Looks

Makeup artist Sarah Tanno talks Lady Gaga's high octane looks for her new album cycle.

Few artists bridge the gap between aesthetics and music like Lady Gaga. Whether it be a raw meat dress worn on a red carpet or a signature pink cowboy hat, Gaga’s looks famously mirror her album cycles. Now, with the release of “Chromatica,” her hotly anticipated album delayed following the coronavirus pandemic, the next phase in her cosmetic evolution packs a multicolored punch.

“The makeup and music go hand-in-hand because we’ve been working together for so long,” said Sarah Tanno, global artistry director of Haus Laboratories. “She understands makeup in a way like nobody else I’ve always worked with. The looks are all very pop; some are pared down, some are all the way cranked up.”

Gaga’s definition of “pared down,” though, still features saturated hues, just with focuses on one or a few at a time. “It’s fashion makeup in a new way. Some of it is very monochromatic, like in the ‘Stupid Love’ video, then we’re moving into more color-blocking styles,” Tanno said. 

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Color is a new thing for Gaga, although experimentation is not. For example, in her music video for “Born This Way,” she dons facial prosthetics, but without the strong color around her eyes and lips shown in her more recent music videos for “Rain on Me” and “Stupid Love,” the two singles off of the album. “Gaga gravitated toward teal, but we’ve never done color in a big way,” Tanno said.

That hue makes an appearance in Haus Laboratories’ new Stupid Love palette, giving consumers the opportunity to play with the textures and colors Tanno used on Gaga. “Makeup has always been a big part of her music, now we get to do it with her own products. There’s a matte and shimmer version of almost every color in that palette, and I love playing with warm tones and cool tones in the same look,” she said.

When describing her own looks, though, Gaga goes by feeling rather than shape or tone. “I was thinking about her past looks. A question I always ask her is, ‘How do you want to feel?’” Tanno said. “‘Empowered’ came to mind.”

For more from, see:

WWD Report Card: There Is Only One Lady Gaga

Lady Gaga to Star in Ridley Scott’s Upcoming Gucci Movie

First Look at Lady Gaga’s New Makeup Products