My Beauty Uniform: Gabrielle Korn | Cup of Jo

My Beauty Uniform: Gabrielle Korn

L.A.-based Gabrielle Korn (left) is the editorial and publishing lead at Most, Netflix’s LGBTQ+ platform. She’s also the author of the 2021 memoir Everybody (Else) Is Perfect, which chronicles the years she spent as a high-profile magazine editor. Here, she tells us about her wedding look, a great new movie, and the moisturizer she’ll wear for the rest of her life…

My Beauty Uniform: Gabrielle Korn

First of all, congratulations on your marriage! What made you decide to elope?
Neither of us wanted a big wedding. We wanted to elope to New York and have a City Hall wedding — but it’s like The Hunger Games trying to get an appointment there. And then my wife Wallace found this elopement-planning company Eloping is Fun, and the whole thing was planned two weeks out!

My Beauty Uniform: Gabrielle Korn

Wow! How did you decide on your wedding look?
Since the wedding wasn’t going to be fancy, I just wanted a simple white dress. We went to Saks department store, but because it was winter, there was only a handful of white dresses, and only one was my size. So, the decision made itself! The dress had gold buttons, so in the cab on my way home, I ordered gold boots.

My Beauty Uniform: Gabrielle Korn

Did you do your own hair and makeup?
Yes, I did both mine and Wallace’s. I used Bobbi Brown’s gold eyeshadow palette that I’ve literally had for 10 years (it’s probably expired and disgusting!). Then I put a bunch of curls in my hair with my curling iron and tried to make it really big.

What lipstick did you wear?
Sephora Collection’s Cream Lip Stain in Red Velvet. I’ve tried hundreds of lip stains for work, and this the BEST. I always touch up the edges with a Q-Tip.

My Beauty Uniform: Gabrielle Korn

For days that aren’t your wedding day, what does your morning routine look like?
It starts with three cups of coffee and staring into the void.

Haha, and then?
I do a streaming workout class called The SaltDrop, which was created by my favorite barre instructor. Working out at home was the biggest self-care ritual I developed during the pandemic. It’s one of the only things I do just for me, no one else.

My Beauty Uniform: Gabrielle Korn

Are you a lotion person?
I am a begrudgingly forgetful lotion person. I usually use whatever Wallace has recently bought, which, at the moment, is Aesop Body Balm. It smells so good!

Do you use deodorant?
Yeah, THAI Crystal Deodorant. It’s literally a salt rock. My skin can’t handle actual deodorant anymore. I’ve tried every kind, and no matter what, I get this horrible rash that won’t go away. The salt rock works… fine. If someone were to smell my armpits at the end of the day, it wouldn’t be an amazing experience. But no one’s doing that.

My Beauty Uniform: Gabrielle Korn

Let’s talk face stuff.
I wash my face with La Roche-Posay Acne Cleanser, and then I use Augustinus Bader moisturizer.

Oh, Augustinus Bader. So you’ve been converted to the wonder cream. Is it as good as they say?
Honestly, it’s the best product I’ve ever used, and I’ve tried everything. I will use it for the rest of my life. I’ve always had rosacea, acne, dry skin and oily skin and sensitive skin. But now it’s like I don’t have any of those things!

My Beauty Uniform: Gabrielle Korn

Do you put on makeup in the morning?
Yes. I have very light brown brows, so I use Chanel Brow Powder and Benefit Brow Gel to make them look full. Then I put on Milk Makeup’s KUSH Waterproof Mascara. I’m a mascara perfectionist, and I love this one because it makes my lashes very long and thick, and it stays on all day. Then I finish with Nars Multiple stick in Maui, for cheeks, lips, eyes, etc.

My Beauty Uniform: Gabrielle Korn

What about your hair routine?
I let it air dry, and then I use salt spray. And then a lot of dry shampoo for texture and volume.

My Beauty Uniform: Gabrielle Korn

What does your evening routine look like?
I watch like six hours of TV. [laughs]

Are there any shows or movies you’re excited about when it comes to queer representation?
So many! There’s a film from Amsterdam coming to Netflix on February 11th, called Anne+ about a queer woman in her 20s, navigating a breakup and trying to finish her novel. It’s so good and so deeply gay. I am also excited to see queer people in roles that don’t center their queerness. Laverne Cox is a revelation in Inventing Anna about fraudster Anna Delvey. And I just executive produced Netflix’s first ever LGBTQ+ podcast, hosted by Jasmin Savoy Brown and Liv Hewson, from Yellowjackets. It’s called The Homo Schedule and it is a delight!

What or who would you like to see more of on screen?
I’d like to see more queer people in queer roles, and trans people cast across the board. I’d like for the industry to examine how their interpretation of non-binary identities is limited to thin, white, masculine-of-center people. And I want more queer characters to have queer friends! Sometimes it feels like if you get a queer character on screen, the only other queer person will be their one love interest. That’s not really how life works. It’s certainly not how community works.

My Beauty Uniform: Gabrielle Korn

How would you describe your relationship to beauty?
It’s complicated. Working in the industry — writing about beauty and fashion and aesthetics — and then stepping out of it really changed my perspective. It used to be very important to me to always have makeup on, always look the best that I possibly could. And as soon as I left media, and that was no longer required of me, that attitude fell away. I quickly became a ‘who the fuck cares?’ kind of person. It probably wasn’t good for me to be in that industry long-term, because you forget that really, it doesn’t matter. And now, being in a job where it literally doesn’t matter what I look like has been really freeing. I wish I could have let myself get to this place sooner.

It’s hard, especially when you’re young and forging a career.
And when it’s not imaginary! When you’re in the beauty industry, you actually are judged based on how you look. I think it’s only recently that the mold has been breaking. I’m glad to see the industry changing, but I also want to stay far away. I have freed up so much space in my brain.

Are there any tips you picked up that you still use?
Can I tell you the best trick I learned? Most people think that when you apply foundation, it should be an even layer across your face — like your base layer. But really, you should think of your skin as the base layer, and you’re using the foundation to make that base even. So, instead of putting it on your whole face, you concentrate it in the middle and then blend it out, so that by the time you get to your jaw, it’s just your skin showing. That’s how you make foundation look natural.

My Beauty Uniform: Gabrielle Korn

Has your relationship changed your approach to beauty at all?
Gender is obviously such a complicated thing. Most of the women I’ve been with have had more masculine looks, so I’m used to being the one in makeup and dresses. But I do appreciate having a partner who I trust to love me no matter what. Wallace doesn’t care if I have lipstick on; she’s happy to have me in sweatpants. Having a relationship that transcends the bullshit feels so good.

Thank you so much, Gabrielle!

P.S. More folks share their beauty uniforms, including a brilliant transgender activist and a funny beauty writer.

(Wedding photos by Krisanne Johnson for Eloping Is Fun. All other photos courtesy of Gabrielle Korn.)

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