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A Glowing Kelly Rowland Preps for VMAs

Joanna Douglas
Senior Editor
August 25, 2014

Photo: Christoper Polk/Getty Images

It’s been 14 years since Kelly Rowland made her MTV Video Music Award debut with Destiny’s Child. This year, the 33-year-old is expecting a baby boy (she was also up for Best Video With a Social Message Award, which went to Queen B), and let us in on her pre-show routine.

“At the VMAs you just never know what is going to happen, and it is such a spontaneous night,” Rowland says of the famously wild show. “It’s such an honor to be nominated for ‘Dirty Laundry,’ because I feel like I’ve done my part responsibly.” Her song with The Dream discusses the domestic abuse from which she suffered in a previous relationship, as well as her jealousy of Beyonce’s solo success. “I feel like it is a really courageous record, period. It is a great video, a great message, and I’m happy to be a part of it.”

Photo: Charley Galley

Award show or not, Rowland has one rule: “It is all about the skin.” She uses Caress Emerald Rush Body Wash ($3) and lots of hydrating skin products. “My counter is covered in different oils. Coconut oil to cocoa butters to shea butter.  And I drink lots of water and coconut water to stay hydrated and keep my skin looking good.” When Sheika Daley, Rowland’s long-time makeup artist, arrives, she says the singer’s pregnancy-induced glow makes her “job 10 times easier.” After a facial, she pressed ice cubes onto Rowland’s face to shrink her pores. “It helps her makeup sit on top of her skin and last all night,” she says. Daley swears by Smashbox Photo Finish Primer ($36) to keep her makeup in place, Ko Gen Do’s Foundation($62), a custom blend of Yves Saint Laurent lipsticks, and lipgloss on top. Rowland also help Daley design her custom lashes.

Meanwhile, hair stylist Tymothe Wallace created an ethereal crown of hair, using Oribe’s Apres-Beach Spray ($39) for “some texture and a little grit.” The final member of Rowland’s dream team is Jeanette Jenkins, the personal stylist she says keeps her spirit up. “I’ve put stretchy material in my very favorite pair of jeans, and they still don’t fit!” says Roland. “Pea in the Pod has definitely helped me out.” In terms of red carpet, she’s not stressing out. “I am not worried about pressure—I am owning this part of life. We all got here through life, so I am really not trippin’,” she says. “I think it is going to be a fun night. I am just so happy and this is such a beautiful moment. I can’t wait to meet this little person.” Kelly stepped onto the red carpet wearing a peachy pink KaufmanFranco gown, Jimmy Choo sandals, and Lorraine Schwartz jewels. “In the end it’s about whatever looks great on you and whatever is going to make you feel comfortable that night.” In her clutch? “My phone, my lip gloss, some little blotting papers, and a little bitty thing of glue for my lashes.” 

Photo: Charley Galley

Rowland’s tip for maintaining such a positive outlook? “Don’t surround yourself with negative people,” she says. “We don’t realize that it is so contagious, but you could actually wake up having a good day and somebody could say one little thing and you obsess over it. I used to read crazy comments online, and social media can be so challenging, especially for young people who are still coming into their identity. But don’t harp on the negative. Think of ten other things you like so much about yourself—and if you say you can’t find one, you’re a liar! You have to realize what you bring to the table as an individual that makes you unique and wonderful.”

Being pregnant isn’t just making Rowland’s skin glow, it’s also having a positive effect on her studio time. “You are thinking on a different level because you are a part of this amazing process of bringing life forward so you have to think about what you want to say and what you want your child to bring forth,” she says. And with that, she’s off to the show!