If you saw Crazy Rich Asians and laughed, it was largely because of Nora Lum, who also goes by the stage name Awkwafina. Aside from her bona fides as a talented comedian (she's also in Jumanji: The Next Level, out next month), Lum is a dramatic actor (see the touching Asian-American family drama The Farewell) and a rapper. Now we’re adding another line to her résumé: beauty commentator. Lum has very specific opinions on body positivity, why makeup is mystifying, and when face cream can't be trusted, and she told it all to contributing editor Jessica Chia.
"I don't understand makeup. How do people freehand-draw an eyebrow on their face? Not only one, but two eyebrows? There's no stencil; there's no reference; our faces aren’t lined. I don’t understand it. The night I played my first big show, [my DJ and my hype man] did my makeup."
On body positivity:
"I look like a thumb. During my teenage years, I was uncomfortable with my body, but the older I get, the more I accept that it’s something I won't be able to change. I look like a thumb. And it's OK. People tell me that working out is nice. But for the most part, I think the most positive thing you can do for your body is accept it."
On bougie beauty:
"Holding La Mer is like holding a steak. When I was in Atlanta shooting Jumanji, I went to the Sisley counter at Neiman Marcus, and the woman sold me this eye cream that comes with a little roller. That was probably the most expensive beauty product I've ever had, aside from the time my makeup artist gave me a bottle of La Mer cleanser. Holding La Mer is like holding a $500 steak. I bring that same bottle with me everywhere I go, but I only use it once or twice [during each trip]. The smallest little droplet makes me really happy."
"I don't trust moisturizers that have a good smell. I like the ones from Neutrogena or the True Cream Aqua Bomb from Belif. It has to have a certain consistency — I like to be able to feel the moisture. And I don’t trust moisturizers that have a good smell. Because if you're busy smelling really great, what aren't you doing?"
Now, check out these stories:
- Lady Gaga: The Power of Makeup
- Hollywood, Anne Hathaway Loves You — But You're Bringing Her Down
- Gemma Chan Wants to End Whitewashing — In Hollywood and in History Books
Now, see how to do a French braid on yourself:
Originally Appeared on Allure