Welcome to Vanity Affairs – an editorial series where we document the early morning beauty routines of notable men and women.
There are some people who have an I-can’t-put-my-finger-on-it kind of glow – a certain je ne sais quoi, if you will. You know the ones – their hair falls just right, their skin is dewy but never shiny, and they exude confidence without being arrogant.
In the interest of public service, we’ve set about tracking these aforementioned unicorns down to find out their secrets. So far, GP has spoken to model Georgia Fowler, personal shopper Gabriel Waller and fashion designer Lillian Khallouf (amongst others).
Next up, we have Queer Eye’s resident grooming expert Jonathan Van Ness.
On the show, Van Ness (or JVN for short) comes across as the affable gay best friend that you always wanted. A hairdresser by trade, he uses his skills to help each participant to feel better in their own skin with a fresh ‘do and an easy to implement beauty routine.
Queer Eye aside, Van Ness is a passionate advocate for LGBTQIA rights and identifies as non-binary (he goes by the pronouns he/him/his, she/her and they/them). He is also a proud Democrat and a very conscious consumer. So we were intrigued when Van Ness announced that he was the new face of Biossance – he doesn’t strike us as someone who would put his name to a brand without doing his due diligence first. “Biossance is committed to making a positive impact while pursuing their passion of creating fabulous efficacious skincare,” Van Ness tells Gritty Pretty. “I’ve always wanted to pursue my passions and make a positive impact, so it feels like a perfect fit.”
Biossance considers itself a ‘clean’ brand (read: sustainable and non-toxic) and has banned over 2,000 potentially harmful ingredients. If you’re concerned about what you’re putting on your skin, Van Ness says body moisturiser is a good place to start. “The first step is to even just swap out one product you use daily and on the largest surface of your body,” he says. “I think it’s about getting into the habit of being curious about your products. Ask questions and read ingredients, educate yourself and I think you will naturally find that you continue to make swaps with the rest of your routine.”
For a grooming expert, Van Ness’ beauty routine is on the simple side. Here, every single product he uses in the morning – start to finish.
Each day, Van Ness starts with Biossance Squalane + Marine Algae Eye Cream ($89): “I love how moisturizing and quickly absorbing it is.” Then he uses Biossance Squalane + Omega Repair Cream ($91): “It primes skin for makeup if I’m wearing it and is really readily absorbed.”
Biossance Squalane + Tea Tree Balancing Oil [not currently available in Australia] keeps his skin in check: “I love how the tea tree oil works to keep my skin decongested and the squalane seals it in and primes my skin for sunscreen and makeup.”
Of course, his skin care routine wouldn’t be complete without a generous application of sunscreen.
“If I wear makeup I love Biossance Omega Repair Cream mixed with Cover FX Power Play Concealer ($47) to make my own tinted moisturizer. Biossance Rose Vegan Lip Balm ($30) doubles as brow gel and lip balm – the rose smells amazing yet light.”
“I love to wash and wear with my natural waves. Silk pillowcases help to make sure that your hair doesn’t create friction breakage. I use Shu Uemura Wonder Worker Blow Dry Perfector ($47) – it’s light and controls frizz and can be used to air dry or blow dry. Then, I’ll use Olaplex No. 7 Bonding Oil ($50) and Olaplex No. 6 Bond Smoother ($50) as a leave-in conditioner.”
“If I blow dry, I will add mousse for a bit of movement and longevity. I love the Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer ($549) because it is so light and easy to use.”
Who would you like to see Gritty Pretty interview next? Tell us in the comments below.