Drag Queen Makeup Tips from Priscilla Queen of the Desert's Pro Artist

Above, clockwise from left: MAC Lip Pencil in Vino, $13, available at MAC; MAC Wipes, $28, available at MAC; MAC Eyeshadow in Phloof!, $14.50, available at MAC.
Broadway may be called the Great White Way, but it's currently awash in color, courtesy of the just-opened Priscilla Queen of the Desert. Based on the '90s-era cult-classic film, Priscilla rocks the (packed) house with outrageously amazing, Swarovksi-decked campy costumes (like we've never seen before) and, of course, megawatt makeup. And behind the scenes you'll find makeup artist Justen Brosnan, the man responsible for bringing the eye-catching looks for the show's lovable drag queen divas to the stage each night. But since a Broadway musical is truly a juggling act of costume changes—and the Priscilla crew has around 70 wigs and 300 sets of false lashes on hand—it's no wonder Brosnan has a few makeup tricks up his sleeve. We were able to sneak backstage and snag some seriously useful pro tips (well, for an over-the-top night out) from the theater dynamo himself:
How to de-glitter: "Our actors don't have much time between scenes, and have to do things on the fly, so to quickly get the mix of glitter and pigments off their lips in time for the next scene, they kiss the sticky side of clear tape."
How to fix an eye makeup mistake: "Wrap a MAC makeup wipe around a Q-Tip and sweep the Q-Tip under the eye or along the lash line to pick up any shadow or liner mistakes. And at the end of the night, I use the MAC oil cleanser to get all the makeup off. You always have to take people's skin into consideration, and the oil cleansers takes everything off in the most gentle way."
How to go from the stage to everyday: "Theatrical makeup has to have longevity throughout the show and read well all the way to the back of the house, but the character Bernadette typically has more natural makeup. You can translate it into a night out look using some of my all time favorites: Phloof! eyeshadow, a mix of Vino lip liner and Mac Red lipstick, Peaches blush, and simple black liquid eyeliner."
Above, from left: MAC Lipstick Mac Red, $14.50, available at MAC; MAC Cleanse Off Oil, $24, available at MAC.

More from Makeup