Tanya L’Amore

Tanya L’Amore is Tonee Roberio’s alter ego. I first met Tonee when I started working as a retail artist for MAC Cosmetics at the Pro store  in Foubert’s Place, Soho. Together we became part of the original Senior Make Up Artist team and travelled the world working at different Fashion Weeks. Tony later became Training Manager for MAC cosmetics in the Middle East and India. Currently he is working as an Educator at Illamasqua school of make up in London. Needless to say that Tonee is a professional that has a great knowledge of make up techniques and the industry. Tanya L’Amore was born a couple of years back and has never left Tonee’s side since.

Let’s speak to Miss L’Amore about her beauty secrets and make up routine.

When did you start doing drag and why? Please explain your drag name.
I first did drag back in the 80s just for a bit of fun, I used to dress up at home in the middle of the night when my family were asleep. I went out to some of the most famous dressing up/drag venues, like Madame Jojo’s and Kinky Gerlinky. My drag name was given to me by some friends as I looked like a Tanya (!) and I used to call everyone ‘love’ so L’Amore was then my given name.

Tell us about your Inspiration for your drag look
I take inspiration from Mathu Andersen as he also does bearded drag and is just an incredible makeup artist! Clothing wise I just let my imagination and the fabric flow.

What are your favourite products when doing drag makeup?
I love using Rich Liquid from Illamasqua as my base, as it’s very full coverage but doesn’t feel heavy at all. At the moment I am loving the Morphe 35c palette for the eyes and cheeks, Laura Mercier loose powder, lashes have to be No 301 lashes from the USA and Illamasqua lipsticks, because they are so pigmented and long-lasting.

Please share one of your make up secrets with our audience
Illamasqua black gel liner is great on the lips as it doesn’t move or feel like I’m wearing anything on them – then I use either a fine pigment or a glitter pressed on top.

Who is your favourite drag queen from the past and current? Why?
Danny La Rue would have to be one of my earliest memories of a drag queen as she was on national tv and my parents used to watch her!
I really love Bianca Del Rio as she is super funny and as an insult comic, she is very quick witted indeed.

What are the most common mistakes when applying drag make up?
Not blending. Blending blending blending!! it doesn’t take much effort at all to blend but so many drag queens don’t blend at all.

Where do you buy products for your drag make up?
Definitely Illamasqua, Urban Decay, Kryolan, Ben Nye and Anastasia Beverly Hills.

How long does it take you to apply your make up?
It can take me from 1.5 hours to sometimes up to 3 hours depending on the look and how much time I have!

Explain your drag make up routine
I generally start by shaving a bit of a shape and trimming my beard a bit, then I make sure I know what wig I’m going to wear as this would decide on the make up look I’m gonna do!

I then make sure I clean my skin well and use a primer, then block out the eyebrows with glue stick. Then I do foundation over the blocked out eyebrows and do my foundation on my forehead. Next comes brows and then I start working down from the brow to crease colour, lid colour, liner then lashes and any glitter or pigments. Finishing off the face with foundation then contouring and highlighting and finally lips and a bit of beard colouring if needed.

Where do you see drag in 5 years?
I think drag is going to be heading into more peoples’ homes and women are going to be getting involved and hopefully start drag shows with both men and women taking part.