Gloria Shuri Nava is the queen of internet makeup tutorials. This girl is kooky, kinda filthy, clearly smart, and definitely mesmerizing.
The 23-year-old San Jose native showed America how to slap on face paint like Natalie Portman's character in Black Swan while making funny tasteless jokes. She's walked us through the Na'vi face of Avatar, and she's got a knack for breaking down the look of pop stars. Her latest tutorial covers Britney Spears' appearance with panache, sarcasm, and humor.
The Mexican-Filipino American has over three million views on her YouTube channel Glowpinkstah. George Lopez even got this internet sensation on his show Lopez Tonight to give Sandra Bullock a chola makeover. (That's chonga if you're from Miami.)
This chick is funny and nuts. And we've been dying to ask her about her own makeup regimen, her parody of Britney's "Hold It Against Me," and the mean stuff people on the interweb say to funny girls like her.
Crossfade: Did Sandra Bullock know she was getting a makeover on Lopez Tonight, and was that tension real? She seemed all sassy.
Gloria Nava: I'll say this. The first time I met her was when I told her how horribly dressed she looked onstage.
You talked a bit about Britney looking like an "innocent girl" in the tutorial. What defines her look for you?
In my video, I call her an innocent bad girl. I guess what I meant by that was that she was putting up an innocent front while she wanted to get her freak on in the video. But what defines her look for me, in general, I guess is that she does look like a really sweet person who can play sexy. Britney looks sweet and sexy in all her videos.
Did you write the "Hold It Against Me" parody? If so, what prompted it? Like what made you pick this song?
Yes, I did write the parody. When I heard the song for the first time, all I could think of was dirty things. I guess I have a dirty mind. [Laughs.] But not all the time, I promise.
Are you a Britney fan?
Yes! I love Britney! I went to see her Good Morning America performance in San Francisco, and I just saw her concert in June. My favorite songs by her are "Toxic," "Don't Let Me Be the Last to Know," "Sometimes," "Crazy" ... I guess a lot of her older stuff.
What's it like being internet famous? Do people stop you on the street and want hugs?
It's so weird getting asked that question. I don't consider myself famous, because my idea of famous is what you typically see in Hollywood. But yes, I do get stopped for hugs and pictures on the street when I'm out. And it shocks me every time. I recently visited some friends in Kansas City, Missouri, and my friend came up to me to tell me that one of the people that worked there was coming up to bring me a drink because they loved my videos. I thought he was lying, but he was telling the truth! She brought me a drink and I was shocked that even out in Missouri people are watching me.
What's the worst, cruelest thing anyone's ever said to you about your videos?
Eh, people call me fat. That's their favorite thing to say. I don't ever deny that I'm fat. That's really all they can come up with to say about me. But people try to get really creative and it doesn't work. It literally just makes me laugh. They're a bunch of trolls living under a bridge. If I lived under a bridge, I'd want to take out my anger out on someone else too.They bring in the views, so I guess that's what matters ... Buhaha!
You talk about just about anything, including making funny, critical remarks about race and weight. Is there anything you won't joke about?
Well, the way I think is, it only becomes a problem if you truly believe these things. Like with race, I pick on my Mexican side and make us all look like we're a chola who pronounces words funny and just sounds stupid. I also pick on my Filipino side by exaggerating what my Filipino relatives are like. But obviously, not everyone is like that. I'll joke about pretty much everything, even myself. I don't take these things seriously and those that do are just insecure about themselves.
How'd you learn to do makeup?
My junior year in High School, I went to the MAC store at the mall. I went to get my makeup done for prom and the girl showed me what she was doing. And that's it. [Laughs.] I pretty much memorized what she told me.
How would the tutorial look and sound if you did one describing your own personal everyday look? Can you give me a little play-by-play?
Sure! First, I start off with the eyes. In my videos, I already have my face done, and that's just 'cause I don't want to look like a complete scary monster. It's a mock tutorial, really. So to me, it doesn't really matter. I'll apply a good base. I use Two Faced Shadow Insurance, but a really good concealer works too. Next, I'll apply a highlight. I like to do this first because, if I'm doing a lighter eye, it also helps pop the eyeshadow more. I'll add the lid color, then the crease, and if I'm feeling dramatic, add black to the outer corners. I always apply black eyeliner on the top lid because I think it just looks pretty. I don't normally add mascara just by itself because on me it looks really awkward. I have to use eyeliner. If it's just an everyday thing, I stop after the eyeliner because I really only wear mascara when I'm going out somewhere fancy.
Once I finish the eyes, I'll do my foundation. The reason is if I mess up on my eyeshadow, I won't have to take off and reapply the foundation around my cheeks, or wherever fallout there is. I apply a moisturizer and let that sit for a few seconds. I use a Cover Girl liquid concealer for blemishes, and a darker concealer from MAC under my eyes. Then I'll go ahead and use my MAC Studio Fix powder foundation.
Then, I'll apply my favorite everyday blush. I use Super Orgasm by Nars. It has this really pretty gold glitter in it and it makes me feel fancy. [Laughs.]
Last, I'll put on a light lip gloss. Something that will add a little bit of shimmer and not something that will blind people when I walk outside.
Can you tell me about your clothing line?
I have a t-shirt store on Spreadshirt. One of my good friends helped me design the ones with my face on it. No matter how many times I look at the shirts, I feel awkward looking at my face on a shirt. I can't believe it's me. [Laughs] There's a shirt for pretty much every character of mine. The top-selling shirt is one that says, "PAQ YOO!," from my character Tita Auntie. I had no idea how popular this character was until I saw that about a quarter of my shirts sold were Tita Auntie shirts.
I think your videos are empowering because they're hilarious, and you're clearly a really talented, confident woman. Would you consider yourself a feminist?
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I would consider myself a feminist in the sense that women should be treated as equals to men. If a woman wants to do what a man is doing, fine, do it. But at the same time, I like to make "teh funniez" and I think it's funny when people make kitchen jokes. But like I said before, I don't truly believe that women should be slaving in kitchens, it's just funny to hear that people used to... and I guess still do, think that's a woman's place. And to be clear, if someone tried to boss me around and tell me to make them a sandwich I'll either make it, then throw it in their face, or tell them to get off their butts and make it.
What are your insecurities being out there on the internet? Are you worried people won't think you're funny? Do you care?
I'd have to say that I'm not really insecure about anything anyone says about me, it's more so what people will say about my family and friends that are sometimes in videos with me. If people don't think I'm funny, oh well! I can't please everyone. I really don't care because as long as I'm having fun I don't care what people think.