Sarah Kinonen
May 24, 2016 08:51 PM

Over the years, we’ve come to know (and love) Gwen Stefani’s signature beauty look: a winged eye and bold lip accented with her equally bright platinum blonde tresses. So when the singer took a break from her go-to makeup move for the Billboard Music Awards, fans went a little, well, B-A-N-A-N-A-S. And now, the man behind Stefani’s Sunday night beauty look, celebrity makeup artist Gregory Arlt, is stepping to her defense, saying that makeup is about having fun above all else.

Lester Cohen/BBMA2016/Getty

When Stefani stepped onto the stage to perform her duet with new boo Blake Shelton, she sported a surprising luminous skin look complemented with a nude lip, bare eye and bold brow — that garnered almost as much attention as the lovebirds themselves. And considering fans went as far as to Photoshop her old look back on, Arlt shared his own take on the look, which he shared on Facebook.

“Well, the armchair warriors out there in social media land had some very strong opinions about this makeup look I did on Gwen for the Billboard Awards,” the makeup pro wrote on his Facebook page. “It’s basically what we’ve always been doing, just no upper liner or false lashes (and yes, a pale lip as opposed to a color). You’d think I sent her out with tinted moisturizer and Chapstick from what people were saying!”

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He continued, adding that he loves trying out new looks on the singer, as she’s an amazing makeup muse: “Gwen is the ultimate Barbie head — we love experimenting and trying new things; sometimes subtle (Ooh! A pink lip! Ahh! Lining her eyes with shadow instead of liquid!) and sometimes dramatic (I bleached her eyebrows for the ‘Push And Shove’ video and sent her out onstage for the awards performance with a nude, pared down [’90s] supermodel, sun-kissed look).”

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But at the end of the day, Arlt says people aren’t always going to love what he does — and he’s perfectly okay with that.

“Bottom line? We had fun. One of the best times getting her ready, with a room full of people who adore each other, laughing and cracking jokes while reveling in the excitement of performing a number one song on an awards show,” he wrote. “Some loved it, some did not, but people were talking which I suppose is never a bad thing. The positive outweighed the ‘constructive’ and bottom line is that makeup is the ultimate disposable accessory — have fun with it and take it off at the end of the night!”

So, whether or not you were a fan of the singer’s beauty look for the BBMAs, Arlt is right — no matter what, makeup should be fun. So don’t take it too seriously!

What did you think of the singer’s makeup look for the Billboard Music Awards? Were you a fan? Share below!

–Sarah Kinonen

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