Noelle Scaggs of Fitz and the Tantrums Talks Beauty Onstage and Off

Can we get a “Handclap” for her makeup looks?
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Publish date:
December 8, 2016
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musicians, Noelle Scaggs, Fitz And The Tantrums, beauty interview, Tour Beauty

Noelle Scaggs AKA the lady of LA-based indie pop group Fitz and the Tantrums is goals when it comes to her powerhouse vocals, killer style, ever-changing hair and makeup looks, infectious personality, and super heroine levels of energy. Seriously, spend a few hours at a FATT show and your eyes get tired just from watching her zip back and forth across the stage all night at a lightening quick pace with a tambourine in her hand.

She’s basically the coolest and I’m slightly obsessed with her. Super fan (me) is having a moment, okay? Which is why I obviously wanted to interview her about what it’s like touring with a bunch of dudes, what products she can’t get enough of (because I need to know these things) and just how in the hell she gets those abs because I’d like to think there’s a lazy girl way to do that (turns out there’s not, but I’m not giving up hope.)

Now please enjoy this Q&A while I go play “Handclap” on repeat.

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The Santa Barbara Bowl show. Photo credit @stevekennedy14 #getrightbacktour

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You’re always on the road with a bunch of dudes, what are your must-have products for bringing the glam to the group?

I’ve been all about my Boscia Black Charcoal Cleansing Cloths and their Revitalizing Black Hydration Gel for my everyday cleansing and moisturizing. Charcoal is great for pulling impurities from the skin and balancing out oily and dry areas. I also recommend their Charcoal Pore-Minimizing Hydrogel Mask — I use this once a month at home and it’s life-changing. They’ve been working wonders for my skin, dealing with the various climates I have encountered on the road. As for fragrance, my favorite is Le Labo ‘Iris 39’ eau de parfum. I keep the solid perfume in my makeup bag for easy access.

Be honest, which products do the guys steal from you?

Fitz is NOTORIOUS for putting his paws on my expensive lotions and face products. I had to hide my cleansing wipes to keep him from sneaking around stealing all of them. It’s pretty hilarious.

Do you have having beauty bonding time with the guys? Face masks together? Sharing a mutual love of eye cream?

Fitz and I often share hair dye, so he’s seen me at my finest hours. Especially my bleach blonde days when I had to lighten the eye brows. I’m pretty sure he has blackmail photos lying around somewhere on his iPhone.

What else have you switched up over the years?

I’ve evolved into someone who is more open to experimenting with my look. I think becoming the age I am now (37), I have a comfort level that I didn’t have when I was in my early 20s. I have never been one to wear a ton of makeup and I still try to stay away from it unless I have to be on television, but I have become more open to trying out crazy lip and hair colors — things that I wouldn’t have done, say four years ago. In the last year I’ve changed my hair color six times and have been everything from blonde to purple. I love changing my look to fit my mood, especially during new record cycles. I think being able to reinvent yourself keeps things fresh — something we really love doing with our music as well.

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Oldies are still goodies #GoldenYears

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Being that you’re under hot lights running around onstage all the time, you must have some tips for avoiding the dreaded makeup melt off. What are they?

Avoid it by using great waterproof foundations. I’m way too active during our shows to think about how I look, so I choose products like Make Up For Ever that won’t melt down my face half way through our performance set. They have amazing pigments for African-American skin tones, and they don’t weigh my face down with heavy oils. They also have great coverage so I don’t need to use a ton of it. In addition to my Boscia products, I also use SkinCeuticals Blemish and Age Defense Serum to keep my skin clear.

Let's talk about your covetable ‘do — what products do you swear by for your natural look?

I’m a rebel so my hairstylist Yukari Yokomizo and I decided we were going to mohawk my hair. It’s funny because I have been blessed — or should I say cursed — with curly hair that’s not humidity-friendly. I was having a ton of issues with it looking dull and dry with no definition in my curls, and there weren’t any products that made it better until I discovered Miss Jessie’s in a CVS on our last trip to New Orleans. Their leave-in conditioner is great because it doesn’t leave my hair feeling heavy or smelly if I can’t wash it for a week. The Coily Custard is amazing as well and they’re not expensive!

What's the #1 beauty trend you're obsessed with right now?

I’ve been loving poppy lip colors with almost bare, minimal makeup. I do it on the regular so it makes me feel pretty cool to know that it is something popular in the fashion world as well. I also love the bare lip look. I use MAC Velvettease Pencil in Oh Honey when I want a natural daytime glow, and I go poppy with the Just My Type shade for the perfect pink. I’m also obsessed with Lime Crime Matte Lipstick in Wicked. I use it on tour often since it’s the perfect shade of deep red. I’m a cat eyeliner kind of girl, so everything for me is about the lip and the blush.

Any beauty icons you have a lady crush on?

I have always been a fan of Gwen Stefani. I love how she always experiments with different styles and how she can reinvent her look like no one else. I always strive for that. It’s also something I loved about Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast At Tiffany’s. It’s my favorite film — the styling was to die for.

What's your worst beauty habit on the road?

My diet. It’s really hard to eat well on the road. I have to consume so many calories, and often it is difficult to balance that out with living foods. Of course diet affects everything, so If I’m too lazy on being conscious about what I’m eating it shows up in my face. Smack dab in the middle of my forehead normally.

Tell me more about these bad food choices AKA your ultimate cravings:

Lately anything with a bun attached to it, haha. It really depends on where we are. For instance, I can’t go to Kansas City and not have the BBQ and baked beans, and if I’m in NYC it’s a tradition that I hit Shake Shack at least once during the trip and sit in the park, or visit The Dutch or Toro. I really try hard to be healthy, but it’s so hard because there are so many cities that we visit where mac and cheese is the must have. Kale salads or roasted brussels sprouts are the thing to do.

Speaking of mac ’n' cheese, you also have a food and travel Instagram. Which three places are next to visit on your bucket list?

I would like to spend some more time in South America in general, but I’m really drawn towards Peru and Chile right now. I’ve never been in a lot of areas of South America outside of Argentina and Brazil and I would love to see the amazing things I’ve heard about — exploring the Andes and seeing the historic ruins of Peru and eating the food. I would also like to visit Hong Kong because I am obsessed with K-Pop Culture. I would love to check out the music scene there.

What would you blow all of your money on to look good?

I’m a clothes addict. It’s a sickness and depending on where I am — either New York or Seattle — you’ll often find me at Totokaelo or Curve. I’m also a sucker for packaging, which is why I may be stocked up on Le Labo for the rest of the year.

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Photo by @emilyshur #LosAngelesMagazine #tbt PR.1

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What’s a cool story behind one of your tattoos?

I have 10 tattoos, I think? My most recent one was done in Vancouver, one of three that I have gotten there in the last few years. I love where I placed this one, which is on my left arm written down my forearm. It says: ”La vie mérite d'être vécue,” which translates to: Life Is Worth Living. Yes, like Justin Beiber's song. I really identify with the message behind that track and I am a huge fan of French culture, so this tattoo is my ode to both. My others have all been done during various periods of my life and they all relate to transformation and connection to the spirit and the universe. All are Egyptian oriented as well.

Tell me how I can get your abs without having to actually work out:

I’m pretty strict with my routine when I’m at home, which means one hour every other day of my work out plan and I run two times a week. My diet is pretty strict as well, but I give myself the weekends to eat whatever I want. I try and give my body a break during touring because of the amount of cardio I do onstage. Rest is sometimes more important than trying to keep my core defined. We’ve been traveling with my dog, so when I can, I take her on hikes. I have my days off to hone into core work and my trainer in LA, Lou Becker, keeps me on my toes by sending me videos of new movements I can do. I go about 20-30 minutes and then spend the rest of my time sleeping and exploring.

Well, I can definitely get into that last part!