How Lana Condor Navigated Beauty Growing Up With Adoptive Mom

Lana Condor’s beauty evolution was a voyage of self-discovery as she grew up with a mom who “looks completely different than I do.” 

“I’m Asian American. I grew up in a household that was not Asian at all, but my brother was Asian,” Condor, 26, told Allure in an interview published on Thursday, July 13. “My parents did a really fantastic job of always encouraging me to know where I came from. However, I kind of grew up the way they grew up.” 

Condor explained that when it came to makeup and skincare, she had to figure out things for herself as her mom “could only help me so much.” 

“I’m adopted,” she told Allure. “The products that work for [my mom] don’t work for me. Ways of application for her don’t work for me because I am Vietnamese and she’s Irish …. We have different faces, different features.” 

Navigating the world of glam was also challenging as Condor began to act with specific roles requiring her to look a specific way. “I know that I might look beautiful, but I don’t feel like myself,” she told the publication.

Lana Condor Talks Beauty Growing Up in Non Asian Household

Lana Condor

With so many influences, however, Condor has managed to find herself. “In my everyday life, I’m not going to do what they did to my face because sometimes in this industry — and this sounds dramatic — you feel like your face isn’t your face or your body isn’t yours.” 

As she’s gotten older, Condor has discovered what works for her. “I love a fresh face. I’ll do a heavy beat if I have to, and I love it. It’s one of my favorite things. I love graphic eyes,” she said in the interview.  “I love big, bold lips. But when it comes to everyday looks, [my To All the Boys character] Lara Jean always looked very fresh.” 

Condor’s work in film has also helped her learn more about Asian culture. “The movie that I’m on right now is interesting,” Condor told Allure. “They were very specific about my appearance because it’s an all-Asian cast.” 

“My understanding [of that] is that in America, we love contour. We love a little bit more of a sculpted look,” Condor shared with the magazine. “I love lashes and I love a snatched look. When I’m doing my makeup every day, I’m getting in the contour and I’m going to the bronzer. I’m getting in there. But the direction was to be ‘more classically Asian beauty from Asia’ — so no lashes, no contour. More of, like, ‘glass’ skin, kind of inspired by K-beauty.” 

While Condor did not mention the film by name, it was announced in June that she was cast in Worth the Wait an indie romantic comedy with all-Asian costars. 

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