Alicia Keys is no stranger to going makeup free. Here are 13 times she has worn little to no product.

Angela Weiss/Getty Images; Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagicAlicia Keys has been mostly makeup-free since 2016. Here, she’s pictured in 2010 (left) and 2020 (right).

Alicia Keys hosted the 2020 Grammys on Sunday night with a minimal makeup look, but it’s certainly not the first time the star has ditched the flashy looks typically seen during such a big event.

Keys wrote about her new relationship with makeup in an essay for the Lenny Letter in May 2016. She described a time when a photographer insisted on shooting her with no makeup for her album cover.

“I swear it is the strongest, most empowered, most free, and most honestly beautiful that I have ever felt,” Keys wrote in the essay.

Whether she’s on the red carpet or posting personal Instagram photos, Keys has been sticking to a minimal makeup look ever since. Sometimes she forgoes makeup completely, while other times she sticks with a light touch of foundation.

Here are 13 occasions where she has gone with little to no makeup.


Keys began opting for minimal makeup looks in 2016.

Evan Agostini/Invision/AP ImagesAlicia Keys at the NBCUniversal Upfront Presentation in May 2016.

Keys wrote in an essay for the Lenny Letter that a photo shoot with photographer PaolaKudacki for here album “Here” struck a chord with both herself and her fans.

“Once the photo I took with Paola came out as the artwork for my new song ‘In Common,’ it was that truth that resonated with others who posted #nomakeup selfies in response to this real and raw me,” she wrote.

Read Keys’ full essay on Lenny Letter.


Keys then wore her no-makeup look to the BET Awards in June 2016.

Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP ImagesAlicia Keys at the 2016 BET Awards.

This was one of the first major awards shows Keys attended with the subtle look.


She brought the movement to the MTV Video Music Awards red carpet in August 2016.

Evan Agostini/Invision/AP ImagesKeys made a red carpet staple in late 2016.

She arrived in a vibrant red and black dress.


Keys took to Twitter in August 2016 to clarify some of her thoughts on the “no makeup” movement.

Andy Kropa/Invision/AP ImagesAlicia Keys at the Keep a Child Alive’s 13th Annual Black Ball in October 2016.

“Y’all, me choosing to be makeup free doesn’t mean I’m anti-makeup,” Keys wrote alongside a makeup-free selfie on Twitter. “Do you!”


Keys then brought her signature look to NBC’s “The Voice.”

NBC/Getty ImagesKeys joined the panel of judges in 2016.

Keys joined the show for its 11th season in 2016.


Keys framed her face in a bold red outfit for the 2016 Billboard Women In Music event.

Evan Agostini/Invision/AP ImagesAlicia Keys at the 2016 Billboard Women in Music event.

She paired the look with an oversized wide-brimmed black hat.


She brought the look to the performance stage during an appearance on the “Today” show in September 2016.

Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty ImagesKeys performing on the ‘Today’ show.

She wore a black blazer with multicoloured sleeves.


She then performed at the Grammys in February 2017, two years before hosting the annual ceremony.

Jeff Kravitz/Getty ImagesAlicia Keys performed at the Grammys in 2016.

She wore a black jumpsuit with tons of sparkly silver details.


Keys also proved the look was perfect for Paris Fashion Week in March 2017.

Thibault Camus/Getty ImagesAlicia Keys during Paris Fashion Week 2017.

The star pulled the minimal makeup look off effortlessly during the major fashion event.


She kept it going in January 2018 with an appearance at the Recording Academy Producers & Engineers Wing Grammy event.

Angela Weiss/Getty ImagesAlicia Keys at the Recording Academy Producers & Engineers Wing Grammy event in January 2018.

She accessorized with hoop earrings and deep-red nail polish for a touch of colour in her mostly black ensemble.


She walked the red carpet of the 2018 Grammy Awards in January 2018.

Charles Sykes/Getty ImagesAlicia Keys at the 2018 Grammys.

She wore an all-black ensemble to match her subtle makeup look.


Keys most kept her makeup low-key for the 2019 Grammys.

Steve Granitz/WireImage via Getty ImagesAlicia Keys and Swizz Beatz attend the 2019 Grammys.

Refinery29 reports that Keys kept her makeup subtle with a $US15 foundation from Burt’s Bees.

She still managed to make a bold statement on the red carpet with an eye-catching red gown by Armani Privé.


She later changed into a teal Oscar de la Renta jumpsuit during the ceremony.

Matt Sayles/Invision/APKeys had several outfit changes during the 2019 Grammys.

She paired the ensemble with a printed Emilio Pucci headscarf.


She later changed into a pair of sparkling Balmain trousers during the awards show.

Matt Sayles/Invision/AP ImagesAlicia keys hosting the 2019 Grammys.

She paired the eye-catching pants with a black wide-brimmed hat and the $US165 Irving Bodysuit by Alix.


Keys also changed into an eye-catching red jumpsuit by Oscar de la Renta.

Matt Sayles/Invision/AP ImagesShe then wore a jumpsuit with a matching cape overlay.

The jumpsuit had a sheer cape overlay for a glamorous touch.


Though Keys continues to keep her makeup minimal, she told Allure in 2017 that she has not completely sworn off cosmetics.

Matt Sayles/Invision/APAlicia Keys wearing a leather jumpsuit during the 2019 Grammy Awards.

“I’m not a slave to makeup,” Keys told Allure in January 2017.“I’m not a slave to not wearing makeup either. I get to choose at [any] given moment. That’s my right.”


Most recently, Keys hosted the 2020 Grammys, wearing natural makeup.

Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagicKeys hosted the 62nd Annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles on Sunday, January 26, 2020.

Keys started the evening wearing a metallic Versace gown with a one-shoulder silhouette and crystal-embroidered neckline.


Keys wore her hair braided and styled in a bun with handmade chiffon accessories and Swarovski crystals placed along her forehead.

Kevork Djansezian/Getty ImagesAlicia Keys at the 2020 Grammys.

Brooklyn-based hair accessory designer Jennifer Behr collaborated with Keys’ hairstylist, Nai’vasha, to create a unique look for the 2020 Grammys host.

An Instagram post from Behr detailed Keys’ hairstyle for the awards show: “Nai’vasha wanted stunning full crystal looks that looked like they were floating in the hair so we worked with our embroiderers to develop chiffon pieces hand-embroidered with thousands and thousands of crystals – this way Naivasha could wrap them around the hair on the day of – and then we gave her hundreds of Swarovski crystals to individually float in the hair. You can see them on her spiral edges here.”


Keys revealed in a 2019 skin-care routine video that she uses a $US25 sulphur anti-blemish cream to treat her zits, keeping her skin impurity-free.

Kevork Djansezian/Getty ImagesAlicia Keys at the 2020 Grammys.

Keys said in her December 2019 skin-care routine YouTube video that she uses the Advanced Anti-Blemish Lotion from Advanced SkinCare, which is $US25.

“If you’ve ever gone to places that have sulphur, it’s like when you’re driving down the highway and you smell that egg smell, and everybody in the car is like ‘Oh, who farted?’ That’s sulphur. It smells like a fart,” Keys said. “But whatever the case, sulphur is the bomb.”

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