Despite the blinding glamour on Oscar night, stars are -- wait for it -- just like us. Under all that Dior, they too wear tummy-sucking granny panties, don't fit into couture evening wear without help from serious adhesives, and, if we're being truthful here, should credit their healthy glow to something other than their heavenly descent to Earth.

So, what are the biggest secrets to staying smooth, matte and put together on the red carpet? We asked the stars behind the stars: the makeup artists, fashion stylists and top-secret sister act behind every A-lister's hair extensions. To begin with, celebrity stylist Art Conn swears, "The best accessory is confidence, and the rest of it will fall into place."

But come now, we all know it takes a little more magic than that. And these pros were more than happy to share.


Hair Extensions: It's the rare A-lister who hits the red carpet without a fab mane her mama didn't give her, say sisters Monica Selenikio and Sara Sierra, hair-extension specialists many consider Hollywood's best-kept secret. "Everyone wants Victoria's Secret hair," Selenikio says. And that's just what clients like Lady Gaga and Madonna get. (Though regular Janes have access to a great variety of extensions now, too.) The appeal? Extensions give what you've got more length, volume and color. Consider Sarah Jessica Parker's serious updo -- practically an accessory in its own right.


Flawless Foundation
: Face it, your face is your biggest selling point. To get your skin HD-ready, L.A. makeup artist Aura Schwartz-Rosenblatt can't say enough about Nars Sheer Glow foundation. "It's incredible. It's not too heavy and still makes it look like your own skin's coming through," she says. In fact, she loves it so much, she wears it herself and swears it gets the red out while still allowing her freckles to shine. And with 15 shades to choose from, perfection is pretty much attainable -- unless, say, you're Na'vi.


Body Slimmers: Undergarments are a gown's best friend. And any woman who's had to stuff her butt into a bridesmaid's dress knows Spanx is a woman's BFF (sorry, other girlfriends.) "There have been a lot of imitators," says Conn. "I've tried them all, and I always keep going back to the Spanx." No surprise, this smoothing operator has gone high-tech: The Slim Cognito Seamless Mid-Thigh Bodysuit (pictured) comes up high to cover the torso, and features an anchoring bra clip to keep everything in place.

Boob-Taming Tape: When going low-cut or funky-strapped, no one wants nipple slippage. Enter: Fashion-Fix double-sided tape. Its predecessor, Topstick, from the same manufacturer, is the industry standard in adhering clothes to skin (and toupees to noggins, its original use). But it's hard for anyone but pros to get their hands on the stuff. Lucky for us, Fashion-Fix is readily available in perfectly purse-sized packs of 10. Its most infamous use? J. Lo's green uber low-cut Versace dress from the 2000 Grammys. "That had to have been Topsticked from head to navel," wagers Conn.

Strobe Cream:
There's no better way to get your glow on than strategically applied light-catching war paint. Celebrity makeup artist Rosemary Redlin recommends MAC Strobe Cream for use on arms, legs and the perennially sexy décolletage whenever flash bulbs pop. For the face, Givenchy's Touch of Light Pen is perfect for bedazzling neck-up features."It brings a glow to the face, it's very easy to use because it comes in a little click pen, and it looks good on a lot of different skin tones," says Redlin.

Something else that looks good on everyone? The self-assured smile you'll be wearing once you know nothing's going to jiggle, shine, or slip.


Sandra Kofler is a freelance writer/TV addict/fool for pop culture who's written for Entertainment Weekly, Spin, Novaya Gazeta (Moscow), The Village Voice and TV Guide. If you see her in a bar, buy her a drink -- she just blew all her cash testing gravity's influence on fashion tape.



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