Ask a professional

Ask a Professional: Makeup Artist

Cover those dark circles, once and for all.

By: Alicia Cesaro
Illustration: Meghann Stephenson

If you've been following along (you have, right?) you know that in our latest series, Ask a Professional, we've done just that: call upon the top dermatologists, trainers and hair stylists to answer all your burning questions. And, turns out you have a lot more where that came from, specifically in the beauty department. So, this week we got the DL from a few of the best makeup artists in the industry. Because while it's their 9-5 to keep clients looking campaign-ready (a.k.a flawless and fresh-faced), their tricks weren't exactly included in mom's makeup basics 101 waaay back when. So, yeah, we could all learn a thing or two. Below they tackle everything from concealing acne and dark circles (the banes of our existence), to layering skincare, keeping eyeshadow on your, um, eyelid and their all-time favorite brands. You can thank them when your makeup is still (magically) intact at 5PM.

 

How to REALLY conceal your dark circles. I know you have some magic trick to help us

— @anabarandela

“To best conceal your dark circles this should do the trick. Start with a good eye cream to combat any dryness. Use a creamy concealer that is not too thin in consistency. To cover greenish dark circles choose a pink toned concealer, to cover purple dark circles choose a yellow toned concealer. Don’t go overboard, only cover the dark circle and don’t use a concealer that is too light, your best shade will be 1/2 a shade lighter than your skin tone.”

- Simone Otis

 

“The trick to hiding under eye circles is by using the right shade. Although the instinct may be to pack on the concealer for heavier coverage, the last thing you should do is apply too much product, which will always in the end look like, too much product. My philosophy is to work smarter not harder. I base it on color theory which I glean from my painting background, for example: green cancels out red, orange cancels out blue. After using the color corrector, you will still need to apply your usual routine of either matching foundation, tinted moisturizer or concealer. Make sure you always tap on the product instead of moving it around from side to side Finish with a translucent powder or something super fine like Laura Mercier Secret Brightening Powder which does magic.”

- Souhi

 

 

“My favorite trick is to apply a very cold or wet ice filled face towel compress to the eye area. It helps the circulation get going and reduces puffiness. When all else fails, the Chantecaille Camouflage Corrector Pen with a little Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage gets the job done!”

- Lisa Aharon

 

 

“I start with a good eye cream, I love Fresh eye cream and if the eyes look really tired and puffy I love using the Le Mieux eye pads, they really work. Then I use Clé de peau concealer which I apply with my finger tips .this concealer is creamy and it really covers without looking caky. I end up with a very little application of translucent powder. A little amount goes a long way. I use a little Q-tip to remove excess from fine lines. You don’t want to see the make up sitting on the lines.”

- Paco Blancas

 

What is the best method for acne coverage?

— @pinkcupcake314

“Choose a concealer that is on the dry and thick side to cover acne. Dab the product on using a small concealer brush to cover it from all angles, instead of your finger. Using a brush makes it easier to apply a light, even layer so dabbing the product on using a brush will get the best coverage. Choose a concealer shade that is not too light, that will only highlight the little guy. Once you’ve covered the spots with concealer, continue with a light layer of foundation and set wit a translucent loose powder.”

- Simone Otis

 

“Covering up acne just requires a little time and patience. I first start with a good primer. My favorite is Kiehl's Micro Blur Skin Perfector. It's a primer that's non comedogenic and doesn't have parabens but helps smooths your skin’s surface while doing good. If you suffer from oiliness try Becca Ever Matte Poreless Priming Perfector. To cover hyperpigmentation from acne scars or redness use a green or yellow color corrector. I like to use a small detail brush for this like a lipstick brush then I blend out with a concealer brush. I tend to find using your fingers will just move the product around too much and using the right brush and tools will help with your artistry. Next tap a light amount of translucent powder directly onto the areas that you used the corrector on with a small eyeshadow brush to help prevent product from sliding around. Afterwards use a concealer that matches your skin tone. My favorite for covering acne is Kevin Aucoin Sensual Skin enhancer. It's super emollient and elastic and provides extreme coverage or can be sheered out with moisturizer for a lighter finish. A little goes a long way and the trick is to take your time and blend and use the same small brush method. Apply your normal routine of skin coverage under eyes, around the nose or a light foundation if you need, being careful not to disturb the covered areas. Finish by patting on a matching colored powder with a brush. My favorites are YSL and Makeup Forever powders because they don't have any iridescence which will only emphasize pores and bumpy skin texture.”

- Souhi

 

 

“When concealing breakouts or nasty spots on the skin, I like to use a very small brush to pat concealer over only the affected area. A little translucent loose powder to set the makeup helps with longevity as makeup doesn’t love to adhere to pimples.”

- Lisa Aharon

 

 

“I use Clé de Peau concealer and with a small brush I cover each spot then I blend it with powder puff. Avoid tons of foundation trying to cover the spots otherwise skin will look unnatural and cakey.”

- Paco Blancas

 

 

Which parts of your face should you use bronzer on?

— @gmiller715

“Using a blush brush start by sweeping bronzer along your temples, continue down and across your cheekbones and dust a little along the jawline to your chin. Don’t forget to blend some bronzer down the sides of your neck as well. For a sun kissed touch you can dust bronzer on the centre of the forehead and just at the sides of the nose blending into the cheeks. Begin with light layers of bronzer adding more until you get the look you like.”

- Simone Otis

 

“Bronzer I find can be one of the most overused products on the market. Often times women just look too orange and full of a glittery shine instead of having a healthy glow. Nars Laguna is my favorite powder bronzer because it warms up the face without looking orange. Another product I love to use to add a dewy bronze glow is Giorgio Armani Liquid Summer. Use alone or mix into your own foundation or tinted moisturizer for a more subtle effect. Apply on temples, outer edges of forehead into your hairline, cheekbones and a dab for the nose.”

- Souhi

 

 

“Stick to bronzer on the high points of the face where the sun would naturally hit. The center of the forehead, bridge of the nose, cheekbones and chin. It’s too easy to go overboard and look like an Oompa Loompa. Plus, you start to lose the natural dimensions of the face when your skin is all one color. Do yourself a favor and use a big fluffy brush. Give it a whirl in the product and either tap it off or give it a little dust off in your hand before applying it to the face. You can build your applications and generally less is more.”

- Lisa Aharon

 

 

“I use a soft powder or blush brush and start dusting some bronzer on apple of the cheeks blending it upwards then the temples, a touch on the forehead, nose and chin and don't forget your neck. Avoid applying bronzer in a uniform way, you want to create dimension on your face. You can also apply some bronzer on your shoulders if they show and your collar bones.”

- Paco Blancas

 

After a full workday, how can you refresh your makeup (foundation specifically) without it becoming cakey?

— @ahlyonss

“A really easy and effective way to refresh your makeup is to spray on a mineral water spray. Spritz on a light layer of water, wait for 30 seconds to a minute for it to absorb then gently dab any excess off with a tissue. Then you can easily touch up your makeup without the cakey buildup.”

- Simone Otis

 

“My favorite way to refresh makeup is by misting the face with a refreshing spray. Some of my favorites are Claudalie Beauty Elixir, Sisley Floral Face Mist, or even an Evian Mist spray works beautifully. I then take a wet sponge and tap onto the face blending out areas that will need reapplication.”

- Souhi

 

 

“You need to remoisten your makeup before adding any more on top of it, especially if you’ve used a powder or powder foundation. I like to do this with a facial spray and there are many to choose from. If you want to splurge, I do love Caudalie Beauty Elixir. Its got a beautiful smelling blend of essential oils in it to help soothe your skin and your mind! Mario Badescu makes one with aloe, herbs and rosewater that’s genius as well. In a pinch you could grab some Avène Thermal Water in a can from the drugstore and it will get you through.”

- Lisa Aharon

 

 

“I love spraying Diamond Mist by Natura Bissé, this makes the makeup dewy and fresh and it smells delicious. Then press gently with hands to let the skin absorb the moisture.”

- Paco Blancas

 

How do I layer sunscreen, moisturizer, primer, foundation, powder and blush and not feel like there is too much on my face?

— @pinkkerrylea

“There’s a couple ways to go here. An easy way to eliminate a few layers is to look for products that do double duty, moisturizer with sunscreen, primer with sunscreen or foundation with sunscreen. If you’d rather stick to the separate products, the best way to apply is to wait in between each application for the product to be absorbed into the skin.”

- Simone Otis

 

“I believe less is more, the more you have on, the more it looks like you have on. I'm always encouraging clients to expose their own skin instead of covering it up with a veil of makeup. It's also not very healthy for your skin to wear tons of product. Moisturizer is always important but skip the primer especially if you don't really need it. There are now products on the market such as CC creams that have an SPF which give you light coverage and protection from elements. I am currently a fan of Kate Sommerville's CC cream, it's just gorgeous. Try a cream blush instead of using a powder blush, my favorites are Stila Convertible Color, RMS and Becca Beach Tint. And also try translucent powder to help with shine as opposed to a colored powder. My philosophy is enhance not cover.”

- Souhi

 

 

“Thin layers of each product are key but you can buy products that are a combination of some of these things. Many moisturizers and foundations already include an SPF factor of 15 or higher which is just fine for the spring, fall and winter. If you’re set on using each of these products individually, just keep it light and give yourself a few minutes between applications for the product to absorb into the skin.”

- Lisa Aharon

 

 

“Start with moisturizer then sunscreen then foundation, blush and powder in that order. Do thin layers in order to get a natural look. You can always use your fingertips to blend and press the products into the skin.”

- Paco Blancas

 

What's the best way to avoid that cover up line that shows up in the crease of your eyelids?

— @wholehearted_kuwait

“For some people there really isn’t a trick here, it will depend on the shape of your eyelid. If you have deep set eyes or eyelids that have deep creases, the best way to avoid product settling in and accenting this is to remember to check and re-blend your eye makeup throughout the day. You can experiment with using concealer under your eyeshadow or eyeshadow primer, and always apply eyeshadow using a brush to control of the amount you are using and avoid cream eyeshadows.”

- Simone Otis

 

“Eye primer was created to help hold product in place and help with unwanted creasing in eyes. Try Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion. It's light and dries invisible.”

- Souhi

 

 

“You can use an eyelid primer or dust a little powder over the lids before applying your makeup. Some makeup brands crease much more easily than others so it can be a case by case situation. Also, unless you’re putting on a smoky eye, you can keep your makeup below the crease and blend it out with a little translucent powder on your brush.”

- Lisa Aharon

 

 

“After finishing the eye makeup I use a very thin Q-tip, I love the ones from Muji, and then take the excess off the crease. Eyeshadow and eyeliners will travel on the eyelids skin into the crease throughout the day no matter what.”

- Paco Blancas

 

How to apply eye liner so that it doesn't fade mid-day? I've tried pencil, liquid, gel, and also apply eye shadow powder to the line but all to no avail.

— @sunkistsunkissed

“For long lasting eyeliner go for layers. My go to duo is liquid or gel eyeliner with a layer of powder eyeshadow overtop. If I really need the liner to stay put I apply a line of liquid eyeliner then, using a small pointy liner brush, I apply a layer of eyeshadow in the same colour overtop to set the first layer.”

- Simone Otis

 

“Make sure that your lids aren’t greasy before you apply the product. You can pat a little powder over them and that will help. I find gel formulations by Bobbi Brown, Benefit, MAC, and Laura Mercier to last the longest.”

- Lisa Aharon

 

 

Nars Eyeliner Stylo works very well and stays for a long time.”

- Paco Blancas

 

What are your favorite makeup brands to use on clients and personally?

 @soophiao

“There are so many great products out there! Some of my personal favorites that are in heavy rotation in my kit are Shiseido Shimmering Cream Eyeshadows, Makeup Brushes and Translucent Powder, RMS Un-Coverup and Buriti Bronzer, BiteBeauty Agave Lip Mask and Matte Cream Lip Crayons, and Nars Eyeshadows and Blushes.”

- Simone Otis

 

“All products were not created equal nor do they work equally on all women. I carry an arsenal of products to use for clients and on models for shoots. I like to find the right product for the right person depending on their skin's need and desired effect. Ultimately skin should always look effortless and light instead of made-up. If the skin looks great, you can always add a dramatic smokey eye, eyelashes, bold lip and or strong brows for dramatic effect. Some of my favorites for skin are Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage, YSL Touche Eclat pen, Giorgio Armani concealers, correctors and foundation , and Makeup Forever classic Face & Body. Skincare has been an ongoing trial and error for me. Recently I've been using Kate Somerville and am in love with her Age Arrest Cream. I also stand behind SK-II Facial Treatment Essence which doesn't have the best smell but it does work. Also in my kit you will find, Nars eyeshadows and blushes I own just about every color. It's pigmented and has the best consistency for blending. Dior Diorshow Iconic Mascara for best separation of lashes. For lips I use NARS lip Pencils, my friend Troi Ollivierre just created highly pigmented matte reds , Tom Ford & Charlotte Tilbury has a gorgeous range of colors including neutrals and nudes and CHANEL for shimmers and sheer moisturizing lipstick. As for my own bag, I'll never be without my black eyeliner. I've been using Maybeline Waterproof Ultra Liner ever since I started wearing makeup as a teenager.”

- Souhi

 

 

“I’ve got a lot of Tom Ford, Chantecaille, CHANEL and Laura Mercier in my kit and in my bathroom. That’s not to say that there aren’t can’t live without items from other brands in my kit. The Nars lip pencils are pretty stellar.” 

- Lisa Aharon 

 

 

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