Ever wondered what it takes to make the world’s most famous faces look flawless every time? Professionals in the know. Ask most celebs and nowadays, they’ll be the first to admit they didn’t actually “wake up like this”. Nope, instead, it takes a bit of elbow grease and years of insider knowledge to finesse red-carpet worthy skin.
We chat to South American make-up artist Valeria Ferreira, who's responsible for the sultry smoky eyes of Naomi Scott, Victoria Beckham and Jenna-Louise Coleman. Here we talk through the secret to disguising last-minute spots and how to achieve flawless-looking skin.
Which products do you love using on your clients at the moment?
“I am super into a Cover FX highlighter at the moment as it gives me the best glow ever! I also love the Armani liquid concealers (they have an amazing finish) and the new bronzer by La Mer – so delicate!”
You're not afraid to experiment with fun and playful looks, how do you incorporate color and graphic shapes in a way that still looks wearable?
“It is all about the individual, so I start by connecting with my client’s personality and getting inspired by her nature and natural beauty. Of course, bouncing off ideas with the fashion stylist and hair stylist is key to the final makeup look, as it’s always a team effort. Then the idea of the look will be in my mind – like a vision. I always make sure that the look is relatable and relevant to our times. Desirable, modern, not too complicated. I like when things are unpredictable. Having a good reference is key to creating any strong makeup look. Researching and getting inspiration from different sources. The rest is just having fun, letting go, being bold and never scared to play with shapes and colour!”
If readers wanted to be a little more experimental, where’s the best place to start?
“I think it is easy to play with eyeshadows and lipsticks to start with, nothing too technical. Watching tutorials really helps too! I wish there were tutorials when I was just starting!! Try blending a shadow with a soft fluffy eyeshadow brush until it disappears into the skin. Play with colours and textures. Just eyeshadow and mascara. This way you will discover what suits you best and it’s a great creative exercise. I used to do this on me everyday when I started doing makeup until I wasn’t scared of colour anymore! Same with lipsticks. Just experiment with different tones and textures. Try using them as blushers too!”
What make-up trends do you think are taking off at the moment and which are you most excited by?
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What are your best insider beauty tips?
“Beauty comes from within. I know it sounds ‘cliché’ but if you feel great you will look great, so look after the inside as much as you look after the outside. On a more technical level, get facials regularly and use good skincare – a routine that it is right for your skin type. Use breathable textures when it comes to foundation and concealer (products that are light but can be built if necessary) and curl your lashes and wear mascara! It is my go-to thing!”
Which three products do you always have in your kit?
“Shiseido lash curlers, YSL Faux Cils Waterproof Mascara and La Mer Cushion foundation.”
What's the secret to ultra-fresh looking skin?
“1. Prepping your skin properly. 2. Choosing your skin care textures right. 3. Not overdoing it with foundation and concealer. I call it “strategic” application. Look at your skin and discover those small areas that need coverage. Camouflaging is the key to fresh and natural looking skin. You should always aim to have some of your natural skin coming through with no product at all, this way no one will be able to detect if you’re wearing makeup or not and your skin will look perfect!”
You're about to get a client ready for the red carpet, they've been out the night before, their skin is dull and they've got a blemish brewing – what do you do?
“Sheet masks are amazing for these kind of emergencies. I swear by them. I will definitely use one of these and also a separate set specially for the under eye. I will also give my client a good face massage – if there is time – helping drain the lymphatic system. With regards to the spot, there is a magic product I use on spots by Malin and Goetz [the 10% Sulfur Paste]. You put a tiny bit on the spot, leave it on for ten minutes and it will bring impurities to the top quite quickly. Never squeeze. Wipe the product off with something antiseptic and the spot might be gone. If it hasn’t, I will choose the right concealer shade to neutralise the spot. A dryer and thicker texture concealer is best if the spot is still there.”
Have you had any work-related disasters?
“My worst work related disaster was when my kit got lost. I arrived in Dublin and my makeup case never got there! I waited by the luggage belt but it never arrived. I was there to do Lykke Li’s make up for a show. Luckily, Lykke is a good friend and has a great makeup bag with a good selection of products, so we used her own makeup bag. My kit arrived the next day but it was such an awful feeling. I thought I would never see it again!”
What's been the best moment of your career so far?
“There isn’t one to be honest. I feel my career has given me countless memorable moments and incredible opportunities. There is magic all the way!”