Shadow Box

A makeup artist shares her secret weapons.

The No. 1 question I get when someone learns I’m a makeup artist is, "What’s in your pro makeup kit?" Then comes the look of awe, as if I hold all the secrets. Hey, curiosity isn’t just limited to a non-artist either; I’m constantly discussing with other makeup artists about products they can’t live without. So what makes a product a winner? It isn’t about just what looks good “in-person” but also what looks fantastic on film.

In reality, my kit doesn’t look glamorous; it’s just a huge suitcase filled with products in big clear plastic zipper “pro” bags, sorted and labeled. (Find zipper bags at thepowdergroup.com.) If only the rest of my life was as organized as my kit! Of course there are those tools that have become so significant that they can be found in many an artist’s kit.

Collyre Bleu Laiter (Blue Eye Drops) – Once only available in France, we thankfully now have a makeup artist supply company who carries them stateside. These blue drops were created to eliminate the yellow in the whites of the eye making them appear brighter for a clean, clear youthful look. Great for any eye color but not contact lenses. (www.alconeco.com)

Elnett Satin Hairspray by L'Oreal – A celebrity friend introduced me to this hairspray years ago – but it was so hard to obtain. Thank you Target! I no longer needed a plane ticket, a passport or to be forced to smuggle cans of this fab hairspray home! Elnett's micro-fine spray keeps hair in place yet disappears with a few strokes of your brush. What makes it different? Super fine mist, so fine it is barely visible to the eye. Once you try it you’ll see what all the fuss is about! (At most Target stores.)

Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler – Most makeup artists claim that a great lash curler should be the No. 1 product no woman should leave the house without using. Shu Uemura's creation has long been hailed by those in the industry as the best curler in existence – though makeup artist BillyB’s Lash Curler is giving Shu Uemura a run for its money! (Shu Uemura Lash Curler at Saks Fifth Avenue; BillyB Lash Curler at Robert Hudson’s Makeup Studio)

NARS Blush in Orgasm – The name is the first thing that's going to grab your attention. This cult favorite is sheer with a peachy-pink hue flecked with a hint of gold sparkle, resulting in a natural, radiant finish on almost any skin tone. (Sephora)

Foundations – When on a set, I need a foundation that looks fabulous, is durable and will rock under the lights. All these have beautiful coverage, Actors constantly ask me about them. I personally use Bare Minerals but on sets I use the stunning Face Atelier (faceatelier.com), Make Up For Ever HD Foundation, (Sephora) and Visiora, a brand exclusive for film, TV and print made by Dior, but only found in a few places in the U.S. (Naimies.com)
Smith's Rosebud Salve – This has been a staple in the makeup artist profession for years, where it has been used as a lipstick base, a lip gloss, a lip moisturizer, a highlighter for your face and shoulders, to tame unruly eyebrows, to soften chapped and/or dry skin, to calm frizzy hair and detergent burns and for even diaper rash. It is great on cuticles too! This is definitely a product you should add to your "Need" list. (At Earthsavers)

Yves Saint Laurent Touche Éclat – This is a creamy concealer in a chic wand that highlights, brightens the complexion and lifts up the face. Apply this magic wand under the eyes, along sides of the nose and around the mouth. Easy to use and a little goes a long way. (Saks Fifth Avenue)

Crème de La Mer – Sea kelp is one of the potent ingredients in the Miracle Broth™ – a formula that was created Dr. Max Huber after a lab accident left him with scars. Today people the world over use this moisturizer to sooth the face and neck. The product smoothes out lines, decreases pore size, eliminates dryness and gives skin a smooth, firm look. It is ideal! (Saks Fifth Avenue)

My makeup kit is truly just one big rolling vanity kit, only supersized! No secrets, no mystery, just a large collection of beauty products owned by a makeup junkie who feels ever fortunate to do what she loves most!

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