By Liz Olivier
From Frieda Pinto (Left) to Isabel Lucas (Right), one of the most sought after qualities of Tinsel
Town’s leading ladies is their flawless skin. Whether gracing the red carpet or appearing on the big
screen, their complexion always seems to be perfect. As an international makeup artist I have worked
with various clients on movie sets to runways and have always found that there are many women out
there who just want to know how to achieve the basics in applying makeup. I’m here to share a few of
my own personal tips and tricks to achieve a flawless glam look.
The Basics to
A Flawless Glam Look in 5 Easy Steps
Liz Olivier is a South African-born hair and makeup artist based in New York City. Her work has been featured on the cover of GQ Style and inside the glossies of American Vogue,
Harper's Bazaar and Glamour magazines. On location in Bali, Olivier was the key hair and makeup artist for the motion picture 'Eat Pray Love,' starring Julia Roberts.
STEP 1 - Primer
Make sure you moisturize and prime your skin before you apply
your foundation. Primer fills in your pores and creates a smooth
finish, giving your skin the starting point it needs. On top of that, it
will help your makeup stay on longer all day and all night.
After applying your daily moisturizer, add a drop of primer in
circular motions starting from your T-zone and work your way
outwards until the primer is blended perfectly into the skin.
I love primer because your skin is always left feeling beautifully
smooth and silky.
▪ Chanel Base Lumiere ($42, chanel.com)
▪ MAC Prep + Prime Skin Base ($26.50, maccosmetics.com)
-I personally found with these two primers that foundation stays
on longer than usual, leaving you with fewer touch-ups to do
during the day.
STEP 2 - Foundation
The most important part of a flawless complexion is foundation. There are so many brands and shades – it’s easy
to get yourself confused, but a dewy complexion can easily be achieved by using the right foundation for your skin.
Two things you have to ask yourself before buying your foundation:
1) What is my skin type?
Do you have oily, dry, sensitive or combination skin? It is important to remember that your skin might be dryer in
the winter than in the summer and you need to buy your foundations accordingly:
Dry - Use a silicone base foundation | Oily - Use a water base foundation.
Sensitive - Stay away from foundations containing perfumes and plant extracts, it will reduce skin irritations.
Combination - Stick to water base foundations.
2) What coverage do I want?
When buying your foundation, make sure to choose the right foundation coverage for your complexion. There is
light, medium and heavy coverage for all skin tones, so make sure to convey to the counter girl helping you what
coverage you want. If you are not sure ask for her expertise and let her guide you. Don’t be afraid to ask for
foundation samples. The light can be very bad at those cosmetic counters, causing you to choose the wrong color
for your skin. The samples will give you all the time you need to make the right decision. Once you have the right
foundation, apply your foundation starting on your T-zone and work your wary outwards. Make sure to blend your
foundations all the way down the neck, leave no streaks or lines behind.
Tip: Apply your foundation in a downward motion on your face. This will flatten those small little facial hairs, creating
a smooth finish.
Fair to Medium Skin Tones
▪ Chanel Pro Lumiere (silicone base with medium coverage) ($54, chanel.com)
▪ Chanel Vita Lumiere (silicone base with light coverage) ($54, chanel.com)
- As a makeup artist, The Lumiere range I just Love! It really leaves your skin with that natural glow we all want.
▪ Makeup For Ever HD (water base matt coverage) ($40, sephora.com)
-It has a great silky smooth matt finish. I use it on movie sets all the time.
▪ MAC Studio Fix Powder (powder that gives a light coverage) ($26.50, maccosmetics.com)
-For a light matt finish for fair and ethnic skin tones.
Ethnic Skin Tones
▪ Maybelline Dream Smooth Mousse (water base with medium coverage) ($7.99, ulta.com)
-It is a great foundation for light to medium ethnic skin tones. It leaves the skin smooth and absorbs oils, creating a
▪ MAC Studio Tech (Water/wax base for heavy coverage) ($29.50, maccosmetics.com)
-It is great for dark ethnic skin tones. This foundation range also has the red and blue undertones the darker skin
STEP 3 - Conceal
Concealers are tricky; they can easily look caked on.
When buying a concealer I recommend that you always buy a
small concealer palette so that you can blend the exact color you
want. It is very seldom that you find the exact color you want. This
will help you when concealing under your eye since you should
always go two shades lighter than you skin tone. This will
highlight the area creating a beautiful contour for your
Two things you need to know when concealing problem areas:
1) Yellow neutralizes blue
Get rid of dark under eye circles with a yellow
2) Green neutralizes red
For little red veins apply a concealer with a green undertone on
the problem areas followed by your regular concealer that
matches up with your skin.
Always apply concealer with your fingertips using a dabbing
motion. The heat of your fingers melts the oils in the concealer,
blending it better into the skin. The dabbing motion will form
small little layers, creating the full coverage you want.
▪ Shu Uemura Cover Crayon ($25, shuuemura-usa.com)
-What I love is being able to match the concealer perfectly for
each skin tone since each pencil has 2 colors.
STEP 4 - Contour & Highlight
Contouring is key when brining out your features. Some think it is
just for the professionals, but with the right product and guidance
everyone can achieve this. Using a sculpting powder, start from
the hairline just under the cheekbone and start blending towards
the center of your face. To contour the rest of the face blend your
sculpting powder with a blush brush along your jaw line and
Isabel Lucas’ natural glow is amazing. The trick is to highlight
using a bronzer, bringing out your beautiful natural features.
Apply bronzer to your cheeks, chin and nose with a big powder
brush. Remember, a little goes a long way when it comes to
Tip: For an extra highlight you can dab a little MAC Clear Gloss or
Fresh Twilight on the top of your cheekbone, just under the eye.
▪ MAC & Marcel Wanders Sheer Mystery Powder ($60,
▪ Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick Compact - Bronzer
-It comes in different shades for all skin tones.
▪ MAC Clear Gloss ($18, maccosmetics.com)
-This is a multipurpose gloss that won’t leave behind that
stickiness we all hate.
▪ Fresh Twilight Fresh Face Glow ($36, fresh.com)
-When applied it gives your skin the most amazing glow.
STEP 5 - Powder
Too much powder is a major beauty no-no! It will
eliminate your natural glow, so go easy.
I like translucent powders - it doesn’t look heavy on
the skin and it absorbs all the oils. If you don’t like
loose powders use a compact powder with a sheer
finish. It will still leave your skin with a glowing
Using a big powder brush, give your face a light
powder using a downward motion. It will keep your
facial hair flat, avoiding unwanted facial hair to
become obvious. When going over the areas where
you have concealer, use a dabbing motion - it will
prevent the concealer from moving.
▪ MAC Prep + Prime Transparent Finishing Powder
-Transparent finishing powder that is great for all
skin-tones because it has no color.
▪ Makeup Forever HD Microfinish Powder ($30,
-It’s a micro finishing powder that is a great edition
to the Makeup Forever HD Foundations and you
don’t need much to get the effect you want.
▪ MAC Mineralize Skinfinish
-This compact powder has a sheer finish which
makes it great for a coverage that leaves your skin
with a natural glow.