The best and most useful makeup tips from Bobbi Brown on MasterClass: Foundation, concealer, and eyeshadow hacks
To say that online tutorials changed our lives is hardly an exaggeration. Losing the instruction manual to your Ikea Symfonisk bookshelf is no longer a cause for panic; re-creating Euphoria-style eyeshadow looks a breeze; while step-by-step guides to crafting up a killer cocktail is a mere click of the mouse away. Heck, we'd even go as far to say that tutorials are the lifeblood of beauty influencers's careers, cementing their status as authorities within the sphere.
With all that we know, the emergence of a platform dedicated solely to tutorials — taught by masters of their craft, naturally — comes as no surprise. In fact, it is the entire premise of MasterClass, but with the volume turned way up. Think dynamic lectures conducted by legends in the field, from Christina Aguilera (singing) to Margaret Atwood (creative writing) divulging the tips, tricks, and secrets behind their successes.
Repping the beauty community is none other than luminary, Bobbi Brown, with a series of workshops detailing the fundamentals and technicalities of makeup application. With a runtime of 220 minutes and a price tag of US$90, we understand the apprehension behind hitting the checkout button. For those still hemming and hawing behind the screen, chill out — we've taken the plunge and paid for and watched her master class in its entirety so you don't have to. The best of Bobbi's wisdom, below.
Look at yourself bare-faced to figure out the colours that work for your complexion.
Or, failing that, get a makeup artist to evaluate your naked skin to gauge what sort of hues work for you. Ideally, face products such as foundation, concealer, bronzer, and blush should mimic the natural shade of your skin. For instance, Bobbi recommends giving your cheeks a pinch to observe the colour of your flush, then picking out a blush product that best emulates it.
Opt for multi-purpose applicators and customisable palettes while travelling.
Dual-ended brushes and multi-functional sponges deserve a spot in your carry-on. As for customisable palettes, it is best that you sit down and evaluate your needs before deciding what goes in your pan. Are bronzers and blushes considered essentials? Can your highlight double as eyeshadow? The aim is, naturally, to keep the number of different products you have to tote to a minimum.
Always adapt your foundation to your current skin needs.
Tempting as it might be to stick to a single, trusty formulation, Bobbi prefers having an arsenal of foundation types and textures so as to cater to a wide range of needs. Heading into a cold climate? That's where your dewy, hydrating foundations come out to play. Oil-free formulas are preferable in Singapore's humidity, while lightweight variations won't sink into crepe-like flaky skin.
Swipe on moisturiser — not lip balm — to prep your lips.
You read that right. According to Bobbi, lip balm sits as an extra layer on your lips, but doesn't sink in; moisturiser, on the other hand, does.
Concealer should always be one shade lighter than your foundation.
Note: the chief purpose of concealer is always to brighten, rather than to even out dull, tired complexions. The latter is the job of your foundation. Bobbi points out that you shouldn't use foundation and concealer in the same areas either, as it could lead to extreme caking and creasing. If you're using concealer under your eyes, for instance, be sure to skip out on the foundation in that spot.
If your foundation doesn't settle, drink a glass of water.
According to Bobbi, there are only two reasons as to why foundation isn't easily absorbed into skin: a) it's the wrong shade, or b) your complexion is too dry to allow makeup to adhere to it. Down a glass of water and try again.
Never go for translucent powders.
While they might claim to be clear or invisible to the naked eye, translucent powders are actually known to leave an ashy cast that is particular prominent on those with darker skin tones. Bobbi suggests a powder in a hue closest to your skin tone instead to see optimal effects.
Do not use bronzer to contour.
Think of bronzers as you would a tint — they are meant to enhance a natural, sun-kissed glow rather than to alter the shade of your skin completely. A hint on your cheeks and temples is all you need.
You need to dust your brush off before applying it to skin.
To prevent fall-out or spillage from powdered formulations, dip the brush in, tap, blow it, then apply to skin. No mess guaranteed.
For eyeshadow, remember the rule of threes.
The lightest hue goes all over the lid, and is meant to add luminosity. The middle one, creates depth, and is to be applied from the lash line and ¾ to the middle of lid. Your final one, the darkest hue, should be used sparingly and as a liner.