Earlier this week I was sitting in what I like to call “Beauty School,” a MAC Pro Master Class lead by world famous makeup artist, James Kaliardos, (he’s done Vogue, Allure and V magazine covers as well as every celeb imaginable from Gaga and Madonna to Lenny Kravitz). I sat taking note of all of his application tips and tricks, but my eyes lit up when he began explaining how to use makeup to mimic Oprah lighting. Oprah lighting!
Now, let me explain. When I’m on a shoot or doing a TV segment I always get excited when I see the producers setting up the diva lights. Lighting is everything and Oprah’s studio had the best lighting in the industry. Everyone looks good in Oprah lighting. Yes, even Rosie O’Donnell (almost?).
Kaliardos explained that when working with photographers he couldn’t always rely on lighting because of shoot locations and often had to mimic Oprah lighting with makeup to ensure the models’ or celebrities’ skin would look three dimensionally flawless. His secret? He builds up the face with different tones of concealor and foundation. Here’s how:
1. Starting with a cleansed face, heavily apply moisturizer with a brush to prep your canvas.
2. Using the same brush, use a creamy concealor that’s a shade lighter than your skin tone and sweep it under your eyes (from the inner corners out), around your nostrils, on your chin and on your forehead. Blend it in and out. This helps to sculpt and lift up the planes of your face and add dimension.
3. Use two foundations. One just a half a shade darker and one that matches perfectly. Using the same brush, take the darker one and just hit your temples and underneath your cheekbones. Fill in the rest of your face with the other and blend.