Belfast Telegraph

Make-up masterclass: Five tips for achieving red carpet look

Paddy McGurgan is one of NI's best-known beauty experts and each week he tells us all we need to know about the latest make-up techniques and trends

Margot Robbie attends the photocall for
Margot Robbie attends the photocall for "Once Upon A Time In Hollywood" during the 72nd annual Cannes Film Festival on May 22, 2019. (Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)
e.l.f. Makeup Mist and Set (£5.70)
Make Up Studios Face it Light Cream Foundation (£27.50)
Lime Crime Venus XL (£56, Make Up Pro Store)
Laura Mercier Cream Blush
NYX Loose Powder (£9)
BECCA Backlight Priming Filter (£28)

By Paddy McGurgan

I am writing this from the beautiful Cannes. I am so overwhelmed to have been chosen to not only work at a series of photoshoots for the Cannes Film Festival, but to attend the red carpet event - it has been a humbling experience.

I have been overcome with a variety of different red carpet-appropriate make-up looks, so with this in mind, today I am going to discuss how to get a Cannes-inspired look at home.

The most important step comes first - the skin. Anyone who knows me, or has ever had me create their make-up for an event, or followed me on social media, will know my utter obsession with allowing the skin to look like just that - skin!

I tend to use a variety of products to prepare the skin. I do not expect anyone at home do the same, but the same idea applies - ensure your products suit your skin's type, needs and tone.

To prep the skin for a red-carpet look, I use a lightweight hydrating and illuminating primer. This allows the skin to look glowing and nourished, even after applying make-up. One primer I love is the BECCA Backlight Priming Filter (£28).

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BECCA Backlight Priming Filter (£28)

The weightless formula leaves your skin looking airbrushed and naturally luminous, not to mention flawless. It's the secret to a gorgeous glow.

For a foundation that will provide full coverage while still appearing lightweight on the skin, I have to recommend Make Up Studio's Face it Light Cream Foundation (£27.50). This is my 'ride or die' foundation, whether it be for camera work, bridal, editorial or night-time glamour.

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Make Up Studios Face it Light Cream Foundation (£27.50)

My favourite thing about this foundation is the consistency - it is a cream-based foundation, which allows so much versatility with coverage. When I use a large fluffy foundation brush, I am able to buff this onto the skin to create a flawless and airbrushed effect.

Setting powder is a must for the red carpet. I want to make sure the model doesn't look shiny or greasy in front of the camera. For this, I love using the NYX Loose Powder (£9) because it's translucent and does not affect the shade or tone of the foundation I'm using on the client. It will just set everything in place instantly, without looking heavy on the skin.

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NYX Loose Powder (£9)

When you have patted your loose powder onto the skin, go in again with your large powder brush and use the very end of the brush in circular motions, with very little pressure, to buff the powder into the skin. This will make you look airbrushed and gorgeous - and who doesn't want that?

Bring a touch of warmth back to your skin by dotting a warm-toned, shimmery, cream blush onto your cheeks. Use a smaller synthetic powder brush to work the colour onto the apples of your cheeks and blend outward towards your hairline, for a natural flush. I recommend Laura Mercier's Cream Blush in Blaze or Praline (£21.50).

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Laura Mercier Cream Blush
 

I am all for the less is more look and I feel like holding back a little can be just as effective as opting for a full, dramatic smoky eye. I love to create copper and cranberry tones and place them in the crease to lift and brighten the eyes, then I place a darker brown to allow depth and earthiness.

Try Lime Crime Venus XL (£56, Make Up Pro Store), which has a mixture of matte and shimmers to facilitate many different make-up looks.

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Lime Crime Venus XL (£56, Make Up Pro Store)

These earthy brown tones can be adapted for day and night-time looks, depending on the strength of the pigment and the darkness of the colours you use. This product is a must if you love to experiment with make-up.

Stay selfie-ready with e.l.f. Makeup Mist and Set (£5.70). The formula, which contains aloe, green tea, cucumber and vitamins A, C and E, is designed to hydrate, revitalise the skin's colour and hold make-up in place.

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e.l.f. Makeup Mist and Set (£5.70)

Five top tips for achieving a red carpet-ready look 

1. Less is more - the attention should really be on your skin. If you skin is flawless and glowing, you fit the brief.

2. If you have difficulty with your make-up staying on throughout the day and do not want to lose your skin's glow, use a pressed matte powder and apply in areas that shine appears - eg, the chin. This will mattify the areas you want while allowing your glow to shine elsewhere.

3. For your lips, take into account what you are wearing. If you are wearing a bold colour, don't be afraid to reach for that red lip. Avoid darker browns for summertime. Instead, add corals, peaches and light mandarin tones to your nude lipstick collection. This will add a summer-appropriate vibrancy to your look.

4. Building up your make-up products with light layers will make them last longer than applying one heavy layer, and it always looks much more natural. Remember, you can always add, but it is difficult to take away, so use light layers.

5. Setting sprays are specifically designed to prevent make-up meltdown. A quick spritz will save you from needing a touch-up.

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