Applying Makeup – Using Proper Lighting

April 4, 2011 by  
Filed under Makeup


How is the lighting where you apply your makeup?  Are you applying your makeup in a bathroom or bedroom with one bright light above your head?  Is that one overhead light casting some pretty bad shadows on your facial features, making it difficult for you to judge how much color to apply to your eyes, lips and cheeks?

Understanding proper lighting and using that lighting while applying your makeup makes a big difference in how your makeup looks.  The better your face is lit, the more even your makeup application will be, helping you to achieve a pretty and natural finish.  Beware if you are applying your makeup in a dimly-lit room – it is easy to overdo your application.

So when possible try to apply your makeup in a well-lit area.  It is very helpful to be by a window for natural light.   Natural daylight is the very best light for checking your makeup blending skills and intensity of the colors you’ve applied. In natural daylight, it is easy to see if you need to add color in some areas or tone down the amount of color in other areas.  You can check your makeup application by looking in a mirror either next to a window or by going outside.  “I have had to prepare many poorly-lit areas for makeup application in my 18+ years as a makeup artist, even removing lamp shades to get better lighting on the face of my subject!  And no matter what the lighting was on-set, when possible I almost always took my subject outside to check his or his makeup in natural daylight,” says Jennifer Kalman, Commercial Makeup Artist and Founder of www.QDazzleProm.comIf your makeup application looks great in natural daylight, it will look great in most other settings, even in fluorescent office lights or soft evening lights.

Once you’ve settled yourself near a good light for applying your makeup, here’s another helpful tip.  For best results during your makeup application, while holding your mirror to apply your makeup be sure to turn your face (and mirror) up toward the light source, whether your light source is a lightbulb or the the natural daylight outside a window.  By doing this, you can achieve an even coverage of light on your face while you apply your makeup so that no shadows will distort the amount of color you apply.  For example when applying blusher, if one side of your face is in a shadow and one side of your face is in the light, you might be tempted to apply more blush on the side in the shadow because there is little light on that side of your face and you’re unable to clearly see the amount of color you have already applied.

Of course, sometimes it is not possible to apply or at least check your makeup in natural daylight.  In these cases, try to find the brightest indoor lighting possible.  Then use the above tip of turning your face and mirror toward the light source so that there are no shadows on your face while you apply your makeup.

When you’re aware of the lighting around you before applying your makeup, you will have the best results with your makeup application.

Commercial Makeup Artist, Jennifer Kalman, has 18+ years of experience applying makeup for thousands of proms, pageants, weddings, personalities, print media, TV and video.  Her professional credentials have included makeup for LeAnn Rimes, Troy Aikman, Dixie Chicks and the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders. Counted among her many commercial makeup clients are Pepsi, American Airlines, Frito-Lay, Dr. Pepper, and Verizon. This expertise contributed to the development of and QDazzle(R) High-Pigment Makeup Colors.  Jennifer desired to provide a resource to coach women how to polish their makeup skills (skills they can use for a lifetime) rather than applying their makeup for them once.  Her website, designed to help pageant contestants of all ages refine their makeup skills so they can be prepared and confident on stage, contains makeup instruction, techniques, and ‘Jennifer’s Makeup Tips Blog’, along with brilliantly-hued High-Pigment Makeup Colors.
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