5 Selfie Tips From a Makeup Artist

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The makeup artist Luis Casco analyzed some 8,000 selfies — of 26 women of different ethnicities and ages — for his book “#beautiful,” which offers tips for taking your best selfie. Mr. Casco, the lead makeup artist for “Project Runway” and a Mary Kay global beauty ambassador, knows that for a certain type of consumer, one who is constantly taking pictures, what matters to her and her social group is how she looks in a selfie.


“Most makeup companies have products that play with light, offering photo finishes or airbrush effects that claim to make wearers camera-ready,” Courtney Rubin wrote in “Makeup for the Selfie Generation.” “But a handful of brands are beginning to design and tweak their wares to stand up to the specific challenges of phone photography — among them, that a flash can make foundation look white, or that in daylight selfies, cool colors can look warmer.”

Indeed, how makeup looks in smartphone pictures has become the latest test that companies like CoverGirl and Smashbox put their products through before taking them to market.

Here Mr. Casco suggests some things to keep in mind.

1. Dry, flaky lips really show up on selfies, so use an exfoliator like Mary Kay Satin Lips Set (which includes a shea sugar scrub and shea butter balm) before applying any lip product.

2. Mix eyeliner shades to trick the viewer. For example, a touch of purple makes brown eyes look clearer; a hint of gold “makes the eyes twinkle,” Mr. Casco said. He likes to layer Make Up For Ever’s Aqua Liquid Liner in diamond purple over the company’s matte black shade.

3. For the most flattering shot, lift the camera to a 45-degree angle, which helps sharpen the jawline and give the appearance of larger eyes — particularly important if you want to avoid a raccoon effect while wearing dark or smoky eye makeup. Bring the chin down slightly and the camera up.

4. With daylight in front of you, the phone softens skin, but it can come off looking pale. Mr. Casco suggests products that contour the face without looking caked-on in real life. His favorite is Mary Kay CC Cream Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 15, which he says are easy to blend and not obviously pigmented.

5. Nighttime (flash) selfies can be tricky because what looks like a bit of shimmer in real life can look like oily skin on camera. Go easy on any product with glitter. Mr. Casco suggests a translucent powder like Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder, which has cashmere talc that makes the skin feel soft. Have blotting sheets like Shiseido Pureness Oil-Control Blotting Paper on hand to absorb extra oil, especially in the T-zone.

New York Times

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