Having dusted the cheeks of many top models as well as writing for Wonderland, Vogue, Grazia, and Elle (to name a mere handful), Organa Beauty & Wellbeing catches up with top makeup artist, Liz Pugh. She shares her tips on prepping skin for autumn, highlights her favourite trends for autumn makeup and lifts the lid on how she keeps her skin glowing.
We’re starting to notice the effects of autumn creeping in, so following the summer, what's the best way to keep your post-holiday glow?
Moisture, moisture, moisture! Keeping skin as hydrated as possible is essential. If you aren’t ready to lose the summer glow, there are some great self-tanners out there, I love the serum formulas, or the ones you can add drops to your moisturiser to customise your tan.
So, how do you prep your skin for autumn?
I would recommend using creamier cleansers; you want to move away from anything that will strip the skin. A cheap and efficient way to cleanse the skin is by melting coconut oil into the skin, this works well with a drier complexion. Or there are some great oil cleansers out there. Tata Harper has one that doesn’t dry out the skin. You just wash [it] off with warm water.
Serums are a must. And this is where oils will really help to nourish the skin.
Organa recommends Africology Anti-Oxidant Serum
What's the biggest change you think that happens for skin going into the colder months of the year?
There is less humidity in the air so skin will naturally become drier and often flaky. The skin will have to work harder to hydrate itself, unlike in the summer where the pores are more open, and we produce more sebum that naturally moisturises and hydrates the skin.
It is often worth choosing a slightly heavier moisturizer as we move into the colder months. But never forget the sunscreen! We are often fooled into thinking we don’t need it as there is no sunshine, but the harmful rays are still there.
Organa recommends Hemsley Organic Age Defying Day Cream
As a premier makeup artist, what would you say is the best thing we can do for our skin before applying makeup?
It’s all in the prep. I spend time preparing my models/actresses before I apply any makeup. I always use a face oil and massage using either a Gua Sha or Jade Roller. Then I’ll massage more with my hands as I apply a face cream. It boosts the circulation; works the products into the skin and the Gua Sha is amazing to reduce puffiness. I often pop it into the fridge when I arrive into the studio so it’s really cold on the skin and invigorating.
Organa recommends Naya Everyday Face Oil
You create some stunning and show-stopping looks, what are your favourite makeup trends for AW19/20?
I feel skin is important for next AW19/20. We are moving away from “the mask” of foundation and into more real skin. A trick I often use is to apply the foundation and when I complete the makeup look I warm a little oil on my hands and press it in on top of the cheekbone, to give a healthy glow to the skin. It catches the light at the highest point of the cheekbone and brings the face to life without looking like makeup. This is a great trick for the winter months when the light is much flatter so we need to add a little more glow. And a natural look.
The flat light in the autumn/winter months lends itself to more colour on the face. The easiest way to achieve this is with a berry or a bright lip. On shoots I am using a lot of colour but pushing them into the lips with my finger so you get this gorgeous blurry tone of colour. Eyeliner is big this season and it can be the biggest feline flick to a touch of a kohl in the waterline. Anything goes.
Organa recommends SARYA Divaish Lipstick
What are your must-haves in your makeup bag?
In my kitbag I have so much makeup and skincare, I have products I have used for years, my faithfuls, and new products I am testing, it gets heavier and heavier and my back doctor bills are huge!
In my personal makeup bag eyelash curlers and mascara are a must. I am rarely seen without mascara! I absolutely love Westman Atelier as a brand, I can’t fault it. I use her stick foundation as a concealer as I don’t wear foundation. Her baby cheeks are the best blushers I have used. They are in my kit and I have DouDou in my personal bag, I use it on cheeks and lips, so creamy and gorgeous. I have recently been testing Cle De Peu foundation as it is finally in the UK and it is beautiful. Worth the investment as your skin looks so refreshed but it is seamless, so it doesn’t look like you are wearing any foundation, just better skin.
If you could only use one cosmetic item for the rest of your life what would it be and why?
That is a difficult one! For skin it would be oil, and for makeup I can’t decide between mascara or my Westman Atelier Dou Dou Baby Cheeks as I can use it on eyes for a bit of colour, cheeks and lips.
What's your personal skincare routine?
I use a foaming cleanser morning and night, I love Dr Prager Urban Protect Foaming Cleanser. I massage into my skin, let it work its magic whilst I clean my teeth, then I wash it off with a cloth. I also use oil. My personal favourite is Dr Prager Urban Protect Day Oil as it also contains Vitamin C. I have tried many and adore this one; it has tiny gold flakes that really give an amazing glow and acts against the pollutants.
I am never without an SPF 50, [and] at night I use retinol oil by 111 Skin.
How important are the ingredients in the cosmetics you use? Is there a particular quality you look for?
I am looking into more natural and organic products, especially for use on clients. I feel we have far too many chemicals in our lives and it is important what we put on our skin. I love the brand Susanne Kaufman for sustainable organic beauty.
I love hyaluronic acid, it has great moisture qualities, and absorbs into skin so easily.
I also look for non-toxic ingredients with no parabens, sulfates, phylates, synthetic fragrance and mineral oils.
As many of us move towards a more sustainable and eco-friendly way of living, is there anything you're shaking up in your practice to help the environment?
I am so much more aware of my baby wipe consumption as I am always covered in makeup and need to constantly clean my hands. I use only biodegradable now and I wish more companies would take this on board and make them. Although it is so heavy to carry, I prefer products in glass to reduce plastic consumption. I also only use wooden cotton buds now. I absolutely love the Wands for Wildlife programme as they recycle mascara wands for use on animals in their care. So I save mine for that, or I wash old wands out and use for grooming eyebrows.
Finally, how do you feel makeup can empower those who chose to wear it? Or do you think that makeup can change your mood?
Makeup is so empowering. There is nothing I love more when I see someone pushing the boundaries, I am always in awe of a young girl I often see rocking a blue lip as she walks down the road. Makeup can definitely enhance your mood. Just the process can be relaxing and taking some time for yourself, even if it’s a quick 5 minutes its time spent on you.
Sometimes if I’m tired and a little weary I’ll put a red lip on and it lifts my mood and draws attention away from my dark circles! It instantly lifts the face.
I do feel women should never hide behind makeup, and my style of work is more of skin enhancement. I wish more women would be comfortable in their skin. There has been a big trend recently of such heavy masked makeup, contour etc., and it saddens me. Reshaping beautiful faces with contour and covering all imperfections with a mask isn’t necessary. Instead we could embrace them! We have to learn to love the skin we were born with, and make the best of what we have.
By Hannah Shakir-Ramos