When It Comes To Make-Up, What Do The Experts Really Think?

Lipsticks, and concealers and mascaras, oh my!

The cosmetic industry is most certainly booming, with new products and stylistic approaches tackled every week. Naturally, we can get caught up in this muddle of make-up, unable to sort the heroes from the zeroes. Whether you’re a fanatic or a curious bystander, a few words from the professionals is always helpful. We spoke with the IMAGE Business of Beauty Awards nominees for Best Make-Up Artist, to quiz them on everything, from their favourite lippies to their most cherished make-up memory…

Your number one product of 2017 so far?

Clarins Instant Concealer. I cannot leave the house without this product. It’s the perfect concealer for cancelling out discoloration for all types of dark under eye circles.

Emma Farrell, EF Creative Studios

What is your favourite lipstick of all time?

Well, that’s easy… Lady Danger from MAC of course. Pair it with Prep+Prime Lip and Redd Lip Pencil for a statement with minimal effort.

Colleen Allman, MAC, Brown Thomas, Galway

Mary Katrantzou SS17

Jason Lloyd Evans

Do you have a make-up icon?

For inspiration and adoration, I always look to Pat McGrath and Lan Nguyen. Their passion, creativity, experimentation and limitless approach to designing make-up looks and creating what will become our latest trends is utterly admirable. There are no boundaries and therefore great freedom of expression in everything they do.

Lyndsey Cavanagh, The Hive

Do you have a favourite ‘look’ you enjoy doing for clients? 

I literally love making a client feel and look the best they ever thought they could. I find that for my clients and me, this tends to be the ‘less is more’ approach, so I love focusing on skin analysis and improvement. Creating glow and giving structure to areas they might not have it naturally.

Dearbhla Keenan, Brown Sugar

Do you prefer making someone over for an event, or working on an editorial look?

I love being creative, so if someone comes to me with and open mind and a willingness to be adventurous, that is my favourite type of work.

Emma Farrell, EF Creative Studios

Ooh, that’s a hard question. I absolutely love making someone up for an event. However, an editorial look always comes with its own challenges and stepping out of my comfort zone is always fun!

Colleen Allman, MAC, Brown Thomas, Galway

Sonia Rykiel SS17

Photo: Jason Lloyd Evans

What is the best advice you can give to a makeup novice? Likewise, what is the best tip you can give to a makeup aficionado?

My advice to a makeup novice? Listen.

My advice to a makeup aficionado? Listen.

Listen to your clients, whether they are a large fashion house or a teenager attending her graduation ball from school. When you truly listen, you are far better enabled to give people what they desire and more.

Lyndsey Cavanagh, The Hive


Is there a ‘classic’ makeup look that you love? Whether it be Marlene Dietrich’s 1930’s brow and sharp lip or Edie Sedgwick’s 1970’s dark eye/heavy brow/nude lip combo?

Ah, definitely Edie Sedgwick, through and through. I idolised the 70’s and everything that came out of it.

Colleen Allman, MAC, Brown Thomas, Galway

I’ve always been drawn most to the silent movie era of the 20’s, with the strong, dark, rounded smokey eye, incorporating a deep velvety plum lip. It tends to be my style during the winter months even if it’s ‘against the makeup rules’.

Dearbhla Keenan, Brown Sugar

Matte or vinyl?

Matte is definitely preferential at the moment, but I think vinyl will always win over for me, if I HAD to choose.

Dearbhla Keenan, Brown Sugar

Giorgio Armani SS17

Jason Lloyd Evans

Do you have a major makeup memory? The first lipstick you bought? The first time you did someone’s makeup?

My first makeup memory was prancing around my mum’s bedroom, wearing her fur coat (I am vegetarian and anti-fur now), her high heels and a bright red lipstick, which I managed to mush not only all over my lips, but my face and much of the bedroom. I was about six at the time. I remember feeling very glamorous, and I guess this was the beginning of my makeup obsession.

Emma Farrell, EF Creative Studios

As a child, I do recall being a tad overzealous with my grandmother’s red lipstick collection and it wasn’t pretty. Red lips, teeth and a lot of bleeding. I didn’t know the importance of a lip pencil – evidently! Plus, I remember how it tasted – in those times lipstick had a distinctive smell and taste of wax, which they were largely made from, and it wasn’t very nice! Praise be for the lack of Snap Chat in those days.

Lyndsey Cavanagh, The Hive

Featured image: Carolina Herrera SS17, Jason Lloyd Evans

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