September 2, 2015 RACHEL HALSEY Natural Makeup

How to Prep Your Skin Like a Makeup Artist

We love hearing from our panel of beauty pros about the latest and greatest beauty tricks. Today, we're lucky enough to hear from makeup pro Rachel Halsey, who sounds off on how to prep your skin for seamless makeup application.

How to Prep Your Skin Like a Makeup Artist
No matter the occasion, we always want our makeup to look clean and flawless. The best way to achieve this is by starting out with a pristine canvas (your skin). Just as you would a painting, make sure to prepare your skin so that the end result is smooth and has staying power. Check out my checklist of steps to take before applying makeup!


A completely clean slate is key for pre-makeup prep. Make sure you use a cleanser that thoroughly cleanses your face and works with your skin type. If possible, try using a Clarisonic Brush. This handy tool is a great investment! If your budget won’t allow it, there are plenty of other effective products on the market for every type of complexion. Try a formula like L’Oréal Paris Ideal Clean All Skin Types Foaming Gel Cleanser, which gently exfoliates, removes makeup and is oil-free. For those with acne-prone complexions, make sure you use a formula with active, acne-fighting ingredients. These targeted cleansers can actually continue to work for your skin throughout the day and night!


Dry, flaky skin and blemishes can often affect your makeup application. Do your part in banishing dryness and imperfections by exfoliating regularly. Again, you need to find a formula for your skin type and specific needs. I recommend more gentle, exfoliating products that won’t irritate or rough-up the skin like Garnier Clean+ Balancing Gel Exfoliator.

Treat & Moisturize

You’re almost there! After cleansing and exfoliating the skin, you should always moisturize. Always. Makeup does not set well on dry, dehydrated skin and the last thing you want is to end up with splotchy, cakey foundation! Try a hydrating formula like Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Moisturizer or, for oily skin, try an oil-control formula like The Body Shop Tea Tree Oil Skin Clearing Lotion.


The final step in makeup prep is (drumroll) … primer! Primer will truly enhance the application of your foundation, as well as its staying power. And, there are so many fabulous formulas out there that work with the specific look you’re going for: matte, illuminating, tinted, etc. If you want a more dewy look, try L’Oréal Paris Magic Lumi Light Infusing Primer. If you want a more matte finish that makes your pores look non-existent, try a primer like Maybelline Baby Skin Pore Eraser.

Need more skincare advice? Check out these skincare tips and tricks!

Photo: thinkstock




    About the Author: Rachel is a Los Angeles-based makeup artist specializing in television, print and red carpet events.