Camera Ready Makeup Tips by Kathy Aragon

Besides meeting Liz Yu from Yaby Cosmetics at The Artist Summit, I also attended a seminar by makeup artist Kathy Aragon on how to nail that flawless camera-ready skin she is most famous for.

* Moisturize. Kathy is BIG on moisturizing. She starts out by misting Evian Spray Brumisateur Natural Mineral Water before massaging my favorite Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentrè onto the skin. On extra dry skin (especially those nasty flakes around the nose), she likes Make Up For Ever HD Elixir. Priming is not necessary and only done when the client has oily skin.

* Kathy loves silicone-based foundation for the perfect dewy look. To get the right match, make sure you match your foundation on both your neck and chest area. Make Up For Ever HD Invisible Coverage Foundation and FACE atelier Ultra Foundation PRO are Kathy’s favorites.

* Highlight. This is a must in Kathy’s routine. She loves a fine shimmer powder (Senna Cosmetics Eye & Face Highlighting Color in Lace) along the bridge of the nose, on the cupid’s bow and on top of the cheekbone blended onto the browbone. She also strongly recommends mixing a shimmery product like Benefit High Beam or NARS Copacabana into your regular concealer to diffuse the darkness under the eyes. Yves Saint Laurent Touche Eclat is her top choice for mature skin.

* Just like MAC Senior Makeup Artist Victor C, Kathy is not big on concealer. She only uses her staple, Eve Pearl Concealer Trio, sparingly under the eyes. And contrary to popular belief, she matches the concealer to the circles completely, i.e. no going a shade or two lighter. For serious circles on darker skin tones, Kathy suggests using a blush with orange undertones.

* Glow with a cream blush. Kathy definitely prefers cream over powder. She applies the cream blush just on the apples, blending upwards and finishes by blending just a bit of foundation over it for the perfect inner glow. Her favorite cream blushes are Stila Convertible Color and Make Up For Ever Flash Colour.

Want more tips on photography? Check out these Makeup Tips For Passport/Yearbook Pictures and learn How To: Take Good Close-Up Makeup Pictures.

Phyllis Li is the Founder and Editor-in-chief of Makeup For Life, one of the top 50 beauty blogs that focuses on celebrity makeup breakdowns, product reviews, makeup tutorials and all things beauty. Having lived and traveled in North America, Europe and Asia, she was exposed to different techniques and products at an early age and hopes to put a global perspective towards beauty. Phyllis won the Best Content Award by Total Beauty in 2008 and has been featured in various publications and websites including ELLE,, Yahoo Shine!, AOL Stylelist, Nylon Korea, VOGUE China, Ming Pao Daily (Canada) and Shanghai Weekly. In 2010, she was appointed one of the nine Real Women Ambassadors in the United States to take part in the Latisse® Wishes Challenge, working with Hollywood celebrity Kathy Ireland and raised over $400,000 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation to grant wishes for approximately 54 children. In 2012, she teamed up with luxury skincare brand TATCHA and released a limited-edition 3-Piece Set of her favorite beauty products. Phyllis currently lives in Chicago, US. She is a regular contributor to Shanghai Daily's StyleHai Magazine and a member of the Glam Beauty Network.


  1. I have always been a concealer girl as it completely hides my dark circles and pimples, but it is nice to learn some alternatives. I am guessing by using orange blush, it can brighten up the area?

  2. Anna, what I meant is not to go lighter on the concealer but to match it to the undertones of your circle completely. In most cases, this means using a concealer darker than your skin tone.

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