This year's Victoria's Secret show takes place this week, and alongside a performance by Rihanna, the usual gorgeous girls will be strutting their stuff: Miranda Kerr, Candice Swanepoel, and Alessandra Ambrosia and Adriana Lima both back on the catwalk fresh from their second children. But before you say, those pesky perky models, it isn't like they've rolled out of bed looking like that. Miranda posted pictures on Twitter of herself in training for the show back in September. That's two months before she's even on the catwalk. And let's not forget, there's a fleet of professionals on-hand to tease, brush and powder their skin before they take to the runway. In the past few years, the look has been paired down beauty. It's pretty, timeless and understated. Obviously, genetics make looking like an actual Victoria's Secret model pretty darn difficult. But it got me thinking: just how easy is it for an everyday sort of woman to copy the polished makeup look of the Victoria's Secret models? So I enlisted the help of a top makeup artist to teach me.
Above, on the left, that's me. Clearly no Victoria's Secret model. And on the right is the lovely Sara Hill- makeup guru and director of Glasgow-based the Academy of Makeup
. Sara has worked in the industry for 15 years, training via the prestigious London College of Fashion and last year launched her own makeup school. So far, Sara and her team have seen a hundred or so students through the Academy doors. And together with makeup mentor Sara, these students have assisted on over 46 fashion events last year along including the Mobos and the Edinburgh International Fashion Festival
. Sara herself, has been behind the looks of famous folk including none other than Victoria's Secret model Rosie Huntington-Whiteley. So who better than Sara to teach me how to do this look. And talking about the Victoria's Secret look of the past few years, Sara says,
"This is a beautiful look and in fact, it's actually fairly easy to do. It's all about getting the right products. The most important part of this look is the skin, but as whole, this look isn't technically difficult. It's fairly natural and should look like your skin, just better, more dewy and glowing. But there's a fine line between dewy and greasy. And this might not be a great look if you've got very textured skin as this will just emphasise it. However, it's a great look to copy, it's effortless and chic and if you practice you could get this down to 15 mins."
Start off with clean skin because this look is all about polish perfection and for this Sara uses Bioderma Cleanser - a top tip of all makeup artists - then prep the skin with moisturiser and eye cream. Then it's onto the products. Sara begins with the Satin Primer by Illamasqua, the perfect start to getting that Victoria's Secret glow. Then, as a base, Sara uses the best-selling Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturiser, this one is the Illuminating one in the natural shade, again, to add more glow. And she applies it with her fingers rather than a brush to avoid any brush stroke marks. Next it's time to hide any dark circles. And for this, Sara uses the Inglot
under eye palette. For spots, Sara recommends the Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage
and use a small brush to apply. Then Sara uses a Bellapierre makeup base
to even out skin tone on my eyelids, before setting my makeup with Ben Nye powder
. Sara says,
"Some people think they shouldn't use powder, particularly when it's a dewy look they're after. They think powder is going to be cakey and dry. It isn't and in fact, powder is an essential part of your makeup. It will make it stay in place and last longer. It's particularly important under the eyes to use too because it prevents products creasing. And with the primer and tinted moisturiser being so illuminating, you won't lose that glow. So I would encourage people to include powder."
Next, brows, an important part to this look. Avoid the Scouse brow look at all costs and Sara recommends doing this by easing up on the penciling. Her advice? Don't draw your brows end to end, you don't need to draw in a set of brows. And always draw in the direction of hair growth. For mine, Sara uses a Rimmel eye brow pencil in Hazel, then combs through. Over the past few years, the eye makeup has been fairly subtle on the Victoria's Secret models. So Sara shows me how to create the illusion of fuller lashes with Illamasqua's Eye Brow Cake
in Gaze. Using a small brush, apply through the top and bottom lashes to fill in any gaps. Then for a simple flick, from the outer corner of your eye, follow the shape of your bottom eyelid and pull up and out. Again, using a small brush like a lip pencil.
Apply MAC eyeshadow in Vanilla
all over the eye, then follow this with MAC eyeshadow in Sable
. Curl the lashes then apply mascara and Sara has tipped me off about Kiko mascaras
- she swears by them. You can opt for false eye lashes too if you prefer and the WE ARE FAUX Josie set could be perfect for this look. On the cheeks, Sara dabs L'Oreal's blusher in Rose, telling me to smile then dab lightly onto the apples of my cheeks.
Then it's time to get my pout on and for this Sara mixes together two lipglosses: Bellapierre in Champagne and Kiko in Violet glitter. The combination of the beige with the violet boosts the illusion of a pout. Sara recommends not using a lip liner to make the look more pouty and give a softer feathery edge. And finally, contouring. Seems like the world has gone crazy for contouring and Sara's advice is just do a little. Taking a fan brush, find your cheekbone, and lightly under it, just beside your ear, dab then sweep down.
And there you have it. So if you fancy copying this look - and why not - then follow the step-by-step guide below!
The Victoria's Secret makeup look kit
Step by step guide along with products used:
1. Satin primer by Illamasqua.
2. Laura Mercier Illuminating Tinted Moisturiser, in colour natural and apply with fingers rather than brush to avoid streaking.
3. Ingot under eye palette because this is moisturising and not drying in this area.
4. Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage in shade no 3 to hide any blemishes apply with small brush like a lip brush.
5. Bellapierre makeup base - apply onto eyelids to brighten and even out skin tone.
6. Ben Nye powder - apply this all over face to set then under the eyes using eye shadow brush - vital to make makeup last longer and under eyes to avoid creases.
7. Eye brow pencil Rimmel in hazel, and then brush through.
8. Cake eye liner Illamasqua - apply under eye and through the top lashes to create the illusion of fuller lashes.
9. To do the eye flick follow the line of the bottom of your eye and pull up the way and use a small brush again, like a lip brush.
10. Apply MAC vanilla matte all over eye lid
11. Apply MAC sable brown all over eye lid
12. Curl eye lashes.
13. Apply mascara - Sara used Kiko and you can also use false lashes too if you like.
14. L'Oreal blusher in Rose - smile and dab with blusher brush onto apples of cheeks.
15. Lips - mixture of two glosses Bellapierre in Champagne and Kiko in Violet glitter.
16. To contour, find your cheekbone and underneath, using a fan brush, dab and sweep. Only a small amount is need and MAC sculpting powder in taupe
To find out more about Sara Hill's Academy of Makeup
, head to the website. And the Victoria's Secret 2012 Fashion Show will air on Dec. 4 at 10 pm EST/PT on CBS.