When it comes to looking flawless in front of the camera, there’s no one better than Dua Lipa herself. The New Zealand-born singer is known for her stunning outfits and perfectly styled hair but when it came time to film that video above we were blown away by how effortlessly she looks without any touch ups or heavy foundation — just beautiful skin and an array of bold lipsticks.
We spoke with make up artist Michelle Chiang about what products she used and here are some tips from our expert on how to recreate Dua’s smoky eye look using nothing more than your own cosmetics.
1. Put on your base
If you’ve got oily skin then start off with a moisturizer as this will help prevent shine throughout the day. If you have dryer skin try priming before applying your foundation so that it goes on smoothly. For all skin types, put a thin layer over your entire face, including under the eyes. This helps lock moisture into your skin while giving everything a smooth finish. Apply two coats of your favorite liquid foundation across your forehead, chin, cheeks, nose, jaw line, and neck areas. Wait until both layers fully absorb to apply concealer underneath the eye area because doing so can increase caking around the lashes. Use a brush to blend out edges where needed. You should use a powder blush if you have normal/oily skin type, otherwise skip it altogether since it’ll end up cakey during the day. Also avoid powders near your T zone (i.e., lower cheek bones) so they won’t accentuate them.
2. Take a look at your eyes
The key to pulling off smokey eyes is having great contrast between different colors. To achieve this effect, first create a neutral palette by blending together three shades of brown eyeliner pencil, nude shadow, and black mascara. Then take dark purple cream eye liner along the upper lash line closest to your natural eyebrows and extend it down towards outer corners of the eyes. Next use lighter purple shadow beneath the top lid and blend towards the corner of the eye. Lastly, dip your finger tip in white paint and swipe upwards towards inner corners of the eyes to add definition. To intensify this color even further, hold onto the darker purple color and sweep it upwards inside each corner of the eyes. Now take your lightest pink shade and lightly dab it along the bottom lash line. Finally, curl your natural lashes upward slightly to frame your eyes and give them dimension.
For those who don’t want to be limited by only four colors, try mixing several shades of blue and green tones together. A mix of soft greens such as sage, olive, emerald, sea grass, and moss paired with bright blues like sapphire, azure, cobalt, royal navy, periwinkle, and sky would work best. Another alternative is to pair softer pinks and purples instead of reds. Try pairing deep reds like bloodberry with lavenders like zigzag, honeysuckle, mauve, tangerine, seafoam, coral, mistletoe, rosebud, peony, rhododendron, and violet. Or pair cool blues with yellowish hues like lemon chiffon, lemongrass, mimosa, paprika, grapefruit, banana blossom, jasmine, mandarin orange, mango, cantaloupe, and watermelon.
3. Get the lips right
To get the most realistic results, stick to brands that offer high quality pressed pigments and loose formulas. “Pressed pigments generally provide richer textures and saturated finishes,” says makeup artist Michelle Chiang. She recommends MAC Studio Fix Pro Liquid Pencil ($28), which creates a richly colored hue with velvety texture. It has been described as luminous, sexy, sultry, mysterious, seductive, and moody depending on the tone you select. Alternatively, Urban Decay 24 Hour Wear Eyeliner Pencil ($19) provides a subtle yet intense matte black line suitable for lining the upper and lower lids. Its creamy consistency makes application easy, and its precision angled nib ensures precise placement every single time. In addition to being waterproof, UD also offers multiple shades of their liners ranging from black through copper, silver, gold, and bronze. They come in 4 sizes, small, medium, large, and extra large.
As far as choosing lipstick goes, opt for deeper toned ones since they tend to play well against your overall coloring. Look for names like NARS Velvet Matte Red, NYX Super Shock Me, Wet n Wild Black Cherry, Revlon ColorStay Naturally Fresh Pink, Smashbox Photo Finish Oil Free Foundation Stick ($23), Mac Persistence Of Vision Blender Brush Set #21 ($13). These brands typically include highly concentrated pigment in order to ensure maximum saturation. Once applied, these formulas stay true to their name, meaning they last longer than other options.
Achieving a dewy look isn’t always about layering loads of product either. Sometimes less really is more. Using a sheer formula works best because it allows for optimal coverage rather than making your features appear too defined.
4. Finish it and you’re good to go!
Once you’ve achieved your desired look, finish things off with a few tricks to keep your style fresh. First, set your brow bone with a light dusting of translucent powder followed by a spritz of hairspray to tame flyaways. To complete the illusion of clean lines, draw a narrow triangle shape under your eyebrow using a brow gel. Make sure not to fill it completely in since this might cause creasing. When finished, gently pat your browbone with a tissue to remove excess powder.
Next, define your contour by drawing horizontal parallel lines starting from your temples, extending beyond the outer edge of your earlobes and ending at your temple. From there, trace vertical lines from the outer corners of your eyes downwards, stopping halfway between your nose and mouth. Draw another diagonal line from the outer corners of your eyes horizontally back upwards. Blend softly with a sponge to soften hard edges.
Now that your face is set, turn your attention to your lips. Start with a lip primer to prep your lips. Form a perfect heart pattern onto your middle third of your lips with your index fingers and place a dot in the center of the design. Repeat the same thing on the outside corners of your lips to form a symmetrical bow. Smudge the edges inward slightly toward the centre of the hearts to create the appearance of fuller lips. To bring out your smile, take a shimmery peach tone lipstick and run it along the outside edge of your lips. Apply two coats of your favourite lipstick to enhance colour intensity.
Finally, choose a complementary accessory that complements your outfit. Whether it’s jewelry, shoes, bag, or hat, find something that truly speaks to you.