Forgive me for sounding like my grandmother, but back in my day, I actually had to call someone on a landline to talk to them! I remember dialing up crushes in middle school, my clammy hand shaking on the receiver. Now, cell phones offer a direct line to your sweetie, texting has taken over, and web cams let you see your loved ones from anywhere in the world.
Speaking of web cams, has anyone else noticed that they aren’t exactly “flattering”? Red spots I didn’t even know I had seem to appear, my skin always seem to look a dismal shade of yellow, and the lighting is always a little bit “off.” I knew there had to be a way to look cyber-stunning, so I went to the pros for help: Celebrity Makeup Artist Lauren Lazaro and Celebrity Photographers Drew and Derek Riker.
- Full-blown HD makeup isn’t needed, but you do want certain areas of your face to POP! Lazaro says pay close attention to your eyes and lips. A fresh, natural face is the way to go!
- For moisturized skin that doesn’t shine like the top of the Chrysler Building, try a de-slicker like Vichy Normderm Pro Mat Ultra-Mattifying Oil-Free Lotion ($22).
- On your peepers, go for neutral shades of brown, gold, and emerald green. Lazaro recommends Anastasia of Beverly Hills Illumin8 With Youthful Synergy™ Complex Eye Shadow Palette - No. 2 ($40). Then, add some mascara. We like L’Oreal Voluminous Million Lashes.
- Lightly dust skin with your favorite bronzer. We are obsessed with Guerlain Terracotta Light Sheer Bronzing Powder ($50).
- For lips, slick on a gorgeous shade of mauve, coral, or pink beige. Lazaro hearts the hues in FusionBeauty's LipFusion Luxe Boudoir Collection ($29).
- You want to shine on camera, but not literally! Sop up oil in a pinch with blotting papers, like BOSCIA Blotting Linens ($10).
THE PERFECT SHOT:
- It all starts with your computer! The Rikers recommend using a laptop. You’ll have more lighting options because you’re mobile. It's also important to keep the camera on a solid, steady surface. The brothers put it best when they told me, "no one is going to sit through your own little Blair Witch Project.”
- In photography, people rarely look good when you shoot up at them, so resist the temptation to just chat away with your computer on your lap. Instead, keep the camera at eye level, or above. That means you may need to play MacGyver. The Rikers recommend stacking some books to achieve the perfect camera height.
- As any pro will tell you, lighting is key! The Rikers told me, "ALWAYS FACE DIRECTLY TO THE LIGHT. ALWAYS USE SOFT LIGHT. NEVER BACKLIGHT." (Yes, they wrote this tip in caps, so you know that it must be important!) This will reduce, or hopefully get rid of, shadows that make you look like some kind of "sleep-deprived, worst version of yourself."
- One of the best sources of light is ambient, not direct, daylight streaming through a window. Do you log more time online at night? The Rikers suggest using a light with a good lampshade. Make sure that it is centered behind your webcam and is coming from above your head. Preferably, it should be dark behind you for best results.
- Finally, look directly into the camera. Yes, it can be hard not to look down at the screen (hair check, anyone?), but now that you know the tricks the pros use, you don't have to!
Lauren R. Lazaro is a freelance celebrity makeup artist based in New York City. She is shaping faces in the television and fashion industries domestically, as well as globally, and her passion for makeup continues to grow with each face she works with. Lauren currently works as the Makeup Artist for ABC “Who Wants to be a Millionaire” and freelances at “Live with Regis and Kelly”, “Nate Berkus” as well as several other TV shows. Lauren has had the pleasure of working with such faces as Kelly Ripa, Taylor Swift, Ivanka Trump, Regis Philbin, Jon Bon Jovi and many other A list celebrities. She has also been the featured Makeup Artist on “My Fair Wedding with David Tutera” as well as “Platinum Weddings” and has had her own Beauty segments on the WPIX 11 Morning News. Lauren is now branching out and offering her professional services to the bridal world.
Photographers Drew and Derek Riker started their careers in the fashion industry in front of the camera as models in 1994. While living in