From her favourite budget concealer to what she'd fill her Boots basket with, here's how top makeup artist Caroline Barnes spends on beauty
As makeup artists go, Caroline Barnes has to be one of the most relatable; her star-studded client list may include the likes of Anna Friel, Rebecca Ferguson and Kylie to name but a handful, but with a combined social media following of over 60k she’s become a go-to guru for easy makeup application tips and a no-nonsense approach to the products that really work.
The Max Factor UK ambassador's #SpeedBeauty videos give quick, foolproof tutorials on everything from how to stop your lipstick smudging to where to place blusher for your face shape, bringing all of her backstage beauty experience right into the pocket of makeup novices. But with so many products at her disposal and over 20 years as a professional makeup artist under her belt, which makeup and skincare buys make it into her own shopping baskets?
We asked how and where she stocks up - read on for everything from her must-have nail top coat to the products she always gifts to friends…
Where do you prefer to shop for beauty (on or offline) and why?
Both actually. I buy online the products I know work. I rarely buy products I haven’t used as I like to feel the texture and have a play before I buy.
What’s your most recent skincare purchase?
La Roche-Posay Anthelios Invisible Face Mist SPF50 , £14. It’s so good, and it’s totally transparent so I can use over makeup. I’m now using retinol on my skin daily so I need a good SPF. I can top up throughout the day without removing my makeup.
Which products do you gift to friends?
Always skincare. I’m so surprised at their lack of knowledge, or maybe most are overwhelmed on which products to buy, but it always brings a squeal of excitement when a new bottle is opened. I usually buy them Medik8 or De Mamiel . Both brands I adore - high performing and exceptional quality.
You have £500 to spend at a makeup counter. Which one do you choose and why?
Wow, that sounds loads but I bet it won’t stretch that far. Let's think now…
OK to totally spoil myself I would visit the Tom Ford counter. A gift this size means I can be totally indulgent. I would buy Eau de Soleil Blanc fragrance , £115, Soleil Blanc Shimmering Body Oil , £72, Illuminating Primer , £57, Cherry Lush Lipstick , £40, as it’s my sister’s favourite and she lost it recently.
Then possibly if I haven’t already blown the budget a stunning eye palette. My all time fave being Nude Dip , £66.
Have you ever had your makeup done at a makeup counter?
Gosh not for years and years. I helped set up a really cool makeup shop, the first of its kind actually, to have a mix of products under the same roof, it was called POUT. I helped train and devise a plan for the makeup artists and I guess that was the last time.
I get quite fidgety if someone does my makeup as I know how I like it and I don’t have the patience to explain. I guess because it's my job the pleasure of someone beautifying your face goes out the window.
What would be in your Boots or supermarket shopping basket beauty-wise?
Oh this might be a long one!
Tweezerman Tweezers , £21.95, Max Factor Masterpiece Mascara , £9.99, and new Lip Cushions , £8.99, which are super hydrating. Rimmel Liquid Lipsticks , £5.99, and Kate Moss Lipsticks , £5.49, Bourjois Liner Pinceau Eyeliner , £6.99.
Nip and Fab Glycolic Fix Scrub , £9.95, CoLab Dry Shampoo Invisible Fresh , £3.49, Yes To Cucumbers Soothing Face Wipes , £3.99, as they are biodegradable which is very important. I use these at work, not to cleanse my face.
Chanel Coco Mademoiselle perfume , £55, I have worn the fragrance for over 20 years. Real Techniques brushes and Ardell Wispies False lashes , £5.49. Sally Hansen Miracle Gel Top Coat , £9.99, it makes any nail colour last up to three days longer.
What’s your favourite budget beauty buy?
Bourjois Healthy Mix Anti Fatigue Concealer , £8.99, it’s a fantastic concealer.
And the most expensive?
I love It Cosmetics CC+ foundation , £30 at the moment. It lasts, protects, and makes my skin look fab, which is no easy job let me tell you!
Where do you get your hair done?
I get my hair coloured locally in Balham London where I live and my friend Ben Cooke cuts it for me when we are on jobs together. In fact I’m desperate for a cut so let’s hope we get booked together soon.
I really like my Moroccan Oil Ceramic Barrel Brush , £14.65, as it smooths my hair much quicker that a standard brush. I love using Shu Uemura shampoo and conditioner as it really conditions my dry hair but doesn’t leave it heavy at all. They also have the best paddle brushes EVER. If I had the time I could sit and brush my hair for hours it’s so soft and comforting!
Any other treatments you regularly book in for?
I wish for treatments, dream of treatments, but with balancing work and three kids it’s almost impossible and it ends up being another stressful thing to fit in. So I have given up unless of course it’s last minute, but this is very rare.
What’s next on your beauty shopping list?
Well, I would like to try a light therapy mask. Like I said above, I don’t get many clinic treatments and I’m always searching of ways to improve my skin. I will book in soon to have some IPL to remove stubborn pigmentation but in the meantime I might splash out on a Dr. Dennis Gross SpectraLite mask , £168 or something similar, still researching if it’s worth it!