Exclusive Interview: Spencer Barnes (continued)

Mimi ON Sep 30, 2011 AT 1:11 pm

Elizabeth Banks channeling Veronica Lake

Elizabeth Banks channeling Veronica Lake

Continue reading our exclusive interview with celebrity makeup artist, Spencer Barnes, and see what his best makeup tips and tricks are, as well as what he thinks about all the latest red carpet trends…

Elizabeth Banks was recently quoted on the red carpet saying she wanted her look to emulate Veronica Lake. Is the ‘Old Hollywood’ trend on the rise or are you asked for more modern looks more often?

While I don’t expect to see exact period-like replicas trending, there are certainly aspects that will be intimated in both hair & makeup, as well as in fashion.

I regularly see nuances and throwbacks to old Hollywood glamour trending, albeit in a variety of forms. The classic Marilyn Monroe look has been referenced countless times in print, on the runway, in movies, music-videos, and on the red carpet… the hauntingly beautiful faces of women like Veronica Lake, Jean Harlow, Greta Garbo, and now Elizabeth Taylor are unforgettable and are part of the collective memory as the very stardust that makes up what Hollywood glamour is.

Whether it’s a classic red lip, sultry eyes, or waved hair echoing the bleach-blonde pale-fingerwaves of the past, references to these Old Hollywood continue to appear on the red carpet.  While I seriously doubt that pencil-thin, crescent-moon eyebrows tweezed practically to oblivion will likely be en-vogue again, there are elements of classic Hollywood glamour that will never die!

What would be your key product for each look (old Hollywood and modern respectively)?

For modern looks I would focus on products that have shimmer/luminosity, smouldering shadows on the eyes and more of a pale, glossy lip tone.

For an old Hollywood look I would focus on creating a classic red lip, or enhancing the lash-line/eye-line with big lashes and kohl liner.

Marilyn Monroe, Angelina Jolie and Scarlett Johannson rocking the classic red lip

Marilyn Monroe, Angelina Jolie and Scarlett Johannson rocking the classic red lip


Improving makeup staying power is always a hot topic in our office and for our readers. Are there any tips or tricks you’ve picked up to make sure makeup stays put throughout the day/night?

1. Use a primer to help foundation and eye shadows stay on.

2. Avoid products that are not oil free. Excess oils can break down makeup products and reduce their wearability.

3. If you have an oily complexion, try using blotting sheets to remove excess oil or shine that may peak through mid-day in the T-zone before applying more makeup/powder over the top.

4. Try using water resistant or water proof eyeliners that won’t smudge/transfer easily.

5. Long wear lip colours or stains can be helpful if you want to keep your lips in place, or if you don’t have time for touch-ups throughout the day.

6. If it’s hot/humid weather, avoid heavy makeup application.  Instead, use a lightweight makeup or even water-proof concealer, focusing on enhancing key features rather than painting them on.

7. Look for products designed to wear well and stay in place – there is more available today than ever before.

What do you think no makeup lover should go without?

4 key products I would say are a must-have is concealer, mascara, a blush or bronzer, and a hint of lip – even if it’s just a gloss or sheer balm.  You can leave colourful eyeshadows, and a full face of makeup for occasion appropriate events, but it’s always nice to see a fresh face softly defined, awakened with a touch of makeup.

What are your own key products in your kit that you couldn’t work without?

Tweezers, concealer, bronzer, neutral eyeshadows, kohl pencil, cotton buds, mascara, and individual flare lashes.

What are you plans for the future, are you set to do more red carpet events soon?

Right now I am finishing a whirlwind international press tour for Footloose with Julianne Hough.  Award season has started up again as well – beginning with the Emmys.  I look forward to many upcoming red-carpet events around the corner, peaking in January/February.

If you love Olivia Wilde as much as we do here at BATD HQ you can catch her in the seventh series of House (which co-stars Hugh Laurie) which is available now on Blu-ray™ & DVD.

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