Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Event and Stage Makeup

If you are participating in a stage show at an event, you would most likely be using a different kind of makeup than you use for daily wear; this makeup is theatrical or stage makeup. Most likely, there will be a professionally trained makeup person to apply this for you. This makeup is a different type of formula and is applied in a different way that allows your face and expressions to be seen from a distance and in bright stage lights. As you can imagine, it is a bit of a daunting task to apply a makeup that may seem very dark and over done in the dressing room, but yet could look totally washed out under your spotlight.

Like regular makeup, the foundation goes on first. This is a very thick, heavy formula that can be in the form of liquid, stick or pan. The color should be darker than your skin tone. Darker is always better. Start the foundation at the forehead and blend up to the hairline. Then cover the rest of the face, including ears, eyelids and neck. The neck is necessary so it doesn’t look like you are wearing a mask. For men, the entire neck is sometimes done, too, but this can get messy. After the basic foundation, a lighter color goes over the natural shadows under the nose and on the chin.

The blush is next. Choose a rosy color (paler for men) and streak it over the cheekbone. Blend down and up, about halfway down the cheek. On men, it should look naturally rosy, while on women it should be dark enough that it will be seen on the stage as actual makeup. Also, blend over the nose and forehead. This needs to be applied heavy and dark because this must show up as real blush under stage lighting.

The eye makeup is probably the most difficult application of all. First, a very white "highlighter" is used along the brow bone and under the eye. This should be well blended so there are no white streaks, but the area should appear lighted.

Next, a color that’s a little darker than skin tone is brushed over the eye, just above the eyelid and below the brow bone; this is also blended beneath the eye. Over this, an even darker color is put along the top of the eyelid and is blended downwards. For women, a darker rosier color that looks more like normal eye shadow is used. Put this on as one might for everyday makeup, but make it look more obvious. Blend the color a little above the eyebrow so that it’s visible. If men need this, and they often do not, choose a less rosy color. After color is on, line the eyes with dark brown or a similar color. Black should never be used unless the character is very dramatic and needs wild makeup. Mascara is put on the top lashes to finish the eyes.

The lipstick is usually applied last. Men should use a color which is only a little bit darker than their usual lip color, and the lip liner should match. Liner and lipstick can be put on in any order. Make sure that the liner goes on the outside of the lips, and not outside the natural line. Lipstick should fill in the lips completely and be dark enough to be seen from the stage. Up close, it will look like Halloween, but under the bright lights it will seem "normal." The ideal for men is not look like they have makeup on at all, unless they are playing a specific character with a face that would be greatly altered.

Lastly, loose powder is dusted over the face. The purpose of this powder is to set the makeup in place and make it less likely to run when the actor sweats on stage.

You will now be ready for your big debut. Your makeup looks great, and so on with the show!

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