Modeling Set Etiquette Tips from Wardrobe Stylist & Makeup Artist

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Modeling Set Etiquette How to Preserve Makeup Hair & Wardrobe

 

Creating images for advertising that appear effortless actually takes a lot of work.   The behind the scenes includes: wardrobe prep, a team of makeup & hair, a strong concept, art direction, and great casting.  I work as the beauty expert in the behind the scenes crew.  Makeup artists and fashion stylists work very hard to create the best hair/makeup and display clothing and products in the best light for advertising.  Inadvertently there are things talent can do on set that impede the efforts of makeup artists and fashion stylists and wardrobe.  We understand, modeling isn’t an easy job that comes with tons of training before you book your first shoot.

Atlanta based Emily Sistrunk is a fashion & product stylist as well as a long time colleague and friend.  Emily and I have worked with a range of models and talent from seasoned pros to models on their very first booking. We wanted to share some advice from a stylist and makeup artist’s perspective on model setiquette.  These are attributes we love to see on set.   We really appreciate when these professional courtesies are observed as it keeps the shoot on schedule, and shows us you are a true pro.

 

Maintain your position when we step in – When makeup goes into fix hair that’s out of place or touch up makeup, it helps to see what the issue is.  If you turn out of the light or change your position, it is more difficult for makeup/hair and the stylists to fix the issue.  When you change your position you make it trickier for us to adjust wrinkles in fabric or see that flyaway hair.

Maintaining Makeup/hair

  • Changing/Touching Makeup We know you feel super beautiful with that extra coat of mascara that you think you can’t live without.  The makeup/hair look you are wearing is a look that was decided and agreed on by the client and communicated to the makeup artist.  Adding or changing your makeup and hair is inappropriate and unprofessional .   If you are modeling for a shoot, it’s not your job to change your makeup or restyle your hair.
  • Hair Tossing/Twirling Most people don’t realize they are doing this.  It can be a mannerism or a nervous habit, but when you’re working on set, hairstylists expect you to keep your hands out of your hair.
  • Looking down on set… once your hair is in place.  As a makeup artist and a hair stylist.  This is a huge personal pet peeve of mine.  Whether it’s just a bad habit, or you realize you are doing it intentionally it’s destructive to makeup hair and sometimes wardrobe as well.  What you don’t know is that simple habit of looking down repeatedly can make you appear insecure about your appearance.  If you are looking down because you are unsure of your body position try practice posing at home in front of a mirror.  Practice a mock photo shoot while someone snaps shots with a cell phone.  Your body positioning and expressions will improve with practice.  When you are on set and your hair is in place, remember to keep your head up and follow directions.  Makeup artists and fashion stylists have years of experience in creating the best image possible.  As soon as your hair is out of place, makeup/hair has to step in to fix it.  I can’t think of a good reason as talent to be looking down on set, unless you are unsure of your footing.  I don’t mind if you have to look down once or twice, but consistently looking down in-between shots, especially after you have been instructed not to do so is an unprofessional habit you should break immediately.   If you have makeup/hair & a stylist.  It is their job to make sure that you look great.

Chewing gum – It’s ok to freshen your breath, but remember to spit it out before you go on set.

 

Maintaining wardrobe – There’s a lot of prep work that goes into making sure the clothing looks perfect on camera.  Remember every time you are wearing something prepped for a shoot, its been steamed, ironed, altered, pinned and clamped.  It’s your job as the talent to keep it clean and wrinkle free.  A few simple rules to observe when you are wearing wardrobe.

  • Don’t Cross Your Arms It wrinkles your clothing which creates more steaming work for your stylist.
  • Perfume On shoot days, skip wearing perfumes and heavily scented products.
  • Clear Deodorant Deodorant is very very important, but you don’t want to leave a mark on clothing that belongs  to the client so stick to wearing clear deodorant when working.
  • Sitting Ask your stylist if it’s ok to sit down once you are dressed.
  • Eating You should also ask if it’s ok to eat in the clothing.
  • Smoking No it’s not ok to smoke once you’re dressed and it can be heavily frowned upon outside of the studio even when you’re not in wardrobe.
  • Leave the Styling to the Pro Although you might feel the need to adjust and style the look yourself.  When you are on set, this is the stylist’s job to make sure the clothing is sitting and photographing correctly.  You might feel you are fixing an issue, but it’s almost impossible unless you have a full length mirror and know exactly how the light is hitting you in each and every shot.  Leave this to the pros.

Clothing on the Floor – Never throw, pile, leave wardrobe on the ground.  Never! I can’t believe I have to go over this one.  Extenuating circumstances and tight shot lists make this rule difficult to observe at times, but not impossible.  If you are pressed for time, go back and clean up once you are done shooting.  I wish I could say it’s just teens and kids who forget to honor this rule.  It’s sad for me to admit how many adults violate this rule.  It’s very disrespectful to the stylist and sends a bad message to everyone on set including the client.  I’ve been on countless sets over the past decade and I have never heard even once for the stylist or client say “it’s ok” or instruct models to throw clothing on the floor in a pile inside out.  It’s common sense, and I know your mother taught you better.

On set I’ve seen models and talent forget or unknowingly disregard set etiquette while wearing wardrobe.   This can lead to a lot of extra pressing, steaming, stain lifting and frustration.   If you’re uncertain, it’s ok to ask your stylist before you do something questionable.  Honoring set rules is important because it’s a reflection of your professionalism and your agency.  If you observe these modeling set etiquette guidelines, it shows everyone that you are a true working pro and you want to come back to work on set again.

 

Atlanta based Emily Sistrunk is a Product and Wardrobe Fashion Stylist with an extensive advertising client list.  Sistrunk is the Style Director for Pixhouse Studio.  Her specialties include fashion styling, product styling, on figure styling, creative direction, soft goods and product laydown for advertising, fashion, sporting apparel, children’s apparel, catalog, and commercials.

  • Pixhouse Photography Studio  PixHouse is a boutique product photography studio in Atlanta, GA that specializes in Apparel, Tabletop, Packaging, E-commerce, and Direct Mail photography. Pixhouse has a team specializing in Location Shoots and On-Figure for Editorial and Catalog productions.
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Causes of Acne – Makeup Artist Advice

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As soon as a breakout happens you’re willing to try anything to clear it up.  We have all heard causes of acne over the years, some of them are true, some are myths.  I wanted to share some common and often overlooked acne triggers.

Makeup brushes & sponges I can’t tell you how often someone sitting in my makeup chair asks what I use to clean my makeup brushes.  They usually tell me they have brushes but they don’t know how to keep them clean.  I think of all the bacteria that grows on the brushes, and then it’s dipped back into the makeup.  I cringe when I see people keep the original sponge that comes with a makeup compact.  Every time the sponge or brush touches your skin it comes into contact with oils and bacteria.  Over time the accumulation of bacteria will grow in the makeup and on the sponge.  Your makeup will become contaminated with bacteria, yes, the makeup you are putting on your skin.  It’s crucial to keep your makeup brushes and application sponges clean.  The beauty blender sponges are wonderful because they are washable with soap and water.    My favorite brush cleaner to use on set brush cleaner is Parian Spirit.  It’s also sold under the brand name of Japonesque.  I find this brush cleaner leaves minimal residue and it really lifts all of the makeup out of the brushes, even stubborn cream and wax based makeup.  It’s environmentally friendly.  I use this so frequently that I buy the half gallon size.  When I’m home I use Davinci Brush Cleaning Soap, or  Shea Moisture Bar to thoroughly shampoo and clean my brushes.

Old makeup can cause acne.  I know we all have a favorite foundation, cream blush, or even a powder that we’ve been hanging on to in our makeup drawer.  When you go to put it on, you probably don’t take into account how old the product is.  How much bacteria is festering in your makeup based on its age?  Makeup does have a shelf life, and yes it does expire.   In general, anything cream based should be thrown away after 8 months at the most.  Powders and lipsticks need to be thrown away at 2 years old, especially if the powders are building an oily film on them.  If your makeup starts to smell, throw it away.  If it looks funny or has changed in texture, throw it away.  If you can’t remember how long ago you purchased a product, chances are it’s expired.

Shampoo and hair products come into contact with our skin on a daily basis.  We put so much effort into finding makeup products that are non-comedogenic.  The problem is we don’t think twice as we slather on hair products, shampoos and conditioners that can be loaded with skin irritants and oily pore clogging ingredients.  Yes we might not be applying these products directly to our face, but the residual can sweat, rub, and rinse off on to our face, chest, and back.  When you’re trying to rule out what might be triggering the breakout, ask yourself if you’ve added anything new to your hair care routine.  Pay attention to where you’re breaking out.  If it’s along your hairline, or your cheeks and jawline it could potentially be hair products.

I’m always on the search for the next greatest product. A few years ago I tried a high end salon shampoo and conditioner which promised diamond shine and extra moisture for beautiful shiny healthy hair.  I did notice some marginal hair benefits from using the new hair cleansing  duo, unfortunately any benefits were completely outweighed by the cystic acne breakout I was experiencing from the product after 2 weeks of use.  It’s impossible for me to say the sodium laurel sulfate (SLS) was the culprit, it could be have been the oils, SLS, fragrances, or anything that my skin wasn’t used to.  I knew I hadn’t added anything else new into my beauty routine besides the shampoo and conditioner.  That was the point when I started researching sulfates and decided to try sulfate free products to see if it would clear up my breakout.

I’ve had a lot of luck with switching to sulfate free cleansers and shampoos.  Some experts argue that Sodium Laurel Sulfate has no effect on skin and acne. I’ve noticed it makes a huge difference for my sensitive eczema prone skin.

Nutrition when most people think about taking care of their skin they think only about the external solutions such as sunscreen, cleansers, moisturizers, serums, and spot treatments.   Skin is the body’s biggest organ.  We should consider taking care of our skin from the inside as well as the outside.  Proper hydration, foods rich in antioxidants, a variety of vitamins and minerals, and omega-3 fatty acids play a role in skin health.  I first learned about this concept by reading the Dr. Perricone’s Prescription book.  Over the years of being a makeup artist I have noticed the people who have beautiful skin also place a priority on their health and diet.  It makes sense, if you’re eating highly processed foods full of sugar and hydrogenated oils and preservatives, your skin can reflect your diet choices.  Your skin also reflects when you’re getting the right balance of nutrition and hydration.

A good read that is more targeted to acne and clearing up your skin is The Clear Skin Diet

Stress can exacerbate an existing breakout.  It seems there are many people who sit down in my makeup chair with a breakout who could use a little less stress in their life.  Studies have been conducted on the link between stress being a direct cause of acne.  Although findings don’t point to stress being the cause of acne by itself.  There is a link to stress and acne flare ups.  Especially those who are prone to breaking out in the first place.  Perhaps the stress leads to increased face touching and rubbing, or picking which is an absolute acne no no.  Maybe the stress leads to poor dietary choices, sleeping habits, and skipping important steps in your skincare regimen.

Caffeine intake is something to consider cutting back on if you’re experiencing a breakout.  Coffee, tea, and caffeine filled sodas most likely don’t directly lead to the cause of acne, but they can rev up a breakout.  Water is best.

Our cell phones go everywhere with us.  We touch them when our hands are dirty, and we pick them right back up when our hands our clean.  The problem is many people are not in the habit of sanitizing their phone as much as they’re washing their hands.  Cell phones carry oil, bacteria, germs, ewwww!  Now think of all the places we set our phone down through the day before we bring it up to touch our skin.  And then there’s the whole issue of using someone’s phone.

Exfoliation – too much or too little are both potential causes of acne.  The top layer of dead skin cells can clog pores, which traps sebum and leads to acne.  Exfoliation can help in keeping skin clear.  Too much exfoliation isn’t a good thing, the purpose of exfoliation is to slough off dead skin cells, not remove and damage the top layer of our skin.  Moderation is key.  If you’re experiencing a big breakout, handheld rotating brush facial cleansers can be too abrasive, spread bacteria, and make your breakout worse.

I’m sure you have heard about using a dab of toothpaste to treat a pimple.  It’s actually not a great solution and can potentially harm your skin.  Toothpaste is an abrasive cleaner full of anti-cavity, fluoride and whitening ingredients.  It can be irritating to the skin and possibly cause a burn to sensitive skin.  I would opt for a lower 2.5% benzoyl peroxide spot treatment instead of the toothpaste.  Other options for spot treatment you can try is tea tree oil and hemp oil.  I know it sounds counterproductive to use oil as a spot treatment but both hemp and tea tree oil are helpful in treating acne and restoring a healthy moisture balance to the skin.

Medications can trigger breakouts.  Watch out for steroids, iodine, lithium, topical steroids and hydrocortisone creams.  Oral contraceptives can also trigger a break out.  Over time birth control has been proven to clear up acne.  It’s important to remember it doesn’t happen overnight.  In the beginning of taking the new medication, the breakout can get worse before it gets better.

 

It’s important to pay attention to changes in your daily routine that could be causing your skin to breakout.  The biggest thing with acne that’s important to remember is if you can’t clear it up on your own, seek the help of a dermatologist.

 

Sulfate Free Products I Personally Use & Recommend

Loreal Everpure Moisture Shampoo

Loreal Everpure Moisture Conditioner

Pureology Moisture Shampoo & Conditioner

Devacurl No Poo

Alterna Caviar Anti-Aging Shampoo

Murad Clarifying Cleanser

Burt’s Bee Baby Shampoo & Wash

Vitabath Body Wash

 

 

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