Patty Bell of Pittsburgh PA – Make-up Artist Interview
Enjoy another informative interview about cosmetics and skin care from Pittsburgh based professional makeup artist Patty Bell.
Patty’s extensive client list includes: The Young and the Restless, The West Wing, Jeopardy, Fox Sports, The NFL Network, American Eagle Outfitters, Nike, Gatorade, Good Morning America, Entertainment Tonight, VH1, People Magazine and more.
Q: Tell a little about yourself personally and if you attended school or you are a self taught makeup artist?
A: I was an artist first, and did some modeling and then went to beauty school later to get my esthetician’s license. I have been doing makeup since 1986, but having an art background really helps in this business. It’s all about blending!
Q: Do you think going to school for make-up artistry is important to excel in the business later on?
A: A teacher once told me, the more you know, the more you are worth. In today’s market, that is so true, but going to school does not necessarily guarantee you a job…it’s all about your work.
Q: Did you always wanted to be an artist, or did you stumble upon your talent by chance? Who or what inspired you to become a makeup artist?
A: I could always draw faces and in high school, I used to sit in math class drawing eyes. I “fell” into makeup via modeling, and my next door neighbor offered me my first job in makeup, representing Ralph Lauren cosmetics. It was in the department stores where I practiced my trade and eventually got “discovered” by my agent, who liked my work & hired me on my first commercial. 23 years later, I’m still loving every moment of it. Way Bandy was my idol and inspiration growing up.
Q: What is your favorite or most exciting aspect about your job?
A: My favorite part of this job has definitely been the people I have met … it’s been an amazing ride! And … the fact that I get to play with makeup everyday & get paid for it, is pretty cool, too!
Q: What surprises you most about working as a makeup artist?
A: That I still love it after all of these years…every job is different!
Q: Describe your “Classic Approach to Beauty.” how do you define beauty?
A: I am a fan of the less is more approach, but true beauty is within.
Q: What individual products and brands you’re “addicted” to at the moment and you use on a daily basis?
A: Right now, I am “addicted” to waterproof eyeliners, foundation primers, flushed cheeks, and natural lip colors that stain the lips.
Q: What are some of the most basic but effective skin care tips in general that you have, that are really important?
A: Staying out of the sun is the most important thing you can do for your skin, also: use a sunscreen year round, get a good night’s sleep, use an eye cream, and follow a good skin care routine.
Q: What is the biggest skin care dont’s?
A: #1. Don’t smoke!!
Don’t go to the tanning bed!
Don’t sleep with your makeup on!
Q: What do you find to be the most common mistakes women make with makeup? What’s the worst thing a woman can do to her skin?
A: The worst mistake women make with makeup is not matching foundation to the skin, and wearing too much makeup … makeup should not be a mask! Again, the worst thing a woman can do to her skin is ruin it by smoking and tanning! It truly does take 10 years for sun damage to show up on your face.
Q: What do you think are best/worst trends in the makeup / skin care industry right now?
A: The best trend in makeup right now, which is great for everyone, is “Organic” Makeup & “Green” Makeup. Cosmetic companies are finally getting the fact that women want to look good & use natural products on their skin.
The worst trend is that cosmetic companies are still putting toxic chemicals into our cosmetics & skin care. Please support Campaign for SafeCosmetics.org
Q: Do teenage girls needs to splurge on high-priced makeup products, or are drugstore items are just as satisfactory?
A: Drug store items have come a long way, and many items are comparable to department store makeup. But teens need to know that their favorite drugstore line may be owned by that famous department store line!
Q: What feature(s) do you love to accentuate?
A: The eyes have always been my thing, but I love seeing great skin.
Q: What are your steps for the perfect, flawless, natural look?
A: The flawless face always starts with a great canvas. Primers, tinted moisturizers and natural looking foundations that blend effortlessly with the skin are the key.
Q: What is a really quick way to change a day look to a special occasion or nighttime face?
A: Day into night makeup is all about making your eyes a little more smoky, a highlight on the cheekbone and lips a little more sparkly & shiny … and definitely, more mascara!
Q: What are the differences between applying makeup on models and on real women?
A: No difference except that models are ALL airbrushed and photoshopped to perfection! Models sometimes get a little more glam than the average woman, but it’s all the same, just depends on the job and situation.
Q: In terms of eyeliner, if you had to choose between a pencil, liquid, or creme/gel based, which one would you choose? Why?
A: I am not a fan of liquid liners- they look to hard. I only love the longer lasting eyeliners, and gels … who has time to be touching up eyeliner all day?!
Q: Lip gloss or Lipstick. Which product is best? Why?
A: It’s all preference … lip gloss can give a really fresh look to your makeup while lipstick tends to last a lot longer. I love them both!
Q: What should a client consider before deciding to try permanent makeup? What is the difference between permanent and semi-permanent makeup?
A: I’m not a fan of permanent makeup … I’ve seen some really bad jobs & that was enough for me.
Q: What brand/type of concealer is your favorite for covering up the after effects of a late night out i.e. under-eye circles, blemishes?
A: I love YSL Touche Eclat for under the eyes, it brightens & conceals without looking cakey.
Q: How about airbrush spray makeup trend? Are these products better or easier to use than standard sponge or finger application? If yes when would you recommend using them?
A: Leave airbrushing to the professionals- it’s best for HD TV, and very hard to do on yourself. Right now, it is a trend, but we have been using it for years.
Q: What do your clients think of you? What are some individual testimonials?
A: I would hope that they have enjoyed working with me and more importantly, loved their makeup application. I strive to make them look like themselves … only better!
Q: Would you share some of your future goals, your life motto, any words of wisdom that get you by in life and professional career?
A: I was once told by a director, that, “The sign of a good makeup artist is …. you never want to notice the makeup”. That was very early on in my career & has stuck with me all of these years. Makeup should be used to enhance the features not hide them … unless it is a high fashion shoot, or cosmetic ad, and then … it is all about the makeup!
Q: What tips and advice do you have for aspiring makeup artists just starting out?
A: Your work ethic and professionalism is just as important as your makeup application. We are all good makeup artists but it is your attitude and how you treat your clients and actors that gets you re-hired. It is all about them, leave your own problems behind you. Be the best you can be on every job, no matter how big or small, and never, ever be late for a job! And … never stop learning :)
Visit Patty Bell Makeup to see more of her work.