6 Oscars Makeup Tips for Red Carpet Glamour

It’s officially awards season, which means we’ll be scrolling Oscars makeup looks and feeling inspired by red carpet glam for the foreseeable future. There’s something about that A-list flawlessness that feels untouchable, but it doesn’t need to be – in fact, you can get your own red carpet finish for your next night out. Max Factor Makeup Artist Caroline Barnes has all the tips you need, from prepping the dreamiest base for foundation to achieving camera-ready lash volume. Here’s how she gets the stars ready…

1. Ace Your Acids

We all know good makeup starts with good skincare, and Caroline Barnes follows the same routine every time to ensure an A-list complexion. “I always start with mild exfoliation with an AHA wipe,” she says, “then I apply a good moisturiser to suit the client’s skin type”. AHAs (also known as alpha hydroxy acids) are perfect for pre-night out, because they dissolve dulling dead skin cells, creating a smoother skin surface. The result: smooth skin equals glowing skin, and who wouldn’t want that?

2. Prime for Your Complexion

Just as you would tailor your cleanser, toner and moisturiser to your skin type, Caroline says it’s important to choose a primer that suits your complexion, too. “I choose the base depending on my client’s skin type. Usually it's either Miracle Prep Illuminating & Hydrating Primer for a radiance boost or Pore Minimising & Mattifying Primer on oilier t-zones.”

3. Wear This Celeb-Loved Foundation

“I need to use a foundation that’s adaptable for the red carpet,” says Caroline, “and that’s why Facefinity All Day Flawless 3-in-1 Foundation is so good. It allows me to achieve a really polished finish in areas I need to conceal, but I can also apply it lightly to areas that I want to keep fresh and natural.”

4. Bump Up Your Brows

“Red carpet makeup is all about structure and glamour,” explains Caroline. And few things add structure like face-framing brows, shaded and groomed to perfection. Start with Real Brow Fill & Shape Pencil to define. Then, tame using Brow Revival; a brow mascara Caroline calls one of her “favourite eyebrow products, as it gives the brows a thicker look, and keeps them tidy and in place”.

5. Create a Fuller Flutter

When it comes to Oscars eye makeup, Caroline selects eyeshadow based on what an actress is wearing, making sure the shades complement each other flawlessly. “Whether this is subtle or strong, I will always apply a bold lash,” she adds, “and I’m obsessed with False Lash Effect Max Out Primer to prep. It’s electric blue, so it makes lashes look ultra-black and glossy when mascara is applied on top.” Try teaming with False Lash Effect Mascara in Deep Raven Black for award-winning drama.

6. Try this Cult Classic Lipstick

“For the lips, the best, most cult-worthy and long-lasting lipstick will always be Lipfinity. Whether it's a nude or a pillar box red, red carpet lips cannot budge and must remain perfect,” says Caroline. Right now, we’re celebrating 20 years of this lust-have lipstick with the Rising Stars collection, which features new shades, including Stardust; a nude that was made for Hollywood nights. “I often add a sweep of Colour Elixir in a similar shade over the top,” Caroline adds. “This gives my client’s lip look extra depth and hydration.”

Looking for more makeup artist tricks?

Discover Caroline Barnes’ flawless foundation tips and her ultimate Max Factor must-have products.