7 Beauty Products to Help You Look Great on Video Calls
For even the most photogenic among us, grainy lower-resolution webcams can be horribly unforgiving—but what to do in this current global coronavirus crisis, when video-conferences, webinars and Facetimes with family and friends have become a daily lifeline for responsible social-distancers and the self-quarantined? Looking for quick and easy ways to look better on video chats? Here are seven beauty products that will help you look as beautiful on camera as you do in real life.
Beauty Ring Light
Ever wonder how beauty gurus on Instagram and YouTube always look like they have such flawless, glossy skin? One key product almost all of them have on hand is a beauty ring light, like this Impressions Vanity GlowMe LED ring light (HK$350 at Revolve.com). Many of these circular LED lights—which you can also find in plenty of convenience and department stores around Hong Kong, specifically in Causeway Bay—come with three or four light settings: daylight white-light, a warmer yellow-ish light, and an amber-tone light. And they're available in all different sizes: as phone clip-ons, desktop minis, or standing studio-style, the original mamma-jamma of all ring lights, the Diva Ring Light.
MAC Studio Fix Powder Plus Foundation
If you're an eagle-eyed makeup obsessive and have ever been on set for a professional photoshoot, behind the scenes at a television network, or in the makeup trailer on a movie set, you'll have noticed that nearly every makeup artist has at least a handful of MAC Studio Fix powder plus foundation compacts (HK$310 at MAC) on hand. This OG of good-on-camera powders has a slightly soft-to-creamy matte finish that delivers a solid dose of medium-coverage pigment, so finely milled that it looks just like (perfect) skin on camera.
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Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Foundation
Designed specifically to create a natural, flawless look on HD broadcasts, Make Up For Ever's Ultra HD Foundation (HK$380 at Make Up For Ever), along with the brand's entire HD line, which includes products such as serum, loose powder, pressed powder, stick foundation, and SPF, is another behind-the-scenes professional secret weapon for achieving perfect on-camera skin.
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette
You know that Instagram filter that makes your skin look *chef's kiss* perfect? This Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette (HK$570 at Lane Crawford) is, like, that Instagram filter, if you could put that filter directly on your face and wear it around all day long. While it may appear to be a highlighting palette, don't be fooled. Use these Ambient Lighting pressed powders to their full advantage by applying them with a big fluffy brush all over your face for a soft-light finish. Note that this is one of the most popular products from the Hourglass collection, so it's often sold out—it may be worth connecting directly with a Lane Crawford sales associate to ask them to notify you when new stock arrives. Alternatively, you can order it through Harvey Nichols' international site—they can ship directly to your home or to a Harvey Nichols location in Hong Kong for faster pickup.
Nars Afterglow Eyeshadow Palette
When applying makeup for a video call, stick to matte and cream finishes and consider choosing a warm colour palette, especially if you're going for a more natural look—cool-tone cosmetics and glossy and sparkly finishes can often look exaggerated and harsh on video. There are plenty of new and covetable warm-tone makeup options on the market—we love this Nars Afterglow Eyeshadow palette (HK$520 at Sephora Hong Kong). For a slightly bolder look, try deep reds and coppers, which look more dramatic on camera—one (surprising) palette I find myself going back to again and again is Kylie Cosmetics' Burgundy Palette (US$42 at Kylie Cosmetics).
Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat Lip Liner
To make sure your features aren't washed out on screen, especially under poor lighting conditions (or even too-bright lights), make sure to throw on some lippie before the call. For a natural look, look for a matte or cream lip liner in a colour just slightly more intense than your natural lip colour—I like Charlotte Tilbury's Lip Cheat collection of lip liners (HK$141 at Net-a-Porter), and have dozens of Pillow Talk lipsticks and liners stashed away in all my drawers and handbags, in case I need lip definition in a pinch—you never know.
Ouai Super Dry Shampoo
Have you noticed that video conferencing hair is... absolutely terrifying? Just kidding, that was mean. But real talk, on-camera hair is one of the hardest beauty skills to master. If you're appearing on camera professionally on a regular basis and broadcasting to millions, you should definitely have a pro stylist on speed-dial. But if you're just a casual video-conferencer who wants to make the best of what you've already got, consider having a texturising hairspray or ultra-fine dry shampoo on hand. I like (and hoard) Ouai Super Dry Shampoo (HK$180 at Harvey Nichols Hong Kong)—spritz it on your roots and get instant refresh and volume (you know what they say: The bigger the hair, the closer to heaven), without any stickiness or stiffness. If you're looking for slightly more control, consider Ouai's Texturizing Hair Spray (HK$220 at Sephora Hong Kong), which imparts volume, texture, and a light-medium hold—also without stickiness and stiffness.
See also: 7 Best Dry Shampoos In Hong Kong