We live and breathe social media and that means we share and document just about everything.

IN this age of social media, there is pressure to look camera-ready at all times. We are constantly documenting and sharing just about everything that goes on in our lives, including our MOTD (make-up of the day).

I met Will Malherbe, Smashbox Cosmetics director of international education, artistry and communications, who says: “A girl should always look camera-ready, because you never know what it may lead to. You never know if your big Hollywood moment is just around the corner.

“Plus, if a friend snaps a photo of you and tags you on their social media accounts, your future Mr Perfect may just see it!”

HOHENSTEIN-ERNSTTHAL: Supporters of Italian Yamaha rider Valentino Rossi cheer during the MotoGP competition of the Moto Grand Prix of Germany at the Sachsenring Circuit on July 2 in Hohenstein-Ernstthal, eastern Germany. AFP PHOTO.


So what’s a girl got to do to achieve a great photo-ready make-up look? First things first. Always use primers. This is where brands like Smashbox Cosmetics save the day.

The Los Angeles-based company has been around since the 1990s. Recently, the brand has been re-launched as Sephora Malaysia, much to the delight of makeup mavens here.

“A good primer helps to neutralise and balance your skin condition before make-up. Choose a primer based on what the skin needs. Don’t just choose a primer because your friends are using a certain brand or because you saw it in a cool advertisement,” he says.

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From left: Sunway Iskandar CEO Gerard Soosay, Sunway Property Malaysia and Singapore deputy managing director Tan Wee Bee and managing director Sarena Cheah show the scale model of Sunway Iskandar.

Since 2000, Smashbox’s Photo Finish Foundation Primer has been its star product. The now-legendary formula was first created to minimise touch-ups during a shoot so a photographer’s flow wouldn’t be disrupted.

“Our primers are developed to help makeup stay longer too.”

Another tip from Malherbe is to wear camera-friendly foundation which has been tested in different lighting scenarios. Smashbox Cosmetics are meant to be wearable from the photoshoot to the streets, so you’re in good hands.

“These days, we can’t afford to have foundation that looks good indoors but not outdoors. We don’t have time for that. We want something that works around the clock,” he says.

You know when you watch make-up tutorials by beauty bloggers on Instagram and you see how they nicely highlight their features like the nose and lips?

Highlighting the face is a trend in make-up but Malherbe cautions us to be mindful of shine and shimmer.

“Highlighting is a trend, and strobing is too. We’re working with a lot of metallics on the lips and eyes but be specific in the product placement.

“Look at the shape of your face. For example, you can highlight the centre of your nose but don’t highlight it all the way to the tip.”

With too much highlight, at some angles and lighting, the skin may appear oily. And when taking photos, be sure to find the right lighting and angle.

“Plan in advance if you can. Be adventurous when it comes to the lips. Break the rules. It’s fine. If you feel like wearing a grey lipstick to match your grey handbag, do it,” he says.

Or, you can always apply a layer of Always On Liquid Lipstick by Smashbox, which comes in 20 shades or wear one of the many shades from its Be Legendary lipstick range.


Don’t look like you’re trying too hard.

“Bear in mind Coco Chanel’s quote about accessorising, ‘Before you leave the house, look in the mirror and take one thing off’. This should be applied to makeup as well,” he adds.

Being camera-ready (makeup wise) is always a good idea, but you don’t need 10 layers of makeup.

“Take inspiration from Instagram. Flip through magazines with high-end photoshoots and be inspired. But don’t copy. Instead, make it your own.”


1. Use the right primer!

2. Blend a camera-friendly foundation on your skin.

3. Be mindful when highlighting your features. Don’t go overboard.

4. Be adventurous with the lips. Go bold! Let the colour stand out in pictures sans Instagram filters.

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