Take A Look Inside An A-List Make-Up Artist’s Kit
Take A Look Inside An A-List Make-Up Artist’s Kit

Take A Look Inside An A-List Make-Up Artist’s Kit

Known for her runway and editorial work, Liz Pugh has been a make-up artist for over 20 years. With an expert understanding of what works, it’s no wonder she has such a loyal clientele – which includes A-listers like Claudia Schiffer and Adele. Here, we took the chance to look at what’s inside her kit – from the brushes she’s never without to the £5.99 mascara she swears by.
By Rebecca Hull

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“Brushes are an addiction of mine. My favourites come from Japan – you can get so many that are made with natural hair, including the Hakahudo brushes. For synthetic brushes, MyKitCo. Is hard to beat, or there’s Jones Road and Otis Batterbee – I have a selection from all three and recommend them all. I also like a good sponge but I only use the ones from beautyblender – nothing else compares. I don’t use them to apply foundation – it wastes the product – but I do wet them down, squeeze the water out with a tissue, then press it over the skin to blend everything together. It’s especially useful if I’ve used a cream contour or blush. Sometimes I’ll use a dry beautyblender to apply some powder and set everything down.”



“Kohl pencils are my preference for lining the eyes. The best ones I’ve tried are Victoria Beckham’s Kajal Liners. There’s time to play with them a bit and then they set down for hours – the pigment is amazing. I also love Makeup By Mario’s selection and Pat McGrath Labs for the deepest, jet-black liners. Everyone should own a brightening cream eyeliner – that’s a shade Victoria Beckham has nailed. You never want to go for bright white, as it’s too harsh. For a chunkier pencil, Chanel’s Stylo Ombre et Contour sticks are great, as are the ones by Mii Cosmetics and Forever Eye Colour Crayon. If you want to try an eye gloss, I can’t recommend Surratt enough – just use the tiniest amount. Finally, I’ve had M·A·C’s Pro Longwear Paint Pot in ‘Groundwork’ in my kit for years. It’s universally flattering and acts as a great base for any eyeshadow.”


“Recently, I’ve come to the end of several products in my kit. That includes Makeup By Mario’s Master Matte Eyes Eyeshadow Palette – it’s the best if you like a matte finish. I’ve also just used up my Charlotte Tilbury Sophisticate Palette and the Super Nudes Easy Eye Palette. The shades in both are so wearable. I get through heaps of Kiko’s eye pencils too.”


“I’m not big on primers, but if I were to use one, it would be Cle De Peau’s or Laura Mercier’s – few can rival either of them. For foundation, I always go back to Armani Luminous Silk which is the most universally flattering base. It allows you to see the skin, while also smoothing it out. For highlighter, my go-to is Westman Atelier’s Lit Up Stick and Rose Inc’s Cream Highlighters. I steer clear of powder highlighters as they tend to enhance fine lines. Sometimes, I warm up some of Weleda’s Skin Food in my hands and just press a small amount on the tops of the cheeks to give the skin a healthy-looking glow.”



“A gua sha is always in my kit – it doesn’t matter which brand, they all work in prepping the skin and encouraging glow. I am never without Jillian Dempsey’s Gold Bar either. Though the results are temporary, it does work to sculpt the cheekbones and jawline. A selection of sticky and masking tape is essential, too – especially when I need to get creative and create new shapes around the eyes. Tape is great for picking up glitter remnants as well. Finally, my kit isn’t complete without some eyelash curlers. Shu Uemura did the best ones but they’re sadly discontinued – you can try finding a pair on eBay. Failing that, I use the ones by Surratt and Shiseido. Often, I’ll heat them with a hairdryer for a few seconds, let them cool a little then curl the lashes before applying mascara.”


“I carry lots of black and brown mascaras in my kit. One of my favourites is Kiko’s Smart Colour Mascara in ‘Warm Brown’. It’s affordable and gives the lashes a softer finish. Tubing mascaras are great, too – Kevyn Aucoin’s The Volume Mascara and the Hourglass Unlocked Instant Extensions Mascara are my favourites. I always try mascaras out on myself before they make it into my kit. It has to be put through its paces to make the cut.”



“My kit is full of lip liners. I use them over the full lip – not just around the edges – and blend them out with my finger before dabbing a lip balm on top. Anything you apply on top will last much longer this way because once the colour wears off, your liner is still intact underneath. My most-used lip products are M·A·C’s Glow Play Lip Balms – I have every shade – and the Hourglass Glossy Balms. Both are so moisturising and creamy. The best red I buy on repeat is the Pat McGrath Labs ‘Elson Red’. It suits everyone but is also low maintenance, as it doesn’t budge. For a neutral tone, it’s always ‘Pillow Talk’ by Charlotte Tilbury.”


“As a make-up artist, cleanliness is essential. Inside my kit, you’ll find Beauty So Clean Cosmetics Sanitiser and the Cinema Secrets spray. Both help me to wipe down my kit and keep my brushes clean when time is of the essence. Any synthetic brushes I own that have had cream or liquids on them are washed in Fairy Liquid – preferably the antibacterial one. For me, it’s the only thing that gives them a thorough clean. I’ll then squeeze out the excess water and dry them flat on kitchen paper. If you’re doing this yourself, leave them on a radiator to help them dry and maintain their shape.”

Follow @LizPughMakeUpArtist  for more beauty tips & inspiration.

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