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Bright, plump and radiant in all the right places, red-carpet skin is the real deal. From Simone Ashley to Rihanna, celebrities always seem to be sporting an otherworldly glow. And while half of it may be the result of a luxury facial the night before, or being prepped with pricy skincare brands like Augustinus Bader, makeup is arguably the most important part.
If a pro artist is feeling generous, they might take to Instagram to share the product breakdowns for certain looks. But the key to that supernatural gleam is often elusive. Until now, that is, as TikTok thinks it might've cracked the code.
Over the past few weeks the 'celebrity skin' hack has achieved viral status, and it's all thanks to @officialsavannahrae. In a video with 2.9 million views and counting, Savannah revealed the speedy trick her makeup artist friend uses to make skin look so great in pictures. "Okay, so a friend of mine does makeup for celebrities and I know that we all have the same question. I was like, 'Girl, how do they look so good on the red carpet?' and she was like, 'Listen, it is three steps.'"
Savannah's friend suggests starting with a hydrating primer like Becca Backlight Primer. The brand has discontinued that product range but she says that something like e.l.f. Poreless Putty Primer, $17, will work just as well. The next step is mixing two products on your skin. "She said most celebrity makeup artists swear by the Charlotte Tilbury Flawless Filter, and I personally really love this," says Savannah. She continues: "Then you mix it with a skin tint. Not a foundation."
Savannah proceeds to swipe Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Flawless Filter, $65, over her skin after applying a heavy helping of primer and a few dabs of what looks like Dior Backstage Face & Body Foundation, $73, which is super lightweight. "You do not need much of this at all," says Savannah, "but then you're going to use a really damp Beautyblender." The end finish is pretty impressive. "Like my texture is gone," says Savannah. "Do you see this glow? So there you have it."
Since Savannah's video, a handful of TikTokers have tried the hack with incredible results, like @_ayshabegum and @bexcxmpbell, who prove that it works across the board. But clear skin is a common denominator. Would the hack work on skin that perhaps isn't as smooth? I'd say my complexion is pretty textured, with large pores, breakouts and slight scarring. You don't need me to tell you that there is absolutely nothing wrong with that, though. These are all normal markers of healthy skin — and healthy skin isn't perfect.
But I'm trying to wean myself off foundation so this hack couldn't have come at a better time. Could it give me a good amount of coverage and make me glisten like a glazed doughnut in the sun without looking or feeling cakey? I delved straight into my makeup collection.
I smoothed the primer over my clean skin with my fingers and it looked instantly brighter and more dewy.
The star of the show is probably the Hollywood Flawless Filter. Like Savannah, I slicked a generous amount of the pearlescent pigment over my cheeks, chin, nose, forehead and brow bone, and dotted on a skin tint. Unlike thick foundation and concealer (which takes work), it was a piece of cake to blend this featherlight combination into my skin using a damp Beautyblender.
I can safely say that my makeup has never looked so good. It's impossible to erase skin texture but something about the iridescent particles in the Flawless Filter highlighter, combined with the skin-like coverage of the tint and the dewiness of the primer, made me look airbrushed. Any blemishes were diffused and it lent my skin a candlelit glow that was so pretty IRL.
Throughout the day I felt I needed a tad more coverage in certain places, such as on a big spot that had erupted on my cheek and my blue-toned under-eye circles. But that's nothing a little dot of concealer wouldn't minimise. Just know that the glow does most of the talking.
Since giving the 'celebrity skin' hack a go, I've been doing my makeup this way every day for both work and nights out. It cuts a chunk of time out of my makeup routine, too, as foundation takes a good while to perfect.
All in all, this trick seems to do the most in the smallest amount of time and I'm here for it. MakeupTok, you've come up trumps once again.