A makeup masterclass with Lorde's makeup artist Amber D

Lorde's makeup artist, Amber D, shared stories and tips in Auckland this week, giving guests behind-the-scenes access to the glamour and grind of life on the road.

Alongside celebrity meetings, including watching Beyonce and Jay Z embrace Lorde, she joked that the American mega star followed her performance at the Grammy's by again "opening for Lorde," at the Brits.

Constant travel had its funny sides with makeup touch-ups before flights landed bemusing the mostly middle-aged men who populated business class who often didn't know who the 17-year-old chart-topper was. Amber D also said dealing with a teenaged attention span meant her makeups were becoming ever quicker. She had to contend with a bobbing head, distracted by Instagram and the likes, meaning precise eyeliner application might end up accidentally extending into a cat's eye. "'You will be Amy Winehouse soon', I say."

The pair also joke about the label Lorde is sometimes landed with, due to her liking for wearing black and purple lips.

"I always call her teen goth and she hates it, cos she isn't really." But wearing black lace Tom Ford at the Brits she certainly channelled the "perfect goth" with a darker than normal lip, however, contrary to some reports it wasn't black and she never used white face paint, it was just that Ella Yelich-O'Connor was naturally pale.

The Lorde look three ways, on models Rhiannon, Amberly and Kendall at the M.A.C x Lorde master class. Picture / Janetta Mackay

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The international fashion for wearing a darker purple or red toned lip definitely has a lot to do with Lorde, says Amber D. Sales of dark lipsticks are up. "We, at M.A.C call it the Lorde effect."

"It's so crazy at the shows in the States, might be about 5000 people in the crowd and half of them will be wearing a dark lip."

Amber D, who is on secondment from her job as M.A.C senior artist for Oceania to tour with Lorde, explained that the basic Lorde look had evolved in their nine months together. She showed three versions on models. At the heart of all the looks is luminous skin, with the aim of the teen not looking overly made-up.

As with all artistry there's plenty of layering going on. For the Grammys, where Lorde appeared with witchy black fingers, Amber D explained that she simply painted black nail polish onto her fingertips over a gel polish and then after the performance removed the polish, leaving the gel, so Lorde's manicured hands could wrap prettily around the two awards she collected.

Asked by Viva if Lorde was likely to break out into a new look, Amber D said having established a signature style with dark lips for shows they would stick with that, albeit always varying colours a little.

When off Lorde duty, Ella Yelich-O'Connor generally did not wear a lot of makeup and was confident at applying her own basic everyday standby of Mineralize powder, and a little eyeliner. Lip-wise she had even been playing with a peachy orange shade for fun.


Prep step: Skin preparation is vital for making makeup seem minimal while guaranteeing it goes the distance. On a clean face and over lip balm and eye cream, apply primer before foundation.

M.A.C x Lorde eyeliner and lipstick, $40 each, available in stores from June 27.

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Amber D uses M.A.C Lightful Softening Lotion (a toner), Prep n Prime Vibrancy Eye to smooth the eye contour area and moisturising Lip Conditioner. For a luminous base she mixes Strobe Lotion with Natural Radiance Primer in Pink.

Face base: Foundation is applied lightly as needed, with a brush to polish over skin, followed by concealer to any facial areas requiring extra attention. Then a highlighter is used to brighten around the eyes, on the bridge of the nose and in the lip bow. Translucent loose powder is used sparingly on the T-zone, with a compact powder added if more coverage is needed, especially to disguise any breakouts. Coverage is greater for concerts and requires extra attention to blending for high-definition television appearances. A touch of blush adds a little colour and contour to cheeks.

Amber uses Mineralize Moisture Fluid Foundation (in the very light shade NC15), with a 188 brush, followed by Prep n Prime Highlighter in Radiant Rose and a professional concealer palette with six shades, then Prep n Prime Loose Powder and sometime also Mineralize Skin Finish, with So Sweet So Easy cream blush.

Eyes: Lorde's strong brows require little attention, other than a little gap filling and grooming.

Amber uses Penultimate Brow Pencil in Brown and Brow Set in Clear.

The standby eye base shade is a taupe tone that brings out her pale blue eyes. A cream shadow is used because it dries to a crease-proof finish and powder or even glitter can be layered over it. The base is taken a little under her wide-set eyes to help centre them. Sometimes a little jet-milled metallic powder shadow is applied to the centre of the lid for a slight wet-look shine, or a touch of pink highlighter. A fine tip liner is pressed into the lash line to create the impression of denser black lashes and sometimes extended for a subtle cat eye effect. A curler ensures lashes are lifted and then subtle mascara is applied.

Amber used Paint Pot in Groundwork as her regular eye base, then mixes up the accent shades, before applying Rapid Black Penultimate Black Liner and Everyday Extended Play mascara.

Lips: A deep purple toned pencil is the usual base to give depth to lipstick, even if the final colour varies from red to near black. Apply all over the lip and then sharpen the edge outline before applying lipstick with a wide flat concealer-style brush because this is quicker than fine one.

For performance, a little powder sets the lipstick, a trick that can be tried at home, but never apply directly to the lips as this will go gluggy and show. The trick is to take a single ply of tissue paper, and press the powder through this onto lips to create a matte effect.

Amber uses Vino lip pencil and favours the new Pure Heroine lipstick, which she says is shade between her other standbys: the more matte brighter purple Heroine and the darker Cyber shade. Ella especially likes Pure Heroine because its texture allows it to be pressed into lips as stain.

Finishing touch: Once the makeup is done, a little more highlighter is applied for extra luminosity, across the highest point of the cheekbone and the bridge of the nose and bow of lip.

Amber uses Pearl Cream Colour Base and sometimes sparingly adds a little Silver Dust loose powder highlighter blended out from the centre of the same areas.

Do women who wear make-up appear more trustworthy?

Women who wear make-up are regarded as more competent and professional. It’s because we instinctively associate a blemish-free face with a trustworthy person.

CLOTHES may make the man, but make-up can make or break a woman.

Psychologist Dr Arnaud Aubert says applying ‘war paint’ in the morning can make women more trustworthy.

No wonder that six out of ten women say they wouldn’t go to work without it, according to a survey by Superdrug.

“Make-up is a potent tool in influencing social judgements about the wearer,” says Dr Aubert, an experimental psychologist and associate professor at the department of neurosciences at the Université François-Rabelais in France.

“When you first meet someone, the brain focuses on the central part of the face, which is the main source of non-verbal communication.

“Within milliseconds, the brain processes facial cues, and forms social inferences, such as whether the person is trustworthy or untrustworthy.

“Flaws distract the brain’s attention; the more flaws [a person has], the less attention the observer pays to their facial expressions, decreasing the quality of non-verbal communication.

“So correcting these flaws with make-up doesn’t just improve your general appearance, it can actually enhance a person’s social assessment of you too,” says Dr Aubert.

The inverted triangle shape connecting the eyes and mouth has been dubbed ‘the social triangle’, and Dr Aubert’s theory certainly gives new urgency to powdering one’s nose.

But he’s not the first to find that beauty is in the eye of beholder.

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Nor are today’s beauty junkies the first to try and trick the brain into thinking they’re better-looking — ancient Egyptians believed cosmetics to be so powerful that they used kohl eyeliner to ward off evil spirits.

One 2006 study, by Buckinghamshire New University, in Britain, showed that women who wear make-up are perceived as healthier, more confident and better-employed than those without.

Another 2011 study, by Harvard University, conducted in conjunction with Procter and Gamble, also learned that lip-stick can make you more likeable.

“We found that cosmetics have a significant impact on how attractive a face appears, but also on how likeable, trustworthy and competent they appear,” said Nancy Etcoff, lead author and assistant clinical professor of psychology at the university.

“When flashed quickly, every cosmetic look significantly increased how attractive, competent, likeable and trustworthy the faces appeared to the same faces without make-up.

“When people could look at the faces for as long as they wanted to, all make-up looks increased competence and attractiveness once again.”

Even Esquire’s Sexiest Woman Alive 2013, actress Scarlett Johansson, doesn’t have the barefaced cheek to go au natural.

“Day to day, I’ll use concealer, blush, eyeliner and mascara, and I carry foundation with me,” she said.

Pop star Katy Perry goes one step further by sleeping in her slap: “I don’t really feel pretty ever without make-up, and so I would have to sleep with make-up on,” she said.

When it comes to putting your best face forward, however, more is not always more, according to Liz Dwyer, of the Beauty Bootcamp, in Dublin.

Scouse brow (painted eyebrows), and tide marks are just two of the beauty blunders that draw attention to your social triangle for all the wrong reasons, she says.

“There’s no doubt that make-up can help make a better first impression.”

“But a lot of girls don’t know what to do with it. Eight out of ten teenagers I come across now, I just want to scrub their faces. Most have gorgeous, youthful skin, yet they feel compelled to hide it beneath a vat of mismatched foundation.

“Foundation is meant to unify the skin, not camouflage all your features.”

Indeed, when Kim Kardashian shared the secret to her flawless complexion — contouring her face with layers of pale concealer — with fans on Twitter recently, her make-up looked like it had been applied with a trowel rather than a brush.

Dr Aubert agrees: “Make-up can be a very potent tool, but it has to be used properly.

“While make-up can help make a better first impression, ‘inappropriate’ make-up — make-up which does not match the social context — can have the opposite effect.

“The amount of make-up is not a problem, per se, but women who wear more make-up send more intense social cues, and risk inducing prejudice if their make-up does not fit the situation.”

Despite being Photoshopped to perfection in Versace’s spring 2014 ad campaign, Lady Gaga still says beauty is only skin deep: “Whether I’m wearing lots of make-up or no make-up, I’m the same person inside.”

For the 40% of women who prefer to go fresh-faced, less can still impress, says leadership and charisma coach, Jonathan Dowling:

“While genetic blemishes are beyond our control, many other things are not,” he says.

“A sincere smile — one of those great, broad smiles where even the eyes crinkle — is one of the most effective ways of creating a powerful first impression on strangers. Good eye contact is another way.

“Looking someone directly in the eye, when they speak to you, and vice versa, projects confidence, but don’t stare at them either.

“A good rule of thumb is to hold eye contact two-thirds of the time, and then follow the person’s gestures, or shift your gaze to their mouth the rest of the time.”

And if you buy just one colour, then make it red.

“Studies show that we perceive people who are wearing red, or even just standing beside a red wall, as more attractive and confident,” says Dowling, of Interpersonal impACT.

“For men, the answer could be to wear a red tie, and for women red-tinted cosmetics.”

“Red lips will always make a more lasting impression than nude,” says celebrity make-up artist, Ken Boylan.

“But it has to be the right shade or it will make your teeth look yellow.

“Always try on more than one,” he says, “and when you find the right one, remember to smile.”

How to make the most of your looks

* “mismatched foundation can be very distracting,” says liz dwyer of beauty bootcamp. “the perfect foundation should disappear into your jawline. if you can see where it starts and finishes, it’s the wrong shade.”

* “hd [high definition] brows are a great way to frame your face,” says top makeup artist ken boylan, “your eyebrows should be as close to your hair colour as possible.”

* “when applying mascara, place the brush at the roots and give it a good wiggle before gliding it through the lashes,” says liz. “this makes lashes appear thicker and more defined.”

* “lip liner is a must to keep statement lipstick in place,” says ken. “add a little lip gloss over your lippie to help make thin lips look fuller.”

Waitresses Who Wear More Makeup Get Better Tips From Guys, But Women Tip Everyone Equally

In today’s supremely disappointing news for feminists, studies show that men leave higher tips for waitresses who wear more makeup. Some gender stereotypes just won’t die, will they?

According to Laura Shin in her two-part “Ultimate Guide to Living on Tips” at Forbes, wearing makeup comes with a serious payoff for female waitstaff.

Ladies, wear makeup. While the feminist in me hates to break this news, a study in France showed that 50% more men left tips if the waitress wore makeup, and the average amount was 26% higher. Another study, also in France, found that red lipstick, when compared to pink and brown shades or au naturale, brought in the bucks.

Shin also cited a 2012 study by Nicolas Guéguen and Céline Jacob of the Université de Bretagne-Sud, who found that red lipstick specifically has an effect on tips from men. The particular shade of red is of no consequence. Plus, it’s just guys with this percentage prejudice — female diners are not influenced to tip better or more frequently based on the makeup their waitresses wear.

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I commend Shin for providing a comprehensive guide to making a living wage from a restaurant job, and while I understand that she is simply presenting the unfortunate truth here, encouraging women to accept this as fact is an issue. Women should not have to live with the fact that they are held to a different physical standard than their male counterparts.

While we may assume that male servers are also tipped higher based on physical attractiveness, this may not be the case. According to “Predictors of Male and Female Severs’ Average Tip Earnings,” a study published in Journal of Applied Social Psychology found that ”physical attractiveness was a much better predictor of waitresses’ average tips than of waiters’ average tips.” In short, being pretty had a much greater impact on female tips.

Female waitstaff are notoriously objectified by men that they serve. In fact, women restaurant workers report sexual harassment at five times the rate of employees in other professions. Encouraging waitresses to wear makeup and lightly touch their customers for higher tips tells them that just being good at your job is not enough. You need to be sexually desirable and flirtatious as well. Equivalent suggestions are not given to men.

Even if good looking guys did receive significantly higher tips than less attractive men, there is still a double standard at play here. A woman, no matter how naturally beautiful, is expected to go above and beyond to enhance that beauty with makeup in order to increase her income. She is being asked to alter her appearance.

As Stylite’s Ashley Hoffman says, “People who live off their looks are accustomed to piling a boatload of makeup on, but the thing is, waitresses aren’t models or actresses. They’re not there for viewing pleasure. They serve food.”

Gender discrimination is a reality that female workers face in any profession, and we’re not saying that being a feminist requires tossing all your bold lippy in the trash. But what’s especially interesting about the correlation between tips and makeup is that, besides being gross, it’s counterintuitive. In fact, a report released earlier this week found, once again, that men much prefer a natural, barefaced look.

So why, if less is more, do men prefer their waitresses all gussied up? My guess would be that it feeds the fantasy. Female waitstaff are often treated like a side of entertainment that comes with your entree. If men expect to view waitresses the same way they view models in a Victoria’s Secret catalog, then of course they’ll place importance on attractiveness and makeup.

Until the day that I can insist to be served by a shirtless Channing Tatum lookalike, I maintain that we should tip all servers based on, you know, actual service and not gender, lipstick, or amount of carefully timed shoulder grazes administered throughout the meal.

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