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On Camera Make Up Tips For Men - How To Look And Feel Your Best

Learn what you need to do before you go on camera and how to use makeup indoors and outside plus some tips to make your skin look it's best. You can listen to episode 31 of Camera Ready With Val Brown here:

To use makeup or not to use makeup on video - that is the question... 

At least it’s one I get asked A LOT.

And my answer is: how you show up on camera is more than what you are wearing, your hair and your makeup

In this post and next week's post I am going to share my Emmy award winning secrets about makeup and hair for video I learned over three decades producing television.


During that time, I've applied makeup for hundreds and hundreds of people from all walks of life.  

Most of them had one thing in common. They didn't know how makeup could help them look their best on camera. 

And I saw the same challenges over and over.

People would show up looking washed out, shiny or fatigued or wearing way too much makeup or they didn’t shave or their hair wasn't ready for primetime. 

Something I learned pretty early on as a producer who didn't always have access to makeup team, was they just didn't know what they could do to look better.

What I really wanted was to help them look their best. So I started doing research and watched the pros and learned how to apply makeup for video so I could help my on camera guests feel confident they looked their very best.

It was actually pretty amusing to watch lots of burly guys say "no way" to make up. When I explained to them what the lights and cameras could do to make them not look good, it was amazing how fast they said yes!

And that’s why I’m sharing these tips here today, I want you to know what you can do to make sure you look your best on video, every time.

Video is here to stay, so the more you know about how to show up looking your best, the easier it will be for you to feel confident and comfortable in front of the camera.

When I started to prepare for this week's blog, I was going to create a single post on topic of makeup for video for men and women.  

When I got into it, I realized there was so much I wanted to share for both men and women, the only way to do it justice was to create two separate posts and provide tips you can both use.

This post is part one of two where I share makeup tips for men and next week I'll cover makeup for women.

Before You Ladies Decide To Quit Reading...

There's plenty of good advice that you can use in this post too! 

Lots of what I share here applies to everyone and you'll learn best practices for men so you can help that special person in your life when they are doing video.


Here's what you'll learn in this post:

  • the importance of lifestyle on how you show up on camera

  • things to consider about your hair and hair color 

  • makeup tips for indoors and outdoors

I also included some affiliate links to a few products I mention if you want to check them out as a starting place so you can research for your preferences and needs. 

So if you’re ready, let dive in.

What I want to go over today is more than make up. I also want to include some things you can do as part of your lifestyle to look great on camera period, and this is for men and women.

I’m going to start here because it’s the foundation to looking good on camera. And

because there are certain things makeup just can’t cover up. If you take good care of yourself, it will show on camera. You’ll exude health and a natural glow that makeup just can’t create.

I’ll keep the list pretty short and if you want more, you can download my makeup guide at the end of this post.

First and foremost, nothing can make you look better than a good night’s sleep. If you know you are going to be shooting videos, make sure you get plenty of rest in the nights before you are shooting. It will show.

Everyone has their own rituals for making sure they get a good night’s sleep, and there’s some simple things you can do like:

  • Avoid alcohol. Not only does it make it tough to get a good night’s sleep, it will make your face puffy, not a a good look

  • Avoid salty foods. That olive and cheese pizza may sound tasty, but you’ll be wearing it in the form of a puffy face in the morning.

  • In general, eat a healthy diet with lots of dark greens and avoid caffeine when possible. I love my coffee as much as the next person, however, too much of a good thing will dry out your skin which causes wrinkles. Everything in moderation.

  • Drink plenty of water ahead of time.

Drinking water all at once does not make up for days of dehydration. I like to pour a big pitcher of water in the morning and another one at noon. When I’ve emptied them both, I know I’ve had enough. I can also tell when I’m dehydrated because I either feel tired or hungry, even when I’ve already eaten.

A couple of other things you can do to make sure your skin looks great is to use an egg white mask to tighten your skin. Just use the white of an egg and put it on your face, don’t get it too close to your eyes because it's too drying and leave it on for 20 minutes and rinse it off with cool water. It really will give your skin a lift.

The other trick I swear by for reducing puffy eyes or dark circles is grating a cucumber and making an eye mask. Don’t just use the slices because they don’t get into the contours under your eyes. Cheesecloth is ideal, but since most of us don’t keep that in the house, just use a paper towel and roll the cucumber up like a burrito and put it over your eyes for 15 minutes. I usually flip it over at the halfway point to get all the benefits from the cucumber while it’s fresh.

The other plus from taking time to do this is you can quietly review what you are going to say and imagine yourself on camera, enthusiastic and confident, sharing your message. If you don’t have a cucumber, you can use teabags you’ve put in the refrigerator in water overnight, I usually use green tea bags. This is a great way to refresh your eyes, especially if you’ve been in front of the computer a lot.

You can also do a gentle skin scrub the night before which will add a healthy glow, just don’t scrub too hard or you’ll make your skin red.

There are also other treatments out there that will tighten the skin under your eyes temporarily and they can be effective - I have worked with makeup artists who swear by Preparation H. A word of caution though. If you use them on a continuous basis, you can actually damage the skin under your eyes because of the constant contracting and drying out of this delicate skin. Then you will make your bags even worse.

Always use a moisturizer, whether you are on camera or not. It will keep your skin looking fresh and reduce the appearance of wrinkles. I shared this tip with a friend one time and his skin was looking so good and people were telling him how young he looked his wife was pretty annoyed with him ;0)

There are lots of great products out there, Clinique has some great combo moisturizers for men with built in sunblock that work well and Neutrogena has some tinted moisturizers with sun block too in various different shades you can check out at your local drugstore. It’s great if you