As US teen thriller Pretty Little Liars wraps up a seven-year run on Netflix this month, lead makeup artist Cindy Miguens shares trend-sparking tips with Rachel Marie Walsh.
TV artist Cindy Miguens made her beauty bones on The OC and has inspired a whole new generation of young women via Pretty Little Liars.
As the glamorous drama’s Makeup Department Head, she shaped beauty trends the way Gossip Girl’s Eric Daman did fashion paradigms: To effect upmarket polish and exert feminine power.
Now finished with the series and working on Famous in Love, PLL creator Marlene King’s new show, she shares how she got those lashes so gorgeous, avoiding powder and why it need not cost much to look expensive.
Falsies were always in fashion...
The show’s signature lashes started with individual lash-curling (Cindy used Shu Uemura S Curler 1, €14.20 at www.yesstyle.com) and sets of Ardell False Lashes, from €7.49 at Boots. The false bases were hidden by a layered blend of pencil and liquid liners, extended to feline flicks.
The artist likes Stila Smudge Stick Waterproof Eye Liner, €11.30, and Milani Eye Tech Extreme Vinyl Liquid Liner, €11.80, both at www.beautybay.com
...as was contouring
“Shay Mitchell was our contouring queen,” says Cindy, though the show’s biggest social media star, who has her own line of Smashbox eye palettes, is also partial to gold highlighter.
Try Bobbi Brown Glow Stick, €32, to emulate her glowing cheekbones. Cindy used Bobbi Brown Bronzing Powder, €37, a subtle matte formula, to sculpt Shay’s face.
“Contouring can age you which was tricky when the characters were teenagers. I often used cream-to-powder formulas, as in Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Cream Kit, €50.60 at www.beautybay.com and spent a lot of time blending.”
Little Liars love budget mascara
“I don’t discriminate between luxury and drugstore products, it is all about the quality of a formula.”
Cindy uses a wide variety of mascaras, frequently dipping a fan brush into TooFaced ‘Better Than Sex’ Mascara, €23, to maximise lift and definition. She says PLL’s stars also requested L’Oréal’s volumizing formulas.
Miss Babyroll Volumizing Mascara, €12.95 (above), is the brand’s latest. Pharmacy favourite Physicians Formula also got a lot of on-screen play. The artist likes Physicians Formula Organic Wear 100% Natural Origin Mascara, €14.90.
Prime and blot
“The actresses don’t like to look or feel constantly powdered, so I used a combination of shine-control primers and blotting paper. I also love a naturally dewy look, it makes skin look more three-dimensional on camera, so it is not essential they be completely matte.”
Cindy likes TooFaced Hangover Replenishing Primer, €32, a lovely smoothing option for dry/combination types, and Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer, €38, for normal-to-oily skin.
Feel good about your makeup choices
Emily Fields (Shay Mitchell) often wears elaborate nail art created by Stephanie Stone, whose Instagram and Tumblr feeds display both complex and easy-to-copy designs.
The nail technician’s amazing manicures even seek to raise social and political awareness on occasion, and the Pretty Little Liars beauty team are especially supportive of vegan and organic brands.
Zoya and NCLA Los Angeles, available via www.hollandandbarrett.ie
Cindy is also a big fan of New York vegans Tarte Cosmetics, available via www.QVCUK.com
Nineties-style nudes are sexy in the city
When Hanna Martin (Ashley Benson), the show’s creator-designated ‘hottie’, gets a job with designer Zac Posen in Manhattan, her look goes from smoky eyes and lipgloss to chic nudes and lots of lashes.
Cindy favours Stila ‘Eyes are the Window’ Palette in Soul, €33.40 (below) at www.beautybay.com for nude lids and added a bronze liner, Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Eye Pencil in Scorch, €19.50.
“I kept her skin very natural and fresh with Jouer makeup.”
Jouer Cosmetics Moisturising Tint SPF20, €38 at www.cultbeauty.co.uk suits even very sensitive skin. All the Liars love NARS Blush in Silent Nude (below) which was sadly part of the brand’s 2015 Christopher
Kane collaboration, so discontinued. Cindy recommends Luster or Orgasm both of which are available as the finger blend-friendly NARS Liquid Blush,€30, from this month.
Your own brows are best
‘Power brows’ are a major trend the cast did not spark or stoke, mainly because Cindy prefers to enhance and define.
“Lucy Hale’s brow shape might have worked with that exaggerated look but I do think it looks better in print than on screen. I prefer to make the most of
“Lucy Hale’s brow shape might have worked with that exaggerated look but I do think it looks better in print than on screen. I prefer to make the most of natural features.”
The artist’s favourite episode is Season 4’s ‘Shadow Play,’ for which she gave Spencer Hastings (Troian Bellisario) Hepburn-esque arches. Anastasia Beverly Hills Perfect Brow Pencil, €22.40 at www.beautybay.com made the look.
Chubby sticks are the only lip product you need Cindy loves lip crayons.
“Anything that can line, colour and condition your lips quickly cuts time spent in the makeup chair and is worth keeping in your bag.”
Clinique Chubby Stick Intense Moisturising Lip Colour Balm, €20, in ‘Woppin Watermelon,’ ‘Mega Melon’ and ‘Heapin Hazelnut’ were particular favourites.
Colour-correct dark circles
Amazing Cosmetics Amazing Concealer, €40 at Marks & Spencer, is Cindy’s trace-proof method of colouring blemishes. Its formula is extremely pigmented, so requires minimal application.
”Use an orange-tinted concealer if eye circles are blu-ish or mix a little yellow concealer with your foundation (before doing your base) if they’re purple.”
Cindy draws on a professional Kryolan Dermacolor Cream Camouflage Palette for under-eye cover-ups. This is available in 3-24 colour trays from www.kryolan.com if you are an aspiring artist, but for single shades try Urban Decay Naked Skin Colour Correcting Fluid, €23.
The artist also like to prep the area with de-puffing patches.
Luminous Silk is always golden
Aria Montgomery (Lucy Hale) has a fair complexion that glows no matter how much blood drains from her face, thanks to Giorgio Armani’s Luminous Silk Foundation, €46.50.
When the character progressed five years (from pretty arty-type to book publisher) from Season 6, Cindy warmed the skin with DiorSkin Nude Air Glow Powder, €57, or It Cosmetics ‘Sunshine in a Compact’ Bronzer, €39.80 at www.QVCUK.com
The series finale of Pretty Little Liars is available via Netflix from June 28
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