If you’ve done your share of Zoom meetings, virtual happy hours or even digital first dates in recent months, then you’ll already know that the webcam on your computer is not exactly forgiving.
And by ‘not exactly forgiving’, we mean you could have a face like a slab of Grecian marble and it would still turn you into a potato with enlarged pores and three chins. Hey, we don’t make the rules.
That doesn’t mean you have to take it lying down. We asked Maria Comparetto, who spends her days getting celebrities like Stormzy, Taron Egerton and John Boyega camera-ready, what a guy can do to look as good on the internet as they do in person. From hiding spots to sorting shine, these are her top eight tips.
Step 1: Prep The Skin
“Proper preparation is essential for giving the appearance of good skin on camera. Before applying any products, shave if you need to – using the right technique to avoid irritation – and use a scrub to exfoliate. Both of these processes help to get rid of dead cells that contribute to a dull, grey complexion and provide a clean canvas for everything that follows.”
Step 2: Feed The Skin
“To look your best, feed your skin according to its type. Dry, flaky skin may need a drop of facial oil. Sensitive skin will need a richer, calming moisturiser. Sallow skin can benefit from a brightening primer. On older skin, use an anti-ageing serum and moisturiser. And if you have oily skin, apply a mattifying moisturiser that is non-greasy.”
Step 3: Colour Correct
“If you have problem-free skin, keep it simple and skip to step four. If, however, you have an uneven skin tone, use colour sticks to balance it out and hide any irregularities. Green is one of the most popular, as this can be used to hide redness and angry spots. Apply lightly and only where necessary to moisturised skin, taking time to blend it in.”
Step 4: Keep It Simple
“When it comes to male clients, the aim is to make it look like they have a naturally clear complexion. On problem-free skin, just apply a BB cream or tinted moisturiser and a little concealer to areas where you need it. A lighter alternative to foundation, BB creams are great for those in need of a little colour boost, and are less detectable on camera.”
Step 5: Target Trouble Spots
“If there’s one make-up product every guy should own, it’s concealer. Apply a quick touch-up to dark circles around the eyes and blemishes to look instantly better. Don’t worry about brushes and sponges, your ring finger is all you need to dab and blend the product onto the skin. Keep any application light and use a product that doesn’t require any powder to set it.”
Step 6: Reduce Shine
“Men’s skin is generally oilier than women’s, but there are several ways you can reduce shine before a video call. One of the quickest and easiest ways is with a blotting sheet, which will soak up any excess sebum. A transparent mattifying cream also works or, if you’re confident using make-up, opt for a dusting of loose powder across the T-zone with a large brush to keep the application light.”
Step 7: Pick Your Position
“Just like on a photoshoot, lighting is crucial. Aim to sit in front of a window, facing it directly if possible. This might sound like it would be too harsh, but the natural light is diffused through the glass, making it the most flattering. Angles are important also. Make sure the camera is as level with your eye line as possible and not too close to your face."
Step 8: Don’t Overlook The Details
“With your face front and centre, the small details make a big difference. One of the most commonly overlooked features on men is lips. If they’re dry, use a toothbrush to slough away any dead skin cells then follow up with a matte lip balm. This will make your lips look hydrated, and your face appear fresher.”