Celebrity Makeup Artist’s Beauty Secrets - QC Makeup Academy

Celebrity makeup artist, Nathan Johnson (@nathanwalnut), is QC Makeup Academy’s Executive Makeup Artist and is based in New York City. This month, he shares some of his treasured beauty secrets!

One of the greatest attributes any professional artist can have is a lifelong desire to learn and grow. There are so many tips, tricks, and secrets to uncover—and just when we think you’ve have uncovered them all—more pop up. It’s amazing right?

Today, I want to share with you some of my favorite little secrets. They may seem simple and obvious, but it’s amazing how many people don’t know these basic quick fixes.


Brows are slow to grow; so over-plucked, incorrectly plucked, or generally sparse brows can be an issue that someone has to live with for a long time. Waiting for them to grow back can take months or years—and sometimes they don’t come back at all.

Here comes the power of powders and pencils to cover thin and sparse spots. The most important step is color choice. To make a brow look like it is naturally full and perfect, choose a color that is slightly around 1 to 2 shades lighter than your own hair color. However, if your client has white blond hair, choose a shade slightly darker.

The second step is shape. If you have questions about perfect shape—refer to unit B in the Master Makeup Artistry Course or the brow section of the Pro Makeup Workshop.

Lastly, as for technique, with a light hand, stroke the color by following the direction of hair growth, as if you were laying in hairs. Keep going until the brow is perfectly shaped and natural looking.

YouTube and Instagram are currently trending on overdrawn, specific brows that ombre in color. Don’t fall into the trap of believing these are classic techniques. They are specific and often jarring. The brows should not be the focal point of the face, instead they should be a frame to direct focus to the eyes.

Acne Scars

Acne scars are proof of skins troubled history. If you think your only option is to live with them, you’re wrong. Using a firm concealer brush, alternate between thin layers of concealer or foundation and setting powder until each groove is flush with the skin around it.

Alternating the layers with setting powder not only helps to fill the scar, it will also help to keep the product in place all day. My choice is Cover FX’s Total Cover Cream Foundation. With a solid selection of over 30 shades, you will find a color to perfectly match every client.

Dark Circles

Dark circles are bad enough on their own, but they only get worse when you over-cover them. Covering them perfectly is easier, and requires less product than you might think. If you wear foundation, put that on first. Applying concealer second will ensure that you use less and look younger and afterwards.

To cover the dark circles best, I recommend using a color correcting concealer. A salmon or pink/ peach color will be perfect for lighter skin tones. A more orange color corrector would be perfect for darker skin tones. The salmon or orange hues of the color corrector will neutralize the under eye darkness, making them look just like the client’s natural skin color.

Dark circles almost never reach the lash line so there is no need to go that high. They also rarely ring the full lower lash line, so be sure to put the product only where the darkness is. A light touch of concealer from the inner corner of the eye to the center, just above the tear duct, and at the very outer corner of the eye is usually perfect. To keep it in place all day, set it with a light powder.

Final Note

If these aren’t part of your current makeup routine, they should be!

And it’s summer time…if you’ve been procrastinating starting your makeup courses—stop now. You’re the only one who can make your dreams come true.

Wondering what courses and certificates QC offers? Check out this helpful article and launch your makeup career!

Author Nathan Johnson

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