As far as makeup legends go, Sir John is as big as it gets. In addition to being an industry vet and L’Oreal Paris brand ambassador he’s queen Beyoncé’s go-to makeup artist — yes really! And if that wasn’t enough, he’s now added TV to his very long resume — he serves as mentor for contestants on the new Lifetime beauty competition series, American Beauty Star.
Last week Sir John stopped by the ESSENCE office to chat filming a TV show, his advice for aspiring makeup artists (it’s super practical and very real!) and of course fall’s hottest makeup trend: metallic eyes.
Sir John’s tips for aspiring makeup artists?
1. Stay a Student
“My advice for anyone in the beauty industry, despite your level of expertise, is to stay a student. Even though I’ve done a few cool things in my life, I’m still learning and soaking up information from the generation behind me, and the generation before me.”
2. Go to Museums!
“If you want to be a makeup artist don’t follow other makeup artists, go to musuems. When you have a broader knowledge of what paints can do, you can bring your clients different references, then you become indispensable! Don’t only look to YouTubers for inspiration.”
3. Your Clients Are Not Your Friends
“You’re going to have celebrity clients and they make ask you to dinner. But that’s not your friend, that’s your client. So when you see me with my clients yeah I love them, and I care about them, but I have a clear distinction. Having that distance, and not letting your client see you get drunk or turn-up, is the key to professionalism.”
Watch Sir John do fall’s hottest eye trend: metallic eyes.