With nearly three million followers, it’s safe to say that Mario Dedivanovic is the most popular celebrity makeup artist on Instagram. He gained notoriety for his skills working with stars like Kim and Khloe Kardashian, Chrissy Teigen, Shay Mitchell, and Naomie Watts. And now, he passes along his wisdom in sold out Master Classes across the globe. SELF got a preview of the program thanks to Jergens, and he divulged all his best makeup tips and favorite products. Get ready to be schooled.
1. Use a moisturizer to prep face and body for makeup. Moisturizer is key to getting a dewy makeup look because it keeps all the powders you apply to blend into the skin instead of looking cakey. And it’s Dedivanovic’s job to worry about more than just the face of his clients. He also ensures their bodies are glistening and hydrated by using Jergens Hydrating Coconut Lotion ($3, target.com).
2. Use concealer and pressed powder as an eyeshadow primer. There are plenty of amazing eyeshadow primers in the beauty aisle, but Dedivanovic prefers to use an old-school trick to keep makeup from sliding. He minimizes discoloration with concealer like the Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer ($29, sephora.com), then he tops it with translucent powder.
3. Layer your eyeliner. Dedivanovic uses about five layers of eyeliner, whether he’s prepping a model for an editorial photo shoot or doing makeup for a celebrity red carpet—and we’re not exaggerating. First, he uses a brown pencil (Kyliner is a favorite), which he smudges with a makeup brush.
Next, he adds a thinner layer of black pencil right on top but a little closer to the lash line. More smudging. He uses an inky black formula to tightline inside the waterline on both top and bottom. Then, he uses a colored or metallic liner on the bottom lids to add a bit of sparkle. And finally, he finishes off with a liquid liner on top.
This technique means you never have to worry about liner looking see-through or spotty. And if you can’t quite commit to all the steps, layering black and brown on the top lid is a less involved strategy for everyday glam.
4. Lean your elbow on the counter to get a flawless cat eye. Dedivanovic has gotten a lot of practice using liquid eyeliner on his clients. But he does have a tip for getting the perfect wing at home. The secret: a steady hand. Impossible, right? To get rid of any tremors or shakes, lean your elbow against the bathroom counter.
5. Avoid Instagram brows by only filling in the ends. Dedivanovic is proclaiming that boxy Instagram brows are over. Instead, it’s about enhancing the natural shape of the brow. His uses a pencil to fill in the ends of brows, while leaving the inner corners mainly untouched. Make sure to brush hairs up and down with a spoolie to see which spots need the most attention. Then, he adds a layer of dark shadow to give the brows fullness. And finally, he finishes up with a brow gel.
6. Use the sandbagging technique. Sandbagging is the technique Dedivanovic uses to eliminate creasing of concealer. He uses a Beautyblender sponge ($20, sephora.com) to dab Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder ($38, lauramercier.com) right over makeup. Then, he lets it sit while he finishes the eye makeup.
7. Reverse contour on darker skin tones. For darker skin tones, Dedivanovic uses colors from a Bill Nye Palette to contour. But sometimes, he skips the dark powder altogether and selects a lighter shade of foundation to reverse contour. For this technique, he applies a highlighting color on the jaw underneath where the normal contour would go to get a similar effect.
On the opposite side of the spectrum, a contour on very fair skin can look overdone if the shade is too dark. Look for a powder with taupe tones rather than a bronzer. And finish the look off with a peachy blush like Too Faced Love Flush Blush ($26, toofaced.com).
8. Scrub the lips with a toothbrush before applying liquid lipstick. Surprisingly, Dedivanovic is not a fan of the new liquid lipstick trend. But sometimes he uses liquid to get a velvety appearance on photo shoots. To avoid a cracked finish, he scrubs lips with a toothbrush before applying any product.
9. Use a puff to apply powder as a finishing touch. When it comes to getting your makeup look to last, use a puff instead of a powder brush. This old-school beauty tool presses the powder into the face, minimizing the appearance of shine. It’s his favorite trick before sending his celebrity clients off to the red carpet. He also adds a spritz of MAC Prep+Prime Fix+ ($23, macys.com).
10. Clean makeup brushes with baby shampoo and tea tree oil. Dedivanovic has a lot of makeup brushes, and as a celebrity makeup artist he has to wash them between every client. He uses Johnson’s baby shampoo ($4, target.com) mixed with a few drops of tea tree oil to disinfect his tools.