A step by step guide on how to get Bollywood glamorous, with tips from Mickey Contractor, M.A.C Director of Artistry, India

Mickey Contractor, one of Bollywood's top makeup artists, has seen makeup in Indian cinema go from the caked matte finish and heavy eyes and lips of the 1980s to the current look of natural-looking skin and a range of color palettes. He is the face behind many wonderful pictures of Aishwarya Rai, Kajol and other bollywood queens. This look combine textures such as matte, gloss, shimmer and sheer for gorgeous glamor.


-The base is the most important factor in red carpet make-up. Mickey recommends, Prescriptives Traceless Skin Responsive Tint in a Level 4 for Indian skin, as it neutralizes imperfections and evens out the complexion.

-After foundation apply concealer, such as Yves Saint Laurent Touche Eclat, to disguise any blemishes

-Apply a translucent powder such as Chanel’s Poudre Universelle Libre over the top of the skin, concentrating on any shiny areas, such as the forehead or nose.


-The eyes are the most important feature in Bollywood and for most Indians, in general. Dark colors such as carbon and burgundy (M.A.C’s Beauty Marked eye shadow for the sparkle) work well with Indian skin tones. “I apply a hint of a darker shade at the end of the eye and blend into the other color. This technique gives extra dimension to the eye and really makes it stand out” says top Bollywood make-up artist Mickey Contractor.

-Eyeliner is also crucial. Line the entire eye with kohl – inside and outside both lash lines.

- “I recommend all women curl their lashes no matter what the occasion,” says Contractor. Then apply one coat of mascara, allow it to dry and apply more until you reached the desired effect (Contractor recommends three coats). L’Oréals’ Double Extension Waterproof Mascara with help add volume to lashes and will stay put all night.

-Eyebrows should be pronounced, so run a light brown powder or an eye shadow over the brows (Try Bobbi Brown’s eye shadows in smoke or mahogany).


-Choose a blush similar to your skin tone and use as a base over the whole cheek. “Then use a warmer blush color over the tops and buff them together into the foundation – it gives a natural-looking lovely glow. Colors in peach and coral look great on Indian women.” Try Pout’s Coral Nymph/Bronze Siren cream cheek duo (This brand has been discontinued).


- “When there’s so much focus on the eyes, I like to play down lips and go for nude, lighter colors; I recommend going for colors that match your natural lip color”.


- Make sure you think about the skin that’s on display, the neck, arms and chest should glow. “M.A.C’s Face and Body Foundation is perfect for this – it’s water-based so works on all skin types and water-resistant so it won’t streak if you sweat.”

Now that we have the expert's secrets, its time for us to try them out ;)


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