On-Camera Makeup

Update: October, 2013– Smashbox is discontinuing its High Definition Healthy FX Foundation. In its place, they are offering their Liquid Halo HD Foundation SPF 15.

Koh Gen Do also offers a newer HD makeup: Aqua Foundation SPF 15.  It comes in a jar whereas their Moisture Foundation comes in a red tube. Both are $62.00.

When I first started out in TV news, a makeup artist told me, “If you feel comfortable walking down the street with the amount of makeup you have on, you aren’t wearing enough to be on-camera.” (She knew that I was a girl who went for a natural look in my everyday life.)

Even with the advent of High Definition Television that still holds true BUT now you need to make sure your foundation melts into your skin. Otherwise we’ll really see every imperfection. In other words, the days of heavy and/or pancake makeup are over. Or they should be if you want to look your best on-camera.

HD Makeup

For years, I have recommended that clients go into MAC stores and ask artists to help them purchase on-camera makeup. Lately, I haven’t had great customer service experiences with MAC, so I hesitate to wholeheartedly recommend them. But you can still meet great MAC makeup artists who will help you at their stores.

If you’re doing this on your own, there are two HD liquid foundations that I recommend.

My hands down favorite, especially if you have sensitive skin, is Koh Gen Doh’s Moisture Foundation. A Hollywood makeup artist introduced me to it at the end of the summer. It melts into your skin and a little goes a long way. Plus my sensitive skin LOVES it. You can find it online at Sephora or on Koh Gen Doh’s website. You might also try contacting Koh Gen Doh’s delightful customer service reps. When I emailed them about shades, they offered to send out samples that helped me choose the best one for me.

My second favorite HD makeup is Smashbox’s High Definition Healthy FX Foundation with SPF 15. This also melts into your skin with a wide range of shades. It goes on best when applied after Smashbox’s Photofinish Foundation Primer. You can find both at Ulta, Sephora or on Smashbox’s website.

In Case You Missed It

Here’s our blog post on men’s on-camera makeup.

And if you want to learn more tips, check out our other on-camera blogs.


If you would like more information about our media training or on-camera coaching offerings, please contact us.

Ways to Work With Us

While we are based in Chicago, we often travel to both coasts– as well as everything in between– to work with our executive clients. We also offer online coaching for those that prefer to work with us remotely.

Coaching You To Be On Message…. On-Air, In-Person and Online.”