top of page

Top 3 Commercial Friendly Makeup Foundations for TV and Video

If you are a makeup artist, beauty enthusiast, hobbyist, actor or maybe you're just really good interacting on Zoom calls by now, you will notice the way you apply your makeup and the products you use on yourself for everyday wear isn't the same as applying it for camera. So when it comes to commercials or being on camera, you need products with specific characteristics.

These products should:

  • Glide over the skin to create a smooth surface

  • Make the skin look flawless.

  • Keep the skin from looking washed out with all the lights; studio lights, stage lights or your Diva ring light.

  • Eliminate shine. You're saying what? No shine, no highlighter. I know, I know we all love highlighter and we all love to glow! But for commercial productions and most TV appearances, you'll want to eliminate the shine. The camera reads it as sweat and there is no amount of powder that will knock that shine down. So when the director is saying, "Hey, talent is shiny, can you touch them up"? You know it's going to be a very difficult job to eliminate that shine if highlighter is used. Okay, but we're not here to talk about highlighter. We're here to talk about foundations!

All makeup looks start with a good foundation. I consider foundation one of the main secret ingredients to creating flawless looks. This is the very reason I've compiled a list of my top three makeup foundations for different types of skin, the purposes for each and the looks you want to achieve. So from the "I'm not budging" kind to the second skin vibes to full coverage, these foundations will help you create the perfect look on your next video shoot or on yourself.

Now this is ideal for many reasons. One, when you need a fully matte look. Two, you or your talent/client have oily skin. Three, you need a foundation to absolutely last all day either for a long day of commercial shooting or perfect for wedding makeup. Four, you are working against heat, sweat and humidity. And five. . . this one is outside of the box. Keep this in your back pocket should you ever need a waterproof makeup option. Let's say you are working on a commercial shoot. You're reading the script or the producer tells you "Hey, we have an underwater scene". You wait a moment and say "okay". Don't fret, don't get scared. Listen to this!

I actually discovered this by accident. Revlon Colorstay in the combination/oily formula is one of my personal faves that I wear daily. I do have oily skin and especially in the summer with the heat and humidity, it keeps the sweat and shine away. So I put it on one day getting glammed for a business meeting. Meeting ended early and I thought I'll just go to the pool. (I go swimming most days of the week. It is my go-to exercise). I thought nothing of it, didn't take my makeup off just went to the pool for one hour. So, I get home, glanced in the mirror and thought, "Wow" my makeup still looks good. So impressed, I immediately made a note; if I ever have a commercial shoot where the talent was going to be filmed under water or heck, if I had a pool party to go too; use Revlon ColorStay. In this instance, I would also add a heavier setting spray like Barrier Spray on top to seal it all in! By the way, its available in 43 shades:-)

I will shout it from the rooftops that Nars Radiant Longwear is one of my absolute favorites and go-to makeup foundations. This foundation is perfect for creating flawless looks and no makeup makeup looks, which are often requested in commercial production and which many people like on themselves. In addition to it being an excellent choice for on camera, it is perfect for everyday makeup application. It's just the right amount of coverage although buildable as well.

What I like most about the NARS Radiant Longwear is the fact that when it's applied, it not only makes most skin textures look soft and supple but it also makes skin look like skin. This formula by NARS gives off the "I look totally polished but natural" vibes! And for me specifically, my clients, the commercial industry I work in, people love to look like themselves but "pulled together and polished". Another characteristic of this formula; it's not matte, it's not dewey, but it gives the appearance of nicely hydrated skin. Available in 34 shades.

The top 3 is rounded out by Cinema Secrets Ultimate Foundation. It is a secret you must explore. This brand is definitely geared more towards professional makeup artists and the industry rather than makeup hobbyists and consumers. You won't find fancy packaging here and you won't find it in department stores or retail outlets like Sephora. (However you will find their amazing makeup brush cleaner, but not the ultimate foundation). Do not let this deter you! This foundation is perfect for anyone who is on camera.

Make it a staple in your kit or makeup bag for these reasons.

  • The color range is awesome and if you cannot find a color that works, they are so easy to mix (30 shades available)

  • It can be used as a concealer or foundation.

  • It's easily applicable as a sheer coverage when used with a damp sponge or a spurt of setting spray on your makeup brush.

  • Definitely applicable for a full coverage look. Just be sure to set with a translucent powder.

  • Available in singles or palettes. The palettes are my favorite as they are easy to pop in my set bag for any touchups needed on set.

The Cinema Secrets Ultimate Foundation is also like a second skin. Best way to describe it. . . It has more oomph than the NARS Radiant Longwear. It's creamy, whereas the NARS is more of a liquid. The Cinema Secrets is not matte, it's not dewey, but it's more dewey than the NARS. Okay, that was like a math problem or a nursery rhyme! I'm still not sure, but let me repeat that. The Cinema Secrets Ultimate Foundation is not matte and it's not dewey, but it's more dewey than the NARS. So it's perfect for photo shoots where the highlighters, the glow and the shimmery products look gorgeous. It's also good for video projects, just requires slightly more maintenance for the video shoots to keep that shine away.

Having the right foundation is essential for your projects and if you are going to be on camera for any reason, but there are so many options out there, it can be overwhelming. I've narrowed down picks of my top three foundations for you. You will find these not only in my commercial kit but personal everyday makeup stash as well. Use these makeup foundations to create flawless looks that last all day from the Revlon Color Stay to the NARS Radiant Longwear to the Cinema Secrets Ultimate Foundation. So no matter what look you're going for, you're sure to find something perfect for your next shoot, next appearance or next pool party!





 On-the-Set-Styling-hey there-blog-orange-2.png

I'm Cristy Guy

I'm a freelance commercial makeup artist & wardrobe stylist who has gone from the farm to NFL football fields and beyond working across the pond too! I love makeup & kits, the beach, a good top knot and pro football. I'm here to help you work with A-List clients and navigate the commercial, TV and film makeup industries.


As they say, "a good system is the shortest way to the goal!" Check out "The Collect Your Work Calendar".

I'm obsessed with makeup kits and this is my fave by far!

It's photo and video friendly. Makes skin look like skin & flawless!

Receive bi-weekly makeup career tips, tricks & direct from the set info focused on helping you work with A-List clients & navigate the commercial, TV and film makeup industries.

Thanks for subscribing!

  • Instagram
  • Facebook
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
bottom of page