From finding your signature style to being unique and fearless, Netherlands-based makeup artist Marjolein de Ridder shares a guide on how to create bold makeup looks for MUAs and fashionistas alike.
Model: Marieke Salverda (@mariekesalverda) (Agency: Malou Model Management @Maloumodelmanagement); Photographer: Suzan van Gemeren (@svgmodelphotography); Makeup: Marjolein de Ridder (@marjoleindrmua)
For me, makeup is an art. My work is colorful, I like to approach makeup as a form of art and expression, so that’s what I do with it! I create mostly editorial makeup looks. I think the idea behind editorial makeup, as a type of work, is to be creative, to show your skills, and try new stuff. Editorial allows you to think outside of the box. And that’s what I recommend for you, to have fun with makeup!
I have been a makeup artist since 2014. Although I don’t pursue it as a full-time job, but it’s my passion as I found much joy in this! As far as formal education goes, I have done a makeup course. But honestly I learned nothing there. I watched a lot of YouTube videos and did practiced a lot on myself and then later did a lot of networking with models!
How to Create Bold Makeup Looks
Avant-garde makeup is experimental and innovative, and it’s not just for magazine editorials or runway. Even your own makeup look can be as unique, as creative as you want it to be. So here are some tips on how to go with the flow, and create fearless beauty looks. No thinking, just right in the moment, that’s where the magic happens.
1. Know your products.
The first step to getting makeup right is to understand different products and try to find how they work together. Invest in a good makeup kit and tools. Embryolisse is something I always bring with me, I love my Face Atelier foundation, gives the most beautiful finish and photographs amazing! Also I love Mykitco organizer sets and buddies! They make your kit so organized!
2. Don’t limit yourself with products.
Lipstick can also be used as blush, for example.
3. Know the color wheel.
Knowing the basics of colors can make you confident about using and mixing them. If you know color theory, you can break a lot of rules and it will still look great.
4. Find balance in your look.
Your skin, lips and eyes can balance each other in a makeup look. If you decide to go wild with the eyes, try to balance it out with fresh skin and lips. And if you are bold enough to wear both, make sure it goes well together so the whole makeup looks ‘complete’.
For example, a quick makeup for a party or date can be natural eye with a fun lip. Or go a bit heavier on the eyes and keep the lips and skin nice and glowy. Again lipstick can also be used as blush, so keep it in your purse. 😉
5. Don’t limit yourself with the rules.
Rules block all creativity. I feel that all rules can be broken if you just know how!
6. Don’t be afraid to try new colors or embellishments.
Try unique color combinations, have fun with colors. Personally, I love to work with a lot of colors, so making them work together is a fun process! In fact, try new shapes, textures, patterns or even items to create your look. You don’t have to have a set “everyday style” – feel free to change it up as you please! Play with hair and nails to extend your makeup look.
7. Use editorials as inspiration for avant-garde makeup.
You can get much inspiration from editorial looks and fashion week. Fashion shows really are fun to look at in general, and I would recommend that you can follow any of them. One can also follow celebrity makeup artists on Instagram or Youtube to get inspired. Personally, I love Lisa Eldridge!
When you hear the term editorial makeup, we usually think runways, unique bridal styles or magazine editorials. But avant garde makeup still relevant to other makeup artists and even the average fashionista. I think avant garde is all about being creative. So use edgy stuff to spice up your outfit, or make a weird shape of eyeliner to go with your outfit! You can say a lot with simple things!
How to know what suits your face? Figure out your face shape and go with that! Luckily, YouTube and the internet is one big makeup bible! Play with it!
8. You don’t have to please anyone but yourself.
Fashion is an ‘expression’ above all. Do things from the heart, not because something is popular on Instagram: Likes don’t define your artistry. All the recognition on social media is nice, but I see so much similar work that it all looks the same now. This can be very boring as an artist and it doesn’t challenge you at all. At the end of the day, it is just makeup – one should have fun with the art and if it doesn’t work it can be removed. 😉
9. Find your own subconscious connection with the makeup process.
I always feel like every artist has his or her own signature, which can’t be copied, just like your handwriting. Try to figure out who you are as an artist and what gives you joy. If you figure that out, you can manage to become one with it. Then, makeup won’t be something you have to think about anymore but you just do it, and your model will be your muse! When you reach that stage, you make magic!
So how do you find your “signature style” based on your personality? The most important that it is something you feel like suits you as a person. If you like colorful things you will be drawn to that! The best thing I love about creating makeup looks is that I can speak from the heart with my work! My work really showcases my personality – colourful and edgy!
10. Try to find your inspiration anywhere, not just through other makeup looks.
If you can’t think any new ideas, sometimes a break can do wonders. Take a walk in nature, look up to the sky and let colors inspire you! Personally, nature in all kind of forms inspires me, like sunsets, flowers, insects, birds. I love those!
11. Don’t be afraid to mess up your look.
Standing out in the crowd through makeup can be really difficult in these times, since you can get lost a bit in the sea of all those creators. But just stick with your vision and style. In the end people will recognize it as your work, and that is the biggest goal you can achieve as an artist!
The process of my work is very fluid and I let every look direct it. It takes me 10 minutes to do a normal look. And editorial looks take 30 minutes on an average. However, I never time my work. I know the direction I want to go, but I let it flow in the process. I am not too worried if I mess it up. That’s the best way to go about creating a new makeup look. Be confident in what you do! And the only way to feel confident wearing bold makeup is to just own it!
The world of makeup is fast-evolving. The practice of wearing bold makeup, by everyone that is, has changed a lot since I started this work. I, too, learned along the way what worked together and what not, but in the end it is still just makeup. If you don’t like the outcome, just take it off!
Based on an interview by Shilpa Ahuja.
Marjolein de Ridder is a makeup artist based in Wormerveer, Netherlands, who creates avant-garde and editorial makeup looks on her Instagram account @marjoleindrmua.
A 34-year old, she describes herself as an artistic mom of two, who lives and breathes art! Makeup is her ultimate passion, even though she doesn’t pursue it as a full-time job. When not creating beauty looks, she likes to Netflix just like everyone else, and also loves to take little walks in the nature, which inspires her art.