Celebrity Makeup Artist Jackie Sanchez Interview with Marta Walsh

Celebrity Makeup Artist Jackie Sanchez does make up for Tyra Banks, Alek Wek and Kimora Lee.

In this interview, Jackie Sanchez talks to Marta Walsh about her first breaks as a makeup artist, makeup philosophy, working with supermodel Alek Wek and tips to getting her look, what can we find in her makeup bag, and future plans.

Jackie Sanchez

Marta Walsh: When did your fascination with makeup begin?
Jackie Sanchez: When I was 10 years old my brother got me a makeup kit called Scandia. It had eyeshadow, blush, lipstick, mascara, the works. I still remember opening that first box full of lipsticks!

MW: How did you get your first big break as a makeup artist?
JS: There are so many exciting times that I can remember. I would have to say working with legendary author Toni Morrison opened many doors for me. Traveling with her, accompanying her on book tours, meeting the television elite such as Katie Couric, Diane Sawyer, and Charlie Rose, has been so exciting.

MW: What is your makeup philosophy?
JS: I definitely believe in “less is more”. If you have nice skin why cover it up with heavy foundation and powder. Makeup should enhance your beauty.

MW: How did you end up doing makeup for Alek Wek and what was it like meeting her?
JS: I was fortunate enough to work with Ebony magazine’s Creative Director Harriette Cole and she assigned me to this project. Alek is the most down to earth, sincere and friendly model I have ever met. So polished and professional.

MW: Which types of makeup looks did Alek Wek tend to go for?
JS: Luckily I was given free reign to choose the “look” for Alek that day. With clothing being primarily black and shot against a gray background I decided to give Alek a pop of color. I used a mixture of navy blue eyeshadow highlighted with cobalt blue on top. I used a spicy burgundy bronzer and a shiny gloss with metallic flecks to balance out the strong blue eye color.

MW: What are some memorable makeup looks you’ve created Alek Wek, how can we achieve these looks at home?
JS: My advice would be to practice, practice, practice with neutrals. When you have your application skills in place then venture on to colors like purple, blue or green which are more difficult to work with.

Alek Wek

MW: Which products are must-haves in your makeup bag?
JS: For starters I always prep the face with Dermalogica skincare products. For foundations I like MAC or Black Opal stick foundations. These are great because you can control the coverage by applying thicker as a concealer or by mixing with moisturizer for a soft finish. For eye and cheek colors I turn to MAC, Smashbox, or NARS which come in a variety of textures and sheens – matte, dewy, pearlescent. I am a true lip gloss junkie and I love them all! My favorite mascara for the last 10 years(!) is L’Oreal Voluminous.

MW: What is the key for achieving long term success and popularity as a makeup artist?
JS: I would have to say being good at what you do but also being able to meet the specific needs of each client. If a client mentions a particular product they are fond of, be sure to have it with you every time you work with them. Be flexible and creative to create looks for different occasions. Makeup is about fun and experimentation…why do the exact same look day after day?

MW: Who would you love to do makeup for in the future?
JS: Such a tough question. I would love to work with Halle Berry, Hugh Jackman, and Estelle for starters.

MW: What’s next for Jackie Sanchez?
JS: Hopefully working behind the scenes with a major cosmetic manufacturer on product development. Also I hope to travel the world with some of my clients

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