behind the look

Cat Parnell

Hair & Make-up Artist

Jun 2020

Dr.Lipp talks to the gorgeous Cat Parnell about all things beauty, best makeup advice and so much more! 

We really like this look you did for Fashot London! Can you tell us more about the chosen look? 

Firstly, Thank you so much! I’m so pleased you love it as much as I loved creating it. We were shooting a fashion story that celebrated women in hijabs and I wanted to create a look that showed how strong and beautiful Ashaa is. It was all about complimentary colours for her gorgeous skin tone and a warm glow.

What products did you use to create the look?

I predominantly used Tom Ford Beauty products in this look. Some of my key products were: Complexion Enhancing Primer in Peach Glow, Traceless Foundation Stick in Warm Almond, Concealing pen in Sienna, Cream colour for eyes in Platinum, Eye Quad in Golden Mink and Cocoa Mirage, Fiber Brow Gel in Espresso & Shade and Illuminade in Shade 2

Any tips for anyone at home wanting to recreate a similar look?

If you are looking for a really sun kissed golden glow, I would suggest prepping your skin really well first. The key to great skin is always in the prep! You could try using a sheet mask an hour or so before you start your make-up so it has time to settle into the skin. Use a hydrating moisturiser or primer. Complexion enhancing primers are fantastic for starting that initial glow. For the eyes, a really soft blurred out smokey eye is all about taking your time to build it up. Don’t start with the darkest shades. Build up gradually. Adding in pops of metallic or luminous shadows in the centre of the lid creates an illusion of bigger eyes too so that’s a great tip if you want to make your eyes look bigger. Not forgetting lips, prep with Dr Lipp at the beginning of application so when it comes to applying lip liner and lip stick your clients lips will be smooth and supple!

I love how moisturising Dr.Lipp is, it seriously works. It’s such a great multi-use product. I like to use it of course as a lip balm but you can also mix it with a pigment to create a balm style hybrid or whatever you like! It’s also 100% natural which I love and they don’t test on animals!

What would you say your signature beauty look is?

I am all about that soft, natural glow. Great skin, perfectly groomed brows, plump lips, pops of colour on the cheeks for that healthy flush that looks so inviting on the skin. I just adore skin and natural beauty. Natural make-up doesn’t mean no make-up. It’s allowing yourself to build up gradually with light touches, finessing small details.

Do you use cruelty-free beauty products in your kit?

I do, I am trying to phase out parts of my kit that aren’t but I am using them up in the meantime as throwing it away would be wasteful. I think it’s important to understand the importance and impact we have on our environment and on animals when purchasing products.

What can we all do to be a little bit more green or ethical as a make-up artist?

There can be quite a lot of plastic in our kits unnecessarily and now there are great alternative options. Such as sustainable cotton buds instead of plastic ones. Similar to this, you can get disposable bamboo mascara wands. There are quite a few zero waste make-up companies now too that are worth checking out. RMS and Tata Harper are a couple of my favourites for that.

What would you be doing if you were not a makeup artist?

I have always had a huge interest in criminal investigation. I grew up watching all kinds of detective shows with my mum and I thought it was so interesting tracking down evidence and piecing together crimes to help people. It’s a little bit different to a make-up artist! Also the only books I’ll read are generally crime dramas or detective novels.

Jun 2020
Jun 2020

What items should everyone have in their kit?

That’s a tough one but a few of my staples would have to be; Chanel Soleil Tan de Chanel, Bobbi Brown Pot Rouge, Inglot Gel Liner, La Mer Renewal Oil, Tom Ford Color Quad Eyeshadows, Marc Jacobs Dew Drops Highlighter, and of course, Dr.Lipp Lip Balm to prep the lips for the perfect lip application!

Who is your dream client?

I would adore to shoot some beauty for Chanel, that would be the dream! I love classic and clean beauty. Sharp and precise make-up that looks effortless, and they do it perfectly.

Do you have any career highlights so far?

I have shot a few times with La Mer and they are a seriously amazing client to work with. Not only are their products amazing, but they are all about perfect and healthy glowing skin which is what I love to do most.

What is a day in the life like for you?

I would say 80% of my working life is on shoots, the rest will be red carpet, events or private clients. On set I tend to arrive around 8am-9am and finish around 6pm. It’s usually always a busy day, setting up my station ensuring it’s always spotless, clean and organised. Then I would get the model or client into hair and make-up for the first couple hours then doing checks with lighting to see how the make-up looks on camera. I then will be doing checks on set throughout the day to ensure everything looks perfect all day. It’s a great job if you like to keep active that’s for sure! 😊

What is the best piece of beauty advice you ever received and what is the best piece you could give?

The advice I would give is know when to take a step back and stop. I will always remember getting that advice. It’s so important to know when to say “no, I don’t need that extra bit of blush or lip” etc so it doesn’t overwhelm the look. Take time in your application to step back or look in the mirror and appreciate your work and really analyse if you NEED that extra product you are about to apply. Take your time.  A piece of advice I was given when I was really new in the industry was if you are given a job and you aren’t feeling confident about whether you can do it, just say YES and do the job! You’ll always surprise yourself and it’ll push yourself out of your comfort zone so that the next time someone asked you to do something similar you’ll jump at the chance and know you’ll do an amazing job!