Dear Caroline

IF you read my column last week you’d know I’d been working with the talented body painting make-up artist Joanne Gair in London and Madrid.

Your exclusive beauty and grooming tips from MAC cosmetics’ senior make-up artist, Sunderland-born Caroline Donnelly.

IF you read my column last week you’d know I’d been working with the talented body painting make-up artist Joanne Gair in London and Madrid. She was presenting a masterclass of her work and signing her new book Body Painting, Masterpieces to invited MAC guests.

As there were three examples of her work, there were three teams to do the work. I was heading up one team with my talented colleague Carly, who won last year’s body painting world championships.

The design we were to reproduce was called Pipe and Texture. Our model was presented in front of a set which looked like a boiler room with water pipes and wooden panels, etc.

The idea was for us to paint our model into the design so that the viewer didn’t notice him right away.

We began by adding MAC Pro ( products to the set to have continuity of colour while presenting our model. He was really friendly and patient and didn’t moan once that we had sent him off for a body wax to make sure his body hair wouldn’t interfere with our designs. A lot of men would have moaned about that!

We began by removing all the natural oils from his skin then mixed up clay with water and applied randomly to his body to give a rough texture. Once this was done we used mixtures of browns, blues, black and green Chroma Cakes (MAC body paint) to his skin and hair, giving the same look as the background.

We applied this loosely and encouraged dribbles to run down the skin to look like the set. As we had used MAC Pro pigments to the walls of the set, we also applied these to areas of the skin. We put him back into our set using our taped markings and began to mark out where the set panels of wood were on his body to camouflage him into the background.

Joanne was very complimentary about our work. I’d love to work with her again. And now, I’m off to do pre-London Fashion Week stuff which officially starts tomorrow. No rest for the wicked!

Q. I was very pleased to receive a MAC brush set for Christmas. I also received some brush cleanser, but don’t know how to use it and my husband can’t remember what the MAC person told him!

A. It’s great that your husband bought you this as it will keep your brushes in great condition for years, sterilised and clean. Bacteria is the evil enemy of brushes and eats through them, greatly reducing the quality.

For a quick and easy clean, apply neat to a tissue and gently run your brush over this. You will see the colour from the make up on the tissue. When you can no longer see this, your brush is clean.

Run a dry tissue over the hair, and push the hair of the brush back into place. Do this weekly. It is also good for you to give your brushes a good, gentle clean with lukewarm water and baby shampoo every few weeks.

Half fill your sink with water and one by one dip your brushes into the water, cleaning with the gentle shampoo. Apply a little conditioner to the fluffier brushes.

Once finished, thoroughly wash your brushes with clean, lukewarm water and run a clean tissue over them pressing the hairs back into shape. Lie brushes down to dry so excess water doesn’t run into the handle.

Questions for Caroline an be emailed to


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