So, due to Arlene being away and hibernating in the country last week I thought I’d take over and write about “being my mother’s daughter” as I’m so often asked what it’s like being related and working together, and how I create Arlene’s ‘look’.
Growing up in the shadow of someone so successful has been a somewhat daunting experience, but ultimately it has made me a really driven person, which is great when it comes to work ethic as I don’t know anyone who works harder than Arlene.
I got into doing makeup about 5 years ago after giving up a career in Musical Theatre – yes of course being the daughter of Arlene Phillips, dance was always going to be the main influence in my life – but it wasn’t until quite recently when Mum felt I was really good enough that we started working together as much as we do.
It’s funny as when we’re out and about as a family and Mum is in her usual get up of casual clothes, no makeup, hair in a clip, she usually get’s something like “Oh you look just like that Arlene Phillips”, but should we be on our way out or if we’ve just finished a shoot and she’s in hair and makeup – the reaction is quite unbelievable. She must get stopped every 5 paces by someone telling her how much they miss her on Strictly, or what does she think of the show this year. I can’t imagine what it must be like being so recognisable from one show, which in reality was such a small part of what she did throughout the year anyway. Of course it’s so lovely to know people still miss her and the support she received from the public was and still is amazing – but it must be hard as well to always be reminded.
Anyway, working as Arlene’s makeup artist is the same as any family business, you try and leave personal feelings at the door, but of course there are always going to be those days when one of you is in a bad mood and that personal connection just sneaks through and we can’t help but take it out on each other, although on the plus side she always makes sure I have nice food and I get from A-B, definitely the perks of the job!
Arlene looks amazing for her age that we all can agree on, but a good diet and great skincare routine certainly help and make my job as a makeup artist that much easier as I have a great canvas to work from. I always use a makeup primer to start with as that holds the foundation in place and helps create that flawless look. Arlene likes the Dr Murad Oil Control Mattifier and the Perfecting Serum to protect the skin and prevent any oiliness, and then the Laura Mercier foundation primer – and that’s before we’ve got the foundation on, of which she loves the Armani brand, available in Selfridges.
I always have the Urban Decay ‘Naked’ eyeshadow palette with me, a great range of golds, browns and greys perfect do the simple smokey eye look Arlene has, and also the Urban Decay brand is cruelty free, something Arlene and I are very aware of when it comes to cosmetics. Boujoirs smokey effect black eyeliner inside the eye, and lots of Rimmel Grow Lash black mascara complete the effect, and then I finish with a translucent blot power and plenty of Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick to bring out her amazing cheekbones and voila!
For anymore tips and tricks, or if you see Arlene on a particular show and want to know how I created the look please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll answer all your questions on how I did it.
To sum up, working with my Mum is a dream come true, and I hope to continue to do so for many more years to come.
Arlene will be back next week with all the gossip, so until then…
Love Alana x