Men get made up too, naturally. Every model in a print ad, talking head on television and virtually anyone on the big screen gets a brush to the face. And while the role of the makeup artist might change depending upon the subject, the practice stays the same -- conceal and highlight, prim and style.

Claudia Lake is a busy woman. A ContactNYC makeup artist, Claudia’s work has been seen everywhere from Adidas and Maybelline ads to the glossy pages of GQ and Vogue. She’s stylized cultural icons from Marina Abramović and Paz de la Huerta to LL Cool J and the late Lou Reed. For our photo shoot, Claudia used minimal hues that make one wonder if a subject is even wearing make up. This look is just as taxing as the more creative strokes.

“The biggest challenge of natural makeup is making it look like you have nothing on,” she explains. The difference between looking like you have nothing on and having nothing on is actually quite palpable. 

How does male make-up work?. Image 1.

Claudia Lake



Accomplished makeup artist with 16 years experience in all aspects of media makeup: fashion, video and print.

She attended the Fashion Institute of Technology and Parsons School of Design majoring in Fine Arts.




Conor Messinger


before after



Lauren Mercier concealer, Embryolisse lotion, Makeup Forever HD powder, Lucas Papaw ointment



I am an artist, therefore I always start with a fresh canvas, regardless if the subject is male or female. That means I start with a clean face. I then look at the skin and assess it's needs. Everyone is different. Some have dry skin, some dry patchy skin or oily. Some have sensitive skin with redness. Once I figure that out and ask questions regarding their routine and problems, I clean, tone, exfoliate skin and lips (if needed), moisturize the face and add lip balm and healing balms if needed. I try to use the most natural, gentle products. For Fashion/Editorial jobs, I usually determine the amount based on lighting, clothing and the overall look, feel and story. For TV, it's more straight forward makeup and there needs to be more coverage since the lights are stronger. You wouldn't believe how much make up they used to wear!

For Connor the most important part was toning down the redness. Making sure his skin looks even.





Prince Terrence

Hussle Club

before after



Kiehl's facial fuel, MAC studio fix powder,
Lucas Papaw ointment, MAC studio finish concealer



Terrence the most important part was toning down the shine. And making sure his skin tone was even.

Technology, advancement in makeup, and more variations in colors has allowed us all to find foundations that match our skin tones whereas before everyone was pink, red or grey looking. The age of the pancake makeup tins is over. HD cameras expose any crease, wrinkle, or blemish but thick, unnatural pancake makeup is also obvious through an HD lens. Because of this, the new makeup used is sheer and lighter but still with enough coverage. HD makeup has more reflective qualities and the powders are milled finer to appear less cakey.





Tim Pioppo

Vocalist for The Love Supreme

before after



WELEDA skin food cream, Lauren Mercier concealer, Lucas Papaw ointment, Makeup Forever HD powder



For Tim, his number one issue is under eye circles -- the man works a ton day and night! This wild man's skin needed some love and affection. I cleansed his face with a gentle cleanser, moisturized with an oil free lotion, added some lip balm on his lips and concealer under the eyes and the cut near his lip. I powdered his face for the shoot and groomed the beard and stache. However, if all he has to do is look good for the day, he could do without the powder.

For men who want to start tweaking their looks, start by figuring out your skin type. Buy a facial cleanser, oil free moisturizer with SPF and lip balm. The more natural the products, the better. Remember also lots of water, exercise and sleep will also aid in looking your best. If you want to experiment with concealers and powders find your nearest cosmetic counter. If you are too shy to apply it there ask for samples of concealers and loose powder. Take it home and practice. Look at yourself in daylight too because lights in the bathroom are different than outside. Have fun always, look good and feel good. That's all that matters.




How does male make-up work?. Image 2.

Mike Sheffield


How does male make-up work?. Image 3.

Antwan Duncan


How does male make-up work?. Image 4.