The beauty insiders

Their job is to make others beautiful, but what do the experts do for themselves? JOIE GOH asks makeup artists, hairstylists, GPs with an interest in aesthetics medicine, and other industry pros to share their secrets.

Portrait of Tammy Strobel

Their job is to make others beautiful, but what do the experts do for themselves? JOIE GOH asks makeup artists, hairstylists, GPs with an interest in aesthetics medicine, and other industry pros to share their secrets.

My Reading Room

1 Dr Lum Yang Xi, medical doctor, IDS Clinic
2 Larry Yeo, makeup artist
3 Alli Sim, founder, Mmerci Encore
4 Dr Low Chai Ling, medical director, The Sloane Clinic
5 Cheryl Chio
, editor and beauty blogger, Beautifulbuns
6 Clarence Lee, makeup artist
7 Sam Chok, hairstylist, Passion Hair Salon
8 Gladys Cheng, CEO and founder, Jet Concepts
9 Lynn Tan
, managing director, Fusion Cosmetics
10 Pauline Ng, managing director, Porcelain, The Face Spa
11 Venetia Stravens, makeup artist
12 Caryn Lim, owner, Hands + Feet Studio
13 Alexis Horowitz- Burdick, managing director, Sephora Digital SEA
14 Astrie Sunindar-Ratner, founder, The Beauty Candy Apothecary

My Reading Room

1.Sulwhasoo Concentrated Ginseng Renewing Cream, $276 (60ml)
“The brand’s products work for my skin type, and I like that the formulations are herbal.” – Gladys Cheng, CEO and founder, Jet Concepts

2 Trilogy Age Proof Daily Defence Moisturiser SPF15, $78 (50ml)
“It’s non-greasy and natural, gives immediate hydration, thanks to hyaluronic acid and vitamins A, C and E, mattifies and evens out the skin tone, and protects against sun damage.” – Lynn Tan, managing director, Fusion Cosmetics

3 Shiseido White Lucent Multibright Night Cream, $115 (50ml)
“It’s really moisturising without causing breakouts, and the scent is light and non-irritating.” – Venetia Stravens, makeup artist

4 Fresh Rose Deep Hydration Face Cream, $70 (50ml)
“I use it at night and I love how it feels on my skin.” – Alexis Horowitz-Burdick, managing director, Sephora Digital SEA

My Reading Room

5 SK-II Stempower Rich Cream, $217 (50g)
“It’s effective and nourishing, yet not too rich. My sensitive skin sometimes breaks out when I use a product that’s too strong, but not with this one.” – Caryn Lim, owner, Hands + Feet Studio

6 Bioderma Hydrabio Gel-Creme, $41.90 (40ml)
“It gives my skin enough hydration during the day without being sticky or greasy. It also functions very well as my primer, so my makeup lasts longer.” – Cheryl Chio, editor and beauty blogger, Beautifulbuns

7 Physiogel Daily Moisture Therapy Cream, $23.90 (75ml)
“I don’t like perfumed facial moisturisers or serums. This unscented one works well.” – Alli Sim, founder, Mmerci Encore

8 Bottega Verde Straordinaria Cream Multiactive Anti-Wrinkle Face Treatment, $79.90 (50ml) “I use it on the drier parts of my face, and it leaves my skin feeling comforted without being weighted down.” – Larry Yeo, makeup artist

My Reading Room

Anti-ageing serum 
1 Skinceuticals C E Ferulic High Potency Triple Antioxidant Treatment, $248 (30ml)
“We need a vitamin C and E combination for maximum anti-ageing daytime protection.” – Larry

2 SK-II Facial Treatment Essence, $99 (75ml), $204 (160ml)
“The formula is light and gentle, and gives me a subtle glow.” – Caryn

3 Lierac Mesolift Serum Ultra Vitamin Enriched Fresh Serum, $88 (30ml)
“It leaves my skin moisturised, toned and smooth with a healthy glow.” – Lynn

4 Arcona The Eyes Have It Regenerate [PM], $48 (9ml)
“I love the products from this brand, and this eye serum is very light yet effective.” – Alexis

5 Tata Harper Rejuvenating Serum, US$172 (S$230.62), from
“I started using this natural skincare range three years ago and my skin has never looked better.” – Astrie Sunindar-Ratner, founder, The Beauty Candy Apothecary

My Reading Room

6 Fresh Black Tea Age-Delay Firming Serum, $161 (50ml)
“I love the cucumber extract. It leaves my skin feeling refreshed.” – Venetia

7 Sulwhasoo Capsulized Ginseng Fortifying Serum, $198 (35ml)
“It increases the tautness and firmness of my skin, and a little goes a long way. Plus, I love anything herbal or ginseng.” – Cheryl

8 Skin Inc My Daily Dose Custom-blended Serum, $169 (for three 10ml vials)
“I love that this is tailored to my concerns. I follow this with a nightly spritz of organic hemp or black cumin oil.” – Alli

9 SK-II Genoptics Aura Essence, $199 (30ml)
“At night, the actives really help to even my skin tone.” – Larry

The Latest Trends in Beauty, according to…
Larry: “Apricot blush warms up your look. A light dusting gives a nice, sun-kissed look that doesn’t look sun-burnt or tanned. Stop using bronzer; it makes you look muddy.”
Sam: “Jennifer Lawrence’s asymmetrical bob, or a fashionable nape undercut.”
Venetia: “Bright lipstick on a glowing, ‘naked’ face.”
Clarence: “I don’t like to follow trends. I’m all for classic looks. I especially dislike nail art and those silly-looking ombre hairstyles.”

My Reading Room
Foundation & BB cream 
1 Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Stick Invisible Cover Foundation, $72
“It blends into the skin beautifully and photographs with a natural finish.” – Larry
2 Cle de Peau Beaute Radiant Fluid Foundation, $175 “I absolutely love this for special occasions.” – Alli
3 Shu Uemura Blanc:chroma Brightening UV Cushion Foundation, $75
 “It gives a mediumcoverage, natural-looking finish that’s a good balance between matte and dewiness, so you don’t look to shiny.” – Cheryl
My Reading Room

4 Laneige BB Cushion Anti-aging SPF50+/PA+++, $62
“It gives a stunning tinted moisturiser-like finish that has you looking as if you’re not wearing makeup.” – Larry “I use this BB cushion on a daily basis.” – Alli

5 Nars Velvet Matte Skin Tint SPF30/PA+++, $70
“I use it during weekends, which is when I need lighter coverage.” – Alli

6 Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation, $73
“It glides on smoothly and gives an even finish.” – Dr Low Chai Ling, medical director, The Sloane Clinic

7 Shiseido Synchro Skin Lasting Liquid Foundation, $74
“It’s as light as air! And the buildable coverage allows you to skip concealer.” – Clarence Lee, makeup artist

8 Nuxe White Brightening BB Cream SPF30/PA+++, $58
“It may be very light, but it evens out the skin tone, hides dark circles, and covers pores as well as dark spots for a smooth, flawless base.” – Lynn

My Reading Room

1 Supergoop! SPF50 Antioxidant-Infused Sunscreen Mist with Vitamin C, $27 (89ml)
“I use it on my body as it’s super light and hydrates the skin.” – Alexis

2 Bioderma Photoderm Spot SPF50+, $45.50 (30ml)
“I’m a fan of the brand’s cleansing water, so I decided to try the sunscreen. It doesn’t cake or leave white streaks on my face.” – Venetia

3 Hada Labo Air Aqua UV Day Emulsion Moist SPF50/ PA+++, $19.90 (30g)
“It’s very lightweight and non-greasy. It also has a slight brightening finish that helps it function as a primer as well.” – Cheryl

4 Lierac Sunific Solaire Extreme Cream SPF50+, $75 (50ml)
“It has a really nice scent, absorbs very well, is almost invisible, and is suitable for sensitive skin.” – Lynn

My Reading Room

5 Kose Sekkisei Sun Protect Essence Gel SPF50+/ PA++++, $50 (80g) “Although there are many other sunscreens that are extremely light in texture, this one feels refreshing on application and doesn’t leave a whitish film. It absorbs quickly, so you can put on your makeup immediately afterwards.” – Clarence

6 Sunplay Skin Aqua UV Watery Gel SPF50+/ PA++++, $18.90 (80g) “Not heavy and not sticky – even when I perspire.” – Larry

7 Shiseido Perfect UV Protector SPF50+/ PA++++, $59
“When I’m outdoors or doing water sports, I use this. Its ability to filter out UV rays is even stronger when it comes into contact with water.” – Clarence

8 Coola Face SPF30 Classic Sunscreen Unscented Moisturizer, $78 (50ml)
“I love how it feels on my skin, and it’s perfect for our hot and humid weather.” – Astrie

9 La Roche-Posay Anthelios XL SPF50+ Fluid Ultra-light, $46.90 (50ml)
“I use this everywhere on my face and body.” – Alli

Aesthetic treatments
1 Caryn
: Aesthetics & Hair Clinic, #08-04 Ngee Ann City Tower B, tel: 6235-0010 “Dr Tyng Tan does my laser treatments and microdermabrasion. She understands the treatment my skin needs.”

2 Venetia: Dermatology Associates Skin and Laser Specialist, #15-05/06 Paragon, tel: 6333-8108 “I go to Dr Lawrence Khoo for aesthetic procedures, like Ultherapy to firm the sagging skin around my neck.”

3 Cheryl: South Bridge Aesthetics, 277 South Bridge Road, tel: 9730-8999 “I do my Carbon Laser Peel here.”

4 Larry: Nu.Reflections, #05-12 Regency House, tel: 6235-5333 “For belly-fat zapping, as well as laser and ultrasound for my face.”

My Reading Room

1 Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer, $43

“It gives great coverage without caking.” – Alli

2 Laura Mercier Secret Concealer, $43
“I use it to conceal tattoos.” – Venetia

3 Za Perfect Fit Concealer, $13.90
“So affordable and so good. It glides on and stays on well.” – Caryn

4 Etude House Big Cover Concealer BB SPF50+/ PA+++, $26.90
“Some may find this heavy at first, but a little goes a long way. The coverage is really good, lasts the whole day, and doesn’t oxidise or become patchy.” – Cheryl

5 Cle de Peau Beaute Concealer, $116
“It’s not thick but provides heavy-duty coverage.” – Clarence

My Reading Room

6 RMS Beauty “Un” Cover-up, $58
“It’s lightweight and blends smoothly and seamlessly. All mums need this!” – Astrie

7 YSL Beauty Touche Eclat Radiant Touch, $58
“I’m not a fan of concealers, but I use this to highlight certain areas, and I find it sufficient to take away darkness and shadows.” – Venetia

8 Mirenesse Icon Sealer Concealer, $35
“The corners of my nose get red and this covers it up despite the light texture. I use it under my eyes for a brightening effect, too.” – Alexis

9 Clio Kill Cover Pro Artist Liquid Concealer, $19.90
“This does a good job of covering up and lasts all day.” – Gladys

10 Bobbi Brown Intensive Skin Serum Concealer, $65
“I’m a big fan of her products. This hides my dark circles very well.” – Dr Lum Yang Xi, medical doctor, IDS Clinic

1 Clarence: De Beauty, #03-60 Orchard Plaza, tel: 6737-2191 “Cindy Seah is my most trusted facial therapist. She uses only her bare hands – no machines at all – during the treatments, and performs wonderful effleurage. I never have to worry about redness, even after extractions. I’ve recommended people with the most sensitive skin to Cindy and they only have good things to say.”

2 Alli: Dermafeel, #03-16, Orchard Hotel Shopping Arcade, tel: 6737-9095 “I go to Hazel Kwok for my facial treatments.”

3 Astrie: Miss Paris & Dandy House, #05-25 Ngee Ann City, tel: 6235-1159 “I love the slimming facial.”

4 Venetia: Therapeutics Aroma, #03-01 Forum the Shopping Mall, tel: 6737-7039 “It is run by owner and founder Helen Tee. She has magical hands and her face massages are the absolute best. Everything she uses is natural and she’s an aromatherapist, too, which means heaven for the senses. An all-round superb experience always.”

5 Larry: Clarins Spa, #05-05/06/07, Wheelock Place, tel: 6838-5060 “I get my facials here.”

My Reading Room

1 Chanel Stylo Yeux Waterproof Long-lasting Eyeliner in Black, $35
“Long-lasting and doesn’t smudge as much as some other brands I’ve tried.” – Gladys

2 Sephora Collection Classic Line 24HR Felt Liner, $20
“I like most Sephora eyeliners. They give me a good run for my2 Sephora Collection Classic Line 24HR Felt Liner, $20 “I like most Sephora eyeliners. They give me a good run for my money and, as they come in a myriad of colours, they're very versatile, too.” – Dr Low

3 Shu Uemura Lasting Soft Gel Pencil, $36
“It doesn’t budge! And it’s so thin and soft, I can achieve that fine line under my lashes easily and comfortably.” – Venetia

4 Dejavu Lasting Fine Eyeliner, $19
“It’s smooth and has a very long-lasting finish.” – Clarence

5 Maybelline New York Hypersharp Liner, $21.90
“Smudge-proof and easy to apply.” – Pauline Ng, managing director at Porcelain, The Face Spa

Eyebrow grooming
1 Pauline:
Browhaus, #04-08A Plaza Singapura, tel: 6332-0250 “All the therapists I’ve encountered are great.”

2 Clarence: Dainty Beaute, #02-34 West Coast Plaza, tel: 6779-6235 “Bernice Wong gets the angles of the brows just right. Several of us pro makeup artists go to her. Enough said!”

3 Dr Lum: iBrow Studio, #B1-107 Square 2, tel: 6397-6801 “I work in the Novena area, so it’s convenient for me and my brows. Both of us look good afterwards.”

How to Extend the Life of Your Manicure
“Always apply a generous amount of quick-drying top coat. It prevents the polish from chipping too quickly.” – Caryn

How to Do Your Brows Quickly and Flawlessly
“Start at the less bushy area of the brows and draw outwards, then flip the direction of the strokes and gently fill in the empty areas in front. Finally, brush the spoolie through the brows to blend the colour into the skin. – Larry

Manicures & pedicures 
1 Astrie: Kim Robinson, #02-12 Ngee Ann City, tel: 6738-8006 “I get my nails and hair done in one go – and in less than an hour!”

2 Dr Lum: Nail Clinique, #03-18 Novena Square, tel: 6333-0335 “They're really friendly. I always feel at ease, and they don’t try to sell me products I won’t use.”

3 Venetia: Snails the Nail Spa, #03-01 Wheelock Place, tel: 6738-0100 “I like all the manicurists here. The paint job is the best and my polish stays shiny even after two weeks! Plus, they serve a yummy ginger tea.”

4 Alexis: Summer Haven, #01-04 China Square Central, tel: 6536-0400 “It’s great for women who work in the financial district.”

5 Larry: The Kuching Nail Spa, #03-03 Holland Village Shopping Centre, tel: 6763-9868 “I have hooves for feet and they never, ever judge me for this. After they get rid of the calluses, my feet always look better.”

My Reading Room

1 Lynn: Botanics Creation, #03-11/12 Pacific Plaza, tel: 6235-0362 “I love the Spa Signature Clarifying Scalp Treatment.”

2 Dr Lum: Chez Vous, #05-05 Ngee Ann City, tel: 6732-9388 “My best friend recommended Winky Loke. I never told him how I like to wear my hair, but he’s been able to read my mind and work his magic.”

3 Cheryl: Dusol Beauty Novena, #03-73/76 Square 2, tel: 6397-6560 “Kevin Gim does my colour. He understands all the little things I like and dislike, and exactly what I want very well.”

4 Larry: Hairloom, #01-50/52 Shaw Towers, tel: 6295-2088 “My regular stylist is Michael Chiew, but everyone there has cut my hair before. They really understand my head shape as a bad cut will make me look like Fido Dido from the ’90s!”

5 Caryn: Kenaris Salon, #04-03 Wheelock Place, tel: 6333-8206 “I’ve been going to Vincent Soh ever since I was in my teens! He always patiently listens to what I want and then gives me his professional opinion as to what will work for me and what won’t. He knows exactly the kind of cut, colour and treatment I need.”

6 Astrie: Kim Robinson, #02-12 Ngee Ann City, tel: 6738-8006 “Cathy Shu colours my hair – she’s the best!”

7 Dr Low: Mosche Hair Salon, Level 2 Royal Plaza on Scotts, tel: 6734-0923 “Leslie Yap is one of my go-tos for hair maintenance.”

8 Clarence: Sublime Hairdressing, #05-32 Orchard Central, tel: 6733-6966 “I’ve been going to Benny Chong since 1997 and have sported hairstyles of different lengths, from super short to almost down to the waist. Every once in awhile, I get people asking who does my hair because they want to go to him, too.”

9 Cheryl: The Comb Hair Studio, 12 Gemmill Lane, tel: 6438-3138 “I go to Ryan Kin for perms. Their prices are really affordable, and it gives me nice natural waves like those stars have in the K-dramas.”

10 Gladys: VC Hair, #01-02 HPL House, tel: 6836-4717 “I go there for fantastic colouring and highlights, which are never boring. Vincy Koh usually does my colour.”