Dedication. That’s the word that best describes makeup artist Charlotte Tilbury. The beauty mogul and confidant to celebrities is committed to being on top of her game all the time, and is recognised for inventing some of the industry’s most-loved and game-changing products to date, which are now available at Sephora Singapore. She tells us all about her beauty innovations, business rules, and best-kept secrets in the boardroom and bedroom— including sleeping with makeup on (her husband, she admits, has never seen her without makeup, ever).
Let’s get down to business: What are your golden rules?
When it comes to it, I really believe in pushing yourself. When you’re passionate about something, anything is possible! I’ve also learned how important hard work and self-belief are; they’re really key to being successful. It’s often our insecurities that stop us and block us. Life is not linear; don’t believe in negatives and don’t give up!
Describe your career evolution.
No two days have ever been the same since I started out as a makeup artist in the early ’90s. From a young girl eager to learn and develop my skills, and to share the power of makeup with everyone I met, I’ve progressed to working with some of the most beautiful superstars in the industry, shooting iconic covers for the biggest magazines, leading the artistry for Fashion Week runways and, of course, making my dreams come true and launching my own limitless beauty revolution! The one thing that hasn’t changed since I started out is my mission to spread the powerful, feel-good factor of makeup and to create the most innovative products.
Singapore is your latest stop in global domination. What can we expect?
Darling, I created my brand and counters so it would feel like everyone has me sitting with them at their vanity tables, helping them to become the most beautiful versions of themselves. I’ve decoded and demystified the daunting world of choosing and shopping for skincare and makeup, hopefully making everyone feel beautiful, comfortable and empowered with my easy-to-use, easy-to-choose and easy-to-understand products. I’ve also taken the industry secrets out of the VIP world and given everyone access to the knowledge I’ve acquired over two decades—bottling up all of my red carpet, backstage and celebrity beauty secrets!
What ingredients are you currently obsessed with?
The four in my new foundation, Airbrush Flawless Foundation. There’s Replexium, a fusion of two patented peptides that work to reduce the look of wrinkles by up to 22 percent within eight weeks of use; Magic MossCellTec, which helps keep skin moisturised for up to 24 hours and boosts moisture levels by up to 216 percent in an hour; AirCool, which lends an instant freshness to skin by combating perspiration and humidity; and C.T. Defence, a peptide that protects against urban pollutants, a key cause of premature skin ageing.
From top: Cheek to Chic blusher in Ecstasy, $70; Legendary Lashes Volume 2 mascara, $55, Charlotte Tilbury. Charlotte Tilbury with a supersized Airbrush Flawless Foundation at the London launch. The Rock ’N’ Kohl eyeliner in Barbarella Brown ($42). Bar of Gold highlighter palette. Tilbury’s Magic Cream, ($150). Matte Revolution Lipstick in Pillow Talk, $50, Charlotte Tilbury
"One thing hasn’t changed: My mission to spread the powerful, feel-good factor of makeup and skincare. —Charlotte Tilbury"
From top left: Magic Vanish colour corrector in Tan, $55; Magic Away liquid concealer, Charlotte Tilbury. Smears of Lip Lustre in Red Vixen, Unleash Me and Ibiza Nights, Superstar Lips in Wild Lips ($43), and Luscious Lip Slick in Pillow Talk Diamonds. Life Changing Lashes eyelash curler. Dana Koh and Tilbury. The Luxury Palette in The Bella Sofia and Pillow Talk ($90 each). The Airbrush Flawless Foundation campaign. Smears of the Airbrush
Now about your “beauty sleep”... what products do you wear to bed?
I always wear a smoky eye to bed—that’s where the expression “smoky eye till I die!” originated! But first, I always thoroughly cleanse with the Take‑It‑All‑Off eye makeup remover, followed by the Multi‑Miracle Glow Balm—the camellia oil smells so delicious! The key to flawless, “poreless‑looking” skin is my Goddess Skin Clay Mask. I leave it on for 15 minutes, then smooth on the retinol‑infused Magic Night Cream and Magic Eye Rescue, both of which make my skin look fresh and plump. For my famous bedroom eyes, I first define using Rock ‘N’ Kohl eyeliner in Barbarella Brown, then create a more almond‑shaped eye with my signature Feline Flick—it instantly makes eyes look lifted and seductive—and finish with the Legendary Lashes mascara!”
Skincare aside, what else is part of your beauty regime?
When I have the time, I try to go for regular facials. In London, I visit Debbie Thomas’ skin clinic. I also take homoeopathic drops and vitamin C because I’m always on the go and travelling. They really help boost my immunity and keep my energy levels high.
Out of your 10 makeup wardrobes, which one do you wear the most?
The Bella Sofia, which is inspired by glamorous Mediterranean women, and really captures the freedom and sensuality of a smouldering eye and a sexy, nude pout. I’m obsessed with the molten bronzes, reddish‑browns and coppery tones in the look; they really make my green eyes pop for a sultry, siren‑like gaze. The name is a combination of both of my nieces’ beautiful Italian and Spanish names, Bella and Sofia, which makes it even more personal for me!
What are some of your quick fixes when you’re having a bad skin day?
I always turn to my holy grail of concealers: Magic Away, which has been called “Spanx for the under‑eyes”! The incredibly flexible formula literally stretches over the skin, smoothing and concealing imperfections such as dark circles, pigmentation, redness and blemishes, while not creasing or sitting in the lines. It delivers full coverage that lasts for up to 15 hours.
After a long day, what helps you unwind?
I go for regular acupuncture sessions to help me relax and when I have the time, I do love a bath! My bathroom is my sanctuary. I like to light Hôtel Costes candles (my favourite scent is Brown) to create a relaxed atmosphere. While I’m in the bath, I always multi‑mask, first with the Goddess Skin Clay Mask, then the Instant Magic Facial Dry Sheet Mask, before applying my award‑winning Charlotte’s Magic Cream.
What’s your ultimate self-care, self-love ritual?
Spending time with my gorgeous family and friends. I’m lucky to have a very close‑knit group of loved ones, and I value my time with them—it means everything to me. Every year, I take time off to visit Ibiza, where I grew up and where my parents still live. It’s such a magical and nourishing place for me to relax and unwind; it recharges my batteries.