In just about six weeks, the Academy Awards will be taking place in Los Angeles. And I’m not going to be watching it on TV this time. I’m gonna BE there, and instead of just critiquing the looks of the stars, I need to be thinking about my own look for a change!

And yes, I’m a bit nervous. There’s so much to consider about red carpet beauty. What if I get shiny? What if I get sweaty? What if it rains? We’re supposed to be out there looking fabulous no matter what! These are the kind of events where people get Botox in their armpits, just so they won’t sweat. How can I represent at the highest level?

I turned to my friend, the incredible Sam Fine, for his expert advice. At this point I feel like even if you’ve been living under a rock, you should have heard of Sam Fine – let me just tell you this. Sam Fine has blessed and beat the faces of just about every celebrity of color you can think of.

Kerry Washington at Oprah's Lauren event makeup by Sam Fine Photo via SamFineBeauty.

He includes Iman, Queen Latifah, Kerry Washington and Vanessa Williams amongst his most regular clients. He’s the creative director of Fashion Fair Cosmetics. AND he keeps it very real and very professional at all times. Sam is someone you can definitely call a red carpet expert. He broke it all the way down for me, and this is advice that can be helpful for anyone working a red carpet, worrying about their wedding day or prom or major event where photos a-plenty will be taken!

For me, I’ll be covering the red carpet, so that means I shouldn’t be AS fancy as those walking the red carpet, right? WRONG.

“The moment your foot touches the red carpet, you’re ON IT. You need to look the part. Every feature needs to be highlighted. You need to shine.” Sam has created some of the more iconic looks in previous years, including Mo’Nique at the Golden Globes the year of her victory, and Vanessa Williams performance of Colors of the Wind at the 68th annual Academy Awards.

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“You want to look back and see how stunning that person looked. How timeless the makeup was. You don’t want to look back and say, oh that eye shadow was hot at the time.”

Don’t think for one second that every aspect of the makeup you see on Hollywood stars happened by accident. “Even a nude lip is carefully crafted. There’s base on the lip, a liner, a lipstick, then a gloss. Every feature needs to be well addressed. I’d compare red carpet to a wedding. It is a special moment when all eyes are on you. You need great foundation and powder. Perfect brows. Contouring. Give attention to each feature.”

And what about touch-ups? What if I get sweaty?

“It is an all-day event. NOT a time for moisturizer that’s going to make your makeup run later on. I prefer to use heavy coverage, but manipulate it in a way so it’s not one flat color. Think of using a stick or cream foundation, and set with loose powder. And people have heard that I used clear deodorant on Mo’Nique’s face to control the sweat issue.”

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Preparing for the red carpet sounds like a lot of work, and it is – but it’s best to start early and take your time.

“I take a full two hours to do Vanessa Williams, Mo’Nique, Iman. Because you want to feel secure. The time you spend getting ready earlier, is time you won’t have to worry about later. I take my TIME. Maybe you start four hours before. That way you can drink some champagne, tweet…and by the time you get I the car, you are READY to get in the CAR!”

Sam even dropped a few gems of advice regarding fashion. “Dressing for comfort is important. Don’t wear anything that can wrinkle or stain. You want to look fabulous all day!”

Talking with Sam made me feel a bit more ready for the big day, and I know no matter who does my face, I’ve got the advice I need to look as best as I can!

Sam Fine’s DVD is now for sale at Duane Reade, as well as Click here to follow him on Facebook, and click here to follow him on Twitter. Thank you, Sam!!! For EVERYTHING!

What looks do you love on the red carpet?


Chai says:
January 11, 2012, 1:38 pm
this was awesome....and who doesn't love Sam Fine!! I'll always prefer classy elegance to those who choose to 'experiment' on the red carpet. Yes, you'll be memorable, but often times for the wrong reasons. Bold colors, red lips always stick out in my mind. Please keep us posted on what you'll be excited;)!!
Anis says:
January 11, 2012, 1:46 pm
I really love her ! Hurting Fashion - The First Fashion Ad-Review The Hurting Fashion
A-Dubs says:
January 11, 2012, 1:53 pm
I am fascinated by Sam Fine's advice and sooo looking forward to watching for you on the carpet. Obvy, you will be excellent!
philip says:
January 12, 2012, 4:37 am
that was a very nice artucles, lots of tips i can get from it! thank you very much for this nice post.
efia says:
January 16, 2012, 10:30 pm
Monique Looks ABSOLUTELY Gorgeous!!!!!
Cassandra Kennedy Beauty says:
January 19, 2012, 2:26 am
The "timeless" advice is really good. I love how he gives each feature proper attention as well. Thank you for always keeping us posted on Mr. Fine. Love the "casual behind the scenes Sam" pic too :)
Nicole Evans MakeUp says:
January 19, 2012, 10:02 am
So Exciting!!!! Love that tip about clear deoderant! Had never heard that one and I can't wait to try it! Genius!