It Feels So Good Sonique
Lisa Eldridge is a Creative Director for No7 Cosmetics and the resident make-up artist on hit TV show 10 Years Younger.
Mimi talks to Lisa Eldridge
Lisa began her career as a make-up artist doing free test shoots with a variety of photographers until her talent was spotted and she was signed to an agent.
Her big break came when she was commissioned to work with Cindy Crawford for the cover of Elle magazine and lucky Lisa has never looked back since.
Working on high profile campaigns with the world's top models and photographers is all in a day's work for the top make-up artist.
Here she talks to Mimi about beauty, career highlights, creative projects and her family.
I was born in England and we moved to New Zealand for a few years and then back to England again at the age of 5.
We lived in Liverpool when I was a child and I moved to London twenty one years ago.
My passion at school was art, I was always drawing faces in great detail.
I did art foundation and a course in theatrical make-up and costume design when I left school.
How did you get started as a make-up artist?
After doing my theatrical make-up course I thought I should try to get a job at the BBC. I didn’t know any other way to get started.
I loved magazines and always bought Vogue. I dreamt of doing the make-up for their pages but this was just before supermodels and the fashion world was a mystery to the outsider.
Unlike today when models, stylists and designers are household names, back then it was much more of a closed shop. I didn’t get a job at the BBC, which in retrospect was a very good thing.
Instead I followed my heart and worked my way into the fashion industry. I began working for free on test shoots with new photographers and working on student fashion shows until I had a good enough portfolio to get an agent.
What do you feel was your big break?
Shortly after joining a good agency I got a job to do a cover for Elle with Cindy Crawford, we got on really well and she booked me for other things. This was definitely the point from which things really started to take off for me.
A funny thing from around that time was when Cindy booked me for the Freddie Mercury Tribute concert at Wembley. She was reporting on the event for Fox TV.
We got chatting to Axl Rose from Guns n'Roses and when they were called to go on stage Axl said Cindy and I could go and hang out at the side of the stage with them. Considering I had only just started working in the business walking on stage with G’n’R at Wembley really felt like I’d arrived!
Who’s been your favourite celebrity to work with?
There isn’t just one favourite. I’ve loved all the faces I’ve made up that’s what’s great about my job.
What’s your number one beauty tip?
Keep your make-up simple, it always looks better.
Key beauty trend for this season?
This summer a flash of bright colour somewhere on the face is a key trend.
The No7 Rainbow Eye Palette is perfect for achieving this look.
A sheer fuchsia or hot orange on the lips and for the eyes a block wash of colour across the lid or a shock of liner close to the lashes in a bright colour is great.
How did you become involved with Boots No7?
In 1998 I began designing and developing a brand new cosmetics range for Japan with Shiseido.
It was an amazing experience as I got to see my creative vision from its conception through to the products on the shelves.
Working with scientists at Shiseidos labs and using cutting edge technology was a very steep learning curve into the world of product development.
Boots had bought some of the products when they were on a fact-finding trip to Tokyo and thought they were fantastic.
Initially I did some ‘cool-hunting’ work (shopping globally for new products to sell) for Boots alongside my work with Shiseido.
When my three year contract with Shiseido was coming to an end I was told Boots were looking for someone to redesign and creatively direct No7 and that they’d love me to do it. It was a dream job and the perfect next step for my career.
Is it true you train the No7 consultants on how to apply make-up?
Not all, there are over 900 No7 consultants. We have a special Make-up artists training program.
Twenty one have completed the course so far. However I have been making ‘how to’ DVD’s four times a year for the past three years and every single consultant gets these to watch and learn from at home.
I also do one hour group workshops for all consultants once a year to help with particular skills.
Career highlight to date?
So many it’s difficult to say. Probably designing the make-up for the Prada perfume film. It was shot over a week in Berlin and directed by Jordan and Ridley Scott.
From genius wardrobe designer, set designers, lighting cameraman and of course directors it was amazing to be part of a team of such inspiring and talented people.
What was it like to work on 10 Years Younger?
I wasn’t sure about it in the beginning, as I hadn’t actually seen the show although I had heard about it, but I have to say I enjoyed every minute of it.
Anyone can make a teenage model with fabulous bone structure and skin look great...it’s easy. Working with a 40 something worn out mother who’s really let herself go is an all together different matter.
I got to really use my skills and help these women transform themselves whilst at the same time demonstrating that good make-up can really work like magic.
I got quite involved with some of the women as they were so lovely and had a real lump in my throat when they had their ‘reveal to the mirror’ moment
Nature... it is my main inspiration in life. I’ve just come back from travelling around New Zealand. The colours and textures of the seaweeds I saw alone are enough to keep my inspiration levels topped up for a good long while.
At the moment I’m liking my hair big so heated rollers for 5 mins...
Favourite place on earth
Anywhere in Italy
Nick Cave 'Into my Arms'
With my husband and our two gorgeous boys
Dresses, dresses and more dresses... I’m always on the look out for new ones. Designer, High Street, vintage I don’t mind just give me dresses!
Stella McCartney, Carrine Gilson, Agent Provocateur, Myla, M&S etc etc I love it!
I love shoes and have way too many!
My husband bought me the most amazing pair of Lanvins last Christmas which are my favourites but I must admit I have a bit of an obsession with high heels. I think well designed ones are a thing of great beauty.
Never worn one
I’ve never owned a designer one until I met my husband as I thought they were a waste of money.
Now thanks to him I have a very good collection of Prada ones as he works in Milan a lot and occasionally picks a nice one for me as a surprise present.
My current favourite is my pink and purple stripey one.
My Miu Miu green velvet headband with giant bejewelled dragonfly!
Alexander McQueen. My wedding dress was Alexander McQueen and it’s a work of art.
No7 Nude Lip pencil with Lip fusion gloss in ‘Bare’ on top
No7 Amazing eye pencil in Brown
Chanel Pro Lumiere
I try a different one every week in the name of research
Chanel Neroli Rose
Who cuts/colours your hair?
Lara Zee comes to my house to cut, colour and blow dry, she is fantastic.
Kiehls ‘Olive Fruit Deeply Repairative Hair Pack’ and Kerastatse Nutritive ‘Aqua-Oleum’
KISU by Tann Rokka
Desert island product
Where do you live?
In a converted Victorian piano factory in North London
One Cat named ‘Pea chop”
Eggs Benedict with smoked salmon
Vanilla Rooibos tea
Can’t live without