Meet The Founder

Make Up Artist Charlotte Tilbury answers our burning beauty questions

With 20 years’ experience in the beauty industry {Charlotte Tilbury} has worked her make up magic on some of the world’s most celebrated faces – creating iconic make up looks for countless VOGUE covers, catwalks and high-profile red carpet appearances, for models and actors from Kate Moss to Sienna Miller, via Cara Delevingne, Amal Clooney and Gigi Hadid (to name a few…)

Renowned for her signature ‘rock chick’ aesthetic, with smouldering ‘bedroom eyes’, beautifully tousled ‘bed hair’ and a Brigitte Bardot pout, we asked the glamazon to share her top tips, pick her favourite products and expose the most-common make up mistakes we’re making…

{Cult Beauty} Charlotte, we are SO excited to add Charlotte Tilbury make up to Cult Beauty’s ‘Hall of Fame’. The range is stunning, and we know it must be practically impossible to choose, but do you have a favourite product from the range?

{Charlotte Tilbury} I’m a mascara obsessive! When I started wearing it at age 13, I realised the whole world responded differently to me – just because of the power of make up! I spent years searching for ‘The One’ and used to cocktail up to five mascaras to create the effect I desired: curl, length, volume, separation and drama. I created my genius {Full Fat Lashes} mascara as it ticks all the boxes and has a special laser cut five-grooved brush to deposit mascara right at the root of the lashes. Use lashings and lashings of it for a Bambi-eyed effect.

{CB} When it comes to your ‘wardrobe’ of looks, are there any you find yourself recommending more often than others? 

{CT} When I was working with celebrities and models, I realised that they channel a whole range of different ‘characters’, so I created my make up wardrobe of ten, iconic looks that are universally flattering. Any woman can go from {The Rock Chick}, to {The Golden Goddess} to {The Bombshell}, and each of the looks can be dialled-up or dialled-down to be as natural or amped-up as suits your personal style.

{CB} If there was a make up apocalypse, and you were limited to just one product for life, which would it be?

{CT} I can’t pick a favourite product – it’s like asking a mother to choose her favourite child! But, I always say – “You can’t have a beautiful painting without a beautiful canvas!” Plumped-up, gorgeously smooth, hydrated and well moisturised skin will help your make up last so much longer. I can’t live without my {Magic Cream} – it is a miracle-working moisturiser! I created it backstage for supermodel and celebrities – it soon acquired ‘cult’ status and they became obsessed with it, so I decided to share it with the world. Its like a push-up bra in a jar!

{CB} What is the most common make up mistake women make?

{CT} Not blending foundation properly is a common mistake. A lot of women don’t realise you need to blend it out onto the neck and ears for a natural look. You want it to look as seamless as possible so use a very light, natural-looking base. I use my fingers a lot for foundation and concealer because the warmth of your hands helps to diffuse the product, but for more perfected coverage, use my {Foundation Brush} to really ‘polish’ liquid formulas.

{CB} For those of us who long to achieve the perfect ‘cat eye’, what are your expert tips?

{CT} {The Feline Flick}. I created it because everyone kept asking me how to get the ‘Kate Moss look’ and I wanted to make it ultra-easy to achieve. I took inspiration from the Japanese art of calligraphy, and put it into a felt tip style pen. It does all of the hard work for you!

{CB} Contouring’s another ‘trend’ that looks a bit daunting. Do you have any tricks for those who love the look but are afraid they’ll get it wrong?

{CT} Contouring is one of Hollywood’s oldest secrets and literally gives you an instant facelift. It’s also so easy, especially with my {Filmstar Bronze & Glow} contouring palette – it is my secret weapon for perfecting killer, supermodel cheekbones in seconds.

All you have to do is suck in your cheekbones and using my {Powder & Sculpt Brush}, follow the hollow with the natural ‘Sculpt’ shade. You can also paint this along the jawline to add definition, and at the temples to slim the forehead. Then dust the ‘Highlight’ shade on top of the cheekbones, down the nose and on the cupid’s bow for skin that’s dripping in candlelight. This is something I created after working with Jennifer Lopez. I’ve used it a lot on Kim Kardashian, Kate Moss, Alicia Vikander… it’s become a red carpet staple, used by all celebrities and supermodels. Its contouring made easy – that’s why everyone’s obsessed with it.

{CB} What’s your biggest beauty secret?

{CT} Without a doubt, amazing skin. I never, ever start make up without my full ‘Magic’ regime. Your make up will sit better and look better – your skin will appear luminous, youth-boosted and glowing! AND it will last longer! I start off with my {Night Cream} (I literally age overnight without it), then on waking, apply {Magic Cream} to the skin – it’s brimming with camellia oil, rosehip oil, bionymph peptides and hyaluronic acid – to drench your complexion with much-needed moisture.

Then for a refreshed, smooth eye area, tap in my {Magic Eye Rescue} using your ring finger (it has the lightest touch). This delicate area ages most rapidly – you need to look after it, WHATEVER your age!

{CB} You’re a make up artist for so many celebrities – whose face do you enjoy making up the most?

{CT} I’ve been lucky enough to work with so many amazing superstars, supermodels and actresses! Kate Moss has an incredible face for make up. She has the most perfect heart-shaped lips, the most fabulous ‘killer’ cheekbones, and hypnotising almond-shaped eyes. She is an icon! Her face is made for make up – she’s a chameleon, she can morph into any character.

Kate actually inspired many of the 10 looks within my signature make up wardrobe. She looks incredible as an ‘Old Hollywood’ {Bombshell} – with a striking red lip and elongated eye – but she also looks amazing as a sexy {Rock Chick} with those amazing smoky, ‘bedroom eyes’.

{CB} And finally, so many people say that ‘less is more’. Is this a mantra you subscribe to?

{CT} Darling, more is more! I’m a make up addict and I even sleep in it!

More is more, because I know that the more of my products you use, the better you’ll look! The incredible thing about Charlotte Tilbury make up is that you’ll never look caked, or like you are wearing TOO much, because all of my products are made from the BEST ingredients, with the most flattering hues and most finely milled pigments, as well as being chock-full of genius active ingredients that treat and transform your skin while you wear.


Verity Douglas

Verity Douglas

Content Editor

Cult Beauty’s Content Editor and a Cult Beauty OG, Verity loves nothing more than the marriage of language and lip balm. A quintessential Libran, she’s a self-professed magpie for luxury ‘must-haves' and always pursuing the new and the niche — from the boujee-est skin care to cutting-edge tech. Balancing an urge to stop the clock with her desire to embrace the ageing process (and set a positive example for her daughter), Verity's a retinol obsessive and will gladly share her thoughts about the time-defying gadgets, masks and treatments worth the splurge...