5 Makeup Tricks I Learned from a Professional + My Makeup from the GxHSP Shoot

Happy Monday from sunny Kauai! We arrived yesterday afternoon, gawked at our condo and view for a little bit, then immediately hit the sack! That’s the longest travel day our kids have every endured, and they were absolute champs. We’re excited to hit the ground running and experience all this magical island has to offer (thanks, in part, to all your amazing tips!). I’m posting our adventures to my Instagram Story, so follow along if you’d like!

Today I’m excited to share some simple, yet game-changing tips I learned from working with Suzie Moldovan…an award-winning, professional makeup artist! I was lucky enough to be on the receiving end of her talents for the Gibson x Hi Sugarplum Collection photoshoot for Nordstrom, and couldn’t believe the transformation. (See behind-the-scenes of that shoot in this post.)

I went from being fairly indifferent to makeup, to a complete makeup junkie! Now I stop at the Nordstrom beauty counter on every visit! And from the response and number of questions I’ve had about lipstick and eye shadow colors, I’d say y’all are right there with me!

In fact, I had so many questions, I asked Suzie if she’d be willing to share the products and colors she used for the shoot, and she happily agreed! Plus, I’m passing on the amazing tips she taught me…so let’s get started!

Five Make-Up Tips I Learned from the Pros

5 secret makeup tips used by professional makeup artists
Lipsticks: Nars ‘Yu’ layered with Nars ‘Claudia’

hair and makeup professional using hair wand

1. Overline just the Cupids Bow for a fuller, younger looking lip

I always assumed you overline the entire mouth, but that’s what gives the fake ‘duck mouth’ pout. You actually want to overline just the Cupids Bow, where the majority of collagen is concentrated in younger girls. It’s a quick and easy step, but makes a huge difference! I whipped up this little video to demonstrate (thanks Mr. SP for the music!).

(If you’re reading on a feed or email, click here to watch the video.)

2. Layer powders over creams for long-time staying power

Suzie applied cream shadow, followed by powdered eye shadow, and the colors stayed put all day with no creasing or smudging! She does the same for blush…always layer powder blush over a cream-based blush. We worked 12-hour days, shooting 20+ outfits each day, and the only touch-ups she had to do to my makeup were under my eyes (when I got a little sweaty), and changing lip colors! Everything else stayed put!! That’s serious staying power.

3. Use eyebrow pencil to frame your face & create symmetry

You know I’m a huge fan of defined brows, and am a firm believer they can make you look 10 years younger (see my post on that subject here). Suzie taught me to not only darken and define the brows, but create symmetry for the face. She demonstrated her techniques on my Instagram Story, and I saved it to a handy video for us. She’s using Anastasia in ‘Medium Brown’

(Watch the video here if you’re on a reader or email.)

4. Add highlighter to the waterline for a brighter eye

I’ve always added a dot of silvery highlight to the inner corner of my eye, but the best way to open and brighten your eye is to add it to your waterline. But even more importantly, the key is using a peach tone to balance any red. She used Urban Decay Waterline Pencil in ‘Walk of Shame’, a waterproof formula that stays put all day (and didn’t irritate my eyes).

5. Use lipstick to complete the face, and more importantly…the outfit!

Y’all know I love a bright pink lip…and I pretty much rotate between two shades, Nars ‘Yu’ & Bobbi Brown ‘Punch,’ regardless of what I’m wearing. But Suzie actually assembled an entire palette of bright pinks, reds, and corals just for me, and changed my lip color for almost every single outfit!! I couldn’t believe the difference it made in showcasing the clothes. Below are the main colors we used repeatedly…all of which I’ve now added to my arsenal…along with the rest of the makeup.

makeup trick for making lips look bigger

Makeup Products:

Primer: Becca Backlight Filter
Foundation: Custom blends
Blush: Pixi ‘Sugar & Spice’ Cream Palette, layered with Nars ‘Orgasm’ powder
Contour: Charlotte Tilbury ‘Film Star’
Highlight: Pixi Sweet Glow palette, Color ‘Dulce’
Bronzer: Stila ‘Matte Bronze Medium’
Eyes: Mac ‘Shroom‘ with ‘Soft Brown‘ & ‘Expensive Pink‘ in the crease
Mascara: Bobbi Brown Everything in ‘Black’
Brow Pencil: Anastasia in ‘Medium Brown’

makeup trick for bright eyes and contoured cheeks
Romper in ‘Black Floral’ | Wedge Sandal | Pink Circle Bag | Tassel Earring | Straw Hat | Lipstick: Nars ‘Natalie’

makeup trick for full lips without injections
Tie Front Cami in ‘Palm’ | Tassel Earring | Lipstick: Nars ‘Grace’

makeup trick for defined full brows
Romper in ‘Black’ | Leopard Clutch | Gold Disc Earrings | Gold Cuff Bracelet | Lipstick: Nars ‘Lana’

makeup trick for slimming contour cheek
Pleated Skirt in ‘Stripe’ | V-Neck Tee in ‘White’ | Jean Jacket | Bamboo Bag | Tassel Earrings | Lipsticks: Nars ‘Yu’ layered with Nars ‘Claudia’

makeup trick for full lips
Pleated Skirt in ‘Nautical’ | Ruffle Racerback Tank in ‘White’ | Tassel Earrings | Lipstick: Nars ‘Yu’

makeup trick for full brows
Gingham Ruffle Top in ‘Royal’ | White Jeans | Earrings | Clutch | Lipstick: Mac ‘Girl About Town’

makeup trick for bright lips with pink lipstick
High-Low Halter Top in ‘Black’ | White Jeans | Leopard Clutch | Cuff Bracelet | Earrings | Lipstick: Nars ‘Grace’

lip liner makeup trick from makeup professional

makeup trick for contoured cheekbones
Tie Front Cami in ‘Red Pink Dot’ | Cropped Stretch Pants | Earrings | Cuff Bracelet | Lipstick: Nars ‘Grace’  mixed with Kevyn Aucoin ‘Everlasting’

how to slim face with makeup trick for bronzing contour
Tie Sleeve Tee in ‘Red Pink’ | White Jeans|  Hoop EarringsBamboo Bag | Lipstick: Nars ‘Grace’  mixed with Kevyn Aucoin ‘Everlasting’

makeup trick for whitening teeth by using bright lipstick
Halter Top in ‘Coral Floral’Earrings | Cuff Bracelet | Lipstick: Nars ‘Grace’ mixed with Kevyn Aucoin ‘Everlasting’

makeup trick for full lashes and brows
Ruffle Sleeve Dress in ‘Royal Stripe’ | Ombre Tassel Earring | Lipstick: Charlotte Tilbury ‘Pillow Talk’ with Anastasia ‘Dolce Liquid Lips’

makeup trick for brightening eyes along waterline
Elbow Sleeve Tee in ‘Nautical Blue Stripe’ | Pleat Skirt in ‘Palm’ |  Tassel Earring | Lipstick: Charlotte Tilbury ‘Pillow Talk’ with Anastasia ‘Dolce Liquid Lips’

5 makeup tricks and tips from professional makeup artists


When Suzie worked her makeup magic, I still looked and felt like me, but the absolute best version of me! And that confidence boost was much-appreciated, given the fact that I was shooting my own clothing line to be showcased at Nordstrom!! #hellointimidating

Be sure to follow Suzie Moldavon for more great makeup tips, and behind-the-scenes peeks at the life of a celebrity makeup artist! And find all my makeup, including the fabulous lip colors, at Nordstrom! What are your favorite makeup tips and tricks?


[Shop My Fave Lip Colors]

[Shop My Makeup]



*Photos by the darling and talented Samantha Klose. This post created in collaboration with Nordstrom, but all styles, ideas, and false eyelashes are my own. Thank you for supporting Hi Sugarplum sponsors.*

Leave a Comment


  1. I’m still very indifferent to makeup like you were before. I just can’t seem to get the hang of it! Taking these tips to heart. ❤️ Number four used to be one I practiced, actually! I just… got lazy. Oops! 😖

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

    Posted 6.11.18 Reply
  2. SO INTERESTING! Such a fun post! Going to have to try that lip liner trick for sure!

    Posted 6.11.18 Reply
  3. Christina wrote:

    I’m impressed now how the lipstick color really does change the look of the outfit! I’m loving the NARS ‘Natalie’ color!!

    Posted 6.11.18 Reply
  4. Patti wrote:

    This was so helpful! I just did the lipliner trick while I was getting dressed and my lips look…..AWESOME! Thanks Cassie!

    Posted 6.11.18 Reply
  5. Sandy wrote:

    Before I read the above comments I thought, what a fun, helpful post.
    Kauai pics pleeeeze!!!!

    Posted 6.11.18 Reply
  6. Brooke Barone wrote:

    Gorgeous! And great tips!
    Could you tell me where your cute sunglasses are from in the pic with the pink dot tank? They aren’t linked and you’re so detailed I assume that means they aren’t available- but thought I’d check. Thanks!

    Posted 6.11.18 Reply
  7. Tara wrote:

    Is it me? Where is the waterline?

    Posted 6.11.18 Reply
    • Vicki wrote:

      Such a fun post. Thank you. I too am wondering what is the waterline. Also, you said used walk of shame but that color doesn’t match what is in the link. Any chance Suzie could do a post on make-up for olive skin brown eyed girlies like me? ha.

      Posted 6.11.18 Reply
      • I’d love to! Hopefully I’ll work with Cassie again soon and we can do a full makeup tutorial… but until then, you can follow along on my instagram to see what I’m using!

        Posted 6.16.18 Reply
    • Cassie wrote:

      Oh sorry!! It’s the inside of your lower lid, the area between the lashes and your actual eye…the inner rim!

      Posted 6.12.18 Reply
  8. C.B. wrote:

    I’m surprised to see I already do most of these tricks…..must be doing something right with my life 😉 One thing I’ve noticed as I get older is that I wear lipstick less than I used too but I’m bolder with my choice of colours when I do put some on. Even went with a dark lip during the holidays and was surprised I could actually pull it off. I mean, you never know until you try it right?

    Posted 6.12.18 Reply
  9. The kitchen is beautifully decorated and delicate, I really like the decorations

    Posted 7.17.18 Reply
  10. dino run wrote:

    Thank you for sharing these 5 tips! it helps me!

    Posted 1.25.21 Reply
    • Cassie wrote:

      You’re so welcome! xo, C

      Posted 1.26.21 Reply