What I've Learned | Celebrity Make-up Artist Andrea Claire
Canadian Andrea Claire is a veteran of the hair and make-up industry, with an international career spanning more than 25 years. She is in-demand for editorial, session, film and TV work and consults for many brands. She has appeared on numerous TV shows including Canadian Idol and Asia's Next Top Model. Originally from Toronto, she lives in Singapore with her husband and youngest daughter.
A SERIES OF LESSONS IN LIFE FROM WOMEN WE LOVE
I wake up in my old penthouse in the west of Singapore with my husband. My youngest daughter (10) will be around. I have two older daughters who still live in Toronto.
I’ve truly been blessed with so many amazing experiences in my 28 year career - Stylin’ Gypsies in 2003-04 was an incredible experience. I was working on-camera doing [hair and makeup] makeovers on women from all over Ontario. There were so many tears of joy from women who said that they didn’t believe that they could ever look so good! I like to work on enhancing a woman’s beauty. I never think of someone as my “blank canvas”; my view is that you should enhance your best features and radiate from within. I loved the experience which brought me more on-camera opportunities.
I've also had the opportunity to work with some amazing brands - I was the official L’Oreal Paris hair consultant for Canada from 2004-06 and ran the hair teams for Canadian Idol (2 seasons) and for fashion week (3 seasons). Directing a glam squad for live TV teaches you to be ready and on the ball for quick changes. Live work with zero time for screw-ups is an adrenaline rush and a major panic all at once. Proud to say: zero screw-ups! I was also the creative director for make-up for a Revlon Canada campaign in 2007. We make-up artists dream of working for beauty brands - to be handed boxes full of products and told to create looks is a) an honour and b) a huge ego boost!
In 2013 I worked with Seal in Singapore. I had been working a lot and finally had a day off. (I’m a workaholic, so a day off is welcomed, but I’d happily work 24/7). I had literally stepped out of the shower to hear my phone ringing. When I answered, I was asked if I could be at a hotel within two hours to groom Seal for a shoot. Absolutely!
His assistant called back requesting that I bring a certain international grooming brand with me, which at the time was not in my kit. It’s not unheard of - especially for A-list celebs, to request specific brands; usually then we contact the PR person who are more than eager and helpful to send the requested products directly to you and/or the celeb. Sadly, not in this case. The woman was not interested in helping out a request in exchange for a PR opportunity. Baffles the mind!
I’ve worked with many models and celebrities and in the early stages of my career I would have reeled off a ton of names of dream clients I’d love to work with. Now, it’s the norm in my line of work. People are people. Some are kind, some are difficult. I prefer authentic, kind people; who doesn’t prefer nice people though?
I'm 47 (although my maturity hovers around 23) and am often asked how to keep the ageing beast at bay - I joke that immaturity and eye cream are my secrets but obviously there is more to it! I use a cornucopia of skincare products, my go-tos are Dermalogica and Dr TWL Dermaceuticals. I also have in-clinic peels and HIFU treatments with Dr Wan Lin Teo. My top budget beauty buy is mascara. It's cheap and cheerful - it’s really about the wand. In terms of products worth splurging on, I go for skincare and foundation; quality shows. And a Dyson hair dryer. It is truly life changing.
Success is health and happiness. Beauty is a kind heart. My advice for today’s twenty-something woman starting out in life? Take risks. I didn’t take risks until I was older and looking back, I wish I had sucked up some of my insecurities and just tried. I’m sure it sounds like a cliché, but follow your dreams. And don’t ever gossip unless it’s about yourself. What others are doing, is none of your business.
The best advice I’ve ever been given is don’t think everyone is your friend. A fashion / entertainment industry warning: my problem is that I think everybody is a good person.
I have so many favourite travel destinations... I’d have to say that my favourite to date was on Rascal Voyages in Komodo [in Indonesia], a live aboard super yacht. It’s vacationing at its most indulgent. Private chef, rain showers in the cabins, waking up on the calm ocean waters. I guess a sailor’s life is for me! Although, on reflection, maybe I’m turning into Goldie Hawn’s character from Overboard. I like to travel with my husband and three daughters.
I sleep best at my mother’s farmhouse in Canada. It’s cold, breezy and my allergies kick into overdrive but somehow I sleep incredibly well. It must be because my mother is nearby.