And the best thing about this technique is it doesn’t even involve picking up a brush or any makeup product at all. It’s not blending, it’s not concealing, and guess what? Nobody will even know you’re doing it!

This technique will change your makeup game for good.

Perhaps you’re already using it and you don’t even know it yet – or you just haven’t given it a minute to acknowledge its very existence.

This little secret weapon is something I like to call “The Unspoken Scan” and it happens every time I am going to apply makeup to someone.



I coined the phrase after realizing how much of a makeup, particularly the first time you meet an actor or client, happens before you even get near any actual makeup products.

And the most beautiful thing is, that you don’t even have to let your client or performer know what’s happening. It’s just a very short but very important moment or two, where you assess the face you’re about to make up.

I kinda feel like the Terminator sometimes and I guess that’s how I see the unspoken scan. You’re literally scanning someone’s face, like the Terminator. Oh gawd, am I aging myself there or what?

The reason I practice my unspoken scan is basically so I know what I’m in for when someone sits in my chair. So I can be as prepared as possible, and there are no shocks or surprises.

Obviously, there will be the odd time that you don’t have the luxury of a trial, test or meeting your client before the day of the makeup application. And if this is the case, then you really have to put your unspoken scan into ninja-like reflex action.



Whether you’re doing a trial for a wedding, or you’re meeting your leading actor for the first time, the process is the same. And you should be putting your observation skills into practice as soon as you meet your person.

When this happens, literally allow your eyes to study their face.

Take note of the texture and condition of their skin. Also if there are any issues you will have to contend with.

Study their face shape, their eye shape. Take it all in and take note of anything that could present challenges and make a mental note for later (that way there are no shocks when you’re in the thick of your makeup and you discover a sty in their eye, or something like that).

I also love the notion that you can be chatting to your actor/model/client about what they had for breakfast, or their pet or something totally removed from the situation, and all the while you’re taking it all in, preparing for your work as best you can.

And, should something come up, by all means, discuss it with them. Talk it out.

Discussion is basically the end result of your unspoken scan. Whether your actress only likes to wear a certain type of foundation, or has a birthmark, or melasma that they desperately want you to cover. Whatever it is, this comes after your scan.



As I mentioned, you should commence your unspoken scan as soon as is humanly possible when you first meet your client, model or performer. This will give you the maximum amount of time to analyze their face.



Once you get into the routine of doing your unspoken scan with every makeup application, you’ll start to wonder how you ever worked before. Or at least how you worked before without noticing that you may have indeed, been practicing some kind of scan, but just never really noticed or gave it a name!

But the benefits of doing so can make life so much easier at work.

It will remove the shock value entirely. Have you ever had that performer have a tattoo that you didn’t know about until you were on the verge of telling them that they were all finished and ready to go to hair? Not ideal, right?

Well, with the unspoken scan, there should be no surprises. No shocks. And just you being better at your job and more efficient with your makeup times.

And that, my friend, keeps everyone happy!


Featured Image by Rendy Novantino

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