MILAN — Daniel Martin’s talent is complemented by his lively personality.
Martin, who trained under Pat McGrath and is a Dior brand ambassador, is known to be the man behind the beauty looks of many celebrities, including Elizabeth Moss, Gemma Chan, Michelle Yeoh, Nina Dobrev and Olivia Palermo. He also worked with Jessica Alba for five years before being tapped as chief color consultant of the actress’ makeup and skin-care label Honest Beauty. In town for the European launch of the brand, Martin shared beauty hacks and his favorite memory about working on Meghan Markle’s most important makeup look: the one of her wedding day.
WWD: How do you conceive a makeup look for your clients?
Daniel Martin: A lot of times I start from the personality. If they come to me and they are not a very big makeup wearer, I automatically know that whatever I use on them is more like an accessory. So if they are very plain, they don’t like a lot of fuss but they want to look like finished, I kind of figure out what feature is it on their faces they are more comfortable with. So if they have like very beautiful bright eyes, then maybe that’s something I focus on, or if they have a very strong lip that’s what I focus on. It’s kind of assessing their personality and understanding what they are most comfortable in to figure out the feature that you want to [enhance].
WWD: Which are the three key products a woman has to have in her makeup bag?
D.M.: Oh, that’s a really good question. Mascara, definitely, because you can use that also as eyeliner, it’s just one element that really pops when you see it. A lipstick that you can wear also on your cheeks, so more like a neutral lipstick, and a concealer that you can turn it into a foundation. It’s always going to be multipurpose product: The women that I know just don’t want a fuss, so they want to be able to use a multitask and I feel these three can definitely cross over.
WWD: Do you have any beauty hack to suggest?
D.M.: Tapping a flat brush into the mascara brush and apply the product as an eyeliner at the base of the lashes. You don’t see the skin and it makes lashes look fuller. Plus I use the primer to tame eyebrows because it dries clear and it doesn’t move.
WWD: Do you prefer to use brushes or your fingers?
D.M.: I do both. I do eye shadow with my fingers because there’s something about picking out the pigment and laying it down and melding it with natural oils of the eye that gives your eye that really cool multi texture. That’s something that I learned working with Pat. And then with foundation, depending on skin type, I press the foundation into the skin. So especially with the cream foundation I can warm it up in my hands and I literally push it into the skin, just because you need that heat to melt it but it also gives that finish of really beautiful radiance, that sometimes you can’t get that with a brush.
WWD: What’s your favorite memory of doing Meghan Markle’s makeup on her wedding day?
D.M.: My favorite memory was getting her ready with her mother and her dog and we were just really hanging in her bedroom. I wasn’t nervous because we’ve been friends for so long. She just wanted to look as natural and beautiful as possible and we didn’t do a makeup trial, we didn’t have any time just because she was already in London and I was working, so we did everything through Pinterest pictures and texts.
WWD: Beside Honest Beauty and Dior, which are the other projects you’re working on?
D.M.: I did a collaboration with Cuyana, and actually Jessica [Alba] introduced me to them. Last Christmas I did a makeup bag for them, so now we’re doing another collection.
More from WWD:
WATCH: How to Recreate Meghan Markle’s Royal Wedding Messy Bun