An Insider’s Guide to Flawless Skin and Makeup with Kate Keogh

Creating flawless, radiant makeup is something Kate Keogh knows exactly how to accomplish. With over 10 years’ experience as a makeup artist, Kate has tried it all – big name makeup brands, boutique cosmetics and everything from natural looks through to theatre and stage makeup, creating gorgeous looks for hundreds of faces. Starting as a makeup artist at Mecca, Kate is now a freelance makeup artist specialising in bridal makeup. Here, the makeup master shares her love of the professional beauty industry, and why she is gravitating back to clinic skincare and makeup products for flawless skin.

What do you love about the makeup industry?

I love the feeling I get when my clients see their finished makeup look and they’re so thrilled and feel absolutely beautiful, it’s pretty amazing to be able to give someone that extra boost of confidence in themselves. As cliché as it sounds, I aim to enhance beauty without a full OTT transformation, particularly for weddings when brides still want to feel like themselves (just an extra-gorgeous version!).

What is your first makeup memory?

I was about 15, Mum noticed I was doing a terrible job of my makeup so she booked me in with her beauty therapist for a makeup lesson. It was actually such a great experience, she taught me how to use makeup brushes and create different looks, and she got me onto an incredible Quoi foundation that I wore for years. It was perfect for the “less is more” look, plus it was good for my skin.

You’ve worked with some big-name brands, what drove you to return to a skin clinic?

I think since working with big brands I’ve come full circle back to skin clinics because I’ve realised great makeup starts with great skin, and these days it’s all about a more glowing, natural look. I got married last year so I invested in results-driven skin treatments and a great skincare routine. Most people think this just means washing your face and moisturising each night, plus a collagen drink, but it’s so much more than that.

You need to educate yourself about what ingredients are in your skincare and if they’re active enough to actually improve your skin. Probeauty’s products have reignited my love for professional skincare, and I love how incredible my skin looks under my makeup now, I don’t have to cover as much up. When I realised I could also have a quality and high-performance foundation that nourishes my skin, I felt so much better adding it on top of all my lush skincare, rather than slathering on a thick foundation full of bad ingredients! And I love how these new foundations and primers look and wear, staying on all day and not clogging up my skin.

Tell us about 5 hero products you’re loving at the moment?

1. Suntegrity Impeccable Skin is perfect when I’m in a rush and need to even out my skin tone, it doesn’t require any special techniques and lasts so well throughout the day. This one really impresses me as I don’t feel like I have heavy makeup on, plus it has mineral SPF30 protection (and the sun is the number one cause of ageing skin!).

2. O Cosmedics 1Skin Foundation has also become a regular foundation in my makeup bag. This one has more coverage, and I love how it just melts into my skin and manages to look like real skin. I adore a natural look and this lasts all day or night, I never have to worry about topping it up. The best part is it’s full of natural, nourishing ingredients for my skin, so it feels good going on top of all my luxe skincare.

3. G&M Quinoa Lift & Hydrate Eye Cream is so smoothing under the eyes, I pop it on every morning to really nourish this delicate area (and fight signs of ageing!), and for a de-puffing action. I love that it doesn’t make my concealer move around, it just leaves my eye area hydrated and fresh. As a bonus the applicator is amazing – you can do a lymphatic massage if you’re feeling extra puffy!

4. O Cosmedics Native Collagen Eye Masks are my absolute hero product. I’ve used so many eye masks in my time, so when I first tried these I wasn’t expecting much. Wow, was I impressed when I pulled these off. They give a really amazing nourishing and de-puffing effect, ideal for before special events. Any brides to be out there – this is the product you need on your big day!

5. G&M Neurocosmedics Nutri-Luxe Cleansing Oil is another favourite, I really love this as my second cleanse. I love how hydrated it leaves my skin feeling, and it smells incredible.

Why is a consistent skin routine so important to achieve great makeup?

You can’t expect to use a miracle foundation that will do everything – smooth your pores, plump your skin, hydrate you and reduce fine lines – no makeup product does this. Great skin starts from a good skincare routine, and foundation looks best on great skin. It won’t happen overnight, just like you won’t get fit from one workout! You need to invest in products that are specialised for your skin and be patient while your skin adapts to using them, then enjoy the results.

Seek some advice from a professional skin clinic to find the right products for you, and once you’ve got this down it can be like a maintenance phase towards your dream skin. So many times in the makeup chair people would say, “I got this product because a friend/an influencer used it” but then they were breaking out because the product was not right for their specific skin needs. Over the years I’ve tried my fair share of products that were not right for my skin type and I’ve learned how important it is to invest in quality, active products that can make a real difference to your skin.

Kate is based in Wellington, you can see more of gorgeous work and contact her for bookings here: |

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