A Beauty Products Essentials List for Prom Night—Straight From a Celeb Makeup Artist!

Victoria Moorhouse
PaulGrecaud / Getty Images

PaulGrecaud / Getty Images

On any given day, shopping in the makeup aisles of Sephora or your local drugstore can be one of those out-of-mind experiences where you realize that even though you’ve been staring at the same spot on the mascara wall for 10 minutes, you haven’t actually read any of the details. Makeup shopping gets tiresome and confusing, especially when you’re picking up goods for a specific event, in which case the pressure to find just the right formula is ON. Example? Prom.

After many inspirational slideshows undoubtedly, you’ve narrowed your beauty look down, confirmed it’s complementing your dress, and are ready to stock up on the stuff to create it. If you’re stumped on the types of products that will perform on prom night, we get you. There’s a lot to choose from, and sometimes you want to hear affirmations from users and experts before you make the cash commitment. Money doesn’t grow on trees—as your $300 prom dress might confirm that. To narrow down some safe makeup choices that will help you feel your best, we caught up with celebrity makeup artist Amber Dreadon—who works on amazing stars from Lorde to Bethany Mota—and got the scoop on some of her faves from eye makeup to foundation that will last all night.

When completing an eye makeup look for prom night, what are your go-to products to create a really cool look that will last all night?

I always like to keep the eyes warm and glowing, so I tend to rely heavily on my basics.
MAC Prolongwear Paintpot in “Groundwork”—a great base for eyeshadow that looks great on its own or layered underneath powder shadows for super long-wear.
Kevyn Aucoin Loose Shimmer Shadow in “Selenite”—these little pots of goodness are the ultimate finishing touch to any eyelid for a shimmer so fine it almost looks wet.
Anastasia Of Beverly Hills Brow Whiz Pencil—the easiest way to lightly define the brows. Choose a shade lighter than your natural hair color, as it will always look darker between the brows!
Sisley So Intense MascaraI love this mascara applied to curled eyelashes. You get definition without the clumps and can apply a few layers for more volume. The small comb brush is also a whiz at getting to those fine lower lashes and right to the lash line.
Stila Stay All Day Liquid Eyelinerthis is my absolute go-to for a clean liquid liner that won’t move at all! The black is an essential, but it also comes in so many fun shades so you can match your eyeliner to your dress!

MORE: 15 Essential Tips for Doing Your Own Prom Makeup Like a Pro

What is an easy way for girls who wear glasses to update their look for prom?
Glasses are great, but for big beauty nights like prom, they can get in the way of letting your face shine. Try swapping out glasses for contact lenses for a beautiful frame-free look. I really like the product range from ACUVUE Brand Contact Lenses. If you don’t usually wear contact lenses, visit your eye doctor in advance of prom to make sure you’re totally comfortable in your lenses and to give yourself time to practice your makeup. Just be sure to insert your lenses first before applying any makeup.

What’s your go-to for blush? Do you have any facial products that add a good pop of color or shimmer to the cheeks or complexion?
I love to use cream blush, as it looks like your own skin. The same goes for highlights. My fave combo for blush and highlights is the NARS Matte Multiple in “Anguilla” with NARS Multiple in “Copacabana.”

When it comes down to foundation—do you have any suggestions for a night of dancing? Are there any favorites you use on your clients?
The best thing to remember with foundation is to not wear too much, as the more you wear the more there is to sweat off! Often, a light-weight foundation like Dior Skin Nude Air Foundation will be all you need to even out redness in the skin and a concealer like MAC Studio Finish will be the little extra for covering any spots. No need to go heavy over the whole face! I use the Dior foundation for red carpet, as it still looks like luminous skin but has a slightly matte finish so it stays on all day and night.

Lip color is always so hard. You don’t want to worry about constantly touching up during the night. What are your favorite products for long-wear lip color?
A long-wearing bold lip is so much easier to wear these days thanks to amazing technology in lipsticks! I like to start with a base of MAC Pro Longwear Lip Pencil all over the lip, and then I go for a super matte lip color like Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks that come in the coolest shades!

What should anyone going to prom have in their clutch for emergency makeup touch-ups?
A cute compact mirror, a lipstick to touch up with, and blotting papers to press against the skin if you get a little shiny.

MORE: How to Highlight Your Facial Features For Prom