Being the makeup- and beauty-obsessed child and preteen that I was, I used to comb through my monthly magazine subscriptions—think Allure, Cosmo, InStyle, and more—and cut out every last product recommendation and piece of advice from the most elite makeup artists. Said cutouts would then be pasted into a precociously detailed scrapbook/binder situation, and eventually, I'd refer to them the next time I begged my mom to take me to Sephora. (Clearly, I've found the right career path.)
Well, pinch me, because I now get to meet and interview all of those legendary makeup artists I used to read about and worship, and sometimes, I even get to be a fly on the wall as they work their magic and prep A-list clientele before events and red carpets. While I no longer have that ancient filing system from my youth, I do keep a detailed brain log of the It products I see used again and again by the best makeup pros in the business—whether they're skin-prep essentials or long-lasting makeup staples. And below, I'm sharing! Keep scrolling for 20 beauty items all of the industry's best makeup artists absolutely love.
I've honestly lost track of the number of makeup artists who use this creamy eye shadow (specifically in the shade Groundwork) as both a primer and a shadow to add subtle definition and depth to the eye area.
The name doesn't lie! According to makeup artists, there's no better formula for seriously thick and voluminous lashes than the icon, Monsieur Big. Plus, you'll get smudge- and flake-free wear for a full 24 hours, so let the shenanigans roll without having to worry about touch-ups.
There are quite a few skincare staples from Caudalie that makeup artists routinely vouch for, but this beautifying mist is one that comes up again and again. It sets makeup, zips up pores, and gives the complexion a pretty veil of luminosity—no highlighter needed.
Every makeup artist (and so many celebs) I've talked to absolutely fawns over this beloved cream bronzer from Chanel. It's a unique, featherlight cream-gel hybrid that boasts a highly blendable, velvet-matte finish, so your sun-kissed glow will look 100% natural and not like it came from a makeup product.
A more beloved foundation among makeup artists does not exist. The formula provides oil-free coverage with the most beautiful and satiny of finishes.
I've heard from multiple makeup artists that this two-in-one bronze and highlight palette frequently "goes missing" when they're working with celeb clients. The universally flattering shades are created from a refined golden base that suits all skin tones, and the carefully designed ratio of pearl and golden pigments deliver an unparalleled glow.
Pre-makeup, you'll often spot celebrities lounging around their hotel suites wearing these hyaluronic acid–enriched eye masks. Why? They help plump fine lines and revive the eye area in roughly 10 minutes, making them ideal for makeup prep.
Say what you like about the price, but no other rose water spray can compete with this expert-approved pick, and you'll find it on the vanities and in the kits of makeup artists and beauty editors alike. The fact that it contains 100% of the rare Rose de Mai, including the total extract of the petals and all of its precious essential oils, is what separates it from all others.
Even though we may reach for a foundation to give ourselves a bit more coverage, we still want our skin to look like skin. This iconic oil-free gel formula is frequently used on movie and TV sets (ahem, Euphoria) to ensure A-list peeps have flawless skin sans any product detection.
Makeup artists love this creamy mask from Sisley Paris because it provides instant gratification in terms of bouncy, energized-looking skin. Even the dullest, hungover complexion (e.g., me every Sunday morning) doesn't stand a chance against potent anti-aging and antioxidant-rich ingredients in this mask.
There's nothing worse than foundation or concealer that looks cakey, dry, and desert-like around the delicate eye area. Makeup artists like to apply this super-famous eye concentrate pre-makeup to instantly troubleshoot dark circles, wrinkles, and dryness.
Makeup artists always extol the importance of skin prep, explaining that your makeup is only going to look as good as your skin allows it to. So many pros use Augustinus Bader's cult-loved Rich Cream to give their clients an intense dose of moisture and a natural hit of radiance. File this under "beauty products that are worth the price tag."