On TV Land’s Younger, Liza (Sutton Foster), a 40-year-old divorcee with the desire to restart her publishing career, finds it incredibly difficult to land a job without being a millennial. Her solution: pretending to be 26. While trimming 14 years off your age may seem like a stretch, she’s successful due to one major factor: her ageless skin.
Of course, there’s a lot more that goes into the intricate lie Liza has crafted, but Foster’s youthful, glowing skin is what makes the premise believable. Seeing Foster’s skin shine onscreen in Younger is an inspiration to everyone to treat their skin with the respect it truly deserves.
We spoke with Eldo Ray Estes, makeup department head of Younger, to find out the secret to Foster's perfect skin on-screen.
“We used a lot of colors and we used a lot of fun things,” Estes tells Byrdie via phone, regarding the approach to Foster’s makeup on the show. “We used pinks and purples and colors and sparkles. I also used a foundation on Sutton that has a reflective quality to it. The light bounces off of it, so it makes her look radiant and glowy.” The foundation he swears by? Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Moisture Foundation ($77) in Shade 23 for Foster.
Estes explains that Foster’s makeup has changed and evolved over the years. Her makeup now is much more relaxed than it was during season one, with less bright and shiny colors.
“As the show has progressed and more people know that Liza is not 26, there’s less of a difference between her 26-year-old look and her everyday look,” he says.
Estes has been in the beauty industry for more than 20 years, working on shows such as Orange Is the New Black, Blue Bloods, and As The World Turns. With years of experience, he is well versed in skincare and how vital it is in making actors' skin look amazing on camera.
“Skin is what it’s all about. The makeup is great, but if you don’t have great skin under it, the makeup’s not going to really do the trick.”
So what exactly is the trick to great skin? According to Estes, there's no shortcut. “I think a lot of people want quick fixes. The thing that I’ve always said since the very beginning is that it’s not necessarily what you use, it’s that you actually use it. Skincare has to be really regimented. No matter how tired you are at the end of the day, you’ve got to wash the day off of your face.”
“The cleansing factor is the most important,” Estes continues. While his personal cleansing routine is more complicated, the benefits are remarkable. “I use a different cleanser in the morning than what I use at night: I use something foamy in the morning because it wakes up your skin, refreshes your skin, feels great, and perks you up.”
Once you have a solid cleansing routine, start regularly using products such as moisturizer (both a day and night brand), night cream, toner, and antioxidant serum. “I use something that’s more creamy at night because it really cuts the oil and grime off your face,” he tells me. When used together each day, these products will rejuvenate, refresh and brighten your skin.
Some of Estes’s other favorite products are face masks and exfoliating scrubs. “I’m a big believer in exfoliating. A scrub that’s really fine and gentle is good.”
Estes reveals that one of his favorite skincare lines is Skyn ICELAND, which he was introduced to by Foster. All of the company’s products are not only 100% vegan and not tested on animals, but are also free of all harsh chemicals.
“They have a lot of niche products for special things that can fit in with whatever your skincare routine is. They make something called the Nordic Skin Peel ($45), and they’re these little exfoliating pads. I love those because they’re easy and they’re not abrasive on your skin.” [Ed note: Team Byrdie also loves the brand's Hydrogel Eye Patches, $18, which brighten dark circles and plump up wrinkles in just a few minutes.]
For getting skin that is as luminous as Foster's on the show, Estes says the key is to start early. “I think it’s important for young women and young men to get in the habit of taking care of their skin in their early 20s and adhering to it because it really does make a difference," he says. "People think that I am 15 years younger than I am or more, but it really is about my [skincare] diligence, and I really enjoy it,” Estes says.