Have you finished The Defenders yet? Marvel’s new Netflix show, which brings together its superhero stars, including my personal favorite Jessica Jones. Makeup is probably the last thing you thought about while binging the debut season’s eight episodes, and it’s supposed to be like that.
“This is invisible makeup,” says Sarit Klein, the makeup department head for The Defenders. “It’s part of the character, so I like the skin to show. I don’t want someone to have full-coverage makeup on because, it will distract. I want the fans to watch the show and relate to the characters and not say, ‘his neck and his face don’t match’ or ‘this person has too much makeup on.’ To me, less is more, especially for guys.” Klein worked on all the Marvel shows on Netflix, so she’s well acquainted with this idea of invisible makeup. Even though she doesn’t want people wondering what blush or lipstick Jessica Jones is wearing, I, and other beauty-loving viewers, definitely were. So of course, I had to ask Klein all about the essential products that make up Jessica Jones’s badass look, as well as the other characters on the Marvel shows.
Jessica Jones appears not only on her namesake show and The Defenders, but also Luke Cage. How does her look range from show to show?
“We tried to keep it consistent because it’s a shared universe. In Jessica Jones, she’s a badass. She doesn’t care what she looks like. To keep it continuous, in general, we keep it as simple as possible, knowing that I’m gonna need to do her in The Defenders and now that we’re shooting Jessica Jones season two. Obviously, there’s a little bit of evolving when she gets bruises or cuts. Those change because she does have healing powers. But the basic look stays the same.”
Which are the literal hero products that make up Jessica Jones’s look?
So her eyes, surprisingly, she does not have eye shadow on. She just has a couple coats of the Diorshow Mascara, and the top liner is the M.A.C. Fluidline in Blacktrack, and the bottom one is the Charlotte Tilbury Rock ‘n’ Kohl in Bedroom Black. That’s nice because I can kind of smudge it to give her the edgy, rock ‘n’ roll look. And for her lips — everyone always asks me what’s on her lips. Her lips are naturally so pigmented that she goes in between a cherry chapstick and the
How long does Jessica Jones’s makeup really take to do?
“We shoot 12-hour days, so we try to get her in and out as fast as possible. We can pretty much do everything in 15 minutes. We tag team while she’s in hair, and even if it’s not perfect, it’s okay because Jessica Jones isn’t perfect.”
Who takes the longest amount of time?
“Madame Gao because she’s aged. Every skin part has stretch-and-stipple technique. She spends about an hour in the makeup chair with two people. We age every part of her skin that you see on camera, and we hand-paint the age spots on her face and on her hands.”
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What is it like bringing comic-book characters to life?
“The looks were loosely based on the comic books because Marvel wanted to create more realistic, dark, nitty gritty shows. Also, my makeup was made knowing each show was going have a different color palette. Jessica Jones was more of the blue/purple color palette. Daredevil was more red. Luke Cage was yellow; Iron Fist was green. My makeup just enhances the characters, and now I know what works with each color palette and its filters. We even did a couple tests with the blood on Daredevil just to know what color matches and doesn’t stand out too much with the red tone of the show.”
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How do you help the makeup stay put during action scenes?
“We’re there with them throughout the whole day, so we’re able to check the monitors, especially when there’s close ups. We’re able to go in and adjust. But I try to do most of the work in the trailer to prep the skin and use products that have longevity. We’ll obviously check after every take, but to try to minimize that, we’ll do a lot of things in the trailer. For instance, we use Ben Nye’s Final Seal or Blue Marble SeLr Spray, knowing that a stunt person or an actor is going to do a couple-hour fight or stunt. But there are a lot of other products out there that will last all day.”
What it was like working with Sigourney Weaver, who plays Alexandra?
“Sigourney’s a legend. Working with her was a wonderful, wonderful experience. She’s just so generous, lovely, and humble. Her makeup and hair was about an hour and a half in the trailer for her — just to make her look a little bit more evil. On a daily basis, she does not wear a lot of makeup. I created a little bit of a harsher brow. She usually likes to keep it very simple. I definitely did a bolder eye, so we smoked it up a little bit.”
How do you create Claire Temple’s no-makeup makeup look?
“She’s a nurse. She works at night, sometimes during the day, and in Iron Fist, she went with him to China. So with her, it was about being as real as possible. She does have a full face on, though. Let’s start with the eyes. I used the Make Up For Ever Eyeshadows. The liner is one of the Aqua XL Color Paints to make it stay all day long. She loves the Tarte Lights, Camera, Lashes Mascara. Concealer on her, I actually like to use a combination of things. I like to use the Clé de Peau, as well, but I also like to correct with the Bobbi Brown Peach Under Eye Corrector. The foundation on her was a mixture of Black Opal and the Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Foundation. Then I used a little bit of powder — the Golden Orange from Bobbi Brown. That’s the perfect color for highlighting darker skin tones or a quick set. And the blush, again, we used the HD Make Up For Ever.”
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Now, watch Emily Ratajkowski transform into Sophia Loren:
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