I prefer a more natural look, which means I spend as much time doing what they call “blending” - which is really just taking strategic parts of the makeup *off *- as I do putting it on. But some women don’t blend as much, and that’s when you get the war paint look. Or they choose a color that looked wonderful under the lights in the bathroom/dressing room, but the studio lights are a different color and make it look weird.
And yes, High Def really had a huge impact on makeup for television! From what I understand (although it’s been a while since I’ve checked in on the industry) HD caused a lot of makeup people to switch to airbrushes for makeup, because airbrushed makeup can be done so it’s more blended and thinner on the skin. Old pancake and liquid makeup looked great before HD, but with HD it looks goopy and goofy.
OH! “Is it really needed?” Yes, according to current standards of what looks pretty. When we’re young and makeup free, the capillaries in our cheeks give our cheeks some pinkish tones naturally. When we laugh, or we’re sexually aroused, this pink deepens, and is considered very attractive. So we use blush or rouge to create a look that people subconsciously associate with us being in a pleasurable state.
Makeup has fashions just like clothes. It may go in and come out, and exactly where you’re supposed to put in on your cheek changes with fashion, and the exact colors change with fashion and even how much you blend it changes with fashion. For example, the 1920’s had specific makeup fashions we don’t share at the moment. In the 20’s in the US, blush was often orange, placed right up front on the apple of the cheek, and applied in a circle with very little blending. Today, it would look clownlike. Then some people thought it looked beautiful, while others, I’m sure, grumbled that it looked like war paint.
And at the extreme end of the scale, you have stage makeup, which looks absolutely ghastly close-up. But over-accentuating facial features is what you need, to make expressions recognizable from the other end of an auditorium.
IIRC, TV makeup has some similar considerations; it’s supposed to make someone look more natural when seen on camera in a studio, but doesn’t look good in person. HD is probably closer to “in person”; WhyNot mentioned that they’ve been changing the makeup they use because of HD.
Here’s an example of one of the (non-industry) articles that was going around in 2008, when the switch over to HDTV was looking less like a fad and more like something that was going to stick around:HD is unforgiving to actors, and makeup artists
And, of course, now just 5 years later, you can buy airbrush makeup kits for home use. Technology marches on…
I remember learning how to put stage makeup on when I acted in community theatre years ago. I looked in the mirror and my narcissistic side came out immediately. I mean really! I remember thinking to myself, "Lord! I wish I could look like this all the time!
Yup. I once saw a photo of (IIRC) Nicki Minaj that someone was commenting on, asking how she could wear such a horrible makeup job - she had big patches of differing foundation colors in various places on her face, including around the eyes, cheekbones, and down the sides of her nose. If you know anything about makeup, it was obvious that it was either her in stage makeup or partway through a makeup job where they were doing contouring and hadn’t done any blending/shading yet.