Hair, Makeup and Styling Blog

STRICTLY SPEAKING: LISA ARMSTRONG

It's on with the show for Strictly, this year, even if it means some strictly social distancing fo dancers and celebs. But one thing's for sure, Strictly Come Dancing will never lose its sparkle thanks to our award-winning artist and Head of Makeup for Strictly, Lisa Armstrong, who recently gave a glittering account of life behind the scenes to Matthew Bell for the Royal Television Society Magazine

There's plenty of blood (fake for Halloween), sweat (the boys!) and tears (tissues at the ready) for Lisa working as Head of Makeup on Strictly Come Dancing, winner of the last year's prestigious Craft & Design Award for Makeup Design for Entertainment and Non Drama. 

So what, Matthew asks, makes a successful makeup artist? The answer, according to Lisa, is not just having three cases full of glitter, eyelashes, nail polish, body shimmer and lip gloss for Strictly plus being able to keep a steady hand with the eyeliner.  It's  having 'personal as well as technical skills', making celebs not only look amazing but feel good too, plus being on hand with emergency supplies be it deodorant as 'the boys, sweat like you wouldn’t believe' or tissues for all those tears.

It's also hard work, Lisa tells Matthew, 'On a Saturday, we start at 8.30am and wrap at 11.30pm. During the day, the celebs and their partners are constantly rehearsing and whizzing around the dance floor: the rollers are flying out, the lip-gloss is getting smudged and the eyelashes are hanging off.'

It means coordination with other departments, 'Costume, staging and lighting. You’re running up and down the corridor, talking with the costume department to ensure the dancers look just right. You work with each other, not against each other. We are a big family.'

Read the full interview with Lisa here.