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Global Beauty Q&A

Apr 04, 2014

World-renowned beauty expert, best-selling author and entrepreneur Shalini Vadhera-Potts shares her coveted spring beauty secrets and talks about her journey to becoming one of the most sought-after celebrity makeup artists.

From the beaches of South America to the deserts of North India, every region of the world holds beauty secrets and Shalini Vadhera-Potts has made it her mission to uncover them and share them with women everywhere. In 2006, she published her first book, Passport to Beauty: Secrets and Tips from Around the World for Becoming a Global Goddess, solidifying her reputation as the leading expert of international beauty trends.

Vadhera-Potts has since gone on to launch her own cosmetics company (valued at $21 million US), and continues to be a leading celebrity makeup artist, having worked with A-listers like Mallika Sherawat, Simon Cowell, Nina Dobrev and Alec Baldwin. She also brings her beauty expertise to television with frequent appearances on The Dr. Oz Show, The Today Show, The View and Extra, and is in high demand to consult for brands like Olay and Revlon. And, she still manages to travel the world in search of new ingredients, cultures, trends and beauty secrets.

We caught up with Vadhera-Potts to find out the best secret she’s discovered, what trends have been catching her eye this season and how you can perfect the look yourself at home.

Soriyya Bawa: When did you realize your true calling as a beauty professional?
Shalini Vadhera-Potts: It was the first makeover I ever did. I didn’t really know how to apply makeup yet, but I had a customer come to the counter and ask for a makeover. To make it even harder, that was the time when we had to use cotton balls and Q-tips to apply makeup, not makeup brushes. So, I did my best. The next day, I received a bouquet of flowers and a card that read, “Thank you for bringing back my wife. She is going through cancer and you made her feel beautiful again.” From that day, I knew I wanted to be in beauty and have a positive effect on women.

SB: What inspired you to take on the task of uncovering global beauty secrets?
SVP: It was my love for travel and my curiosity about why women look a certain way from country to country.

SB: What’s the best global beauty secret you’ve uncovered so far?
SVP: My favourite is still from the Dominican Republic. They know the secret to harder-than-acrylic nails is chopping fresh garlic and adding it to a bottle of clear nail polish. They let it stew for a week and when they polish their nails the concoction makes their nails break-proof.

SB: How has the concept of global beauty changed or evolved over the years?
SVP: It’s become very on-trend right now. You can’t buy any makeup line without seeing some element of global ingredients in at least one of their products. I believe with social media, the world has become so small that we can see what women are doing in other countries and we want to try it.

SB: What are your favourite beauty trends for this spring?
SVP: I love almost all of them. I love the glowing skin and the cat eyes. My favourite is the pop of colour on the lids, like turquoise and green. And I love the berry lips.

SB: Orange lips and turquoise eyes were popular beauty trends on the runway this season — what’s the best way for South Asian women to rock bright colours like this?
SVP: For South Asian women, it’s about accenting versus making it the main theme of your makeup. You can add turquoise on your lid as a wash and then use a bronze or charcoal in the crease to blend it out and make it more neutral. I also love turquoise as eyeliner. For lips, use a warmer tone of orange or melon. If you’re unsure about the colour, opt for a gloss.

SB: What are your tips for transitioning from winter to spring makeup?
SVP: Lighten up! Use gloss instead of lipstick. Opt for a lightweight foundation — I love the Diorskin Airflash Spray Foundation. Try crème blushers versus powders — I like Avon Be Blushed Cheek Color. Have fun with colours; pink and peach are stunning on Indian skin.

SB: What are your tips for transitioning from a winter skin care routine to a spring one?
SVP: Again, lighten up. You most likely don’t need as heavy of a moisturizer as you did in winter. Make sure to exfoliate a few times a week to remove any dry, dead skin from the winter. Use a serum at night to work on fading unwanted spots and lines.

SB: What are the most common makeup mistakes you’ve noticed?
SVP: Too much makeup! Pick one feature and make it pop.

PHOTO COURTESY OF SHALINI VADHERA-POTTS
PHOTOGRAPHY COURTESY OF SHALINI VADHERA-POTTS 

PUBLISHED IN THE BEAUTY ISSUE, SPRING/APRIL 2014

Soriyya Bawa

Soriyya Bawa

Author

Soriyya Bawa has been featured in national publications including ANOKHI Magazine Tribute Magazine and Canadian Family Magazine. Soriyya currently works as a freelance writer and editor based in Toronto, Ontario and also specializes in customized web content and socia...

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