What it was really like to work on The Bachelor

Images via Channel 10.

You may not have heard, but it’s The Bachelor finale tonight. Our office is buzzing, the champagne is chilling, and we’re all debating about who will get the final rose. Will it be Sam? Will it be Lisa? Does it even matter? Not at all, but for those who are interested – that’s you because you’re reading this – we spoke to The Bachelor’s head makeup artist Helen Dowsley for all the behind-the-scenes gossip, including Louise’s killer red lipstick, the best tear-proof mascara and if the girls got along.

1. Do the girls choose their own makeup looks? Or submit themselves to the makeup artists chair?……

At the start of the show I sit down with the girls and talk about what we want to achieve and that’s to make them look the best that they can be. I explain that in “post” makeup can look a lot heavier as the colour is saturated so its important for them to listen to my direction. As a woman I know its important to be heard and have a say. I want the girls to feel the best they have ever felt. In saying that when you becomes quite nervous they can start to apply way too much makeup. I’m there to back her away from the brush and move on. I never said no to them but I was able to direct them to a better, more appealing look at times.

2. Were there any disagreements over the same lipstick or look?

For a reality show I feel it’s important to show the real woman, keep it as natural as possible and talk to them to see what makes them comfortable. Some girls don’t have a clue on how to apply makeup, so my team and I would be there to help them to learn to apply and I loved it when the other girls in the house would see the difference in their look and compliment them. Of course there were disagreements in one’s look at times, that’s only natural. Women tend to be quite hard on themselves and if one looks good with a  look then another could think it would work for her. Generally after a good chat and a cuppa I would find out the real issue, move on and have them looking the best they can be without copying others.

3. Ok, spill what is the bright red lipstick Louise wore for most of the series? We’re in love with it.

Yes a lot of people have commented on Louise’ luscious lips, I used Face Atelier Red Fuscia, it’s a very matt lipstick so can cause a bit of dryness but Lou would always take good direction and drink lots of water throughout the day to hydrate. Occasionally I would put a touch of Perry’s Myrtle lemon lip balm over the top to bring them back to life, It’s an Australian brand and everyone loves it when I apply it.

4. The lipstick on the show seems to have serious staying power through dinner dates, dirty street pies and rose ceremony cocktails. How do we make our lipstick last that long?

Being a reality show most of the times I apply the makeup then leave it to the girls to touch up throughout the day. The Rose Ceremony was a little different as at times there were tears, champagne to be drunk and dancing to be had. Wearing a strong lip, it's best to apply the same coloured lip pencil  over entire lip then apply the lip colour.

To get lipstick to stay longer, each morning when brushing your teeth lightly brush your lips to rid any dead cells to take away the dry look on your lips. My favourite lipsticks are Face Atelier and Make Up For Ever, which have a great range from stay-ons to more moisturised formulations in every-toned red, browns and oranges.


5. What are some of your favourite products you used throughout the filming?

My favourite of all product is Koh Gen Go foundation and if you have an olive based tone skin I am a fan of their yellow based primer, it gives the skin a glow that is second to none. If you have more of a cool tone skin then use the colourless or green pre-base. It gives the illusion of a newborn's skin.

Makeup needs to be placed on a well prepped skin, Dr Spiller is my “go to” skin care. Throughout this season I was applying their collagen cream on most skins and I always start with their toner to get the ph balance right. I can never finish a makeup look without eyelashes and so on every girl my own Helen Dowsley lashes were applied. I liked Laurina to have a cleaner look so I used a fine liner, sculptured skin and I would “stack” my lashes on “Favourites” with “Fablash” – amazing. With Jess I would give her more of a natural look so I used “Beautiful” on her. Lisa and Sam love my “Newloves” and Louise would rock my “Partylash” really well.

6. Since it gets a bit emotional on the show, what are some of the best tear-proof mascara/s you used?

My favourite of all time is Makeup Forever called “Aqua Smokey Lash”…….and of course there were always my lashes on top and sometimes on the bottom to avoid any smudge lines.

7. How long do you get to the girls ready for the rose ceremonies?

In a perfect world I would have like 1 1/2 hours, but there are dresses to try on, pieces to camera to do and sometimes there were tears as it was very emotional for the girls. I have the best team in the business so any roadblocks we endured on the day we would just all work together to get the girls looking and most importantly feeling the best they have ever been. To answer your question, 45 minutes to 1 1/2 hours per girl.

8. Ok spill, what was it really like to work on the show?

Everyone of those lovely ladies have a fun side to them, some are quirky, some are more serious but all were an absolute delight to be with. I spent many hours with them and I must say truly I miss each and every one of them. Obviously Lisa, Louise and Sam had a longer time together and travelled to beautiful South Africa, so I feel very connected to them. I miss Lisa bursting into my room with pure enthusiasm, Sam trying to tell me a funny story when she couldn't stop snorting while laughing and Louise being so caring and thoughtful.

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