How the no-makeup look on 'GoT' is done

 

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In the spellbinding world of Game of Thrones, everyone is good-looking. The cast of a TV show hasn’t been so uniformly attractive since Gossip Girl, a series about beautiful, rich adolescents who know that they’re beautiful. The men have chiselledjawlines and dark, brooding eyes; the women have lush, shiny hair (often woven into complicated braids) and cheekbones that could cut glass.

But there’s a caveat for GoT characters that doesn’t apply to many other shows, which is that each actor must look completely makeup-free — even in the most unforgiving of HD settings. The plot of the series loosely parallels the real-life War of the Roses, a series of wars that went down between two rival branches of the royal House of Plantagenet as they fought for control of the throne of England.



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© Photo: Macall B. Polay/Courtesy of HBO.
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Based on that estimate, Game of Thrones would have taken place in the mid- to late 1400s, had there been dragons and White Walkers at that time. The first recorded skin-care brand, Yardley London, was not founded for another 300 years, in 1770.



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© Photo: Helen Sloan/Courtesy of HBO.
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One must ask: How, then, did the Starks and Lannisters maintain their flawless complexions? Was it a lack of environmental pollutants and antibiotic-laced chicken? Did all the hot air rising off Daenerys Targaryen’s fire-breathing dragons act like a pore-purging steam treatment? Did they drink more than the recommended daily amount of water? Was it just good genes?

When I asked Sophie Turner, who plays the newly-tenacious Sansa Stark on the HBO show, how the Game of Thrones characters are given their 15th-century glow during an interview about something else entirely, she told me that there’s no revelatory on-set beauty secret — it’s just proper skin care with plenty of moisturiser, and maybe a bit of concealer here and there where needed. In a 2015 interview with Yahoo Beauty, lead makeup artist Jane Walker echoed this statement. “Good skin is the best base for the ‘no makeup’ look,” she said.



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© Photo: Macall B. Polay/Courtesy of HBO.
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And there you have it. The number-one best way to get skin that looks perfectly clear and poreless on hi-def television is to start with skin that’s clear and poreless in the first place. Add Kryolan Dermacolor where needed, and go take back that goddamn throne.

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