ELLE Expert: Aditi Rao Hydari’s Makeup Artist Elton J Fernandez Reveals Secrets About Her Signature Makeup Look

Ever since I watched the trailer of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Heeramandi: The Diamond Bazaar, I was certain that I’d finish it in one watch. There’s something about witnessing Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s maximalist vision come to life. While every character in the show had their own story to tell, I was gripped by Bibbojaan’s character, played by Aditi Rao Hydari. Strong-willed yet kind, rebellious yet composed—Hydari’s performance stood out and how. Apart from her stellar performances, I’ve always been in awe of her radiant makeup looks, something she sported in her latest Heeramandi: The Diamond Bazaar too.

Championing the less is more cause, Hydari’s no-makeup-makeup look will always remain classic. There’s something about her bare face, perfectly tamed eyebrows and natural lips that will never go out of style. When it comes to makeup, I enjoy my dramatic eyeshadow, draped blush and statement lips—but every time I take a look at Hydari on screen or Instagram, I’m convinced to do otherwise.

There’s nothing you can’t like about this signature makeup look. While this may look easy to recreate, makeup enthusiasts everywhere know that the fresh-faced look isn’t all that simple to recreate. As someone who’s struggled with ensuring her makeup looks natural, I know exactly how tough it is. Luckily, Elton J Fernandez who is Hydari’s go-to makeup artist decided to spill the beans on how he achieves this particular look with ease.

Aditi Rao Hydari


Here’s everything you need to know about recreating Hydari’s makeup look.

Skin prep

When it comes to her makeup specifically, Fernandez only ever uses moisturisers or creams. He has a preference towards creams because they’re richer in texture, more emollient and create a smooth base for the makeup to be layered on. Creams also don’t get absorbed too soon or sucked into the skin, something that works for Hydari’s skin. By staying away from primers, Fernandez shows us that you don’t always have to follow what the Internet says about beauty.


Initially, he used to work on her eyebrows, however, over the years Hydari has learnt how to fill them in herself. Most of us have certain pet peeves and things we’re particular about when it comes to beauty and for the Heermandi: The Diamond Bazaar actress, eyebrows happen to be one of them. Nevertheless, there are times when Fernandez fills them in for her too and when he does so, they’re soft and romantic with a blurred edge. He does this by blending two different colours so that you can’t see any sharpness in there

Base & Blush

Championing the less is more cause with her base makeup, Fernandez opts for concealer first. He makes it a point to apply it to the inner corners of the face. The foundation is only ever used in minimal quantity if it’s required. We’ve always known that underpainting is the ultimate technique that promises you naturally flushed makeup. Fernandez embraces it for Hydari’s makeup too! After the concealer application, he goes on to apply liquid blush and cream contour on the high points of her face. While the formats of these products are still creamy, he blends them all out with a brush. He advises opting for liquid or cream products if you’re looking for a subdued look since they blend seamlessly into your skin.


With lashes, Fernandez has a special way of application which gives her those dreamy lashes. Instead of using mascara all over the eyelashes, he prefers applying it on her central lashes instead of applying it end to end. This gives the eyes a doe-eyed and soft effect, a go-to for Hydari.

Finishing touches

A trick to making your cream makeup last all day is layering it with powdered makeup. Fernandez goes in with powdered blush and contour over the cream so that it strengthens the wear and colour.


Lastly, on Hydari’s lips, they always opt for nudes and browns since she gravitates towards them. Fernandez begins by lining her lips with a lip liner and then goes on to fill it with a lip balm, lip oil or sheer lipstick—whatever’s at hand.

“There’s no specific formula I follow with Aditi, nor is there any fixed idea or notion of how we want things to be done. We’re always flowing together because we trust each other’s aesthetics and craft,” Fernandez tells us.

- Beauty Writer


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