For more than 25 years, Debbie Zoller has been creating makeup looks from practically every vantage point, whether it's her initial work as Lancôme rep at Macy's in LA, her 1960s-style creations on Mad Men, or most recently, her role as lead makeup artist on Castle. "People on the show are so incredibly nice," she said during a recent interview, where we talked about the gory details of her current position, along with what it's like to be a part of the behind-the-scenes action on the crime dramedy, now in its second year of production.
Check out some of Zoller's work in the gallery above. Then, to find out what she had to say about working with the cast, along with some of her favorite beauty products, just keep reading.
On this season:
Last season, the shows were not as ambitious as these are. They’ve really amped up the volume. This season things are a lot bigger. The scripts are bigger. There’s a lot more twists and turns. There are really some amazing things. The episode we’re doing right now is based [on going] behind the scenes of New York Fashion Week. I’ve got lots of runway models and different designs for the runway fashion show.
On creating looks for the main characters:
Stana [Katic, who plays Detective Kate Beckett], the minute you start putting makeup on her, she starts to look like a model, because she’s 5'11", and they’ve got her in high heels. So, she looks like this glamazon. I have to be really careful because they want her to look like a New York cop. What I do is just make her look really classy, and at the same time, try and make her look effortless. I focus more on her skin, and keep her skin really nice and fresh and youthful.
On working with men:
I have all the guys using the Art of Shaving. I give them all the kits, so they can shave at home. I use a lot of Clinique for the guys, too, because they seem to understand it. If I give them anything too complicated, they won't use it.
Do you have a favorite brand?
I love Crème de la Mer for moisturizers. And, depending on which actor, I do a little basket of products for them, depending on their skin type. We use a lot of Crème de la Mer moisturizers, like the Lifting Face Serum and Intensifier, hand creams, and the lip balm, which are great. I also use Kate Somerville — the Deep Tissue Repair and the Line Release — so it smooths out the skin and you can put makeup on top of it, and it glides really nicely.
Stay tuned for more from Zoller on how she got her start in the biz, along with her advice on breaking into the industry.