How Scott Barnes Moved To NYC With $300 And Built A Makeup Empire

scott barnes

Glam stopped by the house of celebrity makeup artist Scott Barnes to pick his brain about beginning his career, his makeup line, and, yes, his relationship with longtime client Jennifer Lopez.

“I moved to New York with my $300 and box of records,” he says.

Barnes originally began his career in New York City as a painter and worked primarily in the fine art world. This foundation (no pun intended) helped start his career in makeup.

Barnes got his first job as a photographer’s assistant and would trade the photographer his time for the ability to use the his studio as a place to paint. The photographer was the first person to convince Barnes to try his hand at makeup and collaborate on a shoot together.

“Reluctantly, I did it,” Barnes says. “I was terrible.”

Then, the photographer gave Barnes another piece of advice. He suggested that Barnes do makeup in the same way that he painted. From there, Barnes’ career really started to take off.

“First, it was Famke Janssen,” Barnes says. “Then, it was like the next day, I’d get a phone call and it was Julianne Moore.”

From there, Barnes began working with Gwyneth Paltrow, while she was doing press for Shakespeare in Love. Eventually, he started working with Jennifer Lopez, one of his most famous and enduring relationships.

“Jennifer and I spent 11 years together,” Barnes says. “In Hollywood, that’s the equivalent of being a dinosaur.”

Lopez helped provide the cover art of Barnes’ book, About Face: Amazing Transformations Using the Secrets of the Top Celebrity Makeup Artist.

scott barnes

After years of perfecting his art, Barnes began working on a makeup line that now anybody can take home with them. Some of his products include Body Bling, which helps you achieve the J. Lo glow, and face brushes, which are each designed specifically for a certain product.

You can find Barnes’ products on his website and be sure to watch the video above to hear Glam’s entire interview with the makeup mogul.