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We preach the importance of performance makeup and although we know that you trust us, we thought you might want to hear from the people who really matterthe judges.

We know that you work endlessly to create a lasting impression on them; you create a truly innovative routine, you perfect your moves, gel your hair, clean your shoes and wear your boldest lip. But have you ever wondered what they really think about your team’s stage presence? What do they like? What do they not like? Do they have any advice for you?

We asked them a few of our most pressing questions, and here’s what the had to say —


‘Make it represent your piece and your age. There is a difference in maturity in a 7 year old vs a 16 year old and the makeup chosen should reflect that. Yes we as judges want the dancers makeup to highlight their features onstage; however, we also believe there is a fine line between too much and too little. It’s best to think about what the age of the dancer is and what the story of the piece is. This will help guide what makeup choices are necessary’.
Courtney Belair Ogle, Xtreme Dance Champions

‘Keep it consistent with their team mates’
Laurie Jamieson, Xtreme Dance Champions

‘If I notice that an entire group of dancers is either completely unified in their makeup/ hair/ accessories I take that into positive consideration when scoring. If I notice an entire group of dancers has made the effort to change their makeup to match the theme of their piece that is different from all of their other routines, now THAT is impressive!’
Sarah Chapman, Entertainment Manager for Disney Performers

‘I think it’s all about your eyes. You can add so much to your performance/dynamics in your piece just through the use of your eyes/eye lines.’
— Adam Martino, professional choreographer and adjudicator


‘I am personally not a fan of rhinestone eyelashes. I find the stage lights hit the rhinestones and create a glare. I want to see the dancers eyes so I can experience the emotion in their piece.’
— Courtney Belair Ogle, Xtreme Dance Champions

‘Red glitter lipstick is a big no from me, its distracting and not flattering’
—Laurie Jamieson, Xtreme Dance Champions

‘I think it is important to ensure that the look is as natural as possible. You don’t want the lights to wash you out of stage but also don’t want to look to fake. Also need to ensure your makeup is age appropriate’.
— Adam Martino, professional choreographer and adjudicator


As performers we are storytellers and that story is told through our emotions. As they say “the eyes are the window to the soul”. In order to experience that emotion first hand we need to enhance the makeup of th dancer so we can see all emotion and details. Whether it be false eyelashes, eye makeup or lipstick this will help us as judges see the dancer more clearly under the stage lights and help us connect with them in their piece.’
Courtney Belair Ogle, Xtreme Dance Champions

‘With stage lights being as bright as they are, dancers faces are washed out without make up to enhance their features!’
Laurie Jamieson, Xtreme Dance Champions

‘As a judge, we are often seated far back in the audience. As much as this allows us to see the big picture of a routine and formations, it can be a challenge to see the faces and expressions of the dancers. This is where stage makeup comes to the rescue! You can be the best performer in the world, but without makeup to accentuate your facial features, it will not do your routine justice.’
— Sarah Chapman, Entertainment Manager for Disney Performers

‘When dancers have clean/ well thought out performance makeup it ensures that they have the opportunity to bring out their facial features more consistently. This helps to define the storytelling in their pieces. ‘
Adam Martino, professional choreographer and adjudicator

One thing we know for sure, is that judges personal opinion is subjective. You will never be able to please the entire panel with your performance makeup choices, but you can certainly work towards a team look that is generally pleasing across an entire panel.

We’ve narrowed it down to these 4 key takeaways.
  1. Ensure you and your team are wearing stage makeup. The judges/audience cannot see you without it.
  2. Keep it uniform. Wearing the same makeup/colours across your team is effective and will lead to positive impression.
  3. Be age appropriate. {We suggest doing variations of the same look/colours for across your team sections}
  4. BE CREATIVE. Use your makeup as an extension of the story you are telling through your routine. Use makeup as the final touch to pull it all together.

Time to implement an effective, uniform look for your team? Send us an email to get all set up with our customized service, today.

Photo credits: The Dance District

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