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Poll of the Month: Just A Little Mascara


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In your opinion, what species or specific character from any Star Trek series features the best makeup work?  

13 members have voted

  1. 1. In your opinion, what species or specific character from any Star Trek series features the best makeup work?

    • Trill
      1
    • Jem'Hadar
      3
    • Klingons
      0
    • Andorians
      3
    • Cardassians
      6
    • Someone else (Tell us more in the comments!)
      0


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The Star Trek franchise has always been known for its amazing make-up and prosthetic work. The franchise is also responsible for some of the most iconic alien races in science fiction.

Makeup artists from different series have been nominated for and won different awards for their work. In 2017, the Society of Makeup Artists awarded Nancie Langlois as their Lifetime Achievement Award recipient for her work on Star Trek: The Next Generation. Vanity Fair's Best Star Trek Makeup Artist Award goes to Joel Harlow. He has been nominated for his work on Star Trek: Beyond, Star Trek: Discovery, and Star Trek: The Next Generation. This is the first time the makeup artist has won the award. His work was praised for being "so good that it’s hard to tell where the prosthetic ends and the actor begins."

The best makeup artistry in the Star Trek series would have to go to Michael Westmore who has been working on the show since 1987. He has won five Emmy Awards for his work on Star Trek: The Next Generation and Star Trek: Voyager, as well as an Oscar for his work on James Cameron’s Avatar (2009).

The Andorian species in Star Trek: The Original Series is one example of a great makeup job. They have blue skin and antennae which were done in a way that was very believable and realistic for the time period it was made in. This is also true for their eyes which were done in such a way that they looked like they had eyelids.

Throw forward to the recent movies, and we find Joel Harlow and Don Lanning sculpting and designing the Reptilicus alien species—looking a little Cardassian—creating the scaled skin and ridges around the face to represent the curl of the ear. They look so life like, with their addition of amber-coloured reptilian eyes and sharpened teeth. 

We can't really say that there is a single character from any of the Star Trek series that features the best makeup artistry. It would be more accurate to say that all of them have some pretty impressive makeup artists.
 

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Though they weren't my favorites, I just want to give a shout out to the Remans. They really made them look like what I think a nocturnal species should look like.

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Once they added movement to the Andorian’s antennae, they seal the deal. Well done. 

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Even if it's a tight call for me due androrians antennae moving was ACE just how WELL cardassian make up worked and how iconic it is get my vote.

Saying this, and probably unpopular opinion, JJ aliens (mainly in Beyond) have some of the best make up i've seen on screen, i mean:

c72109999068246032b46eed3a896278.jpgstar-trek-beyond-make-up-oscars.jpg

http://blog.trekcore.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/beyond-aliens.jpg

 

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Cardassians for me, as a species.

I actually rate Saru highest but that's largely Doug Jones's doing. Other Kelpiens are impressive, but they're not Saru, so I have to put Cardassians over Kelpiens.

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  • 2 weeks later...

All of these are really tremendous answers but I was REALLY struck during my rewatch of Enterprise at just how emotive they Andorian prosthetics and makeup allowed the actors to be. 
 

that I always think is the real test of a Trek species makeup job. The ability to reflect the performance underneath. The Cardassian appliqués too do this wonderfully (eventually after a few patchy introductions in TNG lol). 
 

here recently I’ve also loved the Saurians on DISCO. They look just weird enough to be striking but not enough to distract in the scenes. 

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