Meet Rach's "Work Husband"

There are days when Rachael spends more time with Joe J. Simon, her makeup artist of seven years, than she does with her actual husband.
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There are days when Rachael spends more time with Joe J. Simon, her makeup artist of seven years, than she does with her actual husband.

Where she goes, Joe goes, and it’s his wizardry you see every time she is photographed for the magazine, tapes her TV show, steps out on the red carpet... you get the idea. 

Rachael Ray Joe Simon Book Tour

Joe and Rach after a long day on the road for a book tour.

Joe’s a 30-year veteran of the beauty biz, but he says his most useful skill in glamming up Rach is speed. “When she’s in the chair, there’s always a swirl of activity,” he says. “The show’s producers come in, her mom might call, maybe she’s having her hair done at the same time. One reason we’re simpatico is she knows I can work around all that—fast.” Rach admits she sometimes make Joe’s job tough. “It’s like he’s painting a moving target!” she says. But despite the madness, the two still have time to talk dogs— Rachael’s pit bull, Isaboo, and Joe’s Chihuahua, Alice— music and film. “We’re both old movie buffs. Rachael’s like a savant—she can quote tons of lines,” Joe says. 

Rachael Ray Getting Makeup Done by Joe Simon

Getting done up before appearing on a late-night talk show.

On a rare day when he wasn’t chasing her down for a touch-up, he gave us his tips for getting her signature “girl next door with a touch of rock ’n’ roll” look. It’s the next best thing to having a Joe of your own.                   

How does she get that skin?

Well, OK, she was born with it. But everybody needs a little help. “She likes me to keep the makeup as natural as I can, but it still has to be camera-ready,” Joe says.

Smith's Salve Armani Foundation Givenchy Concealer

Step 1: Hydration
Rachael moisturizes and dabs on eye cream before she even gets to Joe. “You should allow at least five minutes’ absorption time before you add foundation,” he says. For lips, Smith’s Rosebud Salve is Rachael’s go-to. “She has it in her bag at all times.” [1] Smith’s Rosebud Salve, $6

Step 2: Foundation
“No one’s face is a single shade all the time,” Joe says. To even out Rach’s skin tone, he combines two colors, adjusting the mix to account for her being slightly paler in the winter and tanner in the summer. [2] Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation, $64

Step 3: Correction
Joe dots and blends a concealer-brightener hybrid under her eyes, and because it’s one of the easiest ways to refresh Rach’s makeup throughout the day, he keeps it at the ready for touch-ups. [3] Givenchy Mister Light, $36

Can a non-pro do that smoky eye?

“Definitely,” Joe says.“Yes, the smoky eye is gorgeous and glamorous and timeless, but one of the main reasons I use it on Rachael is that it doesn’t have to be perfect. That’s key because she’s perpetually in motion.”

Jouer Eyeshadow Tom Ford Quad Urban Decay Eye Pencil L'Oreal Mascara

Step 1: Smooth
Eye shadow primers smooth the skin of the lid and help eye shadow stay in place. Joe uses a medium-brown cream shadow to do the same job and add depth and a little luminosity. “I don’t believe that old line that as you get older you can’t use products with sheen,” he says. [4] Jouer Crème Eyeshadow in Suede, $13

Step 2: Smoke
“I do a smoky eye in dark browns and neutrals,” says Joe. “The look works on everybody.” He uses a palette of brown shadows, applying the lightest shade at the inner corner of the eye, a medium one across the lid and a darker one in the crease. [5] Tom Ford Eye Quad in Cocoa Mirage, $82 

Step 3: Smudge
Next, he traces the lash line with liner pencils, dark brown for the lower and black for the top. He goes back to the shadow palette and uses a coordinating color to smudge the pencil lines. “That’s more forgiving and flattering than a sharp line.” The final touch: a couple of layers of mascara. [6] Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in Demolition, $20; [7] L’Oréal Paris Voluminous Carbon Black Mascara, $7.25

Rachael Ray Joe Simon Dressing Room

Outside the studio dressing room at the daytime show.

Rachael’s lip look—in 30 seconds!

“Rachael is a total gloss girl,” says Joe. “She loves it so much she calls me over to retouch her gloss even when she doesn’t need it.” 

Urban Decay Lip Pencil Dior Lip Gloss

Step 1: A Disappearing Line
With a lip pencil, trace along both lip lines. “I use a pinky, flesh-toned pencil and smudge that line inward a bit. This helps prevent the gloss from migrating o the lip.” [8] Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Lip Pencil in Liar, $20 

Step 2: Color and Shine
For lip color, Rachael’s “standby for everything” is Dior Addict Ultra-Gloss. “I like the consistency,” says Joe. “But also that the tube comes with a brush wand instead of a sponge that you have to dip in two or three times to get enough product.” [9] Dior Addict Ultra-Gloss in Spring Ball, $30