The craft of makeup may seem as simple as applying a swatch of color on the lips but those passionate about perfecting artistry including Beautyblender Creator and seasoned celebrity makeup artist Rea Ann Silva know there is far more detail than what meets the naked eye.
Revolutionizing the idea of airbrushed makeup that looked flawless during the age of HD cameras- Rea Ann used her knowledge and innovative thinking to develop the now iconic Beautyblender sponge. Since then, many brands have tried to duplicate her genius product but without comparison to the streamlined signature versatility of the Original Beautyblender! It was my pleasure to attend a launch party for the newest addition to the Beautyblender family, sur.facepro Tuesday night @ Planet Dailies Mixology 101 in Los Angeles.
My first impression? The sur.facepro provides a quick, hygienic & modern approach to makeup matching and mixing that is user friendly for both makeup pros and makeup addicts. I predict this will become the newest beauty tool obsession!
At the cocktail party, I ran into some beauties including the one and only gorgeous Rea Ann Silva, Z Palette Creator Zena Shteysel who also is Makeup Department Head of Dancing With the Stars, The Beautyblender Pro Team and talented young artist Brett Brette Sims who sketched a gorgeous portrait of me of course holding an Original Beautyblender.
With Beautyblender Creator Rea Ann Silva (Bummed about this weird lighting situation!)
The Beautiful Zena, Creator of the Zpalette.
Me getting touched up with the Beautyblender Pro Team.
With artist Brette Sims who designed this incredible portrait!
This fun event brought music, makeup and playful smiles with a mixology class showcasing the cocktail of the night – a sur.face pro.tini. I am excited to play with my new Beautyblender tools and will do a full review on Examiner.com once I give the sur.facepro a proper test run. Discover the complete range of Beautyblender at Sephora.
After not wearing lashes for a few weeks, I decided to get creative w my makeup & add top and bottom lashes today. Though it sounds like a lot of lash- a couple colleagues and a personal client all commented that they looked quite natural even up close. The secret? Choose lashes with a very thin ‘invisible’ stip and apply them as close to the natural lash line as possible.
This image was taken on reverse camera with my iPhone 5 (no filter so excuse the shine on my nose), and no flash after wearing my makeup for a good 6 hours.
I used Kiss trio individual lashes ‘x-short’ on the bottom and Eyelure Naturalites ‘lengthening’ strip lashes on top secured with Lashgrip ‘dark’ lash glue.
&&& for the less daring, here are a few tips to remember when applying false lashes.
1. First tight line the top lash line w a black waterproof pencil and soften the eyeliner with a flat eye brush. This will help to camouflage the false lashes whether you choose individuals or strip eyelashes.
2. Curl lashes (if you have Asian lashes like mine this is essential!). Plump lashes with a primer – my favorite is Lash Maximizer by Dior, scroll down a few posts to read my review. Top eyelashes off with a couple coats of mascara before placing false eyelashes to prevent spider eyes.
3. Typically, a minimal amount of lash glue will do the trick. Apply a thin layer of glue onto the strip then wait 20 seconds for the glue to get tacky. Applying lashes when glue is too wet will make a big sticky mess!
4. I only use tweezers when applying individual lashes because I find it easier to use my own fingers. Do what feels more comfortable as long as the lash strip is directly on the lash line with no space between natural and faux lash lines.
5. Finish by pinching natural and false lashes together and curl once more if necessary.
*** always keep lash glue handy when wearing falsies – just in case!
Makeup for photos is a tricky art to master as there are varying factors that contribute to the finished product. This morning, I had the pleasure of glamming up a few young beauties for their Senior photos. I often am asked for tips on how to look good in photos so I thought I would share a few makeup tips that translate as flawless in photos and in real life.
But first, here are my beautiful clients (no filter photos) taken with my iPhone5:
On this gorgeous girl, I prepped the skin with a healthy spritz of Caudalie Beauty Elixir, cotton pads saturated with Le Couvent De Minimes 3 in 1 Rose Micellar Water, Smashbox Photo Finish Hydrating Primer & Dr. Hauschka eye cream. Primed eyes with Nars Pro Prime Eyshadow base, Urban Decay Peversion 24/7 pencil smudged into the lash line, shadows from Mehron Makeup Eye Palette & false eyelash strips from Ardell. In her brows I used a Yaby Cosmetics eyeshadow powder applied with an angle brush from Makeup Forever and added a small amount of Eyeko Brow Gel. On the lips is Jurlique Love Balm, Cinema Secrets Lip Pencil and a Dior Addict Lipstick. I finished the complexion with a mix of Chantecaille Future Skin foundations, Bobbi Brown Peach Corrector, Cover FX matte bronzer, Chantecaille blush and Graftobian Loose Powder. The finished look? A naturally soft, bronzed skin with a neutral eye.
I kept the makeup clean and accentuated her big eyes and ivory skin using hints of subtle color. On the eyes, I layered a navy blue ‘Sabbath’ 24/7 eye pencil from Urban Decay with a combo of a matte navy and matte brown eyeshadow to create definition at the lash line. I used an iridescent pale gold plus a soft grey through both from Chantecaille on the eyelids, a bronzer from Edward Bess in the crease and applied a generous amount of L’Oreal waterproof Voluminous Mascara on her naturally long lashes. Through the brows is Makeup Forever Aqua Brows and Eyeko Brow Gel. The skin was primed with Benefit Cosmetics The Porefessional Primer and a few drops of One Love Organics Morning Glory Brightening Complexion Booster mixed into Chantecaille Future Skin Foundation. To perfect the skin, I used Koh Gen Do Moisture concealer, Cover FX matte bronzer and La Femme Blush. On the Lips is a Makeup Forever Aqua Lip Liner, Jurlique Love Balm and Dior gloss.
I filled in these beautiful brows with a tiny amount of Yaby Cosmetics cake liner since she wanted to focus on her eyes and created a soft focus winged eyeshdow using a few shades from Mehron Makeup and Urban Decay playing with pearlescent shades through the center of the eyelid and matte taupe through the crease plus a pair of natural eyelashes from Ardell. Along the bottom lash line, I smudged a bit of Butter London Eye Pencil. On her skin, I used Benefit Cosmetics The Porefessional Primer first, then applied Becca Cosmetics Radiant Skin Satin Foundation and Illamasqua Skin Base Lift to brighten the center of the face. To warm up her naturally bronzed complexion, I used Jane Iredale Mineral pressed foundation in a deep shade, Chantecaille Ectasy Blush and Becca Cosmetics Shimmering skin Perfector Pressed in Topaz on the tops of her cheeks. For the lips, I mixed Vbeaute lip Spread, Cinima Secrets lip pencil and a Maybelline lipstick to create a glossy berry pout.
&&& now some makeup tips for looking fab in photos:
1. Take time to prep your skin with appropriate moisturizer & primer depending on your skin type. You don’t want a beautiful, bold eye with a blotchy complexion. Real life flawless skin can often look red or uneven on camera since flushed skin or pigmentation can peek through.
2. Steer clear away from products with titanium, zinc or mica (commonly found in foundations, spf and powders). These ingredients flashback white/grey leaving an ashy cast on the skin.
3. Camera flashes and even natural lighting can make the skin look like a flat plane so use a light hand and build up intensity on the eyes, lips and cheeks a little more than an average makeup day to create dimension on the face; otherwise your best features will disappear!
4. Take a test photo with your phone – with and without flash – to make sure your total makeup look is looking blended where it needs to be and defined where you want definition. If it’s not looking right, fix it before you go on your way.
5. Once you finish your makeup (or your makeup artist is finished applying all the products) look in a hand held mirror and in a mirror further away – like in your bathroom or in a floor length mirror. You will know immediately if you desire any edits.
6. Make sure your face, neck, chest and whatever exposed skin is seen looks uniform in color…. self explanatory!
What are your best kept secrets to looking good in photos?
Without a doubt, the number one question clients ask me is what foundation I use because they often comment that my skin is so clear. My immediate answer is that I do have a top rotation of foundations that I love (planning on doing a foundation favorites post soon) depending on where I’m going, how long my day is and what look I’m going for but truthfully it’s not my foundation but my obsession with skincare that keeps my complexion looking fresh.
“classic Rochelle” bold lip, glowing skin & a well groomed brows.
In the morning, my skin care philosophy revolves around two major thoughts: instant hydration and longterm protection. Even with a bare minimum timeframe to get ready, I always prep skin with a few trusty products. Work mornings I wake up first and bring my daughter to school which means a micellular water followed by a face mist for a fast and efficient cleansing routine. The cleansing water instantly removes residual dead skin and impurities that may appear (summer skin means night sweat and constantly changing skin texture) and a face mist helps with antibacterial and re-hydrating purposes. Once I take her to school, I start getting ready by applying a serum, moisturizer, eye cream and a straight sun protection shield.
My current morning skin care favorites:
I purchased Le Couvent des Minimes 3 In 1 Micellar Water with 3 Beneficial Roses on an impulse ‘add to cart’ click when shopping on beauty.com and enjoyed it so much that there is a second bottle in my makeup kit for use on clients. It’s no secret I have a rose obsession and this one has a mild aroma of rose petals while leaving the skin comfortably purified.
Caudalie Beauty Elixir was a product I used to see pop up all over professional makeup artist recommendations in different beauty magazines but was never compelled to try it. The invigorating mint and signature organic grape water blend perfectly to wake up the skin on tired mornings. It can also be used to refresh makeup mid-day but I mainly use it to perk up my skin before applying any treatment products.
Chantecaille Stress Repair Eye Concentrate Tired eyes are always a struggle as a mom and working professional. This creamy eye concentrate has a lovely texture and is infused with anti-puffiness, wrinkle fighting and dark circle relief via caffeine and plant stem cells. Yes, please.
I recently fell in love with ORGO skincare all over again from initially trying it out last year. As with anything in my beauty stash I don’t always use the products as intended. The 7 days a week treatment set is a rotation of serums you are basically supposed to change daily in order to introduce new nutrients to the skin. Currently, I’ve been using the ‘Friday’ Oxygen Infusion Serum every morning instead of every Friday and it’s keeping my skin looking youthful and hydrated.
Chantecaille Rose De Mai Creme A new product launch, the Chantecaille Rose De Mai Creme has the perfect melt into the skin cooling feel that skin craves during summer season. It contains naturally antibacterial and vitamin C from the Rose De Mai flower, probiotics for environmental protection and plant stem cells to fight aging.
Chantecaille Ultra Sun Protection SPF 50 Primer There is no doubt driving all over Socal exposes my skin to the sun on the daily and my belief in a straight sunscreen over moisturizer is always an essential every morning. The broad spectrum SPF 50 protects skin from UVA and UVB rays and the unique texture and finish of this product leaves skin looking healthy, smooth and plump without an ashy white sunscreen residue.
This entire routine literally takes five minutes and makes a major point of difference when applying makeup. Applying foundation on top of any skin type without a proper skin prep can lead to makeup meltdown, products clinging to dry spots and a not so flawless longevity throughout the day. No makeup primer or foundation in the world can magically make change the appearance of poor skincare habits.
If time permits, a face mask is always a morning treat which I leave on 10-45 minutes while completing other tasks – cleaning, styling my hair, nail polish change, mom/ wife duties – the usual.
My favorite Morning face masks stimulate the skin by increasing clarity, hydration level and circulation. Currently, the Josh Rosebrook Cacao Antioxidant Mask (which I reviewed in a previous post) and Jurlique Rose Moisture Plus Moisturizing Cream Mask are what I reach for when I have some extra pampering minutes. Josh Rosebrook Cacao Antioxidant Mask is amazing for mornings when skin may feel puffy or appear dull. It instantly increases blood flow leaving skin with a youthful glow. Jurlique Rose Moisture Plus Moisturizing Cream Mask has a gorgeous aromatherapy quality to calm the senses and provides a major surge of hydration.
Stay tuned for a “Good Night Beautiful Skin” post revealing my night time best skin care practices.
One of the highlights of June was attending a beauty editor and beauty blogger press event featuring a few of my favorite things: eyelashes, great sunglasses and a lighthearted chat with two incredible beauty industry leaders.
Allergan and LATISSE® hosted an event at Warby Parker at The Standard Hotel in Hollywood where I had the pleasure of meeting Celebrity Makeup Artist Brigitte Reiss-Andersen and top dermatologist Dr Jessica Wu. It was a joy to meet these two powerful ladies who of course were gorgeous, eloquent speakers and so sweet. Listening to Brigitte talk about her legendary career painting faces for iconic Vogue magazine covers, high fashion editorials and working side by side with the most respected designers was an unreal experience. Her persona is genuine and her energy is inspiring! Dr. Jessica Wu was a sweet surprise as she speaks with such passion about her journey building her education and high profile following at her Brentwood office.
Latisse is the premium solution to obtaining full, healthy lashes without the damaging aftermath that lash extensions and false eyelash strips cause. Boosting a youthful appearance with the benefits of increased lash density, volume and length can be achieved through Latisse and I cannot wait to give it a try! More to come on my Latisse journey coming soon.
Here is a quick photo diary from the event.
Legendary Makeup Artist Brigitte Reiss-Andersen and I after we chatted about the controversy behind ‘Instagram Eyebrows’ and her favorite memories working behind the scenes with Mr Yves Saint Laurent.
Dr. Jessica Wu speaking to her personal experience of working on the 1st clinical trials of Latisse and her tips on navigating modern anti-aging.
Visit the Latisse Website for further info on how to get beautiful lashes in just a few weeks! For a pair of new sunnies, shop the Warby Parker at The Standard Hotel and follow @brigittemakeup and @jessicawu on Instagram for daily beauty inspiration. Also, a quick thank you to Jamie from Lippe Taylor PR for the gracious invitation.
For a working professional in the beauty industry in both the editorial media and makeup artisty sectors, a bad skin day is totally unfavorable.
After spending time away from home in Palm Springs for a much needed mini-vacation with family and a recent windy night at the beach, my skin is understandably feeling out of sync. 105 degree heat and gusty dry air are a couple rare factors that bring my normally fresh skin into a not so pleasant appearances. Currently, my complexion has been suffering from dehydration and a couple small breakouts.
I’ve fallen in love with two life-changing face masks that literally improve the skin’s appearance overnight: Josh Rosebrook Cacao Antioxidant Face Mask and Elemis Lavender Herbal Face Mask.
When used once or twice a week, these two powerful products reverse the signs of problematic skin without any type of irritation.
Josh Rosebrook Cacao Antioxidant Face Mask is a rather new discovery in my skincare arsenal. Made with a happy skin formula of potent antioxidants and organic ingredients it is a perfect addition to my beauty routine. It purifies and refines the skin’s texture while offering a youthful, refreshed comfortably firm look that brings instant gratification especially after a bad skin day. Apply all over clean skin, let the mask work it’s magic for 30-45 minutes and rinse off! The post face mask result is a noticeably healthy glow to the complexion.
Elemis Lavender Herbal Face Mask is a great treat for skin needing a quick turnaround from breakouts, oily spells and other unmentionable clogged pore problems. The spa-like aromas of rosemary, lavender and thyme essential oils make for an enjoyable at home facial via a creamy supple face mask. For sensitive noses, I do have to mention the natural scent is a bit intense during the first application but the results are worth enduring the vibrant lavender sensorial experience.
As far as physical coverage, the foundation I reach for when my skin needs some extra love is Becca Cosmetics Ultimate Coverage Complexion Creme. The formula is the idea texture and pigmented beautifully to camouflage skin without a heavy feeling heavy. Testing out foundations is something I often do to update my own beauty routine for myself and also my kit for personal clients. What I love most about this particular Becca Cosmetics Foundation is that the color range is flexible and the fluid creates a gorgeous canvas that makes for a flawless skin every time.
What is your go-to product arsenal for problem skin?
I recently had the pleasure of doing makeup for Louraine, a beautiful bride who celebrated her wedding with longtime love Chris at Hotel Maya in Long Beach. Being a Socal native, it was surprising I had never seen this unique Hotel with a serene view of the famous Queen Mary and Long Beach Harbor. Thankfully, the temperatures dropped from the 100 degree heat wave in the weeks prior allowing the quiet summer sky look over the day so everyone in attendance could enjoy the peaceful atmosphere. Louraine found my makeup services on Thumbtack and we immediately clicked with her joyful laugh and sincere personality. She sent me a few first images from her photographer, Jose Maestas which all look gorgeous and I had to share.
Adding final touches before photos plus a great shot of my beauty arsenal.
I brought out Louraine’s beautiful eyes and kept the skin glowing, fresh & flawless.
Pictured below all makeup by me on sisters and Mother of the Bride.
& a beautiful shot of the bride with her best friend. I created a bold purple lip, soft contour and big lashes for her.
Have an upcoming wedding? Please email me email@example.com or click the “book me’ tab on the menu above to inquire about my makeup services. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.josemphoto.com to inquire about Jose’s photography services.
Two things that put a smile on my face is a great chat with passionate people and a pair of charming British accents. Last week, I had the pleasure of attending a desk side chat with Daksha Chikhal and David Delport from REN Skincare. Since I’ve always had a fascination with the UK’s incredible blogging culture, REN skincare has been a brand in my radar of products to try thanks to Caroline Hirons. (If you love skincare, she is the queen of breaking down skincare regimens and you must check out her blog! )
Focusing on a philosophy of merging pure ingredients with the expertise of an in house biochemist and cosmetologist, REN Skincare stands out as brand truly serving immediate benefits and complexity of results.
Pioneering the trend for using clean face and body treatments the brand offers a complete range of products with natural essential oils, floral waters, Acidic regenerating acids and Bio Extracts made for all skin concerns including anti-aging, blemish control, radiance boosting, detoxifying and various targeted products to suit both men and women. For the daily makeup wearers, there is the Rosa Centifolia™ colletion of maximum efficacy cleansing products that purify the skin from 100% natural Rose Extract Complex in every desired texture: a hot cloth cleanser (which I’m so excited to try!), a traditional cleansing gel, cleansing foam, 3-1 Cleansing Water, Express Makeup Remover, Gentle Exfoliating Cleanser and No. 1 Cleansing Balm. A firm believer in clarified skin = more youthful skin, a complete selection of daily cleansers is a plus in my book.
Most impressive is a quite unique approach to treating skin while still using naturally derived ingredients. A new launch coming September 2014, the Flash Rinse 1 Minute Facial is a high potency water activated Vitamin C treatment that refines the skin’s overall appearance immediately. It’s an absolute essential for a Socal woman like me who lives up and down the 405 freeway. the Flash Rinse 1 Minute Facial reduces the effects of environmental ‘urban grey’ cast on the skin and minimizes signs of sun damage and fine lines and other unfortunate skin imperfections that come with aging.
Is it me or has this last month been extra busy? I feel like I haven’t had a moment to reflect on some of my latest clients. Thankfully, my calendar has been filled with many new makeup clients for prom, weddings and special occasions taking me all over SoCal with all my favorite luxury makeup favorites in my kit within the last few weeks. I just wanted to do a quick post with a few of my favorite makeup looks I’ve done:
Above is a couple soft eye looks for a wedding coordinator, bridesmaid and mother of the bride. I’m planning to post a full makeup post on this bridal party once I get some photos back from their amazing photographer. I used mostly Anastasia Beverly Hills, Chantecaille, Dior and Becca Cosmetics to achieve the looks above.
My client was celebrating her birthday and usually wears a soft neutral work makeup. She said ‘let’s go for it’ and we played with jewel tones to complement her beautiful skin. I used a combination of OCC Makeup, Chantecaille, Urban Decay and Makeup Forever to create her ultra-glam look.
This natural beauty has gorgeous eyes and wanted a celebrity inspired makeup look. I used soft bronze and rich browns from Cargo Cosmetics to accentuate her eyes, Tarte Foundation and Dior on her lips. She was ready for Prom!
More to come with photos of my recent makeup work. Are you ready for the weekend? Happy Friday!
With the right tools, anyone can recreate a perfectly contoured and highlighted complexion without playing with extreme photo-tricks.
Probably the biggest mistake is applying too much product at once! Thin layers and building intensity where desired is the key to looking flawless on camera and in real life. Of course, product choice and application method contribute to the end result but using small amounts of product makes a major point of difference between amateur and professional results. Unless you plan to be on stage or under harsh editorial studio lighting, less is always more.
The images above are not filtered/photo shopped, just some old fashioned blending!
1. Prep the skin per usual with appropriate skincare and primer first to perfect the base. (More on my current skin care faves coming soon).
2. Next, perfect the skin. My current foundation favorite is Chantecaille Future Skin Foundation. is a buildable coverage botanical based foundation that gives a skin-like appearance with a weightless texture. I dampen my Beauty Blender with Caudalie Beauty Elixir and bounce the sponge all over my skin. I typically only use about less than a nickel size of the foundation, dot it on the center of my cheeks, chin, forehead and nose then blend well until the product looks invisible.
3. If you are anything like me, a multi-tasking always on the go mom/wife/working professional, dark circles are always an issue. Use a color corrector to illuminate and bring life back to tired eyes. I’m loving Bobbi Brown Tinted Eye Brightener – see my last post for a more in depth review. Apply in an inverted triangular shape directly below the bottom lash line and extend out to the lower temples.
4. Highlight the parts of the face you want to emphasize. I reach for Cle De Peau Concealer Stick because it’s very pigmented and easy to apply. Apply a thin sweep of this below the eye brightener, in the center of the forehead. Sometimes I apply this on the bridge of my nose and the middle of my chin but in the photos in this post, I was suffering from a minor cold and did not want my nose to be a focal point from constant sneezing.
5. Blend, blend, blend! My take on highlighting is to look glowing and fresh faced without a mess of sparkling glitter. I believe the skin should look like skin. Spritz the Beauty Blender once more with Caudalie Beauty Elixir and use the pointed end of the sponge under the eyes and the rounded end every where else you placed the lighter shades. Blending is quick but it gives the complexion a natural transition instead of harsh demarcation lines. Taking that extra few seconds to smooth the areas between the highlight and base makeup is what perfects the skin.
6. Use a contouring shade along the hollows of the cheeks to add shape to the face, at the high temples of the forehead and below the jaw line. As mentioned above, in the photos below I did not what to do anything special on my nose because I was having irritation from sneezing/congestion but I sometimes slim my nose with a bit of contour and highlight. In general, I use either the Makeup Forever Cream Camouflage Palette #4 (pictured in the images in this post), OCC Makeup Conceal in a deeper shade or Sleek Makeup Cream Foundation. I like to pick up the cream with e.l.f.’s small stipple brush and apply a very deep color in the hollow of my cheek and on the temples. I then place a deep but slightly lighter shade right above the darkest shade on the cheeks and blend with small circular motions with the same stippling brush until the product looks smooth. Using two deep shades makes for a smoother blend.
The images above is not filtered/photoshopped & is taken with a flash.
Since I typically am not a fan of contouring/highlighting with powders as I find them to look too dry and overly made up, I use all cream products and set with a fine translucent loose powder in the center of the face if I’m just working on myself. The photos shown in the post, I used a small amount of Koh Gen Do UV Powder applied with a fan brush. Generally, my makeup wears well and don’t have a problem with makeup migrating or separating but on my clients I set the skin with a deep powder over the contours and a translucent shade over the highlighted areas with a loose bristle brush and light patting strokes.
*This probably sounds like a long process but on average, this takes me less than ten minutes in the morning.