Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Vichy: Lift Activ Serum 10

In Spring 2011, Vichy Laboratoires launched Vichy LiftActiv Derm Source (Day & Night creams), their new anti-ageing skincare range. Today it has over 1 million women in Europe using it regularly. 

Why is it so popular? Here's the science bit. With 10 years of research, 6 scientific publications and 7 patents, scientists identified the layer of the dermis (skin), the Derm Source that alone commands the regeneration of the entire skin. And add to that the powerful anti-ageing properties of Rhamnose, derived from sugar and an active plant ingredient capable of reactivating the activity of the Derm Source.

Excited yet? Well you're going to get more excited if anti-ageing products are your thing! Come this winter, Vichy Laboratoires launches the matching serum: LiftActiv Serum 10 with an ultimate Rhamnose concentration of 10%.
Combined with the 10% Rhamnose is Vichy Thermal Spa Water (5%) rich in soothing and regenerating minerals. Ceremides which help speed up the penetration of the active ingredients and Hyaluronic Acid (4%) which helps draw moisture and hydrate are also potent ingredients of this potent serum.

The texture is a very light serum suitable even for sensitive skins, which melts into nothing on the skin and Vichy claims through extensive trials to give powerful lifting and anti ageing properties. LiftActiv Serum 10 is also paraben free and hypoallergenic. I can't wait to trial it out myself and on my more mature clients!

LiftActiv Serum 10 is launched nationwide 2nd November 2011 exclusive to Boots. RRP £29.50 for 30ml.

Although not launched till November 2011, I have been told that Boots.com is considering starting up a waiting list for those interested in trying this, so look out for it! I know I will!

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Brand Alert: UNE Natural Beauty

I will be the first to admit that I'm rarely excited by any organic brands. That's not to say that they're not good but as a MUA, often I need products that perform under demanding circumstances. And let's face it, no plant or naturally occurring ingredient will give me that acid pink lipstick or fluorescent green shadow! In the past, brands embracing the natural path have always fall short of performance in my opinion or the lack of colour variety. 

Anyway I chanced upon UNE a while ago while browsing through drugstores and then at an event for another brand. It looked good. Very good in fact. Packaging was attractive while still maintaining a professional sharp image. And when tested, the products were good!
25 Products, 148 Shades. That's what UNE promises and for any range that's a pretty good promise. It also endeavours to be 98-100% natural and most of the range is Ecocert certified organic. The products come in light, sleek recyclable containers that look really good. It reminds me of a sleek mobile phone device!

So let's make it simple for you, I shall attempt to categorize the range according to features and also skim through some of the items I have seen and tested so far that's made an impression. It's a big range so I won't cover everything, only key items that really attract me. If you want to see the whole range, look here.

Skin
UNE only does a 3 product range for skin: 
Radiance Refresh is a 3 in 1 Micellar Cleansing Water that removes makeup, purifies and tones the skin. RRP £7.99 for 150ml.
Radiance Reveal Day & Night Cream are the 2 moisturisers of the skincare range containing ingerdients like Moringa Seed Oil, Organic Aloe Vera, Shea Butter, Jojoba Oil and Mother-of-pearl. Textures are light and non-greasy so I would say great for a base for makeup.RRP £12.49 for 30ml.

Face
UNE does a variety of foundations in various textures and finishes. Mineral, Powder, Hydrating and Matte but what really caught my eye was the: 

Healthy Glow Enhancer 
Available in 6 Fresh, Glowing or Bronzing shades. RRP £9.99 for 30ml.
Perfect for those not wanting foundation, this provides a light veil of colour and I can see it being very handy for adjusting foundation colours or even mixed with moisturiser to add sheer colour.


Skin-Glow Pencil
Whilst designed as a concealing and highlighting pencil, for me it would make an excellent flesh toned pencil for inside the eye waterline. I dislike white pencils and it's hard to find one in the UK that's flesh-toned. Of course this can be used to highlight areas of face such as the Cupid's bow etc. 
Available in 4 shades, I only tried the lightest shade.RRP £6.99.

Breezy Cheeks Blush
In 8 very wearable shades, these cream-to-powder blushers are so easy to apply and blends to the most flattering of flushes. Gorgeous. RRP £8.99 for 3.4g mirror compact with brush applicator.

Eyes
Eyeshadows come in 3 formulations. Nothing that screams amazing but are extremely wearable.

6 Shades of Nude Eyes Shadow. A cream to powder texture to subtly enhance the natural colour of eyelids. RRP £8.99.

4 Shades of Glimmer Eyes Shadow. A creamy shimmer in gold, copper, silver and pink sheen. I personally think it'd be gorgeous as a highlighter for non moving parts of face where it won't crease too much. I'd love it patted onto brow bone or cheeks! RRP £8.99.

14 Shades of Sfumato Eyes Shadow. Talc-free, mineral-rich formulas give soft smokiness that can be built up. If intensity is needed, layer with pencils or kohls to really give it something to grasp onto and oomph! RRP £8.99.

Eye Brow Pencil
These come in 4 shades. I only tried one and as far as I could tell, the colour was good. Not too red and leaning towards the ashy tones which is perfect for blonds. The texture was good too, not too soft. RRP £4.99.

Lips
For the lips, there are :

11 Shades of Sheer Lip Gloss. Light and sheer, non sticky and moisturising. RRP £7.99.

8 Shades of Sheer Lips Balm. Sheer washes of colour in a nourishing balm provides subtle sheen to enhance natural lip colour. RRP £7.99.

15 Shades of Lip-Toned Colour.
A gorgeous selection of meltingly-wearable lip shades. None of your bright fuchsias or reds but if you're after something subtle and wearable, you'll find it here. RRP £7.99.

That's all that managed to grab my attention. UNE also does mascaras in various formulations, pencils and kohls and also brushes. To go into those would be impossible without actually trialling them. So if you're into natural organic makeup, I don't think you could go wrong with this range. Just remember if you're after bright colours or strong pigments, you'll do better with another brand but if what you're after are natural-enhancing colour cosmetics, UNE would be a good brand and place to start experimenting with.

Prices start from £4.99 to £13.99 and are available from Boots.

UNE: Intuitive Touch BB-Cream Foundation

If by now you're still asking what BB Creams are, then it's definitely time to brush up and do a bit of research. Blemish Balm (BB) are multi-use products combining skincare with makeup properties in one product that promises to help with a variety of problems. I won't go into what BB creams are as a quick search engine process will generate all answers!

Another brand launches their BB Cream in the UK. UNE. A French natural beauty company that promises a high performance range of products that are paraben-free, made from bio ingredients and almost totally natural. 

UNE Intuitive Touch BB-Cream Foundation 
Now what makes this latest BB Cream offering different? At first contact it's the texture. As far as I know, most BB Creams come in either a liquid or cream form. So it's quite interesting to see one that comes in compact form. Upon testing on my hand, I found the texture to be light and quite gorgeous. And although providing a matte finis, it had a lot of slip so I predict easy application either with fingers or with the very nice brush provided.

UNE is marketing it as a compact foundation that's a 7 in 1 product: Smoothing, Corrective, Moisturizing, Radiance Enhancing, Balancing, Nourishing and Protecting. A combination of Carnauba and Bees wax promises a melt into skin finish while Jojoba Seed oil and Shea Butter hydrates and moisturises. Skin is also kept matte "intuitively" by fine spherical particles of Rice Powder. The addition of the rare Maca Root, known for it's stimulating and toning properties fine-grounded with luminous Mother of pearl to bring radiance. Not a bad selection of ingredients and claims I must admit. 

It's also interesting to note that the usual SPF found in most BB Creams is not the case with the UNE BB-Cream Foundation. I asked about it and was informed that although no chemical SPF ingredients are added due to company policy, Intuitive Touch does contain natural sun protection screens with it's ingredients. So I would say wear it over your regular sunscreen or blocks.

Final thoughts. I like this product and I can see it being really handy for using on location shoots when you want a light coverage foundation with a slightly matte finish. And the texture is a gorgeous, smooth, creamy powderiness that blends and melts into skin. I was told that the creator of this product although not working for UNE anymore favoured the texture of Armani Luminous Silk Foundation and endeavoured to create UNE's BB Cream to have the same sort of slide and gorgeousness. Not bad and I can't wait to try it. 

So if natural products are your thing, I would definitely recommend this and check out the other products in the range, they're quite lovely!

Available in 6 shades and RRP £14.49.
Launched October 2011 and available from:
Boots, Boots.com, Superdrug, Lovelula.com and Wholefoods High Street Kensington.

Monday, 29 August 2011

Tangle Teezer: Hair Alert!

I have countless girl friends who swear by this little piece of plastic/rubber. Being the stubborn mule that I am, I was sceptical and refused to get myself one, although I did start to wane when I saw that hair guru Sam McKnight loved it as well so that was that!
After a week of looking at it on my dressing table and hesitating, I finally had a go today. What? Being brought up with countless beauty manuals saying not to brush hair whilst wet has made me really cautious. My hair is my pride of joy but maybe it's Bank Holiday Monday that's given me an extra pair so I decided to bite the bullet. 

Oh My Goodness! What genius!

I usually spend about 5 mins or so detangling after washing my hair but the Tangle Teezer slid through my wet hair like a hot knife through butter! No tugs, no tangles! I don't know how it does it but it does. I even went it the opposite direction and tried tangling my hair on purpose (what is wrong with me?) and it still did a remarkable job of detangling. 

Looking at the site, it claims to reduce hair breakage, splitting and damage due to less mistreatment of your hair. And I really do believe it! 

You can buy them online here for £12.24 for the Compact Styler (one above) or £10.20 for the Original Tangle Teezer. They also come in a variety of gorgeous colours.


Before/After: Colour Blocking/Fluoro Lips

It's been 3 weeks since I did one of these. Well I recently did a shoot where the clothes were all solid colour blocking. For those not in the know, colour blocking has been making it's presense quite known in fashion. It's basically what it is, solid blocking of colours! How has it filtered down to makeup? A trend of wearing stronger lip shades would be the obvious choice. So here's 2 ways of wearing strong brights.

Now many of you may argue that sure models look great with just an acid coloured lip but how does that transfer to us everyday normal people. I agree and yes many of my friends while adventurous would feel quite naked just having nothing but a strong lip. So I would advise a sheer veil of colour on the eyes. In this instance I chose a buffed in shading of antique gold. Anyway we're jumping ahead of ourselves. Meet Helena!
Skincare: La Roche-Posay Physiological Micellar 3 in 1 Solution, Sisley Botanical Floral Spray, Emma Hardie Hydrating Lighter Lotion, Lanolips 101 Ointment.

Helena had pretty normal skin with a few dry patches round the nose, and cheek and a few spots but nothing major. So I focused on massaging moisturiser into the drier areas after buffing with cotton pad soaked with micellar solution. Have a look at the after.
Face: Garnier Miracle Skin Perfector BB Cream in Light, Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage, YSL Touche Eclat.
Eyes: MAC Eye Kohl in Powersurge, Kevyn Aucoin The Sculpting Powder in Medium, Chanel Illusion D'Ombre in Phantasme, Paris Berlin Beige Pencil, Revitalash Volumizing Mascara and Primer.
Eyebrows: Anastasia Brow Wiz in Ash Blonde, MAC Clear Brow Fix.  
Cheeks: NARS Bronzing Multiple in Malaysia,  Chanel Joues Contraste in Orchid Rose.
Lips: MAC Lipstick in Violetta.
Powder: YSL Poudre Sur Mesure in Sand No 2.

Here's lipstick change No. 2.
Lips: OCC Lip Tars in NSFW and Traffic.

So what do you think? A few pointers to remember in making this look work. Keep the brows full and natural and not too drawn. Be free and not too precise with application to really keep the modern edge. And most importantly free your inhibitions and experiment! It's only makeup! As always comments and thoughts most welcome! 

Sunday, 21 August 2011

How To: Winged Eyeliner

Other than contouring, the subject of eyeliner happens to be the second most talked about by fellow bloggers and Twitter friends. So hopefully this will help enlighten the shroud of mystery of how to apply and get the perfect liner. Now bearing in mind we're going for the strong liner look like Kate Moss in the Dior Addict Lipstick ad.

What comes second nature to me in application happens to be a bit of a stumbling block for many. The problems I hear are what if I have a slightly droopy lid or not enough lid etc. To which I answer, start doing the liner from the outside in. Meet our test subject Model A (I can't remember her name).
Notice how there's very little space towards the outside of her eye, between the lash line and crease. Problem? Maybe, but nothing a bit of cleverness can't help. Now let's see Model A in the final look with liner and then we'll get to specifics. Here's what we're aiming for in terms of the liner.
Nice huh? So in as few and as descriptive words I can muster, I will try and explain what I did.  

1. Looking straight into mirror, using a black liner pencil, draw the flick first on the outside. As you want the liner to look when your eyes are opened. Stop when you hit the crease. The top of the flick is usually horizontal to ground level and you end up with a elongated triangle on it's side.
2. Using cotton buds dipped in any Micellar cleansing water, tidy up the shape and how long or flicked you want the liner to be.
3. Now starting from the inner eye, start lining, using the pencil still till you get to the point where you can't go any further and you have to start joining the flick.
4. Always look into mirror and check constantly the thickness and flow of the liner whilst lining.
5. With one eye closed, join the flick and the rest of the liner. This will almost always result in a slight dip and the overall shape of the liner will look like half of the batman signal. (well in my head it is!)
6. Using more cotton buds with cleansing water, clean up the shape and when you're happy, go over with your liner of choice. I usually press a black shadow onto the pencil first and then  gel liner to get the deepest blackest liner possible.

Here's a close up:
Products used: MAC Kohl Pencil in Smolder, MAC eye shadow in Carbon, MAC Fluid Line in Blacktrack, MUJI mini cotton buds, La Roche-Posay Physiological Micellar Solution.

I hope this helps with any liner issues. You just have to practice a bit and this will become second nature. As always questions and comments are highly encouraged. Good luck and I would love to hear how your attempts go!  


Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Brocato Swell Volume: Hair Range Alert!

Anyone who knows me will know that my hair is my pride and joy. Vanity? Maybe but one's got to count one's blessing where one finds it! Haha. I have quite fine hair even though there's a fair bit of it and have always had problems with volume or lack off! Add to the equation a sensitive scalp which itches and flakes and yet manages to get greasy if the products I use are too heavy! How very typical of me, nothing is ever simple!
Meet the Brocato Swell Volume range. Created by US salon owner Sam Brocato, the range boasts a sulphate-free policy and utilizes Grape Vine (and Seed) Extract blended with hair and scalp restorative ingredients to create a range that promotes incredible shine and body on hair throughout the day.

I started using the Swell Volume Full Body Shampoo and Deep Volumizing Treatment today and my first impressions? Immediately my attention was drawn to the texture of the shampoo, it was neither gel nor fluid or anything shampoo usually comes in! It was a viscous jelly sort of texture. And when applied to my hair which is about chest length and water was added, it literally exploded into the most gorgeous foam! I know I sound a bit mad but it did! Considering that London hard water rarely facilitates in any sort of foaming unless a lot of product was used, I was quite amazed as I only used a 50p size amount of product. The scent was light and clean smelling, once again neither floral nor fruity, just clean and light.

What about the Deep Volumizing Treatment? A very light creme, not cream but creme, that's what I am calling it because once again it is not a cream but a creme. Try it, you'll understand why. I used the treatment instead of a conditioner and it rinsed out without any residue, leaving my hair tangle free and smooth. Once again the scent was a very pleasant clean smell reminding me of a professional salon product rather than a consumer one.  I liked it.

So conclusion. I might have easy hair to look after but the thing that decides whether I like a hair care product is my scalp. It itches and flakes if it doesn't like it. It's been 11 hours since I've used Brocato Swell Volume and my scalp still feels clean and calm and my hair is still shiny, non-greasy and light and airy. If my scalp didn't like it, I'd know by now. So it's 2 thumbs up from me. 

If you're interested in the science involved in the Swell Volume Full Body Shampoo, click HERE. For the science in the Deep Volumizing Treatment, click HERE.

The Full Body Shampoo costs £11.95 for 300ml and the Deep Volumizing Treatment costs  £13.95 for 150ml.
For stockists, ring 08705 561 929.

 

Friday, 12 August 2011

Sisley: Brand Catch Up.

It's been a hectic few weeks with shoots and work etc getting in the way of what's coming out in the beauty world. So on a rare day off, I went to see one of my favourite brands to work with, for a catch up on upcoming launches and to see if I missed out on any items from their large collection of beautiful products.

Sisley is a luxury brand known for harnessing the powerful benefits of plants for use in their skincare, makeup and fragrance. Several items I would never go without include Sisley Floral Spray Mist, Express Flower Gel and Eau De Sisley No 2. Well there's a few more products coming our way that might just make it to my list of must-haves!
 
Black Rose Cream Mask
This new rose scented cream mask promises to refresh, smooth and plump skin in 15 mins with it's powerful cocktail of extract of Black Rose, extract of Chlorella, Geranium essential oil, Shea butter, pro-vitamin B5 and a whole list of incredible botanicals from land and sea.

It's soft texture makes it easy to apply and tissue off without any need to rinse off so perfect for plumping and rejuvenating before a special occasion or a special occasion. I can't wait to use this on a certain celeb when I work with her for US Vogue next week!

Launching nationwide last week of August 2011.
Skinleya Anti-Aging Lift Foundation
9 shades of this creamy foundation ensures that wrinkles and fine lines look softened and visibly reduced. Ultra-pure pigments, silicone gum and elastomers and soft-focus microspheres help provide true colour, silkiness in application, an optically smoothing veil to minimise blemishes and to diffuse and reflect light.

Don't forget that it's not just optical with this foundation! While it makes you look good, it's also working hard to combat the signs of ageing with Willow Leaf extract and a whole host of minerals like Manganese and Tourmaline microcrystals.

Launching nationwide 1st week September 2011.
Eau D'Ikar
Finally an EDT specifically for us men from Sisley! I've been using Eau De Sisley No 2 for years and although lovely, when i heard this was coming out I pounced at the chance to try it and oh boy it doesn't disappoint! It's manly yet tender and sensitive, sexy yet clean and pure, and smells unique and special enough to not be mistaken for something cheap!

The constant is the Mediterranean shrub Mastic in top, middle and base cut with Bitter Orange, Bergamot, Lemon, Carrot Seed, Iris, Jasmine, Orange Pekoe Tea, Reeds, Leather, Wood, Spices, Green Cistus, Sandalwood and Vetiver results in truly an intoxicating powerful scent that I would wear for years to come! It's invokes images of a well worn expensive leather jacket in the dry herbaceous terrain of the Mediterranean by the sea! That's the closest I can muster for now. I absolutely love it!

Launched nationwide 1st week of September 2011.

So that's what's new coming out from Sisley in the next few weeks. If you get the chance to try any of these products, I look forward to hearing about your thoughts and opinions!


Pai: 'Living Water' BioAffinity Toners

Readers of my blog will know that I rarely feature organic skincare products. The only one I have featured so far is Pai, brought to my attention by bloggers and friends on Twitter. There are incredible brands out there but as a MUA, I tend to stick to brands I know work as I really do not want to fuss about with experimenting on a job. Anyway I tried Pai and it works and I love the range and yes it's organic and extremely gorgeous!

New to their arsenal of luscious products are the 'Living Water' BioAffinity Toners in 2 varieties. Rice & Rosemary for Combination/Sensitive Skin and Lotus & Orange Blossom for Dry/Sensitive Skin. 
Both toners boast a potent cocktail of vitamins, amino acids and trace minerals extracted from earth and body of the plant and unlike common toners, contains no alcohol and is the exact PH of healthy skin, thus providing unparalleled affinity to the skin.

Rice Plant water purifies, cools and rebalances while Rosemary has anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory effects which purifies and de-congests skin.

Lotus root extract  prevents the release of the molecule that makes skin flare up and Orange Blossom stimulates cell regeneration and illuminates the complexion. It also has powerful skin repairing properties.

Enough of the science but just in case science buffs are interested, you can read more about it and order HERE.

Does it work? I've been using the Rice & Rosemary Toner and I love how refreshed and calm my sensitive  skin feels especially on muggy and hot days which we've been having. I have been using it on myself mid-day after giving my face a wipe with cleanser to refresh and then a quick thorough spritz afterwards. Upon inspection, my skin feels and looks calmer, less red and very very moist (I hate that word) and dewy! So I say it's worked. I will slot into my kit and use it on a model. I think this will be a great hit for location shoots for when a model's skin gets hot and irritated from the elements. I shall report on that asap but otherwise I say Pai has got another winner!

Pai 'Living Water' BioAffinity Toner retail at RRP£30 and you get 50ml of gorgeousness. Please do go and try it and let me know how you get on.

Friday, 5 August 2011

Before/After: Award Winning Red Carpet Looks

Fabulous fashion party to get these 2 lovelies ready for and there's a red carpet with lots of paps! Well that was my brief! The clothes were all high-end designer wear so makeup and hair had to reflect it as well. If I was doing a celebrity for the red carpet, I would usually keep the makeup quite simple and just focus on making them look polished and glamorous. However I had 2 lovely models to play with and the brief was a fashion part, so heavy on the glamour and fashion! Let's go. Meet Model #1.

Before you say anything, Sara is not cross-eyed, she just hated being photographed without a bit of makeup. Not many women would. She has beautiful brows and gorgeous skin and lips. Her gown of choice was a beautiful silver beaded number. I tend not to like matching outfits with makeup, it's all a bit dated if you ask me so I went for golden bronze tones to really warm up her skin and compliment her skin and eyes.
Skincare: Bioderma Crealine H20, Vichy Thermal Spa Water Spray, Emma Hardie Amazing Face Hydrating Lighter Lotion, Lanolips 101 Ointment.

Have a look at the after, I've included a flash and non flash shot. Pardon the crazy whiteness that flash sometimes causes, I should have retaken the shot standing back a bit but had no time.
Face: Shu Uemura Stage Performer Instant Glow, Shiseido Perfect Refining Foundation, Chanel Eclat Lumiere, Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage, MyFace MyMix Foundation in Med/Dark 2 (buffed round temples, cheeks, jaw & chin to warm & contour).
Eyes: MAC Kohl Pencil in Teddy, YSL Waterproof Eyepencil in Patent Leather, MAC Eyeshadow in Brun, MyFace BlingTone in Purple Haze, Madina Shiny Stick in 100, Art Deco All-In-One Mascara in Black, Max Factor False Lash Effect Fusion Mascara in Black.
Eyebrows: MAC Eyeshadow in Brun, MAC Clear Brow Fix.
Cheeks: NARS Bronzing Multiple in Malaysia, Max Factor Miracle Touch Creamy Blush in Soft Copper 03, Shiseido Bronzer in Medium, Madina Shiny Stick in 100.
Lips: Revlon Creme De La Chrome in Spice It Up.

What do you think? A bronzed amazonian to stride down the red carpet, all a glowing to show off the incredible bronze skin and to off set the cool grey silver tones of the dress.

Meet Model #2. Young innocent and quiet Sophie. I wanted to make her look a bit older and more dangerous and sexy to go with her gorgeous dark dusky gowns. So I opted for jewelled tones with a bit of hazy ancient oriental opium den thrown in! Don't ask me how I come up with such imagery!
Skincare: Bioderma Crealine H20, Vichy Thermal Spa Water Spray, Emma Hardie Amazing Face Hydrating Lighter Lotion, Lanolips 101 Ointment.
Face: Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua , Shiseido Perfect Refining Foundation, YSL Touche Eclat, Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage.
Eyes: MAC Kohl Pencil in Phone Number, Shiseido Luminizing Satin Eye Color Trio in GY901 Snow Shadow, Bourjois Intense Extraite in No 06, YSL Waterproof Eye Pencil in Black Ink, Illamasqua Precision Ink in Alchemy, L'Oreal Voluminous Mascara in Carbon Black.
Eyebrows: Anastasia Brow Wiz in Ash Blonde, MAC Clear Brow Fix.
Cheeks: NARS Bronzing Multiple in Malaysia, Max Factor Miracle Touch Creamy Blush in Soft Pink, Kevyn Aucoin The Celestial Powder in Candlelight.
Lips: MyFace Blingtone in Silver Screen, Revlon Creme De La Chrome in Berry Flashy. 

There you go, dark mysterious and very sexy, dripping in jewels from a glamorous time long gone. What do you guys think? 2 very different but equally gorgeous looks. Comments once again very welcome!


Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Vote For Musings Of A Makeup Artist in the Cosmo Blog Awards

Hey guys thought I'd drop a post to rally some love and support by asking for you to vote for my blog in Cosmo Blog Awards. It's been incredible doing this blog and I believe that more loving wouldn't hurt! 

Just click here to enter your email address and why you like my blog. 

The category I am going for will be the "New Beauty Blog (Less than 18 Months Old) and the blog URL is http://www.musingsofamakeupartist.blogspot.com

Thanks for the support guys and regardless of the results it's been a blast and I look forward to many more blog posts!

Kenneth x

Before/After: 1 Girl, 3 Looks!

So another day another Before/After. After much support and feedback from my Twitter friends, this seemed to be a very popular feature on the blog and thank god for that! It's been so manic with work, I have yet had a chance to visit any press days to view new collections so you'll have to put up with these till I get the chance again! 

What's the brief? 3 looks using natural tones such as taupes, bronzes, browns and nudes. Each one more progressive and I suppose for want of a better word, heavier. We decided to base it very loosely in terms of eras, starting with a very natural 70s look, then a slightly beefed up version of the 70s look with a peachy lip and finally a late 80s red lip look that's strong and yet fresh and modern. I love challenges like this! 

After much discussion with friends, I shall now also include a section on the skincare I use for Before/After. It's second nature for me to adjust skincare according to the skintype I am working on, the makeup I am using and also the affect I want to create. Anyway let's get started, I'm so excited! Let's meet Jessi. As you can see Jessi is gorgeous and the only issues I needed to address were slight spottiness and dark circles.
Skincare used: Alpha-H Balancing Cleanser, Konjac Sponge, Lancome Bi-Facil, Crealine H20 Cleanser, Vichy Thermal Spa Water Spray, Emma Hardie Amazing Face Hydrating Lighter Lotion, Lanolips 101 Ointment.

I usually do a double cleanse if I feel the model or client needs it. Jessi arrived from the airport and the skin looked a bit tired and there was leftover mascara from a job the day prior hence I wanted to buff the skin and get rid of dead skin and old makeup. Doing this and also a good facial massage is vital to getting blood circulating and wakes the skin up before makeup.
Face: Shu Uemura Stage Performer Instant Glow, Shiseido Perfect Refining Foundation, YSL Touche Eclat, Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage.
Eyes: MAC Taupe Blush, MAC Teddy & Taupe Eye Pencil,  Max Factor False Lash Effect Fusion Mascara, ArtDeco All-in-One Mascara in Black.
Eyebrows: Anastasia Brow Wiz in Ash Blonde, MAC Clear Brow Fix.
Cheeks: NARS Bronze Multiple in Malaysia, Max Factor Miracle Touch Creamy Blush in Soft Copper 03, Shiseido Bronzer in Light, Madina Shiny Stick in 100.
Lips: Lanolips 101 Ointment, TopShop Creme Lipcolour in Tawny.
Powder: YSL Poudre Sur Mesure in Sand No 2.

So beautiful and gorgeous right? Soft and flattering was what I was aiming for! Next look.
Face: Same as above.
Eyes: Dior 2 Colour High Contrasting Eyeshadow in 695 Bronzy Look, MyFace Blingtone in Silver Screen, Kevyn Aucoin The Sculpting Powder in Medium.
Eyebrows: Same as above.
Cheeks: Kevyn Aucoin The Creamy Moist Glow in Tansoleil, Shieseido Bronzer in Medium.
Lips: Lanolips 101 Ointment, Madina Shiny Stick in 100, Kevyn Aucoin The Creamy Moist Glow in Tansoleil patted in.
Powder: YSL Poudre Sur Mesure in Sand No 2.

So a beefier version of the 1st look, I've brought the shadow much lower under the eye to create a slightly more dangerous edgier look. It's a very sexy under eye shadow! You ready for the last look?
Face: Refresh skin with Shu Uemura Stage Performer Instant Glow, Chanel Eclat Lumiere in Beige Clair.
Eyes: Kevyn Aucoin The Sculpting Powder in Medium, Kevyn Aucoin The Celestial Powder in Candlelight.
Brows: Anastasia Brow Wiz in Ash Blonde, Chanel Perfect Brows, MAC Clear Brow fix.
Cheeks: Kevyn Aucoin The Sculpting Powder in Medium, Kevyn Aucoin the Celestial Powder in Candlelight.
Lips: Shiseido Perfect Refining Foundation, OCC Liptar in NSFW.
Powder: YSL Poudre Sur Mesure in Sand No 2.

How do you like that? I adore an 80s look any day and was channeling Robert Palmer's Addicted to Love and Helmut Newton girls here. Lots of soft but definite contouring. I chose to leave the skin slightly dewy and unpowdered to maintain a modern edge. If I had powdered it it would have look too matte and "done". 
So 3 looks on one girl. Any thoughts? As always comments welcomed and I hope you enjoy these looks!