Last night, I spent some time cleaning out my kit to prepare for some upcoming jobs. Since I had some energy, I started tossing old or rarely used cosmetics from my personal makeup stash and wondered to myself, “When did I even BUY all of this?” When you love makeup and beauty products, it’s easy, (almost too easy thanks to online shopping), to accumulate a vast amount of products. As much as I love my products, I value cleanliness and safety, so some things had to go.
Unless they are working every day as a makeup artist, most people don’t use all of the cosmetics they purchase. With companies like Sephora, Ulta, and MAC offering rewards programs for customers, the availability and easy accessibility to cosmetics makes it harder than ever to stop buying. As a result, people have literally transformed bathrooms, bedrooms, and nooks into home makeup salons.
Spring cleaning for me means paring down products to the ones I value the most and saying goodbye to those I’ve let sit around for too long. Spend money the way you choose, but when it comes to the world of cosmetics, it’s best to slow down, purchase what you need, and replace when necessary. I’ll admit that it’s hard to let go of cosmetics that you love, especially when you start adding up how much money you may have spent, but safe, clean products are better than “losing” some money over items that may cause a breakout or an infection.
If you are a person of color (note: I am referring to anyone who is not caucasian), who struggles with dark circles or dark spots on your face, this post is for you, HOWEVER, dark circles and spots affect MANY people. This is just more prevalent with those of us in the world who have more melanin than others.
When you are trying to perfect your look, it really sucks to not be able to cover the dark marks. I mean, let’s be real. You don’t REALLY want to use a whole bottle of foundation every day when you’re trying to cover up something on your face. There ARE people out there who do use way too much product, but I’ll save that topic for another day. So, what’s a gal (or guy) to do? Try an orange color corrector. Personally, I like MAC Studio and Conceal Color Correct Palette in Dark, because it’s nice and creamy. The orange corrector looks weird (and yes, it looks ORANGE on your face) but after applying with a wedge or concealer brush, and going over it with your concealer and foundation of choice, I guarantee that you will have won your game of hide-n-go-seek with your dark marks.
As an artist, I tend to gravitate toward “full face” year round, including these hot, sticky, humid summer days in Chicago. But lately, due to being pressed for time, and general laziness, I’ve found a way to even out my splotchy complexion (thanks eczema!) and look “made up” without using concealer and foundation.
Keeping my skin moisturized and hydrated is key to looking good. So I’ve upped my water intake, decreased my caffeine addiction down to 1 serving every few days, and doubled up on my moisturizer by first slathering my face in Kelapo Coconut Oil, then following up with my favorite Olay Regenerist Micro-Sculpting Cream. After my skin has soaked up my concoction, I swipe on MAC Mineralize Skinfinish Natural Powder, which gives me natural and polished look. When I’m done, I do a happy dance! Low key, this look may take me way beyond summer. I’m just saying…
What do you plan to do for yourself this year? Any new beauty goals? Are you planning on treating yourself well this year? I am making this year one of discovery, change, growth, and preserving my pretty.
Santa dropped off some helpful gifts (shoutout to my niece Brittany for the Sephora gift card), and I’ve already started adding new items (and old standbys) to my personal makeup kit. Sometimes, I forget to splurge on things for myself, because as an artist, I’m always thinking of cosmetics that I can use on clients. This year, I’m allocating money toward my “pretty fund”, which is allows for beauty purchase per month on something that I’ve always wanted to try. I won’t be going berserk, as I am a bargain hunting superstar, or at least one who has learned how to maximize her beauty budget by utilizing industry perks, and requesting cosmetic company gift cards (hello MAC) in lieu of other gifts. I kicked off the new year right by gracing Sephora, MAC, and Nordstrom with my presence and treated myself to some of my favorites (and some new, instant classics).
A new year should bring about new beginnings, a fresh start. Toss out any makeup you’ve been holding on to for years, go get a consultation or a makeover (if you’re in Chicago, you can always contact me), and start paying attention to what’s in style now for beauty. Little changes can totally transform your look, but the change starts with you. Sign up for exclusive deals from makeup companies and start actually using your discounts to score new, exciting products that can help you step into the new year the right way!
Since the weird Chicago weather is finally making sense, I’ve been inspired to create more Spring themed looks for my clients, now that we are actually having a Spring.
I love a bold eye like nobody’s business but I know for most women, the style is sometimes difficult to own, especially for a daytime look. My model wasn’t entirely convinced that she could pull off her bright, bold, blue look but she trusted me completely (maybe because I’m her big sister)!
I used Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics pigment in Saturate, a lovely, shimmery, aqua color. Applying the pigment from the inner eyelids out to the center of the lids (both top and bottom) gave just the right amount of “bright” before I transitioned to a darker blue. I actually used a combination of three additional shadows from MAC and INGLOT to add depth to the outer lids and crease area. MAC’s Pro Palette Shadow in Atlantic Blue, mixed with INGLOT shadows in 70 (bright blue) and 493 (bright purple) added a better level of dimension. After lining her upper lids with Stila Smudge Stick Waterproof Eye Liner in Stargazer, I used MAC Smolder on the upper and lower lash lines, and Make Up For Ever Smokey Extravagant Mascara to complete the look.
Little Sis was very pleased with the end results, and I think I’ve managed to convert her to bright shadow for the daytime (fingers crossed)!
“Sugar and spice, and everything nice…” makes me think of soft, sweet, girly, girl style. Guess what? Pink is not just for little girls. Check out the gloss pink lip on my beautiful
Real Women Wear Pink
client. We collaborated on the look, doing a smokey eye, but incorporating more shimmer and pink (I’m a girly girl at heart). Stila lip pencil and lip gloss gave my client the pretty pout without the “bubblegum matte” look that seems to be so popular these days. I actually picked up the Stila colors (Gumdrop Lip Gloss and Aspiring Lip Pencil) from Amazon.com, since these were two of my favorites that were discontinued. MUA’s can testify to how much we search and horde makeup once we stumble upon the products that make us throw up our hands to the heavens!
A smokey eye doesn’t have to be created with just black or dark shadows. For this look, the eyes were lined, but more neutral, shimmery tones were used, with deeper colors only swept across the outer crease and lid areas. I used a combination of MAC, Magnolia Makeup, and OCC pigments to create the shimmery, smokey eye, added Make Up For Ever Aqua Black for liner, went back over the liner with MAC Eye Kohl in Smolder, and topped off the look with Ardell lashes in 110.
It really does take a village to raise one child. Wait. What I MEANT was that sometimes it takes a village of makeup products to create one look! Haha! Seriously though, you can’t possibly expect one eye shadow to do it all, especially if you’re craving a different look. I love mixing several types of colors to get the look that makes my eyes pop, but I always start with a great eye primer. I used Make Up For Ever primer and Aqua Eyes Liner in in the posted picture, then started laying Magnolia Makeup pigment in Green Tea from the inner tear ducts to the center of the lids. I extended Inglot Eye Shadow in #331 from the center to the the outer portions of my lids and up into the crease. I used a touch of MAC Smolder Kohl Eyeliner and MAC Amber Lights eye shadow above the crease to complete the shadow look.
I love to experiment with all of the colors in my kit, and that experimentation not only keeps me from overspending on cosmetics since I’m exploring with what I already own, but also allows me push myself to try new things. The best thing about makeup is that it’s temporary and totally changeable. Mixing multiple products is not a foreign idea, ask any good makeup artist. If you prefer to stick with one brand, that’s your choice, just know that in the world of makeup, having options makes the process even more fun.