Tuesday, March 29, 2011
As a professional makeup artist I have always stayed away from Mineral Makeup in my kit. Mineral Foundations tend to have high amounts of Bismuth Oxychloride, which is a grayish-white inorganic powder that leaves the skin looking to shiny and sometimes comes off looking ashy on camera. I am also not a fan of the way most mineral powders accentuate pores and fine lines and sometimes look too cakey on drier skin. That was until I tried Youngblood Mineral Makeup.
I am always the test dummy for any new products I try, so I decided to go with the traditional loose foundation on myself. Youngblood’s Loose Foundation formula is so finely milled you can feel & see the difference when applied.
Step 1- They recommend prepping your skin with a dusting of their Rice or their Hi-Def Powder (any loose/pressed translucent powders will do the trick) to prepare the skin for the foundation. This step absorbs any oils on the skin allowing the foundation to go on smoothly and evenly. (to reduce appearance of large pores, I apply the rice powder with a Flocked Sponge ). Now this is something that totally makes sense, but I have never seen any other mineral line include this step in their application process! (Weird...)
Step 2- Using your desired brush, I prefer the small kabuki brush (the tighter the bristles on the brush the heavier the application) swirl in the foundation dusting off any access product. Start by applying to the outside of the face around the jaw line and work your way inwards towards the nose. Keep applying till you reach the desired coverage. Really working the brush into the skin buffing your way to perfection.
Step 3- Because I have extremely oily skin, I like to apply a little more rice powder in my T-zone, to set the product & control the shine. I have noticed when using the loose foundation you need to go back and blend around the eye area. Depending on what brush you use to apply the foundation, its hard to get even coverage around the curves of your eye. So I just go in with my finger or a small blending brush and buff away any lines.
Step 4- Finishing the face. If you need more coverage in certain areas, (blemishes or under eyes) you can use Youngblood’s Ultimate Cream Concealer over the powder foundation and it wont ball up or grab. Because the formulas are both similar it goes on smoothly allowing you to conceal after your base (which I always prefer to do). I’ve also recently discovered Youngblood’s new Eye Impact Quick Recovery Eye Cream, which I love! I use it morning and night and also after my foundation I pat a little of the eye cream right under the outer corners of my eye up to the temple. This leaves a soft almost luminescent finish to the face.
I love the way the makeup feels on my skin, even if I do a heavy application, it still feels extremely light weight, almost as if I have no makeup on at all! The loose foundation leaves you with a soft airbrushed finish & a beautiful subtle glow. I can wear it all day and it never fades or breaks down, even in severe heat or when working out (yes, I actually have been working out). I also have noticed since using this foundation my skin has never looked better. I haven’t had any major breakouts and my skin looks more even! I haven’t changed my skin care routine in awhile so I am a firm believer that it’s because I switched my foundation to Youngblood! I even used Youngblood mineral makeup on set for a commercial recently and it looked beautiful on camera. It didn’t come off looking too shiny or grayish like I have experienced in the past with other mineral makeup. I am very impressed with Youngblood’s line.
Youngblood not only has the traditional loose powder foundation, but they also have a liquid, a crème to powder (which is AmaZinG!!!) and a tinted moisturizer! I have tried them all and love them!
I highly recommended anything from Youngblood’s line!
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
TARTE Mineral Bronzer- Park Ave Princess
I recently purchased this bronzer, only because it was an addition to a sweet little Luminous Complexion kit at Sephora. By the way I love Sephora’s gift/collection sets, always a good idea, especially for artists, to try new products without taking a full financial risk…You artists know what I mean;)
Back to the Bronzer; Now Normally I am not a big fan of bronzer, I tend to veer to the healthy natural skin tone complexion (so beautiful & much more modern, if I might add) opposed to overly golden, obviously artificial Bronzed look that has stolen the pages of US Weekly, FHM & Maxim world wide!. But I am constantly being asked (especially for red carpet & weddings) for the “healthy bronzed goddess” look.
Now of course I have a couple bronzers in my kit that are a great go to for any complexion. Shimmer, Matte, Light, Dark, Liquid, powder, etc…. But when tying out this new shade by TARTE, I think I have a new FAVORITE!!! I applied it on myself, which is a huge test (considering I’m pale and NOT INTO Bronzers, at all!), I found myself really liking the light golden pigment it left behind. On my cheeks, on my eyes, all over, WOW! Looks very pretty and surprisingly natural. It seems to have the right amount of brown, and golden pigments to work on every complexion, even the fairest of fair! Which as an artist, I can tell you, on ANY skin tone this would leave a beautiful luminous bronzed glow (because its not too cakey or highly red/orange pigmented) It seems so delicate but at the same time does the job. Leaving a beautiful soft, glowing complexion, without looking too fake & bake and, can I say icky!
I am so excited to have found my new favorite powdered bronzer! Even using this bronzer as a contour color for fair complexions…WOW! I used this to contour my own face, focusing on check bones, bridge of nose, jaw line and (forehead) hair line, and I found it to look not at all obvious and completely natural! (Which is very rare!)
The slight hint of luminous pigment counter acts the darker shade on the skin so the conturing is not obvious at all. In different lights it reflects in the most beautiful and flattering way. But straight on it does the job of contouring! No Doubt! I would definitely suggest this bronzer for any one, any occasion, it’s an all around great shade! Good Luck and let me know your thoughts!
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
After hearing and reading about it countless times and I finally decide to test it out and see how amazing this product really was. And to my surprise, I instantly feel in love with it! YSL Touche Eclat is a complexion highlighter that comes in the form of a pen, in 14 different shades. (I use shade 2 for myself) You simply click the button on the bottom and apply to desired areas of the face with the brush tip applicator and pat into the skin.
I first tested the product on myself; I used it under my eyes on my lids, brow bone and cheekbones. I just swiped a couple of strokes and used my finger to lightly blend into the skin.
The result was my dark circles & fine lines virtually disappeared. And I noticed the skin was instantly illuminated and refreshed! NO JOKE! You can apply it over your liquid foundation or use it by itself. I even tried it over a mineral powder base and it still blended quite nicely. The great thing about it is you can use it in all different areas of the face, to brighten and give you that beautiful glow. And you can apply throughout the day too for an instant pick me up.
You can use it on the brow bone, the eyelid, in the inner corner of the eye bringing it under the lash line, down the bridge of the nose, the corners of the nostrils, on the curve above your lip, around the lip line and on the chin. (see attached image for suggested placements)
Now one thing I must mention…Very important for all of you makeup artists! I tested this on a recent photo shoot. The photographer was shooting outside with just a reflector the model had serious dark circles and a little puffiness, so I used the Touche Eclat to try and brighten the area, I also swiped a bit on the bridge of her nose. To my surprise, the photographer showed me a shot on the camera and it was horrible! Everywhere I placed the highlighter it was reflecting white like crazy! Giving off the appearance of a raccoon! So I had to go in and take it down with a sponge. I didn’t even use a lot of the product either. I think it just has so much reflective pigment that any direct light will amplify it.
I wouldn’t suggest using it for TV or film, EVER. And when using on a client, whether it be a photo shoot, red carpet event or wedding, I would suggest being extremely light handed with it, and I would avoid using it under the eye, so It doest give off a reflective raccoon look. Does everyone remember the infamous Nicole Kidman red carpet look with powder on her nose and under eyes...YIKES! (note picture below) I would try using on the brow & cheekbone and lightly around the lips to define them…. But please use with caution.
If you go to the YSL website they have a shade finder that helps you match your skin tone with the proper Touche Eclat.
I really think this product is amazing, and does what it claims!
Beware and try to avoid a disaster similar to this!
Sunday, November 21, 2010
As makeup artists, there will always be times throughout our careers when we are challenged, times when we may question ourselves as artists. And there will be times when we have the ability to change someone’s life for the better. For some people suffering from cystic acne, everyday is a battle to get up and go out to face the public, feeling you can not escape or hide it…I know, I have had severe cases of acne through out my life (caused by stress, of course, the #1 killer!) If you ever encounter a client or talent suffering from this horrible condition, and you are able to conceal it, trust me, you will bring a huge smile to their face and give them confidence that they have been lacking as long as they have had the condition.
It is an amazing feeling, and I believe also why a lot of us got involved in makeup in the first place, to make women feel beautiful and give them a confidence they have never had before, by bringing out their natural beauty!…Don’t ever underestimate the ability of MAKEUP…It is mighty Powerful!
#1- Prepping the skin; Start off with clean skin, the skin tends to have an abnormal amount of oil so you want to use a mild toner (Olay Refreshing Toner) to remove any excess oil that’s lingering on the skins surface.
You will notice although their skin is oily there will probably be lots of dry spots, from harsh treatments, so you need to put the moister back in these areas. I like Mario Badescu Control Cream, which I apply with my fingers or a synthetic brush only to the dry areas (not the entire face). Next I will apply a light oil controlling moisturizer (Mario Badescu Oil Control Lotion) over the entire face. You then go in with a heavy-duty primer (Benefits Dr. Feelgood), and generously smooth over the face with a synthetic foundation brush, focusing on the areas with the most eruptions. This helps to cover the texture. Now you cannot completely get rid of it unfortunately there isn’t a product in the world that is capable of this, but you can help to minimize it. I like Dr. Feelgood as a primer because it gives you the ability to build, with out flaking. Other silicone based fillers or primers bead up or flake off if you use too much. And in this type of makeup application that won’t cut it, you really need more help with smoothing out the skin.
#2- Concealing Redness; Now I’m not a huge fan of concealers, I find them too heavy and artificial looking. But in some cases, like this one I do use it. But I cocktail a green/yellow-based shade from my Dermacolor palette by Kryolan and mix with Mineral Fusion cream concealer (a mineral based smooth creamy concealer). Apply with a synthetic foundation brush to all problem areas. (Be light handed, because you want to lay it on top of your primer, not blend it with it). Then go in with a moistened natural sponge, as you know I LOVE the Beauty Blender and lightly stipple over the edges of your concealer.
#3- Base; This is the tricky part. You need good coverage but you don’t want to create a mask. The key is to notice the good parts of the skin and try to enhance them and just focus on concealing the blemished areas. If they have a full heavy mask of makeup on it wont make them feel any better about themselves. You must create the illusion of flawless skin. Now if you are familiar with an airbrush, it is a great choice as a foundation base, because you can get smooth even coverage that lies on top of the skin. But if you do not have an airbrush, you need a good liquid/ cream foundation. Giorgio Armani Designer Shaping Cream is a good choice; it gives you a little more coverage then the Luminous Silk, but the same blend ability and finish.
Using a synthetic foundation brush, generously brush the foundation all over the face, once again use a very light touch. Take your dampened sponge (Beauty Blender is the best for this) and lightly stipple over the face, blending the foundation into a flawless finish. If you need to go in to some areas that still need coverage, take the tip of the beauty blender and dip it directly in the foundation, then lightly stipple over the areas that need more coverage. You will see that this will transfer the foundation on the spots while perfectly blending into the rest of the base.
#4- Setting & Finishing; Now it is time to set your foundation. Using a very fluffy powder brush, set your foundation with a translucent loose powder, I like Youngbloods HD Powder (its much better then the Makeup Forever HD Powder). I then go in with a pressed mineral powder or duo powder (Youngblood Pressed Mineral Foundation is my choice) and using a dense powder brush I spot on the powder all over the face, almost a stippling motion with the brush, focusing on the problem areas. This will give you a little more coverage with a matte finish.
After this step you will have a beautiful, even complexion ready for the rest of your makeup application. Now you should stay away from any blushes with shimmer or shine, this will just draw attention to the texture. And also note, that as a makeup artist you cannot get rid of the texture, you can only minimize it (Dr.Feelgood does an amazing job in this department) now if you are working on a photo shoot or for T.V. don’t be afraid to let the photographer or D.P. know that the talent has extra texture and they should light them accordingly. It is their job to help us out, by making our work look even better!
I hope some of you found this post helpful! And hopefully you will feel a little more confident in helping people suffering from severe acne be their most beautiful. And just remember, anytime you get someone in your chair that may look as a challenge, don’t stress, or over think it…its only makeup. If it doesn’t work out, wash it off and start again. Good Luck!
Thursday, November 18, 2010
Since I first discovered Revolution about 4 years ago, I've been hooked!
Revolution by Du Wop is a slightly shimmering bronzing body moisturizer. It's highly pigmented and transfer resistant once it dries. It comes in 2 shades Medium and Deep. It used to come in a Light shade too, but they discontinued it…I don’t know why because it was AMAZING & my favorite shade, go figure.
Anyways, it's Brilliant!
I don't know about you but my legs very rarely see the sun, causing them to be pasty, blotchy, and every bruise or scratch is amplified against my pale skin. Revolution is the only way I can wear shorts or dresses.... You use it just as you would lotion; rub it together in your palms and smooth all over your legs, really focusing on blending it in to the ankles and knees. It does feel a little sticky, but nothing you can’t ignore and it takes a good 10 minutes to completely set, but it’s worth the wait. It leaves you with flawless, smooth, slightly bronzed legs. Almost as if you have on nylons (but not in a bad way) and the best part is the Medium shade gives you just the slightest bit of color to cut the paleness, unlike other bronzing lotions that instantly give you the burnt orange oompa loompa look. It just evens out your color and adds a hint of shimmer and tint. So to the normal eye it appears that you just have amazing legs! The lotion itself can be a little intimidating for first timers. It's highly pigmented so looks closer to foundation then lotion... But trust me, it's not as heavy as it seems! And you can cut it down with regular body lotion (50/50 ratio, or whatever you prefer). On photo shoots I use Revolution on any part of a models body that is showing and has any discoloration, weather it be bruises, blemishes, veracious veins... Whatever! I apply with my hands, just rub it in evenly over desired area, you can use a sponge if you prefer but I find hands is much easier...sometimes I add a little lotion (like I mentioned above) if I don’t need as much coverage or a little mineral or baby oil to give an amazing shine to the skin. On the right skin tone it can also be a great base for full body makeup or tattoo coverage- Apply evenly then go in with a matching color foundation or concealer (I use Dermacolor palette by Kryolan mixed with Vincent Kehoe cream foundation) and stipple over the desired area to be covered. (Obviously there's a lot more to tattoo coverage, but I'll go into that in a different post.... Revolution just makes a great base on according skin tones)
It's also great for red carpet clients or brides, if they have a little tan line or if their chest is a different shade then their face (way too common)... Smooth some revolution on her and it softly evens out the imperfections! But make sure it dries before sending her to get dressed.
I absolutely love this product! Not only is it a staple in my kit but also I use it on myself. I highly recommend it!
Monday, October 25, 2010
It seems like Makeup Artists are always on the endless quest for the best liquid foundation. Its lighter then the traditional crème or old school pancake, and if you find a good formula you can build up the coverage for almost any complexion.
As the rest of you I have tried a ton of different liquid foundations, so in this post I will go over my thoughts and opinions. All these foundations I tried on myself, then some on set or on clients. Now this post is pretty long, but hopefully informative. (I promise not to make it a habit)
Lancome Photogenic Lumessence - Claims: Silky soft texture glides on to visibly refine skin’s surface for a smooth even complexion. Exclusive Aqua-Catch Complex locks in moisture for up to 24 hours for all day hydration for a youthful complexion.- The thing about this foundation, is it does go on smoothly (I always use a foundation brush or my fingers to put on a liquid foundation, then use the Beauty Blender to smooth out the surface). And gives a pretty even coverage.
It felt nice on the skin after the first initial application. By hour 1 the face was completely shiny and started to feel greasy. Granted it is a moisturizing foundation, so it maybe suitable for people with extremely dry or matured skin. But for me it was a disaster. Half way through the day, I had blotted away half the makeup. And as a makeup artist we need to find a foundation that can ultimately be suitable for all skin types and circumstances. This foundation was definitely not it.
I would recommend only for women with dry or matured skin. Not for a professionals kit. Retails at $42.00
Lancome teint idole Ultra 14 hour – Claims- retouch-free, oil-free foundation features innovative highly resistant pigments for 14-hour wear. SoftFeel technology glides on to comfort skin with flawless full coverage that lasts all day.- Its smooth and velvety formula goes on beautifully. Putting it to the test on my oily skin, I did like the finish it gave, but it did not last anywhere near 14 hours! I still got shiny after an hour, but definitely not as shiny as the Photogenic Lumessence. I would have to touch up after about 4 hours. Meaning the foundation would start to break down, it would separate and I would have to go in with my fingers and re buff some areas of the face. Not so good for a foundation that claims to last 14 hours! I mean if you didn’t say it I wouldn’t expect it! So, this foundation is a great foundation, and it covers nicely and has the ability to build coverage, but it doesn’t live up to its claim of lasting 14 hours! I would recommend this foundation for women who are looking for a flawless finish and good coverage, but only to wear for an evening out. Not an all day every day foundation. And it may work as a makeup kit foundation, but probably wouldn’t suggest for T.V. or film. The lights would just break it down so much quicker. Suitable for print and events & all different skin types. Retails for $42.00
CHANEL Pro Lumiere- Claims - A flawless complexion in any light. PRO LUMIÈRE stretches like a canvas that forms a curtain veil of light on the skin. The material reshapes the skin, the color adapts and the density adjusts depending on the desired effect. Soft to the touch and perfectly adjustable when applied, the PRO LUMIÈRE formula is highly concentrated in with high-tech radiance-emitting active ingredients.
This is a nice foundation. I really enjoyed the look and feel of this one. It also has the ability to build more coverage without looking too heavy. It gives a satin finish that looks very pretty. Its staying power is not to bad. After a couple hours I still didn’t notice a heavy feel, I did however feel and look greasy and when I went in with blotting papers (Johnson & Johnson oil control blotting papers) It lifted off on the papers…Weird! This normally doesn’t happen with those papers. So I had to go in and smooth over the areas I blotted. It did blend well into the face again, but I don’t like the maintenance of that for myself. I don’t believe this is oil free either, so that might be why it lift as it did. I also tried CHANEL Mat Lumiere, basically the same foundation geared towards oily skin and a more matte finish. It has a noticeably matte finish. But it didn’t help control shine anymore then any other foundation. And I encountered the same problem with the Pro Lumiere, when using blotting papers the foundation lifts. The only difference this foundation doesn’t blend back in to the skin nicely. I wouldn’t wear this foundation but it would work nicely in a makeup kit if you are willing to spend the $54.00 a bottle. And CHANEL offers no discount for professional artists, which to me is a turn-off.
Shiseido Skin Balancing Foundation SPF 17- Claims- A long-lasting liquid foundation that responds to skin's specific needs. Increases moisture in dry areas. Minimizes shine for a soft matte look. Promotes optimal beauty and balance. I love this foundation! It looks beautiful and flawless all day long. You can really play with the coverage. And the formula has a slight tinge of pearlescent pigment that gives you just the slightest hint of a glowing complexion. Not over powering at all. And surprising it looks nice on skin with texture or large pores. It works on oily or dry skin. I highly recommended this foundation for everyday wear or a great (inexpensive) addition to your beauty kit. Retails for $37.50
Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk - Claims-Capture the glow of perfect skin with this award-winning foundation. Luminous Silk foundation is an oil-free fluid with exclusive Micro-fil technology. So weightless, it redefines foundation. Its hydrating fluid glides on seamlessly with a silky texture and all-day, buildable coverage. For all skin types.
Hands down the best foundation I have used! I absolutely love the way it finishes. It’s extremely moveable and can be layered for more coverage. It leaves the skin with a gorgeous glow and flawless finish. If you use with the Armani Micro-fil Loose powder, it has the same silicone base and can be layered. Meaning you can go in and add more foundation after setting and it doesn’t get all gummy and textured. It holds up all day and looks amazing on camera! I use this foundation in my kit. I only bought 3 shades for my kit. 4, 5.5 and 7. The sales lady was extremely nice and after I told her I was a makeup artist she gave me nice sized samples of all the other shades. I can pretty much mix any color for any skin tone from what I have. Now the only thing is, it is pricey. $59.00 a bottle!! That’s why I don’t use this foundation on myself (unless I am going out). And Armani traditionally doesn’t offer any discounts to Professionals’, which makes it a huge investment if you are going to use it in your kit. Now I normally don’t appreciate when I a line doesn’t offer a professional discount, I mean makeup is expensive…But this foundation is worth it. I also recently worked with a makeup artist that filled me in on a little secret…. Apparently if you purchase the foundations through the Giorgio Armani Boutique in Las Vegas, (you can obviously call if you aren’t in the area) they offer a discount to professionals. I believe you have to send them a website, and tear sheet with proof of profession. Now I haven’t bought any through the boutique yet, so I am not confirming this. But it may be worth a try.
Well. I know this was a huge post, and hopefully some of you made it through the whole thing and found it somewhat helpful. Id love to hear feedback on what anyone else has experienced with liquid foundations. And as I continue to try new products Ill keep you posted.
How can I word this so you all understand my current obsession with the Beauty Blender? …Well, it is pretty much the best tool I have ever added to my kit! The Beauty Blender is simply a sponge. Its latex free and non-allergenic, it has a unique shape of an egg and a beautiful shade of hot pink. I received the Beauty Blender from my sweet sister as a present for my birthday last year. It came 2 in a package with a container of the cleanser to wash them. I wasn’t sure what to make of them. How “Great” could a sponge really be? I mean after all it is just a sponge, right? ……WRONG! This little egg shaped sponge changed my life! Well, at least my whole approach to makeup (which can be considered my life).
After messing with the blenders, using them wet and dry using as a sole applicator and then just as a blending tool, I have figured out the best way to use these little things.
I start of by wetting the Beauty Blender. Run it under some cool water until it expands and then squeeze all the excess out into a clean towel. It becomes extremely plush and pillowy. I then move on to applying my favorite liquid foundation (Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation) with a foundation brush. Add in my contouring with a foundation color 2 shades darker. Lightly stipple the Beauty Blender over the whole face, softly buffing out any lines and blending the contour and highlights beautifully. The tip of the sponge works perfectly for around the eyes and nose. It leaves you with a perfectly blended flawless face! Almost as if it were airbrushed, but not as dry. If you need more coverage to conceal a blemish or under eyes, you can use the beauty blender as an applicator. Dip the tip of the sponge in the foundation or concealer and very lightly stipple it over the blemish or under eyes. It deposits more coverage that blends in perfectly with the rest of your base. Leaving you with a completely flawless velvety finish!
If you have not tried the Beauty Blender yet, I highly recommend them. Plus if you care for them properly they should last you along time. Which will not only be Green but will save you lots of $ on disposable sponges. Even after repeated washes I have not noticed any change in the texture of the sponge. I can honestly say, I am hooked, my kit will never be with out them. They are truly amazing.