Monday, June 30, 2008

Update Video and Thank Yous

Hi Guys,

I decided to do a quick video on my thoughts of my progress over the last 7 months. It's hard to believe that I just started this blog and my youtube page in November/December-ish of last year. Everyone has been so supportive of me...and I wouldn't have come this far without my blogging family.

Here's a quick two minute video with some thoughts on the year...as well as my birthday weekend makeup! I'm also wearing my new dress from this really great store called Metro Park...do you guys have that around you? It's one of those really funky urban/rock clothing stores...with brands like Ed Hardy...Obey Clothing, Lamb...etc. It's actually a tube dress but I wore a black long sleeve shirt under because my boobies kept popping out, lol. Anyways, here's the video!

Thanks again to all of my blogging family...like I said in the video, I wouldn't have been able to get where I am today without you. I check each blog listed on my blog roll nearly everyday. I've learned so much from you guys and have been inspired to no end...thanks for everything!

Friday, June 27, 2008

Happy Friday!

Hi Bellas,

Happy Friday! I’m glad for the weekend because it’s been a busy last few days. A lot of birthdays have been going on over here along with makeup gigs, and more. Wednesday I had a makeup tutorial scheduled with a client who is also a model. She told me that she gets her makeup done a lot, but has no idea how to put it on herself. I think that if you’re in the modeling industry it definitely helps to learn a thing or two about makeup application. This is especially true if you’re just starting out and trying to build your portfolio on a budget.

One thing that came up that I have to remind you guys about, is don’t keep reusing the sponge in your compact. She told me she goes through her crème compact foundation really quickly and doesn’t know why. I looked in and noticed that her sponge inside looked beat up, thin and lanky, and overused. Yuck! Sponges absorb more foundation and on top of it, need to be changed regularly due to bacteria buildup. I explained this to her and she realized that might have been a source of her recent breakouts. If you want to use a sponge, it’s perfectly fine. Just make sure to change it out regularly. They sell compact sponge refills in any beauty aisle. If you want to reduce how much you use…dip a sponge in water, wring it out, and then apply the foundation. This helps you get a lighter coat of coverage.

Today I have my hair appointment scheduled. I’m excited! I’m still not sure what I’m going to do but it’s going to look a heck of a lot better than what it’s looking like now. I’ll post pics soon!

Tomorrow I have the wedding gig booked…hopefully all goes well. Till next time, have a great weekend. Ciao bellas!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Audrey Hepburn inspired photo shoot...

Audrey Hepburn is probably one of the most famous cinema icons out there. She's been in such movies as Breakfast at Tiffanys and My Fair Lady, to name a few. Growing up, I went through a phase where I was obsessed with music and film from the 50's and 60's. I just wanted to live back in that time where girls wore poodle skirts and hung out at the soda fountain. I think it would have been so much fun living back then...fun except for the racism, lol.

Here are a few pics of the screen legend:



My model was also petite, fair skinned and had the same dark hair as Audrey. We were going for a minimal makeup look shot outdoors. Ms. Hepburn was known for barely there makeup--mainly long lashes, pale cheeks and lips, and heavy eyebrows. I went with a lighter look, but modernized it a bit. A good rule of thumb is to only apply as much makeup as a model needs...I know it's fun sometimes to do the whole shebang, but it's best to apply makeup on an individual as needed bases.

I used the following products:
FACE:
-smashbox photofinish primer
-cinema secrets foundation
-green correcting powder from everyday minerals
-graftobian creme blush (great for creating a natural looking flush)

EYES:
-rimmel professional brow pencil
-ardell lashes
-max factor 2000 calorie mascara
-MAC paint in bare canvas
-llama e/s
-cork e/s
-Revlon Colorstay liquid liner in blackest black

LIPS:
-covergirl plumping lipstick in pillow pink
-milani bubblegum pink lipgloss


Here's a tip...don't forget the ears! My model had brightly flushed ears. I brushed on a bit of green correcting powder and voila, red is gone!

You can click on the pics to enlarge.











And of course, a before and after: the look is subtle but definitely makes her more polished.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Happy Birthday Cancers!

Hi Bellas,

So today is the big 25, whewww! I would also like to wish a happy happy birthday to Alien Man as well...because our mamas decided to have us on the same day. There are also a few other bloggers who have birthdays this week so I want to say happy birthday to you too! Today is going well so far...I didn't take off of work because Tuesday is such a random day. I'm also taking off the Monday after 4th of July for my mini vacay back home to Orlando.

Tonight I have dinner plans with the boyfriend. He already surprised me with flowers this morning...he left a dozen white roses in my kitchen with a note that said "For my friend..." and then when I got into my car this morning, there was another dozen red roses with a note that said "For my lover...". He's on point so far...I can't wait for what he's got in store this evening.

With that said...I haven't got really anything makeup related. I've been re-organizing and packing my traincase for my wedding gig this weekend--7 bridesmaids, I gotta pack smart!

I've been trying to think of a fun makeup look to wear to dinner tonight, do you guys have any recommendations?

Love you all!

Monday, June 23, 2008

Boss Lady Photoshoot

Hi Bellas!

Thanks for all your early bday wishes...I had a great weekend. My fabulous best friends did a whole weekend long celebration...including a yummy cake with my makeup by ren ren logo on it! I'll post pics soon. Tomorrow on my (and Alien Man's!) actual b-day, I think my boyfriend is taking me somewhere...I can't wait!

In the meantime, I'm back at work. Dang, should of taking tomorrow off for the bday but I get stingy with my vacation time! Anywho, back to makeup...

So a few weekends ago I was able to do a photoshoot for Amy...she's a publicist and internet radio host here in Atlanta, and she's Filipino!

She found me after googling and reading the article published about me on www.associatedcontent.com. I'm sure many of you can relate, but when you find someone who's from your same background, you kind of jump on the opportunity to work witht them. There aren't a lot of Filipinos here in Atlanta, so we gotta stick together!

She wanted to do a professional type shoot to build her porfolio...where she would have headshots with power poses as well as a few casual pics. Amy is not used to wearing any makeup except some basics like eyeliner and lipstick. She definitely looks good for her age...don't worry Amy, I won't spill the beans! I started off the makeup with some serious brow grooming. We allotted an extra 30 minutes for me to pluck and trim her brows and shape them as well. I'm telling yah girls, the Anastasia brow kit does wonders!

On mature skin, I don't like to do too much. She definitely wanted red lipstick so I opted for a subtle eye with natural looking lashes. I made sure to use cream based formulas for the foundation, lipstick and blush because mature skin requires extra moisture.

In the end I thought she looked sleek and polished, yet approachable at the same time.

***Credit to MMF for the amazing photography.




Friday, June 20, 2008

What I'm Excited About Right Now...

Hi Bellas,

So I decided to do a post to show you where my mind is at right now. There are a couple of things I’m really getting excited about in the next few weeks.

For one, June 24th is my birthday, woo hoo! I’m turning the big 25, quarter century baby! To me, this is a landmark birthday, finally marking the point where I’m for real an adult now, lol. I can rent cars without that nasty underage fee and get a break on my car insurance. It’s funny, because when I was little I always thought I would be married at 25. Boy, what was I smoking? LOL

So far, the only things planned for the big birthday are:
1) Getting my hair done, finally! The BF is going to pay for it as part of my gift. I want the whole shebang – cut, base dye, highlights, and blow out. I only get my hair done like 3 times a year so I have to do it all over each time. I’m trying to grow back my hair longer again. I miss it! I realized that I just don’t know how to manage and style shorter hair. It pretty much stays in my stumpy pony tail. Right now, it’s already at my shoulders, luckily it grows fast. Hopefully within the next two weeks you’ll see my new ‘do. When I get it done, I’m going to take professional head shots for the makeup by renren business.
2) Going to get my nails done, woo wee! LOL. I’ve totally slacked on this…I haven’t gotten my nails done since my birthday last year. Can you believe that? Before that, I was at the nail salon every month getting my spa pedicure and manicure. That was also before makeup came back into my life and sucked all my extra cash! This is going to be a present to myself. I’m thinking bright yellow nailpolish on my feet. Pursebuzz had it on one of her entries and it was too cute!
3) Fourth of July weekend—I’m going back home to Orlando and bringing the BF with me. Fortunately my parents are there, so we can save money on lodging and food. I already know my mom is going to throw down in the kitchen. My BF and I usually take trips together and we haven’t gone anywhere this year. He came home with me for Christmas but we were really only in Orlando for 2 days because I couldn’t get enough time off of work. This time will be better so I can show him more of my hometown.
4) Orlando MAC Pro store –Yall know that when I’m home I’ll definitely make a trip to the MAC Pro store in the Millenia mall. I already warned the boyfriend. Unfortunately I never really was into MAC like I am now back when I was living in home--so I missed out!

I already have my list:
-mixing medium – water based
-matte texture
-crème color bases- white and black (great for contouring darker skin tones), and we’ll see if any other bases catch my eye
-pro blush palette with pro blush colors—so far I’m eyesing azalea and apple red, I’ve heard good things about them on Specktra.
-15 pan pro palette with the following pro eyeshadows – ground brown, soot, symmetry, deep damson, cobalt, rose, plum, lime (last time I was there I think I got the rest of the pro shadows but these ones were out of stock)
-shadester and sculpt shaping powder in pro pan(to put in my kit), I’ll need to take a look at one more for darker skin tones…any recs?
-I’ll take a look at the lippies as well – any recs for the pro line?

I've been making lists on post-its everywhere trying to get ready for this trip, lol. If you guys who are lucky enough to be near Pro Stores have any further recommendations, holler at a sister!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

By Popular Demand...Photoshoot Makeup

Hi Bellas,

You might remember this video where I showed a sneak peak into a little photoshoot I was doing. I got such a positive reaction on my makeup that I decided to do a tutorial.



So I recreated it using the exact same products. I put a little bit more time in this one though, lol, because at the photoshoot I kind of just slapped it on, ha ha.

Here's what I used (All MAC unless otherwise specified)

EYES
-too faced e/s insurance primer
-gesso e/s
-goldenrod e/s (pro color)
-orange e/s
-carbon e/s
-fascinating kohl pencil
-revlon colorstay liquid liner in blackest black
-elise false lashes
-max factor 2000 calorie mascara
-anastasia brow kit

FACE
-elf bronzer in warm tan

LIPS
-redd lipliner
-electro lipstick

Here's the actual tutorial:


It's funny because by random coincidence I was contacted to do the wedding makeup for a couple...and I went to school with the husband-to-be! He told me that he saw this video and was like , "whoa, no tiger eyes for this wedding. Just a bunch of conservative caucasian girls." LOL, poor guy thinks I'm probably going to make them show girls. I really can do natural makeup, I just like to do fun, dramatic looks on myself. Anywho...back to the makeup.

Here's the look:


Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Products I'm Loving RIght Now...

Hi Bellas,

I decided to do a little post on some items I’m really loving...some of them you may have seen me use in a video or two but I haven’t dedicated a blog entry or entire video to them. I tried to pick products that aren't from brand new MAC collections since EVERYBODY is excited about them, lol.

First off…

Mario Badescu Drying Cream

I got the samples in the mail like everyone else. Some of them are okay, some are pretty good. In particular, I love the drying cream. I know everybody has already tried it but I'm just getting onto it. It comes in a 5 gram sample jar and I think that it will be enough to last me for months. You really don’t need a lot. I probably use a drop the size of a pin head and place it directly on spots I want to cover. I usually don’t break out, but for some reason I’ve recently gone through a period where I had more than usual. I had a bump on my nose which was a pimple that hadn’t yet surfaced. I put the drying cream on there, and after two days it had disappeared. I never even saw the actual pimple because I got to the root first. On an actual pimple, I used the drying cream every night and morning and it went completely away after 3 days. I usually would leave it alone and it would take a week or more to disappear. I probably wouldn’t order the entire jar of drying cream but I love the sample!

Oil of Olay Thermal Foot Scrub

Okay, I’ll be first to admit that I’ve been slacking on my pedicures. I used to be on the ball but funnily enough everything took a back seat when makeup came back into my life. My skin isn’t like it used to be – baby soft and no calluses. As the years progress I have to put some work into getting my feet presentable. In the past I’ve used the pumice stones and various scrubs but they all take a lot of work and time. This Oil of Olay stuff is the bomb. You dampen your feet and then massage the scrub in. I know it’s called a Thermal scrub but I didn’t expect it to heat up so much when it hit my foot, it was awesome! As I rubbed it in I really felt the dead skin sloughing off. It won an award for best drugstore product of the year in its category, now I understand why.

MAC Tendertones

I feel like this Collection was really slept on. Right now I only have two. I kind of want more but I’ll just exercise some self-restraint on this one. In my purse I have Tread Gently, which is the lime/yellow colored one. I love it! The consistency is very emollient, almost like Rosebud Lip Salve. I like this better though because it smells like strawberry kiwi. It also has SPF 12 which is defintely a plus. When you put it on it comes off pretty sheer but makes your lips look like they glow and look really juicy because of the tint and little sparkle flecks. I’ve been going through some lip issues lately—my lips have been dryer than usual and they start to hurt if I don’t have some kind of lip product on them. I prefer this since I can get as much product as I need and it’s super moisturizing. I like the feeling of being able to rub my lips together and it being super emollient. I also keep Hush Hush, which is described as a sheer gold with yellow gold pearl, in my makeup drawer. If I actually wear makeup out, I’ll put this on instead of lipstick or lipgloss because it has just enough color. Good stuff!

ELF Bronzer in Warm Tan

Okay, I know we all have mixed feelings about ELF products. A few months ago I order about $30 worth of products. I thought, hey, this would be great to build my kit! Unfortunately 90% of the items remain unused. What I did use was the clear lash and eyebrow gel and I kind of just threw the bronzers in my kit. There are only three shades or bronzers, and they’re really skinny compacts that fit into my kit pretty well. I kind of neglected them for a while, but I gave them a second chance recently. The only problem is that when you dip your brush into it, a lot of product flakes off. You definitely have to tap excess off your brush and compact. I guess this is why it’s a dollar. However, the color goes on really smooth and even. I like Warm Tan for my complexion, which is the darkest one. It really makes a great contour/bronzing color. I use it with my Coastal Scents Pink Deluxe Buffer Brush and the two are a match made in heaven. I make sure to only use a small amount of the bronzer so it doesn't look overdone. I’m actually wearing the bronzer in my Cool Heat and Solar Bits video. I would definitely re-buy this.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

A Little Late...My Solar Bits look

Hi Bellas,

Sorry for the delay. This is my look using the solar bits and eyeshadows from the last MAC collection - Neo SciFi, Solar Fields, Future Earth. I chose to pair the eye products with viva glam V because I happened to be browsing the MAC site and noticed it described the lipsticks as having gold flecks...perfect for this look! It's a nude lip to go with the smokey eye...but it still has a little zing with the gold. It's definitely one of my top MAC lipsticks of all time.

I found it a little difficult to get the black ore to get really intensely black on it's own...but it came out nicely how it's a soft black fade. This is a good look for people who want to rock a more subtle smokey eye. Too bad the lightning isn't the greatest and you can't see the reflective quality of the solar bits. I filmed a tutorial but it stopped filming halfway through so I gave up...I hate when that happens!

What I Used:
-cash flow paint pot
-black ore solar bits
-bronzescape solar bits
-evening aura e/s
-revlon colorstay liquid liner in blackest black
-rimmel black kajal pencil
-ardell lashes
-anastasia brow kit

LIPS
-viva glam V lipstick

Cheeks
-elf bronzer in warm tan

Click pics to enlarge...





video

For my blog readers, you get a special treat. This is a video I filmed after I did the makeup and realized the camera wasn't recording. It's an update video I did last week before I filmed the MAC cool heat vids. You can see the makeup better on film. I'm not uploading this on youtube...it's strictly for my blogging beauties :) Hope you guys enjoy!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

M.A.C Cool Heat - Teal Eyes Tutorial




Hi Bellas,

Do you like my new look? LOL I am wearing the cool heat eyeshadows but I wanted to show off the new bandanna I bought for my BF. Isn't it totally hip hop? It's bright teal, brown, gold and has a huge skull on it. Love it! My BF actually pointed out that the bandanna matched my makeup so we took this quick pic. This isn't the actual tutorial look, lol, see below for the real entry.

I did my first look from the Cool Heat collection. The colors came out super vibrant which I love. I used delft paint pot and cash flow paint pot as bases. This made the colors a bit deeper...next time I think I'm going to lighten it up by using lucky jade shadestick as a base.

Without further ado...here's the look :)







Here's what I used (All MAC unless specified):

Face
-prep & prime face
-mineral satinfinish foundation NC42
-select moisture concealer NW37
-sculpt & shape duo in lightsweep and shadester
-msf natural med dark
-hipness blush
-msf ligh flush

EYES
-cash flow paint pot
-delft paint pot
-climate blue e/s
-blue flame e/s
-solar white e/s
-warm chill e/s
-gulf stream e/s
-cool heat e/s
-milani color brilliance pencil in purple
-revlon colorstay liquid liner in blackest black
-elise false lashes
-max factor 2000 calorie mascara

LIPS
-spice lip pencil
-high 90s slimshine

Friday, June 13, 2008

M.A.C Makeup - Cool Heat Haul and Swatches

Hey Hotties,

So as you know, yesterday I went during my lunch break to my local M.A.C freestanding store to pick up the Cool Heat collection. I usually go during lunch during the day of the release to make sure I can get my hands on the goodies. For the Neo-Sci Fi collection I wasn’t on the ball and went a few days later...lol...which might not seem like a big deal but to me I felt like a slacker. I definitely feel a responsibility to my blogging and youtube community to get my videos and reviews out on new M.A.C collections asap. With that said...I was really good...I got home last night and filmed my video, edited it, and uploaded to youtube. Woo hoo!

Here’s the video...I didn’t have time to take pictures of swatches but my girl Nessa has some great pics on her site, check her out!



A few thoughts on the collection...

I love all the eyeshadows...I mean all of them! Some are higher on the list than others, but I can see myself using all of them. I’ll definitely be rocking the teal eye look for the next couple of weeks!

Here’s my breakdown of each color:

Warm Chill: A soft aqua color-comes off sheer but when you build the layers, it looks awesome with the other teals. In the video, I got confused and didn’t mention it, but this is what I was actually wearing on my inner third of the lid.

Climate Blue: Beautiful color! It’s a rich, purplish blue color...more purple than blue...and it has little violet shimmers in it. It’s definitely a color not easily duped. Others have mentioned it to be chalky. I haven’t really noticed a problem so far.

Cool Heat: This is a color I wanted from the very beginning. It’s a vibrant teal...kind of like Big T. So gorgeous, love it!

Warming Trend: Gorgeous neutral color. A shimmery light brown. Great for all over lid/summer color. It’s definitely one of those colors that’s a good basic for anybody’s collection. To me it just screams bridal makeup.

Solar White: This looks whitish pink in the pot, but swatches to a pretty goldish cream color. This would make a great highlight, tear duct, or lid color. It’s a better ricepaper in my opinion.

Blue Flame: Like I mentioned in the vid, this is Deep Truth’s fraternal twin. If you have deep truth you probably don’t need it. I just got caught up in the excitement! I think Deep Truth is a little darker with more shimmer where Blue Flame is a bit brighter in color with subdued shimmer.

Gulf Stream: If you love teal, you must get this! It looks great on it’s own, and probably even better with a base. This seems like a sell-out color.

I also picked up a few slimshines:

Gentle Simmer: My fav lip product right. It looks like I’m wearing a frosty lipgloss but it’s just the slimshine on it’s own. To me, this is a plus because sticky lipglasses are not fun in the summer. I'm also going through this dry, sensitive lip stage and slimshines are perfect for both color and moisture.

Tropic Glow: This reminds me of a Barbie pink but a bit more sheered out. I’m not sure about this one...I’ll try it with a bit of lipliner underneath and see how it goes.

High 90’s: This once surprised me. It’s more pigmented than the others. A vibrant coral color...Honestly, I just like anything that is bright so I grabbed it. I probably should have tried it on first, oh well! I’ll try a lipliner with this too because on it’s own it doesn’t look right on my skin tone. Oh, and definitely pair it with a chapstick as a primer, cuz it showed all my lip ruffness and lines, lol, ewwww.

Other random items...
While I was there I also picked up refills of Brush Cleanser, Fix +, and for the first time cleanse off oil. I had read good things about it and I tried it for the first time last night. I love it! It’s not a thick oil like I thought it would be. It’s kinda a watery, clear consistency but when you put it on your face it suds and took everything off, including mascara. That’s more than I can say about my MAC wipes. It was a little messy though, but it does the job. I’ll probably do a more thorough review on that later.

By the way, yesterday I went to this event here in Atlanta called the Celebrity Style Lounge. You pay an entry fee and it’s in the ballroom of a fab hotel. You get free cocktails and they have all these vendors catering to women-fashion, shoes, beauty, massages, and candy! Let’s say I picked up an awesome, drool-worthy brush set from a-design. It’s originally $250, but I got it for $100, it was a steal! I’ll do a review after I’ve washed and tried it out separately. I’m so excited to go home and try them out. Here’s a sneak peak at one of the brushes in the set...isn’t it gorgeous? It’s the pointed head foundation brush, alone it retails for $32!



Till next time, ciao bellas!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

M.A.C Cool Heat has got me buzzing...

Hey Bellas,

Well I'm currently at work...of course I had to stop by my MAC freestanding store today to pick up Cool Heat. Oh my gosh, I loveeeeeeee the eyeshadows. Talk about gizorgeous!

This isn't my full entry, but I couldn't resist on telling you how much I love this new collection. It's definitely my fav of the last few collections...including Neo Sci-Fi, Naughty Nauticals, Fafi...

If you like bright blues and teals, this is the one for you. I got to work and even put on eyeshadows with my fingers while sitting at my desk, lol...I was just that excited!

I even ran into one of my youtube subscribers at the MAC store, how cool was that! That was my first time :) I think I was more excited than she...she said she recognized my voice, ha ha.

Well....back to work...I'll probably film my haul video tonight and look video tomorrow...stay tuned!

Southeast Asian Inspired Photoshoot...

Hi Bellas,

I recently did a photoshoot where we went for a lot of beauty shots with a vibrant jewel toned background. The photographer used an Indian Sari and maroon mosquito netting to accomplish the look. The model is Trinidian and with Arabic descent. I went ahead and did a smokey green eye and wine colored lip and she looked gorgeous. Her foundation was a bit tricky to match. She has a yellow/orange undertone to her skin. I needed to do some mixing of foundations to match her color appropriately. Don't ever be afraid to mix to get your best color. Also, don't feel scared to carry your foundation onto your shoulders and neck. The model had a few imperfections on her shoulders. I applied concealer using my 224 brush to give a softer more natural appearance and firmly pressed setting powder over it. The powder really prevents the makeup from smudging off.

Here's what I used:
FACE
-rimmel fix and perfect foundation primer
-cinema secrets foundation
-graftobian powder
-camera ready cosmetics blush
-MAC beauty powder in drizzegold

EYES
--rimmel professional brow pencil
-anastasia clear brow gel
-max factor mascara
-ardell lashes - top and bottom
-MAC technakohl liner in graph black
-Revlon Colorstay liquid liner in blackest black
-MAC paint in bare study
-MAC olive green pigment
-MAC shroom e/s
-MAC carbon e/s
-MAC bottle green e/s
-MAC juxt e/s

LIPS
-MAC pencil in vino
-MAC lipstick in Deep Attraction
-MAC gloss (wine color, can't remember the name)

You can click on the pics to expand...till next time, Ciao Bellas!




Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Sneak Peak into a photoshoot...

Hi Bellas,

If you watch my youtube page, you’ll know that I’ve been MIA for a little while now. I have a few videos recorded, but not completely edited. As you’ve seen from my videos, I always have to put music, pictures, and intro and outro slides in all my videos, lol. Part of it is that my boyfriend is really into stuff like that…he’s a perfectionist! Once I finish editing I’ll get that up asap.

I’ve been meaning to do a solar bits video for a while, but I’ve gotten sidetracked. I actually filmed one two days ago but it didn’t record like I thought :( And with M.A.C’s Cool Heat coming out, I feel like I need to get back on track with that collection. After that collection, I’ll make an effort to get the solar bits tut out.

Meanwhile, last night, we had a photo shoot where I give all my viewers a sneak peak. It was a lot of fun…a rock/hip hop theme with funky clothing and accessories. We had a guy and girl model both of whom I was able to put makeup on.

It’s just a fun little 1.5 minute video of me and one of my models goofing around. I hope you guys enjoy!

I'll have the finished pictures in a separate entry as soon as I receive them. I saw some of the raw photos afterwards and they were hot! They look straight out of an album cover or Vibe Magazine :)

Till next time, ciao bellas!


Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Boudoir Makeover

Hi Bellas,

A few weeks ago I was able to do a “boudoir” makeover. Let me provide a little background info for those of you not familiar with this term. Apparently, the trend in wedding photography is to have a “boudoir shoot” done before the wedding. Oftentimes, brides-to-be give their fiancées this special present as a pre-wedding gift. This usually involves hiring a MUA, photographer, and renting a room at a luxury hotel. From there, the blushing brides take sexy yet tasteful bedroom shots. Many women go to websites like www.theknot.com and split a room and coordinate photographers with other brides to save on costs.

I was asked by Katie to do her makeup so she could feel as sexy as possible for this shoot. I instructed Katie to send me some pics and descriptions of possible looks she wanted to wear, so that I could be prepared for our session. After some contemplation, she decided she wanted to do a Brigitte Bardot inspired look. Ms. Bardot is a famous French starlet from the 1950s. She epitomized the term “sex kitten” and was known for her trademark tousled, blond bed hair and cat eye/winged eyeliner makeup. Her beauty is timeless. We all know that winged eyeliner is a huge makeup trend out there...and as evidenced from this picture, it is a makeup style that lasts through the decades.

***Pic of Brigitte Bardot


After analyzing the photograph, I noted that the look mainly consisted of heavy, winged liquid eyeliner and nude/peachy lips. I took this as inspiration and decided to add a little smokiness to the eyes…using mainly grays instead of blacks to give a softer look.

On the day of the shoot, we ran into a few quirks. We got started a little later than we had planned so I had less time to do makeup. However, such interruptions are not unusual for MUAs to deal with. That’s why it pays to be prepared and organized. In this industry, one needs to be able to adapt to changing situations while remaining even tempered...that makes for one happy client!

In terms of makeup, I ended up smoking out her eye more dramatically per the client’s request. We added some falsies and liquid liner that finished off the look. The client had recently gotten a spray tan right before, so it took a bit of adjustment to match her face color to the rest of her bronzed body. In the end, she looked hot…a modern Brigitte Bardot if I do say so myself.

I didn’t realize it, but she gave glowing reviews of me on the knot. I was delighted to hear this because word of mouth is the best form of marketing. I've already received bridal makeup inquires from her referral. Without further ado, here are some pics of the shoot. Too bad we didn't get any before shots.

***Credit to: Photography by Shannon at www.shannonseye.net




Till next time, Ciao Bellas!

Monday, June 9, 2008

Weekend Updates...

Hi Bellas,

How was your weekend? Mine was so busy! Like I said, I’m still catching up with life after my trip and I’ve been so busy with makeup. As you can tell, I haven’t gotten a youtube video up in 2 weeks. Sorry! I finally uploaded my Kat Von D tutorial last night but something was wrong with my sound. I removed it and I’ll fix the sound and reload it tonight.

This weekend was jam-packed with gigs. Saturday morning I had to travel to do the makeup for 3 clients that were having professional photos taken. One of them was a pinay! The three were pretty much little to no makeup wearers so they wanted to try something glamorous and new. It came out fabulously! All 3 decided to wear false lashes and it really made their eyes pop. Each gig I do, I try to learn something new so that I can improve myself for next time. One thing I learned is that if I am doing extensive eyebrow grooming, I need to charge extra and budget in the time as well. The first client took me an extra 30 minutes to shape her eyebrows. However, the 30 minutes was well worth it because the before and after was amazing.

I’m also going to invest in getting pencil boxes for my kit. Right now, everything is organized in labeled clear bags. I noticed that when I’m rushing, it’s hard to get everything to fit back into the case neatly when I’m packing up. Pencil cases are harder and more compact, so they should be able to stack more neatly in my kit. I’ll post pics of the shoot soon!

I finished the shoot around noon, then had brunch at Cracker Barrel with the BF. Afterwards I hurried home to get ready for my next gig. I was booked for a designer who was participating in a fashion show with other up and coming Atlanta designers. All of my models were men. The fashion show as at this luxurious mansion and their were tents set up in the backyard. They had the runway circling the pool which was backed by a large stone waterfall. Talk about gorgeous! All of the male models were really easy to work with. I got to hang out in the men’s dressing area, woo hoo! I’ll post pics soon!

Sunday, I had more makeup to do. I've been working with a photographer to develop both our portfolios. On Sunday I did a different look on three models. The first was a retro glam inspired look--false lashes, subtle eye and bold red lips. The theme of the shoot was sexy teacher. The second look was bright bright flourescent colored eyes and a really modern lip--think kabuki mime with a nude lip and a bright pink stripe down the center. The last look was very ethereal with golds, teals and white. They all turned out really well. I'll post pics soon!

Meanwhile, I’ll get that Kat Von D Tutorial out asap. Thanks for being patient!

Friday, June 6, 2008

Posh Firm control powder brush

Hi Bellas,

So last night I was totally planning on getting some makeup stuff done…this included doing my solar bits look and tutorial. But of course I got sidetracked! Not only am I still exhausted from my trip, but i've had makeup stuff every night this week.

So sorry I’ll have to put that look on hold. So until I catch up with the rest of my posts…I’ll take this opportunity to give a review on a product I’ve had the opportunity to play with for the last few weeks.

Posh Firm Control Powder Brush

A few weeks ago I did a review on a 5 piece Posh Travel Brush set. I saw a few of the full sized brushes that I really wanted to try. One in particular was the firm control powder brush. When I contour with my sculpt & shape duo, I always use the MAC 168.

It’s a white haired angled blush brush that fits right into the hollows of my cheeks. I really love it, but I needed a back up that doesn’t cost a whopping $32.

Posh has a brush online that looks just like it. It’s called the White Angle Blush Brush.

I decided to go back to Bed Bath & Beyond to see it in person. In person, I noticed that it was a lot smaller than I expected. The head of a brush also looked a little flimsy.

After a bit of deliberation, I decided to try out the Firm Control Powder Brush instead. It too has an angled head and seems a lot more firm and full than the other.

The brush is listed as $20 online, $9.99 at bed bath & beyond. With my nifty 20% off, it ended up being an affordable $7.99.

I went home and shampooed and conditioned the brush. There was no shedding or bleeding. There is however, a bit of an odd smell. You might need Enkore's Deodorizing method for this one. I noticed the same with my Posh Kabuki brush. After letting it dry over night, I began to incorporate it into my makeup routine. I actually used the brush in my up and coming Kat Von D tutorial. The bristles are soft yet dense. It really creates a strong contour line where you need it. You just have to be careful to blend out the edges as the makeup is applied more heavily than with my 168, which is a fluffier brush.

In all, for $7.99 it’s a pretty good buy. I use this on myself with no problems. I use it everyday for contouring. I really like how the bristles are firm and don’t feel cheap and flimsy. I haven’t tried out too many other angled blush brushes though. Essence of Beauty has a very affordable angled blush brush that seems like a good dupe. Have any of you tried it?

In the meanwhile, next time you’re at Bed Bath & Beyond, break out that 20% off coupon and check this brush out.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Amazon Inspired Photo Shoot

Hi Bellas,

Last week I was able to do the makeup for an Amazon themed photoshoot. We wanted an edgy vibe and went with a more abstract makeup style. I ended up using my Urban Decay Deluxe Eyeshadow palette for the lips and some fluidlines for the eyes and that’s about it.

I’ve also included the before and after at the bottom. Feel free to click on the pics to enlarge them. Take a looksy!










Tuesday, June 3, 2008

My Online Interview...

Hey Bellas,

I got interviewed for my first online article. Check it out here. I've also pasted it below. Woo hoo!

Ren: Filipino American Make-Up Artist from Atlanta, GA
An Interview


I had the perfect opportunity to talk to Ren. She is a Filipino-American make-up artist from Atlanta, Georgia. We had the opportunity to talk about make-up, life, and lipgloss. Anyways, here is what she had to tell me.

Sarah: Kamusta ka na! Tell me a little about yourself...

Ren: I'm a 24 year old Filipino-American working in Atlanta, Georgia. I spent most of my life in Orlando, Florida before moving to Atlanta for college and have been here ever since. My interests include exploring different cultures whether through food or dance, and of course I love make-up!

Sarah: I just have to know, did you wake up one morning and decide "I am going to be a make-up artist". What made you become a make-up artist?

Ren: I've always had a passion for makeup and beauty in general. Ever since my middle school days I was an avid reader of beauty magazines. This developed into a fascination with trying out different brands of makeup on me and friends. I was my friends' go-to person for makeovers. I just loved how makeup could completely transform a person and bring such joy and excitement with a new look. Meanwhile, I continued to work in corporate America using the business degree I obtained in my undergrad years. I decided to finally turn my passion into a reality. After some preparation and encouragement from friends and family, I finally decided to pursue makeup professionally.

Sarah: Behind every great artist (in this case, make-up artist) lies a major source of inspiration, as a result. Tell me, who or what inspired you to become a make-up artist?

Ren: I've been inspired by many artists...I've taken bits and pieces from each and every one of them...these include Kevyn Aucoin, Molly Roncal...and several you tube Makeup Gurus---Pursebuzz, Enkoremakeup, Amy from AskMeMakeup, Stephie....the list goes on.

Sarah: I believe beauty is an emotion that goes beyond what we see. Something that is a huge part of our state of well being and chemical makeup. Tell me, how do you define beauty?

Ren: On my website I quote the age-old saying, "Beauty is only Skin Deep." I truly believe that. Makeup can only do so much for a person...it's a person's inner beauty---their kindness, charisma, and personality that really makes one beautiful. I make sure to surround myself with people who exude these characteristics. Makeup can always be removed...but a kind heart is a permanent source of beauty.

Sarah:
Now, moving onto make-up. Tell me a little more about some of the individual products, as well as, brands that you use on a daily basis...

Ren:
Like many, one of my favorite companies is M.A.C cosmetics. They have such an innovative line of bright colors and a product for nearly every need. It was difficult for me to find makeup growing up that works on minority skin, and this brand has never failed. I use their Mineralized Skinfinish Natural in medium dark nearly everyday as my go-to foundation. M.A..C has such a young, exuberant energy to the line. I also love Makeup Forever, Smashbox (Photofinish primer), Nars, and Urban Decay (deluxe eyeshadows). However, I can't forget my drug-store brands...I use many of these on an everyday basis. These included Revlon (I swear by Revlon Colorstay Liquid Liner in Blackest Black), Almay, Maybelline, Rimmel, NYC....it's important to try out different brands, both high-end and low end.

Sarah: Which products do you tend to use the most often? Which products are the most popular?

Ren: I would say I use M.A.C most often because their color pigmentation is among the best.. My clients also love M.A.C., especially their lipglosses and eyeshadows. I always make sure to finish off my clients' makeup with M.A.C's Fix plus spray...it's the key to making makeup look natural and to capture the dewy effect that everyone wants.

Sarah: Tell me a little more about the individual make-up looks that you do on a daily basis...

Ren: On myself, I tend to wear nude looks on an everyday basis. If I can do it in 10 minutes or less it's a plus. I love to use M.A.C's N collection to create this look. Combine it with some blush and chapstick and I'm good to go.

Sarah: Which looks do you tend to do the most often? What are the most popular?

Ren: I find that people love when I do crazy, bright looks on myself...these include aquamarine eyes and bright colors in general. However, I noticed that most clients like to stick to something a bit more basic...smokey eyes and nude lips are among the most popular.

Sarah: Tell me a little more about the individual inspired make-up looks that you perform on a daily basis...

Ren: I get a lot of requests to recreate looks that celebrities wear. Some of the most popular include Kim Kardashian, Kat Von D, and Jennifer Lopez.

Sarah:
What are some great beauty tips that you have, that are significantly important?

Ren: I think moisturizing is very important---both on skin and lips. It's important to have a smooth surface to work with, or else makeup will go on unevenly. It also helps to make sure you prep your skin with primers before hand. For example, if you have oily skin, it's good to apply a primer to the eyes like Urban Decay Primer Potion. This will help prevent your eyeshadow from creasing and it will keep the colors vibrant all day.

Sarah: What is the biggest beauty dont'?

Ren:
I think that a big no-no is bad eyebrows....I've seen McDonald arches or completely shaved eyebrows with uber-thin lines. I think eyebrows should find their natural arch. Take it easy with the tweezers and eyebrow pencils!

Sarah: Spring is here and Summer is near. Do you have any advice or tips for those individuals wearing make-up during the hottest season of the year?

Ren: I would suggest trying to go lighter on foundation. Hot weather tends to melt makeup and we want to avoid this. Tinted moisturizers and mineral powder foundations are great for the hotter seasons. If you want to stick with liquid foundation, try thinning it out with some liquid moisturizer for a lighter feel.

Sarah: In terms of eyeliner, if you had to choose between a pencil, liquid, or creme/gel based, which one would you choose? Why?

Ren: For beginners, I definitely suggest crème/gel based because it's the easiest. I personally love liquid eyeliner because you can't beat the precision. For my waterline I always use pencils.

Sarah: Lipgloss vs. Lipstick. Which product is superior? Which product reigns supreme? Why?

Ren: Hmmm, both! I think they're great on their own or paired together. Growing up I always thought lipstick was for Moms and older women---I was so wrong! Now I've discovered that oftentimes lipstick is necessary to get the right color payoff on lips. You couldn't get the 50's girl pinup look without some nice red lipstick.

Sarah: Have you had a crazy or bad experience with make-up? If so, what happened? If no, have you had anything that has been even remotely extreme happen?

Ren: For some reason, 90% of my makeovers I've had have turned out badly! Unfortunately, a lot of makeup artists do not know how to deal with Asian features...particularly the eyes. One incident, I had a makeup artist put red eyeshadow all over my eyes...both top and bottom. No eyeliner or anything. And they put bright pink circles on my cheeks. I looked like an Asian baby doll!

Sarah: The question is, does it stop here? Tell me a little more about some of your goals...

Ren: It's actually only the beginning...I want to eventually turn this passion into an empire. After working in Corporate America I've realized that I want to be my own boss one day. Look out world...the Makeup By RenRen brand and empire is coming.

Sarah: What do your clients think of you, Ren? What are some individual testimonials?

Ren: I've noticed that my clients really like the individual attention I pay to them. Throughout makeovers, I do constant checks to make sure they like the progress...whether it's too light, too dark...if they want more or less. I might think something looks great, but it's the client who has the final say. Many have said that they've had makeovers where artists have slapped on some makeup, without the opportunity for feedback. In the end, they ended up hating it because they didn't have a chance to comment. I like to treat each and every person with the individual attention they deserve.

Sarah: For those reading this interview, what would you like those people to know?

Ren: That there is a whole world out there for them to explore....if you have a passion, go for it. My whole life changed once I decided to do what makes me happy...the same can go for anyone with a dream and a desire to pursue it.

Ren: Check out my website: http://www.makeupbyrenren.com for tutorials, product reviews, and contact information for services. Also check out my youtube page where I post all my makeup related videos: http://www.youtube.com/user/makeupbyrenren and make sure to subscribe!

Ren: For personal inquiries about services, beauty related questions, or if you are a cosmetics company interesting in having a product reviewed, feel free to contact me directly at: makeupbyren@yahoo.com

Monday, June 2, 2008

Catchup and a Before and After...

Hi Bellas,

Sorry for the lack of posts. As mentioned in my previous entry I was out of town from Thursday Morning to late Sunday night. I went to New York and Connecticut for a bachelorette party, shopping, and a wedding. It was crazy but so much fun.

I wasn’t able to get out any videos before then like I planned. Instead I had two photo shoots that turned out fabulous. I’ll post pics soon.

While I unpack and get caught up on my emails and blogging, I’ll show you guys the makeover I did last weekend.


Here's my original post:

I did a makeup lesson this past weekend. My client is celebrating an upcoming 50th birthday bash in Jamaica and wanted to kick it up a notch with her makeup. She tends to use mineral makeup and a dark red lipstick and light gold eyeshadow. I wanted to still give her a mature look but try something a bit different.

I decided to use a warmer gold tone--amber lights e/s, and combined it with carbon e/s from MAC to give her a smokey look. I used her own revlon light cream/gold eyeshadow as a highlighter. Whenever I do makeup lessons on my clients, I try to use as many of their products as possible, showing them how to use them and incorporate other products and colors as well. Instead of a bright red/magenta lip, I lightened up her lips by using bateaux l/g from M.A.C's Naughty Nauticals line.

I noticed that her concealer was the wrong shade...it gave her an ashy look. The key with darker skin tones is to match the undertones of your skin.

So without further ado, before and after :) She was great before, and even better after.




Products Used:
EYES:
-MAC paint in bare canvas (to lighten up her eyelids)
-amber lights e/s
-carbon e/s
-Revlon light cream/gold e/s
-drugstore mascara
-Revlon colorstay liquid liner in blackest black
-Rimmel dark brown professional eyebrow pencil

FACE
-cinema secrets foundation
-bare minerals tinted finishing powder
-revlon bronzer
-camera ready cosmetics blush
-rimmel fix n perfect foundation primer
-fix plus

LIPS
-cork lip pencil
-bateaux lipglass