Thursday, April 24, 2014

Good to the last drop...a fun little makeup gadget review

Isn't it annoying when you've got product left in your container and you can't get it it just goes to waste?  There's a fun little makeup gadget made just to solve this problem....Every Drop makeup spatula:

I got mine from Amazon for around $7 (free shipping with Amazon Prime), they also have it at the Container Store for about $5.  You get a little mini spatula that looks like this:

Using the same principle as a kitchen spatula, the rubberized end allows you to scrape the bottle or jar to indeed use "every last drop" of your product.  This can REALLY come in handy, particularly when you're talking about $100 eye cream, or $50 foundation, but over time, the savings can really add up when you get a couple more uses out of your product before tossing.  Considering I spend thousands and thousands on makeup each year, and go through product VERY quickly, the $5 is more than worth it! 

I used it this morning on a jar of IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Redness (yes, you all know this is my current fave product!) This product is super pigmented and you don't need a lot of it to be effective, so using this spatula allows 2-3 more uses!

Something else to think should be using a tool to remove your product from jars and tubes so you're not introducing germs into the jar.  This is super important for makeup artists, but also important if you're the only one using your products.  Makeup artists use metal tools and spatulas for this purpose, and I have those too, but this little scraper is a nice addition...the metal tools I have are great for removing and mixing product from a full jar, but they can't grip the side of the jar like this one does.  It's a handy little thing! 

Germs, oil and bacteria all break down your cosmetics, so you want to keep your beauty goodies as pristine as possible so they apply well, perform well, and don't cause irritation.  (I LOVE products that come in tubes for this very reason, but not everything can come in a tube).  So...overall "Every Drop"'s a handy little tool that saves you money and keeps your cosmetics clean...all for less than $10...not bad.
Overall grade for value and creativity: A for a version of a spatula that's even MORE fun, the kind we all used to lick cake batter off of when we were kids!!!  Yummy.....

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Class of 2014 or Ad for Free People? You decide!

It was a lazy Sunday....nothing booked, so I had slept late and was hanging out with my boyfriend and the kids.   If you know me at all, you know how truly pleasantly weird that is...I'm usually getting up at 6am and going non-stop!  I was looking forward to a day of couch time and catching up on Scandal episodes when I got a call from a photographer I didn't know with a frantic.... "Can you help?  We need makeup for senior pics...stat!"  Me..."Um...when?".  "NOW!"  If I had a cape with MUA on it, I would've thrown that sucker on!   It'd be red with big ol' lips on it, naturally.  ANYWAY,  I packed up my case and headed to Fort Worth where I met the lovely Kelsey, her sweet momma and the amazingly talented photographer Heather Thorne.  Right away, I was super excited...Kelsey is gorgeous! She has incredibly long hair with a fun, hippie vibe..she's tall and has just a bit of an alternative vibe to offset her classic good looks.  Here she is without a stitch of makeup on as I got started:

And the before/after....

I'm telling you, gorgeous girl! She wanted to look natural, but also wanted to be sure her unexpected breakout was covered and that she looked pretty....these are senior pics, after all!  I created a look that both mom and daughter were happy with....fresh, glowing, but yet sophisticated in an age- appropriate way.  I used warm neutrals on her eyes, black and hunter green liner plus some flirty false lashes for pop.  Flawless skin and my signature flushed cheeks and rosy lip and she was ready to go.  You've gotta love it when you can make an 18 year old happy when it comes to makeup! I teased her roots a bit and then twisted sections of her hair around a curling iron for definition (but still loose and "undone" to fit her style) as Kelsey chose her outfits and Heather planned where to shoot around the Magnolia area of Fort Worth.  I could not WAIT to follow up with Heather and see how this shoot turned out...I just had a feeling, ya know?  Are you ready?  Check out these fabulous images...again, courtesy of Heather Thorne Photography...

I just love the boho chic vibe!!  The overall shoot wound up like a lookbook for a chic boutique or Free People, not your everyday senior pics, that's for sure. My senior pic involved floofy 80s hair and some kind of blue feathery thing around my shoulders...just one head shot in the school gym with a bunch of people in line behind me, boom...done.  Nothing special, but that's what everyone's senior pic looked like....yep, I'll say it...back in the day!   Wish I had a copy handy, I'd post it just for grins...and to show the contrast with how FAB these images are in comparison! Wow, things have really changed for the better in regard to senior pics...these show so much more personality. In the end, that lazy Sunday wasn't meant to be, but I'm so glad I picked up the phone and was available for this last minute session!  Can't wait to work with Heather again.  And.....happy graduation Kelsey! What a great way to celebrate......
I'll get to those Scandal episodes eventually....

Friday, April 18, 2014

Downton Abbey featured in Style Me Pretty!

So excited...just found out that a fun shoot from last year was featured in the prestigious wedding blog, Style Me Pretty!  This shoot was so much fun, and I love recreating that vintage vibe.  Several talented vendors came together to provide elements for a fully realized Edwardian era Downton Abbey, but infinitely more glamorous!  Have your cup of proper British tea?  Ready to swoon?  Here are just a few images from the shoot....


The makeup for this look was a bit of a challenge, because proper society women of that era didn't wear makeup. Hmmm...a bit too bland! So....I had to create a look that was gorgeous, but yet very natural....easier said than done.  I used soft neutrals on the eyes for a bit of definition, created perfect, porcelain "British" skin, and just a slight flush to lips and cheeks with subtle, flirty lashes.  Like the look?  It's a classic look that would actually work for any bride!  (Note: Be sure to check back to see the same model made up for a totally different'll be shocked at just how different she looks!) 

We had the most fabulous, talented and FUN group of vendors working on this project, I was thrilled to be a part of it!  We're all incredibly proud of this gorgeous shoot, we hope you enjoy the results.
The Creative Team

Photographer - Peyronet Photography
Planning and Styling -  Minted Artistry
Florals – Justine’s Flowers
Vintage Furniture and Accessories – Gold Dust Vintage Rentals
Hair – Renn Traylor
Linens – La Tavola
Sweets – Tart Bakery
Chairs and other accessories – May I Serve U
Venue – T&P Station

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Hire a Professional Makeup Artist? DIY? Tips for Both - (Featured on Tami Winn Events Blog)

When Tami Winn Events contacted me and asked for a blog interview, I was more than happy to help!  I LOVE tips and tricks myself, and I'm pretty sure most people love to learn a lil' something new themselves.  In case you're not familiar, Tami Winn and her staff are well known wedding and event specialists here in Fort Worth, TX....they create fantasy environments and lush florals for many exclusive weddings in the area!  They ROCK.  Attention to detail, amazing taste...these girls know what they're doing.  I have worked with Jamie and Tami on weddings, of course and I actually did Tami's own makeup for the 360West "Planners" Photo shoot for the Spring issue.The girl's got GREAT skin and a fabulous smile! (See pic at right....Photo courtesy of Tracy
Autem Photography...check out the article for full list of credits from this incredible "Vanity Fair" style shoot!)

For the interview, they wanted to share with their followers a discussion about hiring a professional vs. DIY makeup, and tips for both.  Wedding planners know all too well how great makeup can make....or break...your otherwise perfect wedding, that's for sure!

TWE agrees with me on this should hire a professional makeup artist for your wedding!  Once we covered that topic, they wanted to know for brides who don't hire a professional, what are some basic tips (we'll get back to that in a minute).  Obviously, I'm pretty biased...I think professional makeup is crucial for weddings and special events!  Just ask someone who didn't hire a professional who wishes she had....and then ask your wedding professionals who can back this up.

Only a professional knows how to truly highlight your features to their best advantage, while applying makeup what will photograph well AND last. We know how to make you look like the most gorgeous version of yourself that you've ever's just not the same as everyday makeup, and it's worth it.  Period. As one bride recently told me "My friend who got married last didn't think makeup was important...her wedding makeup didn't look good and she doesn't like her photos...she really regrets skipping it.  I don't want that to happen, plus it's my wedding day...I want to look AMAZING in front of my new husband and all my friends and family!" That bride knew what she wanted and what was important, and on wedding day, she had zero concerns about how she'd look or if her makeup would last.  Beauty plus peace of mind!  Budget in professional hair and makeup, you won't regret it.

For total DIY brides who simply don't have the budget or insist upon doing their own?  Well, I've got advice for you as well.  First off, consider booking a LESSON with a local professional.  Not all artists teach lessons, but many do...I personally love to teach!  I am happy to book a session to go step by step with you through your makeup routine, what works, what doesn't and then show you how to do your own makeup.  Find a local artist who's work you really admire and is recommended by your other wedding professionals and start there.  Many destination brides will book me for this service if their budget doesn't allow them to take me with them.  (Insert frowny face...I'd rather go with you to Belize, but hey, we've got to be realistic...not everyone can swing that!)  Also, many, many brides will book a lesson in the months following their wedding so they can learn how to create a fab look anytime.

 If for some reason you must do your own makeup on wedding day, booking a lesson beforehand could make all the difference! If you're doing total DIY, invest in quality makeup and decent brushes....stick to rosy cheeks and lips (look good on everyone), and a classic overall look.  Learn how to apply lashes, and blend EVERYTHING.
Great products and tools are a must, plus PRACTICE.  Your makeup won't look good if you don't do run throughs to test your look.  Final tip?  Wear plenty of blush!  Blush never shows up well in photos, you need more than real life.

To read the full blog post from the interview I gave with even more tips and tricks, click here.....

Thanks again to Tami Winn Events for featuring me on their blog this week! 

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Spring is here! (AKA, Can I stop sneezing long enough to write this post?!?)

I live in Fort Worth, TX...
I don't know what's in the air where you live, but here....wowza, we have all kinds of major pollen inducing plants and trees!  Allergies are MAJOR, especially in spring and boom...I've got 'em.  I've probably sneezed 100 times this morning alone!  (Thank God for Puff's Plus...this is NOT the time for cheap, store brand tissue....)

So, how's a glam girl gonna look put together in allergy season?  Watery eyes, sneezing, puffy eyes.....none of it feels attractive.  Kind of like having a non-stop cold, right?  Well, here are a couple of tips I've put together for you to combat seasonal allergies, and yes....the same tips will work for cold/flu season as well!

1. GET THE GOOD KLEENEX.  No joke, the softer the tissue you can get, the less redness and chapping you'll have on your nose.  Yes, I learned this lesson the hard way so you don't have to!  Spring for the Puffs Plus with lotion.  You're welcome.

2. Moisturize more than night, coat your nose with moisturizer, or if it's really chapped, petroleum jelly.  You want to avoid the rough and flaky skin that is really tough to cover with makeup.

3. IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Redness.  You. MUST. GET.  This stuff is genius, and you'll see I mention it at lot on my Instagram and facebook posts.  It's highly pigmented and has a tiny bit of green to magically cover redness.  It only comes in one color and believe it or not, that shade works for most people!  If it's too light for you, use a bit to cover redness and then use your regular foundation on top...redness, gone.  No lie, probably the #1 product in my kit right now!

4. If your eyes are red and puffy, or allergies are causing dark circles, a great trick is to do a smoky eye!  Sounds like the exact thing you shouldn't do, but it actually works.  Make it look like that darkness is INTENTIONAL!  Use soft shades of gray or navy or neutral taupes...stay away from plums or warm browns that could bring out redness even more.  Blend well, add liner on upper and lower lids (on lower lid, liner on your waterline and use shadow buffed in with a small brush below that for a soft look) and you'll look sophisticated, not tired and puffy.  Try it, it works!

Good luck ladies!  I hope these tricks make you feel prettier as you stop to smell the roses....and then sneeze. Achooooo!!!!!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Too Much Makeup, Tammy Faye and the (hopeful) death of the Spider eye trend

Depending on your age, you may or may not have heard of Tammy Faye Bakker.  She passed away in 2007, and sadly became famous due to a huge scandal with her then preacher hubby.  But she was REALLY famous for wearing way, way, WAY too much in point:

Too much of everything, no blending and those spider eyes....yikes!  She was the butt of countless jokes on late night TV, and will be remembered in popular culture as looking tacky.  Poor thing, may she rest in peace!  I can't say anything about who she truly was as a person, and she might have been a very lovely woman,  but this makeup doesn't say confident, sophisticated or says "I'm putting on a mask".  Her makeup entered the room before she did!  You don't want that as your calling card.  Flash forward to current times.... I have so many clients who come to me and are really nervous about having their makeup done.  They are fearful of looking overdone, tacky or not like themselves.  If I had a dollar for everytime I've heard:

"I just want to look natural, like myself but better..."
Know what's funny?  More than half of the girls who tell me they want the "natural look" really don't...they just don't want to look like that ^^^^!!!  They want impact, or smoky eyes or false lashes or glamour, but they are afraid they might look like like a drag queen.  Or hoochie.  The truth is you can wear plenty of makeup if it's blended well, the right colors for you and right for the situation and for YOU as a person. There are many options between a bare face and the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills look.  Think about this....when you see women out in public and you think "wow, she's got WAY too much makeup on",  what you're really seeing is:

- Too much product
- Lack of blending and harsh lines
- Wrong colors for her particular skin tone
-  Wrong makeup for situation, lifestyle, or personal style

Let's break those down a bit: Too much product....
In this age of "more is more", that isn't the case with makeup!  The secret to pro results is using as little product as you possibly can to get the results you want.  This takes patience, time and practice.  Start with a tiny bit of concealer...blend.  Does it cover?  No?  Add a tiny bit more, blend..check again.  And so on and so forth. Use highly pigmented products so you can use less product to get the results and coverage you want. Don't just cake it on!

Lack of Blending - this one wears me out!!  My rule?  Blend, blend and blend some more.  Think you're done?  You're not, blend more! (Anyone who's ever booked a Lip Service private
Blend, blend, blend!! (Makeup: Jennifer Trotter)
lesson has heard this one!) Again, patience, time and practice, plus decent brushes to get the job done.  If you slap it all on, it looks slapped on...
You should never see any harsh lines anywhere....a buffed on appearance is softer and more sophisticated, and definitely makes you look younger.  A well blended smoky eye is appropriate anytime!  It doesn't have to be super dark and goth. Just check out this example!

Wrong colors -  a pale blonde shouldn't wear the same colors as JLo or Beyonce, but yet I see this all the time! We are all so tones, hair, style, face shape....all need to be taken into consideration when choosing cosmetics.  Makeup is meant to enhance your natural beauty, so if you're puzzled.... you can't go wrong with soft black or dark brown eyeliner and mascara, rosy pink cheeks and lips....all look good on absolutely everyone.  For eyes, soft plums and taupes work on nearly every skin tone too....easy!  Do people comment on your makeup, or your beauty?  If it's your makeup, could be the wrong colors....
The right colors will make you look healthy and glowing!  And not like a clown....
Wrong makeup for situation or personal style: this one can age you faster than anything!  Just like you don't wear the same clothes to walk the dog as you wear to a black tie event, your makeup should adjust accordingly.  If you're a stay at home mom who wears yoga pants and t-shirts daily, you probably shouldn't have on false lashes and daily highlight and contour for carpool and grocery store runs.  Date night with the hubby?  Perfect time to break out the red lipstick and false lashes for all out glamour with your hot dress!  If you are an executive and wear strong suits daily, just swiping on a bit of gloss may not be'll want to be sure your dark circles are covered and you look fresh and awake, so some foundation and blush may be in order.  In short, if you're wearing the exact same look for a PTA meeting, night out with the girls, important work presentation and the gym?  You are missing the mark, and worse, might look older than you are.  We've all seen the lady at the gym with a full face of makeup and false lashes just sweating away on the's very kind of 80's, isn't it?   Or the woman at the black tie wedding who didn't wear makeup and looks like she looks like she doesn't care about the formality and importance of the event.  Don't be that chick.  Just like all of these occasions call for different clothing options, your hair and makeup should adjust too.  Think about YOU....your style AND the situation you need to be in that day...tailor your beauty routine accordingly.

One last note.....that DEFINITELY ties in the with the "too much makeup" theme of this post:

To all the ladies I see out in public with 12 coats of mascara, IE "spider eyes":  I have news for you, you're not fooling anyone...we know that's gobs of mascara and not your lashes. Not that it looks anything like lashes, but more the name implies...freakin' spiders.  On your eyes.  Not cute! Seriously....just stop. PLEASE. Get extensions or buy false lashes in bulk....either will look better if you really feel you need more impact and drama.  If you're tempted to "spider it up", I hope you'll think of Tammy Faye and pare down...take a chance and come out of the shade of those lashes!   We don't want to hear jokes about you on Jimmy Kimmel.  Love, JT from Lip Service

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

A Real Life "Princess" Bride

Just got back some great photos from Taylor's wedding just a few weeks ago, she's stunning!  She looked exactly like how little girls imagine real princesses look...just dreamy. Might as well name this girl Buttercup! (She married, Jason...not Wesley...FYI)  I did a boudoir shoot for Taylor, and makeup for her shower, so we've been talking for months and have gotten to know each other....she's just as sweet as she is gorgeous.  Yes, really! 

 For the big day, L'Image salon in Mansfield took care of the hair and they were nice enough to create plenty of space for me to set up so we could do all hair/makeup onsite....10 faces for me!  I did the bridesmaids and Taylor's mom first, and then Taylor.....

And yep, I'm used to all the bridesmaids hanging out and watching me!  It doesn't bother me at all...I usually throw out some makeup tips and even answer makeup questions while I work.  At this point, everyone was getting really excited...Taylor was being transformed into a BRIDE....

I always try to get a few pics with the bride, thankfully the phographer (Beau Vaughn Photography) was right there and snapped a couple pics. Some brides I get to know pretty well, others not as much, but seriously...I'm so lucky!  They are all such nice girls and I love getting to play a part in one of the biggest days in their lives.  Cheesy, but true...#blessed! Taylor was off to Aristide Event Center in Mansfield, TX...a lovely wedding venue that resembles a castle...perfect for a real life "princess" about to get married!  Dress on...check, flowers in the hair...check....
What did I tell you?  What little girl (or grown girl) doesn't dream of looking this magical when she walks down the aisle?

 One last pic and a few notes about how I created her wedding day look.  She wanted whimsical, gorgeous and special, but not too over the top.  I used a combo of white, gold and bronze cream shadows (they are SUPER long lasting) from Maybelline, along with a few other shades in gold and bronze from other palettes.  This created drama on her eyes, but without any harsh lines or too much color.  I did a classic winged liner, which she knew she loved from the previous times I did her makeup....false lashes, berry cheeks (cream and powder...again long-lasting!), all set with micro-milled setting powder for a flawless, airbrush finish.  I added some subtle shine with a silver/pink and gold shimmer powders from MAC to give her an ethereal glow...not too much, a lot of sparkle doesn't photograph well. I've just gotta tell you...the moment when the bride looks in the mirror when I'm finished, beams back at me with the "Oh my gosh, I LOVE it" absolutely the best part of being an artist, and getting the huge hug and thank you is the bonus!  Knowing that I am able to create the look that makes each bride feel beautiful when it counts most is very rewarding and it flat out just makes me smile!  Here's one last pic of the lovely (inside and out!) bride.....
I hope she and Jason have an amazing life together!  I know their fairy tale celebration last month was a great way to kick things off with memories they'll never forget...including all the "kissing parts" and the happily ever after.......