Thursday, October 23, 2014

Breakouts...learn how to treat, hide and prevent!

Breakouts.  They can happen at any age, and usually at the worst possible moments....big interview, first date...even wedding day.  So, what should you do?  First off, I have to give a disclaimer:  I am NOT a dermatologist or esthetician.  I AM a pro makeup artist who is incredibly scrupulous and dedicated to great skin care and I'm fairly educated on the basic principles of skin and how it reacts in various situations. If you are having major  or ongoing skin problems, please visit a derm or licensed esthetician for help.  If you're not really having major issues, but just want to know how to deal with the occasional zit...these tips are for you!

1. CLEANSE GENTLY- Be VERY gentle with an active breakout!  You might feel like you want to scrub your face or use a lot of toner or pack on every product you can lay your hands on, but this can....and usually will make your breakout worse. Keep it simple and just use a gentle cleanser and don't forget to use an oil-free moisturizer.  If your skin gets too dry, it'll produce more oil to compensate...NOT what you need right now.  Acne can rear it's ugly head (probably my grossest pun EVER!) as the result of many factors, but the last thing you should do is irritate and dry out your already inflamed skin!

2. HANDS OFF - This is common sense and easier said that done, but here it is.. don't pick.  Just like your
mom always told you, it spreads germs and bacteria and makes your breakout worse.  Plain and simple, it's MUCH easier to cover a little red bump than dry, crusty skin!  If it's your wedding or bridal portrait day and I'm doing your makeup?  Don't touch your breakout...seriously, it's SO much easier for me to cover a zit that's been left alone versus one that well...hasn't been.  Cleanse as usual, apply acne medication just to the bump and then hands off.  If  it's too late and you already picked, try applying an anti-bacterial gel like Neosporin to speed healing and prevent infection.

3. PRIME -  If you're trying to cover the breakout yourself, you'll need to use a good primer.  Primer doesn't clog your pores and doesn't impart oil into your sits on top and gives your skin a supple, slightly more plump appearance that is crucial to covering any bumpy texture.  Primer will
help your foundation glide on top of your skin as well as help it adhere and give you the coverage you need right now.  Try WhipHand's Set the Stage of my favorites!

4. COVER - Use a color correcting foundation, I like IT Cosmetics Bye Bye has just a touch of green that totally cancels out the redness from a breakout but blends into most skin tones beautifully.  Sponge on lightly using a dampened beauty blender (don't pack it on!) until the redness is gone. If your spot needs a bit more
coverage, then use a tiny concealer brush (I love these from ELF...bonus, they're only $1 at Target!)to dot a little extra foundation and carefully blend the edges. DON'T make the mistake of trying to cover pimples with concealer, especially a lighter, brightening one for use in your undereye area!  The lighter color will make your zit more obvious...cover with foundation or concealer that matches your skin as closely as possible.  Set with a a light dusting of finishing powder applied with a big fluffy brush to set.  Don't cake on powder!  A light dusting is all you need.

5. KEEP IT CLEAN - Keep your tools and makeup scrupulously clean...wash your hands before and after applying makeup, cleanse your brushes regularly, wash out sponges with anti-bacterial soap after each use.  You should do this all the time, but it's especially important if you're having an active breakout.  Borrow a pro trick and use a small spatula (like this) and a palette...scrape out a bit of foundation, primer or blush from
the container and use from the palette.  The main container always stays pristine this way!  It's much more sanitary, and you'll get better results from your products as well.  Sanitize palette and tools with alcohol after each use.

True story:  I had a client who kept getting pimples on her nose and chin and was super frustrated.  She came to me for advice on what makeup to choose, she was convinced her makeup was the culprit....she was at her wit's end and fortunately had already made an appointment with the dermatologist the following week.  When I was doing her makeup, I talked her through her makeup and skin care routine and guess what? She had in NEVER once washed her brushes or makeup sponges! Literally years of dirt, bacteria and dead skin cells going back on her face every time she applied her makeup....a much more likely cause of acne than her non-comedogenic foundation.  She mistakenly thought that since she wasn't sharing her tools or products that all the cleaning and sanitizing wasn't necessary, but she couldn't be more wrong.  Keeping everything that touches your face...your hands, your tools, brushes and cosmetics super clean can prevent a wide variety of skin issues.  The routine is easy once you get used to it, and it's way cheaper to keep your stuff clean that pay for a dermatologist visit!

These are my tips to manage and conquer the occasional breakout or random pimple that all of us experience from time to time, but please note, if you're experiencing acne often or with a degree of severity, please be sure to make an appointment with your dermatologist for a long-term solution!!  There are many medications and courses of treatment that your doctor can prescribe if your skin issues are more severe.  For the rest of us, follow these tips and when that random zit shows up, you'll know exactly what to do.   If your skin looks great, you'll feel looks fabulous and so do you!  What tricks have you tried to cover breakouts?  What worked...and didn't?  Share in the comments below.....

11/19/2014 - UPDATE: I just found out that the popular Beauty Blog "Beauty High" used some of my tips in their recent post on preventing breakouts!  Check out the full article here to read my tips plus tips from other beauty pros!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Could you Wear You Tube Makeup in Real Life? These Refinery 29 Staffers did....

There is some CRAZY stuff happening in the land of makeup lately...have you noticed?  Overdrawn eyebrows, false lashes at PTA meetings, major highlight and contour in line at McDonald's.  As a makeup artist, I'm all about experimenting and playing with your look, but holy cow...I've never seen so many drag queen-esque women running around.  Thanks You Tube and Instagram!

Image Refinery 29

Refinery 29 is an awesome lifestyle/fashion/beauty blog, but to me, articles like this are what they do experimenting at it's finest!  Using their own staffers, talented Makeup Artist Nick Barose applied some current trendy looks...each person had to wear the makeup all day and gauge reactions from strangers and loved ones.  Want to find out what happened?  Click here to read the full article!

Have a great weekend!!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

6 Reasons Why You Need A Pro Makeup Artist for Your Wedding

When talking to booked brides, prospective clients and other wedding vendors, I'm often asked "What's REALLY different about using a pro to do your makeup on wedding day?"  I thought to myself...GOOD QUESTION!

So, what IS different about having a pro artist apply your makeup on your wedding day?  A LOT!  In this age of DIY, many of you really want to know exactly what you're getting when you hire a pro versus doing your own or having a friend help out.  What are you paying for....what goes into it? When it comes to wedding day makeup, here are just a few reasons why you should hire a pro:
In My Kit.....

1. Quality Products  - Pro artists have tested products extensively and know what works and what doesn't, and it's definitely not about buying the most expensive or trendy cosmetics, either.  I test every potential new product on myself for a month...if it passes the test of no irritation, looks great, performs well,  has plenty of pigmentation, lasts all day....then I purchase another one for my kit....I don't care if it costs $5 or $50, it must pass the test.  Random  and untested stuff doesn't go into pro kits, we can't risk it!  Most bridal MUA's use a combination of prestige products, pro brands and drugstore finds that we know perform under pressure.
Set up and ready for wedding day!
 We have thousands and thousands of dollars worth of product, tools and brushes to accommodate any skin tone or situation and we know what's in our kit not only looks beautiful, but really works and lasts the way it's supposed to.  You'd spend far more than our wedding day fees to go out and purchase all of the products and tools we're gonna use to make you gorgeous, that's for sure! You can't create a beautiful look without the right products and tools....we've got 'em and know how to use 'em.

2. Knowledge - As Pros we know how to blend to get the perfect shade of lipstick, exactly what eye shadow will make your hazel eyes pop and which foundation will look best on your Mom's dry skin. Through education and years of experience, I can look at each woman and know how to enhance her features in the best way possible based on her style, bone structure and face's what artists do!  Your everyday makeup is probably just fine...for EVERYDAY.  This isn't just another day at the office...this is your wedding, it's vital that you look your absolute best!  You need makeup in the perfect shades for you that has been blended properly, with lashes the right length and shape for your eye shape....and all the
Vanja D Photography
other details that go into a flawless face.  We know how to take your inspiration photo and translate it into your dream wedding day look, but we'll also use the experience we have to steer you away from too much contour or convince you to try a brighter lip that fits your personality.  We know what works best...for YOU!

3. Technique - This goes along with knowledge, obviously, but it's more about HOW pros apply products versus how you do it at home.  You can have top notch products and still get crappy results if they aren't applied the right way!  Certain products require a degree of manipulation that few amateurs really understand....which primer to use with certain skin types, choosing brow powder or pomade, which foundation will cover a specific complexion issue, which shimmer powder will produce the look that you've pinned over and over on Pinterest.  When to use brushes, when to blend
Lightly Photography
with a sponge, what size brush to use to achieve a certain effect.....we've developed all of these techniques over the years.  Take that PLUS the great products? It results in the ultimate goal...flawless wedding day makeup that enhances your features in the best way possible.

4. Makeup that LASTS - how many times have you done makeup on yourself...just to look in the mirror at lunch and realize it totally disappeared?  This is a common complaint I hear from clients all the time!!  Yet another reason why you need to book a pro, because we use primers, sealers and application techniques that result in a long lasting and totally budge-proof look. Staying power like that is very difficult to accomplish on your own, especially when you're talking photos, ceremony, can be a long day.  Something many of us do?  When we get pics back from photographers, we skip to the last photos!  Personally, I love to see that the makeup still looks good and hasn't faded, and I always check (just like in the example below from Katherine's wedding last year!)  Wedding day makeup has to last a minimum of 12 hours,  a pro can create the perfect look that lasts from the first kiss to the last dance.

Tracy Autem Photography

5. Specialized Customer Service - We KNOW weddings, inside and out.  After 20 plus years, I have seen, heard and experienced nearly everything you can imagine on wedding day, and I know how to handle it.  Ice storm and bridesmaids are 3 hours late?  Been there, done that.  Bride getting stressed and needs someone to hand her a cocktail and remind her to breathe?  I'll be your bartender/counselor for a few minutes!  Bridesmaid needs to be talked into wearing more makeup than just Chapstick?
 I'll figure out how to get her just glam enough without pushing her too far out of her comfort zone.  Makeup artists who specialize in bridal makeup know all of this, and a whole lot more!  We know exactly how long it takes to do makeup for each person as well as take care of details so that all you and your girls have to do is sit back and get beautified.  Incidentally, do make sure the makeup artist you choose DOES have bridal experience.....this isn't the time to try out a newbie who's never dealt with a cranky bridesmaid who's hungover from the rehearsal dinner, a variety of skin tones and ages that all require different products or an anxious mother who's never had her makeup professionally done.  Pros who specialize in weddings will make your day easy and stress-free, just like you expect from all of the other vendors you've hired.
Jenny Martell Photography

6. Photos and Video You'll Love - Last, but definitely not and video.  You've spent thousands on choosing the perfect photographer and videographer....this is NOT the time to scrimp on makeup and hate the results of their hard work!!   Ask any wedding vendor, and they'll tell you....bad makeup can ruin the bride's day, but it will also ruin photos and video as well....and poof!  There go your memories.  It's not easy to craft a makeup look that is equally stunning in person AND in photographs, but a pro does exactly that.  You'll look fabulous as your new husband sees you up close, but you'll also look great in the photos and videos too...this is crucial. You'll be so glad you hired a makeup artist every single time you open your wedding album or watch your wedding video!

Well, there you have it....and honestly, there are even more reasons I'm not listing!  It's more fun, more luxurious, less stressful....on and on. I've covered a few more reasons to hire professional makeup for not just you, but your entire wedding party in this article , so be sure to check that out too! (Hint...a consistent look makes all the difference!) 
So...whether you want to book me or another DFW area artist, or even if you're reading this in
Lifestyle Portrait Photography

another city or country and are considering hiring an artist where you live....think about all of these reasons as you budget for wedding day beauty.  Sure, it's not cheap to hire a talented and reputable makeup artist, but it's a worthwhile investment, and a vital element that can make or break your wedding.  You've only got one shot to look amazing on your big day, so don't take chances.   My wish for all of you is to look as lovely and happy as these brides did on their wedding DESERVE it!

(Makeup in all photos by Jennifer Trotter of  Lip Service Makeup)