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P A R T Y P E R F E C T: HOLIDAY LOOKBOOK VOL.2

 

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Today is all about glitter eyeshadow!  It’s Friday and some of you may already be heading to a Christmas or work party.  This quick tutorial is so quick and easy that anyone can do it!  You will just need a few items…

  • An amazing foundation – matte looks best with this type of look because it accentuates without over-empowering
  • A lip color that you love, you can do matte or glossy with this look
  • A thick glitter eyeshadow
  • A cheap, flat eyeshadow brush that will you don’t mind ruining
  • False lashes elevate this look but they’re not necessary

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I would recommend doing all of your makeup first and then saving the glitter application for last. I used the “Bleached” shade by Wet N Wild for this look & I also bought this brush to go with it because I knew there was a good chance I wouldn’t ever get all of the glitter out of the brush (I was right.)  This look is fun because it incorporates glitter but it’s not overly flashy.  It’s subtle and it’s pretty because it helps your eyes to sparkle even more. #goals

Once you’ve done all of your makeup, tap your flat eyeshadow brush into your glitter, start with less than you normally would.  Apply it by using tapping motions while letting it dry.  Add more or less depending on your own style.  You can also use this glitter for an undereye eyeliner, in which case green or red would also look fab.

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GET THE LOOK:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Makeup Most Wanted

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Today I’m sharing some of my top secret info with you…

Some makeup artists choose to protect & hide their kits as children of their own, never revealing any of their secrets or products.  But I am a big believer in empowering and encouraging and so with that, today I wanted to share 3 of my most favorite products that I use in my professional kit!  These are the products that I know I can rely on and use to make clients (like the lovely bridesmaid Krista above) look amazing on W-day.

Let’s roll!

1.) MAC Paint Pot in “Soft Ochre” $22

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Here’s why I love this paint pot from MAC: yes it is designed to be used as an eyeshadow primer but, I also love it for opaque coverage on the lid by itself.  Sometimes we don’t want to do 3419 steps in our morning routine, or sometimes our eyelids are super red from allergies…this paint pot conceals like the real deal.  The trick is to layer this onto the lid heavily with a cream brush. By doing so it creates a beautiful, wide awake look on your eyes.  This trick also benefits people who have smaller or closer set eyes, creating the illusion of big and bright!

And don’t let me forget to mention that it keeps shadow & liner in place all day long.

2.) MAC Prep + Prime Highlighter in “Light Boost” $27

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This pen is magical!!  No but really, this pen has taken the place of some of my heavy duty concealers which is nutso considering the fact that it is SO thin!   It brightens like a dream and it’s the one item that can really elevate your look and your makeup.  I apply it under the eyes, on the chin and between the brows for a 3D effect.

3.) Ardell Lashes in “Demi Wispies” $4-10

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Honestly, I use this set on about 90% of my brides.  They are my tried-and-trues and they never ever fail me.  Even if someone wants more of a natural look I just cut off the end and place the smaller part of the lash onto the outer part of the eye, does that make sense?  So you’re using that smaller ended piece to open up the eyes and create that “doe-eyed effect.”

They are also available in a multi-pack option so be sure to buy that so that you can have a few on hand for the weekend! #dancingsenoritaemoji

I hope you enjoyed taking a peek into my kit and hopefully it gives you ideas on what to shop for the next time you head to the makeup store!

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Glamour Itinerary

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Today we are covering the necessities for skincare perfection, the glamour itinerary that you need to keep you looking your best year-round.

If this chart sounds a little labor heavy to you realize that most of these tips take very little time to actually do, seconds really.  You can keep alcohol wipes in your desk at work and clean your phone as soon as you sit down for the day.  If your budget doesn’t allow for a monthly facial treatment, make it quarterly.  Also, schedule your skincare checkup every year on your birthday that way you know you are continually booking that on an annual basis.

This chart can easily be adjusted to fit your individual needs, the main point is that you stay consistent with your skincare routines.  Consistency is the key to any and all success!


Click here to read up on how to properly clean your brushes and find out my favorite brush spray cleaner! 

 

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Makeup Minimalist

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“The best way to enjoy your favorite things every day is to only own your favorite things.”

When I became a mom, my normal everyday routine got flipped upside down in those first few months of newborn life.  Suddenly, everyday beauty rituals became obsolete and I distinctly remember asking my husband (while halfway crying) how moms ever have time to curl their hair in the morning.  Why did I ask my husband that?  As if he could ever answer the question! Sneaky, sneaky you are post-partum hormones…

Since then I have streamlined my hair and makeup routine and I have gotten rid of anything I don’t use on a daily basis.  Friends, this is huge coming from a MAKEUP ARTIST.  I have so many beauty products it’s ridiculous.  But I slowly learned that if I only had what I truly needed and loved that getting ready in the morning could be enjoyable if not, delightful.

Today I want to reveal how I was able to minimize my routine but also keep what I had around me beautiful and purposeful…

DECLUTTER

There is no magical formula for streamlining your beauty items because everyone is different in how they do their makeup but I do have a few suggestions.  Adopt a one item in, one item out mindset.  Stick to the basics and keep one of each: face primer, foundation, foundation powder/setting powder, blush, bronzer, eyeshadow primer, one eyeshadow palette, one brown eyeliner, lash curler and mascara. You should also have a lip color that you love and goes with anything.

Click here to read a post on my favorite everyday lip glosses, this will give you a good idea of what colors to look for.

CLEAN

Next, clean out your makeup bag or the area where you apply your makeup.  Alcohol your eyeliners and lip liners and sharpen them before putting them back into their homes.  Clean the edges, lids and mirrors of compacts and palettes with a baby wipe.  Items should be easy to spot and not look cluttered as a whole.  I adore these darling glass + gold trays from Target. They allow your makeup items to lay flat while making them easy to spot. Bonus points: these trays are on sale and would makeup a fabulous Christmas gift for someone!

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REFRESH

Next, clean and organize the top of your makeup vanity.  I prefer to have close to nothing on top of the table I do my makeup on.  It’s so incredibly refreshing to wake up and start your day with a blank slate.  While searching for makeup vanity inspiration I found an underlying component in all of the pictures that I loved, fresh flowers.  

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Fresh flowers make any bathroom look expensive, no matter how small or big your room is.  It’s one of the cheapest things you can do to make your space look elegant but also clean and inviting.

SANITIZE

I’ve recently been using the Honest Company Lavender Hand Sanitizing Spray and I plan to purchase a second one for my makeup bag.  I think it’s a genius idea considering that cold and flu season is upon us.  How perfect would this be to use right before you begin makeup in the morning to prevent germs from spreading?  Also, can you tell that I’m married to a nurse? 😉

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REBUILD

Last but not least, decide on a brush set that you love.  Stick to coordinating colors and create a beautiful template with it.  I adore the Bold Metals Collection from Real Techniques because I am a huge neutral lover in general.  These brushes are so beautiful and would look stunning next to your newly cleaned makeup items.

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And for the record, how adorable is their new Miracle Diamond Sponge applicator?  This is art in itself!

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If money is tight but you feel the urge to live a fabulous life, buy 1-2 brushes at a time.  Another great option is Sephora because their brushes are always in stock and you can pick between all black or all silver.  OCD freaks UNITE!  And don’t forget to add brush cleaner too.  If you keep it near your brushes in an easy-to-see spot, you’ll clean your brushes MUCH more often.  I like Sonia Kashuk’s brush cleaner because it’s gentle and smells like lavender.

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What’s weird is when I started this journey of becoming a minimalist (don’t worry, it’s transferred into every area of my life), is that it happened unintentionally.  I was an overstressed mom who felt like she hardly had time for anything.  Flash forward a year later and I truly appreciate the things that I have, each and every single item.  Getting ready is a joy and I’ve found staple products that work well and look good on me.  You’ll be surprised at how different you feel once you clean out the unwanted and welcome the new.

And for the record, it’s much easier to straighten your hair as a new mom than it is to curl it. 😉

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Troubleshooting For Brows

Life can be hard.  Brows can be hard.

I’m here to make one of the above easier for you today.

Brows can be tricky.  You might think you have it all figured out only until you step into natural light and see how dark (or how orange) they actually look. You also might think you have it all figured out only until someone says “you did your brows today.”  Or maybe you’ve tried SO hard to give yourself a “natural” arch, only to wipe it all off and throw your expensive brow pencil out the window.

Friends: I am here to help.  There should be a crisis line for problems like these but there’s not.

Call me. Or read on for common problems women have and how to fix them.

Disclaimer: It is always best to get your brows waxed by a professional that you trust before you try to work your “brow magic.”  This is important because it not only cleans up the brow but it also helps you find your natural shape if you plan on filling them in or if you want to make them look slightly fuller.


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TROUBLESHOOTING FOR BROWS PART 1: 

Crisis #1

“I don’t know what color I need!”

Answer: Taupe will always be the most “universal color” for a one-size-fits-all approach.  Start there if you’re truly undecided.

Blondes & redheads pair best with a blonde or taupe shade. Redheads: I would advise staying away from anything too warm or auburn toned.  Anyone with hair darker than sandy blonde can jump up into the brunette and chocolate shade ranges.  Look at the colors in your hair and look for a shade that is 1-2 shades lighter than your darkest color.

To make life super easy: head to your local Sephora and checkout the Anastasia Brow Wiz pencil collection. They have TEN shades so that everyone is able to achieve beautiful brows. Can I get an amen? #handpraise

Crisis #2

“I tried filling my brows in and they look too heavy and too dark.”

Answer: Start with a taupe or light brown eyeshadow and an angled eyeliner or eyebrow brush. Begin by tracing the other shape of your brows.  Remember in grade school when you would take your crayon and trace the outer shape of your picture and then color the rest on the inside? Same idea!  The reason I suggest to start with a powder is because it is very natural and very forgiving and it leaves less pigment than a pencil would.  I use eyeshadow as a brow powder all the time so don’t think that you need to buy a special color or product just for that. Once you’ve skimmed the perimeter, go back and fill in the inside.  Hold your liner brush so that the smaller end is putting upwards towards your forehead.  This is very important.  And make sure that you are brushing it outwards and upwards.

If you’re happy with the results from the powder you can stop there or if you need more “pop” you can go back with the Anastasia Brow Wiz and lightly flick small hair strokes into the brow. Tiny little flicks.  You are literally mimicking the tiny individual hairs.

Once you’ve completed the above steps, take a few steps back from your mirror and look at your brows.  Look at them in relation to the rest of your face.  Do they look a little too heavy? Take a spoolie brush and press in into your brows, touching the skin, pressing it down to diffuse the product.  This is such an important step because SO many women would be much happier with their results if they did this step.

You can buy a spoolie brush separately, or it often comes on the other end of a double-sided eyebrow brush.

 

Crisis #3

“I can’t find my natural shape!” or “I want a bigger arch!”

Answer:  We can also say a prayer of gratitude because Anastasia has heard our cries and created the ever-so-clever brow stencils!! These are amazing!!!

The set contains 5 shapes and is broken down by size of arch.  Like anything, it can take a little practice and I would advise by starting with a powder and brush first before attempting the pencil or cream.  These stencils are so helpful and you might find after repeated usage that you don’t need the stencil for everyday help.

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Ok friends, it is my hope that today’s post truly helped you and motivates you to find something that works well for you.  And I would LOVE to see the results!! Snap a selfie of yourself and use the hashtag #blushingbrows!

If you find that you still need a little more brow 911, call or text 785.393.9991 to setup a brow consultation with me.  This includes a brow wax and tutorial on how to fill in your brows while using the proper products.

Stay tuned for tomorrow to find out what brow products I recommend! 

 

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Finding Your Perfect Foundation

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Just this week, an old friend from high school sent me a message and asked me for a foundation recommendation.  She had a list of requirements and she told me that what she had tried in the past wasn’t working well.  It inspired me to write this post because I have SO many tips and tricks for finding the right foundation, no matter what your list requires!

I’m going to break it down for you in simple steps and I’m also going to list a few of my all-time favorites for people who just want a general recommendation.

1.) Decide if you want a light, medium or full coverage formula.  

Light coverage will still show freckles and skin discoloration, medium is a good in-between if you want some coverage but don’t want a heavy finish, and full coverage gives a very opaque coverage.  Think Adele.

Also, do you want a dewy (glowy) finish or a matte (no shine) finish?

Dewy on the left, skin has an overall glow.  Matte on the right, skin almost appears to be powdered.  BlakeSM

2.) Decide if you want a powder, liquid or cream.

As mentioned from tip #1, these 3 textures will often yield the above results.  Powder is light coverage, liquid is medium, and cream is full.  For the record, I will 9.5/10 always recommend a liquid finish.  It’s the most blendable and very few people over the age of 17 can pull off powder (skin has to be nearly perfect for it to sit well by itself on the skin.)  If you have acne or other skin texture issues powder never has and never will look good on top it.

3.) Go to Sephora and find someone to help you.  

This tip will save you 38293 million different ways.  I know some people hate spending $ on “expensive makeup” but you will spend just as much when you buy 2-3 wrong shade foundations at Target or Walgreens.  Tell a Sephora team member that your looking for a new foundation and that you need XYZ from tips #1&2.  And don’t be afraid to be honest with them. Tell them what you’ve tried in the past and why it didn’t work.

4.) Ask for an application of the foundation.

This is why I love Sephora, they will walk you through everything step-by-step.  They will color match you for the right foundation shade, show you what primer and what brush to use and they will apply it in store so that you can see how it looks and feels. This is huge guys, this takes out sooo much of your guessing work.

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5.) Decide if you’re ready to purchase or ask for a sample.

If you feel unsure of how well you like the new foundation, ever-so-politely ask for a sample of it.  This will really give you a good idea of how well it stays and pushes you closer to a yes or a no.  But also keep in mind that if you don’t have the brush and primer that they originally used on you, the end-result could be much different.

Following the above steps should help you decipher not only what you need but how you want your makeup to look.  When you feel confident about yourself, it’s makes you feel more presentable to the world.  Polished and professional – that’s my kinda gal! 😉 

Top Picks For Foundation:

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Question and Answer Video Session

Let’s talk shop, shall we?

I am answering your beauty & skincare questions today & I broke it down to 3 videos because I LOVE talking about skincare and makeup!

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Liquid Foundation Tutorial

Hey Guys!

In the video below I show how to apply liquid foundation of which you can use ANY brand of liquid foundation with this technique.  I also explain how to add a quick + natural contour to your everyday routine.

Enjoy!

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beautifully BLUSHed: Miss Leah

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With as many a bride that sits in my makeup chair I have an equal if not, exponentially greater amount of bridesmaids that sit in it before and after them.  Every girl needs her “gals” and I have the greatest time meeting and learning about the wedding parties I’ve had the pleasure to primp and polish.  If it’s hard to tell, I am as girly as they come so having the chance to have “girl talk” and “play with makeup” is my dream job.  Actually, is that a real job?? Lucky me.

I love how there’s a million pictures and posts on social media of bridal makeup but sadly there’s hardly ever a focus on bridesmaid makeup, which I think, is just as fun.  Bridesmaids always want to look beautiful, but they also want to look a little more enticing on their friend’s wedding day too.

Enter Miss Leah.

Oh cute and adorable and Leah.  She’s the classic case beautiful bubbly blonde.  And when she came in for this “Bridesmaid Makeup Inspired” look, she had been dating her boyfriend for over 6 years.  She had had her fair share of bridesmaid duties…

Until that week.

He proposed!

So now that I’ve had a chance to doll her up as a bridesmaid, I’ll get to do it again as a bride!! And easy for me, she’s going to look GORGEOUS no matter what she plans on wearing for her big day.  Let’s take a look at a picture that inspired this look, one that I found on Instagram and loved because hardly ever do I use gray eyeshadow.  And I thought this look was so beautiful and the fact that the artist used some type of cream or glossed eyeshadow gives it such a fresh + modern twist on bridesmaid makeup.

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We started with my absolute favorite eyeshadow primer, the Benefit Stay Don’t Stray.  It’s a game changer. I’ve used almost every eye primer that Sephora carries and then some and nothing holds the product and produces pigment like this little dove does.  Go get it girls!!

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$26 Available at Sephora or Ulta

I decided to play with a cream eyeshadow base and mixed a few shades together to achieve a look similar to the one on Leah.  I mixed a little bit of the Maybelline “Vintage Plum” on my hand and of Elf Cosmetics “Ain’t That Sweet” cream shadow.  Here are the colors below…

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I ended up mixing the Vintage Plum shade with the shimmery Elf cream so that it would give off more of a glow on camera.  You want to be sure that when you’re using cream eyeshadow that you’re applying it with a cream shadow brush.  Nothing will make your job harder, if not impossible, if you’re not using one.  Here’s my favorite…

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Pro Cream Shadow Brush #28  ::  $20 Available at Sephora

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So I applied the creams from the base of her lash line up into a little bit above her crease.  You only have so much drying time with cream shadows so you need to apply it quickly.  Some women prefer wear cream eyeshadow because unlike powder, it doesn’t fall on your cheek below and there is no messy clean up.  Creams also have a greater staying power and they produce greater pigment as well.

Once the cream dries, you can set it with a translucent powder to prevent creasing and caking on the lid.  Once you do that, take a matte gray eyeshadow with a round crease brush and apply it into the crease of your eye.  This creates a little more depth and dimension and looks great on camera.  Make sure you fully blend that powder on top of your cream, otherwise it will look harsh and unblended.

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If you fancy, you can add a highlighter shade into the brow bone and under your arch for extra glow and shape to the eye.  Next is the fun part, the eyeliner.  You can go back and use the vintage plum shade as a liner with a small angled brush or you could use a black or chocolate shade…plum and taupe would be equally pretty as well.

Again with 38293 options, use the same shade liner on the bottom or use the opposite.  If you did the vintage plum shade on top, use a taupe liner on bottom.  If you did black on top, use vintage plum on the bottom.  This is the only time I love math because the number of options are endless.

As always, set your liners with a similar shaded powder to prevent creasing and increase longevity.

Lastly, we ended with a peachy cream blush and matching lip color.  The overall look was dewy and moisturized so I kept that up with a very “glossy gloss” on the lips.

Leah4What do you think of Leah’s final look? Are you eager to try a cream blush for the first time? Sound off in the comments below!

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Brush Care 101 :: How to Make Your Tools Last

If there’s ever a topic that comes up more often than smokey eyes in my chair, it’s how to care for your makeup brushes.  Whether you’re spending $5 or $45 dollars on a brush, it is extremely important to take care of it like a newborn child.  Ok maybe not that gentle but, somewhere along those lines.  Bottom line – the better you care for something, the longer it lasts. 

Here is a tip to make sure your brushes are getting cleaned every week which can be an easily forgotten chore…

Wash your brushes every Sunday for the week ahead and then lay them out to dry before Monday morning.   This way, you know every week they are getting cleaned and you don’t have to remember the last time you washed them, whether it was last Tuesday or the Wednesday before that.

For all of my time sensitive friends who are strapped during the week and month to keep clean brushes – clean your foundation brush 2-3x a week and keep a bottle of brush spray cleaner with tissues at your makeup station.  You can either hand wash your foundation brush with mild soap and water, or you can clean it with a daily brush cleaner and tissue.  You can then wash all your other brushes you are using like eyeshadow brushes and blush brushes with just the cleaner and tissue.  Because these types of brushes aren’t usually used with a liquid/cream product it’s easier to get away with just using the spray. Simply saturate the tissue with a moderate amount of cleaner and swirl your brush into the tissue until no more product comes out.  Squeaky clean.

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Clever tip – you can even use Isopropyl Alcohol in a clean spray bottle if that’s easier for you but do not use it very often on your liquid brushes, it’s too harsh.

If you are doing your deep wash Sunday cleaning, you will point the brush under warm running water and pump a drop of mild (preferably natural) soap into your opposite hand.  Do not use antibacterial soap, it is too harsh and strips the brush of it’s softness.  Swirl the brush into the soap and create a large lather.  I add a little water to the soap while I’m doing this and continually swirl the brush in my hand. Depending on how dirty the brush is, I do this a few times and then rinse the brush as much as possible with clean water.  At any point that you are washing brushes, do not dip the brush upside down and do not let water run into the ferrule where the adhesive sits, this will wear the brush down very quickly and the hair will begin to fall out.

Clever tip #2 – you can also occasionally wash your brushes with your hair conditioner after you’ve cleaned them.  This makes the brushes superbly soft and is a must-do if you’re using a dry hair brush similar to the ones bareMinerals makes.  Just be sure to rinse it well and don’t use too much conditioner.  If you do it can prevent you from picking up any product once you’re ready to use it.

I then lay all of my brush out to dry on a flat surface on top of a clean towel.


As I’ve mentioned before in my “Top 3 Brushes That Will Save Your Life”  post, the preferred brush spray cleaners that I use are from Sephora brand and Sonia Kashiuk.  Below is the link to to both brush cleaners.

life/http://www.sephora.com/daily-brush-cleaner-P208011?skuId=1069962

http://www.target.com/p/sonia-kashuk-brush-and-sponge-cleanser/-/A-13311368