My Blog List

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

My makeup Idols!

As time goes on and I get more and more into the makeup industry, I keep coming across new makeup artists and beauty gurus. Some I love, some I could take or leave, and there are just a handful I always come back to and rely on for good makeup, good tutorials, good advice...

Most of them are actually established makeup artists who have been working in the industry for years and I feel that, as a fan, I'm lucky that these people have decided to make YouTube channels for my benefit (obviously not just my benefit but we all have our own reasons for watching their videos - sometimes it's just for pleasure but it's also to learn something for a lot of people).

So here are my favourites, in no particular order!

These two girls, Sam and Nic, are sisters and have been working in the makeup industry for a good 15 years each and have worked in all aspects of it from editorial shoots to runway shows. They make full makeup tutorials from start to finish (which is my preferred way!), whilst being totally down to earth, funny, informative and they just come across as all-round lovely girls. In saying that, you can tell that they don't suffer fools either - they don't need to endorse products for financial gain, they're completely honest about what they like and don't like. Sam has brought out her own range of makeup brushes with Real Techniques, they both are makeup artists for Avon and as well as their own channel they make videos for Avon, Real Techniques and the Daily Mail website - phew! These girls will only go from strength to strength, and they deserve all they get!

Tanya Burr is the "sister-in-law" of Sam and Nic - she goes out with their brother so it's not official but it might as well be! She was introduced to the makeup industry by the girls and went down a similar route to them - making YouTube tutorials. After working on makeup counters and freelance, YouTube is now the main focus point of her career and she puts a lot of time and effort into it. She also has an amazing natural talent for applying makeup and her tutorials are a pleasure to watch. You can tell that she's a real girl's girl and she really enjoys what she does. She has now branched into the world of fashion a little more and manages to get backstage access to amazing runway shows and big events like London Fashion Week. She's definitely one to watch!

I don't even know where to begin with Lisa, she has been in the industry for what I'm guessing is nigh on 20 years and has worked with publications such as Glamour and Elle Magazines to brands such as Chanel and Pantene, and TV shows like 10 Years Younger! She does editorial shoots, advertisements, runway shows and lots more, and has worked on celebrities such as Cheryl Cole, Nicole Richie and Clemence Poesy to name a few. The thing I really like about Lisa is her passion for makeup - she loves all aspects of it and loves to find  and collect vintage makeup pieces. She loves the history of it and has made a series of videos about it. She throws little bits of educational or interesting info into her videos, which I just love! She comes across as being a bit posh (not in a bad way, in a nice way!) but she is so, so lovely and will not hear a bad word said against anyone. She believes that all women have beauty and should love themselves, and in this day and age, we could all do with taking her advice!

Wayne is another one who's been working in the industry for years and you can tell he has much love for makeup! His videos focus more on useful tips and tricks and reviews but occasionally he will show how to do an eye-makeup look or a complete look on his friends (poor Mandy!). He emphasises that he will always give an honest review or opinion and a favourable review cannot be bought, which as a viewer I am grateful for. He doesn't believe in rules of makeup, he thinks we should all do what works best for the individual and try different things to make us look our best. His videos sometimes have a humorous undertone and some of them are downright hilarious! He touches on serious issues too though, such as lies in the makeup industry and more recently, bullying of beauty gurus on YouTube. If you take the very short time it takes to watch most of his videos, you could learn a thing or two!

Again, Kandee has worked in the industry for years and has also raised 4 children while doing so, which is a challenge in itself! She has worked hard to get where she is and is in demand as a makeup artist in LA and Hollywood. Her videos are a mixture of makeup tutorials, how-tos, homemade remedies and DIY jewellery, fashion and makeup tools! She's a slightly crazy lady, some of her videos are so funny to watch! My absolute favourite videos of her's have to be the character makeup tutorials - she's done Edward Scissorhands, Princess Jasmine, Captain Jack Sparrow and Cleopatra, amongst many others. She gets so into character and doesn't care if the look isn't always a pretty one. She's one of the originals on YouTube and will be around for a long time to come!

There are a few more gurus I love to watch but are slightly newer to me, so I'll give them a mention here:
These are all Irish makeup artists with amazing skills and because I live in the UK now, I love to watch them - not just because of their skills but because they remind me of home! I know I'm biased but the Irish girls are very talented and worth checking out!

Eman is a Canadian makeup artist who works for Makeup Forever and she's probably one of the most popular gurus to come out of Canada! She's a beautiful girl and I love her tutorials as she usually does looks that appeal to my own personal taste.

Sam is English-American (she was born in England and moved to the US as a teenager). She is actually a hair stylist and isn't trained as a makeup artist but she has a good natural flair for makeup and she's so ditzy and funny in her videos; you can't help but like her!

I hope you enjoyed reading this post, let me know who your favourite gurus and makeup artists are!

Thanks for reading!


Thursday, 16 February 2012

Makeup Tips for the Ordinary Girl! Final Part!

So I'm finally getting round to finishing up this series, and I've a few goodies to go out with! This part is going back to makeup mistakes and disasters, things that either make me cringe or ruin my night! Let's get on with it!

Black Eyeliner on lower lashline/waterline only - This is literally when black eyeliner is only applied to the lower lash or waterline, usually quite heavily and the rest of the face may be kept quite bare or blank, which makes it worse.
I know it doesn't look so bad in this picture but I couldn't find a really bad one!

How To Correct
The problem with this is, if you only put something on the bottom lashline and nothing on the top, it just drags the eye down. It looks ok close up in the mirror when you're doing your makeup, but from a bit more of a distance, it doesn't look quite right. The scary Marys on the Jeremy Kyle Show take it to the extreme but loads of us are guilty of it (me included)! So the obvious thing to do is to balance it by putting something on the upper lashline! This can be adding a thin or thick line of gel or pencil eyeliner along the upper lashline, or adding pencil and smudging it in, or even adding a darker-coloured eye shadow over the lashline and blending it. Or, if you're keeping your makeup look very minimal, tightline (this is adding eyeliner, be it pencil or gel, to your upper water line which is underneath your upper lashes); it's so subtle but make such a difference - I do it no matter what makeup look I'm doing. The point of makeup is enhancing your features, so we don't want them to be pulled down, we want them to be lifted up!

Overdrawn Lipliner - Again, this is exactly what it says it is, lipliner drawn too far over the natural lipline to the point that it just looks ridick - we all know one celeb guilty of this, not naming names ;)
Did anyone guess who I was talking about?!

How To Correct
Easy - just don't overdraw your lipliner! In saying that, I realise that there are times when overdrawing the lips is necessary, and if done very subtly it can look good. If you have thin lips, lightly lining your lips slightly outside the natural lipline can make a big difference without being noticeable, but there are other tricks you can use too. Lipgloss is an obvious one, the shine just adds fullness to the lips instantly and is a no-brainer really. Light, neutral lipstick colours will add a certain amount of fullness to the lips while darker, matte colours will diminish them. Adding a shimmery or pearly highlighter to the cupid's bow and in the centre of the bottom lip will help plump them up - the highlighter can just be a light-coloured eyeshadow that you'd normally use on the brow bone. Another nifty trick is to begin lining the lips at the outer corners rather than the centre of the lip - don't ask me why this works, all I know is, it does! So with these tips you can trick people into thinking you have bigger lips without looking like a clown!

Makeup melting away/down face - This is similar to the shiny/oiliness problem, but is not just limited to the skin. Eye-makeup can also fall victim to this, and it can be hard to fix once it starts.

How To Correct
The key to this issue is prevention really. It tends to happen when we experience very hot, humid weather or if we're in a place that isn't very well ventilated and is full of people and bright lights, such as a nightclub. We've talked about the skin problem before, but what about your eye makeup? How do you prevent your eyeliner from ending up on your cheek?! Again, you're going to have to stock up and rely on good basic products. Waterproof makeup is a good choice, and Makeup Forever is a good place to start as it does an excellent range of water-resistant products. I would say to avoid using any creamy products, such as cream eyeshadows and cream blusher or bronzer - stick with your powders if you can. It is possible to get products for the eyes that are creamy but set matte, such as MAC Paint Pots, and they are also a good base for eyeshadows to stick to. Lots of brands do eyeshadow primers; Urban Decay Primer Potion is probably the most well-known at the minute, and they are a must for helping to deal with this problem. Apply them all around the eyes, not just on the eyelid, and don't apply too much. One eyeliner I can't recommend enough is Avon Supershock Gel Eyeliner - it has the consistency and staying power of a potted gel eyeliner but is in a pencil form, and it literally doesn't budge. If you can't get your hands on it, use a potted gel eyeliner instead - they are pretty much guaranteed to last better than a kohl pencil. Liquid eyeliner is also a good option as it is usually quite inky and can even be hard to remove when taking your makeup off. As for the lips, using a good lipliner all over the lips as your base colour is a sure-fire way to keep them looking good, and all you'll have to to is top up with gloss, balm or lipstick. Using a makeup setting spray will also help your makeup last and as I said before, carry oil-absorbing paper sheets in your bag to help nip the problem in the bud!

So that's about it for my makeup tips for the ordinary girl, I hope anyone reading this can have a laugh, relate to it and maybe learn a thing or two! If you want to share your experiences of makeup disasters and how you fixed them, please share in the comments section below!

Thanks for reading!


Monday, 13 February 2012

Be back soon!

This is just a very quick post to say that I shall grace you with my presence shortly! I've just been home in Ireland for a week and now I'm back in the UK and I'm flat out moving house/city, so I'm a busy bee! I will finish up my "Makeup Tips for the Ordinary Girl" series in the next few days, I just need to find the time to sit down and do it! See you soon!


Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Makeup Tips for the Ordinary Girl - Part 2!

The first part of this series focused on makeup mistakes that were very common and easily preventable, but sometimes we have to deal with problems that aren't so easily solved - problems we may have with our skin, pigmentation, things like that. So for the second part, I'll cover some of the more common problems we come across and what we can do to try and deal with them. So here goes!

Shiny face - This pretty much only happens with oily skin but can also occur or be made worse by wearing the wrong type of foundation and other base products.

How to Correct
I've talked before about my skin (it's very oily and blemish-prone) so this is something I personally deal with on a daily basis, and I know lots of people do. I've tried lots of things over the years and nowadays, I pretty much have it under control. Factors out of our control, like humid weather, can aggravate it, but sometimes the products we use on our skin can make it worse so choosing the right products is so important. Basically, if you have oily skin, you should never use anything that has oil in it - that goes for moisturisers, primers, foundations and concealers (check the ingredients of everything!). I never wear moisturiser when I wear makeup, I simply don't need it. So cut down on the amount of different products you apply to your skin for a start. Then, you may find an anti-shine or mattifying primer useful; I'm currently using Benefit Pore-fessional and I'm liking it. Next, use a matte or even a semi-matte foundation; there are so many different ones available and some are brilliant. Then, it is essential to set your foundation with a powder, just make sure it is matte too and doesn't contain any light reflecting particles. I find it very useful to carry blotting paper sheets with me in my handbag; use them to blot away any oiliness rather than applying more powder on top - the oil your skin produces will eventually break down the products on your skin if you don't stop it in its tracks! I also wouldn't recommend using cream blushers or any blusher, bronzer or even highlighter with shimmer in it (you can get matte highlighters, with difficulty!). You may also find a makeup-setting spray such as Urban Decay De-slick useful to keep your makeup shine-free throughout the day.

Dark Circles/Under-eye Bags - Can be inherited or can be caused by lack of sleep and other stressful circumstances in our lives.

How to Correct
Again, this is something I deal with on a day to day basis, and my dark circles are inherited (I know, I'm so lucky!). The obvious solution to this is to use colour correctors and concealers to hide them, but it's not always that simple when it comes to under-eye bags as it's not just a case of them just being darker than your skintone; the skin is may be sagging or puffy. The last thing you want to do with bags is highlight them, whereas with dark circles, applying highlighter such as Yves Saint Laurent Touche Eclat can reflect light away and give a concealing effect (although it's not great for photography because of this). I personally don't feel qualified enough to give advice on the causes of under-eye bags, so I would highly recommend anyone to watch this video by Lisa Eldridge (who is an amazing makeup artist!) in which she talks about it in some detail. As for dark circles, one of the best things you can do is use an orange or salmon-coloured corrector on the area (orange is opposite blue on the colour wheel and therefore cancels it out; you may notice that your dark circles have blue or purple undertones) and use a good concealer over this. Smashbox, Eve Pearl and Bobbi brown all have good salmon-based concealers.

Makeup settling into fine lines - This can be anything from concealer and eye products settling into the fine lines around the eyes to foundation settling into laughter lines.

How to Correct
Thankfully this isn't a problem I have to deal with myself just yet (thanks oily skin!) but as we get older, it increasingly becomes a problem; in saying that, even teenagers may suffer from fine lines around the eyes. The way to deal with this is again, concentrate on getting the base products right. There are loads of moisturisers, primers, foundations and even concealers that claim to combat this problem and you may find that some of them will work for you, but I think the key to it is to prevent it where possible. From about mid-20s onwards, we should all have a good morning and night routine that we stick to, and this is definitely the time to start using an eye cream. Eye creams are important and moisturiser is not really suitable to use in the eye area as they are usually too heavy for the thin skin here. One way to combat fine lines if you're already suffering from them is to use a primer in the area and then use very little product on top - so for laughter lines, the less foundation you have in the area, the less that will crease into the laughter lines and the less obvious it will be. Silicone-based primers tend to fill in fine lines and pores so they are a good option and are widely available. In the eye area, apply whatever eye-makeup base you use over your fine lines and crow's feet and apply concealer over, but not too much! Prevention and disguise are really your best bet here.

I know myself how irritating these issues can be but what I will say is, try different things and figure out what works best for you, don't let it ruin your day because we all are our own worst enemy and nobody really notices the flaws we scrutinize ourselves for, and definitely, definitely draw attention to your best features because you can guarantee that people will focus on them!

I'll be back soon to wrap up my makeup mistakes and tips!

Thanks for reading,