I am beginning this blog mainly because I work in the beauty industry and I am passionate about the process of makeup application, makeup products in general, and the mind-blowing creativity that makeup artists use on a daily basis. I work with many different products and brands, so I like to review products. However, I have always believed that the ability to apply a product well is far more valuable than the amount of money that you spend on products. So whether you are a MAC enthusiast, a Maybelline girl, an Urban Decay Diva, or a Obsessive Compulsive Consmetics collector, I am all for it! Have fun reading!
One of the many things that I love about working with makeup is the way it makes me feel- When someone feels refreshed and revitalized by something as small as a new color of lipstick, it can turn the day around. When I apply makeup in the morning it kind of forecasts the way I am feeling that day- it reflects the mood I am in. (When I contour Im usually feeling organized, when Im in a bad mood I do smoky eyes, etc) Which leads me to my point- don’t be afraid to try something new! Bright colors (particularly on the cheeks and eyes) can be a fantastic way to add personality to your look, a pep in your step, and perhaps a new found love for an unexpected color. Forecast a bright day and suprise yourself with something new- a different shade of blush (in a brighter pink or orange hue) can be an easy way to start out. Dont be afraid of new colors. Theres nothin like experimentin’!
Contouring! (one of my favorite things)
If you buy a beautiful summer dress, when winter begins, do you just ditch it? Nope. You add layers so that you can make it work during the winter seasons. There is an equivalent regarding makeup products: Over the summer, women will come into makeup stores to buy foundations that match their skin tones while they have their summer glow- and in just a few months, the foundation will be the wrong color. So, what do you do with your summer foundation and winter foundation? Contour! It is easy, flatters the shape of your face, and best of all- it’s economical. (if you are a bit of a beauty product addict like me, and have products lying around that arent put to use)
Above, I added some helpful charts that show where to apply lighter foundation and darker foundation. For an easy contour, apply the lighter foundation in the shape of a T on the forehead and down the center of the nose with a classic foundation brush (example: pro foundation brush number 47 by Sephora). Then, apply a layer of light foundation on the center of the chin, as well as in a c shape starting at your temple all the way around to right above the apples of your cheeks.
With the darker foundation, apply in the shape of a “3” starting at the top of your forehead, lining the hollows of your cheeks and right underneath your neck. To make the nose appear thinner, apply the deeper shade of foundation on the sides of the nose in parallel lines. (This is a basic contour, there are many different ways to approach contouring the face and nose in order to get the shape that you prefer).
Then, with a dense kabuki brush blend the colors together. It will leave you with a more accentuated face shape!
As Emily Browning, Amber Heard, and Eva Mendes show, you can increase the contour with an illuminator to bring out the parts of the face you would like to draw attention to, and a matte bronzer to the areas you would like to hollow out. Gorgeous!
Today I decided to do a little beauty tribute to the women that inspire me because they are creative, exquisite, and overflow with style and class despite the challenges their careers have presented them with. (they are listed in no particular order).
Mainly, they are fearless.
Emily Browning is pictured first- she has her own sense of style, and only chooses to take on roles that challenge particular stereotypes. For instance, she was offered the role of Bella Swan for the Twilight series- but she wasnt really feelin it. Even though it would have made her exponentially more wealthy and famous, she turned it down because she did not like the character she was cast to be. BOSS.
Gwen Stefani- need I say more?
Misty Copeland- This woman is everything. She is the first African American soloist for the American Ballet Theatre, started dancing when she was 13, and even though she does not have the typical body type of the Balanchine dancer, she is so talented and positive that ABT couldnt even stop her.
Etta James- perfection. Talent, strength, and beauty. I am overwhelmed just thinking about how many challenges she had to face. But her challenges just made her stronger and fueled even more artistry and passion.
Today, I just want to endorse a few products for eyes that have worked out really well for me. I think they are all worth a try, mainly because I like to play around with many different looks and colors- the Makeup Forever Flash Palette allows for pretty much any look, and has so much product! I love to mix colors- with the basic color wheel, anything is possible. (dont limit the palettes use to just eyes! it can be used for anything and is great for stage makeup!)
The Stila Waterproof Eyeliner Pen and YSL Waterproof pencil are the only two eyeliners that will actually stay on my eyes without smudging. They both have great pigmentation, are easily controlled, and go on smooth. Same with Voluminous by L’Oreal. If you wiggle the brush at the base of the lashes and then brush upwards towards the end of the lashes it makes your eyelashes less prone to breakage.
Once you go Urban Decay Eye Primer, you dont go back. Unless you are planning on swimming in olive oil, its not going crease your makeup.
..some brief examples!
One of my main frustrations regarding makeup artistry is the request to apply a “smokey eye”. The term itself is very subjective- for some, the “smokey eye” could simply mean that there is more eye makeup applied than an individual is used to wearing. For others, it means that your eyes are completely covered with black eye shadow. There is no right way to do anything- its simply preference.
I think the sexiest smokey eye look is one that adds dimension/depth to the eyes.
In order to create the look, you need to use more than just one color.
Smokey Eye #1 uses three colors to make the eyes appear larger- the white shadow is used in the center of the eyelid and blended, as well as on the inner corners of the eye. A silvery-grey is applied from the inner corner to halfway through the lid. Then, the darkest shade is used on the outer corner, and blended throughout the crease of the eyes, right underneath the brow bone. A dark liner is applied on the top and bottom lashlines. To finish, the darkest shade of shadow is blended slightly underneath the bottom liner on the outer corners of the eyes, and mascara is applied on the lashes. The silvery-grey is blended on the bottom lid right underneath the center of the eye, and the lightest is blended right underneath the tear duct.
smokey eye #2 is Jessica Alba- her makeup artist used lighter colors and blended darker colors on the outer corners. As you can see, it is still considered a smokey eye without looking too heavy.
Smokey Eye #3 is exquisite, but a challenge to achieve without looking gaunt. In order to achieve the look use matte shadows and make sure that you feel comfortable outlining the entire eye with liner- with some eye shapes, lining the entire eye with a dark color can make them appear smaller. It appears that only two shadow colors were used in the process (both a deep grey and a black). Black was blended on the lid and underneath the eyes, and grey was blended on the crease and towards the brow bone. The look almost mimics the look of kohl eyeliner.
Regardless of how you like to do smokey eyes, make sure you start with a primer and blend blend blend! If you are looking for somewhere to start, the Too Faced “Smokey Eye Palette” has gorgeous hues for all skin tones and eye colors. It also has little notecards about how to achieve different looks with the shadows provided.
The Look Good…Feel Better program is truly incredible- check out their mission statement- if you are a makeup professional or just interested in getting involved, volunteer!
Thanks to Zooey for telling me about this organization!
CHAMELEON: Leighton Meester
Just in case I haven’t yet convinced you of the impact that hair and makeup can have on your look, take a peek at the images of Leighton Meester above. It’s proof that style can be transformed with one swipe of lipstick or dramatic eyes! I love that Leighton isn’t afraid to experiment with different looks: from a bold lip teamed with a coiffed mane to heavily lined eyes and bed hair, she’s a shining example of how to have fun with beauty!
Smoky Blue-and-Pink Wing: MAC Fuchsia and Frozen White pigments
This is a look that should be multi-faceted and contoured. If you have mono-lids, just draw in the crease along your socket line, above the lid crease. This takes a bit of practice to get even but it looks great!
Step 1: Use a flat brush to pack a black base like MAC Paint Pot in Blackground or elf Duo Cream Shadow in Licorice over the entire lid. At the outer corner, draw in a wing following the angle of the lower lash line. For the Dummies’ Guide version to winged liner, click here.
Step 2: Pack a metallic fuchsia pink to the outer halves of the black base. You can use MAC Fuchsia pigment.
Step 3: The next step requires a specific type of shadow; translucent white with a blue duochrome sheen. MAC Frozen White pigment and I Nuovi Star shadow are both very similar, but the I Nuovi is softer and less sparkly as it’s a pressed shadow.
Step 4: Use a charcoal grey like Urban Decay Gunmetal to run along the top of the wing, along your socket line, using a pencil brush. Then smoke out just slightly to prevent unevenness.
Step 5: Apply black liquid liner along the tide line (inner rim of your upper lash line) and also wing out at the outer corner, following the angle of the eyeshadow. The liner runs along half the lash line only, not all the way to the inner corners.
Nothing looks more refreshing than a break from the usual pinky-nude lipstick and nail polish, especially a sheer wash of tangerine for the spring and summer months.
See these gorgeous products for yourself! Clockwise: Tom Ford Lipstick in Wild Ginger // Revlon Lipstick in Kiss Me Coral // Laura Mercier Gloss in Bellini // Bobbi Brown Gloss in Citrus // Deborah Lippman Nail Laquer in Lara’s Theme // Essie Polish in Orange It’s Obvious // OPI in Atomic Orange.
Dioni Tabbers for Vogue India March 2011
YES YES YES
Spring has arrived and brings with it a variable of sights and sounds that gets us in the mood for adventure. What better way to embrace the festivities than to immerse yourself in the brilliant hues that are sure to give you a fresh yet seductive look. Verdant Equinox is your guide to the popular products from brands like Urban Decay, NARS and Two Faced which focus on natural and neutral shades with plenty of shimmer, and some fun bath items from Lush that will leave you looking and feeling great.
The above trio of images comes from Illamasqua’s latest collection, entitled Human Fundamentalism. The following quote that accompanies the array of bold eyeshadows, lipsticks and nail varnishes is one that I feel is a sentiment echoed by what Carny Style is all about:
Human Fundamentalism is an explosion of your alter ego. It’s becoming who you are and not who you’re told to be. Beauty isn’t conformity, but the fundamental human desire to express your inner self on the outside. To rise above mainstream limitations and exist in a world where individuality is received with celebration not derision, and breaking the mould is a sign of strength not instability. We stand for freedom of expression, embracing our glorious imperfections and showing the world we’re not ordinary but extraordinary, even if society refuses to accept it. We’re beyond conformity. Beyond control. Beyond hiding who we really are. We are not a religion, but the singular opposite. We are Illamasqua.
Get ready for a startling celebration of humanity’s connection with colour. Introducing the Human Fundamentalism collection, where blinding flashes of pigment provide a sharp contrast to neutral tones, creating a saturated palette that catapults your alter ego to new levels of self-expression. Mix contrasting textures to express your true self, spiraling from rich metallic to pale matte shades. This is nonconformity at its most fundamental. At its unpredictable best.