Monday, April 23, 2012

Hello lovelies! 

I have been so terrible about new posts this month and I apologize! Things have been insanely busy for me work wise (thank goodness :)), and now I'm gearing up for my vacation

As I was prepping a mental list of what to take, I thought it might be fun to share with you my vacation makeup must haves, and then show a few ideas on how to use them. 

Now I like to travel light when it comes to makeup, especially when I'm going to a beach. I know I'll be lying on the warm sandy beaches for most of my days and heading out to dinner in the evenings... *Swoon* 
Considering how low key this vacation is,  I only bring the essentials. So here they are!

Obviously! I wouldn't dare let my skin see the light of that hot sun without it! Of course I'll be under the big umbrellas and wearing my big hat, but for when I venture out to the pool or ocean, I want to make sure I'm covered :) 

So important! Moisturizing is one of the best things you can do for yourself! Especially if you plan on being in the sun. In order to keep that golden tan, your body needs moisture to lock it in! 

I hate wearing a full face of foundation in hot climates and even during the warmer months in Chicago. So a lot of times I'll just spot conceal where my skin needs a little love :) 

Red or Coral Lipstick: 
Sounds kinda silly, but it's so versatile! I can use a little on my cheeks for a soft cream blush, or throw it on my lips for dressed up evening :) Lipstick is the EASIEST way to dress up your look without a lot of work :)

Waterproof Mascara: 
Mascara is one of my favorite products! So with all the heat and water, I need to keep a waterproof one in my bag. 

I usually always have a highlighter of some sort. Currently I've been obsessed with Smashbox's Highlighter Stick! It's so portable and can be used anywhere. 

Brown Eyeliner:
I have brown because it's less harsh than a black liner. It's a nice warm tone that will work wonders for enhancing my eyes-AND-I can use it to slightly fill my brows :) 

Set Powder:
To reduce shine and set your makeup!
These few products are the perfect standbys to achieve a beachy, flawless look. Here's how I use them... 

Daytime Venture:
If for some reason I don't decide to lay on the beach all day with sunscreen and shades only... I may put in some effort to put on a fresh face for some sightseeing or shopping.
product photos, links, and descriptions to follow

To start off: This is my beach face. No makeup.

To get the ball rolling, I apply a moisturizer with SPF all over my face.
Next, I conceal wherever needs some help... i.e.; dark under eye circles, bits of redness around the nose, forehead, and chin.

I used NARS vanilla/honey concealer palette for this. I used the "honey", or the more pink one to conceal under the eyes. This pinky tone cuts any blues/purple tones. 
I applied it with a pointed concealer brush. It's just a little more precise.

I then blended the product with my fingertips.  

Don't forget your eyelids! This dramatically brightens the eyes!

 Following the same routine as under my eyes, I used the 'Vanilla' shade (the more yellow tone) of concealer to cover any redness on my nose, forehead and chin. 

 And this is me with a spot concealed face! Just that tiny bit of concealer goes a long way. 

Now that I've created a neutralized palette, it's time to add some color! I take my red lipstick (or coral lipstick, or pink lipstick, etc...) and very lightly tap a few dots on the apples of my cheeks. 

Then I gently buff it out with my fingertips. 

I could stop here! But let's keep going. 

Take the lipstick and gently dab some color on your lips. This way they have a little bit of brightness. 

Set everything with a light dusting of powder. This will matte out our look in this humid climate!

I took my brightening stick and placed it on the inner corners of my eyes to help open and brighten them up, as well as highlighted my brow bone. This looks gorgeous in the sunlight!

I also took the liberty of placing a little on my cheekbones. You can put this stuff anywhere you want the light to hit and reflect :) 

Curl your lashes! Even if you look like me with a half opened eye!

Apply the waterproof mascara.

And that's it! 
So easy! But I look fresh faced, like  I just rolled outta bed looking flawless! --that'd be awesome by the way :) 

Evening out: 
One thing you should know about me, I love eating! So evenings are always spent dining in a new restaurant while on vacation. Here is how I might pull together an evening look in the heat.  

Going from the day look above, here's a quick way to bring it into the evening light....

First and easiest thing to do: Apply that same lipstick on your lips as you used on your cheeks. 

I had red on hand, so that's what I used. Depending on the night out, I may have used something a little more tropical and fun! (I have a fabulous coral and orange:)) I will have at least two different shades with me on vacay :) 

Hit those lashes with a little more mascara! This time, hit the bottoms as well. 

 Take that brown liner and softly line the upper and lower lash lines. 
This adds some definition and drama. 

This could be it. I could be done here. BUT I'm a little obsessed with brows and feel naked without them when I have all this other makeup on! 

so.... Take that same brown eyeliner and very softly fill your brows. 

what a difference huh?!

Aaaaannnddd now we're done :)

So there are two super quick and easy makeup looks you can do on your next vacation, or any day you're running late! With my schedule, I pretty much do the daytime face everyday :) 5 minutes is all you need! 

Here's what I used so you can see how portable these products are. They hardly take up any room in my bag! The Moisturizer is actually a sample from Mario Badescu, which is perfect for a trip! 


My hands!
Shu eumera Eyelash curler
Stila Brushes #24 and #33

Hope you enjoyed this! Practice your 5 minute face at home. You'd be surprised to see how few products it takes to get that flawless face :)

xoxo Jen

Monday, April 2, 2012

Same Girl, Different Day

So you'll never guess what happened....

I was on set of a test shoot with the wildly talented, McLaren Soriano, working on our beautiful model Brittney Miles (Factor). Brittney was in Chicago for a month from Texas so she could update her book and take some classes. 

I was working on her and talking to McLaren who informed me that he was renting a space in the city for future shoots. The conversation led to a common friend and crazy talented photographer, RB Del Rosario. 

ME: "What a small world! RB and I have worked together so many times! I'm actually working with him tomorrow morning!"
Brittney: "Me too!"

Now here's what, for a makeup artist we are always looking for new faces to work on for diversity in our book. Especially when you are testing, which is usually FREE work! So naturally I was a little saddened by the news but also kind of excited to see how I could make her look different. 

For comparison, I thought I'd sample a few photos from each shoot. Both days were absolute fun and turned out fabulous! Brittney was a doll and pure joy to work with! Both days of shooting were so drastically different and had amazing teams of people on board! 

Brittney Miles
Jen Brown

Lys Mae
Adriana Mendiola
Jen Brown

For the sake of Comparison...

Brittney's shoot with McLaren was a softer look. It started out very natural and later got bumped up with an electric blue for a little bit of an edge. I still followed her natural features, so lips and cheeks were softly accented. I also kept her foundation light. Her hair was either loosely tied back, or left down to softly frame her face.

For our shoot with RB, he loves to play with more editorial styles... so, lots of colored lights, interesting settings and dramatic styling. For her eyes, I used very dark sparkly blue and black shadows as well as a smokey black liner. It extended pretty far out, making her eyes appear larger. They were topped with some dramatic strip lashes of course :)
Her lips were drawn in with more of a pouty look -- the first with a bright red, and the second with a dark plum lip color. Her foundation was still light, but her contours were extreme! Her hair was teased at the top for a bit of height but slicked back taught to get that fierce look and to focus on her face. 

While the hair and makeup did change much of the way Brittney looked, both photographers had such a different way of directing, lighting and shooting that made these shots so different! 

I'm so thrilled that I was able to walk away with so many images from each shoot! It was a very fun challenge to alter Brittney's features and to see just how far I could go without it looking unnatural. 

So THANK YOU to both teams! I think we all did a fantastic job. 

xoxo Jen