Sunday, September 15, 2013

Top 5

At last month's Beauty Meet Up meeting, our lovely Mel Wilson had the idea to make our theme, "Artist's Top 5 Kit Essentials." 

I thought it was a great idea! 
It's pretty fun to see what products/tools are go to, must haves for these pro, working artists! There are a lot of similarities, but some curveballs thrown in an as well :) 

Sara Jean Stevens 
Hair and Makeup Artist Chicago
*Since she was the only Hair stylist turned makeup artist of the group that night, we made her do her top 5 makeup products as well as hair products!

Eve Pearl Cream Blushes
$25 for individual 

$52 for Trio

Tarte BB Cream
Nurturing Force Blot Out Offensive
*Ah-mazing mattifier/primer for oily or normal skin types*
Boscia Blotting Linens in Lavender
$10 for 100 sheets
Maybelline Eyebrow Pencils
*Precise with a good variety of colors*

Rusk Being Sexy Hair Spray
$10 on Amazon!
Kevin Murphy Beach Resort
Teasing Comb 
(found anywhere, but here's a good one from Sally Beauty)
Enzo Milano hot iron tools
Rusk Grooming Cream
$11.50 on Amazon

Mel Wilson
Makeup and Hair Artist Chicago

Nurturing Force Blot Out Offensive

Graftobian Foundations
$18.99 ea. 
*lovely to use as lip balm as well as dry elbow and hands!*
NYX Jumbo Eye Pencil in MILK
*used as an eye primer for the purest pigment*
Dr. Bronners Castile Soap 
(for cleaning her brushes!)
$2.99-$16 depending on the amount

Kat Dejesus
Makeup and Hair Artist Chicago

Kett Foundation Palettes in Ruby and Olive (for a good range in tones)
$105 per palette
$15 per individual pan
MAC Airbrush Cleaner-- claims "it's the best!"
*I couldn't find a link to this product anywhere! So if you find it, consider yourself lucky :)*
- mattifies and fills pores


Lorac Pro Shadow Palette
(via Sephora)

Angela B. Hall
Makeup and Hair Artist Chicago

*Color correcting creams to mix with foundations*
Cream eye shadows
*No specifics were given, just a favorite medium :) *




Cristina Gomez
Makeup Artist Chicago

*Perfect for brows or stray hairs*


*Makeup Sealer*

depending on the size

Martina Sykes
Makeup and Hair Artist Chicago



$48 ea. 

Nika Vaughan
Makeup and Hair Artist Chicago

Yet again! 
Shiseido (original formula) Cream Eyeshadows

Iris Guevara
Hair and Makeup Artist Chicago


$48 ea. 
$20 or 2 for $28!

$3 ea. refill
(via Camera Ready Cosmetics)
$49 for a palette of 12

Andrea C. Samuels
Makeup and Hair Artist Chicago






Tell us what your favorite products are! I know this group would love to hear it! 


Friday, September 6, 2013

Bears Fans

Hey Everyone!

I had the opportunity to showcase some fun Chicago Bears Fan looks for the WCIU morning show, You & Me This Morning! 

You can view it here:

We wanted to show people that it's easy to show your Bears pride without going overboard (see below).

You can wear your pride in a subtle yet beautiful way.
Our 1st look is a more wearable look-- something that showcases some current trends and doesn't feel as costume-y, while the 2nd look is a little more fun, but still glamorous!

Below is some product information and a step by step process of how to achieve these looks.

Look #1
Subtle Bears Fan

For this look, we pulled a couple hot trends for Summer to wear. The first one being Colorful Cat eye liner. You can find blue eyeliner ANYWHERE nowadays. There are so many shades, it may be hard to choose! 

You also have the option of what type of liner you'd like to use--- so you can opt for a classic liquid, or you can use a gel (a little more control), or you can do what I did, and use a mixing medium with any colored eyeshadow, and create your own liner! 

Here's what I used: 

This is a loose powder that has a bit of shimmer to it. You can use it as a shadow or you can add a mixing medium like Kryolan's Cake Eye Liner Sealer. Simply drop a bit of the sealer onto the eyeshadow you're using, and take a thin brush to draw it on as liner. I chose to do this because I loved the brightness of this shadow against Summer's skin.  

If you're looking for something that takes less work, you can try... 

This liquid liner has a felt tip applicator, making the application seamless and easy! The color is beautiful and its waterproof formula makes it so you don't have to worry about it budging while you're at the hot stadium! 

Taking the eyes one step further... 
If you want to really make that blue liner POP, you can add a thin white liner at the base of your lashes. This adds a degree of separation between the colored liner and your lash line, making the colors really stand out! 

I used..
MAC Cosmetics Eye Kohl in Fascinating. 

For the lips, we worked with Makeup Forever's Aqua Rouge in Orange

I decided on the Aqua Rouge because of it's long wearing ability. It'll last through all the beer drinking, cheering and eating you'll do during your game or tailgating party! 

I chose to use this vibrant shade, but you can use a more subtle tangerine lip gloss or lipstick if you prefer. These tones are easy to find right now, as they are very much on trend!  If you're looking for a less severe lip you can try... 

This packs color in a sheer, moisturizing way. Very light, and an easy transition for those who don't sport bright colors on their lips!

For our Extreme Bears Fan... 

Look #2
Extreme Bears Look
This look was a little more bold-- definitely for that proud Bears Fan! 
Here's a breakdown of the look we did on Melissa... 

For the eyes, we started with a base of orange. I used Kryolan's Aqua Color in #32.
I LOVE the Aqua colors! They are lightweight, water activated, and the colors are amazing! you can use this product on your face, eyes, body, and hair! 
So versatile, fun and very affordable! 
To activate, you just need to spritz with water and dip your brush! It's like working with watercolors. 

I applied the bulk of the color on the lid to the crease, and then used a fluffy brush to soften the edges of the shadow. 

You can always use a standard orange eye shadow in place of this :) 

From there I actually topped the aqua color with Kryolan's Satin Powder in #571.

This is an extra step you can take-- the satin powder has that iridescence to it, so I laid it on top to add some dimension. 

For the fun accents...

Blue Mascara!
Colored mascara is a huge trend right now as well. I actually used Kryolan's Aqua Color in #510.

I mentioned the aqua color earlier for the orange base on the eyes-- this product is SO versatile, that I just decided to use it for everything! Obviously, you can use blue eye liner and blue mascara if you have it or can find those easily--BUT if you do have or decide to purchase the aqua colors, you can use it for just about everything :) 

To use it as a mascara, I spritzed the product with water and coated both sides of a flat eyeliner brush. You can then paint it on those lashes! 
I used...
But you can also use, 

IF you do decide to use the aqua color as a colored mascara, be sure to put on your regular mascara first! It will bulk up those lashes and give you all the benefits of the mascara-- the aqua color will only alter the color. 

Because I'm using the aqua color for EVERYTHING, I used it as an eyeliner as well. I followed Melissa's natural eye line, while extending the line at the outer corner a little. Do this on the top and bottom lash lines. 

For the cheeks, I took the blue aqua color on my flat liner brush (photo above), to draw on the thick lines to emulate eye black on the players! 
I topped it off with a dry brush of the Blue Satin Powder to add some sparkle and dimension. 

I was sure to follow suite with orange tinted lips. I also added a dab of our orange satin powder on the center of Melissa's lips (as opposed to gloss), for a matte, yet iridescent effect. 

I hope this inspires you to get out there and play with color! Just remember that there is always a fun, glamorous way to show that spirit! 

Thank you...
Big Thank you to the Chicago Kryolan Store for all the help in choosing these amazing products! 
Kryolan is a pro makeup line that actually manufactures their own products-- what does that mean? It's more affordable, but high end product :) Check it out! 

And of course, many thanks to the lovely producers of WCIU's You & Me This Morning, Summer Jackson and Melissa Perez for the fun segment! 

Feel free to post your sports fan looks! Would love to see what you come up with!
xoxo Jen

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Fighting Humidity- Pro Tips

A few months back, I took charge and started a Hair artist and Makeup artist group called "Beauty Meet Up." 
We try to meet once a month discussing a different topic each meeting. It's an opportunity to get together with these other artists that I NEVER get to see! It's also a chance for all of us to learn from each other!
Some artists have years upon years of experience, while others are just starting out, or maybe building their careers. 

So last night's meeting was a chance to chat about dealing with hair and makeup for Humidity. 

Here's what our group of gals had to say...

For less extreme sweating cases, many of the artists agreed upon a good mattifier. One of MY current favorites, is Nurturing Force

It works as a moisturizer, mattifier, and primer! I love it! 

If someone is exceptionally oily, some of the artists talked about skipping moisturizer and going straight for a mattifier (against my cardinal rule! I  prefer to always use a moisturizer-- even if you're oily! I like a lightweight, oil free moisturizer), but if you DO decide to skip moisturizer for a shoot, the Nurturing Force works fantastically! 

For more extreme cases, where someone will sweat non stop due to heavy costume makeup, or stage lighting, or even just plain old overheating...

Here are some heavy duty products to do the trick.
First up:

This product is applied to the skin before makeup and is a fragrance free, liquid antiperspirant! 

Secondly-- an old school theater trick... 

You can literally walk to Walgreens and pick this up for $8 bucks! I have personally never tried this trick, but many pros swear by it. Apply a thin layer over the face, allow it to dry, apply your foundation, and VOILA! Sweat FREE!

Of course, 
if you're dealing with humid locations and situations.. it's a good idea to use some waterproof or water resistant makeup including these products... 


This product does NOT move. Many of the artists at last night's gathering agreed, it was top notch ;) Simply apply with a thin brush. 


Paint it on, top with the gloss, and it's ON! Coming in a beautiful array of colors, this is beautiful. 

Not ready to spend $24 on a lipstick? Here's the drugstore version..

I will tell you, I own about 8 of these! I love them and I think the packaging is GENIUS. You can't lose any part of the pieces, and you can use the holder as a mirror for application. 

For more waterproof and water resistant makeup, be sure to look into Cinema Secrets and Makeup Atelier

Hair Tips
Pre style...

One of our artist's last night mentioned the beauty of this product! Apply before heat styling the hair, and it leaves a smooth finish. 

To protect your style... 

After your blow out is complete, give a light spritz over top, flip your head, spray again and you're good to go! 

Another little humidity trick I learned...
 I was told to try styling with a wet hairspray as opposed to an aerosol spray. It allows for you to mold the hair and sweep down fly aways, and then set it all with the aerosol once it dries! Something I'll be trying! 

Wet Hairspray Suggestion: 

For your kit... 

Here are some things our artists carry along in their set bags and kits for those hot, humid days... 

Battery Operated Fan
Keep your clients cool between takes to avoid over-powdering them!
Always good to have on hand :) 
Maxi Pads
This is another old school trick for camera-- Makeup artists/stylists would make their talent place maxi pads in the armpit of their shirts so they don't sweat through the clothes!

So go ahead, try some of these anti-humidity tricks for your next client, job, or performance! 

Be sure to check out our artist's from last night's get together! 


Sunday, June 2, 2013

Vacation Makeup

Hi everyone! 
I've had a hectic April and May, so I am finally back (now that June has arrived) in full swing! 

I was away in Mexico for a solid 10 days. It was SO necessary! 
I had just finished a feature that we'd shot in 10 days in Galena, IL. 
(I'll post about that as soon as I'm allowed!)

Film is a lot of work, a lot of time, and little sleep. So I was definitely ready for a vacation!

I don't take much in the way of makeup, because for the entire 10 days I was away, I think put makeup on ONCE! We went out to a nice restaurant and I wanted to look decent : )

So here is my quick before and after as well as what I used. 

Tools and products I packed for my trip (in it's entirety) !

Products Used: 

Tweezerman Classic Eyelash Curler
Maybelline Full 'N' Soft Mascara (waterproof of course)
Three Custom Color Cream to powder blush in Pink
Three Custom Color Invisible pressed powder
Three Custom Color Concealer/foundations in Light and Medium
Eve Pearl Salmon Concealer in Medium 
MAC eyeshadows in Shroom, Cork, and Espresso
Smashbox Lipstain in Guava
*All conveniently packed in my little Z Palette*


What Needed to be Done:

Something I always struggle with is dark circles. I've had them since I was a kid! 
You also can't tell from the photo- but I did have a little too much sun that hit my nose!
I needed to even out my skin a little better. 
Enhance my eyes, and add a little more color!

What was done: 

I took a little concealer/foundation and placed it where ever it was needed to even out redness-- Around the nose, on the chin, forehead and eyes. 

I used Eve Pearl's salmon concealer around the eyes to neutralize any blue cast from the dark circles. 

I added my cream blush to my cheeks and lips with my fingers. 

I set it all with a light dusting of translucent powder.

I added some iridescent shadow (MAC shroom), to the inner corner of my eyes to brighten them. 
I placed a soft brown (MAC cork) in my natural eye crease to add a subtle definition. 

I finished the eyes by curling my lashes and adding a coat of mascara. 

And to polish off the look, I took a little brown eyeshadow (MAC espresso) with an angle hair brush to my brows! 

That's it folks! 

And then I pulled down my beach hair and pinned half up. yay! 

Honestly, this does not fall far from my day to day makeup routine! I'm always sure to carry a few different lipsticks in my purse to change it up :) 

xoxo Jen

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Lash Heaven!

Lashes are always in style. 
But right now one of the trends for spring is that MOD look. 

Immediately, I think of graphic liner and lashes! 
Lashes add so much to a look-- I won't lie, they are pretty addictive :) 

I don't wear them daily, but if I'm going to be on camera, or if I'm going for a night out (special occasions), I love to add them into my makeup routine. 

With a little patience and a lot of practice, you can stick these babies on in no time!

I'll provide a quick breakdown of different lash options for you to find the best one for your needs. I'll also write a step by step of a strip lash HOW TO

There are so many types of lashes as far as styles, adhesives, and length of wear

Here's a quick breakdown of lash options for every need and price range: 

$ The Strip Lash: 
This is a very easy and quick way to achieve a lash boost without too much commitment! They are applied with a latex glue that is bonded to the eyelid close to the natural lash line and can easily be removed by gently pulling them off! They have a wide range from natural looking lashes, to accent lashes, to dramatic and avant garde!

$ Individual Lashes: 
These puppies take some time to get right-- If applied well, they can look super natural, soft and subtle-- but they do take some practice! These can be applied with the same latex glue or can be used with a stronger non latex lash glue that actually bonds the false ones to your real lashes rather than the lid. The non-latex glue has a different removal process and has the potential to stay on for several days. 

$$ Lash Extensions: 
For those of you who want that lash look ALL the time, you can look into lash extensions. These are single lashes applied one by one (usually done at salons or specialty shops), and last for a couple weeks. These are pretty fragile-- so no curling, mascara, or rubbing of those eyes! You also need to go in to get them "filled" (same as acrylic nails) every couple weeks. 

$$$ Latisse: 
This is another semi-permanent type of lash. It is a prescription treatment that actually helps you to grow your own lashes longer, darker and fuller. IT WORKS-- but be sure to read the side effects and potential downfalls--use it at your own risk :)! 
*Please also note, that it is something you have to continue to use--once you stop using it, the lashes go back to the way they were. *

Getting a Natural Looking Lash at Home: 

I am always applying strip and individual lashes to clients--- because I'm so familiar with this form of lash, I'm going to give you an idea of the range strip lashes have to offer-- starting with a more natural looking lash. 

Here are some of my favorites: 
Ardell Lash Accents #315
These are perfect for someone trying lashes for the first time! They are SUPER easy to apply and are a subtle, natural looking addition to your lashes. 

Ardell Duralash Natural knot free lashes in Brown
Don't forget there are brown lashes too! For you pale skinned beauties, blondes and redheads, you can get a soft, natural lash enhancement with these. 

Ardell Twin Pack #110
These are beautiful, and very natural looking with a little extra oomph! Love them-- I use them a lot on clients. 

Going for a Dramatic Lash Look for Evening:  
Ardell Demi Pixies #102
These add some drama and glamour but aren't too heavy. They're a great transition to a nighttime lash! 

Ardell Stunning Lashes
These are a little heavier, definitely more of a night time eye look-- packing on that drama! 

Ardell Demi Wispies
These are my FAVORITE! I wear them, I use them on clients, I LOVE them! They are quite dramatic, but look FAB on camera. I do believe I wore them on New Years Eve...

They are a fuller, feathery lash that pack on some drama :) 

When it comes to putting these fabulous lashes on, you need to find a good latex glue. A lot of lashes come with glue in the package-- I like to save these little guys for emergency touch ups. 

The Duo adhesive is probably the most popular amongst artists and consumers alike. It can be found at any drugstore or beauty supply store and works phenomenally. They have a clear version and a dark version. 
Duo Clear Adhesive

Duo Dark Tone Adhesive

How to use: 
You can put a little glue on a palette or the back of your hand and gently swipe the lash spine (the invisible band that holds the lashes) into the glue to get a thin, even layer. Don't forget to get a little extra on the ends! That's where lashes tend to lift if it gets warm, humid or wet. 
From here, you must wait a minute until the glue gets tacky
you can apply the lashes while the glue is still wet, but it won't adhere as well. Once you let the glue get to that tacky stage (not totally dry!), you can apply them. 

Another great lash glue that I actually carry in my kit is Eve Pearl's eye lash adhesive. 
I LOVE this glue. It only comes in the dark version, so it dries black. For most of my clients (for TV), I can use this as it's not a problem, but if I'm working on a model for a shoot or on a client who wants a very soft natural lash line, I use the Duo in clear. 
The greatest part about Eve Pearl's version, is that you don't have to wait for the glue to get tacky, you can apply it right away! And it lasts! Not that waiting a few extra seconds for the Duo to get tacky is that long, but makes a big difference if you are on set and need to get your client out of the chair asap!

Step By Step Application: 
1. Curl your lashes and apply mascara. 
2. Choose your falsies by your mood and occasion :) 
3. Gently roll the lashes off the plastic container with your thumb and flex the spine so it's not stiff!
4. Gently place it on your eye (ON the lash line), to measure it out. If you need to trim the ends to make it fit more naturally, please do! It's rare that the strip fits perfectly on someone's eye! 
5. Apply your glue of choice. If using brown (or colored liner) or NO liner, be sure to go with the clear glue, but if using black liner, you can use the black drying glue. The choice is yours!
-- If using the DUO, be sure to wait a minute for it to become tacky. --
Quick Tip: 
Using a small cosmetic stand up mirror, position it under your chin, so that you have to look down to see yourself. This way, you don't need to try to close your eye to apply the lash as you are already looking downward--it makes the application SO MUCH EASIER! I still apply lashes this way on myself!

6. While looking down into your mirror, place the CENTER of the strip onto the center of your eye. Wiggle it into place. 
You are lashed out! 

It may take a few minutes to feel normal while the glue is drying, but after that, you will soon forget they're even on! 

So enjoy! Try out a set of lashes soon! 
xoxo Jen
Photos of lashes c/o ardell 
Photos of Duo Lash glue c/o Sephora 
Photos of Eve lash glue c/o