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Mature Makeup

January 8, 2010

Makeup for Grandma is definitely different from yours or your mom’s. Two major adjustments in makeup application include the types of products used and the intensity of color:

The types of products used need to be tailored for the characteristics of aged skin.

Foundation: As we age, skin becomes dryer (less oil production and slower natural exfoliation process), so you want to use a dewy or semi-matte liquid foundation. Cream is too heavy and draw attention to dehydration and uneven skin texture. You little to no loose powder to set the foundation.

Matte colors: Generally, you should NOT use shimmer because it can look dated on a older face and will draw more attention to wrinkles and loss of elasticity.  Avoid shimmers mainly in eye shadows and lip color. But, you can venture out with blush because the cheek color is supposed to be transparent anyway and won’t reflect as obviously as the other products.

The intensity of colors should be appropriate for the age of the client, generally speaking. Of course, give more drama to the divas and fashionistas that ask for it.

For a natural look, you want to keep colors neutral in light to medium shades. For my model, who is 65, she had dark hair (thanks to permanent color) and dark eyes, so I could afford to use darker shades of brown. Also, I wanted to contour (push back or cause recession) on the prominent part of her eye socket to make her eyelid appear more like a consistent plane.

How many years younger do you think she looks now?

Learn to Layer

January 5, 2010

My model has a pretty clear complexion. However, the patches of freckles on her cheeks took away from her otherwise even-looking skin.

Before I applied foundation, I made a tinted green moisturizer by mixing my Embroylisse moisturizer (Lait-Crème Concentrè) with Make Up For Ever’s corrective loose powder to cancel some of the redness in her cheeks. You can also use a tinted makeup base such as the one made by Smashbox.

My model typically zuses heavier coverage foundation to cover up the hyperpigmentation. Instead of going full coverage all over (because she doesn’t need it), I used a sheer layer of liquid foundation all over first. Then, to address the freckles, I used layers of foundation as a concealer. I didn’t use a traditional cream concealer as I did not want it to look heavy or spotty. For more coverage, you can use a powder foundation on top of the loose powder.

Freckles or dark spots on the face are caused by sun damage. The skin is actually trying to create a shield on your face to prevent burning. In order to reduce the appearance of unwanted dark splotches, you should invest in basic skin care that is brightening or whitening. In addition, you can use a corrective produce such as fade cream. Dermablend’s famous product is now discontinued, but you can find it on or E-bay. Alternatives can be found under Hyperpigmentation sections of department stores.

Middle-Aged Makeup

December 28, 2009

There’s a couple key things to consider when doing makeup for middle-aged women.

First, skin has lost a considerable amount of elasticity. Eyelids are hooded (droopy) toward the outer corners and the lid is crepey, making even a conservative amount of makeup difficult to apply with a consistent texture.

Second, less is more. Heavy application or dark makeup is not flattering, even if they are going clubbing (which is another issue in itself).

Since they have less color in their lips and cheeks and less “glow” due to decreased oil production and slower cellular rejuvenation–the process by which healthy cells are born within your skin and make it to the surface–the goal is to obtain a bright and youthful look.

My #1 priority before makeup application was to do a full brow reconstruction (tweezing, that is). In the end, the face will appeared cleaner and eyes more open and lifted. I used color on top of her brows to make them higher and more arched.

Her additional beauty concerns included nasolabial folds and faded permanent makeup.

Nasolabial folds (AKA “smile lines”)

These “parentheses” around the mouth can be a result of aging. (If you’ve had it all your life, sorry, it’s just what your mama gave you.) The sagging of the skin on the cheeks creates shadows around the mouth. In order to reduce the appearance of the folds, I reduced the dark shadows with foundation a few shades lighter than her skin.


She had eyeliner tattoos that were dark, thick, and faded. Since they had a muted blue hue, I used a sheer coat of muted-orange concealer to cancel out the blue, then used a creamy concealer underneath to match the color to the rest of the eye area.

Since the area around her eyes had fine lines, I opted to use less product and sacrificed a little tattoo still showing. In order to cancel out the color completely, I would have had to use such a thick coat that it would have drawn even more attention.

Lastly, I want to touch on Color Choice.

Going back to point #2, less is more. Dark features such as dark eye color and dark hair set up color choices that can be equally as dark. But, in the case of my middle-aged client, it looked nothing close to youthful or sexy. It just looked plain wrong!

What NOT To Do

Please save your urges to try smokey eyes on your mom’s and grandma’s.

Powder or Plastic?

December 22, 2009

Instead of plastic surgery, which is painful and costly, you can visually alter the bone structure of your face through makeup. Corrective makeup application can give the illusion of a slimmer face, sculpted cheekbones, fuller lips, etc.

Before you feel insulted, I wanted to point out that corrective makeup doesn’t necessarily mean “you’re ugly” and your face needs to be “corrected”. Corrective makeup is about enhancing your good features and letting them overshadow your not-so good ones. Even the most beautiful of celebrities and models utilize these techniques.

The goal with corrective makeup is to make the face appear as balanced and symmetrical as possible. This is what the eye and brain interpret as beauty. Don’t believe me? When’s the last time you thought Quasimodo was hot stuff?

In lieu or addition to contour/highlight powder, the most natural and long-lasting way to do this is with liquid or cream foundation.

Here is an example of using cream foundation to alter features of the face.

1.  Apply concealer to brighten eye area (inner corners near nose and underneath eye).

2. Apply highlight, a foundation color lighter than your skin, on eyes and underneath eyes (from inner corner sweeping up to the temples). This will make you eyes appear more open and lifted.

3. Apply highlight to areas of the nose you’d like to enhance. Here, I added to the upper bridge and the left side of her nose.

4. Apply foundation that matches her skin on the rest of the face. The surface redness is instantly reduced and skin complexion is more even.

5. Apply contour, a darker matte neutral brown and/or charcoal grey cream foundation, in areas you’d like to minimize attention, thus directing attention to the highlighted areas.

For her nose, I want it to appear straighter and draw attention to the bride. I contoured on the sides of her bridge and on the bottom portion of the nose.

For her cheeks, I contoured on the underside of the cheekbone (not underneath). The shadow created enhances her cheeks and makes her face look slimmer…without any blush color!

Stay tuned for more details on where, how, and what to apply for contours/highlights.

glamOh session: Michelle MU

August 31, 2009
Makeup Session for Michelle

Michelle wanted to change up her look and utilize more of the makeup she currently owns. The key focus for this makeover was to incorporate pretty colors on her eyes, a change from the usual dark browns and charcoals she uses on a daily day/night basis.

Here is her Chanel eyeshadow quad we used. It has a satin finish (in between shimmer and matte) with dark plum, medium lilac, pink, and off-white. Chanel eyeshadows tend to have good pigmentation and blend well. Quad palettes are a convenient way to have all the colors you need for smokey eyes.

Top adjustments made to Michelle’s makeup regimen:
1. Liquid/creme foundation
2. Cool colors on eyes
3. Contoured cheeks and more color
4. Lip color

1. Liquid/creme foundation – Michelle usually uses a foundation powder compact applied with a large brush. Liquid foundation followed by a light dusting of translucent loose powder can help even out complexion and have a more second-skin effect than heavy coverage powder. Lucky for her, no concealer was needed as the foundation evened out her skin perfectly.

2. Eyes Instead of a dark smokey eye, I used the same techniques for purple. Proper blending and highlighting is important when using colors like purple so you don’t look like you have bruised eye.

To intensify the look for a party she was attending in the late evening, I added more of the darkest purple shade to the outer corners of her eye on top and bottom. We finished off with a black liner and smudged it for a more blended effect.

3. Contoured cheeks and more color- Michelle has great cheekbones. She usually adds color to the apples with a light/medium bronzer. I decided to scupt her cheek with contouring powder, medium neutral blush, and pink blush for a more defined look. I highlighted the top of her cheek to keep the look natural and glow-y.

4. Lip color – Michelle uses a neutral pink or nude gloss daily. I used a neutral lipstick color to it last throughout the day, followed by a pink gloss.

The cool colors in this look can be worn with a LBD for a night look or a summer dress for a day look. Colors can be versatile. All you need to adjust is the intensity of the application to switch from day to night.

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Hello world!

August 19, 2009

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Interview with the Glampire: Hair Trial

August 13, 2009
Wedding Trial for Bridesmaid

The bride is wearing her hair up, so all the bridesmaids (including my client) will be wearing their hair down.

Her requirements were to keep bangs in the front and have loose waves. We tried a half ‘do to keep the look polished, but not as formal as the bride.

Closeup of the upstyle (left). I describe this shape as a clover. It’s a reinvention of a traditional bun, in a way.

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