Sorry to everyone for my absence on the site. I am ready to share my #4 favorite makeup product. Knowing the best make up is great, but what about getting it all off? Vancouver makeup artist number 4 favorite product is Lancome Bi- Facil eye makeup remover.
The reason I choose this product as my favorite makeup remover is because it works so well at getting all your makeup off. One of my biggest pet peeves as a makeup artist is makeup removers that make a big mess. Lancome Bi-Facil remover gets it all off with very little pulling or tugging at the skin. Since the skin around your eyes is so sensitive, it is important to be as gentle as possible while taking off your eye makeup. A little of this remover goes a long way, so you don’t have to use a lot to get your face clean. I find that it is really gentle on the skin and eyes and I have yet to heard of anyone who has had a reaction to it. It runs for about $30 a bottle.
There is a down side to such a efficient remover, and it is the fact that it is so oily. It can be annoying to have to wash your face after having just washed your face. When you use this remover to get your makeup off you then have to use a lot of water to get the remover off. Unfortunately if you are wearing eyelash extensions the oil from this remover will actually remove your extensions as well. Another down side for some may be the price. You may be thinking “There must be another remover that is just as good and not so pricey.” I am sorry to say–there isn’t. I have found one that is a close second though.
For those of you looking for something a little less pricey but almost as efficient you may wanna try the Marcelle oil based makeup remover, that runs for about $15.
I hope you found this information useful and remember I love to hear your feedback.
I think you guys are all going to love Sarah’s next transformation. I first thought of the idea to turn Sarah into a man at our last photo shoot. The whole crew, including Sarah was up for it. For those of you following the “Transforming Sarah” Series, you would agree that there is nothing masculine about her features, but like all the other looks– after hair, makeup, costumes and an amazing photographer, we pulled it off. Just in case you haven’t been following or can’t remember what our muse looks like before here is a photo.
As always Jonathan Cruz, our photographer, took step by step photos of the process for your amusement. In this case there was no need for an even complexion, so I skipped my usual first step of prepping the skin and preparing a clear canvas. The first step for this transformation was fitting Sarah for her beard.
Once I had the beard properly fitted on Sarah, I could secure it down with a special adhesive and I cut the beard down to an appropriate length and shape for her face.
It wasn’t too long into the transformation before Sarah was shocked to see how different she was starting to look. After her eyebrows were drawn in to give her a more masculine look, she gasped and said, “I look like my brother.” Jonathan quickly took a picture of her reaction.
Soon after, Trish Ay, our guest hairstylist started slicking back Sarah’s beautiful long blonde hair and pinned it back so it wouldn’t be noticable. Since light colored beards usually don’t grow in just one color, I decided to make the beard look more natural by coloring in parts of the hair. Sarah was really starting to look like a man, but I felt her skin still looked too youthful and beautiful. So in order to age her and give her rougher look, I added some age spots and wrinkles, then darken around her eyes to make them look sunken in and less feminine.
Meanwhile our very talented costume stylist, Sara Rakhshandeh was busy picking out the perfect costumes for our model. Unfortunately our model’s body just wasn’t masculine enough, so Sara Rakhshandeh realized that the one thing this man was missing was broad shoulders. This was no problem as our costume stylist improvised by stuffing some socks for padding under her shirt. Once the Sarah changed into her costume and a few accessories were added– the difference was shocking. Ms. Smyth had turned into to Mr. Smyth.
Here our a few photos including the before and after of the this incredibly fun shoot.
Sarah as "Steve"
We recently added a new addition to our crew, Dan Ax has been filming the process for us and has put together a video that I think will make you chuckle. Take a look at this
Remember if you have any suggestions for our Transforming Sarah Series please leave your comments. We are up for any challenge. We hope you enjoyed following along with this shoot as much as we enjoyed doing it. Stay tuned for Sarah’s next transformation were we turn her into a pin up model.
So I am sure you all remember Sarah Smyth from our “Transforming Sarah” series, where we take a classic beauty and transform her into several different looks. In case you don’t remember what our sweet, innocent girl-next-door looks like, here is a picture to remind you all.
Sarah came up with the idea of doing a “bad girl” or “rockstar” theme shoot during our previous 1920’s shoot. She said “Nobody ever sees me as a bad girl. I wanna show some edge.” So Jonathan Cruz, our talented photographer along with our all-star team– hair designer Trish Ay, wardrobe specialist Sara Rakhshandeh, and yours truly as makeup artist…. All of us got together to turn our sweet innocent Sarah into a rockstar. Jonathan took a few photos of the process for your enjoyment.
First our celebrity costume stylist Sara picked out the costumes for Sarah. Then, came hair and makeup. I always start by prepping the skin, so that I have a clear canvas to work with. I prefer using a foundation brush to apply the base because sponges tend to soak up the makeup and are not very enviromentally friendly. In this case I used Bed Head #2 fat-free (cream base) and Estee Lauder #2 concealer under the eyes.
We had a time crunch, so as usual we double-teamed on the hair and makeup. Sarah just sat back and watched herself transform. Trish put black and purple extensions in Sarah’s hair to give her some length and some edge. I chose to do a dark black heavy smokey eye on Sarah give her that dramatic cat-eye effect. After about one hour of makeup, back-combing, teasing, hair extensions and lashes….Voila… Sarah looked like a whole new girl.
For Sarah’s smokey eye I used Elizabeth Arden “Smoke” on Sarah’s eyelids and Mac “Carbon” around the entire frame of her eyes. I lined the rim of her eyes with Lancome “black coal” liner and applied false lashes. To counterbalance Sarah’s dramatic eyes I chose to give her a pale lip with Revlon “Nude” lipstick and a clear gloss to finish the look.
Lets take a look at Sarah’s after shots.
Not so innocent looking now, is she?
Towards the end of our shoot we decided that Sarah was looking too flawless to be a real rockstar so we had her start to cry, we messed up her hair and makeup and put her in her final costume for the day. She was a real trooper…it was a cold day out and she didn’t complain once. I think she was so into her character that she didn’t even notice how cold it was. All in all, it was an incredibly fun day we all had together, and it was a thrill for me to work alongside such talented and gifted artists.
We hope you guys enjoyed following along as much as we enjoyed doing it. Remember our team is up for any challenge, so if there is a look you want to see Sarah transformed into please leave your comments.
I am well aware that I have been slacking on this list. I have recently got a new puppy and she is taking up all my time. Today I thought I had better start writing #5.
A very common question that I get asked is, what mascara is the best? The answer is not as easy as you think. There are many great mascaras out there, but depending on your eyelashes you would need a different kind of mascara wand. I notice that fat thick mascara wands work best with short thin lashes and thin mascara wands are best for just getting a little length or light colored lashes.
Like I have mentioned before, I am not a fan of waterproof mascara’s. The reason that I don’t like waterproof mascara is because it takes a lot of tugging and pulling at your eyes to get it off at the end of the night. I also don’t like the way it looks when compared to the regular non-waterproof mascara. For those of you who wear waterproof mascara because your mascara is always running down your face, contact me about eyelash extensions.
I had a really hard time narrowing down #5 to just one mascara, but I have chosen the one that I had used on myself for years before I got my eyelash extensions. My favorite mascara and the one I use on others most often is the L’Oreal Voluminous mascara. This one beats all other mascaras mainly because of the cost. It can be found at most drug stores for less than $10 as appose the my second favorite mascara, Lancome Definicils, which goes for $30 a tube. L’Oreal Voluminous mascara is so creamy and goes on very smooth. My favorite color in this mascara is the carbon black, because I think in most cases the darker the better. This mascara can be applied on with just one coat for a natural look or you can apply a couple of coats for a more dramatic look.
There are two down sides to this mascara, first it only comes with the thick wands, so if you want a very thin application you may want to buy a pack of thin mascara wands to dip in the the tube. Secondly after about one month of opening the bottle it starts to get clumpy. Even though you should be replacing your mascaras often, I think every month is excessive. Good thing I have a little trick!
One day while putting a little nail polish remover in a dried up nail polish I had an idea. ”What if I put eye makeup remover in my dried up mascara? ” Guess what, It worked! All you need is a few drops of your eye makeup remover in your mascara tube, shake it up and its like new again! But remember this is my little secret so lets keep it between us. (Don’t tell anyone!)
If you have any questions about this post or any others please leave your comments. I love hearing your feedback.
If you guys are anything like me then you may be very curious about what the Botox process entails. I know that some of you may have a lot of questions or concerns but do not have to time to go talk to your doctor about them. Dr. Kara Partovi of West Richmond Dental who happens to also offer botox in her office in Richmond B.C is willing to answer all our botox questions. She has had specialized training for the past few years on Botox, and I have written a list of questions for Dr. Partovi, but I also wanted to give you guys the opportunity to ask your own questions too. All you have to do is click “comments” to ask your questions. If you would like to remain anonymous then just put and alias or type anonymous as a name.
How much does it cost?
How long does it last?
Are there any negative side effects?
Once I start will I have to keep doing it forever?
How do I know when I should start botox on an area of my face?
Can botox cause permanent paralysis?
Does it hurt to have a botox injection?
Will I have any bruising after the injections? If so how long will it last?
I know that #6 is long overdue, but with wedding season approaching I have been too overwhelmed for the list. Enough waiting, here is Vancouver makeup artist number #6th most favorite product. This product is so popular, I have yet to meet another professional makeup artist that does not have it in their makeup kit. Working as a makeup artist in the Vancouver film industry, one of my favorite products….. is blush. I believe every girl can benefit from a little blush. I know a lot of women stay away from it because they are not sure what color is right for them, but Nars‘ ”orgasm” (that’s actually the name of the color) seems to work for almost anyone.
If you are in doubt as to which blush will work for you, try Nars “orgasm”. I highly doubt that you will be the one person out of a million it does not suit. Of course, for many of you there may be something that suits you even better, but until you find your perfect shade use this one as a default. Normally when you go to the Nars counter at Holt Renfrew you will notice that there are two spots for the shade “orgasm”. One is always empty and the other is close to empty. That’s because it’s the most popular color they sell. All of these famous faces on the left are wearing the exact same, extremely versatile shade.
The reason why Nars is known for their blush products is because of their strong pigment content and ease of application. I believe this shade is such a hit because of this combination. As a makeup artist whenever I am picking out a blush for a actor or bride, I choose from two basic colors–either pink or peach, depending on the look we’re going for, and the client’s skin tone. I very rarely use plums or other colors. Nars’ orgasm is a perfect blend of pink and peach! It also has a little bit of shimmer to help you highlight your cheekbones.
I know what you are all thinking, what are the drawbacks to this blush if it works for almost anyone? Here it is– the problem with the Nars blush is that the reason they are easy to apply is because the blush is so soft. If you are not careful it’s common for the blush to crumble in the compact. When it crumbles, it gets destroyed. I have dropped every Nars “orgasm” blush I have ever owned and unfortunately as a result, all of them have crumbled. Guaranteed. For $25 CAD per compact, watching your hard earned money fall to pieces can be very disappointing. If you are going to try this fabulous shade, I don’t recommend you leave it in your purse or anywhere else that you wouldn’t want to see a mess. Keep it somewhere safe where you know it won’t break (easier said than done).
If you have any questions on this or any other products please feel free to click “comments” to ask your questions. I love hearing your feedback. I hope you found this useful.
Tobin Smith, a well known photographer in Vancouver, decided for mothers day he would get his wife Sarah, the “Yummy Mummy Makeover”. Sarah is naturally beautiful already so it was an easy job for me, but here is what we did: First Sarah started with a full set of eyelash extensions. Since Sarah has a simple style, we choose a natural look for her lashes. Check this out!
Everyone wonders how the process is actually done, so we thought we would take a few photos to show you what goes on during the eyelash extension application:
While lying on a massage table your eyes are protected by Co Q10 treatment patches.
Next, your natural lashes are curled to match your new extensions
Each lash is singled out and an extension is applied directly on top of your natural lash
Lets take a look at Sarah before and After the eyelash extensions.
Sarah absolutely loved her new lashes! You can see what a difference they make, but Sarah’s special day didn’t end there. Next Sarah got to have her makeup done so her Photographer husband could capture the transformation with some photos. Like always we thought we would show you step by step photos of her makeover.
We always start by prepping the skin. In this case I used Armani foundation on Sarah to add an all over glow.
A light application of Mac "Prism" blush to the cheekbones
I used "Bed Head gold shimmer" eyeshadow on Sarah's eyelid to enhance her blue eyes.
A touch of Bobby brown liner to frame her eyes. Guess what no mascara! (Eyelash Extensions virtually eliminate the need for any mascara)
For the final step I used Mac "Spice" lip liner and "Varnish" lip gloss to add to Sarah's all over glow
The trick with Sarah’s makeover was to keep her looking as natural as possible. That is done by using neutral colors, instead of bold colors. The all-over-glow gave Sarah that clean look that tied everything together. Lets take a look at Sarah before her “Yummy Mummy Makeover” and after.
I have recently had the pleasure of working with a very well known Vancouver Photographer by the name Jonathan Cruz. I first met Jonathan over 9 years ago, when I had just finished makeup school. Jonathan and I shared a hobby, salsa dancing. At the time, mutual friends told me how well-respected Jonathan was as a photographer in Vancouver. I was intrigued, so I looked into some of his work and fell in love with his style right away. I thought “I am gonna work with this guy someday and make something amazing!” Fast forward 9 years and I am doing just that. Jonathan recently came to me with the idea of taking one female subject, and as a team, working to transform her into several looks over a series of photo shoots. You always hear how much difference photography,costume, hair and makeup can make, so we thought we would show you how fun and incredible the process can be. We choose Sarah, a classic beauty. We decided for our first shoot with Sarah we would go back to the 1920’s. The first step in transformation is picking out a few costumes for Sara, which were donated by celebrity costume stylist Sara Rakhshandeh. Once the costumes, accessories and shoes were all carefully chosen, we started the next step in the transformation–Hair and makeup. First, we started by prepping the skin and hair.
Jonathan and I had a very clear vision of how we thought this 1920’s girl should look. What could be more 1920’s than the classic finger wave hair style? Trish Ay was the hair stylist and she had a big job ahead of her, since the finger wave may be one of the hardest hairstyles to achieve. All the while, Jonathan was snapping pictures for all of you to be able to see and enjoy the step by step process as we enjoyed every moment of it. Here is a great photo of the beginning stage of the finger wave.
We originally decided to use Sarah as our muse because of her simple and classic beauty, but realized how much easier it is to work with someone who is so professional. We had a time crunch and had to get things moving, so Trish and I double teamed hair and makeup to get things moving. Sarah was a trooper and just sat back as an observer, just quietly watching herself being transformed. Jonathan was still busy taking pictures for our readers to be able to follow.
After an hour or so in the hair and makeup chair Sarah had been transformed and was taken back to the 20’s. She could barely recognize herself. What happened to that sweet innocent girl next door? Now it was time for a few test shots by Jonathan, but Sarah was a bit nervous on how to pose since she is an actress and not a professional model. We had to bring in an expert on this kind of thing, so to show Sarah how to pose we brought a visitor. It was Sofia, Jonathan’s adorable little girl and Sofia showed Sarah how it’s done. Take a look at this.
So there you have it, our first of the series in transforming Sarah. Stay tuned for the photos from this shoot. I think you will all be amazed. Sarah shocked us all with her comfort and natural talent for modeling. Jonathan had amazing, creative ideas for photos and locations. We hope you all enjoy this series and please keep us posted with your comments. We want to include you in our process, if there is a look you would like to see Sara transformed into, just click “comments” to leave your ideas, we are up for any challenge!
My recent post about bags under the eyes has brought up some very good questions from a reader. The question was, “ What product do you recommend for dark circles under the eye? How does one choose the right shade? And, do you have tips on how to get rid of those? I did try putting cucumber on both eyes once but I find it really cumbersome.”
Many of you don’t know why you even have dark circles under your eyes, or why they suggest you use cucumber to relieve them. Dark circles are actually bruised sinuses. That is why they can get so much worse if we are sick, have allergies or have been up crying all night long. The more bruising and swelling we have in our sinuses, the more dark circles we get. One of the major reasons cucumber is suggested is because a cold cucumber can help reduce bruising. Ice works much the same way. Have you ever seen those gel eye masks in the drugstores? Well that is what they are for, to reduce swelling and bruising in the sinus area. If you have heavy bruising I would suggest the eye patches over the cucumber. Both make a minimal difference in day to day sinus bruising, but can work wonders when we have excessive bruising from allergies, colds, etc.
As for products, there are many great concealers out there, but there is one in particular that I find myself reaching for most often. Unfortunately this concealer is in my Top Ten list so I can’t tell you which one it is quite yet (sorry). Although if you keep an eye out over the next few weeks, I guarantee it will pop up on my top ten.
As for finding the perfect shade and color for a concealer, there is definitely some tricks. Lets start with the shade. Depending on what time of the year it is, winter or summer, you would be picking a different color concealer. I always recommend buying one shade in the winter and another one in the summer. When choosing a concealer, pick up all the ones that are close to your skin color. If the only options are either a shade darker than you or a shade lighter than you, you should always go with lighter. Just a note the color the woman is wearing on the left, would be considered too light for her.
Now, the real trick comes with the undertone. Just because the shade is right for you doesn’t mean it’s going to cover those circles. Depending on what color you dark circles are, you will pick a different undertone. What I mean by this is, in order to cover the circles under your eyes, you have to use the opposite color on the color wheel to cancel the dark circles out. For example if your circles are blue in color you want and hint of orange in your concealer. If you have purple colored circles, then you would use a concealer with a hint of yellow and so on. You can bookmark this page and use this color wheel as a reference.
I always suggest when buying a concealer for under the eyes, you choose a line that has a hint of reflectors in it. That way you don’t get that cakey look like you do with other concealers.
Good luck, and if you have any more questions on how to pick a concealer or any other product, click on “comments”.