New Kit Favourites

A makeup artists kit is ever growing. Not only do things need replenishing often, technology changes so fast that there are always new things to try and products that are improved upon. Add to that the fact that, well, I love make-up, I stand no chance!

These are a few of the more recent additions to my kit that I’ve been really enjoying.

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Liz Martin lashes- a fab collaboration with Salon System has resulted in a selection of lashes, both individuals and sets of strip lashes that deserve their place in any kit. Each set has varying sizes and thickness levels to enable a fully customised look that can work for everyone. Pricier than your average set of lashes but I feel justifiably so.

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In addition to the foundations I already have in my kit (Laura Mercier, Bobbi Brown, Nars, Face Atelier) I spotted these one day on a peruse round Boots and decided to try out a few shades. They have turned out to be so lovely, I’ve used them a lot more than I intended to. I mix them in with other bases so as not to create a shimmery effect that may cause problems on camera. Ideal for drier, slightly dull skin that needs illuminating whilst covering. I have 3 shades, one neutral, one cool and one warm. These are there to fill in a gap I felt I wanted to fill for a base for the drier skin, originally I was going to buy the Bourjois Healthy mix range which I know are lovely but I need a wider tone range than they offer. I need to have the pinker undertones as I’m working on real people with real skin tones rather than just models. I’ll definitely be adding in the remaining 2 shades and if they extend the range, then I’ll get them all.

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This is a brow pencil from a brand called Anastasia. I saw the lovely Sam from Pixiwoo wax lyrical about these and I’m always on the quest for better brows. For me and my clients!
The Brow Wiz isn’t a regular pencil, it’s a very fine tipped retractable pencil with a lovely, highly pigmented waxy finish. I’ve only invested in two and so far, I’m road testing this one myself. I love it so much it’s not made it out of my own bag yet! It has replaced my RMK pencil which I lost my love for after my last one ended up being sharpened away to a nub within 2 weeks.
I use Medium Ash rather than Brunette as I fill in quite extensively,so I’d rather not go for the darkest shade. The other one I bought was a basic pencil in Ash Blonde. I anted to try and replace my Laura Mercier Blonde pencil which is the best blonde brow pencil I’ve found yet. This was still very much warmer than the LM which isn’t my cup of tea.

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I stopped by the Bobbi Brown counter a few months back and had a quick refresh of some products and saw the Long Wear collections and a few things caught my eye.
One of them was this beautiful bronze-mauve shade called Velvet Plum in her Long Wear eyeshadow range. I almost always use a waterproof cream shadow on my clients first and then layer shadow on top so this was a good addition for me. Nice and sheer yet buildable, I wish it had a tad more pigment, however I’m really happy with the colour. I also picked up a matte shade called Heather. A grey mauve that is superb with brown and hazel eyes.

I also picked up some correctors for under the eye. I did have these in my kit a few years ago but they turned and the texture changed so I chucked them. The shades I’m starting with are Bisque and Light Peach. I will be investing in the BBU palette which has all the shades in the correctors, concealers and also the stick bases.

The Bobbi Brown gel liners are another of her star products and I grabbed a few of them too. Black Mauve- as it sounds, a plum based black
Violet- a stunning Cadbury purple with a shot of shimmer, looks wicked with a luxurious bronze eye.
Granite- a matte, deep grey.
These replaced my ELF cream liners which were a bargain but prove that you get what you pay for as they dried up within 3 months.

Finally, I have replenished my skin care. I have used a few Avene products on myself and really like them so I have purchased a Hydrating serum, a Rich Hydrating cream, a Light Hydrating Cream and a Mattifying fluid. Let’s see how I get on with them.

I have a loooong wish list of different products I’m intending on purchasing over the next few weeks to tide me through the rest of this crazy busy season. I’ll try and get them blogged soon too, inbetween weddings, shoots, trials and being mummy!

Katy x

Win a Pre-Wedding photo shoot!

 

imagesCARA1A2UJust a quick one to say that I am involved in a fantastic competition to win your pre-wedding shoot with the fabulous Kim and Jeanette from Cocoon Photography. I will be there to do your make-up and get you confident and camera ready also Alexandra from The Bijou Bride will be on hand to style you.

This is being held by Your Herts and Beds Wedding Magazine so if you’re local and would like to be considered, pop over here and enter!

Closing date is September 23rd so we have 1 month exactly.

Good luck!

Rock my Wedding–Dolly Daydream

The final instalment of the Dolly Series shoot with the RMW Girls and Julia Boggio.

Imagine my surprise when I got the brief for this look. They asked if I could create a look with yellow eyeshadow and coral lips…. Now, I wasn’t afraid, (much) it’s just ben a while since I’ve had to use a yellow shade on the eyes. My crazy fashion make-up days are behind me.

So I experimented and it actually didn’t take me too long to find a yellow combination I was really happy with.

Have a look at the post here and I tell you in the article the products I used. When I get the actual images, I’ll do another seperate post with a more detailed breakdown.

For the other instalments, click here for Dolly Rock, Here for Dolly Pop part 1 and here for Dolly Pop part 2.

I hope you love it!

Katy xx

Rock my Wedding–Dolly Pop Part 2

 

Me again, this time with the second instalment of the second instalment (that does make sense, it  just sounds wrong!).

Sticking with the beautiful model Chara, we switched the hair and changed the dress and got a whole different feel. A killer look. One of my favourites.

Check it out here on Rock my Wedding.

Another shoot coming up later this evening!

Yours,

Katy xx

Rock my Wedding–Dolly Pop!

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The second instalment of the shoot we did at Nonsuch Mansion. Sticking to the Dolly theme, this is Dolly Pop. Think bright pastel shades and retro decor. And SOOOOOO lovely to showcase that brides can indeed wear colour in their make-up! It doesn’t all have to be seven different varieties of beige and champagne Winking smile

 

Styled by the gorgeous Rebecca and Charlotte from Rock my Wedding, Hair by Cassandra from Love Your Hair and photography by Julia Boggio.

To see yesterdays instalment of Dolly Rock with a carpet of 12” records, click on here and let me know what you think!

Oh and there’s going to be a second part up later today, still Dolly Pop but a wee bit different. Eeep!

 

Until then xx

Rock My Wedding–Dolly Rock

 

A while back I grinned from ear to ear whilst reading an e-mail from the 2 lovely ladies Charlotte and Rebecca at the epic wedding Blog, Rock my Wedding. They asked if I wanted to take part in a styled shoot they were doing, with none other than legendary photographer Julia Boggio.

I waited a cool…erm 5 minutes before replying with a resounding YES!

This is the first time I have seen the images and there are 3 parts to this shoot, so I’ve still got Parts 2 and 3 to even see myself!

Part 1 is all about exploring your inner Rock Chick and translating that into Bridal.

Check it out here and be sure to comment, either here or on the RMW blog.

Keep your eye out for the next Dolly tomorrow!

Until then

Katy xx

New Discoveries of 2011

 

It’s been a very long while since I wrote about products that I’m using or indeed did a review. So I have put together a list of the new discoveries I have made so far this year and I’ll attempt to give a little mini review on each.

Firstly, having been a Bi-Facil user for many years I decided it was time to branch out and find a less expensive but just as effective replacement! I’m thrilled t say that I did so in the form of Bourjois Express Eye Make-up Remover. A hefty 200ml for £4.99 from Boots, it’s a great deal better value for money per ml than most others I’ve found. It sweeps effortlessly through e heavy eye make-up and doesn’t leave an oily residue or sting the eye. My only gripe is the lid and the nozzle. The hole doesn’t have a raised lip which would help to aim the product in one direction when poured out onto a cotton pad. This does tend to spurt out everywhere if you’re not controlling it.

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At the end of January, I decided to treat myself to a facial and I chose to go and see the Decleor counter in Brent Cross as I knew the therapist there and trusted her to be careful with my temperamental skin. The facial itself was to die for and the clever Caroline also twigged from my back treatment that I was pregnant ( I was literally 4 weeks along!). I left there with  a new  Decleor Gel Cleanser and I picked up the special sale size which is 400ml for £21. Considering the 200ml is usually approx. £16 I think? I was and still am very happy with it. That’s 3 months ago and I’m only half way through it.

Decleor Cleanser

Since my pregnancy has progressed I have noticed some changes in my skin. Only really in these last 3 weeks but the difference is very noticeable, to me at least. My usually super oily skin has all of a sudden become normal. In fact, so much so that I’m almost bordering on sometimes feeling dry! All very new to me… But up until this revelation, I was really enjoying using the Clarins Toning Lotion with Iris. It really freshened up my skin without leaving it feeling tight. It also helped to control my oiliness throughout the day.

Toning Lotion

Another product I took with me from my facial is the Decleor Ylang Ylang Purifying Night Balm. I’m still using this even though my oiliness has gone (albeit I’m sure temporarily) but I still have congestion issues. This is a lovely balm which I’m using on a nightly basis to help draw out any impurities.

Ylang Ylang

Now I used Laura Mercier foundations for many years and I still rate them very highly, I do love it when I find something else that suits my skin type and tone. This latest discovery is Lancôme Teint Idole Silky Matte in Shade 010. When I was still suffering from extreme oiliness, I set this with a powder. Now, I don’t need to but I still like the smooth matte finish it gives me. Light to medium coverage, I can build this up pretty easily if I need to. I lightly sweep this on with a domed synthetic Sephora foundation brush.

Silky Matte

For those of you that follow the fabulous Pixiwoo ladies Sam and Nic will have no doubt at one point seen Nic using the Bourjois Mineral Radiance Pressed Powder more than once! I did and thought it looked so gorgeous on her, I wanted in! I an a good 2-3 shades at least lighter than Nic so I went for shade 04 Beige Medium. It doesn’t work for me as a blusher which is what I wanted it for. However, I have been using it as a very light bronzer, contour and also to warm up my neck which is a shade bluer than the rest of my body! Really sheer and easy to apply without streaking.

Mineral Radiance

In my need to replace another Laura Mercier Blusher, I stumbled across this L’Oreal True Match Blusher on one of my frequent trips to Boots. It has been one of my best finds, not only of the year so far but overall. Amazing pigment, great shade and matte! Woohoo! Shade 120 Sandalwood Pink is just a beautiful shade of peachy pink and brightens up my lacklustre winter complexion nicely. It comes with a nifty mirror inside, along with a brush that I wouldn’t use in a million years but hey. It has come in useful as a keyboard de fluffer!

True Match

Another hugely talked about product in the blogging/YouTube community is the Suqqu Eyebrow Liquid Pen. I have use mine to the very end and I’m currently waiting on my nest Selfridges trip where I’m going to stock up. It’s brilliant for me as it’s waterproof. Not that I swim in make-up, but I have such sparse brows with so many completely bare patches that I need something that’s going to fare well when only having skin to adhere to rather than hair. Shade wise, I use 01 which is called Green. Very misleading but what it does mean is that, with it;s very slightly green/grey undertone it completely cuts out the chances of it kicking out any redness which I hate in brows. A super fine tipped pen, it helps create the illusion of hair rather than a block of colour. I use this alongside my RMK brow pencil. Love it!

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Sometimes you find a product that you think, how come not ALL products are as good as this? Avon Supershock Gel Liner is one of those. I cannot fathom Avon can retail this at £6 and other brands can charge anything up to £20 for a liner than it no where near a patch on this? The most highly pigmented Black liner I’ve ever used. Excellent for the waterline as it’s so long lasting. This is one of those products I’ve bought back ups of, both for myself and for my kit. There are other shades available, I just haven’t tried them yet.

Avon Supershock

On one of my many Boots jaunts, I found myself looking for a pink Lip Pencil. After swatching my hands to oblivion, I feel for the Rimmel Exaggerate Automatic Lip Liner in East end Snob. Of which I am neither. But this has the longevity of a tattoo! I’m currently enjoying using this all over my lips and then slicking on some lip balm. (Apology for the lack of photo and the use of stock photos on all the others, I’m currently sans camera which is a bit lame)

Lastly, my hair loves.

If you have never seen a photo of my, I have super curly, dry hair. Over a year ago, I discovered the joys of a system called No-Poo. It sounds rather rude but it in fact means that I no longer use Shampoo in my hair. Shampoo often contains drying detergent-like ingredients which for curly hair are a real no no. So I have switched to using solely products that are SLF and Silicon Free. By removing Silicon from the equation, I have no product build up in my hair. Therefore, I have nothing that requires shampoo to remove.

My conditioner is the Naked Hydrating Conditioner for Normal to dry hair. I simply wet my hair and take this through with a wide tooth comb, leave for 3 minutes and rinse. I also do a ‘Co-wash’ with this which means I use a small amount and massage through as if it were shampoo, rinse and then use it again to condition. They do also have a Curly hair shampoo and conditioner range but I can never find it in my beloved Boots?!

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My styling product is the Naked Gorgeous Curls Taming Cream that I mix in with one pump of Naked Extra Shiny Finishing Serum. These 2 products combined give me a better curl and finish than my old love Frizz-ease. Plus they last 5 times as long and are almost always on some kind of offer.

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Phew. This has been one looong post! Thank-you for reading it to the end!

Any questions or comments, please feel free.

Until next time

Katy xx

Love my Dress–An Article about Moi!

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Hello All!

Long time no blog, I know.

I’m going to be getting back in the swing of things very soon and boy oh boy, have I done some beautiful weddings and breath-taking shoots since I last posted. There are going to be some seriously amazing images coming your way.

Until then, I was to show you a little piece that I had written up on the fantastic wedding blog- Love my Dress. I recently became a sponsor and for any brides to be planning their weddings, please check it out. It’s a wealth of knowledge. Oh and I’m on it!

Click here to read the article

Until next time

Katy x

Elf Cream Liners

Hi All,

I found ELF (Eyes Lips Face) make-up quite late in the game, having worked for so long for a high end artistry brand, I think these gems were so far out of my radar they just passed me by! But I’m glad I’ve found them now!

These were bought a few months ago now and I wanted to get them into my kit and give them a really good thorough testing before I commented on them. I didn’t feel that just using them on myself would do them justice.  I have the kind of eyelids that things just stay on, I’m suppose I’m lucky that way. So I wouldn’t really be able to comment on its longevity.

Instead, I tried them out on my gorgeous clients. This way, I was able to get creative with them and use them on top of different textures, mix them, use different brushes with them etc.

My over all opinion of them is that I love them. Not every colour performs as well and I’ve definitely got my favourites already.

I’ve swatched the 6 that I have – The first picture is without flash and the second with flash as I felt that the first picture didn’t do the shades justice enough.

From Left- Right the shades are – Ivory, Coffee, Metallic Olive, Plum Purple, Midnight and along the bottom, Gunmetal.

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I ordered all 6 at the same time and my first impressions are almost the same as they are now after 6 weeks or so of using them.

  • Ivory – I really didn’t expect this to be as sheer as it is, or to have any shimmer in to be honest. I haven’t found a use for it as I think I would if it was a cream finish and had more pigment. I’d use it more as a base for other shadows to pop the colour out if it were.
  • Coffee – This is a fantastic texture. Really intensely pigmented and creamy. One swipe through the product loads enough on the brush for a good sweep. Love it.
  • Metallic Olive – Another winner for me. Metallic enough to keep it interesting but not so much that it reflects badly in photos.
  • Plum Purple – Again, I’m a little bit in love with this one. This gets pulled out of my kit on a very regular basis!
  • Midnight – Disappointing pigment in this one. I swiped only once on my hand here and it really hardly showed up so I re-applied another layer. This is the only shade I’ve had to do that with.
  • Gunmetal – This is almost identical is usability and finish as the Metallic Olive. Another great shade. If I’m nit-picking, I’d ask for it to be 10% darker, but I simply blend a black kohl pencil closer to the roots to achieve that. No problem!

Here are a couple of examples of where I’ve used it in shoots –

On Laura, I used the Plus Purple both along the top in a thick sweep and also on the bottom lashes. 5239544052_dbb39964a5_z

On Emma I used the Gunmetal alongside a Bronze pigment for contrast. I deepened it at the lash line with Black Kohl.Emma 1 RS

On the beautiful Teresa, I took the Metallic Olive along the top lash line and also, blended it in through the bottom lashes.DSC_2755 1.jpg

 

I didn’t order the Black shade as I already have a Black Gel Liner that I’m really very happy with so maybe I’ll give it a go next time.

These retail at £3.50 which is a fantastic price point! It does make me wonder how the larger brands can charge SO much? I’d like to see some additional shades such as a great punchy Burgundy and a brighter, denser Blue.

For make-up artists who are fed up of going through expensive Gel Liners so quickly (all Gel Liners are prone to drying out, especially if you fly with your kit) these are well worth a go.  For non MUA’s, for £3.50, these are a good addition to your make-up collection. It may take a while to find your favourite brush to use but the end result is a liner that stays put all day. And all night!

I hope this has been helpful?

I Love Make-up (Christmas Eve FOTD)

Hi All,

As I got ready for a bit of last minute shopping on Christmas Eve, it became very apparent. I am not able to simply throw a wee bit of make-up on my face and rush out the door. Much to my husbands frustration I’m sure!

He never moans, I’m very lucky, he has developed a good sense of what he calls ‘actual time’ and puts himself to use doing something else whilst I plod around getting ready. Slowly. He knows if I say-

“I’ll be ready in ten, let me just chuck some make-up on”, that he has a good 35-40 minutes to check his facebook, empty the bins, watch an episode of Dexter etc. You get my drift.

It’s not that I’m vain, far from it! I agonise about posting my own face up on my blog, it’s not something I relish, trust me. It simply stems from my love of make-up. I find applying make-up relaxing and fun. I never tire of the process. Especially as, naturally I’m quite undefined in my features and unsymmetrical, so the balance and definition it gives me makes me feel better. Isn’t that what make-up is for?

This particular look came about when I hurriedly dipped my brush into my Bourjois Brun Somptueux 74 Eyeshadow to give a little definition to my outer corners but I had not wiped the colour off from yesterday (I know, BAD make-up artist!) and I ended up with a hybrid shade of the Brown and another Bourjois shade- my beloved Ombre Stretch in a shade that I believe was Limited Edition and the name has worn off but it’s a super rich Purple Plum shade. So what was going to be a very monotone, purely for definition reasons day look then got developed into a strong, black water-lined smoky eye. Oh well. I’m sure the sales assistant in Next appreciated the effort I’d made.

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CE eye

Please pardon the sinister look of the first photo, I really wasn’t feeling murderous, contrary to what my eyes are conveying!

The products I used were as follows –

  • Face Atelier Foundation in Ivory (mixed with my Clarins Ultra Matte Fluid) and applied with fingers.
  • Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage in SC1 for blemishes and Secret Concealer in 1 under my eyes.
  • No17 Oil Control Loose Powder pressed in with a powder puff mainly down my t-zone.
  • Edward Bess Bronzer in Daydream on the high points of my face
  • Laura Mercier Cheek Colour in Rose Petal.
  • Benefit Babe Cake used as Tight-line between my lashes
  • Bourjois Brun Somtueux 74 mixed with the mystery Ombre Stretch shadow.
  • Avon Supershock Gel Liner Pencil in Black (Review to come)
  • Suqqu Waterproof Brow Pen in 01 Green (I know, Green?! Review to come which will explain more)
  • Laura Mercier Brow Powder in Deep Blonde just to tweak the colour
  • Rimmel Volume Flash Mascara in Extreme Black
  • Rouge Bunny Rouge Gleaming Temptations Lip Gloss in Birthday Suit.

Overall, I liked my make-up that day. Was it totally inappropriate for stressful shopping in Stevenage Town Centre, absolutely! Did it bother me? Nope. Will I ever be one of those girls who can leave the house in under 5 minutes? Not a chance in hell.

So until the day comes that I bore of playing with make-up, I shall continue to get up an hour earlier than everyone else and have my make-up time in peace.
Yours, wearing false lashes to clean the kitchen (kidding)