Hi! My name is Nikki and I’m a professional makeup artist based in Los Angeles. It is such a pleasure to do a post for you guys on Sarah’s blog! I know she is so passionate about influencing women to look and feel their best, even finding the right products for them. Far too often there are trends in the beauty world that are merely trends; here today and gone tomorrow. There are products that work for some and not for others. Being that I do makeup all day long for a living, whether on a TV or movie, a special event, photo shoot, or working for one of my accounts at the counter, I’m going to share some of my knowledge and experience.
Let’s start with skin.
I know I’m speaking to a wide audience with vastly different skin concerns so just bare with me. Let’s go ahead and bust a myth.
Myth- “If you have oily skin, stay away from oil”.
Oil is actually very healing, particularly argon oil. I personally have oily/sensitive/combination skin and use 100% argon oil sparingly at night to heal my skin of dark spots and marks. I also use it as a preventative for aging. Before there was a variety of skincare options at the department stores, 50 years ago women like my grandma used baby oil on their faces as nightly treatment. My grandma is 88 years old and has not a wrinkle on her skin! Don’t get me wrong, I don’t know that I’d go ahead and lather on baby oil, but I do prefer Josie Maran’s 100% Argon Oil in 5 fl oz from the grab-and-go bins at Sephora for $8.
A very big-named makeup artist I was working with last Tuesday on a Hallmark movie (who has a resume as long as my legs) laughed at the guy sitting in her chair for using oil-free moisturizer! He was the lead and she totally schooled him. I definitely did NOT want to be him!:)
The short of it- not all oils are created equal. There are good oils for the skin, even necessary.
Let’s move onto foundations.
So assuming that you are looking to purchase a foundation for an event and you need it to last during the day or throughout the night, you’re going to need a long-wear foundation. I don’t wear these on a daily basis but for times when I need that extra coverage, I reach for my Bobbi Brown Longwear Foundation. I think this one, Makeup Forever, MAC, and Giorgio Armani looks best for full-coverage on camera but if your looking for the one with both coverage and still relatively nice to your skin, I’d go with Bobbi. It’s great for people with normal to oily skin. If someone has dry skin and I am using this on them I definitely have to moisturize accordingly so that it doesn’t just “sit” on the skin.
My little secret.
After prepping the skin. After perfecting their full coverage. I now have a blank palette. My favorite thing to do (mostly for everybody) is grab a cream blush in a faint coral and paint it lightly on the cheeks with my foundation brush. Just remember, wherever you put the brush first is where the most color is going to go. Because cream blushes tend to be very pigmented I use it lightly, dab it where I need to, and feather out. I cannot tell you how beautifully natural this looks on the skin. You can use MAC, Bobbi Brown, Tarte..... Play around until you find your perfectly faint coral. I use Bobbi’s “Fresh Melon”.
A trick I learned.
I used to assist a really famous makeup artist. She is the queen of the sexy look. Watching the products she would use and her technique was a priceless and rare education as her assistant. Her tricks are endless. The one thing I will touch on (for the mere fact that this can be for anyone) is how she put on false lashes.
First, the three sets of lashes I would always have to pick up from the beauty store were:
Usually she would pair two of these on the client and was very careful in removing the lashes with the adhesive from the container. You want to keep the same shape of the lash so pull from the center with your thumb as opposed to “peeling” off from one end to the other.
Secondly, you have to measure. It’s okay to not use the full lash. Just cut a tiny bit off the ends so it fits your eye.
Lastly when applying the glue, take some in a quarter of the way to the synthetic hairs and apply, of course, with your tweezers.
After you get the first set on you can the apply the Demi’s on top. Now you have your perfect full lash look that fits YOU.
So those are just a couple of tricks out of my makeup box:)
I really feel that if you are wanting to be your own makeup artist or if your wanting to do this professionally, don’t feel like all of your products need to be expensive. You can make do with anything, and I’ve seen it! I’ve had to take a rabbit out of a hat sometimes and am astonished when I made something work. I truly believe every woman is beautiful. Every woman can be her own makeup artist. Have fun and just play around with products until you find something you really like!