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Whats in my personal make-up bag (this week)

Blog - 16th Jul 2012 - Comments - Read →

Referencing my recent 'whats in my friends lip gloss heavy bag' post, there was a "tell us what YOU carry in your handbag" comment on my Facebook wall yesterday (thank you Linda Forman Abrahams).

I usually do my make up in the car on the way to work (unless I'm driving myself in which case I dont!). I carry foundation, concealer, eyebrow powder kit, wipes for hands, nude lip pencil, sheer lipstick, cream blush, eyelash curlers, mascara and powder. Sometimes if I have meetings or need extra help, I take a 'neutrals' eye shadow quad in there too. Add to that some clean brushes which I appropriate from the pro kit for the day - a foundation brush, angled eyebrow, tiny eyeliner one for concealing and a bushy eye brush if I'm taking an eye palette. First thing in the morning I only put a light  touch of foundation (around my chin), concealer and curl my eyelashes and then gradually build up to the other stuff around mid morning/lunchtime.

One beauty editor friend once commented that I arrive on a shoot with a bare face and leave fully made up. It's true, I feel like my face grows into make-up as the day wears on. Often my make-up bag gets too full because I swipe things that take my fancy from the pro kit and then forget to 'pay them back'. Other times, I'm testing out new products to see if they are kit worthy. I'm currently using this very nifty Chanel make-up bag which has a convienient zip along the bottom which means it can transform from a generously medium size to enormous in seconds. Every now and again I have a big clear out and switch to a more modestly sized bag for the sake of my shoulders.

Despite it all being owned by me, I always feel like I'm stealing when I borrow things from my pro kit. Occasionally when on a big shoot Jessie will say "I cant find the ****** (something important in the kit), did you take it for your personal bag?" and I will reply rather sheepishly "oh god yes, I borrowed it for a night out". I think this attitude is probably a throw back to the days when I was starting out and couldn't afford more than one of the essentially fabulous items and even though today I have several...old habits die hard.

If I wasn't a make-up artist and didnt have the pro kit dilemma, I think its safe to say I would carry around the most enormous make-up bag with at least 10+ mascaras concealed in various zipped compartments.

In my bag this week I have:

A secret, and as yet unrealeased, cream blusher I'm testing out.

Kevyn Aucoin - Mascara in Pitch Black (very unusual for me to only have one on the go I'll admit)

Ole Henrikson - Ultimate Lift Eye Gel Roll On (been trying this de-puffing roll on for a week now to see if it helps morning face, so far I like it)

Zebra Stripped Nail File - a nail file is essential

Bourjois - Healthy Mix Foundation - 53

Clinique - Airbrush Concealer - 04

Laura Mercier - Secret Camouflage - SC3

No7 - Perfect Lips Liner - Nude

Shu Uemura - Eyelash Curlers

Suqqu - Balancing Eyebrow Powder

Une - Sheer Lips Balm - SO3

Watch this video

Bronze Contour & Highlighter Look

Every since I first met Claire I wanted to do a rich bronzey, contoured look on her. A look that involved simply bringing out her bone structure in a tanned and healthy looking way. The transformative effect of sculpting and highlighting a face is something that always blows me away .... the power of make-up!

Lisa Loves Looking in make-up bags!

Blog - 6th Jul 2012 - Comments - Read →

When I was at work today, a non make-up artist friend told me she desperately needed a new lip gloss as she was running out. I know she likes bright red/pinks so I asked to have a look in her make-up bag to see her current one. Lo and behold I found all of these lip products! As a make-up addict myself I love nosing around make-up bags as you unearth all kinds of facinating things and discover a lot about a person. I hadnt realized the girl in question was such a closet hoarder as she admitted to having a load more glosses of more or less the same colour at home! Three of the Mac glosses in her bag today were almost identical but shes still on a quest to get another as soon as she can.

Once when I was at the Chanel studio in Paris their creative director Peter Phillips did exactly the same thing to me. I nearly died when he pulled out a long since discontinued eyeshadow palette which I had clumsily stuck back together with black gaffer tape after smashing the lid - that was my pay back for all my years of snooping into other peoples bags.

When filming Ten Years Younger I did a feature stopping women in the cosmetic deparment of a store to ask if I could have a rumage through their make-up. I found the results absolutely riveting. The two things that really stood out were filthy bags and brushes and lots of women carrying around (in very heavy bags) multiple items of almost exactly the same shade. 

Click here to see inside some of the make-up bags I managed to unearth!

Are you a closet hoarder or a non washer of sponges & brushes? Or do you prefer to have your make-up bag super organised and squeaky clean? Do tell!

Super Quick Smokey Eyes

Blog - 2nd Jul 2012 - Comments - Read →

To go with my monthly column, I have a brand new two minute video on Elle today. This time it's how to achieve fabulous & quick smokey eyes. This is my favourite technique for fool-proof easy smokey eyes with minimal product. Have a look and give it a go!

Watch this video

Grown Up Girly Look

Video - 23rd Jun 2012 - Views - Comments - Watch →

I wasn't sure what to call this look, so thanks to everyone on Facebook for the great suggestions. This glamourous look with pinks and purples could be perfect for a date, wedding, prom or any special occasion. Pretty and girly, but with a grown up feel.

For advice on how to apply full strip eyelashes click here.

Gallery Update - Two Kate Editorials

Blog - 16th Jun 2012 - Comments 121 - Read →

Two very different cover stories I did with Kate Winslet. The look and feel of the Chinese Elle pictures were bright and colourful with a red dress chosen for the cover. The make-up style I felt suited this style best was a super clean, polished look with bright eyes and classic, simple peachy warm tones for eyes, lips and cheeks. I kept the same make-up throughout the shoot except for the red dresss cover shot when I tweaked the lip tone to a more tomato-ey red stain. The look and feel of the Vanity Fair shoot was all together darker, grittier and more edgy. For this I chose a dark 'lived in ' smokey eye and super contoured look with very neutral lip. 

Downton Abbey's Jessica Brown Findlay - Red Carpet

Blog - 8th Jun 2012 - Comments 79 - Read →

Last week, I was lucky enough to attend one of the hot ticket events of the year - the Glamour magazine Women of the Year awards. But before I could get myself ready, I had the pleasure of making up the stunningly beautiful Jessica Brown Findlay who plays Lady Sybil Crawley in the television series Downtown Abbey.

Anyone who knows me knows that I’m a huge Downtown fan, and so I was really excited to meet Jessica. Before the event, her stylist sent me a picture of the lovely nude coloured Valentino dress that she was planning to wear, she thought that a natural approach to hair and make-up on the night would be best and I completely agreed.

Jessica is an absolutely charming, as well as gorgeous, girl. Her face would suit lots of different make-up looks, but I felt that a fresh, pinkish make-up look would not only compliment the soft, rose-printed dress but would also be in keeping with Jessica’s own personal style.

I started by applying Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua foundation all over to give a fresh, glowy base. A thin layer of Make Up Forever HD Cream Blush in Light Rosewood followed by a wash of Chanel Blush Horizon de Chanel on the cheeks after powder gave a natural, pretty flush.

For the eyes, I used Tom Ford’s Eye Colour Quad in Cocoa Mirage (a mixture of subtle smoky browns and creams) with a flick of back gel liner and a good few coats of Eyeko Skinny mascara in Black topped off with softly defined brows (I love her brows!).

Finally, I used my new favourite lip product, YSL’s Rouge Pur Couture Glossy Stain in No.17, a fresh lilac-pink, to finish off Jessica’s naturally, pretty make-up look. With her stunning outfit and loose, waved hair, I hope you’ll agree that she looked every inch the modern 23 year-old starlet!

It was a great night with lots of fun to be had people watching all of the uber-glamorous guests and Graham Norton, who compered the evening, was hilarious! Jessica walked away with the award for 'Best TV Actress of the Year' so massive congratualtions to her.

I hope you like the look – it’s one that’s super-easy to achieve yourself and perfect for any summer parties you have coming up where you don’t want to look too ‘done’.

Jessica's Hair was styled by Tracie Cant at Premier Hair and Make Up

Styling by Kerry Nixon.

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