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Anything Goes Liquid Liner - Dark Olive Green

Video - 31st Oct 2011 - Views - Comments - Watch →

If theres ever been a time to play around and experiment with liquid liner... now is the time. In addition to simply lined upper lashes, classic kitten flick and extreme cat eye there are all kinds of edgy, arty, out-there creative shapes and colours gracing the pages of the glossies (and the runway). Newer formulations, and more importantly packing solutions, mean application is starting to get easier (still takes practice though!).

In the video I mess around with a colour that from the minute I saw I was drawn too. this dark olive green shade felt a bit different and flattering for autumnal nights. In terms of the shape, stick to shapes which suit your eyes and go as edgy as you dare. Remember that most peoples faces are pretty asymetrical especially when in movement (talking etc), so dont beat yourelf up if you dont look like a photoshopped advert when your done. Its more about having fun with make-up. I've tried to include lots of tips for getting a good application, like applying the liner looking straight ahead and keep pulling back to check, so hopefully it'll be a useful one as well.

There are some pretty amazing shades of liquid liner available, so choose a shade you love (with your heart not your head) and start creating! 



Inspiration - Kevyn Aucoin

Blog - 30th Oct 2011 - Comments 79 - Read →

I've been a big fan of Kevyn Aucoin, the make-up artist and the man, for a long time. 2012  marks the 10th anniversary of his untimely death so I really wanted to celebrate his life and work here on my blog.
Kevyn had an incredible career – he worked with legendary celebrities, created iconic images, wrote best-selling books (as well as a regular column for Allure Magazine) and designed his own make-up line which is still going strong and winning awards today; regular viewers of my tutorials will know that I’m a big fan of his line, especially his lash curlers!

Kevyn became interested in make-up at a very young age when he began making up his five year old sister Carla, recreating images he’d seen in magazines and taking pictures of her with an old Polaroid camera. As a young, obviously gay, flamboyant boy with a passion for make-up, growing up in Louisiana in the 60’s and 70’s was extremely difficult but despite being relentlessly teased and bullied he stuck to his dream of becoming a make-up artist. In 1982 he moved to New York where he ambitiously perused his career. Initially working for free with up-and-coming models and photographers, he was discovered by Vogue and championed by their then beauty editor Andrea Quinn Robinson. For the next year and half, he worked closely with legendary photographers Steven Meisel and Irving Penn before shooting his first Vogue cover in 1986 with Cindy Crawford – over the next three years, he did the make-up for 18 more!

Kevyn had a legion of celebrity fans who you can see in the video, beautiful women like Whitney Houston, Andie MacDowell and Nicole Kidman, who once told the New York Times, “When Kevyn did make-up, it was kind of magical; he would look at you and say, ‘Oh, I know exactly what to do.’” He loved to celebrate individuality and really knew how to bring out the beauty in every face he touched…. Often completely transforming his clients with breath taking results.

He was a real style leader and truly innovative. His talent was quickly recognised by Revlon, who hired him in 1993 (aged just 21!) to be the Creative Director of their new prestige make-up line Ultima II. With them, he developed a make-up line called The New Nakeds (later renamed The Nakeds), which broke all of the trends for cosmetic brands at the time as it incorporated make-up for women of all skin tones. He also used a variety of neutral, matte, tones in his face, eye and lip products that went against the best-selling vivid colours of the time but that followed his belief that make-up should be a tool in helping people to discover their natural beauty. Kevin led the way for brands like Bobbi Brown and Laura Mercier, which were also built on this aesthetic.

In a way his most enduring legacy to the world of make up was creating the original ‘Nude’ Look, and particularly his take on a look that I like to call ‘Heavy Natural’. Using neutral tones of mainly matte texture he would sculpt, define, highlight, shape and tone a face, minimizing and maximizing features like no one before him (or since!). It was a look, which has become synonymous with the late 80’s early 90’s and although he moved on from this style later in the 1990’s I think most of us will always remember and admire him for that particular vision of beauty.

Tragically, Kevyn passed away in 2002, not long after he finished working on his own brand, Kevyn Aucoin Beauty, but his legacy definitely lives on. I love how this video portrays all sides of him: his passion, his hard work and dedication, his love for make-up but also his personality as a genuine, caring, charming and funny man who was also very cool and completely un-divaish. I love it when he says that make-up is fun, but he knows that he’s “not saving lives”. I also love how he say's that a celebrity client, like a german shepherd, will sense right away if you are not confident or dont know what you are doing.... he got that right!

Hair dresser Sam McKnight, who worked with Kevyn on some of his earliest Vogue shoots and many times after, recalls - “ He really lived and breathed his work. The thing that made him unique was his ability to transform a face… he had the power to truly transform a face like no-one else. He became great friends with his clients and completely indispensible to them. He could turn an already iconic face into the face of a goddess - he could take it that step further. On top of all that he was just such fun to work with!”

Top beauty journalist Nadine Baggott interviewed Kevyn at the height of his fame - “Kevyn was the first MUA that I actually sought out credits for. I would scan the gutters of the glossies trying to find out what products and techniques that he used. I met him in NYC. He was very handsome, quite shy, modest and brilliant to interview. Before celebrity MUAs, before everyone and their dog had signed to a make-up company, he was doing his own thing, being unique, breaking beauty boundaries and being brilliant. I was in total awe and in fifteen minutes tried to get him to explain and show me his groundbreaking shading and highlighting skills. I was raised on 1940's and 1950's Hollywood films and this man spoke my language. His books should be on every beauty addict's shelf and handled with cotton gloves. The man was a true artist”

When I first started out in make-up I would have loved the chance to assist him and watch him work first hand but I started my career in London and Paris and Kevyn was always based in New York where he was loved by photographers, hair dressers and models alike. When I began working in New York in 1993 I heard such great things about him (particularly from the editors at Allure who I was working with a lot at the time). I hoped to meet him when I worked with Shisiedo in Japan. as he had been creative director of another of Shiseido’s brands Innoui (where he was the first person to design a double concealer palette…surely the inspiration for Laura Merciers Secret Camoflague) but sadly, by the time I started there he had moved on to start work on his own line…. It just wasn’t meant to be.

He really did have an incredible career becoming great friends with many of his childhood idols like Barbara Striesnd and Liza Minelli and did far too many amazing things for me to possibly list or summarise here. If you’re interested in finding out more about him, I urge you to invest in one of his books (nearly time for the Christmas lists!) which truly show off his amazing artistic mind and talent to the max. There is also a posthumous biography by Kerry Diamond,"Kevyn Aucoin - A Beautiful Life" which charts his life from difficult childhood to superstar Make-up Artist featuring quotes from those that knew him best.

I hope you enjoy this short video, it’s always been a favourite of mine. I’d love to know what you think…did any of you have the good fortune to meet him? Do you already have any of his make-up books?

www.kevynaucoin.com

Red Carpet - Joely Richardson

Blog - 27th Oct 2011 - Comments 48 - Read →

On Tuesday night I made up the stunningly beautiful Joely Richardson for the premier of her new film, 'Anonymous', which was being shown in London as part of the BFI London Film Festival. Anonymous looks like a really interesting film, which questions the authenticity of the work of William Shakespeare and asks whether it was actually written by the Elizabethan aristocrat and 17th Earl of Oxford, Edward de Vere, who is played by Rhys Ifans. Joely plays the part of a young Queen Elizabeth 1, a role which she shares with her mother Vanessa Redgrave who stars as the older Elizabeth, so it was a really special film for her.

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My Emma Watson Cover Look

Video - 21st Oct 2011 - Views - Comments - Watch →

So many of you requested a 'get the look' video for my Emma Watson Elle UK cover (shot by uber snapper Rankin) that it just had to be done. It's a really simple look which can easily be adapted (less or more mascara, more pink in the cheeks etc) to suit the individual. The look really focuses on the spiky lashes and super highlighted skin. Emma is undoubtelbly one of the most gorgeous young actresses around, so I must ask you to put your imaginations into overdrive as not only am I old enough to be Emma's mother - but I was also extrememly tired (and a little hungover) when I shot this!

Hope you enjoy it! X

The nail polish I'm wearing by the way is Boots No7 Chritmas Limited Edition 'Glitter Bomb'.

For more comprehensive step by step help on how to apply indiviual fake lashes please see my video about this.

See the original post featuring the Emma Watson pictures with full credits here.

Lisa Loves - Neom

Blog - 13th Oct 2011 - Comments 21 - Read →

Diptique has always been my default candle choice - especially when buying gifts for friends - but recently I’ve been trying to branch out and one of my best new discoveries is Neom.

I’ve been using them for a while now and have absolutely fallen in love! They’re made from a blend of vegetable waxes and pure essential oils, so are completely organic and smell absolutely divine (my current favourite is the 'Sensuous' Home candle with Ylang Ylang, Frankincense and Patchouli essential oils... perfect for cosy autumnal evenings). The candles are densely packed with essential oils so as they burn they work as a therapeutic aromatherapy treatment to relax and de-stress tired bodies and minds - transforming your living room into a mini-spa!

I was really intrigued to find out more about the brand and saw that as well as candles Neom also make room mists, reed diffusers and have recently branched out into bath and body products. My current favourite thing from the new range is their organic body oil in ‘Refresh’ - a zingy blend of Sicilian lemon and fresh basil. I’ve been slathering myself in this stuff everyday for the past few weeks.

The line was founded by ex-Glamour and InStyle editor Nicola Elliot, who was shocked to learn that the average woman uses over 250 chemicals on her skin every day. She became obsessed with getting our daily chemical count down, and wanted to create a range of completely organic products that not only would help do this, but that were also just as good - if not better - than their synthetic counterparts ...and so Neom was born!

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One Lipstick... Different Ways To Wear It

Video - 11th Oct 2011 - Views - Comments - Watch →

In this film, I use one gorgeous lipstick to show just how versatile this classic product can be. After a decade that saw many of us wearing mainly lip gloss, often with little colour, I am really happy that lipstick has been making a real comeback over the past few years. This video covers all the different ways to apply lipstick well, so that I will not only look great but also last.

Some of you may be thinking “this sounds familiar” and you’d be right as I did make a similar film about 18 months ago, which I absolutely loved but had to take down, as there were some technical problems. I decided to remake it as I felt it was such a good ‘tip heavy’ and useful one! I believe that with one great lipstick and a little know how you can achieve so many different looks and effects. One lipstick can really take you from day to night, work to party even if, as I demonstrate, it’s a very bold or bright shade.

I hope you enjoy watching and are inspired to try out some of the different techniques with your own lipsticks.

 

Gallery Update - Emma Watson for ELLE

Blog - 9th Oct 2011 - Comments 65 - Read →

Back in May I had the pleasure of working with the gorgeous and multi talented Emma Watson on this shoot for Elle magazine. I headed over to Paris for the shoot - always a treat in itself - and was thrilled to be working with the Elle team who are all fabulous and one of my favourite photographers, the talented and very funny Rankin. Elle really wanted to give Emma a different look to the one we know her best for. Romantic and soft along with red carpet glamour were strictly off the agenda, and make up, hair and clothes all had to be young, cool and fun!

When we arrived on set in the morning, we had a huge trying on session, with Emma picking out her favourites from a vast wardrobe of fabulous designer numbers. So much fun and surely every girl’s dream!

For the make up, I kept Emma’s skin very fresh, with lots of shimmery highlighter on her cheeks and some shading under her cheekbones. Lips were dressed in a natural stain and eyelids were super sheeny using eye gloss. Emma’s eyes were definitely the focal point of this look and I used layer upon layer of Lancome Hypnose Doll Eyes Mascara to make the lashes look as if they were almost dripping mascara.This way of doing lashes, despite being quite an editorial look, is great for adding a punky edge to any look. This was all topped of with strong, fierce eyebrows to give a graphic element.

I really loved her hair and nails for the shoot too and as for those black bunny ears...don't we all need a set of those?!!

To see a behind the scenes video from the shoot click here.

To see the rest of the images and read Emmas interview... check out the November issue of UK ELLE Magazine.

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