Feb 282014

WOW! Would be the short and sweet version of my 1st New York Fashion Week experience, however, I’m sure you’d prefer actual details of my trip. LOL! :-)

NYC Selfie at the Park with Snow 1 I had to take selfies with the snow in the background because before this trip, I’d never been in real snow. :-)NYC Selfie in the park with snow 2 By the way, I’m wearing MAC Lipstick in Sin. It’s a Pro color.  It lasted all day! Like, for real. I took it off before I went to sleep that night.  I tried it on at the MAC Pro Soho store and kept it on.

MAC Pro Selfie

I almost got it, but it’s so close to Diva.  I really couldn’t justify buying it. Here are swatches below.  The Beauty Blogger in me couldn’t resist doing a product review while I was in NYC. LOL! :-)MAC Sin Lipstick Label

MAC Sin vs Diva Hand Swatches

Me in front of the MAC Pro Sign I was on my way to work on a photoshoot with UK Designer Blessed Zion. This explains why I’m at the store with my Zuca and my bag. You know, just in case you were wondering.  Ha ha ha! :-P

Now back to talking about New York Fashion Week. I was blessed to be able to work on 4 fashion shows while in NYC. I almost did 5, but due to the snow on Sunday, the promoter felt it would be best to cancel it. So we did a photoshoot instead.

The 1st show I worked on was on 2/4/14. I assisted Celeb Makeup Artist AJ Crimson who was the Key for the Michael Bastian Show. It was a Mens Wear show and I had a great time. AJ Crimson Michael Bastian TeamAbove is a picture of the AJ Crimson Glam Squad for the Michael Bastian Show. Here are a few behind the scenes shots I took. 2014-02-04 13.02.52The hair and makeup team getting prepared for the models to come in.
2014-02-04 13.00.31Above is my makeup station set up. :-) Below is a picture of the models, and designer team getting the guys ready for the runway
2014-02-04 15.43.55

Muji was one of the sponsors for the makeup team.  They provided these amazing masks for skin prep.  I forgot to take a picture of them, but they’re really small; like the size of a nickle.  Once you wet them, they expand and you just peel it a part and place it on the face for a few minutes.  It provides instant hydration to the skin and makes it smooth and ready for makeup.   Below is a picture of AJ showing us how to use the Muji Masks.2014-02-04 13.12.452014-02-04 13.14.342014-02-04 13.14.46After the time is up for the mask, he sprayed Caudalie Beauty Elixir (also one of the sponsors for the Makeup Team). Then he perfected the skin with his AJ Crimson Creme Foundation
2014-02-04 13.18.20 Here are a couple of the looks from the show below.

Behind the scenes at the Michael Bastian NYFW 2014 show

Behind the scenes at the Michael Bastian NYFW 2014 show

2014-02-04 15.44.10

Michael Bastian NYFW Behind the Scenes

Michael Bastian NYFW Behind the Scenes

I have so much to share with you all. It’s hard for me to know when to stop so that I don’t overload you in one post.  I’m still trying to decide just how many parts I’m going to break up this series into.  In the meantime, I’ll stop here for the 1st part.  Make sure to stay tuned to find out more about my 1st experience working at NYFW!!! :-)

Oct 012013

DSCF0437I was so happy to be invited to attend the Beauty Blogger Preview for The Makeup Show Orlando!!! This is an exclusive event that occurs the evening before The Makeup Show starts to give Beauty Bloggers a heads up on what to look for and what products would be great to review.

DSCF0432It was held in the Orlando Room, which is the same nice ballroom that the keynote speakers were in for the next 2 days.

DSCF0433James Vincent gave a detailed introduction of The Makeup Show and explained why he likes the products that were provided for the Beauty Bloggers to review.  He informed us that there were over 100 vendors in attendance.  He let us know that Orlando is the warmest location for The Makeup Show (literally and figuratively). Because it’s smaller, attendees get to really interact with the business owners, and makeup artists get more time to truly network and build relationships with people. I totally agree with this. I attended the 1st one last year and I made a lot of good connections. A benefit of going to a smaller venue is it’s more intimate, you’re not rushed, and you don’t have to squeeze through everyone to make it down the aisle. :-)

He told us what to expect fro The Makeup Show Orlando.

  • Education
  • Networking opportunities
  • Products at pro discounted rates to help build your kit

DSCF0439Shout out to MUA Bethany Townes who did a fantastic job of helping all of the speakers set up.

Sharon (Mama Makeup) Gault graced us with her presence. She was one of the upcoming Keynote Speakers. I caught a picture of her walking in as James Vincent introduced her. DSCF0438One of the first products he talked about was the Lait-Creme Concentre  Nourishing moisturizer from Embryolisse. For years I’ve heard professional makeup artists rave about this brand. I’m excited to review this product. This cream is for all skin types and has multiple uses.


 We received cool hair ties from The Science of Fabulous.

2013-09-27 18.22.41

 We received mascara from Ellis Faas. I’ve recently heard great things about this brand. This booth was actually right next to the AJ Crimson booth that I worked at. Their packaging is awesome.

 James Vincent spoke so highly of this mascara. I had to take it out and get a closer look. :-)

James Vincent spoke so highly of this mascara. I had to take it out and get a closer look. :-)

Ellis Faas Booth

2013-09-28 15.54.57Above is a picture of David from the Ellis Faas Booth. They were right next to the AJ Crimson booth that I worked at. He was a ball of energy! Yes, those bullet looking pieces have makeup inside. Ha ha! :-)

Stila gave the Beauty Bloggers a Stay All Day Prime & Anti-Shine Balm. You know I’m super excited to try this due to me always being on the search for oil-controlling products. James V holding Stila balm 1James V holding the stila balm 2

We received a brush from the new Artisan brush collection from Makeup Forever. Woo Hoo!James V holding MUFE Brushes MUFE Brush from BBlogger Preview *Sorry some of these pics are blurry.   I was trying to take notes, listen, and hurry & take a pictures with my phone. Ha ha! I need to improve my multi-tasking skills.* :-D

Yay! We received the new NARS Eye Paint. My bag had the color Tatar. 2013-09-27 18.33.26 We received a package of Crown Brush goodies that included powder puffs, Eye liner, tweezers.  James said even though he loves brushes, it’s important to still use powder puffs, especially if you are trying to press product into the skin without any traces of brush strokes for HD. Powder Puffs also do a better job of setting powder for a long lasting effect. James V holding Crown Brush Goodies

Below James is holding a limited edition Makeup Forever Palette he put together that has neutral colors that work on everyone.


He also put together a special makeup artist kit with Makeup Forever products that are essentials for a freelance makeup artist. This is exclusive to The Makeup Show Orlando.


Below I’m with fellow Beauty Blogger Khia of Killer Lipgloss! So happy to have met her. I’ve followed her blog for a couple of years as well as on different social media outlets.  I spotted her while we were waiting to check in to the Beauty Blogger Preview event. I was drawn to her gorgeous purple lips. I walked over and realized who she was and was so happy. She’s super cool and fun to hang with. :-)

Beauty By LeRenda and Killer Lipgloss BBlogger Preview

Below is everything the Beauty Bloggers received in our swag bag. I’m truly grateful for this opportunity.
2013-09-28 00.55.03

Jan 202013

 I’m always experimenting with inexpensive products to see what alternatives I can recommend to my readers and clients.  I recently purchased four eyeshadows and two more foundation sticks from Black Opal.Black Opal Purchase Now if you’ve been following me or if you’ve ever had a conversation about makeup with me you already know how much I adore Black Opal Foundation Sticks.  They’re an absolute staple for my personal use as well as my professional kit.  HOWEVER, I was not pleased at all with their Oil Blocking Powder. Click here on my thoughts.  It was a risk when I decided to try these new eyeshadows.Black Opal EyeshadowsHere’s the look I created with these colors. Even though they’re pretty bold, I wanted a softer effect.  Now, it’s very important for me to point out that I did NOT use a primer or base before applying the Black Opal eyeshadows.  I wanted to see exactly how pigmented they were. I have to say I was very pleased with the results.  I didn’t have to build up the color a whole lot either.  Quite impressive for $5.LOTD 1-19-13 Close eye picI decided to try them out with some other inexpensive products such as Elf, NYX, and Cover Girl Queen Collection to complete my look. Below is everything I used.  Even my brushes were inexpensive.  They’re a combo of Coastal Scents and Crown Brush. :-)LOTD 1-19-13 makeupNow granted I did still incorporate some MAC, Clinique and NARS but overall my look was pretty cheap. LOTD 1-19-13 Looking to leftLOTD 1-19-13 Looking StraightSo to answer the question “What Happens when you use inexpensive products?” My answer after using these would be that you get great results.

I’m a firm believer that you don’t have to spend a lot of money to achieve a pretty makeup look.  This look validates my belief that technique and quality trump prices. ;-p
Do you only use expensive products or do you venture out and try drugstore brands?

Jan 202013

It’s always nice to go through your old makeup stash and find a treasure.  While organizing my old lipsticks, I came across a bunch of Clinique lipsticks.  One in particular stood out to me and put and instant smile on my face.  Metallic Sand. Metallic Sand Collage

I worked for Clinique for about 2 1/2 yrs before I began working for MAC. I can’t tell you how many tubes of Metallic Sand lipstick I went through and how many I sold, but there were lots.  It’s such a gorgeous color and it’s very versatile.  Metallic Sand lipstickI could put this color on just about anyone regardless of age or color and it worked well.  It’s also easy to use with different color eye shadows and blushes.  Metallic Sand on lips up closeMetallic Sand is a great neutral color and can be blended with an array of lip liners.  Below, I blended it with MAC Plum lip pencil.Metallic Sand with Plum PencilMetallic Sand and Plum SwatchMetallic Sand applied to bottom lipMetallic Sand and Plum applied to TopMetallic Sand with Plum on lipsI’m probably going to wear this combo a lot for the next couple of days.  I can’t believe I forgot all about it.  Have you ever found a lipstick from a while ago and fell back in love with it?

Dec 132012
Keynote Speaker AJ Crimson on stage

Keynote Speaker AJ Crimson on stage

Celebrity Make Up Artist AJ Crimson was a keynote speaker on Day 2 of The Makeup Show Orlando. Hey gave great advice about working as a freelance makeup artist and how to really market your brand.  He has an agency called Blackboard Group and talked about how he would love to see the makeup community share more and work together.AJ Crimson Keynote speech

AJ stressed the importance of MUAs taking an active role in their personal brands and when working on photoshoots.  He encouraged us to stop undercutting ourselves and re-evaluate what’s working vs. what’s not.  For MUAs transitioning from retail, he urged us to stop thinking about makeup like you do when working at the counter.  Most products have multiple uses and it’s not always required to use so many different things to achieve a look. For example, you don’t always need a separate concealer as well as a foundation.  If you use a full coverage cream foundation, it can work as a concealer.  Sometimes, those extra products are just selling points. This tip is helpful when building a kit.  You can save money by investing in multi-purpose products.

AJ Crimson Demo 1AJ Crimson Demo 2AJ also did a makeup demo to promote his brand new Creme Foundation line.  He has 8 shades that were hand mixed and according to him were made with a lot of love. ;-p

DSCF6687I got a chance to talk to AJ.  He’s really passionate about makeup and having a product that’s easy to use on a diverse clientele.  His creme foundations as well as his lipglosses can work on anyone.  He had a booth set up in the vendors hall as well. Where he and his staff did demos and allowed us to test out his products.AJ Crimson Booth 2AJ Crimson BoothAJ Crimson Booth DemoAJ Crimson Booth Demo 2 AJ Crimson Booth George applying lipgloss

I wasn’t able to get all 8, but I did get three of them: 2 which is a light shade,  4 which is a medium shade, and 8 which is a dark shade so that I can mix them to work with my clients.

AJ Crimson Creme Foundation

I used this foundation for the 1st time on my fellow Houston Fashion Blogger Shasie.  I did her makeup last week for our Holiday Party.  I’m totally in love this foundation.  A little goes a long way.  Even though it’s a cream, it’s very light weight.  Shasie said it felt really good on her skin and she got lots of compliments.  I’d highly recommend this makeup!! Shasie b4 and after makeoverBelow is a picture of the two of us at our Houston Fashion Blogger Holiday Party sponsored by Saks. 380364_432160143504520_1388214687_n

You can purchase these incredible foundations at AJCrimson.com



Oct 282012

Day 2 of the Make Up For Ever Pro Road Show was just as good as day one.  The first class of the day was Red Carpet Beauty facilitated by Celebrity Makeup  Artist Patrick Eichler. He was introduced by Mariel Guay of Make Up Forever.

In the above picture, Patrick is teaching us that orange and pink colors work really well as blushes either alone or mixing them.  They tend to be universal. 

Above he is applying MUFE Smokey Lash MascaraHere Patrick is showing us where he will Highlight/Contour

These are the finished looks below

The 2nd class of the day was HD For All facilitated by Joy Hom.

Joy shared with us the techniques she uses when applying makeup that will be recorded in High Definition.  Unfortunately, I got to this class late so I don’t have a lot of pictures to share. :-(

Joy stressed the importance of prepping the skin and keeping in mind that less is more when working in HD.  You have to go softer with colors and texture because it will be amplified with the HD lens   Stay away from frosty textures and dark colors if possible because they will be extremely dramatic.  She also said it’s important to pay attention to your application.  Be ware of the strokes and finger prints that may be left on the skin.

Above is the finished look that Joy created with HD techniques.

Above is Michael DeVellis introducing Lija Stewart who taught the 3rd class of the day titled The Beauty and Business of Bridal.  The class served two purposes.  Lijah had a Q&A portion at the beginning then she did an application towards the end.  The Q& A portion was extremely helpful.  She did a terrific job in answering questions about how to deal with issues when working with brides and their bridal parties.  I’m very happy I attended this class.

First Lijah prepped the skin with HD Primer. 

Then she applied concealer under the eyes to highlight the area.Next she contoured the model’s cheeks to bring more dimension to her faceLijah believes in taking care of the skin first, so she did all of the face work before the eyes.  In the above picture she’s working to give the bride a soft smokey eye.

Here are the finished looks below. 

Below are Lijah and I.  I know I’ve already talked about how awesome Lijah is in my 1st post about my MUFE Pro Road Show Dallas experience, however I just wanted to reiterate just how amazing she really is as both an artist as well as a facilitator   She teaches the type of class that keeps you wanting more.  When you get to the end, you’re like “awww man, it’s over”.  I’m thrilled that she’ll be facilitating a couple of classes at The Makeup Show Orlando.  :-)

As I mentioned in the Day One experience of the Pro Road Show, Michael DeVellis stated there were 3 goals of this weekend. At the end of day 2, we completed the 3rd goal which was to network.  Because Make Up For Ever is so totally awesome, they had a special Meet and Greet Social Cocktail event for all of the attendees at the MUFE Store in Dallas North Park Mall.  It was after hours and pretty much open exclusively for us.  How cool is that???  We had the opportunity to not only network with one another, but also MUFE staff.

 Above is a picture of me with Patrick Eichler during the Pro Social event.