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Thoughts on Drag Queens and Kim Kardashian

So, I had two interesting gigs last week - one was doing a drag queen in his hotel room and the other was doing a group of bridesmaids for a wedding.  Crazy thing was they wanted nearly identical makeup.  I felt like this is becoming a sort of trend in certain circles and wanted to talk about it.

We'll start with my drag queen.  He was a lovely gent from DC who is new to the drag scene - this was only his second time going out in drag so it was pretty exciting!  He answered  his hotel room door in the dress he was wearing that night, showed me his wig and basically let me go to town.  We did a soft metallic smoky eye (as soft as a metallic smoky eye can be), spirit gummed/eyebrow wax/and sealed his brows so the hairs didn't show through as much, used the "medium" crazy fake lashes (I brought super nuts, medium crazy and mildly bonkers options), used RCMA foundation (which can cover a tatoo), contoured the heck out of his face, blushed and glossed him and he looked like a raven haired JLo.  When I left he was giddy with delight at his new look and couldn't wait to scoot out to meet his friends.

Cut to a wedding I'm working a few days later.  I spent 30 minutes putting one row of Long Individual Lashes (no one wears Longs - they've literally sat in my kit for two years because they are SO long) on a girl all across her lashline and then the next 15 minutes putting a second row of Medium Individual Lashes on top of them to thicken them up.  Her lashes were SERIOUS!!  Flash forward 2 hours - she has gone and put a strip of lashes so thick and long that my drag queen would have vetoed them on TOP OF THE LASHES I ALREADY DID.  Yes.  So here's my thought - are we trying to look like boys who are trying to look like girls? 

Case in point -

I find Kim Kardashian to be STUNNING - and so does the queen in the bottom picture, I'm guessing, since they look like twins - but at a certain point, do we need three rows of eyelashes to feel pretty at a wedding?  Here's what I do like about the looks of these ladies:

I am not always the best at this because I am lazy, but on other people I am a big fan of brow filling!  It helps lift and shape your whole face.  You guys know I'm partial to Joey Healy's brow goodies, http://www.joeyhealy.com/, but just make sure your brow color isn't too red and blends properly.  A good shaping wouldn't hurt either.

If you have ever been in my makeup class you know I am a HUGE fan of the cheek contour - it literally makes you look like you lost five pounds.  My Mineral Cheek Colors, Sunflower and Calla, http://www.erinsfaces.com/, are perfect for this - you want something matte and you're going to suck your cheeks in like a fish.  Follow that curve under your literal cheekbone, stopping under the apple of your cheek, extending to the hair line.  You need to use a highlight, Hibiscus and Tiger Lily from my line, otherwise there's no lift.  The highlight goes bascially in a "C" shape from the outside of the eyebrow down to right under your iris on your ocular bone. 

With these girls it's generally a soft beige or subtle pink lip (mind you, they're wearing liner, lipstick and gloss so there's nothing natural about it!) or a statement red or hot pink.  And if they're wearing a bright color the rest of their makeup is toned way down - clean eyeliner and that tends to be it.

Real drag queens use moisturizer.  And serum.  And eyecream.  And SPF.  And wash their face at night (Jenny Neale, I'm talking to you) and you know Kim Kardashian has a den of little elves who do all of this for her.  So get on it if you're not already.  If you don't use an SPF start NOW - that is the BEST anti-aging thing you could possibly do for yourself. 

So try one of those tips out this week and see how it goes - maybe you'll feel like putting three rows of fake lashes on!  Or maybe not :).


Fashion Week!

Working on Emily at Imitation of Christ

Fashion Week can be really fun and it can also be really challenging.  Fortunately, this season, I got to do two shows that were really enjoyable, had great Keys (makeup artist speak for the lead artist who designs the "look") and great girls next to me (thank you Marie, Nina and Hope!).  I also happened to have really cool models which always helps! 

Just to give you an idea of how it works on our end, we get there with our kits about 2-3 hours before the show.  The Key Artist pulls a model and shows us the look once.  Then we implement it on our own models, go to the Key to check our work, fix anything that needs fixing and find another model who needs makeup.  Sometimes you can literally have a girl in hair/makeup/nails from another show come in five minutes before the show starts and she ends up having 2-3 people working on her hair, 2-3 people doing her makeup and a couple of manicurists fixing her nails.  The poor manicurists have it tough because they generally are sitting at the feet of the models while they're getting their hair/makeup done, regardless of where we are in the timeline.   

Okay, on to the shows - so - Imitation of Christ was at the W Hotel off of Union Square and they did a faux wedding (I think it was faux!) and had a string quartet, wedding singer, the full nine.  The dresses were BEAUTIFUL as was the look that Hourglass' Gina Brooke came up with - silvery blue shimmery eyes, clean skin, flushed pink cheeks and a pink matte mouth.  Here are the lovely girls I got to do ~

Emily, on the left, looks beautiful in her flowers and lace :)

Elizabeth, before and after getting dressed -

More girls I got to work on -

I'm a jerk and can't remember her name, but she's on the right and she's 15 years old and from Europe - can you imagine sending your 15 year old to NYC?  Alone?  Bonkers.  Happens all the time.

Just worked with these girls on their eyes, but isn't their skintone amazing?!  So beautiful.

Here's what we used (all from Hourglass Cosmetics)
*Mineral Primer
*Illusion Tinted Moisturizers
*Lagoon/Prism or Dune Shadows
*Onyx Mascara
*Jet Script Eyeliner
*Petal Blush as cheek and as lip color

Amidst the chaos - Mally Roncal and her assistant, Albee, making up a model

My lovely model

Flash forward to this past Sunday to the Tracy Reese show in the tents at Lincoln Center with Mally Beauty.  This was a SUPER clean look - nearly nude eyelids with a smudged slightly catted out liner, clean skin, super rosy cheeks and a shiny sheer tangerine/pink lip. 

You guys know I love me some Mally Beauty - here's what we used:
*Perfect Prep Shadow Base on the eyes
*Poreless Perfection to set eyes
*Midnight Evercolor Liner on upper inner rim of eye
*Lash Illusion Lash Filler in Black as skinny liner in lashes, slightly catted out
*Sensational Eyeshadow over liner to set
*Volumzing Mascara - my fave!
*Brow Fix - Taupe
*Matte Wand under brow
*Ultimate Performance Foundation
*Cancellation Concealer
*24/7 Professional Blush
*Efforless Airbrush - ridiculously pretty
*Clear Lip Balm
*Be A Peach and Life is Fushia glosses mixed together

And Mally, as always, was crazy generous and sent each artist home with everything listed above and more - we like her :)! 

So that's how it all went down - next, I have to do a drag queen this week and figure out how to use spirit gum and wax to "erase" his brows - I'll let you know how it goes!  xoxo


Makeup Artist Favorite Items

I thought this week I would hand it over to my able-bodied friends, who coincidentally are amazing makeup artists, and ask where must-haves were for their kits.  Here's what they had to say ~ Enjoy! 

"My favorite item in my makeup kit, which I call my "Magic Powder," is the MAC Iridescent Loose shimmer powder called Silver Dusk. I always use it at the end of a makeup application to highlight the inner corners of the eyes, the brow bones, the cheek bones, tip of the nose and the chin. It highlights the features, makes the face appear more chiseled and beautiful by candle light! Also, you can apply it over a very matte foundtion and powder application to restore a dewy finish to the face. Sometimes you have to fake it! And one more thing I love about it, it's so highly pigmented you barely have to use any...I bought mine in 1997 when it came out on the market and it's still full!!! I love it, I love it!! :)" 
Erica Lytton-Miles, 360 Beauty, Inc. ~ www.360beautynyc.com

"I have a lot of favorite beauty products, but I cannot live without the Eye Basics from Laura Mercier.  The texture goes on the lid like velvet, and then it dries down to a highly pigmented, totally matte finish.  It erases any redness or veiny-ness in the eyelids, and creates a perfect canvas for eyeshadow application.  It's like a glue - your shadow won't budge for hours and hours, it's amazing.  They also look great just on their own, if you're doing a clean, neutral, matte eye.  They're so hardcore that after a makeup application, I have a really hard time getting them off my stainless steel palette - so, you know once it's on your skin, it's not going to budge.  The colors I use the most often are Linen and Wheat.  I use them on everyone."
Anni Bruno, Founder & Lead Makeup Artist for NYC Faces ~ www.nycfaces.com

"Being the savvy natural ingredient consumer that I am, I absolutely LOVE 100% Pure Fruit Pigmented Lip & Cheek Tints. They give a youthful natural glow to any skin type without feeling sticky. 100% Pure products are truly 100% Pure-no synthetic chemicals, chemical preservatives, artificial fragrances, artificial colors, harsh detergents or any other unhealthy toxins. Not to mention they are chock full of antioxidants and are Vegan friendly."
Alli McGinnis, Actress, Natural Beauty Junkie and Beauty Blogger ~ allimcginnis.blogspot.com

"I of course can't live without my Joey Healy Luxe Brow Powder in "Corduroy".  This cool, ash taupe has no trace of red and works with a diversity of eyebrow colors from blonde to brunette.  It really is the chameleon of the taupe family and an absolute must for finished brows with just the right touch of soft definition."
Joey Healy, Owner of Joey Healy Eyebrow Shaping ~ www.JoeyHealy.com

"I am obsessed with Cheeks! Skip the Powder and over Bronzed look! Trying using a cream based cheek stain and highlighter. If you are sensitive and/or acne prone, stay away from cream formulas that have wax and oil in them. Tip: Start with the highlighter before the blush for a more natural application. Apply the highlighter to your upper cheekbones and under the eye to diffuse darkness. Follow with a soft peach/Pink (The Big Easy by Cargo) or golden red blush (Torrid or Amour by Nars) to the apples of the cheek only--smile ladies (Great way to start the morning--you are BEAUTIFUL! FEEL IT/SEE IT!!!) and apply directly to the apples in a downward circle motion. By applying the highlighter before the blush, it makes your skin look less made up and more naturally luminous. Lastly and the BIGGEST TIP: Apply your concealer and blend down into highlighter and blush so that the color looks softer-as though it were coming through your skin.  This gives that truly lifted Cheekbone!  Try LORAC's concealors as they melt beautifully into the skin for that finished Red Carpet look.  Remember, you are Beautiful, inside and out!"
Michael Pierce, Makeup Artist ~ www.DistinctiveLook.net