Meeting My Peeps

Yesterday, I got called to a Colorescience event. I wasn’t even sure I was going to go, but then I researched the company and decided to check them out. This is one of those times when you’re glad you got off your ass and went out to see the sun. While I was there, I met some of the most amazing women… and I realized how much I’ve been missing talking to ACTUAL colleagues in my profession who regularly move and work in an adult space without cameras or constant digital validation.



It started when I sidled up to a group of women who were being educated by a member of the Colorescience team. They welcomed me in… and the next thing you know we were screaming about the difference between contour as correction and spending an hour on fotd mood 4‘cake face’ just to go to the gas station. What a burst of FRESH AIR to talk to women who understand exactly why I  twisted my lips at Tilbury’s Legendary Mascara because of claims vs. actual performance (did I ever talk to y’all about how it smudges all to be damned on the lower lash line after about 4 hours?) and how hard it is to trust ANY of these so-called pros on the internet. Y’all thought I was mad about IMATS? None of them even went to PHAME because they were not up for the bullshit. They’re like: most of that stuff gets sent to the productions we work on or we can get it any time we need from the pro stores. Who wants to be in 100 degree heat on PURPOSE because the convention is made up of more Youtube fans than actual professionals? Imagine how much I sparkled when one of the artists said the EXACT SAME THING about the lack of hair education or products at a convention that was also supposed to cater to hair stylists…

Another woman sidled up to us when she heard me talking about teaching yoga to dancers (former dancer herself) and we welcomed her in and suddenly she was sharing the BEST fotd mood 5stories…

How amazing to talk about the VALUE of interacting with human beings in a human space, instead of on a consistent digital platform. One lady told me that a girl reached out to intern with her. But it was actually the girl’s (NOT A GIRL. Actual age: 27) mother who contacted her, after googling this artist’s name. When the artist specified that the girl HERSELF would need to make the request and show some interest in getting the job… *crickets. Her point was that these very LARGE digital personalities tend to shrink in real world environments that don’t directly impact their celebrity. Being a professional mua has a crap ton of perks, but it also involves knowledge, a fluid personality, and actual WORK. We talk to somebody who knows somebody who needs somebody and BAM! Pirates of the Caribbean (real story). You treat everyone with kindness because the asshole who declared himself Key (like… wtf) and tried to drive you absolutely insane with his ‘vision’ at a random fashion show is now fotd mood 1asking you for a job (another real story). We got to talking about joint issues from standing for a billion hours or working in ridiculous environments (I SCREAMED when one artist with the best name in the world talked about doing makeup for a celebrity client in the bathroom of a club with a precision light strapped to her forehead… real world mua problems y’all). I told them that people tend to know me by by head scarf, and one girl was like I NEED ONE! She is wearing wigs because she can’t be bothered. Worked with RuPaul on a new show and was like ‘well at least I can wear my wigs here and no one will give a damn.’ Doing professional makeup is NOT about THE MAKEUP ARTIST. It’s about the client and about the art. And we all agreed that so much of that seems to be lost with this new crop of self-declared pros. Between talking about skin issues, color theory, the art of contour as correction vs. necessity, and how celebrities of a certain caliber want the camera to see their FACE, not their makeup… we hit all the high points.

I meant to stay for 45 minutes. 2 1/2 hours later I looked up and realized just how much fun I was having. What a wonderful and priceless experience. MY PEEPS Y’ALL! My peeps. The Colorscience people left and we were still huddled in a circle laughing and high-fiving each other.

We all agreed that digital platforms have so much value and are not to be dismissed, but when people are using it to hijack an actual profession, members of that profession are bound to speak about it. We love that you’ve learned to do makeup on yourself. We love that you’re excited about it and want to share. We don’t love when you interrupt a show or a lesson about tricking the camera or the naked eye with shadows and light, because you don’t understand why the extremely qualified Educator has not used contour on his model (a real story). We don’t love when you introduce yourself based on your channel/instagram/snapchat and lead with how many followers you have (another real story). We don’t care. Can you show up on time, do the work, and not bother people with your drama? Do you play well with others? Can you pivot when the situation calls for it?

We spent damn near an hour talking about the pivot. It’s a very real thing.

I confessed that I was not on Snapchat and one of them was like… OH YOU MUST! She showed me hers and another artist confessed that she learned how to use it from a toddler who was in her chair one day. The valet guy showed me how to use it and showed me all the fun stuff while we were waiting for our cars. We laughed and clapped and hugged and exchanged numbers. I even promised to do pizza at one of our favorite local joints (turns out that three of them live right near me).

What a HAPPY PLACE to be in. I got home, ate my weight in spicy noodles, discovered a face demon/cystic pimple on my chin (and promptly slapped Oatmeal & Peppermint and Juno on it), and went to bed.

Good times.

*this morning the face demon is significantly smaller. small miracles people… small miracles.*


FOTD: Wearable Indulgence

I used the two golden hues from my MAC Indulge haul: Gilt Gourmet (fluidline) and Three Ring Yellow (eyeshadow).

Marc Jacobs Genius Gel Foundation (Cocoa Light)
Bobbi Brown Pressed Powder (Golden Orange)
Guerlain Terracotta Bronzer (03)
MAC Blush in Stylish Me
MAC Fludline in Gilt Gourmet (inner lids)
MAC Eyeshadow in Three Ring Yellow (entire lid)
Elizabeth Arden Smoky Eye Pencil in Noir (lashline & waterline)
Volume de Chanel Mascara
Chanel Lip Pencil in Nude
Shiseido Lip Lacquer in GD 817

Glow On: Bobbi Brown Illuminating Bronzing Powder (Santa Barbara)

Bobbi Brown is offering a new way to ‘glow’ — with a collection of Illuminating Bronzing Powders that offer something for everyone. The latest addition to the collection is the ‘pink nectar’ color called Santa Barbara.
I thought this golden pink color was going to look a little juvenile on me.. but it’s so subtle that (believe it or not) I actually wore it lightly dusted as a finishing powder all over my face. I know! Sounds nuts… but it totally worked.

I know you guys are looking at these pictures and asking whether I temporarily lost my mind… but I promise you the finish is gorgeous and subtle. And although you can wear it as a blush or highlighter, some skin tones can actually get away with dusting this stuff all over.
The texture of this powder is extremely soft, and it can ‘dust’ everywhere when you use it, so be careful. I got a bunch of it on the brush and ended up  having to tap back into the pot because I’d picked up way too much. The coverage is very sheer, but you can layer it when using it as blush, to build up the color.
This is a HEAVY swatch. See. Subtle. Gorgeous. I love this stuff. Gave me a really healthy ‘glow’ without going overboard in the shimmer department. Totally recommend.
You can find out more about Bobbi Brown Illuminating Bronzing Powder HERE.

Glow On: Laura Mercier ‘SpellBound’ Face Illuminator

Even if you think you don’t need another highlighter (I certainly don’t need one)… the Laura Mercier SpellBound Face Illuminator is worth a swatch. Designed with a ‘warmer’ palette in mind… the shimmery highlighter is mostly golden, with just a hint of rose tossed in for good measure. I fell in love with it the minute I saw it. The visual texture in the pan is like scrunched satin… with all of the light-catching nuances that such a thing would bring.

Pictures simply do not do this thing justice. It is so gorgeous.

You can find out more about Laura Mercier SpellBound Face Illuminator HERE.

Blushed: Chanel Cream Blush (Presage)

The highly anticipated cream blushes from Chanel are here, and they do NOT disappoint. I got to play with the lot of them during a recent trip to Nordstrom, and it’s safe to say that there’s a little something for everyone.

I ended up with the peachy color called Presage. It’s the most universally flattering color of the selection, I think. There’s also a deep pink (Fantastic), a cool blue-toned pink (Affinite), and a warm pink (Revelation) that I want. One of the blushes, Destiny, is not much of a blush at all. It’s more like a bronzer for fair skinned beauties. In fact, it completely disappears on my skin… I dare say I could even wear it as foundation.
The fantastic thing about these blushes is, although they are labeled ‘cream’ — they are more like a solid mousse texture. They move like a cream on the skin, but blend down to a matte finish. There is no oil… no slick… no shine to speak of. So oily skinned beauties can apply this blush with confidence, and not worry about it looking like they applied lip gloss as a blush color
I find this color works best when applied with fingers, or a dense synthetic brush. You can certainly use a fluffier brush to diffuse the color, but these colors are initially sheer. They build with intensity as you layer them. So you can make the color as saturated as you wish.

This color is so flattering on my warm skintone… it literally makes my skin ‘glow.’ I love it. I’m definitely going back for more. You can find out more about Chanel Cream Blushes HERE.

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Product Review: Ying Yu Jade Face Roller

I’m ever on the hunt for things that are … interesting … regarding beauty and skin care. I’m not up for the newest ‘discovery’ of some plant in the deepest caves of wherever containing an elixir that only activates at midnight under a full moon (you know what I mean). But I do love to try things that have some sense of history to them.

That’s what led me to Ying Yu Jade. I first learned about this lovely little ‘face roller’ through Cult Beauty. Research (mine) reveals that it helps with ‘puffiness’ in the face and aids in lymphatic drainage. I found a great video for a ‘jade facial’ that’s got me very excited about using this.

My Jade Face Roller came today:

I got the Double Face Roller, which has one larger side for the face, and a smaller side for the eye area. As I understand it, this lovely roller works best when cooled (some folks recommend putting it in the fridge for a spell before use), and should always be rolled ‘upward’ — never down.

I got the ‘practitioners’ version of the roller, which is reportedly adjustable. I’m still trying to figure out ‘how’ to adjust it, but I’m not too worried about that. The ‘holder’ on this particular roller looks to be a bit more sturdy than the pedestrian version… I would imagine for multiple  uses on multiple clients. The large roller is a bit bigger, as is the smaller roller. The handle is also longer. Now that I have it and can see it in person, I can see that the pedestrian version would be just as sturdy (ass the smaller roller is constructed the same on the practitioner’s version).

First Impressions: The weight is beautiful. It fits snugly in the hand and rolls perfectly along the planes of the face with no pressure. The weight of the actual tool is sufficient to encourage drainage. I’m still getting used to the smaller ‘eye’ portion of the roller… I imagine that with practice I’ll get it perfect.

I also got an ‘acu-roller’:

This roller is even heavier, and more sturdy than the face roller. I believe this roller is for other parts of the body (not necessarily the face). I tend to get tight down the back of my arms and across the shoulder blades… and I’m hoping that this will help the muscles relax a bit.

I got both of my rollers directly from the Ying Yu Jade website, which is located here in the United States. The shipping is super fast, and the customer service is exceptional. Internationally, you can find the rollers (both single and double) on the Cult Beauty website.

PHAME Expo: Everyday Glamour with Valente Frazier

The Saturday Keynote Speaker for PHAME was none other than Valente Frazier. I made a point of getting to the expo to see him (I had to break my day up for a very special mommy-to-be). I always learn so much when he holds a demonstration.

This time was no different. Valente took us through his step by step process of Everyday Glamour:

Moisturizing with Embryolisse Lait Concentrate
 Foundation: Diorskin Airflash Foundation (YEAH!), and concealing with OCC concealer (with the help of a BeautyBlender).
Highlighting and Contouring
Eyeshadow, liner, and mascara. He layered the multi-tasking Make Up For Ever Flash Palette (gold) with a gold-shaded YSL Palette (#3), and used MAC Teddy pencil on the waterline and lashline. He finished with some mascara, and a nude-peach lip.
Done. Beautiful.