Category Archives: My Stories

Right in the Night

Awaiting her birthday

Throughout my career, I have had the opportunity to do makeup in a variety of venues, in even more of a variety of capacities.  From runways to film, editorial print to personal appearance, I have been blessed to see it all – or almost nearly all.  Even through the glitz and glam of the Hollywood lifestyle, what I have always appreciated the most – and what still excites me the most to this day – is painting the girl ready to paint the town red.  Outfit carefully selected and hair in rollers, I love making up the girl ready to embrace the night.

While I was living in Washington, D.C., I had the pleasure on several occasions to work with my dear friend and fellow Archer, Erin.  Amidst our classroom discussion of world politics and economics, we would find ourselves secretly texting about the latest Vogue covers and what D.C. social engagement we would “make our way into” later that night.

Erin and I bonded from day one because of our shared passion for beauty and aesthetics, and our insatiable desire for all things lovely.  While the majority of our cohorts were blinded by a veil of cosmetic ignorance, Erin & I would lose ourselves in our favorite color stories and the potential of what “look” we would try next.

Makeup, as you will often hear me say, has power beyond the physical transformation.  Intangible in that it creates a sensation, allowing a woman to feel at her best.  More than any highlighter or complexion enhancer, the impression of feeling beautiful gives the most powerful glow to your face.  When you feel beautiful, you look beautiful.

On that note, however, I would be remiss if I didn’t share some invaluable pieces of my personal makeup box that always act as helping hands to creating the perfect “stepping out on the town” face.  As there are probably a million possibilities to nine o’clock makeup, I will limit this entry to what my dear friend Erin always loved.  Particular in her own right, she always wanted a perfect complexion – light and airy, with a soft glow in the only the right places.  The first mistake that I have noticed that women make is assuming that they need more makeup when the sun goes down.  This is a common misconception and most likely the most important.

A heavy foundation or powder, even in the evening, tends to create a mask rather than a beautiful face.  There are two foundations that I tend to work with when your event of choice will be humbly lit.  If you have few imperfections, I suggest you try Chanel’s newest foundation, Vitalumiere Aqua (retail $45).  As I have described to clients, this foundation is for the woman who likes the idea of a tinted moisturizer, but likes a little more coverage.  I love its silky, slightly candescent coverage and ability to let your own skin shine through.  Often, women with beautiful skin cover up their own glow with too much foundation or powder, and this option gives the perfect amount of coverage.

For those of you with a few more things to hide – and don’t feel bad as the majority of the women in the world fall into this category – I use HD Foundation by Make Up For Ever (retail $40).  This particular foundation is a makeup artists favorite pick and gives amazing coverage and a seamless finish to the skin.  With a wide range of color options and rumored to be what Ms. Gaga uses herself, this foundation is sure to set the palette for an evening of complexion perfection.

I differ with a lot of artist regarding evening eyes.  Many prefer to use this as an opportunity to apply bolder colors and deeper creases – all of which is fine, just not my personal preference.  I prefer to do a soft wash of color to the entire lid and a slightly deeper hue in the crease.  For the base lid color, I often times use MAC’s Ricepaper single shadow as it gives a sheer veil to the lid and doesn’t look powdery (retail $15).  For the crease I like to blend a subtle deep honey right above the brow bone.  Either the single shadow Brule or Samoa Silk – both by MAC – work great to accomplish this soft definition (retail $15).  Eyeliner is an essential element for the nighttime creation, and I suggest trying NARS Larger Than Life Long-Wear Eyeliner (retail $23).

Lips are probably the most personal feature and I normally prefer women to have a lot of input into this area.  Darker lips are ok, but again my personal preference for evening is a softer, high-gloss texture.  I love the Mega Shine Lip Gloss by NYX Cosmetics (retail $5.50).  My favorites are Sugar Pie and Baby Rose.  NYX also makes great, inexpensive lip liners to set the parameters of your lip.  I use Nude Pink and Peekaboo Neutral quite often (retail $3.50).  Try filling in the entire lip first with the lip pencil, applying your gloss, then retracing the outer edges with the liner.

What women most eagerly ask for when I am painting their evening face is radiance. Every woman wants the “afterglow” appearance, and if I had a penny for every time that I was asked for the J Lo glow, I could retire.  This is where I beg you to be cautious.  Too much shimmer can ruin a beautiful effect.  However, applied in the right areas – with a very light touch – highlighters can create a delicate candlelight luminosity to your overall look.  I am in love with the NARS Copacabana Illuminator (retail $29).  Its liquid texture allows you to apply a tiny drop above the cheekbones, down the bridge of the nose and on the chin.  This will pick up light, regardless the environment, and give a halo to each of those areas.

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