New Work For Agency of The Year Awards June 2012 (Marketing Magazine Singapore)

I am super proud of this new editorial work, it is what makeup artists dream of, close-ups of lips, eyes, face, work has to be very precise (PRESSURE IS ON and we love that). When I got the news that this shoot was happening, I was beyond excited, this image was the cover of Agency of the Year Awards in Singapore for Marketing magazine.

Even better, the color of the lips is something I custom created myself using my trusted Makeup Forever Flash palette and on the face all Makeup Forever HD foundation for a clean finish. For this tone, I mixed a few hues and topped up with some gloss, although I’d say it was more a matte finish on the picture itself.

In Singapore you can purchase MUFE palette at the pro-store.

New Work

This is the cover of Human Resources magazine for May 2012. It was a group shoot with executives from different sectors within the industry, all full of zest and personality. For the men, skincare grooming was paramount and for the ladies I prepped the skin with All Mat primer and HD foundation from Makeup Forever.

Shu Uemura Product Launch at ION

Last Friday I was invited to attend a Shu Uemura event at ION Mall AND thank God I got the call on Thursday afternoon! Shu Uemura is a Japanese brand I am not too familiar with, the only two items in my makeup bag from it, are the iconic lash curler (two of them, one for me and another for clients) and a brow pencil. Of course, it was a super exciting to learn about their latest foundation, lipsticks and in general what is happening from May forward. For a breakdown of the different foundations, check this page out.

I tested the new Shu Uemura Face Architect Fluid Foundation in 754 (Medium Beige), a creamy liquid foundation with a semi matte finish, if you like dewy not heavily matted finish, this is for you (I liked it lots, I don’t usually do matte). Coverage was good, texture and application of this foundation all can be done with a sponge (I prefer a foundation brush or my hands), color was a close match for my skin tone. The only thing with Shu Uemura is that there isn’t a huge range of shades for darker skin colors, as a makeup artist I always think about my clients and this is an area where there should be more options.

The other item I was able to take home (and try out at the event) is a new range of very creamy lipsticks called Rouge Unlimited in 741, I chose a nude shade for myself as I liked the idea of using it during the day and at night. The color glides on nicely and works wonderfully, not highly pigmented for my liking but nice enough for a touch up on the go. The new rouge unlimited range is available at all Shu Uemura beauty counters island wide from May 2012.

Starting in May in Singapore, Shu Uemura is starting a sampling campaign for its face architect smooth fit fluid foundation at all their counters. Coupled with color consultation from professional beauty stylists, women will be able to experience the foundation at a price of $65. One thing I always advice before buying foundation is to TRY IT OUT on your skin! Make sure you test the shade and sample in your neck area or chin, to ensure you choose the right color.

Thank you for inviting me Shu Uemura, there were lovely sweets, cake to take home and a nail bar all which I enjoyed immensely, hope to be able to attend more fun events in the near future.

Oil Control After Makeup

For the last weeks I’ve been working on a print commercial for a big client. The days have been long and some of the shots were done outside in the middle of the day at a million degrees. There were beautiful locations like Siloso Beach and an ultra modern condo in the CBD area of Singapore. *CBD stands for Central Business District. We also shot in a football field for a couple of days, different conditions every time, all mostly warm. There were photography studio days of course.

The makeup always had to look great and the skin in both male and female talents was to be shine free. How did I manage this? I used a lot of blotting paper from Gatsby! **The oil blotting paper was sponsored. Basically I test drove it under the grueling humidity of Singapore. It worked extremely well! The main ingredients are talc and silica which have oil absorbing properties.

After the makeup was done, I used the blotting paper to keep the T-zone shine free (forehead and nose areas), using very gentle strokes to collect sweat/ shine. The Gatsby Oil Clear Sheet was excellent for removing oil/ dirt before makeup and before toning the skin/ using primer in some cases. After using the clear sheets, the skin was matte and the foundation glided on nicely without looking greasy. While we were outdoors on the beach, the Gatsby Powdered Oil Clear Paper worked its magic; I used it mostly on the male talents who were moving constantly and had to pose in the hot sun.

I am very happy to recommend the Gatsby blotting sheets, they are easy to work with and definitely deliver good results. **Gatsby is a Japanese brand available here in Singapore at most pharmacies and shops islandwide.

Beauty Wisdom

“After years and years of trying different hair products, and makeup, I can say I have had everything—long hair, straight hair, frizzy hair, short hair, no hair, a lot of lipstick, a lot of fake eyelashes, have tried everything. I understood very late that after a while, you have to be a bit comfortable and that people are not looking at you precisely—it’s a general feeling. But it took me years to understand that they are not looking at how your eyelashes are, except maybe if they are a professional makeup artist. It’s sad that all that you know when you are old, you learn when you are old. You try things, you have the feeling that you need things, when you are young. You think that if you have the right nail color it will change your life.

It is good to have few products that are very good quality. Listen to professional people so you can learn, read the magazines, so you learn things about looking better—I think everybody can look better. It’s good to have foundation on—it protects your skin from the weather, and nowadays it’s so easy to put it on.

I think there are a lot of people that still think makeup is painting on your face. But really makeup makes you feel better, and if you feel better then you look better. That is what I’ve learned, really—that I feel cleaner and neater if I have some makeup on.”

Excerpt taken from an interview with former face of Chanel and Lagerfeld muse, Inès de la Fressange, to read the whole thing, click here. (Thank you Into the Gloss). Ines is 51 years old and looks timeless.

When I read these words, it was like music to my ears, I even heard cherubs singing, stars and lights galore. One of the reasons why I got into makeup is the fact that everytime I applied a little bit, it always made me happy, radiant and the reactions I got from people were positive mostly. Makeup is about feeling good from the inside looking out.

Photo credit Vogue UK// Ines de la Fressange from her new book Parisian Chic © Paolo Roversi

What is BB Cream?

Last week while in Hong Kong, I noticed tons of ads for BB creams, all over the place.  I had no idea what a BB cream was?!!  According to my findings on the net, BB stands for Blemish Balm or Blemish Base, a skincare item sold/ marketed mainly in East and Southeast Asia. [I have been living in Singapore for the past four years].

There are countless brands in the market, even Illamasqua’s Skin Base Foundation is on the ball with this trend – as makeup artist and director of product developer David Horne explains “[Skin Base] is suitable for all skin types, it smoothes, softens and conditions your skin whilst providing natural, buildable coverage”.  Of course this is in reference to Illamasqua’s specific product [hoping to get my hands on Skin Base soon].

BB creams tackle different needs, some have soothing properties, others brightening and or whitening (a foreign concept for many of us Westerns who love bronzed/ sunkissed skin, most have SPF.  The common denominator is you can still use your foundation/ primer on top of your BB cream to protect your skin.  Wonder how this plays out in a humid place like Singapore?  Seems a bit of overkill to me.  BB is quite popular here though, as I noticed after perusing sg an online beauty forum, Sasa stores, Watsons and Guardian.  Naturally, I am super curious! My assigment over the next weeks is to try some BB creams suitable for my skin and shall report back.

For those itching to see what is out there, I found this super cool blog reviewing BB creams.

Armani, Shu Uemura and Lashem Haul

I’ve been coveting Armani makeup since test driving it at the Citroen and Frederic fashion show.  A bit of an anecdote, a male model from Hong Kong came to my makeup chair armed with his own Luminous Silk Armani foundation and NARS face cream.  Allow me to bust out with a Spanish onomatopoeia, PLOP, surprise, curiosity to see how it photographed.  The results were flawless on his skin!  We chatted about foundations, he commented that in the past, he had breakouts from using other foundations, specifically while working in Thailand. (Not surprised as the amount of counterfeit cosmetics is very high in places like Bangkok).  However, it was clear to me that he was very happy with Armani so I had to find out for myself.

For myself, I was in the market for a matte foundation, something different to try in the Singapore humidity.  *Typically I use a combination of concealer, tinted moisturiser and for night time definitely liquid foundation to even out skin.  At HK Airport Duty Free I went gaga over Face Fabric Number 2 by Armani and Eyes To Kill 5 (Gold blitz) eyeshadows, sadly most of the shades I needed were out of stock.

At the airport, I got a great deal with a friend buying the famous Shu Uemura lash curlers, it was a double pack, we split the cost so each curler came out to $14SGD.  Win-win. These are priced at $32 for ONE at the local Shu Uemura counter.

Lastly, my lashes are a little sad due to some crazy adhesive that stayed on my eyes for weeks (no, it was not individual lash extensions, those don’t make your lashes fall out excessively).  I found Lashem and have been using it since four days ago. The natural ingredients and the fact that it is Paraben-free and hypoallergenic were enough for me to give this product a try.  In a few weeks time, once my lashes grow, I will report on the progress and whether or not, this is the holy grail in lash growth assistance.

Love Hedonia UK

Hedonia is a fabulous British fashion brand selling a range of clothing sizes 8-14 UK. For their summer lookbook, I had the pleasure of doing makeup and hair for the lovely Jessica from up-and-coming band Fanfair.

On Jessica:

  1. Firstly, I prepped her skin with moisturizer and used MUFE primer.  I made sure she was glowing before I applied MUFE HD foundation which reflects nicely on studio lighting and is a cream based product.
  2. On her eyes, I started with a cream base using Illamasqua Hollow cream pigment finishing a smokey eye look with Urban Decay Naked Pallette.  Jessica’s look had to reflect a daytime feel, nothing too heavy as the dresses were bright, fun and summery.  Under the eyes, there was a dash of MUFE concealer blended from the outer corner and highlighting using MAC. I filled in her brows with a Boots N7 light brown pencil.
  3. Lastly I gave the cheeks a touch of color using a MAC soft pink blusher.  To define Jessica’s lips I used my Smashbox 18 lip pallette, another personal favorite as it photographs beautifully.

Loving Illamasqua

While at MUSE London in April, Illamasqua was introduced to me during Catwalk Trends bootcamp weekend.  After trying it out on different faces and various textures,  I became a massive fan of their Hollow cream pigment, the Medium pencil in brown, Light liquid foundation, blushers and pretty much the brand ethos “make-up for your alter ego“.  I used Hollow to contour and as an eye base, worked beautifully. The pencils can also be used as eyeshadow, the pigment is quite good and offers a nice layering effect.

The flagship shop at Beak Street gets another rave from me for outstanding customer service, one of the best experiences I’ve ever had both as an artist and a consumer, spent quite a bit of time asking questions and getting feedback, not just a sales pitch, it felt genuine. Inside the Illamasqua space, the decor and feel is very sexy, visually fabulous.  My artist discount was honored without hassle; I talked about my courses, being an expat in Singapore, etc.  And just like the experience at MUSE, I left Illamasqua elated and eager to practice and try out my new purchases.

Illamasqua is available in UK, Australia, Dubai, and in the USA at Sephora. You get a loyalty discount after your 3rd purchase!

For a closer look at one of Illasmaqua’s creators Julian Kynaston, click here

Amorsoloesque Makeup

This photo by Candy Yam is part of the Amorsoloesque photography workshop I did makeup for on Saturday Dec 4th. It was conducted by Filipino photographer Maricris Carlos – she is an expert in this field of whimsical post-production. Putting makeup on model Alexia Giessen was great fun, I used very bold eye colours mixing Yaby pearl eyeshadows, a small touch of Face Atelier foundation with some Yaby concealer.  Another secret weapon was the Shadow Shields – they are an amazing little tool to help avoid messy racoon eyes. I spent a while working on Alexa’s eyes, they needed to stand out for the studio lighting. This workshop was fast paced and the participants like myself, live for the moment of getting the right angles. Thank you Xilver Claire Events for booking me! I loved every second of it.