Duo Eyelash Adhesive – Black vs. Clear Glue -Does it Make a Difference?

Eyelash glueWhen it comes to applying false eyelashes, Duo Eyelash Adhesive is hands down the eyelash glue of choice by professional makeup artists.  There are a few others that exist but there is nothing that can compare to this brand.

Now this is where things get a little more tricky.  Duo offers a clear glue (it goes on white and dries clear) or a black glue.  So which is best?

The reason behind providing the choice of a black glue is that when it dries, it gives the appearance of wearing black eyeliner.  This saves a step from applying actual eyeliner if it already looks like you are wearing it.  As a concept, I think this is brilliant!

However, the glue can sometimes be a little messy and smudge or move around during the application.  This is where things can get sticky (figuratively) because fixing this is not easy.  It would look like smudged black eyeliner and once it dries, it is fully set.

This is why I always prefer the clear Duo Eyelash Adhesive.  Since it dries clear, it doesn’t show up.  Meaning if the glue smudges during the application, it does not matter as everything is hidden.  

The best technique when applying false eyelashes is to first apply all your eye shadow followed by lining the eyes on top (if you want to skip eyeliner altogether, this is an option too although I always think false lashes should be paired up with a little eyeliner).  Then you can go ahead and apply the false eyelashes over top the eyeliner as close to the lash line as possible.  I sometimes will also take it a step further and go over the top liner again once the glue is dried to make sure the eyeliner is extra smooth and defined.  I also like to do this as it conceals even more the fact that I applied a set of false eyelashes.

Given the choice, I will always recommend the clear Duo Eyelash Adhesive!

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The Most Long-wearing Black Eyeliner Pencil

nars-via-veneto

NARS Larger Than Life Long Wear Eyeliner – “Via Veneto”

As a makeup artist, one of the most commonly asked questions I receive is, “What do you think is the most long-wearing black eyeliner?”  Many clients tell me that their eyeliner smudges and there is nothing out there that really lasts all day.

I’ll be honest, I think that most eyeliners, despite being classified as waterproof, are going to move a little bit within a few hours.  They might smudge slightly but they definitely should not run or just magically disappear by the end of the day.

It is definitely not uncommon for an eyeliner to smudge a little and I think it is just a normal thing that happens.  However, when someone tells me that absolutely nothing has worked for them and their eyeliner consistently runs no matter what they use, I recommend what I think to be the best smudge-proof black eyeliner pencil, the NARS Larger Than Life Long Wear Eyeliner in Via Veneto.  (FYI, these pencils do come in various shades).

For starters, this eyeliner pencil glides on rather smoothly and it truly is a jet black type of black.  Some black eyeliners are not very black but this one definitely is which makes it exceptionally good when creating a more dramatic look.  An added perk is that this pencil is designed with a twist up applicator (meaning it does not need a sharpener in between uses) but does also come with a built in sharpener on the opposite end to provide a sharper tip if desired.

When using this pencil, I do want to mention that it is important to always put the cap back on after each application.  I have noticed that the pencil can get dry (and not apply as smoothly along with breaking off more easily) if the cap is not placed on after each use.

This is definitely a makeup kit essential!  I do not use this pencil on everyone as I do not think everyone is in need of a super smudge-proof eyeliner; however, for anyone who emphasizes that this is a makeup concern or is looking for a smokey eye effect, the NARS “Via Veneto” black eyeliner pencil is the best!

Building Your Makeup Wardrobe – What Every Woman Should Own

For starters, happy 2017!  With the beginning of the new year, aside from setting new years resolutions (although I like to do this year round, not just in the beginning of January), I take the time to reorganize everything including my makeup collection.  I find organizing makeup is like organizing your closet.  It is a matter of going through what you currently own, tossing out what you no longer use, and making room for what is needed.

This has lead me to writing this post to discuss what I believe every woman should own in her makeup wardrobe.  Do you have the makeup products that ‘make up’ a complete makeup wardrobe?

Here is a list of the makeup necessities that I think everyone should own in their overall makeup collection:

FACE:

–  Skincare (an everyday moisturizer [ideally with SPF] and I do recommend a serum as this will deliver the most skincare benefits)
–  Primer (I cannot emphasize this enough and this should go without saying, just saying)
–  Foundation (One or two different ones.  I think that depending on the time of year, skin tone can change, so it is good to have two shades along with having different mediums, such as one liquid and one cream foundation)
–  Concealer (I own two, one that is strictly for under eye and one that has extra coverage to cover those occasional blemishes)
–  Powder (for setting the entire foundation)
–  Blush (Start off with at least one but I would say a minimum of three.  I think having different shades of blush makes playing up your makeup more fun)
–  Highlighters (I have various ones, I recommend owning both a liquid/cream type and a powder)
–  Bronzer / Contouring powder (I think only one is truly needed to do the job)
* Setting spray (I starred this as I think this can be optional)

EYES:

–  Eyeshadow Primer (Again, this is just as important as face primer.  All you need is one good one for everyday)
–  Eyeshadows  (I would say a minimum of five colors.  To create the most basic everyday eyeshadow application, you would need 3-4 eyeshadows.  [A lid color, highlight, crease, and the extra would be an outer crease color for extra depth/contour].  Over time, I think it is good to build this up to at least 10 shades.  The best way to do this is to invest in a good eye shadow palette which provides an assortment of colors to play with)
–  Eyeliner – top liner (I put these in separate categories as I truly believe the top liner needs to be a liquid or gel formula.  I would say at least one black and one of your choice such as brown, purple, blue, etc.  Having various eyeliners can really change up the look)
–  Eyeliner – bottom liner  (For the bottom liner, I recommend pencil only.  Liquid can be used but I think it can look too harsh.  Again, as mentioned above, at least one black and then another color of your choice)
–  Eyebrow powder/pencil (For myself, I strictly use powder for filling in my brows and have been doing this ever since I became a makeup artist.  If you prefer pencil, then get an eyebrow pencil.  Either way, I think almost everyone can benefit from a brow product of some sort for filling in any sparse areas and defining their shape)
–  Mascara (I think having one great mascara is all that is needed although I do also think it is nice to own two different ones, including a mascara primer for building the lashes prior to mascara)
*  False eyelashes (This is optional as many people do not wear false eyelashes too often but I think it is always good to have a couple pairs for special occasions. If you are uncomfortable applying them yourself, bring them to your makeup artist or practice applying them yourself.  As a professional makeup artist, you better bet I keep a good stash of false eyelashes in my makeup vanity!)   

LIPS:

–  Lipsticks (Ideally, everyone should have a minimum of 5-10 different shades in their collection.  Lipsticks are makeup accessories, so depending on the look, it is nice to have shades ranging from natural and everyday to more statement colors such as reds for going out)
 Lip glosses (Depending on the type of person you are, this number can range.  For me personally, I own a ton of lip glosses but I really only gravitate toward the same three.  Mainly because I do not like wearing lipgloss too much to begin with)
–  Lip liner (I do not think lip liner is an absolute makeup necessity but it is good to own at least one for the days you want to play up the lips.  I also believe one good lip liner can go with most lipsticks.  If you have a real variety of lipsticks in your collection, then more lip liners are needed for matching purposes)
–  Lip conditioner ([such as lip balm or Chapstick].  I personally keep this by my nightstand)

important-makeup-brushesLast but surely NOT least, let’s NOT forget about the tools needed!  By tools, I am talking makeup brushes!  As a makeup artist, I have always said, having all the makeup in the world means nothing if you do not have the proper brushes to apply the makeup.  Makeup brushes may seem expensive, but there is no greater investment.

Here is a general list of what will be needed along with my personal recommendations and favorites.  I am trying to keep this fairly basic although it is always good to build up your brush collection over time.  Depending on your makeup collection, owning multiples of certain brushes may be required.

FACE BRUSHES
:

–  Foundation brush (I like the MAC #190, this is always a classic for applying liquid foundations although there are many brushes out there that are essentially the same thing)
–  Powder brush (for applying all over powder, I use the Chanel “touch up” buffer brush)
–  Blush brush (I recommend MAC #129, this has always been my go to blush brush for many years, although I recognize there are many blush brushes out there that are almost the same)
–  Contour brush  (Personally, I like a tapered one so I use the MAC #138)
–  Highlighter brush (For powder highlighting application only [creams/liquid highlighters, I do use my finger tips instead of a brush], I use the MAC #165 which is tapered also and is pretty much the baby version of the MAC #138)
*  All over buffer brush (This is optional but I do use this to go over and smooth out the contouring and blush application.  The MAC #150 or any brush that is fluffy will work)

EYE BRUSHES:

–  Eyeshadow primer brush (If you are using a cream based eyeshadow primer, which is what I use and recommend [vs. one that is liquid and comes in a tube with an applicator], then a brush is needed.  I have been using a brush by Crown brushes which is comparable to the MAC #242).
–  Lid eye shadow brush (For applying shadow on the eyelids only, I use the MAC #239.  This has always been my favorite)
–  Highlighter eye shadow brush  (Believe it or not, for this, I use an Estee Lauder brush that came in a gift set that was given to me when I was 16 years old!  It is my oldest brush that I use to this day.  It does not have a number so I cannot say what it is but I can make a recommendation and suggest getting the MAC #224 for highlighting under the brows)
–  Crease Blending eye shadow brush (As I am sure I have said this before, I cannot blend eyeshadows without the MAC #217 brush.  In my personal collection, I own five of these brushes!  In my professional makeup brush belt, I also own five!  This is mandatory to own, at least one but I own many because my crease color can vary and this prevents me from having to clean the brush in between every single usage)
Angled brush – One for brows (if you are using a powder) and one for eyeliner (only if you are using a gel eye liner)  If you do not use either product, you can forgo this completely.  If you use both, you will need two separate ones and I would recommend the MAC #266 for eyeliner and the MAC #208 for the brows.

LIP BRUSHES:
[Personally, I do not own any lip brushes in my collection other than in my professional makeup brush belt]

Keep in mind that this is a general makeup guide and will vary depending on your lifestyle and what you feel most comfortable wearing.  Overall, if you follow this, you will have a complete makeup wardrobe!

The #1 Makeup Trick to Offset Close-Set Eyes

kristen-stewart-cover-of-wFive years ago, I remember when I had seen Kristen Stewart on the cover of this issue of W magazine, I had thought to myself, “Wow, this is the best I have ever seen her look.”  Getting over the reality that this was also probably heavily photoshopped, let us give props to where props are due, her makeup artist.  The makeup artist who created this look truly transformed her  and knew how to enhance her features with the right makeup placement to make her look strikingly captivating.  Which leads me to a great point (and inspiration for this post I might add):  Isn’t it amazing what a little makeup can do?

What are close-set eyes?  Close-set eyes are when the eyes are distanced closer towards the center of the nose and visually do not look proportionate.  I will go ahead and make a true makeup artist confession right now–that as a highly visual person, this is a visual turn-off for me.  However, there is a light at the end of the tunnel as this can be visually corrected with the right makeup techniques!  Makeup can actually make the eye distance look more balanced.

The best way to offset close-set eyes is with a dramatic winged liner.  As seen on the cover, her winged liner is overly extended and exaggerated.  Although for most people, this can look too over the top and garish in which I would not recommend it as an everyday look necessarily, it actually works wonders for anyone that has close-set eyes.  Reason being that the defined black winged liner is visually pulling the eyes away from the center of the face and away from the nose.  If you look at the images of Kristen Stewart closely, you would never really even know she has close-set eyes to begin with thanks to a dramatic black winged liner.

I also want to add in that it is best to avoid adding lighter colors (such as a white shimmer eyeshadow which is most often done to brighten the eyes and make them pop) towards the inner corners as this would only bring more visual attention again towards the center of the face when the main focus is to change the focal point by bringing more emphasis towards the corners of the eyes to pull the eyes away from the nose.