Saturday, October 20, 2012

Fountain of Youth

Untitled #11

Part of being a makeup artist is knowing a little bit about skin. Good makeup looks best on good skin. Good skin, what does that mean? I'll let you in on one of my little secrets that has big effects.

I have clients that say, "Karen I want skin like you, how can I get that?" Now most of the time I'm wearing a full face of makeup, and of course my skin doesn't look naturally perfect when I don't wear makeup. I do have a mild case of rosacea, broken capillaries, and some mild pigmentation from those stubborn pimples. I'm not going to say I have bad skin, because I don't. From a very young age, my mother has instilled good skincare etiquette in me. I never leave my house without sunscreen, I cleanse my face twice a day, and I use nothing but the best products on my skin. 

Over time I've realized what products work for me and what products don't. This is important, if you find a holy grail skincare product DO NOT switch out this product for another that MIGHT be better for your skin. Chances are that it won't, and then you're left with a mess.

My skin is a normal-dry combination with some dehydration in the drier seasons. 80% of the clients I deal with, have dehydrated skin. You can be extremely oily and still have dehydrated skin. One product I can not live with out is my face oil. Oil? For your face? I can already imagine a few of you pulling a face, possibly in disgust. But let me tell you non-believers, face oils are becoming one of the most popular products in the skincare industry. Unlike moisturizers, oils penetrate deeper with in the skin, which means you can achieve instant hydration. 

A lot of the oils that they use in oil cleansers and treatments are natural. A few listed are argan oil, sunflower oil, almond oil. You can even find these oils safe to use on your hair. They have amazing anti-aging properties and give your skin that dewy radiance that we've all been going crazy for. 

I've been using the NUDE Skincare line for about 3 months now, and I can safely say this line saved my skin. I don't have the tightness that I usually have around this time when the weather transitions into a drier climate. My skin looks a 100 times smoother and more radiant. I find myself using less makeup because I feel more comfortable with how it's been looking. 

The three products I use are the Perfect Cleansing Oil Face & Eyes, ProGenius treatment oil, and the Radiant Day Moisturizer. The cleansing oil is gentle on even the most sensitive skin. It removes all makeup, even waterproof, and cleans up all dirt and oil left behind. The moisturizer gives me the right amount of hydration without leaving me feeling greasy, which is ideal for you oily-combination readers. And last but certainly not least is the ProGenius oil, which contains some of their most concentrated ingredients. All products are infused with their n-probiotic patent, which helps you create your own anti-aging ingredients within your skin. Also, their products are infused with omega oils that your skin naturally needs, and these omegas give you different skincare benefits. The line is natural, gluten free, vegan friendly(all but one product, which contains bees wax), and free of GMO's and parabens. Check out their website if you are curious and are interested in becoming a oil crazed fan, much like myself.
take care.

Friday, August 31, 2012


A few weeks ago I celebrated my 24th birthday. I decided to keep it low key, which is a little unusual for me. None the less, I went to visit my parents in London and had a few drinks and cake. It was actually very relaxing, and the perfect way to celebrate my 24th.

 Earlier on in the day I was the make up artist for a bridal party. I spent a good portion of my day doing what I love best, making women feel beautiful. The bride was glowing and the brides maids looked elegant. 

I had every intention of going out for my birthday so I did prepare by having a birthday make up look. Below you'll be able to see the exact look I wore for my birthday. 

Also, one of my favorite lip combinations makes an appearance in this video. I want to thank everyone that has stopped by this blog and has shown me support. I really feel like 24 is going to be a great year! Enjoy the video, take care.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Pride Basics

pride basics

Last weekend was extremely hectic. With it being Canada day, Pride, and the Euro Cup Final there was no time to stop and breath. I think I was nursing a 4 day hang over by the end, and boy did I pay for it. Now that I've recovered I managed to put a Pride makeup tutorial together!

If some of you don't know what Pride is, it's basically the celebration of the Gay community. Pride falls on a different week in each city. If Pride hasn't happened in your city yet, I totally recommend going out and enjoying a great party.

I had two different looks for the weekend of Pride, but decided to do a tutorial on the look that I got most compliments on. To be honest, I whipped up this look while I was extremely hung over. I'm going to pat myself on the back for that one.

Above you'll see some of the products I consider to be Pride basics.

First off contour, you can't do drag or fierce without a little contour, in fact the more the better. Next up color liners. You really can't go wrong with color at pride use any color combination to make unique looks. Also, making sure the liners are waterproof is key. Pride usually falls in the summer, so you want to make sure that your makeup stays on all day. 

One thing I forgot to mention are lashes. I was too hung over to be bothered with applying fake lashes. Instead, I chose a fiber mascara that made my lashes look fake. Urban Decay's Big Fatty Mascara did the job. Now a pop of color on the lips, I stuck with a baby doll pink gloss from Lorac called Haute. It's perfectly creamy and gives you just the right amount of color. Last but not least, SHIMMER. Go wild with glitter and shimmer, it gives the look a little flash!

Check out the tutorial for a little more detail.

Take care, and happy Pride!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Summer Favorites

summer makeup

Summer time when the living is easy. Billie Holiday croons in the background as I'm applying my makeup, but something has changed. I don't want to spend 30-40 minutes applying my makeup. I need simplicity, especially since I'm trying to absorb as much of this beautiful weather as possible. All this being said, I still want to look fresh faced. 
Here are a few options for you when looking for Summer makeup. 
Keep everything light, that means switch out your thick, perhaps cream foundation and opt for something sheer in texture. For example my go to, Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream. Reminiscent of a tinted moisturizer but with a few more benefits such as priming, perfecting, concealing, and controlling oil through out the day. Did I mention it has an SPF of 35! Protecting your skin is rule number one during the summer. 
If you feel like you want a little more coverage go in with a little bit of concealer, one of my favorites being Bobbi Brown's corrector in peach.
Next up, enhancing your eyes. I love the Make Up Forever Aqua Shadows they're creamy and they're waterproof! Also, a few coats of a fiber wig mascara will have you jumping for joy. It's completely water resistant, and you don't need to spend hours removing it. Just apply a little bit of warm water, and the tubes that coat themselves around each eyelash with wash away.
To finish off the complexion go for a natural sun kiss glow. I love Laura Mercier's Loose Shimmer Powder in Sundust. It has a slight shimmer to give the skin an extra glow. If you have oily skin, don't fret there are plenty of matte options out there. Rely on your own natural oils to give you that J-Lo glow. 
Also, don't forget to add a little bit of color with some cream blush. Josie Maran's Argan infused cream blushers are gorgeous, and hydrate the skin at the same time.
Finally, a fun colorful lip. Summer is all about color, experiment with different shades and textures of lip products. I've had a crazy obsession with coral lipsticks. The one I'm wearing obsessively at the time is Dior Addict Extreme lipstick in Saint-Tropez
Down below you will find a tutorial as well. Hope you all enjoy.
Take care.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Today I met the boy I'm going to marry

Thee season is upon us, which season you ask? The bridal season. I've been booked for a few weddings this summer so I thought it would be a great idea to do a series of bridal videos for my viewers.

My sister-in-law was nice enough to model for me. Everyone this is Erin. She and my brother had a surprise wedding in the Fall of 2010. Yes, surprise wedding. They tricked everyone into thinking it was the reception. when it was actually the real deal. They had us thinking that we were going to the Dominican for a destination wedding, little did we know. Honestly, it was a beautiful wedding and they pulled the surprise off flawlessly.  

Gabe and Erin 2010, I took this picture as well.
For this particular look I wanted to do a slightly warmer bridal look, because Erin has blue eyes. I used mostly MAC products, which funny enough I really don't use too often. I think when I first got into makeup I used a few of their products, but I must say I'll be using their products more often. 

Hope you guys enjoy, take care.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Classic Pin-Up Tutorial...and then some

Here we are with a classic pin-up look. It's one of those looks that have been done over and over again on YouTube. Actually, one of my first videos was a classic pin-up tutorial. But due to crappy quality, I had to scratch the video. 

Clarity is absolutely crucial when you're recording videos. If you watch HD on your TV, you should be getting HD quality videos on your computer screen. I find it incredibly annoying when videos are not clear. I want the visual to be SHARP, so sharp I can see the peach fuzz on your face. 

I do get a lot of questions about what camera I use to film my videos. So here is a run down of my equipment details.

For photography and filming I use my trusty Canon Rebel T2i, or if you are in Europe the Canon EOS 550D. It films in HD, so I'm able to get some beautiful shots with it. This camera comes with a standard lens, that being 18-55mm lens f/3.5-5.6 IS. This is the lens that I use to film my favorite and haul videos. For makeup tutorials I always use my Canon 50mm f/1.8 II. This is specifically a portrait lens. This means you cannot get wide angle shots like you would get with the standard 18-55mm lens. In plain English, you can't zoom in, or zoom out. It is specific to taking portrait pictures. Having an aperture of 1.8 allows a lot of light in, which means my images are SHARP.

I'm in the market for the Tamron SP AF 17-50mm f/2.8. I'm finding that the standard 18-55mm lens is just not cutting it for me. I need a greater aperture, and that's where this bad boy comes in. Hopefully a birthday gift to myself this year, we shall see.

If you folks have anymore questions about any of the equipment I use feel free to ask. Don't forget to watch the pin-up tutorial.

Also, let's just make this post a little longer than what it should be. I've recently joined Instagram. Come follow me:


take care.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Who are you bitch, New Lunch?

Azealia Banks, from New York. Sweet baby Jesus, I'm about to lose it.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Amethyst Spring Look

Back again with another spring makeup look. The lovely Meagan was nice enough to model for me, AGAIN. I absolutely love doing makeup on different faces. It gives me the opportunity to practice and learn different techniques. As a free lance makeup artist it makes you excited to see your work come to life. I was excited to do a look with purples and found the perfect palette for it. Dior's 5 color palette did it for me. I've become a huge fan of their color line in the last few months, and I can't get enough. Hopefully I'll be able to do more looks with Dior products in the future.

Hope you enjoy, take care.

All products are listed at the end of the video, take a look!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Seam Foam Green & Gold Tutorial

One of my favorite combinations EVER, sea foam green and gold. My good friend Vicki was kind enough to model for me. What can I say, the look turned out stunning on her. As a subscriber pointed out her eyes are "heart breakingly beautiful". Below you will find all products used. Hope you enjoy.

take care.

Too Faced Eyeshadow Insurance
The Balm Shady Lady Eyeshadow - Kinky Katie
bareEscentuals The Playlist Palette - Max Volume
Sleek Storm Palette
Stila Eyeshadow - La Douce
Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray
Laura Mercier Eyeliner - Antique Jade
Urban Decay 24/7 Eyeliner - Zero
Make Up Forever HD Foundation
Christian Dior New Look Mascara
Buxom Blush - Euphoria
Lorac Take a Brow - Blonde
Smashbox Contour Palette
Benefit Higlighter - Sun Beam
Anastasia Brow Duality
Lorac Perfectly Lit Luminizer - Radiant
Make Up Forever Rouge Artist - #32
Tarina Tarantino Lipstick - Leatherette
Tarina Tarantino Lip gloss - Ruffle

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Luck of the Irish

Just in time for the weekend! I am SO excited for Saint Patty's Day this year, partly because I have the entire weekend off, and it's gorgeous outside! That's right we are sitting in 18 degree weather here in Toronto, so it's going to be a sunny one. This year I'm heading out with a few friends making it an all day event. Starting with Baileys in the morning and doing some fun makeup looks before heading out for the real party. We'll be going to the Roundhouse otherwise known as Steam Whistle Brewery. My boyfriend's twin brother and my roommate is an employee. He'll be working the event, which is pretty cool. I might be doing a slightly different look than my Acid Green tutorial but if you wanted any ideas try taking small parts from the tutorial, or if you're feeling bold do the complete look.

As always please be safe while drinking under the influence. Hope you enjoy.

take care.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Kristen Stewart Vanity Fair Look-France

One of the many things I do while surfing the net is go on gossip blogs. It's a guilty pleasure of mine seeing what celebrities are up to. Plus, it keeps me up to date on what's going on in pop culture. While I was surfing I saw a few candid shots of Kristen Stewart in Paris, France posing for a new Vanity Fair shoot. I absolutely love the dark hair on her, and her makeup was too beautiful to pass up. I shoot a video on what I think is pretty similar to the look above. Products used will be updated soon.

Take care.

Monday, February 20, 2012

I want to go to the beach!

One thing I realize more than anything is that being a brunette can be damn hard sometimes. Being able to have dimension and see it, is almost impossible for me. All I see is a dark endless mop of hair that doesn't want to do me a favor. Recently I decided to take a leap of faith and dye my hair OMBRE style. For those of you who aren't familiar with ombre it's a gradual fade from dark to light. It looks gorgeous on brunettes, and I thought why not, let's try it out. It didn't turn out as light as I wanted it to be, but you don't want to rush this look.

One of the reasons why I wanted to do ombre is the dimension you get from the hair style. It's effortless and has an ease to it. I'm pretty lazy and the tousled beach look fits my life style. My hair is about shoulder length so this gives my hair some volume and prevents me from using too much heat on my hair, as my hair is naturally wavy.

I made a tutorial on how I style my hair everyday. It's very similar to Alexa Chung's hair style and hopefully once I'm done the ombre process my hair color will look pretty similar to hers.

Enjoy the video.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

bareMinerals READY Eyeshadow 8.0

The Playlist

It's been a long long time since I've made a blog posting, I know. No excuses this time. Let's just go a head and jump into it. I'm pretty sure I've made the decision to actually make this into a beauty blog. After all it's the industry I work in and I'd like to think I'm pretty knowledgeable about beauty products. Actually, REALLY knowledgeable. Beauty products are one of the only things I really and truly have a passion for. So it only seemed like the natural thing to do.

I wanted to start reviewing products that I enjoy using so I could share them with you just in case anyone was curious about them. Today's post is going to be about bareMinerals Ready Eyeshadow palette in "The Playlist".

This palette is filled with most beautiful warm tone colors. You get a little bit of everything. Some colors more for a day time look while others are more for a sassy dramatic night time look. It's such a versatile palette and the colors are gorgeously pigmented.

If you don't know much about Bare Escentuals they're a natural company that's been around for quite some time providing the largest mineral collection. Minerals have been a craze in the beauty industry for some time now, but only recently has it begin to grow even more popular. My reasoning behind this is because minerals are a natural alternative to regular makeup. Free of parabens, synthetic dyes, and sulfates it really makes a client more comfortable about what they are applying to their skin. And lets be honest, I think we live in the age of smart consumerism. We want to be more educated about what we put on or in our bodies.

The Playlist palette is actually made of a specific mineral. Now minerals surround us everywhere. They're in soil, water, pretty much anything that comes from the earth. The specific mineral they used in this palette is sea mineral. Sea minerals provide for smooth velvety application, and makes these colors some of the most pigmented pressed powders I've seen on the market. They also provide anti-aging properties that will smooth the eyelid area. As far as lasting power, they stay bright and vibrant with out creasing. Which is the true test for me. Also, big selling factor as a free lance makeup artist, it works on ALL skin tones.

All in all a stellar edition to my makeup collection.

Here's one of my video tutorials where I used the palette on my friend Meagan for a bronzed makeup look. Enjoy.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Emeli Sandé - Daddy ft. Naughty Boy

Wow. Do yourself a favor get her album. Amazing.