What I Learned: Doing Beauty Makeup for a Pro Photographer

This look took me about 5 minutes. Honestly, just 5 minutes. But it was one of my strongest images of that day. Our instincts as makeup artists can be to pile on the makeup, to show what we're capable of. Sometimes, truly, less is more. The goal was to enhance the model's natural beauty and make her look luminous. I used Make Up For Ever's Water Blend foundation and Sculpting Blush. The model came in with a lot of redness and dark circles. Color correction helped tremendously. I didn't want to cover her freckles or hide her skin, which is so fair it's almost translucent.

Working for a professional beauty photographer in New York City definitely pushed me out of my comfort zone. Some of the criticism was harsh, but if you want to grow as an artist, you need to hear that and learn how to grow. In all honesty, you need a thick skin and a gentle hand.

Makeover: Going to Hollywood

Bethany is an aspiring actress who is moving from the Boston area to California to pursue her dreams of becoming an actress.

How I took her from her makeup-free look to her "after" look: I applied a moisturizing and plumping serum to prep her skin and let it set. I hid darkness around her eyes with a peach-toned concealer. A hydrating foundation was applied all over. Contouring powder was applied under her cheekbones, along the sides of her nose, and underneath the tip. A highlighter was applied above the cheekbones. Her eyes, which are close-set, were widened by applying liner with an emphasis on the outer area. Her eyes were emphasized with a neutral base, then I applied a pink-toned, shimmery shadow to the inner corners. Her lashes were played up with a lengthening mascara and falsies applied at the outer edges.

Brands used: It Cosmetics, Kevyn Aucoin Beauty, Maybelline

How to Build the Life of Your Dreams and Save it in the Process

You want to get away. Not just a weekend trip for a short break from the hustle of everyday life. You want to get away.
Maybe that means shedding all of the self that you’ve ever known. Maybe that means ditching the mundane routine you’ve barely muddled through for a decade. Maybe that means looking up and being able to truly appreciate the oddities of a rare beetle or the smell of baking bread without a deadline approaching. Maybe you’re aching for something far deeper.
It starts with getting away. That’s all you know for sure.
Hotel Caribe Town, a rustic bed and breakfast deliberately set five hours away from the nearest international airport in Costa Rica, is really getting away. Don’t just try it for the colorful, soothing d├ęcor or the homemade breakfasts or the personal greeting you get from the owner.
Try it because the owner knows exactly how you feel, and she created a space that’s balm to urban angst.
The owner is a testament of survival and grit, thriving today against ove…

Strivectin Product Review


The Reality of Today's Workforce and the Lessons

I recruit for a company now: This is a job I never sought out or thought I'd have any interest in. I see three types of people: The young job seeker who has plenty of time to turn his or her life around; the older worker whose back is against the wall and is choking down his or her pride; and then there's the older worker who has been in dead-end employment all his or her life and doesn't do anything to get out of the trap. There are probably hundreds of stories behind their respective journeys to this job, stories I wonder about frequently.

I've seen more illiteracy than I ever knew existed in our country. If it looks depressing as a statistic, it's far harder to see in the form of a 58-year-old man whose expression has gelled into a permanent state of despondency. I've seen people who don't know where to start when they see a computer. I've seen people literally scraping for spare change, going hungry, living a hand-to-mouth existence. The irony is t…

Review: L'Oreal Visible Lift Blur foundation

After 25, there are definitely things you might want to "blur." This has become the new buzzword in the makeup industry: Optical illusion through makeup that takes down the appearance of things like fine lines and wrinkles through a "blurring" technique. Call it the reverse HD effect. The product retails for close to $15 (pricey for a drugstore foundation) and comes in a plastic squeeze tube.

This foundation looks great on the skin upon first application. I don't see a visible difference in things like fine lines, nor do I see any lifting effect, but it does create an airbrushed finish. As a cautionary, if you have combination to oily skin, the foundation wears down and separates very quickly. The initial result lasts a short amount of time.

I imagine this product lasts much better on someone with normal to dry skin. It has a moisturizing texture and isn't long-wear. I also don't know that I buy into the "blurring" effect of the product: I re…