Thursday, 29 January 2009

S/09 Paris Couture Shows Roundup

The Paris Couture shows are always a hub of creativity where the most talented designers are invited to send their most outlandish fashion fantasies down the catwalk.

The makeup and hair designed for these theatrical extravaganzas are some of the most creative and experimental looks you will see grace the runways so here is a round up of the Spring 2009 shows.

Armani Prive


Christian Dior

Christian Lacroix

Elie Saab

Jean Paul Gaultier


The makeup looks were a little more somber than we have come to expect which is no doubt yet another nod to the recession however the couture shows are always such an inspiration to me and hopefully for you too.

What do you think of the Spring 2009 Paris shows? Leave a comment and tell me what your favourite look is.

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Picture credits: Alessandro Lucion, Antonello Trio, Greg Kessler, Marcio Madeira, Mateo Volta, Olivier Claisse, Imax Tree, Picture source:

New Work...

Check out these preview shots from the shoot I posted about yesterday....

Photographer: Diana Pai
Model: Christina M @ IMG
Stylist: Io Takemura
Hair: Tomi Hirokono

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Behind The Scenes

All pictures copyright of Diana Pai

Wednesday, 28 January 2009

Behind The Scenes

So I had a very busy and exciting day yesterday working on a location shoot in East London.

Fortunately it was a lovely sunny day so it wasn't too creepy in the grave yard we were shooting at and I was wrapped up in 4 layers of clothing, 2 pairs of socks, gloves, scarf and woolly hat so I wasn't too bothered by the cold!

I cant talk about the shoot too much as it has not yet been submitted to the magazine but I thought I would share a couple of behind the scenes pics I snapped as a sneak preview of what is to come.

I will be sure to come back and post full details of the shoot very soon!

Friday, 23 January 2009

Dressing for the studio: Get the Off Duty Model Look

I have become secretly obsessed by the off duty model look. I don't know how they manage to look so effortlessly cool when they turn up casually dressed for shoots but then again I guess that's why they're models!

Here are some of my favourite Off Duty model pics...

I have tried to incorporate some of their aesthetics into my wardrobe as I like to wear neutral coloured layers on set so I am never too hot or too cold as well a feeling comfortable and stylish. As I don't have legs up to my arm pits it unfortunately just doesn’t always have quite the same effect but I have found some key pieces have become staples in my day wear closet.

Here are some ideas for building your off duty model look.
Model Off Duty Look
Think simplicity, draping, layering, muted colours, strong accessories, vintage, and comfort.

What are the key pieces in your wardrobe and what do you think of the models that sit in your chair? Leave a comment below.

Another important aspect of the Off Duty Model look is beautiful skin. Turning up to shoots with no makeup you want to still look glowing and fabulous so a good skin care regime is essential. Take a look at the skin care I carry in my kit here.

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Wednesday, 21 January 2009

The Bobbi Brown Makeup Manual

Yesterday Sian posted about the new Bobbi Brown Makeup Manual so I thought I would check it out and ended up spending nearly 2 hours sneakily reading it cover to cover in the Starbucks at Borders!

I am not usually one for buying makeup books that show you how to create looks as I think they date quite quickly. I would rather spend my money on fashion magazines and learn by trying to work out how they do the looks myself. That said I loved this new book from Bobbi Brown and would definitely recommend it.

The book starts by going through the basics and shows you how to create looks, talking you through the tools, techniques and products an artist uses and why which is great for newbies or those who are interested in learning to do their own makeup better.

The second part focuses on makeup as a career and I found it to be a really insightful and interesting read. I would go as far as saying its a must read for anyone thing about or starting out in the industry as it gives such great advice on everything from what to expect when working on a fashion show to self promotion and building a kit.

Here are 7 quotes taken from the Makeup Manual that I think are key points to remember if you are pursuing a career as a makeup artist.

"While makeup artists are first and foremost artists, they also need to be business people."

- You can have the skills and talent but I have learnt that you need to be business smart when it comes areas such as negotiating and marketing if you are to get ahead.

"They must be open to learning and growing in their craft."

- I am still pretty new to the industry so I am learning something new every day but I cant ever see a day when I will not continue to learn and grow in an industry that is ever changing.

"A strong knowledge base allows artists to make great choices, see when an application doesn't work and know when to stop."

- I definitely think the sign of a pro is the ability to take anything in their stride no matter what is thrown at them.

"Its not about you. Great makeup artists focus on the client and never let their own egos get in the way."

- If your not happy being behind the scenes makeup probably isn't for you.

"Be nice to everyone."

- This should apply to life in general but as they say its not always what you know but who you know so being friendly could help secure your next booking.

"Once your promotional tools are completed and your portfolio looks great, you need a plan."

- In the book Bobbi Brown says that you need to be focused so you can concentrate on building either your book or your reel.

"No one wants to work with a makeup artist who's kit is dirty and disorganised."

- I think this is pretty self explanatory ;)

Let me know what you think and what points you would add to the list.

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'Influence' by Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen

Get the book on Amazon now... Bobbi Brown Makeup Manual: For Everyone from Beginner to Pro

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Tuesday, 20 January 2009

When Inspiration Strikes: Lady Gaga

Inspiration is everywhere. That’s a fact. But who or what caught my eye this week….

I am in love with the Lady Gaga video for 'Lets Dance' and feel inspired to do a 'too cool for school' club kids shoot every time I catch this on 4Music!

The video also leads my thoughts to the Boombox clubbers that took dressing up to another level and pushed the boundaries with their makeup skills. I am always inspired by these outlandish party goers to think outside the box and have fun with my makeup brushes. Check out Dirty Dirty Dancing to see more from Boombox.

London is such a melting pot for fashion and creativity...I really should get out more often, haha!

Let me know what you think of Lady Gaga and the Boombox ravers, leave a comment.

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Free Delivery on Prints at Photobox

Get free delivery on print orders over £15 at until Thursday.

Discount Code: JANFREEPOST

I recently ordered some 11x14 prints through Photobox and was pleased with the results and the excellent customer service. I think the prices are reasonable, the turn around was super speedy and they were really helpful when I had a question about borders so I thought I would share this offer with you!

If you have any feedback on Photobox or you would like to share your favourite printers with us post a comment below...

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Top 5 Tips for...Portfolio Building

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Monday, 19 January 2009

My 5 Minute Face Makeup Routine

5 Minute Face

I think sometimes people are surprised to hear I am a makeup artist when I meet them as I like to keep my makeup look natural, that is unless I'm out on the town! I do however get lots of comments on how great my skin is which I take as a compliment on my makeup skills as any artist will know that a no-makeup look still takes work.

I like to be comfortable when I'm working and don't want to be thinking about my own makeup so I like to keep things simple. I want to look professional and pulled together whilst still being able to get from the shower to the car in record time when I have an early start.

So as inspired by Maddy at Spunky Product Junkie, here is my 5 Minute Face...

  1. Simple Regeneration Day Cream with SPF15 to moisturise, protect and prep my skin.

  2. Make Up For Ever Face and Body Base buffed into the skin with a Duo Fibre brush and followed by MAC Select Moisture Cover Concealer where needed.

  3. Yaby ES231 matt brown eye shadow in the crease and ES192 in the inner-corner of the eyes to open them followed by eye lash curlers, Maybelline Colossal on the lashes and a brow gel to tidy.

  4. MAC Studio Fix powder over the T-Zone and Yaby Blush in BL002

  5. Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Skin Protectant or Benefit Gloss in 'who are you wearing' to finish (usually applied in the car!).

Why don't you share your 5 minute makeup routine and post a comment below...

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Chapped Lips Be Gone

Friday, 16 January 2009

Little Black Book:


What: Upload your own design or use a template to create business cards, comp cards, letterheads, compliment slips, labels and invitations.

Where: Online in the UK, Germany, Netherlands and International shipping available.

Why: I have been getting my business cards printed at for the past couple of years and have never been disappointed with the service or quality received. have so many templates to chose from so you are sure to find something to suit your business and your style. Templates can be easily edited to customise cards or you can even upload your own design. By uploading your own pictures and text to a postcard template you could also create comp cards.

I have been suckered into the freebies but was really unimpressed by the quality of the printing and card stock. I kicked myself for thinking I could get something for nothing and swiftly reordered with

They often have special offers so I can usually time my reorders to coincide with a 50% deal but even at full price I think they are reasonably priced. They have simple cards starting at around £9 but your looking at a starting price of £15 if you want to customise or upload your design.

I really like the thickness of the card (400gsm) plus the colours and print have always been crisp and clear with the standard card. Lamination, rounded corners and various card options are available such as recycled, textured and gold shimmer but I am happy with the standard cards I order so haven't felt the need to spend more on these added features.

You can order anything from 50 to 20000 cards although I tend to order small quantities so if i need to tweak the design or change any of the information I'm not stuck with lots of cards I cant use.

Standard delivery is 5 days and I have always received within this time frame but if the order is urgent there are other postage options to chose from.

What say?...

Goodprint specialises in making high quality, well designed business cards and associated stationary available to all, at prices that just can’t be beaten. We’ve used the latest technology and coupled that with over 20 years experience in the printing industry to develop a website that allows our customers to get exactly what they want. You can use your own design from any software package, or choose from one of our many thousand templates, and in minutes, create your own products, just the way you want them.

Find out more here.

I am really happy with the cards I get through but id love to hear where you get your cards from and why, so leave a comment below.

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Little Black Book: Muji

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Wednesday, 14 January 2009

Beauty On A Budget: Free Shipping at

Get complimentary ground shipping at on orders over $40 until 19th January 2009 and as always select 3 free samples when you place your order.

Discount Code: NEWYEAR

I would love to get my hands on a bottle of the Ultra Facial Moisturizer as recommended by KJB on!

Got a Kiehls recommendation? Share it with us and leave a comment.

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Beauty On A Budget: Lush 15% Off
Pro Products For Your Kit

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Go Green With Refillable Makeup Palletes

I am big on condensing my kit and love to palletise my makeup to cut down on space and weight but I had never thought that using my refillable pallets was also helping the environment. That was until I came across the Aveda makeup line.

Aveda promote the use of their refillable compacts to "encourage reuse and reduce waste" rather than as a space savers for pros. Most of their makeup products are available to buy in pan form without the compact and they use recycled materials in the packaging they do use. For the environmentally responsible shopper Aveda also have a reusable lipstick tube that can be refilled with their lipsticks. This isn't something for the pros but is a great idea for personal use and something I haven't come across with any other brand.

With this in mind I thought I would share with you some other companies that sell pallets and offer products in the pan only.

Yaby are leading the way for palletised makeup kits with a wide range of sleek pallets that include a stainless steel area for mixing and all makeup products are sold in pans with minimal packaging. For those of you that want to mix and match brands get yourself the Freestyle Palette which has a magnetic base and no dividers so you can fill it with all your favourites regardless of shape and size.

La Femme
Blush, Eye Shadow and 12 Well Palettes are available. The blushes are excellent and good value too!

Nixie have pan only Eyeshadow, Powder and Cream Blush, Powder and Cream Foundation, Powder and a 6 Well Pallet. Nixie get top marks for offering such a wide range of products in pan only form but I would love them to have more pallet size options.

Palettes, Eyeshadow, Sculpting and Shaping Powders, Powder and Cream Blush are available in pan only form. You will need to purchase from a Pro Store or online with a Pro Card. Although MAC have a good range of pan only products I am disappointed that more of the powder and cream based face products are not available without the compacts as they are so bulky. It is also a shame they are only available at the pro stores.

Blush, Dual Finish Foundation, Eyeshadow and Palettes are available for refilling palettes. Graftobian's Dual Finish Foundation palette is top of my wish list at the moment.

Many of the products mentioned can be purchased at Camera Ready Cosmetics who ship internationally.

Aveda really opened my eyes to the waste and unnecessary packaging that we come to expect with makeup and that more companies should be thinking outside the box and offering their products without the packaging.

Do you think this idea could catch on?? Let me know what you think of palletising your makeup.

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Tuesday, 13 January 2009

Beauty On A Budget: Lush 15% Off

Get 15% off at until June 30th 2009!!
Discount Code: GIFTFORYOU09
Got a great Lush recommendation? Share your favourite products by leaving a comment below.

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Tried and Tested: Dermalogica Ultracalming Cleanser

I have recently started using the Dermalogica Ultracalming Cleanser, which I have also added to my skin care kit, and I'm really pleased with its performance.

This cleanser is very gentle and comes in a gel form which feels soothing and refreshing when applied. I like the consistency as it is not too runny and as it is a gel you don't get any greasiness unlike some cream based cleansers I have tried.

You can remove the cleanser by rinsing it off or by using a dry cotton pad which is perfect if your using it in your makeup kit.

It is gentle enough to use around the eye area which I have done with absolutely no stinging or irritation and once removed my skin doesn't feel dry or striped and there is no residue.

I wasn't mad on the smell at first as I prefer a more clean and clinical smell as apposed to floral. This falls somewhere in the middle with a sort of 'natural plant extract' smell but i got over that quickly and don't mind it at all now.

What Dermologica say...

Recommended for environmentally sensitised skin.

An extremely gentle cleansing gel-cream designed to shield against external environmental assaults with Dermalogica’s exclusive Anti-Ozonate Complex. Contains Lavender, Echinacea and Raspberry extracts for their calming properties.

Effectively removes eye makeup and can be either rinsed off or removed with cotton. Leave no irritating residue and is formulated for even the most hypersensitive skin that cannot tolerate water. Contains no artificial fragrance or colour.

Leave me a comment and tell me which cleaner you use and your thoughts on the Dermalogica Ultracalming Cleanser.

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Monday, 12 January 2009

Kate Winslet Thanks Hair and Makeup at The Golden Globes

Kate Winslet stole the show at The 66th Annual Golden Globe Awards last night as she scooped two gongs for her performance in Revolutionary Road and as supporting actress in The Reader.

She will receive great kudos amongst those in the industry for taking time out in her gracious acceptance speech, to not only acknowledge her fellow nominees but to thank the Hair, Makeup and Wardrobe team that worked with her on the film, The Reader.

Best Performance by an Actress In A Supporting Role in a Motion Picture

Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture - Drama

Here are those that she gave a special nod to in her acceptance speech at The 66th Annual Golden Globe Awards.
Ivana Primorac - Hair/Makeup
Linda Melazzo - Hair/Makeup
Alan Dangerio - Hair/Makeup
Pauline Fowler - Prosthetics
Matt Weston Smith - Prosthetics
Ann Roth - Wardrobe

I am such a sap, both her acceptance speeches gave me a lump in the throat! How about you?

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The 66th Annual Golden Globe Awards

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The 66th Annual Golden Globe Awards

As usual not a hair was out of place on the red carpet last night at The 66th Annual Golden Globe Awards.

I am a huge fan of a nude lip dark eye combo for evening and it appears to be the makeup look of choice for celebrities at the Golden Globes this year.

However, those celebrities that decided to channel 'Old Hollywood' for their red carpet appearance and plumped for a slash of colour with a red lip stood out for me. A perfect red lip screams glamour, sophistication and confidence to me which surely is the look you should be going for at a prestigious award ceremony.

January Jones’ (top left) makeup look for the Golden Globes was created by Makeup Artist Rachel Goodwin
My inspiration for January’s Golden Globes make up was really just a very quintessential 1940’s glamour girl look. When I first saw the color of her dress, it had this beautiful old Hollywood feel to it, I wanted the make up to have the same feeling.” continue reading on

Let me know what you think, leave a comment....

Picture Source: Granitz, Wire Images/Jason Merritt, Getty Images/Frazer Harrison, Getty Images

Sunday, 11 January 2009

When Inspiration Strikes: Joshua Petker

Inspiration is everywhere. That’s a fact. But who or what caught my eye this week….

Inspiration struck earlier this week when I came across a post on The Coveted featuring the work of LA based artist Joshua Petker.

Although his work has a dark, melancholy quality to it I was drawn to his bold use of colour and the strokes he used in the paintings. Since stumbling across Joshua's work I have felt compelled to snap out of my squeaky-clean commercial beauty bubble and start experimenting with colour and texture!

What do you feel when you look at this painting. Does it inspire you? Let me know if it rocks your world too and leave a comment!

Further Reading

Manuel Bello interview for

Joshua Petker

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This is the first in a series of weekly posts where I will share with you something that inspires me.

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