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Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Holiday Looks: Merry Berry Christmas

'Tis the season for makeup and recently some of my friends and clients have been asking for red shadow. I am honestly not a fan of red shadow. It is probably the only colour in my pans that remains untouched. But the holidays are too great not to give rich berry hues a try.
First I created a simple red berry eye with a natural pink lip.

Products used:
Black Opal foundation Suede Mocha
Ben Nye Banana powder (I am having a love affair with this one ..more info coming soon)
Mac Blush in Sweet as Cocoa
Mac Brow pencil in Stud
MUFE Flash Colour in red (any red shadow base will do)
Ben Nye Shadow in Red Hot ( matte red)
Sleek Makeup Palette in sunset (I used the matte black as the outer corner,rust on the lid and the champagne colour on the brow bone )
Red cherry LAshes #47
Mac lip pencil in Chestnut
Mac lipstick in Modesty

Inspired by Lisa Eldrige's Matchy Make up tutorial, I followed up this look by amping up the cheeks and lips with some hot berry hues.

Bobbi Brown Cream Blush in Red Berry
Mac lipstick in Port Red
Mac Lipglass in Purple Rage

I may very well stop scowling at the red in my kit and give these hot reds a try in the future. Take a look around your makeup bag and give some of those unloved shadows a shot. Maybe you will be as happy with the results as I am.

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

From Drab to Fab

I wanted for a long time to have a makeup workshop, but just because you feel like talking doesn't mean people feel like listening. And seriously, I am always talking. For years though, my friends have been asking me tons of questions about makeup.
"What foundation should I buy?"
"Where should I buy eyeshadow?"
 "How do I use an eyelash curler?"
 I finally found the right location and the right time and held my first workshop.

 I had a blast and judging from the laughter and the tears of everyone there, they had a blast too.

I tried to cover all the things I remembered I wanted to know.

What people wanted was to have the world of makeup boiled down to simple, easy to understand steps  and of course with solutions for our climate and items that can be found in our market.
Well I had a major challenge. Almost my entire kit came from "over 'n away" and you know why . Not only is availability a problem but  as a mere consumer I don't understand the challenges which face the average retailer. I cannot see how a product which is sold for US$1 can be brought to Barbados and retailed here for BDS$9-$12 .I also don't understand how something bought for US$3 retail is sold here for BDS$25. So as a makeup lover who must beautify on a budget, I choose to purchase elsewhere.

So for the most part I offered information about where my favourite items could be purchased online, how they could be sourced through makeup suppliers in Barbados and where in Barbados you could find a cheaper alternative to those makeup must-haves. We also covered makeup application techniques, selecting  foundation and a slew of tips and tricks from how to get your eyeshadow to last, to how to keep lipstick off your teeth.

 Explaining some of the basics with hands on hips like the school teacher I am :-)
Showing how to apply powder using the brush or cosmetic sponges 
Look people are actually taking notes!!!!!!!!!! lookah me !!!!!!!!!!
Model Sade After

I honestly felt "fussy". The oohs and aaaaahs that come after someone finally understands something were gratifying and knowing that I could help persons to make informed purchases was great.

And of course I had giveaways. Each person received a gift bag with discount vouchers from N2N  and Platinum Touch, an eyeshadow pallette and at the end thanks to an idea from the O2B2 tour Barbados, we had giveaways of 30 different makeup products from Black Opal lip colours and mineralize shadows, to MAC pigments, vouchers for makeup from Beauty Essentials and lots of mascaras, glosses and shadows to supplement the gift bags.
"Heyy that's my ticket I won!!"

 Mother and Daughter eyeing their winnings
Finally a basket of goods with things women actually want !!!!

Our grand prizes were  my favourite makeup DVD the Basics of Beauty by Mr. Sam Fine and a Royal & Langnickel 12 piece brush roll.

The lucky winners

I want to thank everyone who contributed to the class's massive success. At one point I had one room full of clients and in the other a room full of workers, sorting gift bags, helping with refreshment and just being there to support.

Special thanks to
Gregory Broomes
Alexis Gonsalves
Allison Whittaker
Sherry Bradshaw
Ann Clarke (Assistant MUA :-)
Lorreto Duffy-Mayers
Anita Holder

Platinum Touch
Beauty Essentials
Black Opal Cosmetics

Anyone who knows me knows  I can be a bit greedy.. so next time there will be more ...... More giveways .. More fun..... More Fabulousness and More  Next2Natural.

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Getting Naked!

So  I've been hearing and seeing lots of stuff about Naked Cosmetics and with the term "mineral makeup" being on everyone's lips it surprised me that this mineral brand slipped my grasp for so long. I was finally able to get my hands on some items from the Naked brand from Colour Coded Makeup who retail a number of  the collections from the Naked Brand . You can imagine my glee.
Left : Naked Gloss       Right : Naked Shadow Base

Mineral makeup has been gaining popularity among women  the past few years. So dermatologists, makeup artists, and basically everyone and their granny are giving a boost to the sales of mineral makeup .So what's so exciting ??
Mineral makeup comprises of minerals, which are pulverized and sterilized into fine powder form. The makeup is made using zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, and 100%-micronized minerals, which some companies say are free from chemicals that cause inflammation and irritation to the skin.

But beware just because they  slap the word mineral on it doesnt make it magic. Always do your own research and test the makeup in store before you go all out on these sometimes expensive purchases.

When I got my Naked mineral makeup I was excited at the thought of more pigments. On the back of the box Naked even lists ways in which you can use your new pigments. E.g in nail polish, on your lips and even in your hair.

First of all I love the stackable containers.  Long before the iPhone and ipod my friends christened me as Renee iMash-up (you know instead of I-fill) and I have broken many of the Mac stackable pigments but these containers seem a bit tougher and of course I dropped one :-)
The pigments are pretty and shimmery and that’s what I love most about pigments there always seems to be a little more oomph when a colour is loose when compared to its pressed and flat counterpart. That may just be my eyes. This stack is called Mother Nature and contains a blue brown pigment (much like Mac’s Blue Brown) , a tan  coloured pigment with gold flecks, a shimmery gold pigment, a mint green pigment with gold flecks, a rich coppery red colour and white frosty pigment. I looked at the gold, green and red together and I seriously thought oooh I can feel a holiday look coming on.

Here are the swatches

These were just swatched no base, just my chubby little fingers and what a pay off! No sheerness just colour.
I will be spending some quality time with these loved ones over the holidays!!

More excitingly and closer than Christmas is the Sugarpill and Naked Cosmetics Demonar coming up next Friday hosted by Essential Trends and Colour Coded Makeup. Koren and Pursebuzz will be in Barbados as part of their O2B2 tour and will be conducting an informative seminar using these fab pigments . Soooo not only do you get to meet and greet with the gurus you get to hear first hand how to use these pigments and get maximum use from your new products . Even better if three gal pals get together they can register for this exciting evening for a special price of $100 each. A saving of $50 each!!  Included in the registration is a bag of goodies with products from the demonar!  So get registered and Get NAKED! 

And just for my followers.. Next2Natural will be giving away one free ticket to the Demonar next week . So look out for that lucky winner on Wednesday.

Sunday, 11 September 2011

N2N Luxury

When I started learning about makeup a few years ago they were few brands available here in Barbados .Although the selection hasn't improved dramatically what has increased is the consumers knowledge of brands that are available whether here or overseas.  Blame it on marketing,  YouTube, whatever you want . People know now exactly the look they want and the products the stars use to achieve it. 

Some makeup artists may be put off by this kind of client but honestly sometimes it takes the pressure off  me! So often people say I don't know what  I want and I stare at hundreds of shadows, a million lip colours and think "Girl neither do I!" but ever so often there is a girl who has gone online downloaded a Kim K pic and said, " darling  want these eyes and this lip" and I know exactly what she is going for, even if it has to be tweaked to suit her .

It was clients like these that started demanding high end products , airbrush makeup, HD foundations, 'pore-perfekting' products , and luxurious bronzers and I obliged until little by little I had a collection products from moisturisers to mascaras to satisfy the client. 

Don't get me wrong I love me a deal but I must admit I too am a sucker for marketing. I know...I know... As a MUA I must use a discerning eye and follow the research and reviews for products that aren't only high end but work, but I love shiny packaging and  if you smack a little gold dust on something and put on a pretty price tag...somehow I feel it must work and when I put it on I feel like money.

Packaging aside though , thanks to reviews and other avid bloggers I was able to add sensibly to my collection and come up with products which I liked and would satisfy my clients needs for a luxurious finish. .....N2N Luxury

The brands used on this shoot include 
Embryolisse Cleansers and Moisturisers 
Per-fekt  Beauty Skin Perfecting Gel 
Makeup Forever Microperfecting primers, HD powders, lip pencils, aqualiners
Clinique shadows and Mascaras 
Dior Mascaras
Temptu Airbrush Foundation
Graftobian HD foundation
Nars Blushes
Cargo Bronzers
Skindinavia Setting sprays 

I will continue to add to N2N Luxury . I already have my eye on the Guerlain  and Illamasqua holiday collections . You may not need expensive everyday but every once in a while everyone deserve a little luxury. N2N Luxury.

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

The Ramjits

I got the opportunity to work as the makeup artist on a photo shoot  with the Ramjit sisters. In Barbados Ramona , Rhea and Regina have been staples on the pageant and fashion scene. They have been collecting crown and titles for years. I first met the bubbly and exciting Regina and collaborated with her on shoots before  but this time all three sisters were on the island and the opportunity to shoot with them presented itself and I was more than willing to take part.

A previous shoot with Regina
(Photographer Brian Elcock)

For their makeup I wanted to let their natural beauty shine through and I am currently on a coral kick!! I don't know when this colour became so hot but I am glad that it did. I used Temptu Airbrush  foundation on Regina and Ramona and a coral coloured La femme blush. Rhea's deeper tones called for my favorite Black Opal Foundation and  used Nars Taj Mahal Blush  on her cheeks for a warm glow. On their eyes I used Clinique's  shadow Like Mink on the lashline and blended into the coral  toned Sunburst shadow. I used Clinique's Daybreak shadow as a highlight.

I cant get enough of the OCC lip tars and I used the  varying mixtures of Beta, Grandma and Safety Orange to personalise each girls lips for her skin tone.

Here are the results.

(Photographer : Jaryd Niles-Morris)

(Photographer : Jaryd Niles-Morris)

I had a blast working with the Ramjit sisters and always have a great time behind the scenes with their mum Ruth.

It started out Okay.....

....but it got dark very quickly!!

Final shots
Thanks again girls.

Thursday, 4 August 2011


Kadooment Day for me is fabulous . Its one of the few days that ladies will actually let me apply glitter, rhinestones  and lashes without raising eyebrows.My day usually starts for me around 3am and goes straight to 10:30 am, then I head ontp the streets. No sitting, no drinking, just glitter and craziness.

If you notice that these pix looks extra sleek  just know that I did NOT become a photographer .. my buddy Brian of Bcreativephotography took them .Check out his stuff here

                                 Studio Before                                                    Studio After

This year on twitter I saw the offerings of Xotic Eyes. A company which produces gorgeous glitter appliques for the eyes and body .My first plan was to starve myself lose 100 pounds and wear it myself on kadooment day.Sanity prevailed and I spoke to a girl I saw  at work and when I showed her the pieces  and she was thrilled  and decided to create her own costume with the pieces.
Two days before Kadooment we realised we needed more appliques to cover her body with none to be had on the island. Fortunately I was able to use  latex and glitter to replicate the look .These pieces we attached to her body with spirit gum.

the ones I made covered her legs, hands and added to her bikini bottom.

We use glitter and a special glitter glue on her eyes instead of the xotic eyes and placed it just under her lash line.

  Allison adding rhinestones and oil sheen .  Alexis spraying Dermacolor fixing spray to her face.

After seeing how well hers turned out, I made one for my face.

All about the peacock feathers

This year the packages I offered ranged from $40-$60 and included breakfast. We had coffee, tea, juice, chocolate coconut cake balls, coconut cake, orange marmalade gingerbread and fishcakes. It will be even better next year!

Following the coffee some got a little hype and started the party early.

In the end 20 girls got bedazzled and I want to thank all my friends and family for helping out , Gregory, Felicia, Alexis, Allison , Sherry and Hal  :-)

On the Road

Christina on the Road

Sharice's pieces stayed on all day as did her makeup and glitter .. Only one tata cover became loose in the rain ( not the ones I made :-)

All eyes on me!! Look at the guys in the background!

Commission work for the Contact Band

To all the ladies who came out,  Thank You . Next year will be bigger and better !! I am planning already.