#MakeupMonday – Anatomy of a Kit Prep

makeup to go blog tania d russell makeup artist makeup educator beauty writer los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup artist anatomy of a kit prep


…One thing about being a freelance makeup artist…

is that two days are rarely ever the same. If you follow my makeup artist feed on Instagram, you’ve seen many posts of my various makeup kits and set-ups. More often than not I am carrying this kit because I’m working with one of my commercial clients and my needs are smaller and I can carry a more curated kit. Every once in a while, however, I need to carry the entire kit and caboodle, so to speak. This requires some kit prep in order to be ready for my gig.

There are certain things I ALWAYS do before a job, and some things that I do that are specific to the job I’m working on.

Kit Prep I Always Do BEFORE A Job
– Wash makeup brushes
Barbicide Hair Brushes/Tools
– Wipe down palette surfaces and lotion/bottle openings with alcohol
– restock liquids and consumables (alcohol, brush cleaner, tissues, sponges, cotton swabs, etc.)

notice how all but one pertains to kit sanitation, which as I mentioned in a past post I take very seriously. I need everything to be clean, dry and ready BEFORE I show up for a job therefore I generally take care of all of these things when I get home from my previous job (i.e. – I did all of this Friday night so that come Sunday morning everything was dry and ready).

On Emmys weekend I was booked to work with the brand Gwynnie Bee on a combo photoshoot/Emmys watch party. Major influencers were there along with two major celebs so it was a high profile event. Nothing I haven’t done before, however, I’d not worked with this client before and I also wasn’t entirely sure how many talent I would ultimately end up working on. Therefore, I also had special kit prep for this specific job. This was one of those jobs where I had to a) have Top Shelf product b ) my presentation had to be on point (which it should be at all times anyway), and C ) I had to be prepared for any and everything.

makeup to go blog tania d russell makeup artist makeup educator beauty writer los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup artist anatomy of a kit prep LORAC pro 1 and 2 retail packaging

makeup to go blog tania d russell makeup artist makeup educator beauty writer los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup artist anatomy of a kit prep LORAC pro 1 and 2 MUFE palette

LORAC PRO eyeshadow palettes 1 & 2 depotted into Make Up For Ever large empty palette
Something I’ve wanted to do for more than a minute is depot anything that’s currently in a retail palette/package into a Pro empty palette. Why? First of all, space. When you’ve gotta bring the kitchen sink you need as much product to fit into as compact a space as possible. It’s also easier to see what I have in a palette like this as opposed to 50-lebbin little individual palettes. Secondly, on the real, retail packaging was not meant for the abuse of traveling around in a pro kit and they usually end up looking like crap. Look at those LORAC palettes and then look at the Make Up For Ever palette. Which one looks better? Yeah. Presentation matters.

PRO TIP: The LORACs came out easily because the body is cardboard and foam. For products in plastic packaging you will need more finesse so as to not damage your product.

PRO TIP 2: Non-pros; make a palette out of your powders and creams (eyeshadows, blushes, bronzers, highlighters, etc) and packing your makeup for trips will be a breeze!

makeup to go blog tania d russell makeup artist makeup educator beauty writer los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup artist anatomy of a kit prep nars pro palette small

makeup to go blog tania d russell makeup artist makeup educator beauty writer los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup artist anatomy of a kit prep NARS pro palette custom blush palette deep skin tones


NARS Blushes in NARS Small Pro Palette
Likewise, as I’ve mentioned in numerous past posts, I needed to get it together with my blush choices for deep complexions. This palette was the Belle of the Ball as many of the influencers fell into the color range and I thoroughly enjoyed showing them how to play with blush colors to get different effects. As mentioned in my SF Haul post, the powder colors are Desire, Taj Mahal, Exhibit A and Seduction. In addition I added two cream blushes; Enchanted – which I love as a subtle highlight on pretty much every skin tone, and the mighty Montenegro which is just Flat. Out. Gorgeous.

DEPRESSING NEWS: Typical NARS-ness, they seem to have discontinued their cream blushes. 🙁 If you find them on eBay or somewhere, nab them. And add Penny Lane, too.

PRO TIP: I always label my palettes. A ) so I know what’s in it, but also B ) I love everyone but I want it to be clear that this item belongs to me. This is particularly important when you’re working in close quarters with other artists.

makeup to go blog tania d russell makeup artist makeup educator beauty writer los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup artist anatomy of a kit prep kit compartments

Kit Organized into individual ZUCA Utility Pouches
Once I have everything streamlined and organized, it’s time to pack it up. I know some artists just put things wherever in their kits and I don’t judge (well, maybe a little….OK I do…), but I cannot work that way. It slows me down too much if I have to look for things, so I compartmentalize HARD CORE. Every category has its own bag, that way when I get to location and see where I’m going to be set up I only pull out what I need and I can leave the rest on standby. Pictured here are my foundation/concealer bag, color products bag, and my eyelashes bag which saw a LOT of action on this job! Other main compartment bags in my kit are skincare, powders, cream blushes, and pencils. And actually right after this job I ordered another ZUCA pouch so I can split up the color products (one for eyes, one for cheeks/lips).

And the final outcome…

makeup to go blog tania d russell makeup artist makeup educator beauty writer los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup artist anatomy of a kit prep final set up

Lean, mean, makeup machine. Not pictured is my suitcase which I was able to put neatly under my worktable in the event I needed something that I didn’t pull out of my kit. Different jobs require different kits but one thing remains the same: A well-prepped kit = a happy makeup artist.

PRO TIP: It is INCREDIBLY important to be clean, organized and efficient on your jobs, but particularly those with high profile clients.

PRO TIP 2: MANY MANY THANKS to Make Up For Ever for providing product for me for this event!

Do you change kits depending on your jobs or does your kit remain the same? How to you prep before your jobs?

—-
Have you signed up for the Makeup to Go Blog newsletter yet? Join the fun for exclusive content, giveaways, and other assorted fabulosity! Makeup to Go Blog Newsletter – “Speaking of Makeup”

#MaquillajeLunes – Delia’s Take PHAMExpo 2016

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016

Longtime readers of Makeup to Go will remember “Maquillaje Para Go”…

written by my makeup buddy and Blogstress En Español Delia Jimenez Owens. Well Delia is BACK! It took some convincing and I may have had to rough her up just a bit in a dark alley, but I got her to write a lil sumthin sumthin for us. To get the ball back rolling, here’s Delia’s Take PHAMExpo 2016. Let us hope this marks the return of regular contributions from miss Del. (scroll down to read in English)

Fue un gran fin de semana en el PHaMExpo. Una de las primeras cosas que noté fue que el show parecía un poco más pequeña de lo que recuerdo del año pasado. Aparte de eso, fue sin duda la calidad sobre la cantidad. Había unos cuantos nuevos vendedores que tuve la oportunidad de visitar, así como algunos profesionales de la industria que tenía ganas de escuchar. Lo hice a tiempo para coger la última hora de Pro ofrecido en show y no me decepcionó. Uno de los vendedores que estaba emocionada de ver eran las personas de Smith Cosméticos. Tengo su Smithfolio y necesitaba comprar unas paginas extra por ello. Si usted no sabe lo que el Smithfolio es, es básicamente una cuaderno que contiene 4 páginas o “plates”. Los plates pueden sostener brochas, brillos de labios, lápices labiales y que incluso tienen algunas paginas de malla que pueden contener materiales desechables o cualquier otros elementos sueltos. Es una joya para la organización. A pesar de que estaban fuera de la pagina que quería, me he comprado otros dos y estoy muy satisfecho con mi compra.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 delia jimenez owens maquillaje para go Delia's Take PHAMExpo 2016 smithfolio smith cosmetics

Smithfolio inserts by Smith Cosmetics (click to see larger)


Un nuevo descubrimiento para mí era Dep Make-Up. Tenían una buena visualización de las pestañas y barras de labios líquidos en tonos muy agradable así que por supuesto que tenía que conseguir algunas de las barras de labios. Tengo que decir que me quedé muy impresionada. Literalmente duró para siempre. Incluso después de comer y beber y dormir con él puesto. Se me hizo un poco seqo, pero un poco de chapstick ayudó con eso.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 delia jimenez owens maquillaje para go Delia's Take PHAMExpo 2016 dep makeup

DEP Makeup lashes (click to see larger)


Después de un poco de compras en el primer día, hice tiempo para sentarme en la conferencia de un artista muy conocido en la industria, Patti Dubroff. La he escuchado hablar un par de veces en diferentes eventos y nunca decepciona. Ella es abierta y honesta acerca de la industria y no se contiene. Ella nos llevó a través de las diversas etapas de su carrera y lo que la llevó a llegar a donde está hoy. A pesar de que ella no era espisifica, hablo acerca maquillaje y los medios sociales. Eso pareció abrir una lata de gusanos por que varias preguntas acerca de su opinión sobre “artista de maquillaje” en las redes sociales. La única cosa que puedo decir acerca de esto es que ella básicamente dijo lo que cada artista de maquillaje profesional (y por el profesional, me refiero a los que se ganan la vida haciendo el maquillaje) ha pensado: Hacer maquillaje en sí mismo, no necesariamente quiere decir que es un artista de maquillaje profesional.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 delia jimenez owens maquillaje para go Delia's Take PHAMExpo 2016 pati dubroff

Termine el día con una visita a la cabina de fotos NYX donde Tania y yo nos tomamos esta imagen fabulosa. También dejamos con su nuevo rimel Doubel Stacked Mascara.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 delia jimenez owens maquillaje para go Delia's Take PHAMExpo 2016 NYX cosmetics double lash mascara

El segundo día estaba a punto de reunirme con viejos amigos y conocer otros nuevos. Por supuesto que me detuvo en el stand de Embyrolisse y consegui crema hidratante. También compré su tratamiento radiante de ojos. He oído muchas cosas acerca de este y no puede esperar para probarlo.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 delia jimenez owens maquillaje para go Delia's Take PHAMExpo 2016 embryolisse

goodies from Embryolisse (click to see larger)


Una parada se hizo también en el stand de Gleam by Melanie Mills, donde me encontré con mi amigo y compañero artista de maquillaje Melanie Ramírez. Mel nos mostró una demostración de cómo los polvos GMM y cómo se puede utilizar como ilumindadores de todo el cuerpo.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 delia jimenez owens maquillaje para go Delia's Take PHAMExpo 2016 melanie gleam cosmetics melanie mills

fab artist Melanie Ramirez working the Gleam by Melanie Mills booth


Uno de los vendedores que estaba feliz de ver era China Glaze. He estado esperando para añadir a mi colección de laca de uñas y este era el momento perfecto. Tenían un surtido de colores y tratamientos de uñas y sus precios eran más que razonable. Véase más abajo para una foto de mi recorrido China Glaze.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 delia jimenez owens maquillaje para go Delia's Take PHAMExpo 2016 nails fingernails nailart china glaze

PHAME has nail vendors, too. China Glaze polishes (click to see larger)


La última parada estaba sentada en la conferencia de Melanie Inglessis. Ella habló acerca las agencias y ser asistente y cómo ha llegado a donde está ahora siendo una de las superior maquillistas en Los Angeles. Una cosa que menciono que realmente se me hizo impact, era como ella fue asistente por casi 14 años antes de que ella se fue por su cuenta. Realmente perfecciono su arte y ayudó a muchos artistas superior para llegar a donde está hoy. Ella ofreció sugerencias sobre cómo ayudar a los artistas de la agencia (comuniquese con la agencia) y las expectativas de ser asistente. Siempre me gusta escuchar lo que Melanie tiene que decir porque ella es tan generosa en compartir sus conocimientos sobre la industria .

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 delia jimenez owens maquillaje para go Delia's Take PHAMExpo 2016 melanie inglessis

celebrity makeup artist Melanie Inglessis

En general, disfruté de mi experiencia en PHaME este año. Tengo la sensación que este programa sólo va a mejorar con el tiempo. Espero para el próximo año para ver que tienen en sus paneles y que nuevos vendedores van a tener.

Delia Jiménez Owens es una artista de maquillaje y pelo disponible, en los angeles y las vegas. Puede seguidor en Twitter en @ DeliaJOwens

—-

It was a great weekend at the PHamExpo. One of the first things I noticed was that the show seemed somewhat smaller than I remember from years past. That aside, it was definitely quality over quantity. There were a few new vendors that I was able to visit as well as some top industry professionals that I was looking forward to listening to. I made it in time to catch the last Pro hour offered on the show room floor and I was not disappointed.

One of the vendors I was excited to see were the folks from Smith Cosmetics. I have their Smithfolio and needed to buy a few extra plates for it. If you don’t know what the Smithfolio is, it’s basically a zipper folder that holds 4 pages or “plates”. The plates can hold brushes, lip glosses, lip pencils and they even have some mesh plates that can hold disposables or any other loose items. It’s a gem for organization. Although they were sold out of the plate I wanted, I bought two others and am very satisfied with my purchase.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 delia jimenez owens maquillaje para go Delia's Take PHAMExpo 2016 smithfolio smith cosmetics

Smithfolio inserts by Smith Cosmetics (click to see larger)


A new find for me was Dep Make-Up. They had a nice display of lashes and liquid lipsticks in really nice shades so of course I had to get a few of the lipsticks. I have to say, I was very impressed. It literally lasted forever. Even after eating and drinking and sleeping with it on. It did dry out a little on me, but a little chapstick helped with that.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 delia jimenez owens maquillaje para go Delia's Take PHAMExpo 2016 dep makeup

DEP Makeup lashes (click to see larger)


After a little shopping on the first day, I made time to sit in on celebrity artist, Patti Dubroff’s lecture on the industry. I have listened to her speak a few times at different events and she never disappoints. She is up front and honest about what the industry and doesn’t hold back. She took us through the various stages of her career and what it took her to get where she is today. Although she didn’t get specific with it, she did touch on make-up and social media. That seemed to open up a can of worms as various questions were asked about her opinion on ” make-up artist” on social media. The only thing I can say about this is that she basically said what every professional make-up artist (and by professional, I mean those that make their living doing make-up) has been thinking: Doing make-up on yourself, doesn’t necessarily make you a professional make-up artist.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 delia jimenez owens maquillaje para go Delia's Take PHAMExpo 2016 pati dubroff

I wrapped up the day with a visit to NYX photo booth where the Tania and I took this fab picture. We also left with their new NYX Double Stacked Mascara.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 delia jimenez owens maquillaje para go Delia's Take PHAMExpo 2016 NYX cosmetics double lash mascara

Day two was about meeting up with old friends and meeting new ones. Of course I stopped at the Embyrolisse booth and stocked up on moisturizer. I also purchased their Radiant Eye treatment stick. I’ve heard many great things about this and cant’ wait to try it out.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 delia jimenez owens maquillaje para go Delia's Take PHAMExpo 2016 embryolisse

goodies from Embryolisse (click to see larger)


A stop was also made at Gleam by Melanie Mills booth where I ran into my friend and fellow make-up artist Melanie Ramirez. Mel showed us a demo of how the GMM powders and how it can be used as highlighters all over the body.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 delia jimenez owens maquillaje para go Delia's Take PHAMExpo 2016 melanie gleam cosmetics melanie mills

fab artist Melanie Ramirez working the Gleam by Melanie Mills booth


One of the vendors I was happy to see there was China Glaze. I’ve been wanting to add to my nailpolish collection and this was the perfect time. They had an assortment of colors and nail treatments and their prices were more than fair. See below for a snap shot of my China Glaze haul.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 delia jimenez owens maquillaje para go Delia's Take PHAMExpo 2016 nails fingernails nailart china glaze

PHAME has nail vendors, too. China Glaze polishes (click to see larger)


Last stop was sitting in on Melanie Inglessis lecture. She spoke about agencies and assisting and how she got to where she is now being one of the top celebrity make-up artist in Los Angeles. One thing she mentioned that really stood out to me, was how she assisted for almost 14 years before she went off on her own. She put time in to really perfect her craft and assisted many top artist to get where she is today. She offered suggestions as to how assist agency artists (contact agency) as well as went over assistant expectations. I always enjoy listening to what Melanie has to say because she is so generous in sharing her knowledge on the industry.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 delia jimenez owens maquillaje para go Delia's Take PHAMExpo 2016 melanie inglessis

celebrity makeup artist Melanie Inglessis


Overall, I really enjoyed my experience at PHaME this year. I have a feeling this show is only going to get better with time. I look forward to next year to see who they will have on their educational panels and which new vendors join the fun!

Delia Jimenez Owens is a makeup and hair artist available in both Los Angeles and Las Vegas. You can follow her on Twitter @DeliaJOwens.

—-
Have you signed up for the Makeup to Go Blog newsletter yet? Join the fun for exclusive content, giveaways, and other assorted fabulosity! Makeup to Go Blog Newsletter – “Speaking of Makeup”

Baby Remember My Name – PHAMExpo 2016

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016

it was busy this year…remember PHAMExpo is open to the public and all makeup-istas are welcome 🙂


PHAMExpo is creating a niche

…and staking its claim amongst the Titans of the makeup tradeshows….Last weekend, June 5 & 6, PHAMExpo 2016 marked my return to the PHAMExpo. I missed last year due to technical difficulties but I hear it was the best yet so I was eager to reconnect. The fine folks at PHAMExpo were so kind as to provide passes to myself and my blogstress En Español, Delia, so away we went for both days.

Overall impressions are the PHAMExpo is distinguishing itself not only by including hair and nails but also by bridging together the increasingly disparate aspects of the beauty biz; the Influencers and the Artists. That’s a tall order as the two sides – while we utilize the same medium (makeup) – don’t really speak the same language and there were times when that really showed.

For this show I had three objectives; hit the shopping floor and see as many of the new brands as I could, visit with my regular vendors who were in attendance, and see 3 of the Keynote Speakers who stood out to me. I was successful with all tasks! If you don’t care about all my wordiness 😉 , please skip ahead as my “Haul” pictures come at the end of the article. But first, the speakers. I must apologize to the folks I saw on Day One, I forgot to bring my real camera so I had to iPhone it :\ …


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 editorial avant garde with a purpose roshar

Roshar and his completed demo creation (he made the headpiece, too)


I’ve known Roshar for quite some time (he even shouted me out during his demo!), and it’s been fantastic to see how his career has blossomed. Hard work pays off!


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 pati dubroff pati preema

Pati Dubroff was inspiring as always…


Pati “Prema” Dubroff is one of my personal favorite artists and has been for quite some time so I always enjoy her whenever I hear her speak. Another big benefit of PHAMExpo – at least for right now – is that since it is a smaller show the Keynotes are more intimate, there is more time for Q and A, and people actually have time to speak to the presenters after they’ve finished. One of the things Pati spoke of that really touched me personally was how this industry is filled with highs and lows and part of being a working artist is just getting through it and pushing forward. Boy is it ever, and I really needed to hear that. Thanks Ms. Dubroff!


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 melanie inglessis

Melanie Inglessis keeping it all the way real


The last speaker I really wanted to make sure I caught was Melanie Inglessis. A fixture in the celebrity makeup scene, she tends to A-listers attending everything from the Academy Awards to the Met Ball. Like Pati Dubroff, she was just very real and honest. One of the things she was most honest about is working with celebrities and how you do not always get to work the way you want to or do what you want to do. In yielding to make a celeb comfortable, you may have to compromise your work (i.e. – they’re constantly looking down at their cellphone and you just have to work around it or risk not being booked again). The other thing she mentioned is something I repeat like a mantra when I’m teaching; In order to really grow a career you need to NUTURE a specific path – Melanie Inglessis @ PHAMExpo . You can switch streams if you want, but you cannot grow a career doing a “little bit of this” and a “little bit of that”.

NOW – An example of how the Influencers and the Artists worlds do not always align;

Pati spoke on Saturday and Melanie spoke on Sunday and yet during both Keynotes, one of the vendors on the floor (a very popular brand) was throwing items out into the crowd waiting in line and there were VERY loud bursts of screaming. So loud that even though the main stage was on the opposite side of the convention hall, you could not hear the Keynote speakers during these outbursts and in fact both ladies were distracted by it. The crowd that wants to stand in line while someone throws out product is not the same crowd that wants to hear two premiere artists speak about their careers. Something to think about going forward.

OK – soapbox over, on to the Haul 😉 One of the things I really enjoy about PHAMExpo is that since they are a slightly smaller show (for now), they still have room for smaller, indie brands that the Big Guys don’t.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 smith cosmetics smith brushes makeup brushes

FABULOUS brushes from Smith Cosmetics


One of my main goals was to visit the Smith Cosmetics booth after hearing so much about their brushes and the Smithfolio. I have no use for a Smithfolio, but y’all know I’m a brush fanatic. I LOVE the way these feel in hand. The handles are uniquely shaped to sit perfectly in hand and they are just weighted enough to have gusto without being heavy. I cannot WAIT to use these and I will give a report when I do…

(click on image for color names)

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 stephen dimmick glossi girl cosmetics

#lipstickgoals…click for color names


My other goal was to FINALLY get the Glossigirl Cosmetics lipsticks! They were at a great show price so I did not miss my chance (for whatever reason I didn’t strike when they were at IMATS). These lipsticks are creamy, rich, highly pigmented sticks of vegan yumminess. And the colors are amaze and the mixing possibilities are endless. Again, I cannot WAIT to try these on a job soonT!


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 aboni cosmetics

SERIOUS liquid lipcolors from Aboni cosmetics


Let me say right now that I am a lipcolor fiend, and I realized after the show that almost everything I looked at and bought was a lipcolor of some kind. LOL! Anyway, Aboni Cosmetics was a new line at the show. When I went back to purchase the color I had my eye on, they were sold out 🙁 But let me tell you; these colors do NOT come off.

(click on image for color/brand names)

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 aboni cosmetics, dep makeup

These did NOT want to come off!…click to see whose who…


They do Not. Come. Off. This was my hand after several washings (as I’m sure you can tell). Eventually two of the colors wore down (not all the way off) but two of them (the dark maroon and the bright teal) I had to use coconut oil to take off before I went to bed. So if you need lipcolor that goes on and on and onon and on and it don’t stop ’till the break of dawn…

(click on image for color names)

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 dep makeup

I feel in love with Dep Makeup’s liquid lipcolors and their booth was super cute too. These are probably not going into my kit…we’ll see… 😉 Click to see color names…


The other brand that did not come off in the hand swatch above was DEP Makeup. I was drawn in by their overall presentation. The booth was well laid out, the packaging is pretty, they had a DJ, a guy was doing the My Boo Running Man, it was just a great booth. And then the colors of the liquid lippie were fab AND as you can see, they last. Nice find.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 stilazzi frends beauty

Stilazzi brushes, exclusive to Frends Beauty


Brushes and lips, lips and brushes. lol. I was more intrigued by the brush shape of these Stilazzi brushes than the fiber (feels like some type of synthetic or possibly a synthetic mix). I do like the weight and shape of the handles, although white handles in a Pro kit – dunno about the upkeep on these. We shall see. Anyway, Stilazzi brand is exclusive to Frends Beauty and I like supporting my homies at Frends so that’s groovy… Speaking of homies there were a lot of my fab people in attendance working the various booths, or just in attendance supporting the show. Always fab to run into folks…


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 kevyn aucoin, frends, embryolisse

@sameetatu, @cristallewellynmua, @purelycosmetics & @yvelissamunoz looking fab at PHAMExpo


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 sharon gault

Fab ladies, fab artists (Sharon Gault and another artist who is familiar to me but I don’t know her name 🙁 )

Bonblissity was another booth that drew me in with it’s fabulousness. I usually completely ignore non-makeup booths but the setup was so nice AND the product REALLY works. I didn’t even need lotion after he finished with the scrub on my hands. (and yes they had a fully functional sink in their booth!)


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016  skincare scrubs bonblissity

cute and functional skin scrubs from Bonblissity


Towards the end of Day 2 when I could no longer think I ran into the Stefania Organics booth which drew me in with it’s intoxicating aroma. There were two new brush cleaner brands on site at the show and if my brain had been turned on, this is the one I would have purchased (I noticed that most of my makeup artist friends chose the other one which was very nice as well). Even if I didn’t like it as a brush cleaner it also works as a hand sanitizer and all 4 of the scents were A M A Z I N G. All natural, essential oil based, none of that synthetic scent garbage. Why I didn’t just buy this at the time is BEYOND ME because I’ve been regretting it ever since. That Lemongrass based Queen of Hearts scent was a Tania magnet. In fact let me go place an order after I post this article… Delia got a sample in her gift bag so she’ll write about it I’m sure in her PHAMExpo post which will go live on Monday


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 stefania organics brush cleaner hand sanitizer

the team of Stefania Organics brush cleaner and hand sanitizer in one!


I told you I bought lips and brushes and brushes and lips. LA Girl – of the famed “Pro” HD Concealer – was on hand. While I do like the concealer as a highlighter on women of color (I don’t actually think its great as a concealer), I was more interested in their lip colors. The Glazed Lip Paints come in great nudes and bright poppy colors and at the show they were too inexpensive not to try. They are similar in texture and finish to OCC Lip Tars, but I need to read if these are vegan like OCC.

(click on image for color names)

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco phamexpo 2016 la girl cosmetics la girl glazed lip color

fun colors from LA Girl cosmetics…click to see color names


All in all I definitely had a great weekend! While there were little tweaks I would make to the show to suit my perfect world ;), I definitely think PHAMExpo is a show well worth attending for pros and consumers alike. I look forward to doing so again next year.

(NOPE – this isn’t a sponsored post. The fine folks at PHAMExpo provided passes but otherwise they did not know if I’d go, if I’d shop and/or if so what I’d purchase, nor did they do not know whether or not I’d do a post on the show. As a pro artist, I try to cover all of the makeup trade shows.)

—-
Have you signed up for the Makeup to Go Blog newsletter yet? Join the fun for exclusive content, giveaways, and other assorted fabulosity! Makeup to Go Blog Newsletter – “Speaking of Makeup”

#BizTalk – Taking Your Makeup Kit From Student to Pro

makeup to go blog Los Angeles makeup San Francisco makeup Tania d Russell taking your makeup kit from student to pro

I was asked to make a post specifically about taking your kit from student to Pro, and I wanted to be sure to do so before this weekend’s The Makeup Show trade show. This one goes out to all of my Emerging Artists who are finishing up makeup school and about to head out into the Real Makeup World. If you’re just starting out DIY-style and didn’t go to a makeup school, hopefully this helps you as well. 🙂

makeup to go blog taking your makeup kit from student to pro

…but one of the many variations of my working makeup kit…


Ahh product. Product is great. Don’t you love it? I sure do. And lucky us, as makeup artists we legitimately need product to do our work. HOWEVER product is but ONE piece of the financial puzzle of growing a makeup business. Obviously, buying new makeup is the fun piece of the puzzle, right? But buying makeup because you actually have JOBS is even more fun. And getting jobs means doing what it takes to get booked as a freelancer. Thus, when transitioning from a student to a Pro, you have to resist the temptation to just wildly buy AllOfTheThings and develop a plan of investing in and building your kit.

[pullquote width=”300″ float=”left”]A lot of would-be artists never make it because they tether themselves financially and cannot afford to invest in their makeup business[/pullquote]

Let me say that again for the folks in the back: If you do not allocate the money necessary to grow your business, you will soon be out of business.

What are these business expenses of which I speak?

– Promotions (business cards, promo cards, your website, a digital or print portfolio, etc.)
– Continued Education
– Trade Shows
– Testing and/or low budget projects (if a job isn’t making you money, it’s costing you money, period.)
– Job opportunities (??? Yep. As a freelancer many jobs require money spent up front (travel, accommodations, special items like Wigs, etc.) and then you’ll be paid back when the client pays your invoice.)
– Transportation to and from tests and jobs including parking, tolls, train fees (BART goes up seemingly every time in working in the SF Bay Area).
– Business and personal insurance
– Liscensing and/or professional fees where applicable
– Taxes (as a freelancer you pay business tax and eventually you’ll be kissing those refunds goodbye)

If I took the time to think I could probably come up with 5 more things to add to this list. Also, be mentally prepared for the fact that – at least for those of us who work in media makeup – you will likely NOT be paid right away. Sometimes you can negotiate for that, but more often than not you will invoice a client and the industry standard is that they have 30 days to pay you. Some international jobs take 60-90 days. And real talk: 30 days often means 40-45 days. Therefore maintaining your cashflow so you can keep going is one of the most important aspects of becoming and staying a freelance artist.

How would I suggest proceeding thoughtfully and wisely with taking your makeup kit from Student to Pro? Here we go…

1) First Things First
Without any doubt, when you are first coming out of school the two main things you need to invest in are your foundation/skin products and your tools. The inter-webs are constantly inundating you, as a young artist, with the latest greatest thing that is supposed to take you from rank amateur to superstar makeup artist in five seconds. But do you really need a new gadget to help you clean your brushes when you haven’t invested in good brushes yet? Do you really need a new doodad to give you a “flawless foundation finish” when you don’t have a full selection of foundations yet? If you get called to a job and you find you do not have the proper color foundation for your client you’re going to wish you had bought foundation instead of some silly thing to clean your brushes. And PLEASE do NOT forget skincare!!!!! Your preparation prior to applying makeup can be more important than the makeup application itself. This is a time where cheap-o drugstore brands will largely NOT get it done (although there are a few exceptions). Quality skincare will absolutely, positively elevate your makeup applications.

2 ) Think Like A Pro
If you’re saying you’re a pro makeup artist then it is time to start thinking like one. The latest greatest products do not necessarily work for us. Mass-market/drugstore brands do not necessarily work for us. Does the caliber of product I am using correlate with the work that I am doing? (i.e. – if I’m doing a $150 headshot job, is now the time to pull out my $80 Tom Ford foundation?) When I open my kit am I making a good presentation/first impression to my client? These are all things that must be considered when building a kit. I am NOT a fan of an artist running out and buying all the most expensive product in an attempt to impress a client. Even if you can afford it, a lot of that stuff does not even work in a pro kit. That said, you absolutely cannot open your kit and have a bunch of cheap brands (BH Cosmetics, Coastal Scents, etc.) and mass-market/drugstore stuff with a couple of popular items stuck in there and call that a working kit. Your kit should be a balance of professional product and high quality brand-name product that you know will perform when you go to use it. Oh and forego the temptation to buy these super-premium makeup brushes that are all the rage as well. Some of them are amazing, some of them are all hype, none of them will turn you into Troy Suratt overnight. Artistry is in your hands and your skill-set which is developed with time, not product.

3 ) Not Everyone Is Your Color
Even if you get a good brand-name product, it does not mean it will work on everyone. Below is a picture of my hand. On top is a “black” eyeshadow color from a popular consumer brand, middle the Black eyeshadow color from the LORAC Pro 1 eyeshadow palette, and the bottom is the BLACK eyeshadow color from the Viseart #1 neutral palette. See the difference? When you are purchasing for your kit, remember that people of color not only need a different color range, but we also need a lot more pigmentation. I’ll tell you right now those cheap-o 1-zillion color eyeshadow palettes do not even register on my skin. It will look like you did not even put anything on me. It is vital to bear this in mind when you are selecting your color cosmetics.

makeup to go blog taking your makeup kit from student to pro

black-ish, blacker, blackest… not all color cosmetics are created equal


4 ) Get Organized
The way I see a lot of students carry their products is – and I mean this in the most loving way possible – laughable. You will never be able to work with these setups. The most common mistake I see is people trying to carry EVERYTHING with them all the time because they’re “afraid” of not having something. A ) That’s highly inefficient and will make you work more slowly. B ) It’s unrealistic almost anywhere other than LA where we drive everywhere. In NYC and SF – for example – you will likely be on public transportation to the job and then you may have to carry that kit up multiple flights of stairs. How’s that train case looking now? C ) That’s a good way to have your entire inventory of product damaged, lost or stolen. D ) If you are working on a private client in their home or hotel room, they are not checking for you dragging some big a** setup into their space. Ain’t nobody got time for all that!

On the flip-side, those little boxes that open up with the drawers are really only good for smaller jobs/private clients where you can take a more edited kit. Otherwise you’re trying to cram too many things in too small of a space and it gets messy and cluttered, which slows you down and also does not make a good first impression. And your product can become easily damaged that way.

I have posted articles on my kit setup before (click to read), and I am about to do a new updated post because things have changed again. But if you do some research online it is easy to find information on how working artists organize their kits and even though every single artist on the planet has their own method, you will see certain commonalities repeated and you can start to emulate those practices.

5 ) Think Long-Term and Cross Platform
I think the reason a lot of artists become fixated on the latest greatest new palette or whatever is because they are trapped in their current circumstance, and not thinking about further down the line. Let’s say you are currently primarily doing Bridal. On a Bride you may very well use a lot of the popular consumer products, because there is a lot of psychology involved with doing “real people” clients and part of that is making them comfortable with product with which they are familiar. What many consumers think of as “high end” and “professional”, however, most artists would not. If you only build a kit with bridal/consumer clients in mind, what happens when you go to move beyond Bridal? If you have ambitions to move into media makeup, for example, you need to build a kit with that in mind, starting now. First of all, quite frankly, your bridal will come out better. If you think of Bridal as a photographic event – because once you do the bride’s makeup she will be photographed all day and night – you and your bride will be much happier with the final makeup outcome. Secondly, there is no more sign of being an amateur than having to do the mad dash shopping trip before a job. That’s just lack of preparedness. Buy products that can work in multiple venues. I already showed the difference – for example – between the Viseart and LORAC Pro palettes, and the run-of-the-mill consumer brand palette. If you select professional foundation/skin products and then stick to color products that can work in multiple mediums, you have just saved yourself a lot of time and money AND you’ll be ready to work when the opportunity presents itself.

6 ) What Else Are You Doing?
Thus far we have talked about the Beauty makeup kit. This blog is run by a beauty makeup artist and hence, most of my discussion is from that point of view. Also on the practical level, it is where a lot of artists start since a lot of artists nowadays start out with bridal or working for a cosmetics line, etc. However, for most of us the Beauty Kit will not be the only game in town. For example, a goodly percentage of my jobs – over half, I would say – also necessitate that I do hair. This means I had to invest in and now have to maintain a hair kit. Hair product is expensive. Tools are expensive. One of my best clients also required that I carry extensions. Extensions are expensive. Therefore, you will need to plan for that as well. I also do a lot of men’s grooming so I had to invest in a good clipper/trimmer, a nose/ear hair trimmmer (which thankfully I rarely ever have to use, but I do have it), and with the whole “Lumbersexual” trend, beard grooming/styling product, etc.

And we have not even touched upon maintaining an FX kit, which you will obviously need to do if you plan to work in FX. I do NOT work in FX at all, HOWEVER I’ve worked on projects where I had to bald cap or do some facial hair work. Or create a bruise or bloodshot eyes. So while I do not often carry it with me, even I have to own some theatrical/character makeup (I refuse to keep any blood of any kind whatsoever. Refuse!!! LOL)

7 ) How Do You Get There?
If this post seems like more questions than answers, my apologies but it kind of is. I am throwing out guidelines for you to think about as you grow your kit and your business. Here at Makeup to Go, I focus a lot on thinking, which is exactly what a lot of these trend brands and trend items do not want you to do. They want you to blindly purchase whatever it is they are selling so they can keep making money. I want you to not be a sheep and to build a successful makeup business. if you want a particular popular item because you have thought about it and decided that it is going to add value to your kit/business, go for it. The name of the game, however, is making informed choices based on your priorities of what you are trying to do and where you are trying to go. If it is not adding anything to the party, skip it. Once you have what you feel is a fully materialized kit where you can walk out the door to any job feeling prepared, then you can start adding in doodads, trinkets, and the latest palette du jour if you so choose. 🙂

8 ) Give Me Some Specific Recommendations, Dammit!
As you know, I talk a lot about products I am actually using here on the blog, so that is a good place to start. I am reticent to “prescribe” specific products because the journey of developing a kit is quite personal. What one artists loves another may disdain, hence I am a huge advocate of getting a lot of samples and trying a lot of product before you settle down and start committing.

THAT SAID: If you just want to know what products I use and recommend, there is always my Makeup to Go Preferred Products List. You can buy the List for $10, or you can by a Subscription (updated quarterly or so, and actually a new update is coming soon) for $25/year. The links to purchase are below.

MTG Preferred Products List –






MTG Preferred Products List SUBSCRIPTION –





As you can see, there is a lot to think about, purchase, maintain and upkeep in the professional working kit. Do you really have time for another contour kit? Nah…and not only that, if you have a functional pro kit, you do not need a contour kit at all. You’ll already have about 10000 different products you can contour/highlight with.

#MakeupMonday – Kit Sanitation

Makeup to go makeup to go blog kit sanitation

The Clean Team


A couple of weeks ago here on Makeup to Go Blog, I posted an article regarding knowing when it was time to say “Goodbye” to your old makeup (click to read “Breaking Up Is Hard to Do: When to Toss Makeup). In that article I made mention of the fact that some rules can be bent or even broken. The trick? Kit Sanitation.

Makeup artists refer to their makeup product & tools as their “Kit”. If you have a lipstick, an eyeliner, a mascara and a few brushes, that is your Kit. Makeup artists obviously have a lot more in their Kits (not to mention an artist that does Airbrush or an artist that does FX), but the point of the story is whether your Kit contains 5 items or 500, proper care, maintenance and storage will enable you to keep and use your products longer. I debated doing this post as a “Makeup Monday” or as a “Biz Talk” post but as I was writing the makeup purge post I realized this is relevant info for pros and non-pro makeup lovers alike 🙂

THE HARD TRUTH
Humans are bundles of bacteria, as are most things in the world. It is this constant contact with a barrage of bacteria why we cannot just keep makeup indefinitely. Think I’m exaggerating? Check out this LiveStrong article on the different types of bacteria found on cosmetics, transmitted through human contact.

– Staphylococcus epidermidis
– Staphylococcus warneri
– Pseudomonas aeruginosa
– Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus

So we’re talking 3 different forms of Staph infection, and one other infectious bacteria that is even worse. No bueno.

WHAT TO DO
Short version: Keep your stuff clean!!!!!

As a semi-germaphobe I just cannot believe the condition in which I’ve see some people’s makeup and tools. Sad to say, I include non-pros AND pros in this statement 😐 Keeping your products and tools clean will not only lessen (not eliminate, lessen) the risk of catching some of the afore mentioned nasties BUT it will enable you to keep makeup longer. No makeup artist is buying a limited edition NARS palette and then tossing it after a year, that’s laughable. I owned my beloved “Skin Deep”, “Emotional Rescue”, and “Rapture” palettes for about 6 years or so (from when they came out until this past Labour Day weekend when I did my purge) and they were in steady rotation in good working use for about 5 of those 6 years. That final year was me being in denial and not ready to let go, even though the lipsticks were giving me that telltale smell 🙁

HOW TO CLEAN

Ask a number of makeup artists and you’ll likely get a number of different answers, but in 15+ years I’ve never had a sanitation complaint or had talent have a negative reaction (that I am aware of) from my Kit. Here’s how I keep it clean;

Cream Products
(Foundations, Blushes, Eyeshadows, Lipsticks, etc):
SPRAY WITH ALCOHOL AFTER USING.

In my professional life I use a (preferably metal) spatula to take product out of its container so I can use it on my talent/client. On myself, of course, I just use the product directly on my face. In either case, I give a quick spray with alcohol after use (yes, even when using a spatula because the product has been open and hence exposed to air). Let the alcohol sit on the product for at least 30 seconds. I just give my product a good spray down and let it air-dry and by the time its fully dry it is good to go.

Powder Products
(Eyeshadows, Blushes, Bronzers, Pressed Powder, Powder Foundations, etc.)
SPRAY WITH ALCOHOL AFTER USING. Wipe top layer periodically.

Powders should last you a while because they do not carry bacteria the way creams and liquids do. That said, unlike creams and liquids you have to use them right out of the pan. With creams and liquids you can decant as needed and not have to “double dip” into your product. Since using powder products is a constant “double dip” you’ll want to keep that top surface clean. Spraying with alcohol will NOT compromise your product, just be sure not to over saturate your product, and let the alcohol evaporate completely. You can – and should periodically – use alcohol wipes on your powder product so that you are actually removing the top layer of product revealing a fresh, new layer underneath. Some people recommend scraping the top layer of powder products, but one time of accidentally crushing your favorite eyeshadow, blush, or bronzer and you’ll see why I’m not a fan of that method.

Liquid Products
(Foundations, Liquid Highlighters, Illuminators, Lotions, etc.)
USE PUMP and/or TUBE DISPENSERS

These are tricky because they generally need to be shaken and then most people pour the product out into their hand, often touching their hand. Once bacteria is in there, there is no way to get it out. My solution: Use liquids that come in a pump bottle. That way you only dispense what you need and the rest stays safe and isn’t exposed to air, your hand, etc. If your favorite product doesn’t come in a pump bottle or a tube, move it to one. Places like The Container Store or my beloved MUJI that I wrote about have empty pumps and tubes available. NOTE: Glass is better than plastic in terms of longer term storage. If you get a plastic container, don’t try to reuse as plastic is porous. Just toss it when the product is empty and get a new one. Extra Germaphobe Points: Wipe the opening of your pump bottle/tube with alcohol periodically 🙂

Makeup to go makeup to go blog kit sanitation

Cut the wand OFF. Maybelline Great Lash comes like this now (click to see larger)



Mascara
CUT THAT WAND OFF!!! Use Disposable Wands Instead

Mascara just does not live long so your first order of sanitation business is just to accept the reality of that reality. However, you can make your mascara last longer by ditching the wand that comes with it and using disposable wands the way professionals do. And by ditching the wand I do not just mean not using it, I mean cutting it off. Why? Because every time you take the wand in and out of the tube, you are pumping air into the product. This not only increases the likelihood of introducing bacteria, it also dries the mascara out faster so you have to replace it sooner. By cutting the wand off you can stretch your mascara’s life from 3 months to as many as 6 or maybe more*. NOW – a lot of the hype with many mascaras on the market IS the brush itself and how it applies product or separates lashes or what have you. IF you want to use the wand that comes with the mascara you certainly can (on YOURSELF, not using it on multiple people), just know that you’ll have to replace your mascara more frequently.

Pencils
KEEP SHARPENED. SPRAY WITH ALCOHOL.

Pencils can actually last a while if well cared for. I do an alcohol > sharpen > alcohol routine for all of my pencils in my kit. For yourself, if you just sharpen your pencils** right after using it and keep your pencils covered (don’t lose those lids!) you’ll be removing that outer layer where the bacteria lives and your pencils will stay happy longer. Extra Germaphobe points if you sharpen your pencil AND spray with alcohol after each use.

Gel / Liquid Liners
NOT A WHOLE LOT YOU CAN DO

With Gel liners, which is what I primarily use, I scrape a small amount of product out with a spatula and I spray the gel liner with alcohol after each use. As we all know, gel liners tend to dry out quickly anyway, and alcohol hastens the process. Therefore like mascara, this is just a category of product that does not last very long.

Liquid liner is great for personal use but tricky for pro use because the brush/applicator sits in the product in the tube. Therefore to use the product you are constantly double dipping. For professional use if I decide I’m going to use a liquid liner for whatever reason it’s a case of one and done for me. I use it and I give it to the person I used it on and just keep it moving. For personal use, you can wipe off the brush/applicator tip with alcohol before re-inserting it into the tube. This may help a bit but again, this type of product by its nature just doesn’t last long.

Tools
(Brushes, eyelash curlers, pencil sharpeners, etc.)
CLEAN, BABY, CLEAN

I said this in a previous Makeup to Go post and I’ll say it again: Everything I just wrote is completely moot if you do not keep your TOOLS clean. Your TOOLS are the items making direct contact to the skin and hence they are the carriers of the bacteria.

– WIPE BRUSHES AFTER EVERY USE. Its not hard, in fact it only takes a few minutes. Wiping your brushes with a specifically designed quick brush cleaner will remove surface oils, skin cells, etc. that get on your brushes. Hence you won’t transfer that back to your product, hence your product will live longer. There are many brands, just make sure they disinfect as well as clean pigment. And always let the brush dry completely before using again, you do not want brush cleaner on your product or on your face! In a pinch you can always use good ole alcohol (just be forewarned, over use of alcohol will dry your bristles and cause your brushes to age prematurely). My brush cleaner of choice: Parian Spirit

– DEEP SHAMPOO your brushes at least once a week. If you’re doing makeup on other people, please do this as close to daily as possible. Again, there are a number of good brands, and in a pinch you can use either a shampoo/conditioner all-in-one like Pert, or any baby shampoo. My brush shampoo of choice: Clean Brush

– WIPE METAL TOOLS such as tweezers, eyelash curlers, pencil sharpeners and spatulas with alcohol after every use. And when they start looking raggedy, just replace them.

– WASH YOUR HANDS before doing anything. Our hands are our most important “tool” in our “kits”. Before handling anything and certainly before touching your face, wash your hands with soap and hot water. At very least wipe with a sanitizing cloth and use hand sanitizer. It makes a huge difference.

PRODUCTS TO HELP YOU STAY CLEAN

Alcohol
Preferably NOT 99% alcohol, it evaporates too quickly. I use either 70% or 91% alcohol, both of which are readily available at any drugstore. 70% is my favorite. The water content helps the alcohol evaporate more slowly so it disinfects more thoroughly but it is not so much water that it will ruin your product (I wouldn’t recommend a 50% alcohol, too much water).

Beauty So Clean
I’ve not personally tried it but I know many pros who swear by it. The main active ingredient in BSC is alcohol. The difference with BSC is the addition of emollient agents. They claim that straight alcohol can dry out and alter your cosmetics (not in my experience) and that BSC is formulated with a balance of disinfectants and emollients to prevent that from happening. Again, I’ve never had a problem with straight alcohol, but Beauty So Clean works and it smells good. If you’d prefer to use something other than straight alcohol, Beauty So Clean is there for you.

– Parian Spirit Brush Cleaner
(NOTE: Parian Spirit has lower alcohol content than most pro brush cleaners and uses citrus spirit as its main cleaning/disinfectant agent. Therefore it does not dry as quickly as other “quick clean” brush cleaners and the smell is very citrus-y. I love it, some folks hate it lol)

Clean Brush Shampoo
Solid brush shampoo to deep clean your brushes.

Bleach
This shouldn’t need to be said but I’ll say it just in case: DO NOT USE BLEACH ON YOUR COSMETICS PRODUCTS. It’ll ruin them. However I do use a small amount of bleach on a q-tip to clean my pencil sharpeners periodically. Wipe, let sit for a bit, then RINSE with water and dry thoroughly. Do not try to soak your sharpener in bleach, it will rust all the metal bits (ask me how I know that 😐 ).

STORAGE makes a big difference as well in the longevity of your products but speaking of long, this post already is. Look for a post on storing your cosmetics in an upcoming Makeup Monday.