#BizTalk – Late Pass – IMATS LA 2017

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makeup to go blog makeup artist los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup educator imats la 2017

line around the building for opening day of IMATS LA 2017…


I’m late…

This was originally going to be a #MakeupMonday – Makeup Short Notes post, but as I was writing it became clear that my notes were no longer short. So IMATS LA 2017 will be its own post, and we’ll hit the Makeup Short Notes on Monday.

IMATS LA 2017 took place this past January, and while it was not as amazing for me as last year was, it was a highly enjoyable, well produced show. The caliber of the vendors was overall very good, and the caliber of the education was excellent. Even in the “Influencers” hall – which I found quite spookadelic last year – there was education that was accessible to the consumer audience, but still relevant to the pros.

makeup to go blog makeup artist los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup educator imats la 2017 sir john

Sir John Keynote and demo

makeup to go blog makeup artist los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup educator imats la 2017 sir john

Sir John’s second model


Sir John – of Beyonce’s Makeup Artist fame – was more awesome than I even hoped he would be. I’ve been a fan of his makeup for a while as his aesthetic is similar to mine – he even said a lot of things I’ve heard myself say in my classes – and I was pleased to see that he has a wonderful personality to match. No matter how simple the question, Sir John was energetic, engaging, encouraging and NEVER condescending. He truly wanted to teach and share information. All while doing not one, but TWO great makeup demos. Impressive! (follow him on Instagram @sirjohnofficial)

makeup to go blog makeup artist los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup educator imats la 2017 fatima thomas mac cosmetics

Senior MAC artist Fatima Thomas “Contemporary Beauty for Women of Color”


On the flipside, I was completely UNfamiliar with MAC Senior Artist Fatima Thomas before her demo, and I walked away a fan. In addition to being an excellent artist and doing a beautiful demo, she gave a lot of technical knowledge in her talk. She is an EXCELLENT teacher. Lighting, temperature, hues, tone, color theory all played heavily in her demo. Those who kept their ears open walked away from the demo enlightened.

makeup to go blog makeup artist los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup educator imats la 2017 mac cosmetics ashley rudder

Ashley Rudder of MAC Cosmetics “Eras Reinterpreted” demo

makeup to go blog makeup artist los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup educator imats la 2017 mac cosmetics ashley rudder

finishing touches on Eras Reinterpreted demo


MAC Senior Artist Ashley Rudder’s demo met at the cross section of art and fashion as she worked through a highly modernized Elizabethan makeup design. I’d forgotten that MAC has some interesting, non-traditional products available in the MAC PRO line. I walked away with some new thoughts on product usage.

makeup to go blog makeup artist los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup educator imats la 2017 jordan liberty

Jordan Liberty “Beauty of Restraint” demo

makeup to go blog makeup artist los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup educator imats la 2017 jordan liberty

Artist Jordan Liberty is known for his modern “Glam” style and in his demo he walked through achieving a Glam look without going overboard. The end result was definitely still Glam complete with his signature glossy eyelids, but still fresh and pretty.

makeup to go blog makeup artist los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup educator imats la 2017 sam fine

Sam Fine Keynote and demo

makeup to go blog makeup artist los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup educator imats la 2017 sam fine

I’ve seen Sam Fine in demo about 12-trillion times and this last time it really dawned on me how unique and “his own” his style is. Everything from the way he uses product to the tools he uses (including an all-important Tupperware™ lid) is just nothing like what I’ve ever seen any other artist do. Maybe that’s why I keep sitting in on his demos whenever I have the opportunity. In an industry where folks are described as one of a kind pretty regularly, Sam Fine is truly One Of A Kind. And his work and career speak for themselves.

makeup to go blog makeup artist los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup educator imats la 2017 lost boys panel

a whole lotta film makeup fire power on one stage – Lost Boys 30 year reunion


On a very different note from what I’m usually into and what I usually discuss here on el blog, IMATS celebrated the 30-year reunion of the film “The Lost Boys” by having a Keynote panel featuring some of the actors from the film and the makeup artists who created the looks for the film. For those of us “of a certain age” The Lost Boys was That Movie; everyone saw it, everyone talked about it… even scare-dee-cat me who NEVER watches any kind of even slightly scary movie went and saw it in the theatre (eyes covered a lot of the time but still, I was there!). What I didn’t think about until this panel was how that movie completely changed the aesthetic of the Vampire genre, period. With one movie it went from the old Nosferatu “I vant to drink your blood”, Transylvania scary guy Vampire, to the young, sexy Vampire aesthetic we have now (if you’re wondering, yes, Lost Boys pre-dates the film adaptation of Interview with a Vampire by 11 years). So if you’re a fan of True Bood, Twilight, etc. you owe a lot of that to Lost Boys. Thank you to make-up artists Ve Neill, Greg Cannom (who was my Spirit Brother on the panel), and Steve LaPorte for sharing stories and insights.

Other Sights and Sounds

Aside from the education, the other (probably main for most folks) draw at IMATS is of course the shopping. I didn’t do too much damage this year, but for me as a Pro it is important for me to visit my vendors and peers, and as a FAN of makeup I always like to see what fun stuff is being created. Also, hanging out with my makeup homies is always the best part of any trade show. Shout Out to Eizabeth Fox (Instagram @lizzyfoxmakeup) for hanging with me. It was fab! 😀

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The actor underneath this makeup is in his mid-30s

makeup to go blog makeup artist los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup educator imats la 2017

someone forgot to put their face on before the show!

makeup to go blog makeup artist los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup educator imats la 2017 eve pearl

my former student Priscilla (@prisgutierrez) now works with the Eve Pearl line…

makeup to go blog makeup artist los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup educator imats la 2017 frends beauty

my former student Mindy werkin’ it out for Frends Beauty

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the pro-sumer brands were doing swift business…

makeup to go blog makeup artist los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup educator imats la 2017 senna cosmetics

makeup to go blog makeup artist los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup educator imats la 2017 senna cosmetics

new Senna Cosmetics brow powder pencils. Senna’s Taupe and Blonde pencils are some of the most truthiest #Truth products in all of makeup


makeup to go blog makeup artist los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup educator imats la 2017 cozzette cosmetics

Cozzette powder palettes


My “Haul”

makeup to go blog makeup artist los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup educator imats la 2017 gratis haul thank you

Thank you to Make Up For Ever, Lemonhead LA, Embryolisse, Royal Langenickel and Poise Professional for your generosity! Be sure to follow these brands on social media, and buy and #supportthebrandsthatsupportproartists

makeup to go blog makeup artist los angeles makeup artist san francisco makeup educator imats la 2017 purchase haul

Mehron Mixing Medium, Parian Spirit brush cleaner, and a few brushes from Crown Brush


The 2nd to last photo are items I was gifted, the last photo is of the items I purchased. As always, I don’t do “first impression” reviews so keep your eyes out on full product reviews as I’ve had the chance to actually use things (except for Parian Spirit which we all already know I consider to be #TheTruth).

Thanks much to Michael Key and the IMATS staff for always listing to the community and putting on a high quality event! 😀
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#MaquillajeParaGo – 2014 PHAMExpo Delia’s Take


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco maquillaje 2014 PHAMExpo Delia's Take Embryolisse Artists Secret Radiant Eye balm

Embryolisse Artists Secret Radiant Eye balm.


Makeup to Go’s Blogstress in Espanol – Delia – is back!

Del was able to join me at the 2014 PHAMExpo and here are her impressions of the show… (as per usual, English to follow…)

Había muchas cosas interesantes en PHAMExpo este año. El PHAMExpo no es sólo para los profesionales de maquillaje y cabello, pero es uno de los pocos shows que están abiertos al público en general. Algunos de los más grandes artistas de la industria estaban allí para educar y algunos de nuestros vendedores preferidos regresaron con nuevos productos.

Algunos de los aspectos más destacados del show eran demostraciones educativas de Scott Barnes, Sam Fine y Sam y Nic Chapman (Pixiwoos). Había muchos otros talentosos artistas que compartieron su vasto conocimiento, pero estas fueron las tres demos que pude asistir. Además de demostraciones en el escenario principal, había muchas otras clases en otras partes del edificio. La clase de los medios sociales tuvo un gran grupo de personas que comparten su experiencia sobre el uso de las distintas plataformas de medios sociales para ampliar su marca. Dieron consejos y trucos sobre cómo hacer dinero con los medios sociales y cómo trabajar con las marcas de maquillaje.

Aunque pensé que había menos vendedores este año, hemos visto el regreso de muchas de nuestras marcas favoritas, como cosméticos Inglot y Lime Crime. Embryolisse estaba allí con toda su línea Secreto del Artista (Artist Secret) y el tratamiento radiante de ojos fue de mi producto favorito. El tratamiento radiante de ojos se utiliza para iluminar rápidamente el área de los ojos bajo. Aparte de Embryolisse, Vueset estaba allí con unos pocos casos nuevos. Si no está ya, usted debe familiarizarse con Vueset, tienen las mejores paletas y lcasos para el maquillaje y el cabello.

Si usted tiene la oportunidad de asistir el próximo año, lo recomiendo. En general, el show ofrece muchos puntos de venta y productos educativos a precios asequibles. Espero ver a la sala de exposiciones llena de muchos más vendedores del año próximo.

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco maquillaje 2014 PHAMExpo Delia's Take Embryolisse Lait Creme Concentrate 24 hour miracle cream

aka “The 24-Hour Miracle Cream”


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco maquillaje 2014 PHAMExpo Delia's Take Gleam By Melanie Mills body shimmer powder

Gleam By Melanie Mills body shimmer powder


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco maquillaje 2014 PHAMExpo Delia's Take Gleam By Melanie Mills body shimmer cream

Gleam By Melanie Mills body shimmer cream (I have these – they are FAB!)


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco maquillaje 2014 PHAMExpo Delia's Take freeway vueset palette

soon to be released “Freeway” VueSet palette


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

~~~~~~

There were many exciting things happening at this year’s PHAMExpo. The PHAMExpo is not only for industry professionals, but it is one of the few shows that are open to the general public. Some of the biggest artists in the industry were there to educate and some of our favorite vendors returned introducing new products.

Some of the highlights of the show were educational demos on the main stage by Scott Barnes, Sam Fine and Sam and Nic Chapman (The Pixiwoos). There were many other talented artists that shared their vast knowledge, but these were the three demos I was able to attend. Aside from demos on the main stage, there were many other classes being held elsewhere in the building. The Social Media class had a great panel of people who shared their expertise on how to use the various platforms of social media to expand your brand. They gave tips and tricks on how to make money with social media and how to network with make-up brands.

Although I thought there were less vendors on the floor this year, we saw the return of many of our favorite cosmetic brands such as Inglot and Lime Crime. Embryolisse was there with their entire Artist Secret line and the Radiant Eye treatment stick was by far my favorite product. The Radiant Eye treatment stick is used to quickly brighten the under eye area. Aside from Embryolisse, Vueset was there with a few new cases. If you’re not already, you should become familiar with Vueset, they have the best palettes and cases for make-up and hair.

If you have chance to attend next year, I highly recommend it. Overall the show provided many educational outlets and products at affordable prices. I hope to see the exhibit room filled with many more vendors next year.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco maquillaje 2014 PHAMExpo Delia's Take Embryolisse Artists Secret Radiant Eye balm

Embryolisse Artists Secret Radiant Eye balm.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco maquillaje 2014 PHAMExpo Delia's Take Embryolisse Lait Creme Concentrate 24 hour miracle cream

aka “The 24-Hour Miracle Cream”


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco maquillaje 2014 PHAMExpo Delia's Take Gleam By Melanie Mills body shimmer powder

Gleam By Melanie Mills body shimmer powder


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco maquillaje 2014 PHAMExpo Delia's Take Gleam By Melanie Mills body shimmer cream

Gleam By Melanie Mills body shimmer cream (I have these – they are FAB!)


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco maquillaje 2014 PHAMExpo Delia's Take freeway vueset palette

soon to be released “Freeway” VueSet palette


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

CORRECTION: I (Tania) KEEP calling makeup artist Melanie Mills line “Gleam by Stephanie Mills” which is incorrect. Stephanie Mills is an R&B/pop singer from the 80s/90s who I grew up listening to so it must just be subliminal on my part.

The correct name of the fab cosmetics line is Gleam by MELANIE Mills

My apologies for the error.

#MakeupMonday – 2014 PHAMExpo Wrap Up

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco tania d russell 2014 phame expo wrap up

I didn’t realize when I took this photo; those fab ladies are my students Amanda and Annette checking into the show…


Once again I enjoyed the PHAMExpo…

I had the pleasure of spending time with two of my main makeup home-girls and observing some of the sights and sounds of what’s currently happening in the beauty biz. The show is now over and so it is time for the 2014 PHAMExpo Wrap Up.

Saturday I unfortunately was not able to hear any speakers, including missing Marietta Carter-Narcisse speak *sobs*. I had a job in the morning, and so I did not arrive at the expo until later that afternoon. Such is the makeup artists life! Therefore me and my main blog contributor, Delia Jimenez Owens (@deliajowens), just walked the floor to see what vendors had to offer and to plan our shopping escapades for the next day. Sunday, however, we arrived earlier with a mission and a purpose. AND I was able to attend one of the workshops I wanted to see plus catch a few minutes of a couple of the Keynote Speakers.

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco tania d russell 2014 phamexpo wrap up parian spirit

Parian Spirit Brush Cleaner – Priority #1


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco tania d russell 2014 phamexpo wrap up EI and ardell lashes

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Good sized crowds in attendance this year…



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new product from Embryolisse


I didn’t end up picking it up just yet, but one of the intriguing new product discoveries was this Embryolisse Artists Secret Radiant Eye balm. It is a cooling under eye balm that immediately hydrates, brightens and tightens. When I first tried it, they did it on my arm but then my girl Robyn of Purely Cosmetics who also works with Embryoliise USA put some underneath my eye. Expect a review soon because that little sampling was highly impressive, I want one for myself and my kit!

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco tania d russell 2014 phamexpo wrap up michael o rourke

legendary hair stylist Michael O’ Rourke in action


This guy was a beast! When I arrived on Saturday, he was doing his Keynote speak/demo on the main stage but then for the entire rest of the show he demo’d almost continuously at his booth, Rock Your Hair. Apparently Mr. O’Rourke been in the business for over 50 years (??? – I still say he was a 1-year old when he started), so to see him still operating with that much energy, enthusiasm, and passion was inspiring to say the least!

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makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco tania d russell 2014 phamexpo wrap up making you cosmetics DIY kit

Making You Cosmetics


I’d not heard of this line before, so it is always exciting to discover a new, independent brand. The line has a number of offerings (I would say the line is mostly geared towards consumers), most impressive to me were the lip glosses. The lip glosses have nice depth of color, nice coverage, lay down smooth and aren’t too thick and gloopy (or thin and watery). And while this is a full spectrum line for all skin tones, there are a number of lovely shades for deeper skin tones. I purchased the 5 pack of full-sized glosses for my kit, although one shade might not make it there 😉 Also, super fun for consumers or burgeoning makeup creators is the “DIY Lipgloss Kit” which contains all the bases and a selection of pigments necessary to create your own lipgloss colors. You can visit them on their website: Making You Cosmetics.


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Clean Brush cleaner was present at the Frends Beauty Supply booth


There was another trade show happening this same weekend “across the Pond”, but that did not stop Frends Beauty Supply from being in two places at once. As always, the Frends booth was well stocked with all the necessary basics, including Clean Brush Shampoo. I didn’t get any since I just restocked, but my makeup homie Renee took 2 home.


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco tania d russell 2014 phamexpo wrap up new vueset palettes

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco tania d russell 2014 phamexpo wrap up brenda green vueset

the lovely Brenda Green, founder of the Vueset palettes holding the soon-to-be-released “Freeway” palette


It was SO FABULOUS to see Brenda Green this year! I missed her last year when she debuted the Vueset palettes, so I did not want to miss her this year when she introduced 5 new Vuesets. Look for a review of the new Vuesets coming very soon!


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco tania d russell 2014 phamexpo wrap up starbucks fail

Starbucks FAIL – Who closes early on a Saturday afternoon when there’s a TRADESHOW happening in the building?!?!?!


I was dying for an iced chai latte both when I arrived Saturday afternoon and after walking the floor on Sunday afternoon. Both days I was denied because the Starbucks that is IN the Pasadena Convention Center building – the building where the trade show was taking place – CLOSED in the early afternoon both days. On a WEEKEND. Who does that?!?!


makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco tania d russell 2014 phamexpo wrap up social media panel

Social Media Forum (L to R); @iamstarwalker, @makeupgeek, @xoxolizz, @desimakeup, @chrisspy, Danny Rodriguez of @beautyblender


This was the ONE workshop I absolutely did NOT want to miss. I know a lot about being a media makeup artist, I have been at it for a while now. However, as I continue to build the Makeup to Go! empire, I realize there is a lot a lot I do not know about the world of Social Media. Learning WordPress was hard enough, but things change in the Social Media landscape everyday. From the casual user to the paid Social Media professional, there is a lot to keep up with. All of the panelists (with the exception of Star Walker who was the moderator and Danny Rodriguez representing Beauty Blender who was on the panel to discuss Social Media from the Brand side) have been successful in turning their Social Media presence into legit cottage industries. Marlena of MakeupGeek has turned her passion into a full on business and in addition to having a successful makeup line, she will be opening physical stores soon. Wow! That is not my ambition with Makeup to Go!, but I do have goals so it is inspiring to hear where people have been able to go using Social Media. I really appreciated the willingness of the panel to share real knowledge. I learned a lot!

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco tania d russell 2014 phamexpo wrap up pixiwoo2

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco tania d russell 2014 phamexpo wrap up pixiwoo1

Sam and Nic Chapman of Pixiwoo


Speaking of turning an online presence into an entire enterprise, the ladies of Pixiwoo have to be one of the premiere examples. They got their start as makeup artists FIRST, working at cosmetics counters and also under their aunt was was a prominent UK Makeup Artist. Before Social Media and YouTube was even a thing, Sam – after having her first child – started making video tutorials of makeup demonstrations on herself and the rest as they say… After a brief speech about their history and start in the social media world, the sisters did a demonstration of a “London” makeup style (which is – by their description – a little bit funkier and quirkier than the clean sophistication of a “New York” style).

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco tania d russell 2014 phamexpo wrap up amanda and annette

my fab makeup students Amanda and Annette


Towards the end of the day I finally ran into some of my students who attended their first trade show as professional makeup artists. 🙂 Regretfully, I did not take a photo of Sabrina and Veronica who were also in attendance (It initially slipped my mind to take a photo altogether, I just fortunately happened to run into Amanda and Annette again), and I missed my girl Wendy entirely. 🙁 But I’m super proud of my students for making it to the show! 🙂


makeup to go 2014 phamexpo wrap up sam fine demo

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco tania d russell 2014 phamexpo wrap up sam fine crowd

Sam Fine demo, standing room only…


I really had not planned on seeing Sam Fine’s demo just because I have seen him in demonstration so many times, yet I found myself standing and watching yet another Sam Fine demo. For me, that is the power of a great artist – I just cannot help but be drawn in by their awesome powers. In addition to being a great artist in terms of the caliber of his work, Mr. Fine is also a great demonstrator in terms of how he works with the crowd. Some of the questions asked were quite basic from young artists who have not yet gone pro (how to match foundation, etc.) and he neither hemmed and hawed NOR just gave the audience easy answers. He challenged question seekers to THINK about what they were asking, how there probably was not one answer that fit all situations, and how they can find solutions to their own makeup issues. To me that marks a Master Teacher as well as a master artist.

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco tania d russell 2014 phamexpo wrap up tania d russell haul

the Haul…(and to think this does NOT include the 20 pairs of lashes I’d purchased in DTLA the day before the show…)


and my 2014 haul which includes MakeupGeek, Making You Cosmetics, VueSet (thanks Brenda!), Parian Spirit (I was reaching Kenny Loggins “Danger Zone” levels in my supply!), and lots o’ lashes (Ardell and Red Cherry).

LAST SHOW NOTES
– I was super happy to see increased attendance this year, and I hope it grows more next year. Remember, this event is open to the Public. It is not a professionals only show so tell your friends and relatives to come SHOP! 🙂
– Check-In was easy-peasy and the show staff were friendly and helpful.
– It was nice to see the nail vendors getting some love. I discovered a great new product I plan to try and talk about soon (perfect for us non-manicurists!)
– Anastasia and LimeCrime were busy the ENTIRE time I was at the show, I couldn’t even pretend to get to either booth until it was almost show closing time.
– This show is all beauty all the time (no FX!) so I hope more of the BEAUTY brands come to exhibit next year. Smashbox, Stila, Muse Beauty Pro, Bdellium Tools, Becca, etc. etc. I am looking at YOU! 🙂
– ONE CRITIQUE: There is a bit too much noise around the main stage. It was often hard to hear presenters (visit my Instagram feed – @makeuptogoblog – to see and hear a video portion of Sam Fine’s demo).

If PHAME comes back for a third year, I will do my best to be there. So here’s to a third year!

Many thanks to the PHAMExpo for giving myself and my Blogstress in Español, Delia, passes to attend the show!

How was your PHAME experience? Let me know in Comments below 🙂

#MakeupMonday – The Makeup Show LA 2013 Postscript

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco the makeup show la 2013 postscript

The Makeup Show LA 2013 is a wrap…

and I’d have to say it was a rousing success. This year’s show featured some of the best in the biz and had something for all artists working in all mediums at all levels. Here’s a photo essay of the Makeup to Go experience of the show…

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco the makeup show la 2013 postscript

my show started at the Bloggers Preview. Many thanks to Make Up For Ever, Temptu, OCC Makeup, Ellis Faas, Kevyn Aucoin, Bdellium tools, Ofra Cosmetics, Model In A Bottle, Stila, Anastasia of Beverly Hills, Crown Brush, T3, Cinema Secrets, Jouer, Monda, Embryolisse, Senna Cosmetics, Youngblood Cosmetics, and Gorgeous Cosmetics for their generosity!


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#MakeupMonday – Fashion Fair Supreme Color Collection by Sam Fine

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco tania d russell fashion fair supreme color collection eyeshadow compact

Behold! The first in Makeup to Go’s version of “swatches”…

As you can see, our idea of swatches is a bit different. As a makeup fan, I understand that seeing the actual product on an actual person is a more accurate way to see a color/texture/etc. of a product. As a professional makeup artist, I also want to know how it wears, how it looks in different lights, and how it photographs. Therefore – about every month or so – I hope to pick a product line or a theme or the like and USE them in a professional photoshoot and see how they perform. First up to bat I am featuring the Fashion Fair Supreme Color Collection by Sam Fine.

For those who are not familiar, Fashion Fair was founded in 1973 by the late John H. Johnson and his wife, the late Eunice W. Johnso. The goal was to address the lack of cosmetics available for women of color, particularly African America women. You can click here to read the full story but basically put; long before there was MAC or before it was expected for a mainstream brand to have colors for “ethnic” skintones, Fashion Fair was there to fulfill the need. Like many a brown girl of a certain age, I grew up watching my grandmother, mother and all of the women around me using Fashion Fair. The pink packaging with gold leaf writing brings back strong memories. Over time, however, Fashion Fair began to recede in popularity as the mainstream brands did start to (finally!) address the needs of women of color. That coupled with dated color palettes and formulations (and some would say the packaging was dated as well), and Fashion Fair began to slip a bit in the competitive cosmetics marketplace. Enter master makeup artist Sam Fine. In August 2011 it was announced that he would be joining Fashion Fair as the Creative Makeup Director and begin designing signature Trend lines for the brand. His first collection came out in 2012 and was an instant success, bringing a much needed breath of fresh air and vitality to the brand.

In this story, I am working with his latest collection, The Supreme Color collection. I am focusing on one eyeshadow palette in particular, the Amalfi Coast quad. I chose to work with the eyeshadows because eyeshadow is one of the areas where rank-and-file consumer cosmetics often do not work for women of color because they lack adequate pigmentation. I have even found this to be the case with some of the better brands. On the other hand, a woman wants a palette of wearable colors and not necessarily the extremes of brands such as Sugarpill or LimeCrime. Overall, I was very impressed with this palette. The shadows are wonderfully pigmented and have a creamy texture with good color payoff. Unlike a lot (most) higher pigmentation eyeshadows, they are creamy instead of powdery, which means they are easily blendable and have less fallout. All that said, let’s see the products in action.

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco tania d russell fashion fair supreme color collection amalfi coast eyeshadow quad

Fashion Fair Supreme Color Collection eyeshadow quad in “Amalfi Coast”


…and here are swatches of the colors on my model’s hands both dry and damp (most eyeshadows that can be applied dry can be applied damp to increase the pigmentation and staying power).

makeup to go blog makeup los angeles makeup san francisco tania d russell fashion fair supreme color collection amalfi eyeshadow swatches

left – dry, right – damp


As you can see, the Amalfi Coast quad is a more “neutral” palette, although Mr. Fine modernized by Quad by adding a pop of color in the form of this year’s trend color of Emerald Green. It is smart touches like that which make this Collection on trend without being overboard trendy. (The other quad in the collection, Tunisian Nights, is a jewel-tone blue & purple palette).I also used some of the lip colors from the collection in my shoots. Here is a swatch of all of the lip colors in the collection. As you can see, the color palette is fresh and contemporary with a few classics mixed in. The lip colors are also nicely pigmented while still creamy and blendable, and the pigment lays very evenly. Also used throughout the shoot, although not pictured, is the Canary Diamond gloss which is a nude-y/gold shimmer. I liked it, but I wouldn’t say it was remarkable.

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Swatches shown on my own hand. Yes, some pre-photo lotion would have been nice…


OK so for look #1 I of course started out with a clean beauty/daytime look using only the burgundy/bronze shimmer (lower left corner) and the light gold shimmer (upper left corner). I used the shadows dry. (all makeup below by Tania D. Russell, photography by Gorgeous Digital. These images are NOT STOCK and unauthorized usage is prohibited.)

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Next I wanted to do something a bit more “glam”, so I used a lot of the light gold shimmer on the center lid to create highlight and added the matte brown (lower right corner) to the outer corners of the eyes to add depth. The burgundy/bronze and light gold shimmer shadows blended like a dream dry or dampened. I found that when damp, the matte brown grabbed a bit which is something matte shadows can do. I was able to blend it out by using a bit more of the same brown with a dry brush. The lipcolor is Whispering Rose, also from the Supreme Color collection.

fashion fair supreme color collection beauty makeup by tania d russell makeup artist

Next I wanted to ramp it up to a full smokey eye. This is where I was wishing for a Quint instead of a Quad, because I was really wishing I had a black eyeshadow to work with (there is a matte black color in the Tunisian Nights quad). As it was, I was able to achieve more depth by using the matte brown color all over the lid, blending out into the burgundy/bronze, and rimming the eyes with black eyeliner. The lipcolor is a mix of Cognac and Deep Suede, topped with a touch of the Canary Diamond lipgloss, all from the Supreme Color collection.

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Finally, I got to do my favorite which is a simple but strong wash of the Emerald Green color blended out into the crease. For the lip color I believe I just used the Canary Diamond lipgloss.


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And there you have it. Four distinct looks from one eyeshadow quad. I was definitely impressed and I would recommend it to anyone considering this for themselves or their kit. Speaking of “for your kit”, Fashion Fair is apparently hosting a booth at the upcoming Makep Show trade show, and the Sam Fine Supreme Color Collection will be available (no idea if discounted).

Many thanks to Gorgeous Digital for their fabulous photographic & retouching work and our lovely model Ja’Veonna for making this article possible. ALSO – if you’re wondering about the fabulous jewelry worn in this shoot, we had the pleasure of shooting this story in the store, Made In Earth located in Venice CA on Abbot Kinney. Proprietor/Creative Director and master Deisgner Bunny Bedi hones raw gems/earth stones and even meteorites (!) into one-of-a-kind jewelry pieces. Due to the nature of honed stone, no two pieces are exactly alike. We were honored to be able to use his gorgeous creations in our photo-shoot. I became an instantaneous fan! (and yes, that is a “sand rug” on the floor of his store).

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Made In Earth store, Venice CA / Tiger Iron pendant by Made in Earth


Fabulous Photography: Gorgeous Digital
Makeup: Tania D. Russell
Fabulous Model: Ja’Veonna
Fabulous Location: Made in Earth

Disclosure: I was given the Tiger Iron pendant pictured in exchange for work on a shoot we did for Made in Earth. (yay me!) All cosmetics used were PURCHASED by me for this story.