Wednesday, November 15, 2017

The Licensed, Professional, Makeup Artist

Good day Loves,

I had done a post a few months back in an attempt to help you make the best decisions when it comes to choosing your makeup artist for your wedding. I sincerely hope it helped some of you, or that you were able to pass the info on to someone who could use it.

This post has been a long time coming and it is not meant to stir the pot, nor get anyone's blood boiling. It is coming from my professional point of view and I deserve just as much respect in my industry as anyone else does in theirs.

This day in age it is absolutely possible for ANYONE to choose a profession to do either full time or 'on the side' and present themselves as a pro simply by putting in into writing. ANYONE can make a Facebook page, instagram account, website, YT  etc...etc.... That is absolutely fine as well, but, do NOT label yourself as a pro. You can have business cards made, blogs written, tweet this, twit that, and get IG FAMOUS ( whatever that means). I could in reality, make a website stating that I am a plastic surgeon, have a diploma framed, make some business cards, a website etc, rent a space and start doing terrible surgeries by next week. Extreme example yes, but that would only last for so long before I would be sued or outed as a fraud, for making people look terrible. As I just stated that is an extreme example but you cannot just mess with peoples faces. Even if it is just with makeup.

"Hobby artists" see this as, 'fun' or 'extra cash' etc, which is fine. But when you are charging people for a service and do not protect yourself or the client, or have gained your knowledge from instagram, you are a makeup lover!! There is nothing wrong with that, but this is a world where sanitation and safety are of the utmost importance. You have ZERO business taking money from anyone for your 'services'.

I cannot count the clients who have come to me and stated they had a trial or their makeup done by someone who advertised themselves as a makeup artist, only to get their appointment and have the 'artist' pull out their own personal makeup kit to use on the client or even worse, have the client bring their own makeup to apply. If you see this happen, run the other way. This person is not a professional. You are opening yourself up to bacteria of epic proportion. Disease and infection are easily spread through mucus membranes of the body, eyes, mouths etc. The artists tools are constantly touching these areas of the face and you need to protect yourself against conjunctivitis, herpes and endless forms of bacteria.

These hobby artists don't take into account what will happen to them if they get sued for a severe infection suffered by a client, which THEY caused. A lawsuit against them for a slip or fall which happened when a paying client came into their home to have a trial etc.

Social media is a platform which is great to gain recognition, or launch your business and help you establish yourself. But you need to have something to back it up. You cannot be a person who only takes selfies and does his/her own makeup. Doing it for fun for friends and family also does not qualify you. If it does, then I've been a makeup artist since I was twelve years old.

If you have a profession which you went to school for, nursing, accountant, teacher would you enjoy someone coming along and grabbing your title because they home school, or do their own taxes, or take their elderly fathers blood pressure daily? Don't get me wrong, there are many people doing makeup who were not formerly trained. Fantastic artists who are naturally gifted and are phenomenal. These people have paying clients and actually work as makeup artists in real life! I don't have a second job to pay the bills, this is it. It's my full time gig. When you work hard for as many years as I have and have established yourself, you can branch into doing what you love. Exclusively. Many photographer friends have done this and it's a beautiful thing to watch. Don't get me started on the 'faux-tographer'. Everyone these days buys makeup, or a camera and are suddenly doing 'Glamour shots by Deb' in their basement. Ugh. Fourteen year old girls in their bedrooms who have been thrown Daddy's credit card in a MAC store, preaching via YT as a 'makeup artist' and 'teaching' the masses? No, just no.

To those currently taking offense, by all means, if you love makeup, love doing makeup etc, carry on. Just have respect for the professionals in the industry. Don't label yourself to be something you aren't. Be a makeup junkie, be a makeup geek, a makeup lover, be a girl who loves doing makeup!

The truth in all of this is reading this post will not stop anyone, it only takes one trial or appointment for a client to run in the other direction from someone who disappoints them or just simply does not have the knowledge to back up their 'skills'. I get emails daily from clients looking for help after a terrible trial, a makeup they washed off, disappointed brides etc... Heck, I've had so many recently come to me out of desperation because they have been cancelled on last minute by the 'artist' just because. The weak get weeded out quickly.

This post is also not to be construed as me trying to monopolize my city, I am extremely busy and refuse to take on more than I can handle. I have burnt myself out in the past. I book two years in advance for weddings and work with about a half dozen photographers regularly as well as my regular clients.

This is an industry which needs to be protected. Do your research when booking, watch for sanitary practices. Ask for credentials. You are paying a professional, make sure they are one! If you sign up for a makeup class on a weekend it should be fun, professional and you should leave with some actual knowledge. Pros don't use our fingers to apply everything to faces, we aren't filthy pigs, we don't hire strippers for class intermission, we don't post or respond in emojis (like a 12 year old). We aren't late,  we don't cancel, we put the clients first. Always. We do not have the business sense of a burnt marshmallow (thanks Alex).

I don't mean to sound hypocritical. I do YT and IG and Twitter and all of it, but I HAVE the knowledge, the skill, the training. That being said, there are bigger names on you tube (let's call him Dwayne Moss), who claim to be professionals and have had the wool pulled over the eyes of millions for years without any actual credentials to back up their claims. He's a complete fraud IMO. No portfolio, no work in print that I've ever seen, floating on bs info, click bait and a self proclaimed title. Steals images and pumps out some of the stupidest 'tips' I've ever heard. Annoying. You're not untouchable sir. Give credit to those who actually ARE makeup artists, not just claim to be.I have been doing this as a professional for twenty one years. I hope this lends some insight into how a professional sees things. If you bought a avon, mary kay, arbonne makeup kit, you are not a makeup artist. You are a makeup enthusiast, and a part time sales person. You enjoy doing makeup. Please stop taking the artist out of my artistry.



Monday, June 9, 2014

Big Wreck - New Music Fest - Sudbury - June 7th, 2014

I will begin this post with letting my followers in the beauty industry that this post has absolutely nothing to do with makeup. It does however have everything to do with my favourite band. If you love Canadians (which you obviously do) feel free to keep reading and check them out for yourself. The album release is tomorrow June 10th, 2014 for Canadians.

Ok, so here it is. The review of my Saturday night. For those who are unaware, it was my 38th birthday on Sunday. What a twist of fate and perfectly tailored weekend for TOAD to cancel their show and Big Wreck to fill in. I still have a hard time believing that all actually happened. What a gorgeous mess of chaos. I promise you this will be a terribly shitty review. I barely remember a thing, my mind is a damn blob.

The Glorious Sons took the stage at around 8:15 or so and were really great, they were followed by Monster Truck who rocked the stage and amped up the crowd for sure. Their songs get quite a bit of airplay here and were received very well. I was sitting in the front row seats for their portion of the show secretly planning how I would be weaseling my way to the front, standing area against the metal fencing. I was hoping the crowd would dissipate after Monster Truck and that is indeed what happened and I made my move. I then planted my feet and would NOT be moving. It took a bit for the road crew to set everything up, some drunks were shouting nonsense to hurry and I wanted to drop elbows on all of them.

The local rock radio guy announced them and was sure to reiterate that they filled in last minute and saved the day for Sudbury.

The boys came out to a very warm reception and they were all smiles. I was nuts trying to figure out what they would open with. I was so shocked and surprised that it was "Look What I Found".
I, of course sang my damn head off and screamed like a complete fool and loved every second of it. Next it was onto "That Song" which was warmly received and had the whole crowd singing along.

After they were done, Ian spoke about Sudbury and that they had great memories here and were happy to be back. I don't know if they all had a great nights sleep or the fact that they were hanging with the Monster Truck guys or what but the entire band was all smiles all night and genuinely having a real great time together. They were constantly teasing each other and just had a GREAT chemistry and vibe. The crowd loved seeing the positivity and responded positively in return.

Third song was ready to start....I was busy swatting away the drunken fool of a woman who was stretching her arm literally across my best friends face trying to get Dave's attention, making googly eyes at him and snapping her fingers and drooling all over herself. Due to this distraction I missed Ian saying "Where's Dana?" People started tapping me and I heard him say... "Oh, there she is!" He then said "Happy Birthday! This ones for you!" Rips into "Hey Mama". Dead. It is my favourite and as I explained to Buk (James) I feel almost guilty for loving it as much as I do. It rips my soul from my body and takes it to the moon and back, I'm gone. After so many years of nostalgia with so many BW songs, this one has just engulfed my heart and mind. It was an epic dedication to say the least and pretty much made my life. Only to be outdone by Ian finishing a song and bending down to give me his slide. A few people tried grabbing it from him but he swatted them away nicely and locked eyes with me and I told him I had it. He then went to the mic and said Happy Birthday again :)

Suffice to say everything after that was a blur. I know Bohemian Rhapsody was brought into a song and I cannot even tell you which one. Ian and Dave did a little battle a few times, their instruments answering each other in this melodic tango. Dave had a great energy as did Paul and Brian. Brian played his guitar and the banjo at the same time during Ladylike. His guitar would hang around his neck while he strummed the banjo from behind on its stand moving fluently from one to the other without skipping a note. Chuck was a monster on the drums. Paulo had a perma-smile and had great chemistry with everyone on that stage. Paulo's stance reminds me a bit of Ken's. Dave and Paulo were constantly singing and mouthing the words to every song. Near the end of the show, during "The Oaf" Ian did his down tuning as he did on the bag of tricks release, and the others left the stage and let the crowd soak in the feverish solo. So amazing. They then teased Chuck and would not end the song, making him drum like a hurricane with sticks, he kept up and was INSANE. It was so fun to watch and experience. They smiled the whole time and were just having so much fun, it was so great to watch.

They ended the night with the crowd singing along and very into it. I don't even think they were off the stage before the crowd was chanting "encore". The Glorious Sons and Monster Truck guys were all on stage alongside in the wings singing and taking pictures and smiling having a blast watching.

They encored with "Shout/Falling to Pieces". Then just like that it was over. It will never in this lifetime be possible to outdo that night. My husband said once we were home "Short of me paying them tens of thousands to come play a private concert for you, there is no way I could have ever topped this or had it be more perfect for you".

I am eternally grateful to Ian for his generosity and for making my night so supreme. It is one I will never forget.


Sunday, February 9, 2014

How To Choose a Makeup Artist for Your Wedding Day

Photo Courtesy of Stacey Lalande
Photo Courtesy of Stacey Lalande

Hello ladies and congratulations on your upcoming wedding. I have wanted to do a post on this subject for a very long time and decided that today is that day. I hope it helps some of you grasp a better understanding about bridal makeup and what to look for in an artist.

RESEARCH:  You’ll need to do your research. You may already have an idea of an artist you’d like to use, perhaps a recommendation or someone you have heard of.  A recommendation is the best kind of information to have when it comes to selecting your artist. It gives you a real account of somebody else’s experience and the more you can read, the better. That being said, makeup represents your personal style and what may be one persons cup of tea, may not be anothers. Never ONLY take someones word for it. Seeing is believing. Many professional make up artists have websites that will give you an idea of their work through portfolios and testimonials. Use this to see the styles that the artist can create, the range of their ability and their level of professionalism. Some people recommend someone not having actually had their services used personally, but rather a friend of a friend of a friend used this person once and they heard they were good. That also brings up the this person actually knowledgable? Or did they buy some make up and figure, "Hey, this can't be difficult!" "I'm going to be a make up artist!" A trained professional, knows about contouring, highlighting, face shapes, skin types etc.  Just because you may personally be terrible at applying make up on yourself, it should not give you the mindset to just settle for an "artist" because "It is better than I could do on myself."
If you are going to ask anyone, ask your photographer. They are usually the ones stuck trying to fix bad makeup later when editing photos and this creates an enormous amount of extra work for them. They will know which artists work they barely need to touch or edit. Make up to go out is NOT the same as make up for photography. Looking decent in person and looking flawless in photos are two entirely different things. Your artist needs to know about finishes of products, how will they work with flash photography, hot days, cold days etc. Oily skin, large pores, etc.

TLC Photography

FIND YOUR STYLE:  Choosing a date well ahead of your wedding day will mean one less thing to think about as your day draws nearer as your trial should leave you feeling confident and relaxed about how you will look in front of all of your guests when the time comes. Having an idea of the sort of style you’d like is always an advantage. It is useful to take with you a few pictures of styles you like to give your artist an idea of the look you’re hoping to achieve. A fun and creative way to do this is to make a collage of images from your hair and make up ideas, to the colour scheme and theme of your wedding. This will help your artist subtly coordinate your look with the rest of your day. It will also help you to get to know one another, which will become very important in the crucial few hours leading up to your big moment.

Click photo to visit Jonathan's website.

LASTING ALL DAY: Airbrush make up is NOT magic. It was confused with the photoshop term years ago and has confused brides since. Airbrush foundation is liquid foundation with added water to thin it and some silicone additives. It is very time consuming, a thin application which needs to be layered to achieve a flawless look. Airbrushing for body painting yes, bridal no, if an artist uses the proper face primers and setting sprays, the same look is acheived with any foundation medium. I have never had a brides face come off before or during the wedding ceremony. In fact, brides will tell me they partied well into the night and they still looked flawless at 4 a.m. I have literally had brides go to sleep exhausted after the festivities, go to sleep and wake up looking great and go to the gift opening. True story.

Click Photo to visit Jonathan's Website

NAME BRAND MAKEUP: Expensive makeup, name brands etc....Society, ads etc. have brainwashed us in MAC MAC MAC, Clinique, Stila etc.... Don't get me wrong some are great, and I own plenty...but some are bad and a HUGE waste of money. A good artist can use anything and turn you into a supermodel.

TLC Photography Sudbury

LISTENING: If an artist doesn't listen, do not be afraid to speak up. If you ask for something in particular and they are doing whatever they want, or using colours you really don't like, let them know. If they do not respect your wishes or work with you to compromise, using their expertise, coupled with what you want, run the other way. I have heard stories of glitter on brides, brides being shushed by the artist, brides washing their faces or literally crying when they looked in the mirror. I have actually been called in emergency basis by brides to fix someone elses mess, because they didn't want to hurt the artists feelings. Hence, the importance of a trial run.

TLC Photography Sudbury

DO A TRIAL RUN:  Some women may choose to go to a makeup counter for their bridal makeup because its cheaper, or may choose to have a friend do their makeup for their wedding day because its free. While in theory these options may sound great, the reality of it is, if you end up hating the way it turns out, you’re stuck with it. The bad thing with getting your makeup done at places like department stores or drug stores, is the majority of the personal working there aren’t real makeup artists, and are not trained in how to properly analyze and work on different face shapes and colors. A few are, many aren't so be sure to ask questions about their credentials. They may only be knowledgeable about store products and be there to SELL store products. Being able to do a good makeup job on yourself is one thing, but being able to do it on someone else’s face shape or skin color is a totally different ball game. Having a trial run of your makeup for your wedding day is essential. A trial run is basically a preview of what you will look like on your wedding day. Most professionals will charge for a trial, being that they are spending their time, money, and supplies doing this makeup application. In my opinion, this is money well spent. A professional will assess and analyze your face and personality to help determine how soft or bold you’d like your bridal makeup to be.  Additionally, if the makeup is not done to your liking for the trial, you have the time to communicate with your makeup artist, in order to make the necessary changes right then and there. If your artist DOES NOT have a website or online portfoilio, which lets face it, these days in kind of ridiculous. Anyone can create a facebook page or website free of charge. Do the trial.

Photo by Fuel Multimedia

LASHES: Quality, human hair strips or individual lashes are really essential to your overall look. It finishes the look and adds so much beauty and femininity to the make up application. It does not matter how long, full, dark your lashes are. You want the eyelashes, trust me. That being said you don't want dollarama eyelashes or thick band lashes that scream fake. If an artist is coming at you with Wal-Marts halloween end of season clearance lashes, run the other way.

I hope this gives you a little insight into what to look for when choosing your artist. Yes, I am a professional of almost twenty years, but there are indeed some artists who are self taught and fabulous. There are also some that came out of nowhere and think they are the cats meow. Someone who constantly toots their own, best be able to produce the skills they claim to own. Your wedding day is not the day you want to find out you made the wrong choice because you didn't do your research.

Feel free to email me with questions through my website here or in the posting area below and I will be happy to answer them. I am in no way against sharing information nor do I try to monopolize the city for myself. When you brand yourself correctly, the competition becomes irrelevent.

Much Love as Always,
Dana xo

Friday, January 31, 2014

A little drama :)

So as we all know I took a long hiatus from you tube. I was busy raising babies and life in General was just far too hectic to make time for videos. I have been slowly getting back into things and have posted a few videos over the last few weeks. I did a look yesterday, just playing around really. I didn't record it, but due to the amount of requests, I will be recreating it for you tube in the next week or two.

I used make up geeks "mermaid" as well as "corrupt" MAC "soft brown to blend as well as a teal from the original bh cosmetics 120 palette. As a highlight, I used "opal" by MUD (make up designory) The lashes are from Dolluxe lashes and they are called "Lashing out loud".

Here is a photo of the look!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Sigma Eye Shadow Base Swatches

Sigma Beauty has released the long awaited eye shadow bases. They sell individually at a cost of $13.00 for a 5g jar. This is the same amount of product as a MAC paintpot but at a much better price.

The packaging is round and sleek, a bit thick for the size of the product pot, but I am not picky about packaging. I care about the product and if it works.

There is a inside cap to help prevent drying of the product. Keep this inner seal if you want your product to last. A big downfall with MAC fluidline and Paintpots is that they dry out so incredibly fast which makes them difficult to work with and thicker than they should be.

These are incredible pigmented whole being SO thin and creamy in consistency. I love that about them. Being a makeup artist I work on all skin types and all ages. Putting a thick cakey base on an eye which is aging will cling and look TERRIBLE! So these are a god send!

The"Bare" Bases

 In my opinion, persuade is an almost exact dup for MAC paintpot in "painterly"

The "Dare" Bases



Provoke is the only colour in all honesty that I could do without as I do not use peaches on myself or clients. These swatches were all taken in natural light and the camera does not do them justice.

If you prefer to have the three bases in one kit, it is an option at a price of $36.00 USD . Including a brush. Which is a savings of $3.00 per three bases if bought as a kit. I personally took them out of the kit and put them all into their own traincase as well as all the individual eyeshadows. That is what works better for me :)

Now, what everyone wants to know is how do they hold up for creasing. So far so good. I have not used all colours for a day of wear as I very rarely wear makeup at home on a daily basis. I did use Sculpt which is a shimmery charcoal on my daughter Madison for a school talent show last week where I had her done up like Lady Gaga. I did her makeup at 6:15 a.m. and she came home at 3pm. Her eyeliner was a mess, and there was a very, very faint crease line in one area on her lid after nine hours which is pretty good on an oily teenager with all the sweating in the talent show etc. As I wear them I will continue to share my thoughts on how they last throughout the day.

Dana xo

Saturday, February 16, 2013

New Sigma Individual Eye Shadows & Brow Products

Hi Loves!!

Sigma Beauty has become a real front runner as far as innovation, customer service as well as creating a constant flow of new items to keep us inquisitive as to what they are going to pull out of their hats next. I know sigmas first stab at a makeup line a few years back did not go over well with many people, but to this day "Sweet Virginia" from that line is my absolute favourite eye shadow of all time. I rationed my first pan over the past few years. I have a brand new pan in my cupboard and I may cry when I tear the packaging off of it, knowing it is now extinct!

My Sweet Virginia - Gone but never forgotten *sniff*
The new line of shadows came out about two years ago and was received well. Some criticism was given regarding the packaging being quite thick and bulky and there was a demand to not be required the whole palette, rather choose a few shades and be able to purchase individually. I will admit with the first Bare, Flare & Dare, there were a few great shades, some not so great. Some were very pigmented, some sheer, some chalky. I had very mixed feelings about all of them.

When the Sigma Beauty Expert Brow Design Kit came out I immediately fell in love with it and cannot even begin to explain how much I use it daily as a makeup artist. Again, people really wanted to be able to buy the palette powders, pencils and highlight pencil broken down into individual products. Owning this palette makes sense as a makeup artist, however, the average brunette does not need brow powders for a red-head. Quite simply they would likely not be used which is kind of a waste so I can understand the desire. Find my full review on the complete kit here :)

Here is the good news, Once again Sigma has listened and every eyeshadow is now available for individual purchase INCLUDING all shades from the Paris Palette which is my favourite palette by any company...maybe ever. The Paris palette was limited edition and is currently on sale for $49.00 rather than  $59.00. I believe until supply runs out. You can still use the 10% off code on it as well for even BIGGER savings. You can find my review on the Paris Palette here. The brow powders, dual ended brow pencil, gel, as well as the dual ended highlight pencil, can now be purchased on their own. The brow powders are now DUOS!! That's right, there are TWO shades in each! The brow powder duos are $14.00 which is very reasonable!! Both brow pencils as well as the gel are each $12.00.

As of yet, the "Defining Eyes" palette created with the fantastic Tiffany D's colours are not available for individual purchase.

The formula has been improved for the eye shadows and they are ALL fantastic. The pigmentation, the texture, the blend-ability. Seriously. Epic work. As I stated before, the first palettes were not love at first swatch for all shades. I tried not to judge and gave them all a fair shot, but some shades were just not up to par, as hard as I tried to make them work. I knew the formula had changed so I was nervous swatching the individuals for fear or disappointment. As I sat I found myself saying, wow....WOW! Over and over.

Without further ado, here are the swatches!! I DO NOT have any sort of light coloured base underneath, these are the true colours. They are creamy (for a powder) if that makes sense and I cannot stress enough that these are incredible and with a selection of 30 shades, there is something for everyone.

 Blues & Greens



 Neutrals, Greys & Blacks

Yellows & Oranges

 Purples & Plums

Eye shadows are $11 each, but as always you can save 10% using the monthly code "BASE2013" (valid through Feb. 28th)

Brow Pencil Only Available in Medium/Dark
Its dual ended and a thick pencil. I prefer a thin pencil personally.

 Dual ended, matte and shimmer highlighting pencil
Also a thick pencil, which I like, for under the brow.

 Shimmer highlight, Matte highlight, Medium Brow Pencil, Dark Brow Pencil
(I do wish the "dark" was a hair pun intended)

 I have used the brow gel only a few times, I personally do not need it for mine but have used it on clients.

 Brow powder packaging

Brow Powder Duo in  "Light"

 Brow Powder Duo in  "Medium"

 Brow Powder Duo in "Dark"
This is the colour I use on myself. The dark is very dark in the powder form and works great on people with VERY dark hair.

 Brow Powder Duo in "Auburn"

 Swatches are in the order of photo
Light (2 Shades)
Medium (2 Shades)
Dark (2 Shades)
Auburn (2 Shades)

10% Discount Code for February is