Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Go Brazil(ian)!

Writing about brazilian waxing can be a sensitive topic since it's one of those topics that many are shy to know about. Actually, here's the thing, a lot actually are scouting for the perfect place to undergo brazilian or bikini waxing and some are clueless as to how it goes.

Take me for example, while I was about to finally go for it from a pro (I resulted to DIY microwave wax treatments), I asked around my model friends and even a friend who owns a spa that offers waxing how it goes. They're like "It really hurts!" From my own research, I saw that quite a lot actually undergo the process.

At my favorite neighborhood spa place Nail To Toe, I went for my treatment since it's near my place and I've been a longtime client and they've never disappointed me. "We'll give you the sphinx." They told me. I was like, "What do you mean?" They told me, "We leave nothing behind." I get it. Just like the sphinx cats.

The therapist briefed me days before as to what I'm supposed to do. She told me the best time to have my wax done and how long the hair should be (approximately 1/4 inch. Longer than that they would have to trim it as it could hurt). People who could be sensitive to pain may take ibuprofen an hour before the treatment. I decided against ibuprofen thinking that I could stand the pain since I've been doing waxing treatments via DIY kits.

During the day, I made sure everything should be clean. Yep, especially there so I was advised to shower first before the procedure using warm (not hot) shower. When I arrived, the waxing area had been prepared. Fresh linens were laid out and the wax was already pre-heated. The therapist sanitized her hands with alcohol and she told me to do the same to my own. A fresh and unused tongue depressor was prepared. Prepping the client with pre-epilating lotions and creams was done. I think this is used to numb the pain (other salons use baby powder to absorb excess moisture so the wax does not stick much) or to prevent the wax from sticking (much) to the skin. And I thought that waxing was just spread, rip, and writhe in pain.

Of course I will admit that the whole process hurts (those who have gotten waxed even on the legs would agree with me) since the bikini area is very sensitive and the skin is thinner than say, your underarms or arms. The therapist was like, "No. stay. I have to finish" She plucked the remaining hair that couldn't come with the wax. When I asked why not just apply wax again, she said that we couldn't apply the wax to an area that has been previously waxed because the skin could get burned. Threading is also an option for people who would want less pain. After an hour and a half or so, the whole process was finished and not a single strand of hair was spared. Post-waxing lotions were applied to the skin, which also helps ease pain and redness. I was also given instructions on post-waxing care in a leaflet.

I must say that I am very satisfied with their service. Not only was the process clean and well-executed, but therapist was very professional with her work. She answered all my questions well and even helped me relax (by the way, relax is one tip they told me. :) ) In fact, I already had my second session last week.

The second session is usually less painful than the first, and hair grows back finer and slower than say, using depilation creams and shaving. Maybe because I'm already used to it? Plus, I like how they follow international standards and rules and use high-quality equipment.

Do I recommend getting one? I sure do, especially since after Christmas, beachtime is fast approaching. For those who would want to defuzz without breaking the bank, I recommend this service. Price ranges from Php 550-650, depending on the service you're getting.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Review: Vidal Sassoon 4 Way Style-To-Go

Wheee! Come gift-giving after Christmas dinner, my sister handed me a rectangular box and when I opened it....

Tadaaaa.... and my hairstyling tools are almost complete. This slashes off a crimper, a straightener, a waver, and a micro-crimper instead of bringing a whole lot of stuff during shoots. I already have a curling iron already and a blow dryer. What's missing now is a spiral curler, but that's easy.

By the way, this should be used on DRY hair and not on wet hair.

The 4-way style-to-go has 4 pairs of interchangeable plates:

Shown from L-R: Straightening, crimper, and micro-crimper.

Here's what I just used: The deep waver:

1. Heats fast. No need to wait forever to be used
2. Delivers well. I see results 10 seconds after releasing the clamp.
3. Easy-to-use. Just clamp and release.
4. 100-240V.
5. Affordable (php 1590, and that's 4 tools already)

1. Metal and not ceramic. Don't forget to use a heat-protective spray to prevent fried locks.
2. Can be heavy and bulky.
3. The handle may take getting used to. My hand kinda cramped up after using. Kinda like the one you get after playing with your PSP too much.

I tried the waver just a while ago and I was pleased at how I immediately got the big retro hair I want (you can adjust the volume of hair you clamp up depending on the effect. Thinner sectioning means bigger volume and more texture. Thicker sectioning results to a gentler effect). After the whole crimping process: here's the look I got:

(no makeup. heeheehee)

Big hair here. I could even go wilder by teasing for shoots or high-fashion looks.

The handle could get a bit of getting used to. Oh, since the plates are metal, remember to condition hair to prevent damage and not to use this everyday as it could leave the hair dry and dull. But hey, on the occassion for retro waves and textures... bring on the heat!

Happy Christmas ladies! Stay pretty!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Shoots before the Holidays

Just yesterday I had a shoot with my good friend JC. He showed me pegs of the looks and most of them are beauty/headshots that could be good for a makeup artist's folio. I got to the studio on the calltime and did makeup on the model. The first look is supposed to be bronzed and smoky eyes with a lot of volume on the hair and the second look, the same makeup with flecks of eyeshadow thrown in, sort of like a play on color and texture.
Here's the first look done by JC's friend, Franz Manalo. Model is Ford Supermodel '07 Emerald Villahermosa.

Here's another shot this time playing with texture. Photo by JC Cerilla

Shoots are fun as always. The shoot yesterday was like a Christmas party. :) One last stretch before the Holidays.
Advanced Merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Warm Holiday Look

Just as the temperature drops down (I'm not complaining :) ), I thought I'd warm up with spicy and golden shades in this look I did two days ago:

Face: MAC Hyperreal Foundation in NC200 set with MAC Select Sheer Pressed Powder in NC30
Contour/Blush: Ever Bilena in Amethyst
Brows: Set and filled with body shop brown eyeshadow
Eyes: Gold creme eyeshadow as base on the lid and set with a matte golden brown color. Contour with a warm brown in a darker shade than lid color plus highlight the browbone in peach e/s. (no brands as you can use whatever you like). Dab a shimmery loose coppery bronze shade on lid for more highlights
Liner: Dark brown eyeliner on upper and lower lashlines. Line top lashline with an olive green liner for more pop of color.
Mascara: Lots of volumizing mascaras on curled lashes.
Lips: Red brown lipliner then filled in then topped with MAC lipstick in Hot Tahiti and blended in.

I didn't bother drying my hair here as I was running pretty late. This look would go well with spicy nail polish or a gold cocktail dress.

Happy Holidays everyone!

Friday, December 19, 2008

The Oxford Shoot Series

As I posted before, the shoot of Oxford Series has been completed, and I'm more than thrilled to share it with you. I love the international look of it.

The shoot started at 6 am and ended at 12. :) Love the view of Rockwell and Makati.

Very international indeed, plus everyone was very professional during the shoot and since we were already bonded, everything turned out great.
photo credits:
Photography and Digital Imaging: Darrel Pobre
Model: Chinz Ching
Art Direction and Styling: Dennis Celestial
Location: Oxford Suites

Makeupbybambi meets Fashion Icon

I was at the mall when I received a missed call when I was hanging out at Coffee Bean. I called the number and it was one of my photographer friends asking if I could do an emergency makeup on his shoot. I was like, "What do you guys have on hand?" and he said there's foundation, concealer, and lip balm and personal brushes of the model. I armed myself with hair gel and blush to serve as highlight (since he'll be doing black-and-white photography) and whatever equipment I have on hand and rushed to the studio.

Guess who the model was?

photo by Filbert Kung

Popular fashion icon and blogger Bryanboy! The guy's a real pro with the poses working each pose after pose after pose. Amazing and without any complaint! The shoot finished in two hours with gazillions of fantastic frames. I love how the picture turned out.. super classic and international level.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Study on Prosthetics

I googled on tutorials on how to make prosthetics in makeup. After extensive research, I found some easy instructions and I used whatever I had on hand substituting liquid latex for glue (where do you find liquid latex anyway here in Manila?)

So I made third degree burns out of glue, tissue, and lots of grease/wax-based paint/lipsticks, and Kryolan makeup"

I'll try using black spray-on haircolor to make things easier. The Kryolan lip rouge pallette I got proved to be better as special effects makeup rather than beauty makeup. It made realistic-looking bruises.

Oh, and here's the wound, which happened to be another favorite:

Bruised and lacerated and straight from a horror movie.

It looked so real a lot got freaked out when they saw it. To think I haven't placed fake blood yet, which I have yet to make. I added some texture inside the "peeled skin" using cotton rubbed in red/maroon grease paint.

I still have to master making slashes, as that would require a lot of dexterity on my part

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

A Heavenly Present

With my earrings post below, I got a lovely early Christmas gift from the master accesories designer himself that really was a total delight:

Love the earrings! Super duper thanks Dennis! He made these and the religious details are just exquisite. Perfect for remindin us the true meaning of Christmas, don't you think? I just fell in love with it. In fact, as I'm typing this, I'm already in my nightgown and with no more makeup at all...yet I'm still wearing the earrings. Heeheehee..

Of course I gotta model these first. Ganito muna, but yeah... you'll be seeing this pair in one of my photoshoots, with credits, of course! :)

Merry Christmas everyone. Only nine days to go!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

An Early Christmas Gift For Being Nice

Because I could no longer help it...

because it's one of my tried-and-tested favorites....

because I could no longer keep my joy and because there are only 2 tubes left....

I got myself that shade of red at the MAC counter without thinking twice.
I thought to myself... it's now or never. I want it I need it and only MAC Makati can assure me that it fits me fine because I have been their counter client/pest for almost 4 years and I've started buying from them after I became a makeup artist and fell head-over-heels with their products in the professional manner, if there's such a term :P
Oh... finally... I'm a proud owner of MAC LIPSTICK IN RUSSIAN RED! My eternal wishlist entry is finally scrapped off because I've decided to get one for myself. I've been wearing it for 4 straight days now and I'm loving every minute of it. It stays quite long even after eating (and even longer with lip seal). Plus, getting ready has never been easier. Although in this picture I've went for a bit of drama with a tad of a smokey eye, my other days have been just concealer, mascara, eyebrow pencil, and red lipstick and PLOOF! INSTANT GLAM!
With my red nails, red brush set, and red lipstick, looks like I'll have a very red Christmas, doncha think?
Anyone got themselves an early mini-Christmas gift like I did?

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

My Nina's Touch Experience

Yesterday, I visited my good friend and one of my mentors, Nina Dumpa, who happens to be one of the top makeup artists in the industry specializing on airbrush makeup. It was her birthday last week and since I knew she would be in her studio, I wanted to drop by and give her something.

I first encountered Ate Nina while browsing through Multiply. I saw her work and I found them very creative I was wowed at her techniques in makeup plus her skills in bodypainting. I also wanted to model for her before when she was looking for folio models but I was shy (I wasn't a pro makeup artist then yet). As fate may have planned it, we did meet and she became one of my idols, friends, and mentors in the industry. She taught me the value of sharing my talents to others, as she does to her assistants and even when she blogs.

A teacher, a makeup artist, a businesswoman, a mother, a friend, a photographer - Nina has played many roles and each role she plays she plays well. We have common friends also, and we love her not just for her work (Check them out at http://www.ninastouch.com/) but for her generous and loving heart. Despite her extensive portfolio and international accreditations tucked under her belt, she remains the down-to-earth girl that she always has been. Since we had some time together, she offered to give me an airbrush makeover and I gladly agreed. I asked her if I could blog about it and she said yes. So for the first time, I'd like to blog about my airbrush makeup experience.

After prepping my face (she likes to start with super clean and moisturized skin and lips), she concealed my blemishes and some undereye circles. She analyzed my facial structure, skin type, and studied my skin color to know what foundation she used. After mixing the foundation to approximately match my skin color, she proceeded airbrushing my face. The airbrush experience was really something. It felt cold but it was not uncomfortable. When I looked at the mirror, I saw how even my skin was (even up close). "The coverage is even and you don't need much retouching if you use airbrush foundation," she said. "This is very popular in the US and many celebrities use this." Despite the coverage, I didn't feel that I had a lot of makeup on. When I touched my skin, there was no caking of makeup. It didn't feel heavy or greasy or did I feel that my pores were being too suffocated.

After airbrushing the foundation, She set my makeup with powder and contoured my face. I found out that day that I had a square-shaped face. The corners of my forehead and jawline were defined and my face was not that long. She brought out my cheekbones and contoured my nose a bit, to make my face look 3D in photography makeup. Her hands were very light and I'm also very particular about having the lightest touch, especially when it comes to the eye part. She knew what colors to put and I love how she blended all colors to make them look seamless and my skin glowy. She knew what features to conceal, minimize, and enhance.

After contour and blush, eyes came next. She gave me an electric blue eyeshadow look that was not too 80s. "I'll give you an Eva Mendes-inspired look!" I love how my eyes looked huge afterwards. It was a smoky blue-plum color highlighted with a bit of yellow-gold. She also perfected my eyebrows and she made it frame my face and she didn't make it super thin nor super dark. Orange-gold lips were the first choice, but she decided on something darker next, which looked absolutely fabulous (pink, both our favorite colors). For my hair, they set it in curls and they were let loose in bouncy, sexy, Victoria's Secret model curls.

So this was me before airbush makeup:

No makeup, hair down... super simple

And here's me all made up looking fab by Nina's Touch

hair up

hair down

and hugging a pretty pink pillow

I love how she didn't totally change how I look but enhanced what I have with color, contour, and a little bit of her own creativity. The curls really stayed too and so did the makeup. Minimal retouching was needed. Of course, one plus to me was she had a very light hand and didn't poke or scratch. :) Nina's truly a pro.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Smoke and Ash : Suite Array Swatches

My latest MAC purchase because I couldn't resist leaving the MAC counter without buying anything:

MAC Suite Array eyeshadow in Smoke and Ash. (Retail Price: Php880, so you get two shadows for a little over the price of one eyeshadow pan). Both shades are
"matte with an overlay of pearl and provide sheer to medium buildable coverage with a beautiful luminescent effect."
The coverage is quite sheer, since I used only 1-2 swipes for the black one (smoke) but if you add more layers, you can go for a more opaque coverage like the silver one (ash). My main color usually is the silver one and I use the black to contour but you can make black the main color and add silver as a highlight.
To apply, MAC makeup artists recommend using a cream eyeshadow base or primer and then really layering for intensity as these are quite sheer. If you want a subtle wash, then 1-2 swipes would do. But for super-duper intense colors, you might need layering and a bit of patience.
Recommended tools: a dense eyeshadow brush, a sponge tip applicator, or your finger. :)

Wednesday, December 3, 2008


On the first day of December, I got an early Christmas present! Well, not really a present because I pre-ordered it a month ago and just got it this December and I'm just so happy and giddy!

It arrived yesterday morning while I was busy uploading pix in my folio but everything had to stop first for this... :D I couldn't resist opening it!

Ooooooohhhh! It's REEEED!

And look at all the brushes!

22 pcs of pure delight!
I've finally gotten another brush set from my experience of having back-to-back shoots. sometimes, my brushes don't have time to dry especially during the rainy weather. As of now, they're just newly washed and now waiting for them to dry.....
Review coming soon!