Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Weekly Lash Hauls from Mang Ed

Love them for opening up the eyes or hating them for giving the lids a workout, false lashes have been a staple in my kits, shoots, weddings, and other gigs. It does take an extra ten minutes or so to put on, a bit more for tricky eyes but the effects are fabulous. I have lashes in different lengths and materials... rainbow, natural, glam, everything, since I don't know what I need.

Lash staples are of course, the natural falsies that we use for bridal. Not only are they cheap, but they're entry-level length and thickness similar to lash extensions for a low-commitment lash length should mascara not be enough. When our usual source of falsies increased its rate to 10 pesos more expensive, the search for more affordable lashes came to be.

Thanks to Mikee and Rza, I was introduced to Mang Ed when I was complaining at where to get natural-looking falsies at a cheaper price. It's now my third time to buy lashes from Mang Ed and I wanted to share them to all of you. Mang Ed has been supplying lashes to freelance makeup artists, makeup students, makeup addicts, clubs, showgirls, and even celebrities. He told me that Iya Villania gets her lashes from him.

Yesterday while waiting for Rza, I was talking to Mang Ed after purchasing lashes and he allowed me to photograph his products. He's actually very friendly and coordinating with him is a breeze. He's never late, never misses appointments, and would always answer text messages.

This is Mang Ed's bagful of lashes! Sometimes on a good day with lots of customers, that bag comes home empty.

Here are the usual lashes for bridals and beauty editorials.

Medium thickness for those who want extra oomph. These are Rza's favorites.

Ultra-thick and ultra-long for avante garde shots.

They are actually human hair lashes. His wife makes them and he delivers them to his clients. It's a husband-and-wife team of business. He even showed me a picture on his cellphone of him and his children. He actually has a son who's a lawyer, who finished his studies just right in time.

His lashes are actually very affordable. You buy them in bulk. A bundle of 1 dozen lashes costs Php 200 bucks, so that's roughly Php 17.00 per pair. The medium thickness ones cost Php 300 for 12 pairs of course and the extra long ones are Php 100 a pair. Aside from delivering the lashes and meeting up with clients, Mang Ed also takes part on production by making the boxes as well.
Applying the lashes are actually quite easy. I like that they're very easy to handle and they mold in well to the eye shape. I use DUO lash glue to apply falsies and adjust with tweezers. Are they heavy? If you're not used to wearing falsies, they could take quite some time getting used to. If you're used to wearing falsies, they're okay. I just cut off the edges since I find it more comfortable that way.

My own lash haul. See how long the avante garde ones now. Mang Ed tells me the ultra-long falsies are the ones used by drag queens doing shows. But with the right concept, they could be very fasyon too.

Actually, we're planning a meetup soon for makeup artists who want to purchase lashes, so holler up if you're interested to purchase a bundle. He usually does meetups for a minimum of 5 dozen orders.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Alejandro Makeup Tutorial

Ever since Lady GaGa's video "Alejandro" came out a few months ago, I fell in love with it and the music. Sure it's a bit risque with a whole lot of shock value. But if it were not, then it would not be GaGa. The video has got a lot of reactions on both sides, either way, it did get a lot of attention, anyhow.
And what did I decide to do? I made a tutorial based on Lady GaGa's look. In Alejandro, Lady GaGa had sort of the dark lip and neutral eye look. The eye colors were more on white and ivory with lots of shine and shimmer instead of smoke and we have the matte red lip. Her first look with the funky spectacles and veil here had blonde brows and you could clearly see a matte red lip in a cool color. The eyes were almost neutral and swept a shimmery bone white shade. However, I thought our eyes could get lost in the shimmer if we don't have a defined crease such as she does so I decided to combine that look with this look below:
The brows are somewhat defined and there's a bit of depth on the crease. I'll make this look like an everyday version of Alejandro, something that you could wear during nights (or what the heck, days out). It's not as pale, since I don't have the Alejandro lighting but I used a cool palette rather than my usual warm. Browns are more taupe with a bit of purple in it rather than warm rich brown.

Shall we start our Alejandro look then? Then we shall.First up as usual is foundation. I'm fond of matte so I layed low on shimmer foundation. I used foundation that's close to my skin color. One thing aside from Lady GaGa's toned body is her flawless complexion so I made sure that my skin looks clean and devoid of redness or blemishes with proper coverage. We'll be using red lip color so we have to make sure the skin is clear since red lipstick could enhance redness and blemishes.

Next up is to contour cheekbones and nose to mimic Lady GaGa's sharp bone structure. I think contour gives the face not only overall warmth but it also gives dimension. I didn't want my face to look flat so here I go.

After contour, I framed the face by defining my brows. Brows wouldn't be too dark here but I wanted them to be wearable, so the rule of a whole or half-step lighter than head hair color applies here.
I used a base since I'll be using lots of frost and shimmer and I want a base for my colors to hold. I used a cream eyeshadow in a neutral color but for those with creasing problems, then I recommend leveling up with UDPP or paint pots.For the browbone highlight, I used a matte ivory color and blended this in.The lid would be a shimmery eyeshadow in an ivory color. A perfect example would be the hi-shine color of MAC in Nylon. I like using this to highlight the part near the tear ducts but I think it would be excellent for this look.

I used a taupe color or gray-brown color to contour the crease so my eyes aren't that washed out.

On the outer corner, I used a deeper color in the same cool brown family on the outer V and extend this to the lower lashline. For more impact, you could line the lower lashline with brown eyeliner and set it with that same color of powder.

So in progress, your eyes should look like something like this.

To define the eyes some more, Line the top lashline with black liner very thinly. You could opt to wing it or not. Mascara as usual. Lastly, line the waterline with white liner, just like Lady GaGa's first look. Highlight the inner corner of the eyes with the same shimmery lid color or white shimmery eyeshadow.
Although Lady GaGa looks pale here, we should not if we don't want to. So a natural-colored cheek color should be swept on the apples of the cheeks, but nothing too bold or raspberry-like. However, if you prefer pale, then blush could be skipped and highlight could be used for that lift and contrast.
Now what makes the look rarr? Red lips. The lips are very matte. Matte lips equals dry lips though so make sure to prep the lips with lip balm prior to lipstick application (I do this during skin care). Line lips with red lipliner and fill in. Next, brush a matte bright red lipstick (I used a cool colored red such as MAC Ruby Woo). Blot and reapply.

So here's my Lady GaGa look :)

It's not really scary or anything, and obviously it isn't a total copy of her Alejandro look but it's pretty much the same concept adapted for everyday wear. I prefer the lip being sculpted and shapely so I was really OC with the lipliner.

And in the spirit of Alejandro, let me share with you something... a recent cover I did of the song:

Thursday, September 23, 2010

My Period SOS Kit

Here's something to sorta aleviate my period each time it comes by every month. I was happy to receive a Happy Period Kit a while ago, which contains several items which would help aleviate symptoms of that time of the month. I hate my period. I really do. During that time, everything is uncomfortable and yucky. Those five horrid days of the month are what I call my panget days - occasional breakouts, bloat, sensitivity, name it. After that it's dyosa self again. The only good side I have of a regular period is that I have a healthy reproductive system, but otherwise, the bloat, PMS, and all that makes me wish I'd be a boy. My fainting spell a couple of weeks ago made me add ferrous sulfate during those days.

So although I can't completely remove my period during my system, this pretty violet kit from Whisper contains several essentials for me to at least have a happy period.

Chocolate - comfort food. What's the first thing we all grab on to when we're upset? That bar of chocolate. Remember Elle Woods when Warner broke up with her? She downed Milky Ways, and they were not the fun size. Nevermind if the calories go up to my behind. I need my happy hormones. I'll work out later, which by the way, is a must during the period.

Tea - tea calms the tummy owies and the senses. A cup of tea never fails to make me feel better. During our period, we need all the feel-good stuff in the world. Not to mention tea has certain health benefits. I like chamomille to help me sleep.

Hot Compress - trips to the clinic during high school days when you have your dysms? The nurse gives you a familiar red or blue hot bag to place on the tummy area. The temperature warms up the muscle and comforts the pain.

Spa in a Can - This cute contraption was the "cannot be missed part" in the kit. I was quite intrigued. It's actually an aromatherapy balm. The direction was to rub a small amount between the palms of the hands, then cup the hands over the nose and mouth and take deep breaths. The scent immediately calms the senses and the peppermint sort of clears the mind too. Perfect when our stress levels are heightened during these days huh? Most of all, it's organic!

Ibuprofen - painkillers are our last resort when all else fails or we don't have a hot compress within our reach and the pain is just too much to bear. But don't take too much of these because it could build resistance. However, I do understand that we are only human, and we need fast relief. Make sure though, that you're not allergic to ibuprofen or NSAIDs before taking anything internally.

Whisper Pads - because we need proper protection from leaks, stains, and all things yucky. The cottony cover feels like second skin and won't suffocate our very delicate skin.

I guess this is definitely rescue for every girl during those days. While I may not look like Angelina Jolie overnight, at least I'd feel better with a bit of happy and calm. Now only if Brad Pitt personally delivered my happy period kit then it would be a happy happy period. :P Okay I kid again.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Weekend Calls For Short (Thrifted) Dresses

Hey it's a weekend and there's nothing to do... much. PANIC NOW!

No, don't panic! Declare it a short-dress weekend. And even better... they're all thrifted!

This shift dress has been hanging for quite a long time in my closet. I've worn it for like around four times I guess but never got to use it. I used to wear it for the office and sometimes I'd get teased at since it was too short. Too short? It's normal for me! :P I like short skirts, short dresses, and short-shorts. I think they're more practical during the rainy season than the flowy long maxis, which I save for summertime.

'Di yan short! Conservative lang kayo. :P

Dress: G2000 (hand-me-down)
Bag: Cole Vintage
Shoes: Aerosoles
Shades: YSL

That dress technically is a hand-me-down from one of my sisters. So in my closet it goes. I'm happy it fits me, although it was shorter for me than it was for her. But I like it that my hemlines go mid-thigh. I think the print is very retro-like. Twiggy much? I blow-dried my hair that day, that's why it's not that wild. In place though, I got shades to cover the no-makeup face. I

Come Sunday, I wanted something, well, sorta feminine. I was with Tin just last week at Robinsons BF and we decided to hit the ukay at Jaka, where she frequents. Tin sources out her funky clothes and beat-up chic bags at the ukays. So there we go. She fell in love with vintage-y ruffly dresses and when I pulled out an ecru Swiss lace dress, she squealed that she wanted to use it for her shoots. I loved the dress too and said I'd buy it but I'd lend it to her in photoshoots.
Lace dress: Ukay
Bag: Cole Vintage (peeking behind me)
Shoes: Naturalizer

The thing I like with ukay-ukay is that I get really good deals and funky pieces that aren't found anywhere. Okay, so these are old clothes but hey... kumukulong tubig at laba lang katapat nyan! Heck top fashion models also go to the ukay-ukay even! Still in good condition though. This one is short, like it goes like 3 inches below my butt. My solution is to wear them with white short-shorts. Still, It's a dress. If I want it to be a top, pair them with leggings. But I like it as a dress, and a dress shall it be. The box behind me holds my Sew Cute Plueys, which I brought in case it rains. It looks pretty cute with them too. It didn't rain though and the sun was shining with feeling. Bu-mmer. Why did I choose moccasins instead of dainty sandals? Wala lang!
Never thought these old-new dresses could rock it still. :) That's what they say I guess, how one's old junk could be another one's treasure. Lurve!

Shoots: Tanya, Priscilla, and Leslie

Unexpected serendipity when I received an SMS from a photographer I worked with asking if I would like to be a makeup artist for their shoot the next day. It came at a right time because I'd be meeting a friend also that day so it was a perfect way to maximize my day.

South traffic was the only hitch I got (the alternate route was pretty clogged as well) when I got there, plus the horrible weather. When I got to the place, I set up my station and proceded to work with my first model. I was given the freedom to do what look I wanted on her. I asked if I could take a look at her outfits first and if she had any preference. She just asked if she could wear her hair straight since she's always photographed in curls.
Here's Leslie When you look at her, you immediately get reminded of anime girls with her expressive eyes and high cheekbones. I gave her a cool, rosy scheme of pink and purple without looking too Barbie, since her clothes were a bit sexy. Again, the classic pastely pink lips were used. I know I'm a matte fan but here, since I wanted her to look healthy, I put a bit of sheer shimmer on the tops of her cheeks for a healthy highlight.

Tanya is a dancer. She told us that it's her first time to model ever, but from her pictures, she looks like she has been doing this all her life. Her expressive blue eyes and platinum blonde hair are the first two things I was drawn to. It made her look angelic but since I already had a pink scheme done, I wanted something warmer to bring out and intensify the blue eyes. I chose copper and amber for her eye color followed by peach on her lips. The stylist, Mes, wanted a clean look on her too, for very basic beauty shots. Actually, most of the looks I did here are bridal-inspired shots, since I plan to focus on weddings again for the rest of the year and next. For platinum blonde hair, it was quite tricky to know what brow color to use. I went for a light color on the brows like charcoal brown then used Girl Boy to soften it. I didn't bring my Sophisticated brow set with me that day. darn. But I guess it's time to get used to Girl Boy now. I'm glad I used peach and browns for Tanya because she wasn't a fan of pink. I like how the color palette warmed her skin quite nicely and brought out the blue in her eyes.

Priscilla is what I called classic Bobbi Brown beauty, the typical face for most of the Bobbi Brown looks, so I knew now what technique I'd use on her. Pink-brown, but I made it my own by emphasizing her facial contours. I love Priscilla's brows. It makes her overall look more expressive and youthful. I didn't have to do much but brush it with Girl Boy brow set to soften them. Her long and thick hair was curled for volumzing waves. I envy how long and thick her hair is! I even asked the brand of her shampoo. Hahaha.
Strong brows go with strong lips so I chose berry for her lip color. All these colors are from my Kryolan lip palette, which I didn't know looked amazing in photographs. Well, that's one lesson learned too!
How would I describe the shoot? Fun and fast! The photographers were a riot and they really made the models feel comfy with posing. I love the headshots they did - they were all very clean with minimal retouching. I like headshots with skin looking like skin.
I'm really glad I got to do shoots like these. Not only did I get to work with three faces, I get to practice more on beauty and bridal makeup, skills I should always tuck by my belt.
Next up... airbrush!
models: Leslie, Tanya, and Priscilla
photographers: Ogie Abastillas and Chi Busque
stylist: Mes Yuson
location: Red Digital Studios

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Plueys Makes Us Ready For The Rain This 2010

Crazy as it may seem, the things that make me look forward to the pitter-patter of rain on the pavement is the fact that I can be fasyon and not worry about heat and it would be the time for me to bring out the rain boots. Okay, before you go crazy on me I just want happy drizzles and showers, not mad downpours with howling winds.

Ever since Plueys came here in the Philippines, I was thrilled at the thought that we no longer have to look like Loch Ness Monsters during the rainy season. Although I'd be wearing jeans, the capiliary action of the water soaks me thigh-down and it can get pretty annoying. Plueys are rain boots so cute that we could take them anywhere. When I received my Plueys and Rainskimmers last year, I kept raving about how they've saved me from being soaking wet and getting puddle accidents. My usual uniform would be shorts and Plueys most of the time.

This year, Plueys gets a new oomph to the family with two new additions. First up is the new design... Sew Cute. (and really, if you take a good look at it, it is indeed, so cute!)
Sew Cute is a collaboration wth Marceline Smith, a designer and illustrator based in Glasgow, Scotland. Check out the vintage buttons pattern these boots have. Unlike the previous years' Plueys, the Sew Cute version is in a matte finish. You could check out Smith's website on the link and you could see how her designs give a happy vibe. This design is no exception. The neutral palette makes this boot easy to match with a wide variety of outfits, even a wedding gown, like the one shown below.
When it does rain on your parade (i.e. your wedding day)... don't fret. Bring in the Plueys and walk (er... stomp?) down the aisle in style, yes? Oh and aside from the chic design... check out the liningExclusive Marceline Smith cotton lining.

For those who are on the more conservative side... Plueys brings on plain wellies. These wellies however, are very fasyon and are unlike those being sold in hardware stores. Melikes the black boots... They look like equestrienne boots, don't you think?

Depending on anyone's preference... you could choose whatever color fits your fancy or what the hell... collect them all! :)

For those who are having a hard time mixing-and-matching these uber cute rain boots, you could check the lookbooks here. Look closely though and you'd see at the credits that I had the pleasure too of doing the makeup for this year's lookbook. The shoot was a whole lot of fun, and fast, considering the number of layouts. Photographer was none other than Mike, who did a totally good job directing the models.

I just am amused on how these Plueys could fit any mood. They really are quite wearable and they make such a statement. It's so funny that whenever I walk on the mall people gaze at the level of my boots. Hahaha. During the shoot, I was wide-eyed at the sight of so many Plueys. So imagine my delight when I got home to not one but two boxes!!!!

When I got to the door, I saw two boxes stacked one on top of the other. I recognized that those were the Plueys boxes and started jumping up and down holding the two boxes together

I love shoesies I love boot-boots. Coincidentally, I also wore my rainskimmers that day, which I have been constantly wearing during work with uber narrow staircases.

Omigod omigod omigod! It's the Marceline Smith ones! Just like Cinderella and the glass slipper, I was happy that they fit. I'm a size 40 with them, since I wear them with socks.

Supergirl much? Remember how fabulous these babies looked with the wedding gown in the picture above? They also look fab with a leopard cropped top (love from Carlotta Manila) and black short shorts. Mickey Mouse jumbo watch optional.

I was contemplating whether to get the black or red plain wellies. Esel was suggesting to me to get the red for a statement color but I need black boots for work as well. I opted for black para naman I have a conservative side (sort of. :P)(Esel and Em, I promise to give you better pictures for your posting. :) I have a few shoots with these boots already in the works. I'm too crazy here. But you girls all know that when I'm happy, I'm crazy.)

Oh no... Black wellies or Sew Cute? Can't decide! (lips: MAC Russian Red). I told ya those black wellies were wearable. I wanna try them with dresses too.

As of the moment I have three pairs and counting. On the leftmost side are my Catstooth Plueys from last year, which I so totally love. You could tell that I've used them quite a lot.

Catstooth has been through many rains, storms(I wore them during Santi last year), photoshoots, lunches out, days out, nights out, and all. My Plueys are pretty comfy. I prefer them over heels any day, if dress codes only weren't an issue. With these hunnies, I can say that I'm happy whenever it rains.

Therefore, I declare a rainy day a happy Pluey day.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Wedding Gigs: Sharing Krissey's Wedding

I spent last Wednesday working at another wedding, here again at the South. I did makeup for my friend Krissey's special day, and it was another dead-tired-but-absolutely-happy moment for me to be her wedding makeup artist.

I met Krissey around three years ago since she was one of my very first models. In a shoot organized by several photographers, she was one of the models in a photoshoot and I still saved the picture I took of her, and I'm sharing it with you guys:
We were newbies then, so as you could see, my makeup technique here is different from now. Krissey has very defined cheekbones and facial structure plus her eyes are so alive and catlike. Krissey's beauty shot taken by my friend Paelo remains up to this day one of my favorite clean shots:

This shot was taken 2 years ago, I think.

Set aside the kleig lights and green lipsticks, Krissey embarks on another chapter in her life, that is her wedding. We had her prenuptial photoshoot the day after she contacted me. Krissey looked absolutely beautiful, even prettier than she was years ago. I guess being in love makes you prettier. We had fun with color and concepts in her prenuptial photoshoot, and her husband-to-be Jannus was game at the thought of having makeup done and posing as well. They both registered well in by Christine Gonzales

Krissey described her theme as gold and copper, and with a nighttime wedding and an off-white gown, I opted for my favorite palette of amber, gold, and browns. I really like a warm palette because I like the healthy glow it gives. So I went for gold and copper on her eyes with a tad of smolder. Krissey has such lovely eyes so it's easy to play up with them. Peach was the color for her lips and cheeks and I wanted a bit of gold highlight for the goddess feel.

Originally, Krissey wanted her hair down and wavy for her wedding hair. However, when we saw the gown, the intricate beading and details Wacks suggested a loose updo that's still feminine instead of school marm tight.

Ze very intricate haircomb and accessories. Krissey has two veils, a shorter one for the face and a long one that trails along her gown, which has double the train. The train and gown was a mixture of pleating, beads, and 3d details that went well together.

Her sister, Kim was the maid of honor. She wanted a high, tight ponytail similar to Venus Raj. While being inspired by the beauty queen, dramatic eyes in a forest green color was the palette I chose for her.
Krissey's mum and dad also had to look fabulous too. :) I love the gown of Krissey's mom. To match, I gave her plum-pink eyes. The dad was just too adorable. Seeing how gorgeous his daughters and wife looked, he also opted to be groomed as well.

For men, I just evened out skin tone and gave warmth to the skin using bronzer. I don't want men to look too made up, just fresh with even-toned skin.

After the wedding, Wacks and I did some touch-ups on the couple's makeup. I amplified the smokiness in Krissey's eyes and tamed out any oiliness or shine spots. The long veil was now out of the way, and her hair was brought down to a low side ponytail. So, here's the beautiful newly-wed couple:
Congratulations to Krissey and Jannus! :)

Bride: Krissey Vellon-Materiales
Groom: Jannus Materiales
makeup: Bambi de la Cruz
hair: Wacks Joaquin
Preps: Bellevue Hotel
Location: Fernbrook Gardens, Alabang