My Beauty Philosophy: Part 1

Wedding makeup in Newport

“Do you ever look at a woman walking down the street and see things about her makeup you want to fix?” I have been asked variations of this question for as long as I have been doing makeup. And the answer is “no.”  Every makeup artist has their own views on makeup and beauty, and I’d like to tell you mine. This is going to be a two part blog post. Part 1 is about my beauty philosophy in regards to others, and Part 2 will be about my personal beauty philosophy.

This is how I see it.

Focus on the good. At the core of my beauty philosophy is my opinion (which I actually consider to be more of a fact) that everyone has something beautiful about their face. When I look at someone, I don’t zone in on a blemish, thin lips or uneven eyebrows. I see gorgeous bone structure, glowing skin, pretty green eyes, crazy thick eyelashes, etc. What stands out to me is what is naturally beautiful about their face. And what I like about makeup is that it can enhance any of those features. When a client is in my chair, I apply their makeup in a way that brings out that feature or features. I’m not huge on corrective makeup. You won’t find me contouring the hell out of people’s faces or packing on foundation to get a “flawless” finish. (I have used the word “flawless” before but I don’t like it, hence the passive aggressive quotes). I cover what I think needs to be covered to make the person feel comfortable (they often start by saying “I have such dark circles!” or “I hate that I woke up with this zit today,” so I often know what they dislike from the get-go). I look at covering or correcting areas that bother a client as the technical part of my job and bringing out the beauty as the artistic part.

Do you. You don’t want to wear makeup? That’s cool! I am a big believer in doing what works for you. I have lots of clients who are nurses or teachers (props to you ladies, by the way–your jobs are so important) and they have told me it doesn’t make sense for them to put on a full face of makeup for their jobs. And there are some people who are just not into makeup. I think that’s great! Whatever makes sense for your lifestyle and whatever you feel comfortable doing is what you should be doing. I’m not the type of makeup artist who thinks everyone should wear makeup. I say wear as much or little as you want, and rock it with confidence. Yes, I write how-to blog posts and give makeup tips, but those are for people who want to learn or experiment. I don’t think anyone has to wear makeup or has to do it my way, or Bobbi Brown’s way, or some YouTube artist’s way.

Bringing out inner beauty. Sounds super cheesy, right? But let me explain what I mean. Overall, I feel good. I am generally pretty optimistic and consider myself to be a happy person. I try to be a great friend and daughter/sister/niece/cousin. I’m no saint, but I would like to think I’m at least kind of a good person 🙂 I’m feel lucky to have so many awesome people in my life and I feel grateful that I have been able to create a lifestyle that I love. All positive things, right? But on the days when I wake up with dull looking skin or darker-than-usual-undereye circles, I feel like my exterior does not match how I feel. So my current favorite foundation and some concealer, and maybe a bright lip color or pretty cream blush perks me up so when I look in the mirror, I think “Now this all makes sense.” And that is what I try to do for my clients. I meet so many wonderful people who have inner beauty in spades (along with some naturally beautiful features, of course) so I think it’s also part of my job to help show that inner beauty on the outside.

Self expression, man. Imagine if we all had to walk around with the same hairstyle, same outfit and no makeup. Of course there would be other ways of expressing ourselves, like with, I don’t know, interpretive dance and poetry. But isn’t it nice that that scenario is not real and we have makeup we can play with? (And you can dance and write poems while wearing makeup!) Maybe you wear a bright pink lipstick on the first nice day of spring, because you’re excited for warm weather and the anticipation of your favorite time of year. Or you’re feeling badass, so you line your eyes with kohl liner and dare someone to mess with you. Or you’ve been into watching old movies, so you take some inspiration from Audrey Hepburn or Sophia Loren and do a retro makeup look. All of those things allow you to express yourself in different ways via the magic of makeup.

So that’s where I stand. I don’t judge anyone for the makeup they wear or don’t wear. My job (and my passion) is to give people a little confidence boost by bringing out their natural and inner beauty and to encourage self expression. Makeup may literally be on the surface, but it’s not a superficial thing.

Have a beautiful day 🙂

 

Photo Credit: Rebecca Arthurs Photography, http://www.rebecca-arthurs.com. Makeup by Allison Barbera.

Product Review: Revlon ColorBurst Balm Stain Review

You know that accessory you have that makes every outfit instantly look better? (Mine is a Biggie Smalls necklace.) The makeup version of that is a bright or intense lip color. I personally go for bright over intense, because with my light skin and black hair (with blue at the ends) anything vampy or dark makes me look like Elvira. I love the idea of a vampy look and am a huge fan of an oxblood or black cherry lip on a blonde or redhead, but on me, bright usually works better.

To get my bright lip fix, I used to automatically go for orange reds, like MAC Lady Danger. But a while back, my cousin, Saint Maria Goretti, gave me a Revlon ColorBurst Balm Stain in Rendezvous, a pretty coral (more on the orange than pink side of coral). It instantly turned me into a coral lip girl. Rendezvous has become a staple in my personal makeup bag. I wear it at least once a week. I find myself reaching for it when I either a) Don’t have much time but want to look like I put effort into my look or b) Am feeling blah and need a pick me up.

Circumstance A happens a lot when I’m crazy busy working on a shoot or during wedding season. During those days or months, I don’t have much time to put on makeup. But Rendezvous, in combination with my My Super Quick Everyday Look, makes me look pulled together even when I’m so busy I don’t know what day, month or year it is (I’m not exaggerating–I once thought it was August in November). In case you missed it, here’s how I do my Super Quick look: https://allisonbarberamakeup.wordpress.com/2015/04/09/my-super-quick-everyday-look/

Circumstance B happens for most of the winter. When it’s mid-February and there is no end in sight to the short days, daily snowstorms and bitter cold, I have to fake myself into thinking summer is near or I risk losing my shit completely. When I’m on the verge of a seasonal breakdown, I often bring out the Jergens Natural Glow, a turquoise eyeliner or now, my Rendezvous Balm Stain. I do this in hopes that my summer makeup fools my brain into thinking it’s warm out, even if only for two seconds.

The ColorBurst Balm Stain is a gel formulation. Rendezvous has a sheen to it and feels pretty moisturizing. You can easily build up the coverage, and the color payoff is good. It’s reasonably long-lasting, which surprised me as even decently longwear products can be tough to find at the drugstore level.  This is one of those big lip crayons, like a Clinique Chubby Stick, so you’re not going to get a precise line with it. (I like more of a blurry line on my own lips, because I think it makes them look bigger, so I like this aspect.) When it starts to wear down, you just twist the top to bring more product up.

I found this to be an easy, wearable and inexpensive (retails between $6.80-$8.99) lip product. This particular shade may not be for everyone, but they have several colors in the line. Even if you are not usually into a pop of color on your lips, why not give it a try? It’s spring time–have some fun! 😉 I think it really is worth experimenting with a brighter lip color. The right color can brighten up your face and bring out your eye color. And if you buy it at CVS, you can return it as long as you have the receipt. So you have nothing to lose! At least consider it for me, would you?

Have a beautiful day 🙂