Sunday, 30 March 2014

#THISISBRIT Burberry Brit Rhythm for Her

If you're a Burberry Brit Rhythm woman and you know it, #THISISBRIT 
Burberry Brit Rhythm for Her is a  powdery floral fragrance with a burst of a rather sophisticated lavender, the warmth and vitality of orange blossom at it's heart, and the depth of vetiver which is both sensuous and refreshing, has become a rather unexpected favourite for me. I very rarely venture within the realms of powdery fragrances, which makes this sassy fragrance so special, because it loses the stigma of a powdery fragrance very quickly.
effortless appeal, cheeky confidence and multidimensional style
It is feminine to the core, and at the same time it has a boldness that I would associate with spicier, more obviously sensual fragrances. I like this very much. It certainly is well-named, because it encompasses the spirited freshness and cheeky femininity of the stylish trendsetter that is the British woman. I think somehow we all tune into this psycho-social dynamic of style, beauty and ideology; and what we wear, and how we wear it, speaks a language that is globally understood. And yes, this fragrance taps into that global connection. But we really don't need to think too hard about it...just experience it.
I know this will probably sell extremely well as a Spring/Summer fragrance, but because we tend to have sun (in and out) for most of the year here in South Africa, I think I've just found an ideal everyday fragrance through all the seasons.
I love this look: like the fragrance, it's subtle and strong at the same time
If you like 'happy' fragrances that are a world of sophistication apart from your standard 'happy' fragrances, then do try Burberry Brit Rhythm for women eau de toilette.
Here's what's in it:
Lavender... fresh and bold, and often used in masculine fragrances; Burberry's English lavender comes from beautiful Kent, the "Garden of England", and there's nothing granny-ish about this one. Almost unrecognisable, this unexpected contribution is what immediately brings in a cheekiness to Burberry Rhythm by overturning our usual expectations of a powdery floral. It is also a salute to Burberry's British heritage.
Orange Flower Absolute...provides an invigorating scent that brings light to my senses; included, is the innovation of "Petalia"(a peony molecule) which is probably what makes the eau de toilette perform so well in terms of how long the fragrance lasts on skin. It is impressive! I love the exhilirating sense of awakening that orange blossom scents bring to me, but again this is not your standard fragrance. The floral blend is delicate yet firm, fresh and comforting all at the same time. And it is also unexpectedly invigorating for a powdery floral...like I said: it is certainly not your standard powdery floral fragrance.
Vetiver...Haitian Vetiver (yum) and a blend of musks and vibrant woods solidify the power of this delicate fragrance, making it in so many ways the yin and yang that encapsualtes this gorgeously alluring scent.
#THISISBRIT because there's a little rockstar in all of us
Fashion, beauty and fragrance will always reflect what is transpiring in the very depths of our collective psyche, and Burberry Brit Rhythm for women captures the vivacious and audacious spirit of feminine power. And you are gonna love the bottle! The dichotomy of smooth and studded; just how I see myself right now! ;)

My work in gaschettemag.com

A recent shoot with photographer, Louis Botha, shows up online at gaschettemag.com . We did quite a few cool shots that day, and I hope to be able to post a few more final edits if and when I get them. It just gets so busy that I lose track of getting hold of pics...but do need them to keep my portfolio fresh.


The orange lips was a favourite, and I used a combination of a bright orange creme colour from local brand Siggi's, and just hydrated it with a coating of an orange lip colour by Sensai. I used my Sensai foundation powders over Garnier's BB cream in Medium, with a makeup prep with Sensai's Awakening Essence.
For my gentleman I used my Shiseido liquid foundation for in a slightly lighter shade than his skin; it blended perfectly, and offered coverage over lips as well. I also lightened his brows with alcohol based makeup imported from the States. Hair was styled using L'Oreal Professional products; and a lot of twisting and teasing ...!
We weren't exactly going for a "Hunger Games" feel, but the brief was basic: one word - Hunger... and we ended up with this. You'll noticed that I swayed towards a bleached, or rather blanched, look: eyes are practically naked, but I just could not resist the inclination to pop that orange.

For me, I feel an urge to play with orangey nude lips this autumn...and then move on to a few radiant reds for winter. Does this make sense to you??


Chat with me on twitter @amakeupmistress to share your makeup and beauty thoughts and inspiration.

Friday, 28 March 2014

Ben Nye foundation palette: why I'm just not that into it

I not only got the Ben Nye foundation palette in dark, but also the corrector palette... I was that convinced that I would love it. And ohlardamercy, I tried to love it . Everytime I dipped into that palette I asked the Universe to make me understand it better, to know how to get the best from this palette. So far, not much in the way of an answer.
I had been plotting the purchase of an array of Ben Nye products for a while. I tried them all out on the back of my hand, and had no reservations that I would not be entirely happy. I joyfully handed over my credit card to pay the rather steep bill. After all, this is a brand trusted by makeup artists in the film industry for decades.  And then I used them.
I've only used the corrector palette a handful of times, and have even considered using it as neutral eye shadow cream bases...that could work. It's just hard to escape the untidy way it sits on the skin.  Perhaps it's my application? I'm just not as impressed by these palettes as I ought to be, considering how much I paid for them.
It is far too costly to simply ignore them and pretend they're not in my kit. The best solution is just to put it out there and ask: how can I apply this foundation without making absolutely every pore more visible than it had been without any makeup?? Anyone?
I've tried using primers, moisturizers, water-based moisturizer and primer....and still I'm left with that awful spotty coverage that looks like I've just caked someone's face in some Studio Fix!?! Okay, I may be exaggerating...
But I can notice it.
On camera it passes thanks to great lighting and the photographer's settings, but to the naked eye it makes me feel sad and nervous inside; something's just not right. The coverage on darker skin seems to be so much better...a world apart it seems. Perhaps that is the key. Perhaps I should apply a shade darker to most skin tones? I should also prep skin and leave to hydrate and settle; although one rarely has the time to do all the prep needed. Yes, I'm looking for a quick fix.
I have a feeling that this foundation is only going to work on perfectly poreless (?) skin... Or at least very nearly...
In the meantime, I'm going to have to keep playing with my application, and skin prep, to see what works best.

Chat with me on twitter @amakeupmistress to share your makeup and beauty thoughts and inspiration.

Another surprise #beauty @dischem

Claudia Stevens Eyelid Primer
is available at Dis-Chem
I first tried the Claudia Stevens makeup primer, which delighted first in price (around R59,99) and then in application. There may only be a little bit of product in the tiny tubes, but you don't need too much.
It's pretty much the same with the eye lid primer from the same brand. You only need the slightest hint of a dab. I am so in love with this eye lid primer from Claudia Stevens, that I border on addiction! Because I actually did squeeze out a tad too much, which is only easy to do if you're not expecting to require far less, I discovered an alternate use for said product. After applying to the lids and dabbing it in gently, I was reluctant to just waste the remaining blob on the back of my hand. So I applied it as under-eye concealer, thinking that it will hold the powder in place longer. It worked beautifully. The beauty of this product is that it seems to be far more hydrating than others that I've tried. The problem is that I have only seen it in one shade. It is a shade that can span a large skin colour spectrum, which makes it all the more loveable. However, it won't work for absolutely everyone. As an eyelid primer, I am very happy with it. And although I may try a few others, I am certain this one will be a staple in my kit.




Chat with me on twitter @amakeupmistress to share your makeup and beauty thoughts and inspiration.

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Wiping the slate Beauty So Clean


This tiny 60ml bottle is great for keeping in my set bag, but I'm gonna need the 250ml to keep me well stocked
Beauty So Clean has been mentioned by quite a few makeup artists on the internet, and I was very keen to try these out. I have been looking for a good option to sanitize my makeup, other than the usual Isopropyl Alcohol that seems to be our standard 'go-to' product for killing germs. There is some alcohol in the Beauty So Clean range of cosmetic wipes, cosmetic sanitizer and sanitizing brush cleaner. 
I'm gonna need a bigger pack of these Beauty So Clean wipes, too!
I like knowing that the products I use are clean. It is my responsibility to look after my actor or model's skin when they are on set, and I spend ages cleaning out my tools, product and kit in preparation for each day's shoot. And I can't tell you how happy it makes me to know that I can rely on an easy to use product to help me do this throughout each day on set. Usually I would just spritz everything with alcohol...if you pay close attention to your makeup, you will realise that using 90% alcohol to sanitize your makeup is a very drastic measure, and one that will cost you in the long run: pigments become less intense, and cream based makeup dries out. I know, if you use all your makeup quickly enough, it won't really matter. But what are the chances of that...? I currently have the teensy bottle of Beauty So Clean cosmetic sanitizer, which is great for my set bag, but the bigger 250ml bottle works out to be far more cost-effective. 
The Beauty So Clean wipes are great fro wiping lipsticks and foundations that are cream based,
but you're be prepared to use quite a few.
My only gripe with them is that I could easily go through an entire pack of these Beauty So Clean sanitizing wipes in just one week. Perhaps I'm too much of a germaphobe... Whatever the case, my makeup will be Beauty So Clean... (nothing wrong with a little bit of corn on a blog).

Order your Beauty So Clean products from Jeanine@hairhousewarehouse.co.za if you're in Jozi, or from Tamaris Trading in Cape Town; Tamaris gets the product from Hairhouse Warehouse, so it may be a slightly longer wait if you're in Cape Town, but usually within ten days from your order being placed.


Chat with me on twitter @amakeupmistress to share your makeup and beauty thoughts and inspiration.

Monday, 24 February 2014

Battle of the Brush Cleaners

How do you test a brush cleaner? I suppose as with anything you have to compare one to another and find some kind of average, and then decide what is above and what is below. Perhaps. One thing I learnt as I worked with 4 different brush cleaners, is that maybe, just maybe, you can't actually compare them comprehensively. 
You will certainly find a favourite. But it may just be one favourite for one aspect, and another favourite for a totally different reason. So how do you choose? And do you really have to?
The best way to find your favorites and makeup kit staples is to try everything. That way you have no doubt as to what works best for you. And always bear in mind that what works for one makeup artist may not work for another. I find that I may use similar products for completely different reasons, and it is only with days of testing that those reasons become apparent to me. I've been using Parian Spirit and Ben Nye Brush Cleaner for the past few months. But the way I use them differs greatly: the Parian Spirit is my go-to brush cleaner to get all the product out, but it leaves a film, and brushes take that much longer to dry compared to the ones with alcohol as a key ingredient. My Ben Nye acted as a sanitizer and sped up drying time; it also helped eliminate the funny film left behind by the essential oil-rich Parian Spirit. I used to end up using my Ben Nye brush cleaner as a spot cleaner...a costly exercise. I paid just about under R100 for a 59ml bottle of Ben Nye, and about R140 for 120ml of Parian Spirit.
So I looked for alternatives. And I was surprised to find a very well-known, and much loved by pro makeup artists in the film industry, Beauty So Clean! I was beyond thrilled to know that I can purchase these here without having to wait 6 weeks for it to clear our dreaded Customs :(
Not long after I discovered Beauty So Clean in South Africa, I stumbled upon Bodyography's brush cleaner. And then just by happy co-incidence when I was at the Pro Beauty expo, I found another brand of brush sanitizers that I am keen to try out in conjunction with my brush cleaners. It seems that the market is wide open to us nowadays, and that is very thrilling.
I tested the ones that I have: the Ben Nye I would only use to speed up drying time and eliminate the film left behind by Parian Spirit. Parian Spirit, of course, is the winning cleaner just for the pure aspect of removing product and pigment from the brushes. For Parian Spirit to disinfect your brushes, you will have to allow for a 1 to 5 minute exposure time...it's not gonna happen on set... So for speedy disinfecting on set, I am going to turn to a quick spot cleaning with a product like Beauty So Clean.
I love my sanitizing brush cleaner for quick cleans on set. Although it doesn't clean as effectively in terms of removing colour makeup from my brushes, Beauty So Clean dries in record time, and I know that it has eliminated most surface bacteria.
If it's not time you're concerned about, and just want good, clean brushes; and you have the time to wait for them to dry, then Parian Spirit is going to be your choice. With Parian Spirit your brushes will look clean, be clean, and smell great. But it will take a few hours of drying before you can use your brushes again; and you may have to brush out the slight coating that remains on your brushes...not a big thing, just brush your brushes gently to and fro on a clean towel. A quick spritz of Beauty So Clean and a wipe on some roller towel will help to sanitize your brushes from use to use, until you are able to give them a good Parian Spirit clean. Parian Spirit is pricey, but worth it, which is why I will be sure to have both Parian Spirit for end of day cleaning, and Beauty So Clean for all my spot cleaning during my day on set.

I buy my Parian Spirit and Ben Nye brush cleaners from Masque in Cape Town; and my Beauty So Clean from Tamaris Trading which is a pro salon supplier (maybe just call them to enquire how to make your purchase). If you are in Jozi, why not send a mail to Jeanine@hairhousewarehouse.co.za to place your order.

Chat with me on instagram and twitter @amakeupmistress to share your makeup and beauty thoughts and inspiration.

Thursday, 13 February 2014

Why Beauty So Clean is King of the Hollywood Hill

a 125ml bottle of  well-known and much talked about makeup brush cleaner, Beauty So Clean
When I found out that Beauty So Clean was available in South Africa, I did a little happy dance. I have read so much about this must-have beauty consumable that I knew it had to be a winner. And after all, many a film and television makeup artist in the heart of Hollywood has this in her Zuca!
Distributed by pro beauty supplier, Health Hair and Beauty, and sold at salons that carry the range...not too sure who exactly, because I buy from a local professional beauty supplier called Tamaris Trading. I'll try to track down some retail outlets and do a post on that, because I think if you even have just one makeup bag you should have a brush cleaner and makeup sanitizer, and Beauty So Clean covers it all.
Beauty So Clean is said to clean and sanitize.
Not the best on getting pigment out, but brilliant for spot cleaning and instant sanitizing
 I wasn't very impressed with its cleaning ability, because to get it as clean as my Parian Spirit gets it, I would have to do a few extra cleaning swipes and use extra product. Considering that it is easily half the price of the Parian Spirit, it is acceptable. Where Beauty So Clean comes up tops is that it leaves no residue at all, and its ingredients combat bacteria far better. It contains alcohol; and before all these fantastic new and specific cleaning agents came along, most makeup artists turned to plain old Isopropyl Alcohol to keep those germs at bay. The only difference now is that these products are so much gentler on our brushes. And that is worth the investment.
It's just a matter of an extra few wipes to get brushes clean with Beauty So Clean
If you've worked with Parian Spirit you know about that weird film that coats your brushes after a cleaning. Beauty So Clean brush cleaner does not do that, but it also does not clean as fast, nor as effectively. What you can count on though, is that Beauty So Clean will sanitize your brushes and they will dry in record time! Which is why I'm buying more of this product. This is a fantastic product for on set spot cleaning. If I clean my brushes with Parian Spirit it takes them a few hours to dry. With Beauty So Clean, my brushes dry within minutes. And plus the fact that Beauty So Clean is anti-bacterial, makes it a pro makeup winner in my kit.
What's more...my brushes love Beauty So Clean, and I've noticed less shedding occurs 
There is a yummy chocolate smelling version of Beauty So Clean, which I can't wait to try, but I'm not sure if it's in South Africa yet...??
So, here's how it's going to work for me: I'll be sticking with Parian Spirit for my wrap-time brush cleaning sessions, but on set, and indeed for my most frequent spot cleaning, Beauty So Clean has pride of place in my set bag.


Chat with me on Instagram and Twitter @amakeupmistress to share your makeup and beauty thoughts and inspiration.
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