Saturday, 23 January 2016

Building my Kit #3: Tools & Disposables

So i thought I would continue with this series I had going back when I was Blog of Shadows. It was my kit series, as I found myself building up my kit thanks to recommendations online and thought it would be nice to share what I had learnt along the way too!

While brushes may seem like the only tool we need as make up artists, I found out that the other little bits and bobs are just as important, if not more so! 

1 - Obviously we wouldn't be anywhere without cotton pads. So useful for spot cleaning brushes, taking off eye make up and general cleaning. I get mine from Primark for 50p. Not pictured, I also keep a pack of tissues in my kit, for similar reasons mentioned above. 

2 - Handy small pack of cotton buds. When building a freelance kit, the most important lesson is SPACE. Although these only fit about 20 in, I top up as and when. 

3 - Lip wands. I picked these up from Love Make Up for about £3. Great for lipgloss application without sacrificing the hygiene of the product. Its so important to be hygienic and professional. 

4 - I picked these up from Marks and Spencers, they are self make up removing cotton buds, great for any little mistakes (especially eyeliner and lips). When you get one out, you crack it at the tip and it releases make up remover. Also super handy for mascara removal! They were kinda pricey, but I find I don't have to top them up too much. 

5 - Disposable mascara wands. So important for hygienic use of mascara. I have a couple of different types. These are all MAC, which you can buy from any MAC store. They are pretty generic, but really handy to fit in most mascara bottles. And great for eyebrow grooming!

6 - Kevyn Aucoin eyelash curlers. I am a big big fan of lash curling on myself, its such an important must do part of my routine and I know how much of a difference it makes to my crazy straight lashes, so I wanted to invest in a good pair of curlers for my kit. I myself have always used Shu Uemura, but I read excellent reviews on the Kevyn ones in pro make up artists kits, so invested. I've actually yet to use them as most of my clients go for falsies, but at £16 a pop I hope they do me justice! I got mine from Cult Beauty.

7 - Baby MAC mascaras. These are little samples from when my mum bought something from my store, they threw in a handful of these. My mum doesn't really wear make up so gave them to me and I thought they would be fab in my kit. I give these as little wedding favours to brides if they opt for just mascara, as its great size to fit in my handbag. If you aren't a fan of samples, you know those little perfume ones or moisturiser that you get in magazines, throw them in your kit. They make great little favours. 

8 - MAC pots. I always keep these handy little pots in my kit for emergencies. You know the type... spillages in your bag or just general decanting. I have also found them particularly handy if you have a client who needs something decanted for their travels. If you don't feel like splurging, most make up counters will give you sample pots if you ask super kindly! If not, these are available here. 

9 - Spatula and palette. Super super necessary, if you are building up your kit make these the first things you buy! You need to show your client you are hygienic, so always decant products with the spatula onto a clean palette. It will show your professionalism and keep your products super sanitised. My spatula is from Love Make Up and my palette is MAC. 

10 - These are handy little tweezers from Anastasia Beverly Hills. I love how sharp and neatly these cut lashes if you need to trim them for a client. If you are just starting out, you don't need to go for something so expensive, Boots and Superdrug do some very basic nail scissors that will do the job. The ABH ones are fab though if you want something robust and  will last you a long time!

11 - On the subject of lashes, always keep your kit topped up with lash glue. I always always use the DUO one, you just can't beat it. 

12 - Cosmetic Wedges - I got these from Primark for 50p. I am not a fan of using wedges to apply foundation, but I do find them super handy when doing special FX work or blending out edges. I also have some MAC powder puffs in here as well. Very handy for applying powder for an airbrushed finish. 

13 - An odd one, but I've found nail polish remover is so so essential. I've worked on brides who suddenly gasp at the state of their bridesmaids nails and you can really save the day if you have one of these little guys. Super quick and easy. I've also found it can save YOUR day if you turn up to a client with chipped nails (guilty!). The last thing you want is chipped nails in a professional photo, so really really handy.

14 - Other random bits which will not go unloved, hair grips and nail files. Trust me. Also not pictured but I also have straws. The amount of models/brides who want to drink when their lips have been done. It just saves a lot of aggravation. 

15 - MAC Powder Puff, for times where you're topping up eyes but don't want to disturb the rest of the face. Rest this on your pinky finger and it won't ruin any of the hard work. 

16 - Tweezers. Although I'm not a fan of applying clients lashes with tweezers (too dangerous!) I do have a couple in my kit just in case. You never know! I have a tiny Benefit one, which is handy just for its size and my main one I use is my Anastasia Beverly Hills one from Cult Beauty. 

And that is most of the random bits and bobs I have in my kit. All so essential though, my kit would not function without these random items! 

If you would like to see the other make up artist kit posts I have done you can see them here
1 // 2

Kayleigh x

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Monday, 18 January 2016

Weekly Work Looks (#10)

Do you remember a century ago, when I did a thing called weekly work look? If not, the clue is in the name I guess! Every week I would post a make up look I had worn to work (which was usually very neutral as I didn't have a job back then which promoted wearing make up!). I thought I'd bring it back and just showcase some of the looks I have worn to work this week! I've had a bit of a purple love affair this week (if you couldn't tell!) so excuse the obvious running theme! 

Cheeky little smokey look on Wednesday! For this I used Sketch // Blacktrack liner // Plum Dressing // Cranberry // Marvel // Stars and Rockets eyeshadows in the crease with Phloof on the lid (all MAC) I buffed Marvel and Stars and Rockets under the lid too and really blew them out. Looking back this was probably my favourite look of the week.  

This was my Friday look. I get to do the looks every Friday at work and again, with my love affair with purple, I went for a soft blown out burgundy eye. I used Plum Dressing // Cranberry and Sketch in the crease with again Phloof and Pink Opal on the lid. I think I dabbled with Violet Pigment too (again all MAC). I didn't want this one to be as precise and edgy as the others, I wanted it to be soft and almost un-precise to follow one of our trends. 

This was Mondays look! I used the Urban Decay Vice 4 for this look, seeing as it was my day off. I got the Vice 4 for christmas and haven't had much of a chance to play but it has a nice combination of purples which of course attracted me! it also has a bright pink which I used in the crease to blend out with and love. 

So thats a few of the looks from this week. if you are interested in seeing some of my other weekly work looks, here's the links. Its quite incredible seeing how far I've come from my first one. 

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8 // 9

Kayleigh x

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Monday, 11 January 2016


Obviously in my blogging hiatus I did do the fair amount of make up looks which never made it to the blog but I did post occasionally to Instagram! While I catch up and gather my bearings, I thought I would post some looks I did last year on Instagram. At the moment, I'm just trying to get all the kinks out of my blog, get a new email address, create posts, edit them and figure out how to use a MacBook (I just transferred from a windows computer and the learning curve is steep!) but I thought today I would share some looks I did do in 2015, that never made it to the blog. 

A more recent look of mine, this was a brown smokey for work with a twist. I decided to do a double liner to jazz things up. I used the new Too Faced Chocolate Bar (semi sweet) palette and its just love. So pigmented and easy to use. MAC Backtrack for liner as always with their Photogravure technakohl pencil. I love the technakohls for their staying power, so if you want a pencil that actually lasts, I definitely recommend. Great in the waterline too, but not as creamy so you really do have to pack them on. 

This look was for a Viva Glam Friday at work. I have come to love greens and the way they look on brown eyes. They make them look almost reddy brown, which I love. This was MAC Rule eyeshadow in the crease with Plumage on the outer and inner corners. MAC released some beautiful dazzle shadows in the year, but they were limited edition much to my dismay. I patted one of those in the middle and am so sad they aren't available anymore.

Loved this look. If you are a fan of Depeche Girl on Instagram this was inspired by her. I just wish I could have 1% of her talent and skilfulness with eyeliner. Sugar pill Absinthe was the green with MAC Blacktrack (obvs). I used Lime Crime Styletto on the lips. Perhaps most importantly was the MAC 210 brush and Zoeva 312 brushes. Could not live without them. I love doing graphic looks like this. 

This was a work look for our Student night back in October. Without liner, it made my eyeballs look quite small, but I love looks like this using colour. The blue/green was MAC Teal Pigment blended out with MAC Saddle, a brilliant bendable transition colour if you are looking for one. 

As an artist one thing I have been trying to practise is clean cut edges and winged out blown out looks. This was a practise attempt on myself in the Autumn. I used MAC Feline eye pencil as a base, just smudged all the way up to the crease with brown script eyeshadow to blend out and handwritten on the lid. Brown Script is beautiful but on fairer skins like myself it can come across as quite orange toned, so I only really use it when i'm doing dark looks like this. To clean up I simply used a wipe, but now I have started using concealer and taking it down a little bit further on my lower lash line. Practise makes perfect. 

This was an autumnal look I did using the Sleek Vintage Romance palette. I often get so swept up using MAC products that I forget about all my other palettes, especially the sleek ones where I have an abundance. I love these sorts of tones, especially in the Autumn. 

Probably one of my favourites last year, I just loved this look however much to my dismay I didn't write what I used on Instagram and cannot fathom what it could have been! I have a feeling it was the Urban Decay Smokey Palette with some MAC shadows to transition.

Another simple yet effective look I did for work. Some days you wake up and quite simply can't be bothered to blend. However there is enormous pressure to have make up on point and I found doing something like this: easy definition in the crease, liner (blacktrack) and then packing on a colour to the lower lash line, is so so easy and looks really pretty. I used MAC Designer Purple on the lower lash line (a beautifully creamy pencil, super pigmented and lasts all day) and painted my bottom lashes with MAC Violet pigment

So there is some of the looks I did in 2015. I'm so excited and inspired for 2016!

Kayleigh x

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Tuesday, 5 January 2016

Hello 2016

So things have kinda changed around here huh? 

Welcome to my new and hopefully improved internet space! Some of you might be quite surprised to see the change, however I had felt for some time it needed to happen. I had outgrown my old blog, my old name and my old style and it had felt stale for quite some time. I have changed and I wanted my blog to change with me and reflect who I am now. I wanted it to be more professional, more of a place where I can practise artistry, but still remain true to me, a place where I can still learn, practise and share. 
I toyed with getting a proper professional website, but I think one of the most important things about being an artist is learning, and my blog gives me the freedom to do that. The freedom to put an imperfect look up and say "hey my brows aren't so great here" or "eyeliner needs work" and not be judged. I started on Blog of Shadows, it is the very reason I am able to have the job I have and I'll forever be grateful for my little piece of internet. But 5 years have passed and a lot can happen in 5 years! I have grown, I am in a completely different place, a completely different person and I want my blog to reflect that.
Blog of Shadows, you will be missed but right now, I am so happy with where my little internet space is at! Its reinspired me and I'm so hoping 2016 will be the year I can bounce back into the blogging world!

So what can you expect from me this year? Obviously from the title, I am going back to my roots and focusing on make up looks. I dabbled in other areas, fashion and disney. But it made me feel lost and honestly I began to feel my blog became a bit hectic, like it didn't fit anywhere and that I was posting for the sake of it! I may still do the odd post, but for now, its going to be mainly good old fashioned make up!

And I do hope you like my new and hopefully improved internet space and are as excited as I am for 2016! 2015 will be hard to top for me, I began the job of my dreams, made some amazing lifelong friends and met the person I consider my soulmate. I moved into my own place, travelled, grew more than I ever thought I could and that will be hard to top! But I have good feelings for 2016!
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