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Business of Beauty

Lan Nguyen Grealis

By | Education, Lan Nguyen Grealis, Uncatagorized | No Comments

PicMonkey CollageHello fellow beauty lovers!

I recently assisted the amazing Lan Nguyen-Grealis, she is one of the busiest, most respected makeup artists in the world with many awards and accolades under her belt. Lan has a very broad international C.V to date with her work in publications such as Vogue, Marie Claire, Elle and Cosmopolitan, to name but a few. She is self taught with an art background which is very apparent in how she is capable of such beautiful and fashion forward makeup that she creates. The intricate and delicate mix that she blends with beauty and high fashion was one of the reasons that I wanted to do this masterclass. We as makeup artists are inundated with requests to produce a beautiful makeup but when prompted to mix it with an artistic ‘out there’ feel it can be very difficult to strike the right balance, which Lan seems to do so effortlessly. When working on a model it is reminiscent of an artist working on a canvas using building blocks of colour and various different products in order to create depth and texture. She has an innate ability and understanding of the human anatomy which allows her to highlight, contour, correct asymmetric features and disguise what we deem to be imperfections resulting in a small piece of art. Lan demands respect for her art through this ability.

When I heard that Lan was coming to Dublin to do one of her Masterclasses I jumped at the opportunity to assist her. Having attended two of her masterclasses in London, I knew this was a great course to do so recommended my assistant Orlaith do the course. Here she describes her experience:

Lan Nguyen Makeup Masterclass Ireland

I, as a makeup artist, am always looking for inspiration and ways to push the boat out so to speak and this masterclass did not fail to disappoint.

The first call of action was a glimpse into the secret kit of Lan Nguyen Grealis 🙂 What I personally liked so much about this was the simplicity of it. By this I mean that she had a certain amount of interchangeable colours and products, allowing any one product to work for any number of uses. I love this methodology.

Initially Lan demonstrated a ‘simple’ dewy high fashion look. This can be one of the most difficult looks to achieve as not only requires skill but a vast amount of restraint! With an intimate group of seven people she talked us through each step allowing for questions and giving thorough and comprehensive answers.

Following this she did a demonstration on darker skin, explaining the skin tones and suitable colours to use. I found this hugely beneficial as I have up to this point mainly dealt with lighter skin.

Smokey eye, statement lip.

Finally Lan delved into the more artistic side of the masterclass experimenting with highlighting, contouring with colours, concentrating on a feature lip with different textures and colour, blocking out eyebrows and how to use facelace. This was probably my favourite part of the class as not only was I inspired but gained a little confidence in that aspect of makeup with the tricks and tips we were given.

Then….we were let loose on one another. As we highlighted and lined Lan passed through the class giving advice and discussing our technique. This was invaluable and even though I made one or two (to say the least :)) mistakes I managed to create something that not only was I proud of but allowing me to continue learning even after Lan has stopped demonstrating.”

Emma Lan Masterclass

This is Orlaith’s recreation of the look on me. I am not a very good model 🙂 Lan is coming back to Dublin this year for another workshop, so if you are interested in partaking in the course get in touch! I will be helping her organise it again and am putting together a list of people. Last time the workshop sold out, so don’t delay in putting your name down so you are not disappointed.

Hope to see you then. Lots of love,


Housekeeping – Going to get this blog organised!

By | Blogging Tips, Uncatagorized | No Comments
organise your blog image

Photo courtesy of pmi-ireland.org

Hello fellow makeup fanatics!

So one of my New Years resolutions is to be more organised! The first thing that I am going to do is start to look after my blog better, post more often and just be more professional about the whole thing. It is a labour of love, but it is something that I enjoy thoroughly and also helps me put my thoughts in order.

So with this in mind, I have just organised my blog Calender, using the Editorial Calender Plugin, which you can download. I highly recommend it. I have decided that I am going to attempt to blog every day this month!! Yikes. It is going to be alot of hard work, but seeing as this is a quieter time of year for me, there is no excuse.  So from now on this is what the blog will run like:

Monday: Beauty News – Latest products, launches, etc
Tuesday: Beauty Lowdown – My tricks and tips
Wednesday: Bridal – All things bridal, including real brides, wedding tips and inspiration
Thursday: Reviews – Makeup books, makeup counters, tools etc
Friday: Makeup Inspiration – Inspirational images from makeup artists around the world
Saturday: Product Posts – Product reviews, my loves and hates
Sunday: My Work – I share some of what I get up to in my professional life as a make-up artist

If there is anything that you aren’t interested or would prefer that I feature let me know! The first of these posts starts tomorrow 🙂

Hope you enjoy!!

Lots of love,


What is in my Kit: Eyes Part 2

By | Armani, Becca, Body Shop, Chanel, Clarins, Duo, Estee Lauder, Gosh, illamasqua, L'oreal Professionnel, Lancome, Make-up Forever, Professional Kit, Rimmel, Salon System, Uncatagorized, Zuca | 7 Comments

Professional Make-up Kit Mascaras, Eyeliners and other products for eyes

So a couple of years ago I had started to do a “What’s in my Kit” series, but got distracted by something sparkly and never finished it. Needless to say my kit has grown substantially since then, so I guess I should probably start again. So I was thinking I would finish off where I left off and then do a current post about the ones that I had already done. Not sure if that makes any sense!

Anyway, here is goes. This is one of my make-up bags dedicated to EYES! There are three in total. I currently use a Zuca Bag and have done so for years. I love the way that it is so easy to roll around. Mine is extremely heavy though because I have so many products, so I have decanted alot of products to try and reduce the weight. More on that later….

Lancome Hypnose Mascara Waterproof Black
Lancome Hypnose Dolls Eyes Black
L’Oreal Power Volume Collagen Waterproof Black
Rimmel Day2Night Waterproof Black Mascara
Rimmel Scandaleyes Waterproof Mascara Black
Georgio Armani Eyes to Kill Black
The Body Shop Define & Lengthen Mascara Black
YSL Volume Effect Waterproof Blue
Clarins Mascara Intense Plum
Becca The Ultimate Mascara Black
DUO Glue Clear
Duo Glue Black
Salon System Individual Eyelash Glue
Make-up Forever Disposable Mascara Wands

Gosh Eyebrow Palette
MAC Eyebrow Pencil – Fling
MAC Eyebrow Pencil – Lingering
MAC Eyebrow Pencil – Brunette
MAC Eyebrow Pencil – Spiked

MAC Blacktrack Gel Liner
MAC Brown Gel Liner
MAC NC15 Concealer Pencil
Rimmel Sable Brown Pencil
Estee Lauder Softsmudge Black
Becca Cabrera Double Pencil
Clarins 3 Dot Liner Black
Estee Lauder Newport Blue
Rimmel Stormy Grey
Loreal Kohl Blue Denim
Make-up Forever Double Cream Liner
Urban Decay Lucky
Urban Decay Flipside
Urban Decay Electric
Chanel Denim
MAC Teddy
MAC Fascinating
MAC Smoulder
Rimmel Glam Eyes Liquid Liner Black
MAC Turquoise Liquid Liner

MAC Paint Pot
MAC Groundwork
MAC Shimmer
Make-up Forever Shimmer
Make-up Forever 12 Flash Colours

2 Nail Scissors
Standard Scissors
Sephora Eyelash Applicator
Pennys Eyelash Curler
Sephora Mini Eyelash Curler
Tini Eyelash Curler
Eyebrow Razer
Metal Palette
x2 Sharperners
Mini Magnifying Glass

Illamasqua Eyeliner Fluid
Colour Wheel

I know I have alot of mascaras right? I am kinda on the search for the holy grail of mascaras and have been trying nearly every single one on the market. I still feel like there could be a better one out there. Any suggestions do let me know.

So what do you have in your kit? Is it similar? I would love to hear from you.

Lots of Love,

My Professional Makeup Kit – Part 3

By | Barry M, Bobbi Brown, Body Shop, Dior, Estee Lauder, Lagona, Nars, Professional Kit, Smashbox, Uncatagorized | 3 Comments

Various Eyeshadows - MAC, Estee Lauder, Bobbi Brown, Dior Pigments MAC Cosmetics

My Professional Make-up Kit – Eyes No.1

Nars – Night Breed
MAC Glitter – Crystalled Lime
MAC Glitter – Reflects Pearl x2
MAC Glitter – Reflects Bronze
Unknown Glitter – Silver
Unknown Glitter – Various in Stack
MAC Pigment – Neo Orange
MAC Pigment – Fuchsia
MAC Pigment – Golden Lemon
MAC Pigment – Gold
MAC Pigment – Cheers My Dear!
MAC Pigment – Softwash Grey
MAC Pigment – Gift O’ Glamour
MAC Pigment – Silver Fog
MAC Pigment – Mauvement
MAC Pigment – Gold Mode
MAC Pigment – Most Darling
MAC Pigment – Gilded Green
MAC Pearlized Pigment Clusters – Impassioned
Body Shop Shimmer Cubes Palette – No. 6
Barry M Dazzle Dust – Green
Barry M Dazzle Dust – White
Barry M Dazzle Dust – Blue
Naked Pigment – Sierra Nevada 01
Naked Pigment – Sierra Nevada 02
Naked Pigment – Sierra Nevada 03
Naked Pigment – Sierra Nevada 04
Naked Pigment – Sierra Nevada 05
Naked Pigment – Sierra Nevada 06
Bobbi Brown – Duo Eyeshadow Bone & Mahogany

Eyeshadow Palette No. 1:
MAC – Free to Be
MAC – Passionate
MAC – Vibrant Grape
MAC – Swiss Chocolate
MAC – Shadowy Lady
MAC – Pink Venus
MAC – Cranberry
MAC – Plum Dressing
MAC – Texture
MAC – Satin Taupe
MAC – Twinks
MAC – Mulch
MAC – Trax
Lancome Lilac
Urban Decay – Midnight Cowboy

Eyeshadow Palette No. 2:
MAC -White
MAC -Brule
MAC -Orb
MAC -Kid
MAC -All that Glitters
MAC -Forgery
Lancome – Bain D’or
MAC – Shroom
Lancome – Moonlit
MAC – Cork
MAC – Brun
MAC – Wedge
MAC – Copperplate
MAC – Tete e Tint
MAC – Mulch

Eyeshadow Palette No. 3:
MAC -Plumage
MAC -Club
MAC -Sumptuous Olive
MAC -Dazzlelight
MAC -Blue Calm
MAC -Steamy
MAC – Bio Green
MAC – Bright Sunshine
Lancome – Creme
Urban Decay – Goddess
MAC – Deep Truth
MAC – Humid
MAC – Rule
MAC – Carbon
MAC – Mulch

Eyeshadow Palette No. 4:
Estée Lauder -Vanilla
Estée Lauder -Ginger Drop
Estée Lauder – Sand Box
Estée Lauder – Amethyst
Estée Lauder – Bronze Cube
Estée Lauder – Camouflage
Estée Lauder – Cinnamon
Estée Lauder – Honey Drop
Estée Lauder – Mocha Cup
Estée Lauder – Pale Moon
Estée Lauder – Mink
Estée Lauder – Ivory Box
Estée Lauder – Berry
Estée Lauder – Rose
Estée Lauder – Sugar Cube

Eyeshadow Palette No. 5:
Logona Blusher – Apricot
Logona Blusher – Peach
Logona Blusher – Mauve
Estée Lauder – Honey Drop
Estée Lauder – Amethyst
Estée Lauder – Grey
Bobby Brown – Bone
Bobby Brown – Blonde
Bobby Brown – Taupe
Bobby Brown – Mahogany
Dior 5 Coleurs Palette – Black, Grey, White, Lilac, Purples
Dior 5 Coleurs – Peach, Green, Blue, Grey, Brown

My Professional Makeup Kit – Part 2

By | Professional Kit, Uncatagorized | 3 Comments

Makeup Kit Contents 2 Top View

Makeup Kit Contents 2 Front View

Makeup Kit Contents in Zuca Pouch 2 Top View

Makeup Kit Contents in Zuca Pouch 2 Front View
MAC Blot Powder Medium/Dark x 2
Make-Up Forever Mist and Fix Non Alcohol
Stop Sweat

Loreal Studio Secrets Primer
Benefit Dr. Feel Good Primer
Make-Up Forever Micro Perfecting HD Primer
Make-Up Forever Micro Perfecting HD Primer – Green
Make-Up Forever Micro Perfecting HD Primer – Pink
Make-Up Forever Micro Perfecting HD Primer – Yellow

Revlon Highlighter Pink
MAC Strobe Cream
MAC Shimmer Highlighter Chez Lame
MAC Shimmer Highlighter Rose Ole

Make-Up Forever Professional Lift Concealer No.1
Make-Up Forever Professional Lift Concealer No.3
MAC Moisture Select Concealer NW20
MAC Moisture Select Concealer NW30

Blush Palette with 10 Colours from Jordane Cosmetics
Coastal Scents Blush & Contour Palette x10
MAC Blush & Contour Pallette x5 Emphasise, Taupe, Pink Swoon, Fleur Power, Salsa Rose

Jordan Concealer Pallette x6
Dermacover Camouflage Mini Palette – Fair
Rimmel Clear Complexion Concealer Ivory 001
Rimmel Concealer Ivory 001
Rimmel Concealer Natural Beige 004
Laura Mercier Undercover Pot 3
Bobby Brown Cream Concealer Ivory
Georgio Armani Skin Retouch No.3
Jordane Correcter Stick – Peach
Jordane Correcter Stick – Mint
Jordane Correcter Stick – Contour
Jordane Correcter Stick – Lilac
Jordane Correcter Stick – Melon

My Professional Makeup Kit – Part 1

By | Ben Nye, Chanel, Estee Lauder, L'oreal Professionnel, Lancome, MAC Cosmetics, Make-up Forever, Professional Kit | 2 Comments
I have been threatening to do a post of what is in my kit for ages, but there is so much that it takes forever to go through. I often clean my kit as make-up by its very nature is very messy. The last time I was giving it a spring clean I decided to do an invintory and take some pictures, so here they are. This is the first in the series.
My Basic Foundations:
Foundations Top View
Foundations Front View
Foundations in Zuca Pouch Bag
Foundations in Zuca Pouch Bag Front
Make-Up Forever Liquid Lift Foundation No.1
Make-Up Forever Liquid Lift Foundation No.2
Make-Up Forever Liquid Lift Foundation No.3
Make-Up Forever Liquid Lift Foundation No.4
Make-Up Forever Mat Velvet No.35
Make-Up Forever Mat Velvet No.60
Make-Up Forever HD Foundation No.115
Make-Up Forever HD Foundation No.117
Make-Up Forever HD Foundation No.120
Make-Up Forever HD Foundation No.125
Make-Up Forever HD Foundation No.140
Make-Up Forever HD Foundation No.155
MAC Face and Body Foundation C3
MAC Face and Body Foundation N1
MAC Studio Sculpt Foundation NW20
MAC Studio Sculpt Foundation NW40
MAC Studio Sculpt Foundation NC25
MAC Full Coverage NC35
MAC Full Coverage NW35
MAC Pro Longwear NW20
Chanel Pro Lumiere Cameo No.20
Chanel Teint Innocence Beige No.40
Chanel Teint Innocence Shell No.30
Lancome Color Ideal No.1
Ben Nye Cream Foundation L-1 Creamy Peach
Ben Nye Cream Foundation P-4 Ultra Fair
Ben Nye Cream Foundation B-5 Warm Sand
Estee Lauder Doublewear 1W1 Bone No. 17
Loreal Infallible Porcelain No.15g

Still to come in future posts are:

Face 3: Airbrush Foundations
Eyes 1: Eyeshadows. Pigments, Glitters
Eyes 2: Mascaras, Eyeliners, Cream Eyeshadows, Eye Primers
Eyes 3: False Eyelashes and Glues
Skincare: Moisturisers, Toners, Cleansers
Nails: All things nails
Lips: Lipsticks, lipglosses and Lip Pencils
Hair: All things hair
SFX: All things SFX