I don’t know what it is about the change in seasons that makes me get all introspective but, I once again find myself bursting with ideas and anticipation now that Spring has fully arrived and Summer is practically here! I feel like this…

You know when you are right on the edge of change? Or a big decision? Edges can be scary and edges can be exciting…right now I’m experiencing the exciting aspect of the edge. New season, new opportunities, new chances to be different, to be better. I will not be afraid, I will simply toss my perfectly curled hair and jump right in!

I’m eager for more sunshine, wedding season filled with makeup and hair on lovely brides, vacation, changes in my own life, and exciting growth for Polish and Pout…

Isn’t this model lovely? Her name is Jess (too!)…You will definitely be seeing more of this amazing shoot I did with JennaRae and Ashley over the next month…and later this week more tips on how to get this look and a peek into Jess’ life as a personal trainer.

So Cheers to Sunshine, Anticipation, and The Edge,


Beauty, Hair, Makeup, Musings, Personal, Photoshoot

May 1, 2012

The Edge

I have successfully maintained all of my New Years resolutions for years…it’s true! I have ALWAYS accomplished them.  How you might ask? Every year I resolve not to make a New Years resolution.  I’ve been quite successful at it 😉

I suppose why I do not make resolutions is because I feel that I am setting myself up for failure.  Also, I like setting goals on a regular basis when I need to.  It’s not uncommon for me to make mini-resolutions on Saturdays for the following week, on the first of the month, or even on my birthday.

Don’t get my wrong…I love the feeling of a clean slate that the new year brings, and I definitely have things I am wanting to accomplish this year! But I simply refuse to call them New Years Resolutions! And while plans are good (I am the QUEEN of planning!) you know, there’s something exciting too about imagining what sort of surprises this year might bring.

I wonder what those surprises might be?! Love these pics by JennaRae by the way…this is from a shoot this fall that I did with her and AshleyB. Our model Katie was so awesome and I just knew I would want to blog these for New Years! Watch the video below to see a quick behind the scenes peek of that shoot!

Big plans tonight anyone? I am under the weather so I will be at home taking it easy…the only bubbly in my glass will be my Emergen-C! Haha!

So Cheers (quite literally this time!) to Clean Slates, Plans, and unforeseen Surprises,

Beauty, Musings, Personal, Photoshoot

December 31, 2011

New Years Non-Resolutions and Surprises!

Whew, this weekend was a long one! I am sitting at my computer right now in my pj’s thankful for the weekend to be over…Sounds backwards doesn’t it? My weekends are almost always my work days…Sunday night is like my Friday and tomorrow I will be sleeping in! Woohoo!

And although the weekend was busy and felt long I wouldn’t trade it for the world…this weekend was especially exciting because I did makeup for 2 photoshoots.

The first was for my friend Ashley…you know her from her amazing hair styling work for many of my shoots and clients!  She needed some updated headshots and also some fun shots of her “in action” doing her hair styling thing! She is a gorgeous lady inside and out! I can’t wait to see the pics!

Our photog was Dan Rappa.  This was my first time working with him and I was super impressed! Definitely check out his work…he is amazing!

Of course I had to wear my lucky bracelet that day…I ALWAYS wear this baby whenever I have a makeup gig, wedding, or meeting with a client! Once I forgot to wear it and totally hit major traffic on the way to a wedding…Coincidence?? 😉

Our next shoot was all about motion. Swishy skirts, bouncy pearls, swirling hair…you name it we did it! The lovely Laura was so patient as we tugged at her hair and dropped it, swished it, blew air on her, and made her jump again and again until we got just the right shots…

The pic above is of course just from my little ol’ iphone…I cannot wait to see them! I did get a sneak peek tho and I am so eager to see more! Hope you enjoy this shot from Dan as much as I do…

To make sure Laura was glowing and fresh all over I mixed a sheer coverage foundation with a lightweight body moisturizer and smoothed it into her arms and chest.  She is lovely yes?


So Cheers to Long Weekends, to Photoshoots, and to Loving what you do,

Beauty, Makeup, Photoshoot

December 12, 2011

My Weekend: Photoshoot Fun!

Two very frequent questions I get regarding makeup and photography…One is usually from a person who does not wear much makeup (or none at all), and the other from someone who is no stranger to makeup but feels like things don’t look quite right when they get their picture taken.

So the first question is: “Do I need to wear [any, more, extra, heavy, etc] makeup that day?” That day of course referring to anything special where pictures are being taken (usually a wedding, family pics, you know what I mean!).  Well I could probably write a book on this one question, and I will give you my two cents, but I want you to hear what some industry professionals have to say too!

Photo credit: Charleton Churchill Photography

“An image is not just about the moment the camera shutter clicks, but what went into that moment. As an artist, everything inside the image matters: Location, colors, the right outfits, composition, lighting, props, direction, and posing or interaction. However, what good is all that without a properly painted and dressed up person? In the movies, people wear makeup (yes guys too) to enhance their look. Why should we expect less in a photograph?” Charleton Churchill, Charleton Churchill Photography

So in other words: YES! Makeup is a necessary part of a fantastic picture! Plus a well done makeup job will boost confidence which will show in the pictures too! And while a heavy makeup face is rarely what anyone actually wants, it is entirely necessary to enhance your features so you look like YOURSELF in a photo! And of course I always recommend hiring someone to do your makeup for those special times too so you don’t have to worry about it 😉 Even the “no-makeup” look takes makeup and a little extra skill doesn’t hurt!

So moving on…The other question I get asked quite a bit, in fact I was reminded of this issue yet again when a friend texted me the other day (Hi Brae!), is “I wear (a good amount) of makeup but in pics I feel like I always look like I’m not wearing anything. Why and what can I do to change it?”

Photo credit: Lydia Photography

“Everyone wants to look their best in pictures! But most people don’t realize that the pure, beautiful light that is great for pictures also can wash you out–a la that just rolled out of bed ghost face! Done well, makeup can add back in the radiance we all want to compliment that glowing smile!” Lydia Takeoka, Lydia Photography

It’s true, lighting washes people out…it can make a rosy complexion look pallid, a diminish features that seem defined face to face.  Makeup is necessary, more than usual makeup is necessary. 

Here’s the catch: everyone’s definition of “natural” or “dramatic” is different, and how you view yourself (or judge yourself!) in a photo is not going to be how everyone else (or your photog, or your makeup artist) views you. Here’s a few tips that can help you get a handle on this:

  1. Makeup gets cut, cut major, in a photo…depending on the lighting you’re working with, it could even cut what you did in half.  So even those who wear nothing or next to nothing will need a little makeup so you don’t look like death warmed over 😉 And for those of you who wear a full face on a regular basis you may want a more dramatic look or even just kicking it up a couple notches. I recall a recent photoshoot in which I kept having to add so much blush to the model (she was photographing pale and we wanted a flushed look) I thought there was no way it would look right but because of the amazing light we had it cut out so much of the color…she looked naturally rosy in all of the pictures, no one would have known how much blush she had on that day 😉
  2. Intensifying your look for pictures does not necessarily mean piling on more of what you normally do…it’s all about being strategic in product and product placement.  A brighter pop of blush on top of your normal cheek look will help you look awake.  A touch more of bronzer than you usually use on your forhead, temples and cheeks will give extra glow to your complexion.  Slightly more depth in your eyeshadow, or using false lashes will help your eyes sparkle. And do not forget your lips! It’s so easy to lose your mouth in a photo so I recommend using something a shade or two deeper than you normally do to achieve the appearance of your “normal” mouth. Nudes are fun, they are my favorite, but make sure if that’s what you normally do that you use one with more color (like peachy or pinky) because in a picture a true nude could very well make you look like you are ill!
  3. Determine what your starting point is, what your normal is…this isn’t one size fits all! Everyone has a different look and that’s ok! The nutshell is: whatever you do normally should be intensified.  And if you feel like you just can’t figure out why you don’t look right in a pic take some time to to really figure it out: is it that you feel pale?  That your eyes don’t stand out enough? Find those exact things that you want to change and that’s how you’ll know where to strategically use more or different makeup!

So let’s recap: makeup is good!!  It will make your pictures better and boost confidence,  not to mention it’ll also make your photographers job easier too!  One size does not fit all since everyone’s normal varies.  Find your normal, determine the level of intensity you want, and use more than the usual so you don’t feel bare.  Be strategic about product placement in the areas that seem to fall flat when you photograph.   And when in doubt, hire an artist to do the dirty work for you!  Did I mention I know a good one? 😉

So Cheers to Photographers, and to a little extra Polish and Pout in your Pics,

Beauty, Makeup, Photoshoot

November 18, 2011

Photo-Ready Makeup

Nothing says drama like a smokey eye!

A while back I had the pleasure of doing a shoot with the talented photog JennaRae…for these shots we wanted a very dramatic smokey eye…to help emphasize the dark socket I intentionally muted the model’s brows…

Mary (the model) could seriously be wearing dirt on her face and still look gorgeous tho so my job was pretty easy! 😉

For the eyes I started with blue as the base and brown in the crease and then layered matte black on top of it.  Try Dior’s 5 pan eyeshadows in Gris Gris and Navy Design. And look at those lush lashes! Fakies of course…love me some Ardells! I used mostly bronzer and a soft sweep of peach on the cheek…that way the eye was the focus. Pale pink lip completed the look.

Ashley styled the hair on this shoot…I LOVE all of the texture in this updo! Don’t you?!

Layers and Layers of black beads…this necklace is all one piece attached in the back by chain. It actually belongs to me and is from H&M. One of my fav accessories!

Here is a tutorial on a very similar look…simply substitute in more black if you want the level of drama that Mary has in these pics!

There was a time when I would wear dramatic makeup a la Kardashian almost everyday! I had it down to a science and could whip out a uber-dramatic smokey eye in minutes! Nowadays…smokey eye is reserved for special occasions! So what about you…is a smokey eye a regular look for you?  Only on the weekends? Never?


Cheers to layers of beads, and to Drama in your makeup but NOT in your life!

Acessories, Beauty, Fashion, Hair, Makeup, Photoshoot, Trend, Tutorial

November 3, 2011

The Lady is a Vamp…

I promised to tell you how to get the second look and here it is…Our second model in the western bridal shoot was the lovely Brittany! Seriously Lydia, I cannot get enough of these pics! Ha!

I love the idea of wearing a cardigan or wrap in a more casual fabric over a wedding dress!

Don’t you just love these boots?!

For the eyes I dusted a shimmery soft pink shadow all over the lid, a touch of lavender in the crease, and a deeper plum to give her eyes that flirty look on the outer corners and under her lower lashes! Purples are a perfect compliment to a green eye by the way…Use a rich purple near your lashline to really make your green eyes pop! Individual false lashes of course (I LOVE the ones by Ardell…tried and true!). On her lips is the MAC Viva Glam Gaga 2 lipglass. And on her nails is one of my fav nail polish shades: Lacey Lilac by Sally Hansen

Can I just say that I can’t stop looking at all of the amazing accessories?! I am especially loving all this turquoise…There’s just something about contrasting classic with trendy or casual with elegant that just is SO stylish! Love!

To style your hair like this check out my hair tutorial (video included for extra info!). 

I love this look…a subtle pop of color, a nude lip, and amazing accessories…what more could you want?


So Cheers to boots, pearls, and wearing purple eyeshadow (even on your wedding day!),



Beauty, Bridal, Fashion, Hair, Makeup, Photoshoot, Tutorial

October 15, 2011

Get the Look: Western Couture Part 2!

I did a shoot a while back that turned out SO beautifully and I’ve been dying to share the pics with you all but had to sit on them for a bit until they were published in the wedding blog Every Last Detail!  The fabulous Lydia Takeoka took the pics!

All 3 of the models were so gorgeous I thought it’s be nice to tell you how you can get each of their looks!  The first one that we will look at today is Ashley…

Ashley is often my partner in crime on shoots but usually as the hair stylist…this time though I had the pleasure of doing her hair and makeup! She is absolutely lovely, no?! I love the unique accesories: chains and pearls, and that gorgeous ring! And the vintage wedding dress was from a second-hand store!

To achieve this sultry eye I swept a rich cool undertoned brown all over her lid, blended her pinky-peach blusher shade into her crease, highlighted the inner socket and under the brow bone with a shimmery vanilla, and smoked out the edges with matte black shadow. A strong liner and loads of L’Oreal’s Voluminous mascara finished off her look! Try Dior’s 5 pan in Mystic Smokys 004

On Ashley’s nails is OPI’s Monsooner or Later…this was a bridal themed shoot so I especially loved this unexpected flash of color on her nails! Would you wear a non-traditional color on your nails on your wedding day? I would! (And I did! Haha…mine were black!)

Ashley showed up with her hair already with a bit of curl in it which made my job easier…to get this touchable updo start by running a curling iron through your locks or if you have natural texture use a scrunch spray. Next gently tease the crown, gather the hair like you are going to put it in a some-up-some-down look and pin. Pull the ends up and tuck into a french twist or chignon. Pull out small sections of hair as needed to add volume and texture. Then hairspray liberally!

Give this look a try and let me know how it turns out!

Cheers to sultry eyes and vintage dresses,


Acessories, Beauty, Bridal, Fashion, Hair, Makeup, Nails, Photoshoot, Tutorial

October 14, 2011

Get the Look: Western Couture

Remember that photoshoot that I showed you behind the scenes pics of the other day?  Well here are a couple pics of one of the finished looks as well as the how-to video so you can achieve the look too! Are you excited? I am! Haha!

The shoot was on Fall bridal trend…but for now, I just want to show you our amazingly-gorgeous model Ashleigh in her “classic bidal look”…she looked great! Many thanks to @ashleycosmo for styling her hair!


You can have this look too…even if it isn’t your weddings day…this look is great for any special occasion…or even just a Monday! It’s flattering on anyone! So pull up a chair, grab your brushes and shadows, and brush up on your smokey eye skills!


So Cheers to bridal beauty and weddings, but most of all to looking your best regardless of the occasion,

Beauty, Bridal, Makeup, Photoshoot, Tutorial

October 3, 2011

Picture-Perfect makeup