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Summer Fling

By: Darrell Redleaf
Posted: May 24, 2006, from the June 2006 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.

I have been working in the beauty-related fields since my early 20s. By the way, that was in the late 1970s, when disco music and Donna Summer reigned supreme. During my years in the business, I have seen trends come and go, and return again.
      As a working makeup artist in Los Angeles, I work with television and film actresses, such as 18-year-old British soul singer Joss Stone. I’ve created looks for her music videos and did her look for the Grammy’s, MTV events, award shows and many television appearances. I also work with Michelle Rodriguez, Scarlett Johannsen and Rachel Bilson, to name a few.
 
Getting the glow
      In this article, you will learn how to achieve a fresh summer glow for your clients. The summer look for 2006 is a fresh, tanned, bronzy glow. This look has been seen for the past several years; Charlize Theron sported it at the 2005 Academy Awards. The cosmetic companies all have jumped on board with the many varieties of bronzers and self-tanners. Many spas now offer spray tanning options. With the advent of all the different choices, you don’t have to lie in the sun or fake bake in a tanning salon to get a summer glow. Many of you have beauty bars in you spas or dabble in the cosmetic arts. You may be a seasoned pro or just like to help your clients experiment with the current trends that they see in the magazines at the grocery store. This is a step-by-step instructional that not only will help to guide you through the steps of creating an exciting new look for your clients, but also will steer them to the right products they’ll need to duplicate it at home.

      Step 1: First, a clean palette is a must. If you are starting from scratch and your client has just finished with a facial treatment or recently has had her hair styled, you will want to begin with a clean, moisturized face.
      Because this is the beginning of summer and it hasn’t gotten too brutally hot and humid yet, assess your client’s skin, and determine what issues they may have that need to be addressed.

     Step 2: There is nothing more beautiful than healthy, glowing skin. After moisturizing, select the right concealer. It is designed to hide blemishes, rosacea, scars, dark spots, hyperpigmentation, discoloration, acne, and pregnancy mask due to birth control or hormonal therapies.
      Most concealers are balanced in tone. Depending on what you are covering, choose a yellow-based hue. Find a color that matches the client’s undertone in about the same shade as their skin tone. Apply concealer using a brush, sponge or finger in the under-eye area, around the nose and the mouth, and on any visible imperfections. You can apply it with a concealer brush, as well as a makeup sponge or the pad of your ring finger. It should glide on, especially because you are applying it on moisturized skin. Next comes foundation.
 
     Step 3: Foundation is available in many forms, including liquid, cream, mousse, powder, mineral powder, airbrush, spray-on, gel and tint. Choosing the right foundation depends on your client’s skin type, as well as the coverage and performance they desire or need. There are brushes and sponges for application. You always can use your fingers, but I prefer brushes.
      Sheer, tinted moisturizers are perfect if you want a superclean sporty, fresh look. Creams, gels, liquids, sticks and powder foundations generally have heavier consistencies and cover more effectively. For summer, opt for a tinted moisturizer rather than a heavy foundation.
 
      Step 4: After the concealer and base are applied, set the finish with a translucent or very lightly tinted powder with a powder brush. This will make the look last much longer.
 
      Step 5: Next, go to the eyebrows, because your “canvas” is ready. To frame the eye, use a powder eyebrow pencil in a color lighter than your natural brow color. If your brows are black, use brown; if they are brown, use taupe; if they are medium blond, use a blond color. To achieve a lifted, bright eye for summer, use an eyebrow brush to brush the brow hairs down first, then apply color from the pencil or an angle brush onto the upper part of the brows, creating a gentle lift and a beautiful arch. Once the color, pencil or powder is applied, softly brush the hairs upward. This covers the brow color, and all you’ll see is a lovely arched eyebrow with an amazing lift.
 
     Step 6: Once the brows are finished and in place, apply eye shadow with a brush. Because it is summer and generally is warmer, do not apply a lot of color on the eyelids.
      Back in the ’70s, the rule was light color on the lid and darker color in the crease. Now, that is reversed. Use the darker color on the lid and the lighter color under the brow bone for highlighting and emphasis. Use just two hues—a taupe color on the lid and a bone color under the brow. Many cosmetic companies market eye shadow duos in these shades. If your client has a darker skin tone, go a bit deeper with the color.
 
     Step 7: From there, go to blush. There also is a wide array of choices for blush, including powders, creams, soufflés, sticks, gels and stains. Depending on how long your client wants it to last, opt for a powder. Creams, soufflés and blusher sticks contain moisturizers in their formulations. In the summer, a powder blush will not create a heavy finish on the skin, like the other options.
      Choose a soft melon, cantaloupe, orange or tangerine color—it looks so pretty. Ask your client to smile, and apply it using a brush or a sponge on the apples of her cheeks for a soft glow of color. Once you have finished with the blush, move on to the lips.
  
     Step 8: The lips should appear as though your client has just eaten fresh fruit—not heavily painted or overdrawn. Use a lip pencil for definition. Choosing the right shade isn’t that difficult—most women have the same lip color, usually depending on ethnicity. A mauve flesh-toned lip pencil is the best. If the client has thin lips, create a fuller appearance by drawing a line just outside the actual lip line. Be careful not to overdraw, however, because it will look artificial and fake. Then, with a lip brush, soften the lip pencil line, and use a gloss for a soft, natural finish.
 
     Step 9: Next, apply mascara. Depending on the heat and humidity level, following are a couple of recommendations. Don’t put mascara on the lower lashes, if possible. Mascara falls off throughout the day, so it opens up the eye and creates a more youthful appearance when used only on the top lashes. Most of your clients probably never would go out of the house without it on their upper and lower lashes, but persist and tell them that they will look younger if they skip the lower lashes. Believe me, they will listen to you. Curl your client’s eyelashes with a really good curler. Use a mascara that only provides color—no lash building, no lash curling—just plain black mascara. Go for no frills—it looks cleaner and fresher.
 
     Step 10: Finally, use a golden bronzing powder on the face. Imagine sitting in the late-afternoon sunshine—where does it hit your face? On the top of the forehead, across the nose and cheekbones, and on the chin. That’s where you want to apply bronzer. There are creams, gels, mousses and powder varieties. Use powder in the summer, and always avoid allowing the face to look too heavily painted.

      Remember, you have choices for yourself and your clients. The industry has advanced tremendously in the past 20 years in regard to glowing products, as well as cosmetics. Steer your clients to a system that works for their lifestyles and their budgets. My motto is that a soft sell is better than a hard sell. Clients come back for more when you are not making them buy way too many products or services. They will trust you and trust builds revenue. Remember, walk in beauty.