WHAT: BEN NYE matte foundation. Endless array of shades to choose from. 

(As a reference, I am a CE-3 Light Beige in Ben Nye Matte, An NC25 in MAC, Medium Beige in Revlon Colorstay for combo/oily skin, and a MUFE Mat Velvet+ in 35)

PACKAGING:  .5 ounces in a screw-top jar with see through lid


WHERE:  http://www.theatricalmakeupsupplies.com or wherever BEN NYE products are sold

HOW MUCH: $9.00

PURPOSE: To provide a full range of coverage ( depending on application method) for evening skin tone

APPLICATION: Easy. Apply with fingers, sponge, beauty blender, kabuki or foundation brush. Any application method can be used and coverage will vary depending on which you choose.

MY THOUGHTS: I haven’t found a BEN NYE product to disappoint me yet, and this was no different. Amazing pigmentation, goes on evenly and covers flawlessly. Perfect for photo shoots!  A versatile  and amazingly affordable “must have”  for everyday, special days and makeup artist kits. 

RESULT: I have used almost every method of application and find this to be amazing every time.  My preferred method is blending in with fingers first and buffing with a dense synthetic brush for the flawless finish. A little goes a long way and over a face primer, it goes even further.

ADVICE: This is a true matte foundation and sets that way. Wait for a few minutes after application to determine if you still need to set with powder. For sheerer coverage, blend with damp sponge. Medium coverage is best when using a standard foundation brush and for full coverage, blend in with fingers and buff with kabuki. Layer if needed.

*For makeup artists, I do highly suggest this range. Because the multiple containers can be a pain, I suggest depotting the cream foundation into a foundation pallet or craft box with small individual compartments for easy access and kit storage. The lightest and darkest of each range should be sufficient to mix for all skin tones. For photo shoots, I find the BEN NYE set powders are a perfect match for this. Neutral Set and Banana Visage will offer a perfect set from the lightest to the darkest of skintones with no adverse reaction to flash photos.

**For MAX Factor Pan Stick lovers , this is an affordable cream option with amazing coverage, but different packaging. 


I have been deceived…but in the BEST way! You see, foundations are a tricky thing. I mean, with so many companies, formulas, colors, types, consistencies…it can be mind boggling to decide on the best option. This is exponentially more difficult for a Makeup Artist who requires something that would suit a wide variety of faces. FACE ATELIERS strong reputation in the cosmetic industry certainly seemed encouraging, but when my products arrived and I opened them , well, despite the rave reviews I must admit I became skeptical.

You see, in my experience, cream style or thicker liquid foundations are usually the best in terms of coverage and versatility in coverage…so, when I saw the super thin consistency of the FACE ATELIER I was certain that the coverage would leave something to be desired…

I couldn’t have been more wrong, and have never been happier to say “I was wrong.”  🙂

Porcelain Ultra Foundation - FOU1

So, here are the basics:

WHAT: Face Atelier Ultra Foundation available in 10 color shades, and with 2 additional formulas to lighten or darken 

PACKAGING:  Pump top bottle (1 ounce)

CONSISTENCY: Thin liquid 

WHERE:  www.faceatelier.com (link below)


PURPOSE: To create a smooth and even skintone as a base for all other makeup applications

APPLICATION: Easy. Standard liquid foundation that can be applied with fingers, damp sponge, buffed in with a brush or any other way you prefer to put on your foundation. It blends easily with any application style. I have personally tried them all!

RESULT: A glowing, long lasting finish that seemed to leave me looking fresh and radiant while doing an amazing job of evening my skin tone. Sheer to full coverage is possible based on application method.

MY THOUGHTS: I simply love the effect and ease of this foundation. The oil-free, non-comedogenic formula is very deceiving as it is watery thin..but it performs amazingly in terms of coverage. This silicone based product glides effortlessly over skin and leaves a radiant and youthful finish. A little goes a long way making the price tag very understandable and acceptable (to me) as the quality and performance of the foundation is essential to a beautiful finished look. Good for all skin types, but especially nice for dry, problem, mature and sensitive skins. 

OTHER: The matching is easy with the option of ordering samples first for only $1.oo. Once matched, you can also purchase a darkener (O+) or lightener (O-) to adjust and completely customize the color of your foundation if your skin shade varies through the seasonal changes (ie darker in summer and lighter in winter).  You can blend it with your daily moisturizer for the perfect tinted coverage or apply direct for a fuller coverage. This formula is buildable which offers you control over your result without caking and the silicone base makes flaking a non-issue once set. Face Atelier also makes a concealer and setting powder that work perfectly with the foundations to create that flawless finish. Best of all, it is sans SPF so it photographs beautifully making it ideal for any Makeup Artist Kit. It is no wonder that FACE ATELIER was the official makeup sponsor for Madonna’s 2006 Confessions Tour. 

Helpful Tips:

For a sheer coverage you can blend with a damp cosmetic sponge.

Medium coverage is best achieved using your clean fingers or a foundation brush to blend.

For a full or heavier coverage, buff on with a dense kabuki style brush one layer at a time until you reach the desired coverage. (For myself, I applied only one layer and then a touch more in the T-Zone for a full coverage look. Again, it doesn’t take much product to really see a difference.)

For those who desire a matte finish, simply blot skin with a clean tissue after application and then set with a translucent powder. 

This product is SPF free, so if wearing day-to-day, use a moisturizer or primer with SPF.

* To check out the website and order  some samples , visit the  website by clicking here:  FACE ATELIER   

I hope this has been helpful and feel free to check back for updates and before/after photos using this product.


This mineral eyeshadow pallet comprised of 12 shadows is something I have been checking out for awhile. The delay in my getting it ( and the others SLEEK offers) is that it is a UK based brand that isn’t sold in the United States. SUPERDRUG  is one location in the UK that sells it, and others can randomly be found being re-sold on the internet through EBAY, Private sellers and other beauty related companies. Please be careful who you choose to purchase from and research the validity of your seller.

Note: While SLEEK offers a few palettes in it’s regular collection, a few are limited edition and only released on ocassion and because of the great quality and low low cost they do go quickly.


I did happen upon a UK based internet seller and while the process was a bit more complicated that I preferred and quite slow, I did finally get my CURIOUS palette this past week. My MODERN PINUP LOOK was created using this palette, so you can check it out in the “LOOKS” section in the right sidebar if you are interested.————->

So, what do I think? Well, I love it. The palette itself is tiny…about 7″ by 3″ ( rough estimate ) and the pigmentation is very good. While some of the colors are a bit powdery, I am keeping in mind that these are mineral based and that does tend to be the case with most. And for the price ( about 8USD )They do blend well and the packaging is convenient ( size) and there is a large mirror so you can touch up on the go if you are that kind of girl;) All for the cost of HALF a pan of MAC eyeshadow;)

Here are some photos:



As you can see, the colors are very vibrant and while the shadows are often associated with being popular amongst Women of Colour, they are usable and wearable for everyone. No doubt though, that Women of Colour will get a great color payoff from this brand opposed to most.

Here is another pic:

This photo is in direct light with a flash so while it does look more vibrant in person, the lighting does dull the vibrancy a bit. Sorry about that folks.  I realize I do  need to upgrade the camera.


So, I hope this helps anyone who was “Curious” about the SLEEK CURIOUS palette and yes I do think this would be an awesome addition to any Makeup Artist Kit or Personal Kit for those who enjoy color.

I am still on the lookout for more of these as I would like to get the ORIGINAL, STORM, & CHAOS palettes as well as the other limited edition ones to include the SAFARI and the ACID palettes, so keep me updated if you find a quality seller at a reasonable price. Enjoy folks and visit often for updates!


As a makeup artist, if you aren’t concerned with the risks of Swine Flu, then now is the time to get yourself informed and well prepared. Here is some helpful information about how to do just that…

Image of H1N1 influenza virus










Swine Flu, otherwise known as the H1N1 virus  is becoming one of the biggest concerns of the season both for everyday people and service providers who interact with the public. It is commonly transferred through coughing, sneezing and contact with those carrying the virus – many who may be unaware.

The highest risk for Swine Flu are those who are elderly, young children, and people with existing health concerns. Make up artists, while not always in those categories, are not immune to the risks of human contact, and thus, Swine Flu,  so  basic precautions are  necessary and helpful to ease your mind and that of your clients while on the job.

Now, it should be common sense to never take a job if you are feeling ill as you are putting others at risk and your reputation as well. Networking serves a purpose and if you are ILL, find your replacement and get to a Doctor to get cleared before returning to work. Your client will appreciate your honesty and concern for their health.

Here are a handful of tips you should always practice to make everyone a bit safer:

1. Always sanitize your kit before, and after every make up application. Using a misting bottle with alcohol ( strive for the highest percentage you can find – for me it’s 70 or higher%) and go over everything. Tools, work areas…everything! Leave no stone unturned. You can’t be too careful and clients DO appreciate a VERY clean artist;) Using BeautySoClean (found at beautysoclean.com and suggested for ALL MUA Kits!) on your cosmetics will kill bacterias and will not damage your items in the process.

2. Make sure you send a list of proper preparation practices to clients who intend to visit your location, or tell them how to prepare when you are visiting their location. Let them know you want to have the best circumstances for everyone involved. Note signs of illness to watch for, proper hand washing, and it’s importance and anything else relative to the situation you will be in.

3. ALWAYS wash your hands before, after and in between each client. If you feel you must cough or sneeze, do so into a cloth or a sleeve, but never into the open air as this is often how the virus spreads. Wear a mask and gloves if you want to be extra careful. If you are unsure how to do this properly, click here:



4. Do not use your hands to mix  or apply cosmetics. Use a clean, sanitized pallet, transfer and mixing tools only. Keep hands away from your own face as well.

5. Do not blow on your brushes. Learn to “tap” them off  instead if you don’t do so already. Not only is blowing on your brushes pretty unsanitary and unprofessional to begin with, but it risks contaminating your equipment and cosmetics.

These are the basic steps to make your working environment a little safer for everyone involved. For more information about the virus, please do a GOOGLE search for reputable websites with information such as the Center for Disease control found here:


Get informed, stay clean and healthy and take good care;)



I picked up this product after serious scouring for the final solution for my dark , dark circles that always seem to bring down my look – even when my mood is bright. (Thanks Mom for the dark circle gene!)

So, here are the basics:

WHAT: Kat Von D Tattoo Cover. Available in 8 shades. Waterproof, Transfer Resistant Multi-tasking concealer. Concealer brush sold separately. 

PACKAGING:  Squeeze tube with screw on top in a Kat Von D decorated box.

CONSISTENCY: Rich and Creamy  liquid

WHERE:  Sephora.com


PURPOSE: To conceal skin flaws such as redness, blemishes, discolorations and even tattoos.

APPLICATION: Easy. I squeezed a *tiny* bit onto my clean ring-finger tip and patted in until blended. Goes on even and no heavy feeling. 

MY THOUGHTS: I was debating the product based on the cost, but felt I could return it if it didn’t perform as promised. Surely, if this was meant to cover a tattoo, then it should be able to deal with my dark, dark undereye circles, right? 

RESULT: Within a half hour of purchase I was sporting some seriously normal looking eyes. I looked younger, the man of the house noticed and I felt good.  That’s a triple bonus purchase! Highly pigmented and lasted. No settling into creases or fine lines. I’m satisfied!

ADVICE: This is a rich formula with a high degree of pigmentation so be sure to choose the right shade for you. Prepare with a good moisturizer in the eye area or any other area you plan to apply it. Allow moisturizer to settle in. Remember – use a very tiny amount to start. Add more if needed. Set with powder.

*Just for you skeptics out there, I thought evidence would be best, soooo, here is the reality on an actual tattoo:























No editing whatsoever. This is the real deal….


So simply! Just a tiny, tiny bit of concealer pressed in and lightly blended out. I mean, tiny bit. Think the point on a pencil tiny. Let dry for a few seconds, and repeat. Lightly press with translucent powder and that was all there was to it. My tattoo=GONE and Im sure my Mother will be ecstatic when she sees!

Now, the  Dark Circle test. Be warned the initial site could cause nightmares….(no makeup on!)




























Great coverage, matte finish minimal product needed and lasted and lasted…..IMPRESSING!

*Just as a reference, I am a MAC NC25, a MUFE Mat Velvet 35 and a KAT VON D Medium concealer. Your shade may vary.

So, with that, I am off to work on some other things and I hope this was helpful to anyone looking into the quality of the KAT VON D concealers and in my opinion a great addition to any MUA kit.


I know many people are curious to know just how much stuff a Makeup Artist needs to have. Well, it’s actually very little. Now, depending on the kind of makeup you are doing and your personal preferences..it can end up being a lot;)

Personally, I do mostly everyday looks and some special occasion makeup (Weddings etc. ) . I don’t do runway or fashion magazines. My professional kit is rather tame compared to most, but my personal kit…welll, that is a whole different animal;)

If you are just starting out in makeup, and maybe offering makeup looks for your family and friends, here are a few things I would suggest. This is a mix of budget products as well as some pricier items, but ones that I believe are worth it. Just my opinion. Substitute as you feel necessary. These are just ideas based on affordability and not necessarily what I have in my kit. Most items you can readily find at places like TARGET, ULTA, and drugstores. Other items can easily be ordered online.  

NOTE  – I will do a blog post ( at some point) highlighting my personal kit for those interested as well as my storage systems etc. Please be patient as I currently taken on a new position as a Beauty Advisor with a cosmetics/skin care line in addition to Freelance artistry and private makeup lessons. I update as often as possible and appreciate every email and inquiry.


Gentle Cleansing/Makeup Remover Wipes (Neutrogena)

Moisturizer (Cetaphil)

Primer (Monistat Chafing Gel)

Gentle Eye Makeup Remover (BOOTS No7 makes a great one in the Botanical line) 

Invisible Setting Powder (Ben Nye)

Waterproof Eyeliner in Black & Brown (Makeup Forever Aqua Eyes)

Clear Lipliner ( Urban Decay Ozone)

Clear Lipgloss ( Any kind in a squeeze tube will do) 

A good set of Brushes (Sigma)

An excellent non-tinted eye primer (Two Faced Shadow Insurance) 

A lip moisturizer (Vaseline works wonders!)

Plenty of Q-tips, cotton pads and disposable makeup sponges.

Plenty of disposable lip brushes, mascara wands.

Eyelash curler, Spoolie brush, Tweezers, Small cosmetic style scissors  and DUO adhesive for lashes.

False Lashes ( Model21)

A Good volumizing/lengthening mascara (Maybelline Great Lash) 

Clear Mascara (To prep lashes for more volume or to set brows) 

Concealer, Foundation, Blush, Lipcolor and Eyeshadows (Coastal Scents Pallets)

Bobby Pins for pinning back pesky hair;)

Foundations (Coastal Scents Concealer Pallet)
* This pallet can be used for beginners who cannot make a large investment in multiple foundation shades. It is cream based and can be blended with moisturizer to make it more of a tinted moiturizer for those who do not want full coverage. 

* Cinema Secrets (for those with a bit more to invest) makes some of the best foundation pallets available. HD friendly, convenient sizes, and great versatility. Around $20 each, 5 shades included and pre-grouped into various levels or warm, cool and neutral tones.

And if you want something handy to carry it all in, check your local Target, Wal_Mart or Craft store for a convenient craft tote.  Small clear pencil boxes are ideal to separate items (ie; Lash/brow items in one, lip products in another , disposables in yet another  etc) . Personalize it how you like.

This is JUST a basic kit for beginners. For my personal recommendations, items I enjoy and use and industry faves, check out the MUA Kit Suggestions and My FAVES  link in the sidebar menu for info and updates as I get to them;) If you are a MUA with a review/suggestion, I would love to hear from you!

So, with that…go out and start building something BEAUTIFUL!


Urban Decay , known for it’s top quality Eye Primer, has recently offered a few new primer products including an all over face primer and the lip primer (pictured above). What’s a primer you ask? Well, in the simplest of explanations, a primer is a product designed to seal, smooth and prepare the skin for cosmetics giving a smoother application and longer wear. Perfect for days when you want a budge-proof result. Think of primer products as underwear for your makeup;)

I picked up the handy dandy Lip Primer in an effort to make my “cheap” lipcolors stay on a bit longer. I have been experimenting with my Lip Primer and different products from lipcolors to lipglosses and have been quite impressed.

The packaging is classic Urban Decay style -A trendy looking slim metallic tube with the signature purple design and etched design. The product itself is a cream color bullet that twists up and out. It is a bit thick..the consistency of a wax based balm. With a little pressure, this slides right on…invisibly.

I expected it to feel drying, but to my surprise, it was not. I will stress the importance of exfoliated and well moisturized lips to make this your result as well. The product does contain vitamins A, C and nourishing E as well as an SPF of 15.

I usually give it a few moments to set in as I press my lips together gently, then apply my lipcolor on as usual. My lipcolor seems more vibrant, goes on smoother and lasts SO much longer without touch ups. No cracking, fading, or bleeding. I am impressed!

You can find this product here:

So, stop wasting money on buying more lip products. Get the one that makes them all worthwhile and turn any everyday lip product into an *All Day* Product;)

Kristine Marie

~ Budget Beauty Supplies ~

August 23, 2009

When it comes to money, many of us would rather spend less on basics so we can save for our splurges. Here are a few things I picked up from a DOLLAR store. You would be surprised how much you can save by shopping smart. A few bucks here and there adds up over time;)


So, here is a short list of some of the things I found on my last visit to the Dollar store:

Cotton Balls, Pads and Q Tips
Hand Sanitizer (2pack)
Cosmetic Sponges
Double pack mini spray bottles
Organizers (in 2 or 3 packs depending on size)
Travel sized bottles with pumps, caps or spray tops.
Assorted plastic jars ( some stackable) for loose powders, pigments, shadows etc.
Labels for plastic jars
Pencil Boxes for organizing smaller items in your kit
Clear Lip gloss
…and so much more. Stocking up for basic supplies for your personal/professional makeup kit is easy and inexpensive by simply visiting your local Dollar type stores. Just look around and find ways to save so you can splurge later;)

Kristine Marie

I love MAC. It’s no secret. I am not limited to MAC products though. I do exercise options in the cosmetic/skin care realm whenever possible to stay updated and open minded on the many things available, but some products I do prefer. MAC wipes are one of those items.

Available at MAC stores and counters everywhere, MAC Wipes are $18 USD for a pack of 45 and $26 USD for a bluk pack of 100. I purchase the latter due to consumption and cost efficiency. 

I use these wipes on myself as well as clients to cleanse, tone and hydrate on the go , all in one easy step. These cloths are larger than most and what I most love is that they do not dry out. They are saturated but not messy and effective enough to handle some of the toughest jobs including long wearing makeup and waterproof mascaras. Sometimes, I keep a few in my bag on summer days as a quick refresher. I love this product!

The packaging is simple as you see above. The center top lifts up and snaps back down to seal the moisture in. No cheap sticky seal here. Infused with Vitamin E, these nourishing wipes feel cool and slick in use and afterward leave no offensive medicinal smell, residue or sticky feeling like some wipes I have used in the past.

Best of all, one wipe usually does the trick, so in terms of cost efficiency, I feel like I am getting a better deal. With many other brands I am using 2 – 3 of their wipes making it the same cost overall, but less hassle with MAC.

It’s no wonder that a company designed for Makeup Artists would take the steps to make sure they also had the best makeup removers. Efficient, luxurious and a splurge I feel is totally worth it. 

While makeup remover wipes are NO SUBSTITUTE for face washing, toning and moisturizing…these handy little numbers are great  on the go, in a bind or before and after makeup applications. 

For those looking for more cost efficient options, please subscribe and keep an eye out for upcoming FAVORITES and REVIEWS where I will update further on other products I use and enjoy!

Kristine Marie



US $26.00

Yes, another MAC foundation review…

This convenient stick foundation is in a twist up applicator making it handy and easy for application and touching up on the go. It offers a medium coverage that I find easily buildable and its creamy formulation makes it a smooth application on any skin type.

I didn’t find it to be heavy even with a full face application. For sheerer looks, use a damp sponge or brush to blend. For those desiring even less coverage , just apply as a concealer to spots, press in with warm fingers and go.

For those who like a natural contour look, I suggest using the EVE PEARL Method of applying 2 different shades and blending them out before setting them. This will give definition at the base of your makeup application making for a subtle, natural looking contour that won’t rub off or fade throughout the day.

If you desire a matte finish, set with a colorless powder such as BEN NYE (see review in the sidebar) and for those who enjoy a more dewy finish, let it set on it’s own.

Not greasy, not drying, this foundation can be used year round in the proper shades and still deliver a consistent look. I feel it has brought about a balance to my skin when it wears makeup unlike some foundations that seem to dry my skin over time or make it feel oily with continued use. Day after day, this foundation just delivers reliable lasting coverage, a light feel and leaves my skin soft even after removal.

It is 9 grams and retails for $29.50 USD Available in 15 shades.

This product is quite genius to offer convenience and a formulation that works on most skin types in one easy product. Versatile and a great addition to any personal makeup bag or professional makeup artist’s kit.

Now one of my Favorites!

Kristine Marie