MakeUp 101

Samples Are A Girl’s Best Friend

posted by Wendy May 16, 2017 0 comments

Marilyn may have been right about a few things and diamonds are pretty high up on the list, but in the beauty stakes, samples are a girl’s best friend!

The French are glad to freeze their faces

They delight in using ice

But I prefer a brand who gives samples of all things nice

A jar in the hand might be quite continental

But samples are a girl’s best friend

A gloss may be grand

But it won’t pay the rental

On your humble flat or help you at the laundromat

Shops grow cold as girls grow old

And we all lose collagen in the end

But square cut or round shaped these packs don’t lose their shape

Samples are a girl’s best friend!

I save mine up and take them on trips

If you’re a Hey Big Spender at the cosmetics and skincare counters, or even if you are not, there is a way to try before you buy, and to stock up on some yummy things. Many companies and department stores have an in-built policy to give samples to those that ask and some of them offer without an ask: Kiehls is so far the best I’ve come across, and their samples are brilliantly packaged, making them superb for adding to your holiday packing so you don’t have to take big sizes of everything with you. I usually manage to save enough samples to have skincare and hair stuff for trips, saving on baggage allowance  and extra purchasing once you land. Just a thought! Charlotte Tilbury and other brands offer free samples with online shopping but it’s worth asking at the counter too. Don’t be shy – they want you to try their stuff!

New Things on The Block

Spring Is In The Air

posted by Wendy April 9, 2017 0 comments

Time to bring some colour back into your life. Think pinks, corals, reds on cheeks and lips and greens, teals, blues and bronzes for the eyes. With glowing skin and lots of mascara of course xo

Space NK UK

New Things on The Block

K is for Kurated

posted by Wendy March 19, 2017 0 comments

I had to go makeup shopping last weekend. You may not believe me, but it’s not always an enjoyable experience, especially on a crowded Saturday afternoon, and as I take my makeup shopping seriously, it’s usually an expedition with more than one mission involved. It’s actual work. So there I was, list in hand, eyes on sticks, on the beauty floor of the fairly new Nordstrom Vancouver, when lo and behold I spotted a sign that caught my attention. K Beauty, a recent phenomenon of the beauty world, has arrived for a limited time.

When I shop for makeup, for myself or anyone else, which I do frequently, it’s mostly to the same places I’ve known and loved long long time. My choices are probably the same as your choices if you’re near a large town or city and in the western world. I do a round of the counters of the established beauty giants: NARS, Charlotte Tilbury, Chanel, YSL, Laura Mercier, Tom Ford Beauty, M.A.C, Stila, Bobbi Brown etc etc, the doyens of the industry. Nordstrom has all of them and many more. It can be a whole-day beauty bonanza if you’re so inclined (do not go to the strategically placed bar on the first floor…shopping after cocktails is a dangerous activity). So seeing the sign for the K-Beauty pop-up shop immediately piqued an interest and of course I had to investigate.  There, in the corner of the colossal ground floor, amongst the elegant grown-ups of the beauty world, I had some fun and felt like a rookie. All over again.

There is no one product line called “K-Beauty“.  It’s an umbrella term given to the lines that come out of the South Korean industry. The fad of Korean beauty products gained popularity worldwide last year, particularly in the U.S. where they went a bit bonkers for it, and focuses on health, hydration and lots of natural oils. BB Cream, once a mystery to the west but now in loads of makeup bags, originated in Korea.

There are some kooky ingredients to be found here and not the norm of western products: snail slime, bee venom (an anti-inflammatory “faux-tox” alleged to relax facial muscles), moisturizing starfish extract, and egg yolks. There are vegan and cruelty-free lines available, be sure to ask which ones: Color Buckat and Touch In Sol are and there’s more. Korea is already in the process of phasing out animal testing for cosmetics by 2018. The bill entered into law earlier this year.

The boom in sheet face-masking can be “blamed” on the influence of K-Beauty which started in earnest in 2016. The market is now inundated with sheet masks. They are quite fun and very effective so I’m not complaining. Korean skincare regimes involve a series of steps including cleansing rituals (oils are preferred), sheet masks, essences, serums, moisturisers, cushion compacts, fermented products, and essential sunscreen (at night, the sunscreen is replaced by a “sleep cream”), so to the uninitiated it’s rather a complicated business and one I admit I knew little about. The sheet-masking step is essential, and a ritual I’ve taken to happily. I got my hands on another one of the cult Egg Cream Masks (I got one for Christmas) which sell out everywhere in minutes flat.

The Egg Cream
Mask has been a huge seller since it arrived in the west; egg yolk and coconut extracts for intense hydration

With so many steps to the regime and so many lines and products to choose from, the curated pop-up shop is a brilliant introduction to the best of the best of K-beauty, and a stunning marketing idea. Well done Nordstrom for giving many brands their “stateside debut” and for giving us a glimpse into another world of beauty, for both women and men. And thanks to Olivia Kim (http://fashionista.com/2014/11/olivia-kim) for hand picking these gorgeous goodies. Brands showcased in the pop-up include Huxley, BelleMe, Color Buckat, Too Cool For School, Touch In Sol, Za, Onnu, Twenty Four/Seven, DTRT. That’s just for starters.

First impressions were all about presentation. K is for kute and kitch with packaging which is immediately eye-catching and draws you to look closer. K is also for klever. These are the kinds of things you want in your handbag, on the makeup table, to give to friends, to keep for yourself, because they are cheerful and funny. Lots of these products put the girly back into glamour, and not even in a retro way like so many other lines do. The pink faux-fur ball chairs for resting on didn’t hurt either.

Phil Oakley has come to life as a makeup mirror!

Get ready for a barrage of fun photos – I couldn’t stop! So many delightful things. It’s a wonder I put the camera away and made time to actually try stuff.

Time to think pink…

Vivid pink cheek and lip stain stain from ver.22; So Tiny it pops into your handbag

makeup wipes for grrrrrrrls.

Cleansers abound…

Cleansing gels are available

But oils are king

Gorgeous smelling facial mists and sunscreens are as essential as sheet masking, and there’s loads to choose from.

Pretty Filter facial mist, from Touch In Sol, to mattify and beautify

The cherry blossom one is lovely, the gel mist is richer for great hydration

All four pieces of the VT Phyto Skin are in the pop-up, natural formulations and rare to see them in person.

Another fixer spray from Too Cool For School; sets and refreshes with rose water and lemon balm but without sulphates and phthalates

These two mists packaged together are nifty; one for night, one for day with sunscreen, hence 24/7

Nordstrom have not forgotten the boys in the mix, there’a a whole range of skin and shave products. Dear Matt, you’ll be Better Tomorrow!…

And then there’s the makeup, starting with some rather excellent primers and skin beautifiers…

Best base forward from Too Cool For School – glow, brighten or shimmer

I thought these were brilliant, and it tastes really good too. A yummy honey moisturising treatment.

From 24/7, can’t even describe how delicious these are

Look what’s hiding in the other end! A universally flattering peach/orange shade that is much subtler than it looks and very moisturising

Milk Tints, from Too Cool For School, for cheeks and lips. So easy, so pretty. I feel like spring has sprung

Milk Tint and Eye Tint swatches. Gorge. I bought them.

So here’s what I came away with…

Huxley Secret Sahara Oil with sahara cactus oil, quinoa, and acai berry – I have it on good authority that this is “the secret weapon of Korean flight attendants”

Although skincare reigns supreme, there’s lots of makeup to play with too. Top picks: these amazing eyeshadows, from Belle Me. I couldn’t not; you can never have too many brown shadows (my weakness) and the colour of the sun kissed one is glorious. They are silky and shimmery, with a remarkable colour payoff and are VERY long lasting. Impressed. And less that $10 each! I have to go back for more.

Silky shadows in Road Trip and Before Sunset (top)

These eye tints, also from Belle Me are to die for and take me back to Miss Selfridge makeup days, except then they were in purple and pink. These ones have a creamy constancy and with a sponge applicator in tube, they blend to luscious sparkly textures in gorge colours, and last all day. I’ve been working 16 hour days and they’re still on at the end of it. Same with the shadows above. Brilliant. Less than $20. Also brilliant.

Swatches of Cocao Fizz (top) and Kahlua Milk. I got both! Amazing texture and not drying considering the shimmer. Love.

Miss Selfridge flashback,except they were phials of shimmer powder and not cream based.

Another thing I found with incredible staying power are these gel liners, the Dessert In My Eyes range,  from Belle Me. The box of four was $31.25. Such great price points. I’ve already worn the lilac/brown, Macaron, a fab soft colour for a sophisticated way to do purple, and Chocolat, which smudges but then doesn’t move. I’m serious.

A four-pack of delicious gel eyeliners, “Dessert In My Eyes”.

From left to right: Caramel Sugar, Chocolat, Pudding, Macaron. By the way, this is AFTER I tried to wipe them off with a baby wipe. They do not budge.

it didn’t stop there. Behind this New York skyline lies another thumbs up for my makeup kit. It’s Too Cool For School.


Hello highlighter, blush and bronzer/ contour. I can use this on loads of skin tones.

Almost last but not almost least, a very juicy rosewater gel from IPKN. With 20% pure rosewater, it tones and soothes. Can also be used as a soothing sleeping mask, a body gel cream or a hair treatment. Thirty dollars well spent. Like most everything here, silicone-free, phthalate-free, paraben-free and sulphate-free. Even better.

Cooling and soothing. I need to take a better picture!

And of course an Egg Cream sheet mask. They have the All-In-One Mellow Soothing Cream with added collagen, in stock but I had to walk away at some point. Until I go back before Saturday! Fingers crossed.

I’m ready to try this recipe for my tired weekend skin.

Quite a good haul for an unexpected bypass. I spent so much time with K-Beauty the rest of the counters were a rush job but that’s ok. This one is temporary. Have to make the most of it.

Another thing I like about this pop-up, apart from it’s great lighting and knowledgeable but laid-back sales team, is their inclusive advertising – these “models” are friends of the photographer from Seattle. Real, interesting faces representing world beauty (but not all ages) was a refreshing change.

All in all, a really delightful shopping experience.  This may be fun skincare and lighthearted makeup but it demands to be taken seriously.

Seeing all of it, new and exotic, made me feel like a beauty newbie, in the most delightful way, which is no mean feat for someone so long in the makeup tooth. My makeup intern too had a blast; she’s gifted with great artistic ability, as you can see…

If you want some makeup joy in your life, head down there, you’ve got until March 26th. I’m quite sure I’ll be going back myself. But I’ll try not to get another brown eyeshadow, promise. If you’re lucky, Kevin, who is vastly knowledgeable about what’s on the shelves, will be on duty to point you in the right direction: towards South Korea.

If you’re nowhere near Vancouver, or a store that carries Korean product lines have a look here, but please don’t blame me. Goodnight or good morning, Glossaholics.
Cult Beauty Ltd.

PRODUCT REVIEWS Mylifeinmakeup.com does not receive any monetary compensation to review products. Most reviews are based on products purchased personally, and preferred, or not. Occasionally I will receive products from makeup companies and will choose whether or not to review them here. Receiving products has no bearing on the opinion of the review, nor whether I choose to review it or not. All opinions are just that, and are honest and unbiased. Recommendations are based on the knowledge I have gained in 18 years as a professional makeup artist. Mylifeinmakeup.com is not to be held responsible if you decide to purchase an item and are dissatisfied with it.
MakeUp 101

Rolling, Rolling, Rolling

posted by Wendy January 30, 2017 0 comments

Here’s a nifty little trick to do if you have a metal-tubed highlighter pen like the cult classic Touche Éclat from YSL Beauty. Don’t throw them away when they run out xo

New Things on The Block

The Year of the Rooster

posted by Wendy January 26, 2017 0 comments

Chinese New Year is soon upon us. I’m a bit bloody sad The Year of The Monkey has flown by so quickly because it’s been one of great inspiration and change; this monkey really got out to swing through the jungle! But it’s out with the monkey, in with the cock and time to stop the bull. Pardon the expressions.

Goodbye Monkey!

The Circle of Animals, Ai WeiWei’s Golden Horoscope Sculptures were one of my art highlights of 2015. I made a special trip to the Portland Museum of Art

According to the Chinese Horoscope, people born in Rooster years have “many excellent characteristics, such as being honest, bright, communicative and ambitious. Most of them are born pretty or handsome, and prefer to dress up. In daily life, they seldom rely on others. However, they might be enthusiastic about something quickly, but soon be impassive. Thus, they need to have enough faiths and patience to insist on one thing”. Sounds like Rooster girls aren’t happy with just one lipstick.

For all the Roosters, and the rest of us that like to dress up (our faces), there’s lots of lovely goodies around in honour of this new year. No reason not to be a beautiful chicken. But please remember to stay away from rats!

Wei Beauty



PRODUCT REVIEWS Mylifeinmakeup.com does not receive any monetary compensation to review products. Most reviews are based on products purchased personally, and preferred, or not. Occasionally I will receive products from makeup companies and will choose whether or not to review them here. Receiving products has no bearing on the opinion of the review, nor whether I choose to review it or not. All opinions are just that, and are honest and unbiased. Recommendations are based on the knowledge I have gained in 18 years as a professional makeup artist. Mylifeinmakeup.com is not to be held responsible if you decide to purchase an item and are dissatisfied with it.


MakeUp 101

Glossaholics Giveaway

posted by Wendy January 7, 2017 0 comments

Glossaholics! Welcome to my first ever makeup giveaway!

I am as much of a glowaholic as a glossaholic and the new year is a good time to think about reviving your skin and getting a glow back after the busy holidays season.  So I’m giving away an amazing Wonderglow from Charlotte Tilbury Cosmetics, which is a beautiful primer/ moisturiser/all-round amazing thing.

Worn alone it gives a beautiful dewy finish that not only moisturises but reflects light, creating a soft -focus look for you skin and blurring imperfections.  Alternatively, it can be worn under foundation, mixed with your foundation to sheer it out with a glow (this is one of my favourite tricks for camera), or patted over it at highlight points. It’s a hugely versatile beauty product whether you like the look of makeup or not.

Because it has a warm gold undertone and not a pink one, it boosts but doesn’t look metallic or ashy on darker skins yet also compliments lighter ones; basically it’s your skin but better, which is why it’s always in my kit! It’s packed with lots of good things including a form of hyaluronic acid. By the way, Wonderglow won a CEW Insiders Choice Award in 2015, which, if you haven’t heard of it, is like an Academy Award for beauty products.

A glow is as good as a rest!

The rules of the competition are fun and easy:

  • follow @glossaholics
  • “like” the photo of the Wonderglow prize I’ve posted on Instagram
  • tag 2 friends in the comment section

The competition is open until Jan 31st, to residents of the UK, USA and Canada. The winning entrant will be announced Feb 1st on Instagram so your account must be public on that date. The prize will be sent by mail. Good luck and I hope you enjoy participating!

Get glowing, Glossaholics, here’s to a beautiful 2017 xxoo


Per Instagram rules, we must mention this is in no way sponsored, administered, or associated with Instagram, Inc. By entering, entrants confirm they are 13+ years of age, release Instagram of responsibility, and agree to Instagram’s term of use.

PRODUCT REVIEWS Mylifeinmakeup.com does not receive any monetary compensation to review products. Most reviews are based on products purchased personally, and preferred, or not. Occasionally I will receive products from makeup companies and will choose whether or not to review them here. Receiving products has no bearing on the opinion of the review, nor whether I choose to review it or not. All opinions are just that, and are honest and unbiased. Recommendations are based on the knowledge I have gained in 18 years as a professional makeup artist. Mylifeinmakeup.com is not to be held responsible if you decide to purchase an item and are dissatisfied with it.
MakeUp 101

MakeUp Brush 101

posted by Wendy December 23, 2016 0 comments

You may not be a Picasso but good make-up brushes make for good make-up artistry, and one of the questions I am frequently asked is which are the best and which the most essential. So here it is, Brush 101, for the make-up addict and the newbie alike.

If you’ve attempted make-up brush buying recently, in shops or online, you might be overwhelmed at all the choices. At various price points and styles, it can be confusing, unless you’ve used a lot of them or are already loyal to a particular brand. I’m going to give you some good advice which I hope will help if you’re doing your Father Christmas (aka Santa) list or if you want to get gifts for a make-up addict.

I have, over the course of my career, amassed many brushes! My first make-up job was at MAC, and we were lucky enough to get a generous amount of free stuff, twice a year. I mostly chose brushes because they were most costly, and I had an endless supply of makeup, so even though I was there just over a year before my freelance career really took off, I had a good collection of basic brushes to use for work. I’ve took great care of them and even have some of those original MAC brushes (when they were still fabriqué en France). Today I lug around a vast number of brushes, each one with a specific job to do, made with real hair and acrylic (both have their purpose); I have to have multiples because there are days when I can use upwards of a hundred to get a job done. I have my favourites, use them constantly and get anxious if I can’t find them! Which happens occasionally (intro sad music).

My working makeup brushes ; they need their own chauffeur

For my personal use, it’s a different story, so here’s what I think you need to be able to create beautiful makeups on yourself. With these basic but splendid brushes you can achieve most looks without blowing the budget, and of course you can build on them as budget and desire allow. As with most things it’s worth spending the money on good quality brushes but it’s not always necessary. The ones I’ll recommend here are not specialty brushes and are the ones I have in my makeup bag. You may be surprised at how few I think you need!

Concealer brush – This is one of the occasions when acrylic rules. A good brush for concealing under and around the eyes should be flat but flexible. The brush needs to have acrylic “bristles” because they are better for use with creamy products. My fave concealer brush looks like a miniature oar, and it can bend around all the curves of the eye. I got mine in Canada from a line called Quo and it was cheap! Look for a brush like this…

Looks like an oar and can paddle around the curves of your face


Spot brush – for deleting life’s imperfections. This brush should be very small and have a good point to it, because you’ll literally use it to ‘dot’ concealer on to whatever it is that needs vanishing. If you use a big brush and lots of product you’ll draw attention to a spot or blemish. My very favourite dot brush was one from Japonesque which went “missing”, grrrr, and was then discontinued. The trials and tribulations of a MakeUp Artist! I was introduced last year to the handmade brushes of London Brush Co and now love them for dotting.

Dot dot dot

Medium eyeshadow brush – it’s better if this one is a bit fluffy, to pick up lots of product and deposit it onto your eyelid! Soft bristle brushes are gentle on the eye area and a medium size is the most useful to start with. Because I am clever I have a double-ended one, two brushes in one, from iT Cosmetics.

Crease brush – so called because the shape of the brush fits comfortable into the crease of your eyelid. It should be nicely tapered to deposit shadow into that crease and then blend it beautifully. I’m currently using an acrylic one from the Sephora/Pantone collaboration and really love it. The Pantone Colour of the Year that year was emerald and it’s gorge.












Pencil brush – You may not have even heard of a pencil brush, but believe me, you can rewrite your makeup with a pencil! It looks just like a stubby pencil and is magnificent for smudging and smoking up your eye makeup. Use it to smudge pencil eyeliners close to the lash line or to apply eyeshadow all around the eye for a true smokey eye. I love pencil brushes! Honestly, invest in one, it’ll change things. My favourite one is #219 from MAC and looks like this…

I always carry a pencil or five

Powder brush – I intend to change your opinion about powder brushes. They are not essential. If you think you have to “set” your makeup with powder then we should talk. Gone are those days, products are made to last and you’ll lose all your glow. Too much powder makes your skin look flat, it looks like makeup, and it’s ageing. Nobody likes a Mrs Danvers. If you must have one (say you need need to wear powder in the t-zone) make it a small and fluffy one. Made from real hair, it should gently deposit powder onto the areas you need it and not your whole face. If you really, really think you need to powder your whole face you’re probably not in the right foundation for your skin type. There are so many beautiful foundations for oilier skins. If you need recommendations, please message me, I’m so happy to help. My favourite powder brush is a small square-shaped natural hair brush from Japonesque which is incredibly soft.





Dome brush – a dark horse of the brush world but an amazing and useful tool. Dome brushes are fantastic for contour and blush because they blend and blend and blend. I really love my dome brush. It’s from Royal & Langnickel in LA, is 100% vegan with supersoft synthetic bristles and was about U.S$15 US. A great investment, I’ve had it for ages. Check them out online, they have amazing brushes.

These last three aren’t essential but you might want to add them sooner rather than later..

Bronzer brush
– instead of the powder brush, the bronzer brush should be the biggest, softest brush in your arsenal. I love a real hair brush for bronzer and use a large tapered MAC brush (#138) to pick up the bronzer and sweep it where it needs to go – over the cheekbones, down the nose, across the forehead. I do a sweep on the neck as well. The tapered brush is a perfect shape for sweeping around, doesn’t deposit too much product because it’s fluffy and soft, and blends beautifully. There are loads of lovely acrylics that will do the same job, try to find a tapered one. Remeber, the larger the brush the less product it will pick up, which is what you want when you do bronzer so it looks real and not baked. If you never wear bronzer then a) you are very lucky  b) you needn’t have read this part!

M.A.C brush #138 – tapered to give beautiful bronzes on the countours of the face

Lip brush – If you’re a glossaholic then just use the wand it comes with, same for so many lip products. Lipstick bullets are shaped to be applied straight to the lip, but if you are more comfortable with a brush, get a proper one and not one of those weeny retractable things which I swear are made for dolls. I use a lip brush (when doing someone else’s makeup) that wasn’t designed to be one but it works for me; it’s paddle shaped and not too tiny and it’s flat edge means I can do all the lip shaping with the brush itself. I picked up loads of these at a trade show, the company name has worn off but it looks like this and has flexible bristles for applying to curves.

Flat Eyeshadow Brush -these come in handy for doing fancier eye makeups. The flat shape is good for picking up and depositing eyeshadow if you do more dramatic eyes. Then use your crease brush or medium brush to blend it. This one is #195 from M.A.C.

Great shape for shaping!


And the most essential Brush of all! Just can’t help myself. Boom Boom.


So I think that’s it! Shocked? Only seven brushes in the essential category and three more for fun, think how much money Father Christmas will save.

Seven Sisters and three cousins. With these, your art will flourish!

By the way, I’m not sure about the necessity of an angled liner brush (though I know that many people love them). So many eyelining products have pen applicators which are brilliant; this brush has been made almost redundant, not to mention it’s quite hard to do a great liner on yourself with one of these. If you’re an aspiring makeup artist then by all means have a few, because you can do someone else’s cream or gel liner with them.

I’m hoping very few of you are using them to put powder in your brows because there are much better choices out there.  I was never a fan of powder in brows because it looks like….powder in brows!

Yes, I do have one. This one is sharp and lovely and from NARS

If you add a Beautyblender to your essentials you’ll be laughing. It does away with an expensive foundation brush, takes your makeup to the next level AND you can use it for powder (see previous post).

When buying brushes hold them in your hand to feel the weight and to see if the length of the handle is right for you. I prefer long handled brushes, which are pretty standard. Short handled ones are best left to travelling brush sets I think but if they feel better to you then do it. By the way I don’t have a travelling brush set – I take my trusty brushes wrapped in paper towel in a ziploc. They are great travelling companions.

My very first makeup brushes were a gift from a glamourous aunt, and from Marks & Spencer. They had ceramic handles and I knew nothing about the world of makeup then, oh happy days! I kept them in a Snoopy container, which I still have and is as precious to me as my KitKat 25th Anniversary mug.

Brushes have come a long way since then baby, but you don’t have to go a long way to find good ones. Department stores, chemists (drug stores in N America), makeup stores and online, take your pick and have loads of fun with them! Doing makeup, your own or someone else’s, is not called artistry for nothing. The canvas may be human but the techniques are similar, and like any artist, the tools of your trade can help you or hinder you. Best of luck!

P.S Don’t forget to take care of your beloved brushes!! They will serve you long and well if you do…(see “Spring Cleaning” post from last year on how to take care of them).

There’s lots of price points for makeup brushes here:
Space NK UK

For those of you in Quo territory:
Beauty Boutique

In kangaroo territory (lucky you!):
Shop Australia's Largest Online Beauty Store at RY.com.au. Free Delivery $99+ & Free Returns. Click Here!

PRODUCT REVIEWS Mylifeinmakeup.com does not receive any monetary compensation to review products. Most reviews are based on products purchased personally, and preferred, or not. Occasionally I will receive products from makeup companies and will choose whether or not to review them here. Receiving products has no bearing on the opinion of the review, nor whether I choose to review it or not. All opinions are just that, and are honest and unbiased. Recommendations are based on the knowledge I have gained in 18 years as a professional makeup artist. Mylifeinmakeup.com is not to be held responsible if you decide to purchase an item and are dissatisfied with it.

New Things on The BlockThese Are A Few of my Fave Things

Pretty Cheeky Part I

posted by Wendy September 25, 2016 0 comments

DID YOU KNOW?! That, in my opinion, there are three makeup products with the ability to make you look less tired and more like a human being ready to go out the door, in minutes. They are blush, concealer and mascara (not necessarily in that order) and because they are my top three makeup products, I am always on the search for the perfect ones and willing to try many, as long as they pass an initial inspection.

I have found the perfect concealers; one for under eye and one for the face, because, remember, you mustn’t use the same one for both (previous posts “Amaze Your Face With Amazing Concealer”  and “Stick To It“) but am still looking for the ultimate blush and mascara. There may of course, be more than one of each perfect one. I am willing to consider that idea…different seasons call for different textures and colours etc, etc. I once had the perfect mascara, but, heartbreakingly (slight exaggeration) it has been been discontinued everywhere but in the US and when my stock runs out I need a runner-up to use until I get back to a US drug store. By the way, the brand is not an expensive one and the brush is beyond comparison for the short-of-lash. I’ll tell you about it soon, and hope that the company doesn’t decide to do away with it once and for all. In the meantime, I continue my search, so any recommendations are welcome.

Am back in the UK at the moment, and happily coming across product I haven’t seen yet in North America where I’ve been doing most of my work recently. Such are the joys of being on the road. I love that first trip to the drugstore/chemist/beauty supply, to see how the other halves live. This is not, of course, the only reason to travel but I do always enjoy a good snoop around the makeup shops. I also love a good chat about makeup with people who live or shop somewhere different than I do.

I am pretty open minded when it comes to my quest for the perfect product; well you have to be don’t you or you might miss something brilliant! And so, when a great friend and fellow beauty addict, who shall remain nameless unless she chooses otherwise, recommended WATERCOLOUR Liquid Blush by Daniel Sandler I decided to give it a go for myself, for the interests of beauty and for all of you, dear readers. Behold! For I think I may have found the Holy Grail of cheek colour.

productThe liquid blush is very easy to use; even those of you who think you can’t do makeup can do this. It comes in 15 beautiful shades, you can use one or mix them (for instance to get a bit of shimmer) but let’s start simple. I tested the shade Cherub which is an excellent soft, natural colour which could be used on fair to mid -toned skin.

How to use: Apply on top of your moisturiser and foundation but under any powder products if you use them. Because this is a liquid product, you have to apply it over other liquid products, not dry ones like powder, or you’ll end up making mud on your face.  Pretty coloured mud, but mud all the same. If you use a dry foundation (and I hope you do not) this may not be the blush for you. If you must use powder, put it on AFTER the liquid blush. The blush itself is oil free and silicone based, so don’t let too much oil be a worry if you’re thinking of trying this. This also lets it blend like a dream.

Shake the bottle! Do this every time you use it. Pigment will separate in any suspension, so you must shake it every time.

blushblend blod

Dot a small amount onto your hand or straight onto a brush. I like to use the back of my (clean) hand and that way pick up just enough product. A little goes a long way, I used a tiny dot on each cheek. Do a cheesy smile and locate the fattest part of your cheek: that’s where the dot of blush goes. Blend it out with a brush (I like a dome brush, like the one below, which is brilliant for any cheek products, dry or wet) or the ubiquitous BeautyBlender sponge ( you may know by now how much I love these). This is not about a heavy, powdery blush with lots of highlight and contour look, but about having a soft, natural but gorgeous blush for work or date night. If you must do a contour, apply it before the blush. Again I would recommend a liquid contour or a least a cream one. Did I mention I hate powders??

Dome brushes are marv fro blending liquids

Dome brushes are marv for cheeky things

There you have it. You should be looking quite cheeky!

This cheek colour is not going to budge. This is how I know that, a water test on watercolour….blush. Nothing happened!  So you’re not going to sweat it off or get messed up in the rain or humidity. I took it outside on a rainy day in Brighton, and it withstood that, a walk on the beach, even a dog kiss! In fact, it was still on at the end of the night.

Concealer, mascara, blush. Out the door in seven minutes!

He Loves Me, He Loves Me Blush

He Loves Me, He Loves Me Blush

This product is a shopping cart winner! I’ll definitely be picking up more for my kit and personal use.


There are twelve shades of WATERCOLOUR Liquid Blush – something for every skin tone, as well as one called “Icing“to layer on if you must go frosty. I won’t on a daily basis, because I really love the second-skin, soft look of it. But I know a girl who will! The “Icing” shade will of course go far as a highlighter. I much prefer liquid or cream highlighters compared to powder, so pick one of those up too if you like a high beam. And use a darker taupe-based shade for a super-blendable natural contour, if you must.

Daniel Sandler products can be a little hard to find in person. It sells in various small outlets around the UK, and at TopShop beautyMART at Oxford Circus, or check www.danielsandler.com

P.S if you’re out for a walk along the beach in Hove, take some inspiration from the colour combos of the beach huts. Amazing!










PRODUCT REVIEWS Mylifeinmakeup.com does not receive any monetary compensation to review products. Most reviews are based on products purchased personally, and preferred, or not. Occasionally I will receive products from makeup companies and will choose whether or not to review them here. Receiving products has no bearing on the opinion of the review, nor whether I choose to review it or not. All opinions are just that, and are honest and unbiased. Recommendations are based on the knowledge I have gained in 18 years as a professional makeup artist. Mylifeinmakeup.com is not to be held responsible if you decide to purchase an item and are dissatisfied with it.

Which One Are You?

posted by Wendy August 31, 2016 0 comments

I’ve been in the UK for most of the summer – all over the country, in cities and towns and villages, observing women and girls of all ages and from all walks of life. It seems to be that their make-up styles can be categorised into five groups, which is perhaps a generalisation but that is, after all, what people do when they observe other people.


The Carefree or Couldn’t Care Less

They are makeup-less, or carefree or both. Neither caring nor wanting to present themselves in a certain way. I do not judge them, but it is pointless spending too much time on them for my purposes here. I do wish them well. And think of all the money they’ll save! Although research has shown that they may miss out on other things financial and may even not earn as much long-term as those that present themselves in a more polished way at work. True.

The Clueless  They might be in the above category but maybe they don’t attempt much because they don’t know how to. I meet more of these women (and girls and boys) in my non-working makeup life than any of the others. They ask a lot of questions and have a great interest but not much confidence. Yet.

She's found her look and it's fab

She’s found her look and it’s fab

The Lucky Ones

The ones that have found their best look, perhaps by helpful intervention at some point in their lives, or are self-taught. They use makeup to their advantage, presenting the best version of themselves, without hiding  behind it.

The Eccentrics  The really independently British girls and women who wear originality on their faces and on their bodies, displaying a certain flair that I find essentially British but that has nothing to do with race – again of all ages and places and so interesting. They make me happy to think about the confidence they have or are developing and the music and fashion choices that will ultimately make up the whole picture of their lives. They are not stuck in one particular style – they might be the retro girls, the glams, or the new punks – but are claiming it for their own. Their look will probably morphe many times in their lives as their stories progress. This group is really my favourite, for all those reasons and because it’s like looking back into my own 80’s youth and seeing the fun we had with makeup and what it could mean to us in our tribalistic tendencies (then it was New Romantic, Soul Girl, Mod, post-punk, office girl, not necessarily in that order or independent of one another). I think it’s a very British phenomenon. I don’t see it anywhere else.

kateb youngviv

Zandra Rhodes, then

Zandra Rhodes, then

adamantZandra Rhodes, Adam Ant, Siouxie Sioux, Isabella Blow, Kate Bush, Toyah Wilcox and the grandmother of them all, Vivienne Westwood, all used make-up to tell their stories in a wonderfully eccentric but beautiful way. Not necessarily how you want to look but I admire their strength and how they use their image to create it. There is a new breed of these women, thankfully. The torch has been passed and some interesting women are running with it…

Florence Welsh, one of the fabulous new Eccentrics

Florence Welsh, one of the fabulous new Eccentrics

crazycontourThe Dolls  This final group is the most worrying to me, and the most boring at the same time. The super-contoured, mega-highlighted, lip-lined, false-eyelashed dollface girl with the perfect (but not) eyebrows of massive proportion. I see loads of white shiny pencil trails all over these girls. And sigh. Because I can’t see where the real girl, and so her real beauty starts, only where it ends. I wonder what each one look likes Underneath It All (cue song) because there is such a conformity in their faces that the individual is lost. It’s a terrible shame, and a dangerous one; call me a feminist makeup artist. For me makeup has always been about finding the best -looking version of ourselves, not about putting masks on women and telling them to look the same. Obviously this happens to some extent in the beauty and cosmetics industry, we follow trends or emulate women we admire. Film stars, musicians and sometimes princesses have been the modern beauty trend-setters but I find the new breed of beauty queens (you know who they are) strangely disturbing and anti-individuailstic. Anyone can go online to see how to disappear themselves behind mega-makeup applications.  I saw one recently which was about how to contour your nose with a FORK. I kid you not. And it’s really ugly. It’s a look reliant on wearing enormous quantities of makeup, (lots of it very shiny) which inevitably breeds strong makeup dependency issues, and I wonder what will happen as these girls and young women grow up and grow older? Will the day come when they get rid of it all and opt for none or a pretty, natural look?  Or will they go on wearing the lashes and contour into their old age.

Whatever Happened to…too much makeup?

Whatever Happened to…too much makeup?


I’m waiting for some serious makeup rehab issues in about four years when, fingers crossed, everyone will tire of the hideousness. I’m going to set up a help line.

1 800 266 8687 (CON TOUR)