Beauty // July 21, 2014

Not every artist uses paper and paint. Some use a guitar or a cupcake tin. Brandy Allen uses a mascara wand. A professional makeup artist to the stars, with clients including model/actress Jessica White and singer Marsha Ambrosius, Brandy Allen uses her passion and her pursuit of all things pretty to make people look as beautiful on the outside as they feel on the inside. Her work has transformed some of our favorite stars and graced red carpets everywhere. Recently, she was featured in Essence Magazine. We caught up with this beauty expert and had her break down some of our favorite celebrity looks.

Makeup Made Easy With Celebrity Makeup Artist Brandy Allen

Brandy Allen: The inspiration behind Uzo Aduba's (Orange is the New Black) look was red carpet ready. Soft neutrals with a smokey eye.

Step 1: Skin
- Prep the skin with an oil controlling moisturizer and a mattifying gel.
- Apply Keyvn Aucoin Liquid Airbrush Foundation and powder the skin lightly in shiny areas.
- Use Iman's Clay Bronzer around the face for a soft glow and highlight.

Step 2: Eyes and Cheeks
- Apply Bobbi Brown 'Charcoal' Eyeshadow all over the lid and around the bottom lash line.
-Add a small wing liner at the top with Stila's 'Stay All Day Liquid Eye Liner'.
- Use Anastasia's Brow Wiz in 'Ebony'.
- Add individual lashes with Loreal Volume Million Lashes mascara.
- Add Bobbi Brown Shimmer Blush in 'Coral'.

Step 3: Lips
-Use MAC's Chestnut lipliner with Viva Glam V lipstick and gloss.

Brandy Allen: The inspiration behind Michelle William's look look was a bright lip with bronzy skin.

Step 1: Skin
- Prep and moisturize the skin.
- Apply Cover FX Full Coverage foundation on the face, this can also be used as a concealer under the eyes and on any blemishes.
- Highlight under the eyes, forehead, nose and chin with Ben Nye's Banana Powder.

Step 2: Eyes and Cheeks
- Apply MAC 'Texture' and 'Bamboo' on the lid and crease, conceal the brow bone.
- Use Anastasia's Brow Wiz in 'Ebony'.
- Add Dior Show Mascara top and bottom.
- Add NARS 'Taj Mahal' blush.

Step 3: Lips
- Finish this look with Maybelline 'Fuchsia Fever 140' with clear lip gloss.

Bandy Allen: The inspiration behind Angela Simmon's look was a classic red lip and bronzed skin.

Step 1: Skin
- Prep the skin with an illuminizing primer (MAC Strobe Cream). This hydrates, preps and smooths the skin with an iridescence.
- Apply Dior Nude Skin with a double fiber blending brush. Conceal any pigmentation with Cover FX Full Coverage.
- Dust Iman's Clay bronzer around the face and on the contour of the cheek.
- Highlight the cheeks, nose and chin with Benefit Cosmetics High Beam.

Step 2: Eyes and Cheeks
- Apply MAC's 'Woodwinked + Teddy Kohl eyeliner.
- Use Anastasia's Dip Brow in Dark Brown.
- Add your favorite lash strip, I used Whip Your Lash 'Fancy' with Younique 3-D Fiber Mascara.
- Add NARS Orgasm blush to the cheek.

Step 3: Lips
- Finish this look with MAC Ruby Woo Matte Lipstick.

Brandy Allen: The inspiration behind Mya's look was a fresh, clean face with minimal makeup. I wanted her to look perfect and angelic.

Step 1: Skin
- Prep the skin with an illuminizing primer (MAC Strobe Cream). This hydrates, preps and smooths the skin with an iridescence.
- Apply Dior Nude Skin with a double fiber blending brush. Conceal any pigmentation with Cover FX Full Coverage.
- Dust MAC's Mineralized Skinfinish as a bronzer to add dimension and glow. On the highlights of the face, add Smashbox's Artificial Light Luminizer.

Step 2: Eyes and Cheeks
- Apply MAC 'Amber Lights' on the lid, 'Espresso' in the crease and Teddy Kohl Eyeliner top and bottom.
- Use Anastasia's Brow Wiz in 'Ebony'.
- Add your favorite lash strip, I used Whip Your Lash 'Fancy' with Chanel Volume Mascara top and bottom.
- Add NARS Orgasm blush to the cheek.

Step 3: Lips
- Finish this look with MAC Snob Lipstick and Viva Glam V gloss.

Published in Beauty

MW University // February 10, 2014

There is nothing worse than having back-to-back classes and being stuck with no lip-gloss. If you are like me, your school bag is an important part of your ensemble, so you change it regularly. And, if you are really like me, rushing to class leads to forgetting the essentials. I’m sorry but being without essentials is extremely distracting. How am I supposed to listen to an hour lecture and type the speed of lightening with ashy hands? I can’t speak up in a group meeting when I’m afraid that the odor of my morning coffee and onion bagel might melt off my classmate’s mustache. In order to avoid these potentially embarrassing moments, I came up with a solution: the minimergency kit. This kit is only for your book bag, and carries everything that you might need in a moment’s notice during a hectic school day. Here is the recipe for the perfect minimergency kit:

1. The Bag

This kit should be about the size of a small make-up bag, and should be brightly colored, so you won’t forget it when switching bags. Here are a few of my favorites this season:

                   Juicy Couture, $42                                                          Sephora, $18

2. Lip-gloss

Everyone has a favorite lip-gloss that they cling to for everyday use. However, you don’t want to put your favorite in the bag, because you will end up taking it out, and forgetting to put it back in. Either buy an extra of your favorite product, or put another option in the bag, so it’s always there. I always carry the Lancome Juicy Tube in Pink Horizon in my minimergency kit. Although, MAC’s Tinted Lip Gloss in “Oh Baby” is my favorite.

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3. Chap Stick and Lip Balm

Lip balm has different purposes than lip-gloss. There is nothing worse than having extra chapped lips, and trying to cover it up with sticky lip-gloss. There are a few chap sticks that have a tint, such as Maybelline’s Baby Lips, which have dual purposes. But, having some sort of soothing lip moisturizer is a must!

4. Lotion

I hate being ashy, and the hand soap in the lecture hall bathrooms is never kind to the skin. I like to keep a small bottle of hand lotion on me at all times. Also, during the summer, the terrain can be rough on sandaled feet, and you don’t want to be the girl with gray toes because you left your lotion in the pocket of your last book bag. I am a big fan of Carol’s Daughter Almond Cookie Shea Souffle, but I would suggest buying a travel size bottle of your favorite lotion.

5. Hand Sanitizer

Toilet seats have considerably less bacteria than a computer lab keyboard. And, believe it or not, there are still a few people that think it’s OK to sneeze into their hands, and then open the classroom door. Enough said!

6. Chewing Gum

Avoid coffee and bagel breath by keeping a pack of gum in your minimergency kit. Another perk: chewing gum can actually keep you alert by keeping you moving. It’s never a good idea to make a presentation while chewing gum. But, keep it on you for those slow mornings and potentially insulting breath.

7. Hair Ties, Hair Clips, and Bobby Pins

Having hair in your face can be incredibly annoying during a long day. I find that most people keep a hair tie around their wrist for this, but maybe I have big wrists, because they always cut off my circulation. I keep a whole pack of hair ties and one large hair clip in my pack. I have accepted that losing hair ties is just a way of life, so I like to stay stocked.

8. Mini Stain Remover

How many times have I dripped coffee or tea on myself and had to walk around all day resembling a 3-year-old? Hmm…too many. Learn from my mistakes and carry a Tide pen with you. Even if you don’t need it, believe me, one of your close friends will. Small stains are inevitable during a busy day, and have a reputation of ruining the cutest outfit.

9. Safety Pins

Another tool for outfit mishaps! You never know when the strap to your tank might finally come loose or the button on your sundress might give way to the extra 10  pounds you gained during freshman year. Better safe than sorry!

10. Advil, Tampons, and Pads

Your TOM (time of the month) always seems to come at the perfect time—NOT. Every woman’s worst nightmare is being stuck anywhere without the necessary precautions when TOM comes for a visit. Plus, cramps are the worst distraction in the world. Whether it is, Advil, Midol, or Ibuprofen, make sure you are not stuck in class while in pain. It’s just the worst.

11. Nail Clipper

For those awful hangnails!

You can build your own minimergency kit, or Sephora has a few options that you can buy. They are also great gifts or stocking stuffers for the holidays. Good luck!

Published in MW University
Friday, 08 March 2013 21:45

Beauty | Best Drugstore Makeup Brands

Beauty // March 11, 2013

Have you ever thought of how much money you could save if your favorite foundation didn’t cost 60 dollars? As a beauty blogger who isn’t swimming in dough right now, I thought about it all of the time. This is why I made it my makeup mission to find products that I love at the drugstore. I still can’t give up some of my pricey makeup must haves, but now I limit myself to buying a few expensive items and spend the extra money on a slew of other fabulous things at reasonable prices! Here are some of my favorite drugstore beauty finds.

Revlon Creme lipstick

The colors of these lipsticks are so vibrant and fun! The matte colors look so chic and the 8 dollar price tag makes it easy to experiment with a bolder colors than you are used to.  My go-to colors are Persian Melon, Orange Flip and Certainly Red.

Maybelline Dream Liquid Mousse foundation

I have tried numerous foundations in all different price ranges, but I always end up coming back to this one. It has a light coverage that goes on smoothly and blends into your skin for perfect application. It’s also the only product that I found that really matches my skin color. 

Tip: I have found that Rite Aid stocks the most shades so head there if it’s your first time searching!

Maybelline Falsies Mascara

My favorite mascara is Tarte Lights Camera Lashes, but when I don’t have the extra 20 bucks to spare, I love Falsies by Maybelline.  It doesn’t clump and it’s one of the only non-waterproof mascaras I buy that doesn’t smudge under my eyes. I apply multiple layers throughout the day and my lashes always look long and full, never dry and cakey.

Maybelline Eye Shadow Duos

I have a couple of these shadows and they make doing everyday makeup effortless, plus the easy application will save you time in the morning. The color goes on great, and the color pairs work so well together you really can’t fail. My go to day color is the duo in Dusk.

Essie Nail polish

Essie is by far my favorite brand of polish. It comes in tons of colors and they always live up to the shade you see in the bottle. I have about 20 myself and even make it a point to bring my own when getting a pedicure!

NYC Lip liner Pencils

I am just starting to get into using lip liner. I always thought I would end up with a weird unnatural line around my lips and didn’t know that I could use the liner as a lip color itself. I now use NYC liners to create awesome matte colors on my lips that last for HOURS and never look fake. It also makes it easier to give my husband a kiss without smearing pink all over his lips!

Published in Beauty
Tuesday, 08 November 2011 10:57

Beauty | Made's Must Haves

Beauty // November 8, 2011

Winter has finally decided to arrive in LA (this week at least) and she brings with her much excitement. Can you say “holiday parties??” But with the change in weather comes a much needed change in your stock of beauty supplies. Yes, it's time to retire your summer suntan lotion and stock up on goodies that will keep you looking fresh and fabulous this holiday season.

Skin Care

Have your knee caps and hands become victims of that change in season ashiness? Shortage of moisture in the air during winter months can dry out your skin, which is why the most important thing you need in your beauty regimen right now is...moisturizer. I love Aveeno'’s Positively Radiant Daily Moisturizer ($15.99) because it’'s lightweight but keeps my skin feeling soft and hydrated all day. It also comes with a SPF of 15 or 30 and is available with a tint. For all over body care I love Jergens Shea Butter Deep Conditioning Moisturizer ($7.49). These are both products you can purchase at any drugstore or mega, uber Target. #Tooeasy.

If you aren't doing a mask at home once a week you're doing your face a disservice. Try out Aveda's Tourmaline Charged Radiance Mask ($31). It's gentle but deep exfoliation removes dead skin and minimizes pores. This mask is great for adding a glow to your skin when winter weather makes skin look dull.

Make Up

Your color palette may be a bit more muted in the winter but your make up doesn't have to be. Dior's Diorshow mascara ($24.50) can give your lashes a "ready for the runway" look. It adds volume, length and those who have tried it swear by it. Go ahead and throw this one in the bag.

Another tool you'll need is the perfect pencil. I like Lancome's Le Crayon Khol Waterproof Eyeliner with a smudger ($24.50). It glides on smoothly and the smudger tool helps create a sexy smokey eye.

Hair Care

Just like your skin, your hair can get dull and dry during the winter months. If that's the case for you, first off, drink more water. Secondly, add a shine serum to your hair care treatments. I just discovered these and they do so much to help my hair look healthier while protecting it from heat.  I like Joico's K-Pak Protect and Shine Serum because it adds shine and moisture without my weighing hair down.

Adjusting your beauty supplies to suit the season is a must! It's also good to check the expiration dates on your make up and throw out anything old. Taking time out to update your supplies makes staying fresh and fly that much easier.

Published in Beauty