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
Tuesday, 08 November 2011 09:03

Made Music | Made Woman's Most Wanted

November 8, 2011

They came, they sang (or rapped), they won our hearts. They broke through barriers, and--in some cases--changed music as we knew it. Then they....disappeared? WTF. They’re now on the list of Made Woman’s Most Wanted, and here’s why:

Andre 3000 

Andre Benjamin, 3 Stacks, Cupid Valentino, Ice Cold.....whatever you choose to call Andre 3000, one fact remains: he’s one talented brother. Anyone who could have a part of Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik (1994)--which arguably laid the foundation of southern hip hop as we know it--and go on to make the more commercially palatable, yet equally genius The Love Below (2003) has forever earned a place in my heart. What I don’t love, however, is the fact that we’re now forced to experience samplings of his genius through random verses on pop songs. Get your money, 3k, I get it. The industry has changed, and I’m sure being the sole feature on albums like Beyonce’s 4 isn’t hurting your pocketbooks. But please, for the sake of all that is fair in this world, come back! While it’s cool to see you on the big screen in movies like Idlewild or Four Brothers, what we really want from you is music. I hear whisperings that we may get an Andre 3000 album as early as 2012, with an Outkast LP to follow, and I am waiting with bated breath. For now, I reminisce with some throwbacks: Behold a Lady, Jazzy Belle, Spottieottiedopaliscious.

Gwen Stefani

As someone who grew up on a fair helping of soul, R&B and hip hop, Gwen Stefani  (as part of her band, No Doubt) single-handedly made alternative music cool in my life. What other chick could rock out like her and steal the spotlight from 5 plus dudes? Don’t Speak became the break up anthem of all anthems. And the fact that she made a song telling off the man she just broke up with and had the poor shmuck play the bass on the track was pretty damn bossy if you ask me.  She’s since gone on to build a highly successful solo career, a fashion empire in L.A.M.B. and pretty much transformed herself into a cultural icon.  We haven’t had a solo project from her since 2006’s The Sweet Escape, when family matters began to take precedence--she’s had two children with husband Gavin Rossdale (one in 2006 and one in 2008). But while she did go back on tour with No Doubt in 2009, she confirmed earlier this year that she will not be continuing her solo career, much to our dismay. But who knows, maybe she’ll have a change of heart? While we’re not holding our breath, we can still rock to her upcoming No Doubt album, and of course her past hits: It’s My Life, Hella Good, Luxurious.


Oh, D’Angelo. Oh, D’Angelo’s abs (and more). Let’s take a moment of silence. *sigh*


Man. I could stop there, but I won’t. In addition to having a body that rivaled the fine specimens of the movie 300, the man could SANG. And write. And make (marijuana induced) 10 minute jam sessions into classic album-worthy tracks. Don’t believe me? I’m gonna need you to revisit VooDoo. His career: Brown Sugar, Untitled (How Does it Feel), Africa.....the list of classics goes on and on. It seems like the rock star lifestyle got the best of him, though; he’s had legal issues throughout the 2000s (soliciting a prostitute--ew, possession of an illegal substance, etc.), which I’m sure have contributed to his absence from the music scene. There were rumors that he was back in the studio last year, with an album slated for sometime this year--but it’s hard to be sure. So I’ll just say this: D, for the sake of women everywhere, please get your personal life right, hit some crunches and get back in that studio!

Justin Timberlake

Justin, Justin, Justin... He’s had a PSA dedicated to urging him to “make music again,” but it’s looking like Mr. Timberlake will continue to keep us on the edge of our (movie) seats. Sure, we’ll watch him take a turn in acting with movies like Social Network, In Time, or Bad Teacher--okay, maybe not Bad Teacher--but we really just want to watch him sing and dance around while subtly seducing us with his white boy swagger. Is that so wrong? We’ve all but forgotten the fact that he used to cuddle with his male band mates, and that he’s probably the one that sent Britney into her downward spiral. What more does he want from us? I say we stage a boycott until he’s forced to give in. But first, some selections for your listening pleasure: LoveStoned/I Think She Knows, What Goes Around...Come Around.


Mya came on the scene in the late ‘90s with a girl next door demeanor (with some sass) that caused girls everywhere to relate--and guys everywhere to swoon. The singer/songwriter’s crisp, smooth vocals and natural beauty catapulted her to stardom, earning her a Grammy and a spot in the critically-acclaimed blockbuster, Chicago. It sounds like issues with her label may have (at least partially) caused her lengthy break from the music scene. Whatever the reason, mixtapes aren’t gonna cut it, Mya! I’m so ready for her to embrace her grown woman and bless us once again with those one-of-a-kind vocals. Some of my personal faves: Best of Me Remix, Movin’ On, It’s All About Me

So who'd I miss? Let me know in the comments!

Published in Entertainment