Tag Archives: makeup

The Glamorous (ish) Life of an MUA!

Being an Makeup artist (MUA) is one of 3 things. You are either sat around killing time, busy busy can’t stop superhero stylist or spending the money you haven’t made yet from the client you haven’t even met yet!

Its Saturday. 6am alarm, I’m out of the house by 6:45 and with the bridal party by 7:45.

Before noon I will have done one big bouncy blow-dry and makeup for mum of the bride, one intricate updo and makeup for the bride and for the maid of honour, makeup with a half up half down on what can only be described as a fabulous lion’s mane!

I will be offered a bacon butty but will resist its deliciousness to avoid ‘butty fingers’! No stopping, sitting or breaks beyond a sip of coffee and small glass of water. The thing about a wedding morning is it is great fun but as the MUA you simply don’t stop.

I finish working on my wedding party at 11:50am and exit stage left straight away so the ladies can set off to the ceremony. Hmmmm, what to do now? I have another client this afternoon at 3:30 for a special occasion hair and makeup. Should I drive for an hour to get home and leave and hour later and then drive for an hour again? Think of the environment!

Three and half hours to kill, hmmmm what to do, what to do? I know, I’ll grab a spot of lunch! There is a Zizzi’s not far from my next client, I feel a discount voucher coming on!

It is now 1:15pm, for an hour and a quarter I have been sat in my car, in traffic, because it took an hour and a quarter to drive the 8 miles from Epsom to Esher! I have traffic knee now. I’m also a little sweaty due to the lack of climate control in my 11-year-old Ford Focus. I could murder a Porcini Tortellini!

Finally fed and over an hour to kill… This sofa seat they gave me is really comfy, I could totally lie down and have a nap. Would that be socially unacceptable?

Could I have a pudding? I’ve already put weight back on that I lost before our family holiday in February. And we are out for dinner with friends tonight. Nope, no pudding.

The shops on the high street look lovely, yeah that’s a credit card disaster waiting to happen!

I could write up my accounts and expenses for the month. Seems evil for a Saturday afternoon.

I could just drive around in the sunshine; I haven’t had much of a chance to wear my fabulous new Michael Kors Sunglasses I bought on holiday yet! Hmmmm, traffic, the environment, might end up sweaty again, already paid for the car park, waste of petrol. Yep definitely not going for a drive.

2:10pm. That’s it, I’m going window shopping! And by window shopping I’m going to show my other half exactly why I said making me the second card holder on his AMEX was a silly idea!

My life as an MUA: Glamorous? Sometimes. Tedious? Sometimes. Fabulous? Always!

Bobbi Brown Art Stick


Ahhh Bobbi! Bobbi you beautiful brilliant genius you! We must all bow down and give thanks for the Goddess of makeup that is Bobbi Brown!

Nearly a year ago during a stroll through my happy place (aka the makeup counters at House of Fraser) I stopped to grab a blusher I was low on at the Bobbi counter. I ended up having a jolly good chat with the counter girls (so unlike me!). They had literally, that morning, just got in the latest Bobbi newbie, The Art Stick, and were showing me the range. I was in heaven! Creamy velvety feel Matte lip crayons in gorgeous shades. With an 8-hour wear and non-drying formula thanks to the lovely shea butter it contains, this lip liner and lipstick in one seemed to be the perfect combo. Available in 14 shades which can be applied as a sheer wash or built up for full drama you even get a sharpener with every one! Brilliant!


Anyhoo, time ticked on and life got in the way, as usual. Several times whilst walking through my happy place I considered stopping at the Bobbi counter and treating myself but just couldn’t seem to justify another new lippie. Bearing in mind I have a strict rule that I would never put a product on a client that I haven’t tried on myself I knew at some point I would have to invest in an Art Stick. Especially as I was fairly certain it would be perfect for a lot of my brides!

Slight side-line and shameless self-promotion coming up. All my brides get their lipstick bought for them! It’s simply part of the package I offer, which also includes a trial and no I don’t charge extra! Sometimes I can mix several colours when creating the perfect lip colour for a bride (my makeup kit case is already massive/heavy. If I carried every lipstick the toy shops stocked I’d break my back!). So imagine I mix 3 lipsticks to get the exact colour and texture for my bride, then she has to go to a sea of makeup counters and try and replicate it. Somewhat daunting no? Even for regular makeup users! Seeing as it’s my job to know about these things surely the least I can do is go and get the perfect lip product for my bride and make her life a little easier? Well that’s exactly what I do! The lipstick is part of my Big Day touch up kit that all my brides receive. The kit also contains some translucent powder and a kabuki brush, a travel hairspray and spare hair pins as well as a pack of mints and a pack of tissues, all in a reusable makeup bag.

Anyhoo, Bobbi’s Art Sticks. On a recent girl’s weekend away in Edinburgh the lobster and I found ourselves, whilst shopping on George Street, staring straight at a Bobbi store. Well quite frankly it would have been rude of me not to pop in! I had a wander and a look around and decided I would buy a new lippie for that evening as we were gonna hit the town (and I had a new lip primer in my Birchbox to test). A lovely sales assistant (whose name I’ve forgotten, sorry) asked if I needed any help. After and during a jolly good chat, shocking, I purchased my very own Bobbi Art Stick in Cassis. A gorgeous deep plumy red with blue undertones.


It really did live up to expectations, it felt so lovely on my lips, not at all dry as matte products so often can and despite taking the sharpener out with me I needn’t have bothered. I reapplied after dinner and then again out of sheer vanity but it wasn’t totally necessary and I didn’t need to sharpener it once. It was so easy to apply with its creamy formula and pencil shape. Just as I suspected, I flipping love it!


Me and the girls out on the town in Edinburgh! I’m on the right wearing my Art Stick, the lobster is on the left and Carter and Kinloch in the middle.


RRP £21


Why I Love the Kardashians


Love them or loathe them you can’t deny that the Kardashian/Jenner clan have spearheaded several of the fashion and beauty trends over the last decade or so. Contouring (even though MUAs have known about it and been using it for donkeys) is credited to Kim Kardashian as becoming a mainstream makeup technique. FYI I’m so over contouring but more about that another day! The Kardashian/Jenners are a family who are always incredibly, if not always sensibly, dressed bunch with no hair out of place and makeup always perfect (Their army of MUAs and stylists should be congratulated). Kylie Jenner is now leading a revolution in the makeup industry with her products. She began with her converted lip kits and has now launched eyeshadow palettes, all of which have been incredibly well received by the industry. Kendall Jenner has truly become, through nothing but hard work, a supermodel, having walked for both Chanel (aka The Gods) and Victoria Secrets! She admits that her family have been the thing that got in her way and has suffered bullying backstage from other models because of her famous family, on the assumption that they put her where she is! In fact, when she initially was told she would be walking in the Victoria Secret show she banned her entire family from coming! Khloe Kardashian is a style and makeup guru having written books about wellbeing and totally transformed her body and mind set through determination and hard work. And quite frankly I’m not even sure where to start with the whirlwind that is Caitlyn Jenner! Keeping up with the Kardashians has been running for 10 years and is in its 13th season. It is unaltered guilty pleasure TV and the Lobster and I love it!


Now I completely understand the school of thought that says why should we pay attention to a family of vacuous, self-obsessed, egotistical trash who reap what they sow and are ‘famous for being famous’. They have chosen to live in the public eye and have invited the press into their lives therefore they have no right to complain about the paparazzi intrusion they receive. Well for me there are 2 points there. Firstly, I can’t help but feel that a lot of the negativity received by the Kardashians can be put down to sheer bloody ignorance and assumption (for my mind the 2 most unattractive characteristics in the human race). These days’ people are very quick to judge others and feel that to be their right. They will criticise and condemn often without having bothered to take the time to learn about what they are putting down. In this day and age there really is no excuse for not knowing what you’re talking about! Google it for goodness sake! Secondly just because a person has chosen to do a job or live a life that puts them in the public eye that doesn’t give anyone the right to chase them in cars, take their picture when they don’t wish, hang around their property and hurl abuse, sometimes physically as well. Need I mention Princess Diana?

So here’s the thing. The Kardashian/Jenners, believe it or not have worked incredibly hard to get where they are. They also work tirelessly for charities, the had a family clear out and yard sale giving all the proceeds to charity! Caitlyn Jenner has done so much since her transition to raise awareness for the LBGT community. Kim started as a stylist many years ago for the likes of Brandy and Lindsay Lohan before progressing to where she is today. The 3 sisters, Kourtney, Khloe and Kim started their boutique DASH in 2006. They now have stores in New York, Miami and LA and they are all still involved in everything that goes into their stores. Kris Jenner (The clan elder and christened by her children their Momager) has managed all her children’s careers from the start. They all have apps that they are constantly working with as well as multiple blogs and of course their constant social media presence!

For me though the bottom line is this, the Kardashian/Jenners are good people! They are hardworking, family oriented, kind and generous Christian folk. They never ignore fans. When one is having any problems they drop everything to be there for each other. They rushed to be at Lamar Odom’s beside in Las Vegas when he nearly died, despite the fact that he and Khloe were mid divorce and he had been unfaithful to her. In my business I work on the ethos that there is literally nothing I won’t do for my brides, I will bend over backwards and be their Bridal Fairy godmother. Because sometimes in life it simply isn’t about you, it is about doing and being there for others and the Kardashian/Jenners display this beautifully. Yes, they may be a bunch of drama queens and put a lot of focus on their appearance but there is so much more to them. Aren’t we all concerned about our appearance? Don’t we all have a diva strop or family tiff from time to time? Everyone, after all, is merely human!

Perhaps the world needs more people who are giving and caring? Perhaps if more people thought of their friends and family before themselves some of the worlds wrongs could be healed or even righted? As far as I’m concerned I’d take a family like the Kardashian/Jenners every time over a family like the Bushes, the Clintons or the Trumps. Added bonus to this lot? They look so much better!