Monday, 24 February 2014

My Chat With Adam Burrell | Exclusive Interview

In today's post I am going to share with you an interview I conducted with the ever so talented Adam Burrell.

If you don't know Adam, then trust me you will most certainly have seen his beauty creations. He is a British born make-up artist that has worked with everyone from Sarah Harding and Katie Price to JLS and One Direction. But who he is most famous for making up is the gorgeous girls from Little Mix. As not only does he work with the group on music videos, but also for their red carpet events and personal appearances.

I have to admit, I admire a lot of make-up artists, as beauty is one of my biggest loves in life. However, Adam is definitely at the top of my list! Mainly because his effortless make-up magic is not only beautiful, but also unique. He has the natural gift and talent to turn a normal pretty girl into a Hollywood starlet, by the way he plays and accentuates a face.

Keep reading to find out Adams top tips, must-have products and best beauty secrets...

At what age did your fascination with beauty begin?
Thanks to films like Mrs Doubtfire and The Witches and TV shows like Stars in Their Eyes I developed quite an obsession with masks and make-up from a very young age. I had an impressive collection of face paints and wigs and I'd want to transform anyone who'd let me.

How did you get your first big break?

I think with make-up it's more about lots of little breaks and keeping those little breaks coming and gradually those little breaks then get bigger. You don't just do one great job and become some big shot and never have to hustle again. When I first moved to London I assisted Liz Martins, who was Girls Aloud's make-up artist, for the whole duration of my degree. Working with Liz and Girls Aloud was the first time I'd been around anything like that before and it was all very exciting and eye opening and it really set me off in the right direction. I'll always be grateful to Liz for giving me that chance.

Which elements of your job do you enjoy the most (shows, shoots, music videos or daily work with clients)?
I've always found watching music videos really exciting and inspiring, so I look forward to those most of all now. They are probably the hardest and most gruelling of make-up jobs, because the hours are super long, they can be in the most uncomfortable of locations and there's a lot of pressure, but the day a video comes out that I've worked on makes it all worth while.

Describe your day-to-day life in three words?
Exciting, diverse and fulfilling.

Can you give any advice to aspiring make-up artists wanting to emulate a career like yours?
First I'd say run your own race. By all means be inspired by others, but don't try to emulate, measure your successes or compare yourself to other creatives out there, just try to outdo yourself. With that approach you'll feel a lot happier and find your journey more fulfilling, because it is quite a journey. Aside from that you've got to just live and breathe it. Competition is tough, so you need to be the best you can possibly be and that means getting as much practice as you can. Take in all things make-up related like a sponge from books, magazines, the Internet and anywhere else. Be nice to people and work hard!

Who or what inspires you?
Everything. Most of the time I find it hard to turn the make-up part of my brain off. I love looking at what's been considered beautiful throughout history in fashion, music and film from all eras. You can learn so much by looking at how the old Hollywood actresses and icons wore their make-up, they knew exactly what worked and many of their looks have become timeless, go-to make-up looks for all of the starlets that followed. But in the moment it's the women in my chair that inspires me.

Can you list the key products you always have in your kit?
Lots of products come and go, but the ones that have been trusty kit companions are Barry M's Gel Liners, Cover FX Camouflage Concealer, Muji Fine Stem Cotton Buds, Barry M Lash Vegas Mascara and Liz Martins Select Individual Lashes.

What is the one piece of beauty advice you swear by and suggest all women follow?
Always use a good under eye concealer! A lot of people use one shade of foundation all over their face so they're all one colour and it looks flat, but adding an under eye concealer one or two shades lighter adds another dimension and makes you look so much more awake, polished and flawless. I love the correctors and concealers from Bobbi Bown.

Airbrushing in magazines is a highly controversial topic, what are your thoughts and opinions on it?
Everyone knows about it, so there's no reason for anyone to look at the overly enhanced models and celebrities on billboards and in magazines and think things like "Why isn't my skin as flawless?" or "Why isn't my body as long and lean?" Just enjoy the beautiful images. As a make-up artist it makes me work extra hard, because I want my work to look beautiful, seamless and precise in real life and not just after the retoucher has been at it.

You often work with the pop group Little Mix, how would you describe their go-to looks?
We change up their go-to looks daily, so they never get too complacent because they love trying out new things and playing around with make-up. But as long as Perrie has her strong brows, Jade has her winged eyeliner, Leigh-Anne has a flawless, sculpted base and Jesy has her eyes lined and defined then they're happy.

What are the girls favourite beauty products?
If I had to make a Little Mix make-up survival kit, it'd have to include Lancôme Gelateis Douceur, NARS Sheer Glow Foundation, Tom Ford Illuminating Highlight Pen, HD Brows Palette, Bobbi Brown Long Wear Cream Shadow, IMAN Bronzing Powder, Velour Lashes, NARS Body Glow and MAC Face and Body Foundation.

Is there a celebrity you would still like to work with?

At the top of my list would be Christina Aguilera, because she's always been my favourite superstar or Katy Perry because she looks like she loves make-up and playing around with different looks.

What are your top tips and must-have products for achieving flawless skin?
Aside from plenty of sleep, lots of water and a good diet, it's all about working with and enhancing all of the different tones and textures of the face. Even out your skin using your favourite foundation, Armani Luminous Silk and Barry M's Flawless Matte Foundation are some of my current faves, as they both have buildable coverage and give a natural satin sheen. Also hide any darkness under the eyes using a good concealer like MAC's Prep + Prime Highlighter. For foundation and concealer I always like to buff using fluffy synthetic brushes, I really love the ones by Samantha Chapman for Real Techniques.

Contouring and highlighting is a huge make-up trend this year, can you give any advice on achieving it at home?

Once you've set your base and concealer with a little powder, you can go in and enhance the contours of the face. Use a bronzer like Barry M's Natural Dazzle Bronzer to add definition and a sun kissed glow. Always applying to the areas where the sun would naturally hit your face, like your forehead, nose, cheeks and chin. For contouring cheekbones I like to use a product that is matte and not too red, so that you can convincingly create the illusion of a natural contour. Kevyn Aucoin's Medium Sculpting Powder is a great contour for light to medium skin tones or MAC's Blush in Shadowy for darker skin. Just remember to buff and blend so that it's all seamless. When it comes to sheen and highlight, I like to let the skin glow naturally in those areas by just avoiding powder there, it looks cleaner and fresher than adding a shimmery product.

Lastly, whats next for Adam Burrell?

Who knows? That's the excitement of this job! There are so many twists, turns and surprises in the road that it's impossible to say, but as long as I'm waking up every day to make a living by putting make-up on people then I'll be happy, because frankly I can't do anything else.

Finally, I would just like to say a huge thank you to Adam! Not only is he a fantastic make-up artist (and his work speaks for itself), but he is a genuinely lovely person. I found it fascinating finding out his top tips and favourite products and I will most certainly be picking up some new beauty buys (if I'm honest, I'm going to work my way through the long list haha) thanks to his superb recommendations.

If you don't already, be sure to follow Adam on both Twitter and Instagram @AdamBurrell and also check out his website to see his full portfolio

Also let me know which Little Mix members make-up you like the most? Mine has to be Jesy, as her eyes always look gorgeous (thanks to Mr Burrell of course). They have the right contrast of sultry and smokey, yet lined and defined - which to me is perfect!

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Sunday, 23 February 2014

DIY: Lemon and Sugar Face/Body Scrub

In today's post I am going to share with you a quick DIY face and body scrub that can be made at home in a matter of minutes!

I am personally a huge fan of at home recipes, as one they save you lots of money and two you get to use up some of the ingredients already lying around in your kitchen. But to be honest, another big benefit from making your own concoctions, is that you know exactly what you are using. You can make it as natural and as pure as you want and whats even better is that you can choose how much or how little of something you want to use.

Keep reading to find out about the best secret skincare saviour...

The importance
It is important to exfoliate your skin regularly, as it allows you to remove dead skin cells. By removing the unwanted impurities, your skin will soon be glowing and refreshed again.
This scrub will not only tighten your pores and even out your skin tone, but it will also help heal and aid scaring.
Top tip: Exfoliate your face and body once or twice a week, depending on your skin type and texture.

Ingredients and products you will need
1/2 fresh lemon
1/2 cup of granulated sugar
2 tablespoons of honey
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1/4 teaspoon of sea salt
1 jar or tupperware box/bowl with a sealable lid
A manual or electric whisk

Firstly begin by adding the lemon juice and olive oil into your container until they have mixed and blended well. Once done, slowly add in your honey (try and use organic if possible, as it will be natural and fresher) and then whisk the ingredients in the same pot. After a few minutes check to see whether they have started to bind together. If they have, they will be a medium to thick consistency. Next add in the sugar (the amount you add is down to personal preference, but 1/2 cup is usually sufficient) and then mix again. Finally, add in a pinch of sea salt to add texture and grit to your scrub. Then that's it, you're done - you have officially made your own face and body scrub at home, in under five minutes!
Top tip: For a deep down scrub, simply add in some more sugar. This is great for people with oily or combination skin, as the granules will help clean and clear your pores. If however you have sensitive skin, add a few more drops of olive oil, as it will help dilute the solution, making it kinder and softer on your skin.

When using this sweet scented scrub for either your face or body, apply it onto damp skin and then massage it in circular motions. Once done, rinse off with a warm muslin cloth to help remove any dirt, impurities or excess make-up.
Top tip: If you have any of your scrub leftover, store it in your fridge and use it within one week.

Lastly, this scrub is great for acne prone skin, as the ingredients will help decongest blocked pores. However, be careful to not over-exfoliate, as that can have the opposite effect. Remember your skin is your largest organ, so be careful with it and treat it delicately!

Please let me know if you try this scrub and also tell me your results!

Happy Scrubbing!

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Wednesday, 12 February 2014

The Story Of My Life TAG

In today's post I am going to do The Story Of My Life TAG! I have actually seen
lots of videos on YouTube on it, but I haven't yet seen any blog posts, so I thought I should be the first and share my funny and weird stories with you all haha. Enjoy!

When and where was your birth?
I was born on the 17th July 1989 in Richmond, London.

Who chose your name(s) and was there a reason?
My mum and dad were actually going to call me Charlotte right up until my birth and then they decided on Sarah. My middle name Louise was chosen by my nan, as she had always liked that name. Secretly I have always wished my name was Scarlett, but I guess you win some and lose some, right? Haha!

Earliest childhood memory?
This ones hard, as I have a few all from around the same time. But it would probably be when me, my mum and dad would have a daily walk by the Thames. Our house looked directly over the river, so a walk each evening there was probably pointless - as we saw it so often LOL, but it was so relaxing and peaceful.

What were your hobbies as a child?
I have had so many! From private swimming lessons to ballet and acting classes - I have literally done it all. At one point this was my weekly itinerary: Monday was netball, Tuesday was Italian lessons, Wednesday was basketball, followed by Brownies, Thursday was netball again, Friday was guitar practice, followed by a dance class and Saturday was music lessons. So, yep, you name it - I've done it LOL! My parents always encouraged me to take on extra activities, as it helps you learn and grow as an individual and I honestly couldn't agree more. My only hobby now is shopping, which is a shame, as they are a great way to meet new people and have fun, whilst exploring new ventures.

Do you have any siblings?
I do indeed. I have three sisters and one brother. I'm the youngest though ;-)

A funny story of something you did or said as a child?
Probably the most embarrassing moment (of my life) was when I was about 8 or 9 out with my mum shopping. We were casually browsing the aisles when Mousse T - Horny started playing. If you don't know it, please listen to it on YouTube. The lyrics go "I'm horny, horny, horny, horny" etc and guess what I did? Started singing it out loud, and when I say loud, I mean at the top of my voice (Beyonce eat your heart out) haha. I obviously didn't know what horny meant at the time, but people started looking and laughing because a little girl was singing inappropriate lyrics LOL. My mum panicked and said "no Sarah, its honey, honey, honey", to try and make me sing something a bit nicer, but I stuck with it. Me and my mum still laugh about it to this day. Its definitely a cringe worthy moment that I will always remember!

Did you do well at school?
Yeah I did. I will confess I was a total geek at school LOL. I wasn't rebellious one bit! I love learning and I enjoyed school (even though I'm sure many others didn't). The only negative I could say, is that schools shouldn't put children under so much pressure. Even if you don't or didn't do well at school, its not the end of the world. You can always retake a class or go onto college and study something you enjoy. All I would say is never give up and just because you might not like a certain subject, don't give up on learning altogether.

First teenage celebrity crush?
I'm not sure which one was first, but my three favourites from when I was young was Ben Adams from the group called A1, Gareth Gates and also Lee Ryan from Blue.

Favourite song(s) of all time?
My all-time favourite song has to be You Are Not Alone by Michael Jackson. I love it that much that it makes me cry nearly every time I hear it LOL. I'm not sure why it makes me emotional, but its the only song that has ever made me teary.

Favourite moment or memory of your life so far?
I have a few. My first was getting my little cat called Pepsi when I was young, my second was graduating university and my third was getting my dogs Bentley and Lily. We actually nickname them Bentley Boo and Lily Lou or Camilla and Charles haha. I know its totally random, but me and my mum nick named them Millie and Charlie as they are literally like a couple (the same as the royals). Plus they really do suit them names. Nice little fact sharing moment there LOL.

Have you fulfilled any of your dreams yet?
One of my main dreams was to graduate university with a First Class Honours degree and I am so happy that I can say I have achieved that. I worked so hard for it, that its nice to now know I can say I accomplished that.

What are your ambitions for the future?
My main ambition is to launch my first business this year. Again I have been working really hard doing all of the preparation work for it, that it will be nice to finally share it with everyone. I would also then like to grow and run several businesses and eventually move to Los Angeles with my companies. (I'm not asking for much am I? Haha). I would say my main aim and goal though is to be happy. Life is so short and I want to just enjoy each moment and have a fantastic life, that when I'm 80 sat at home I can look back and be proud of everything I have done and achieved.
So there we have it, my 12 slightly embarrassing moments and memories. I really hope you enjoyed reading this and finding out a little more about me.

Lastly, I tag everyone reading this. If you do a post or video on it, please leave a comment with the link, as I would love to know your answers!

(The image of Richmond was kindly provided by photographer John Frye)
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Monday, 10 February 2014

My Chat With Kirsty Heslewood | Exclusive Interview

In today's post I am going to share with you an interview I conducted with the beautiful Kirsty Heslewood.

If you don't know who Kirsty is, then you will be pleased to find out that she is not only Miss England, but also Miss United Kingdom. And whats even better, is that Kirsty shares with us her top tips, fitness routine and also her best budget buys.

Keep reading to release your inner beauty queen...

At what age did you get into modelling?

At 17 I was scouted in Selfridges in London and then signed to Oxygen Model Management.

What has been the biggest perk of your job so far?

Getting to meet such amazing people, animals and also going to some of the most beautiful places in the world.

Has your career changed your perception of beauty?
I think it's made me realise that no matter how attractive someone is on the outside, if they have an ugly personality it automatically makes them unattractive. Beauty really is from within.

What advice would you give to other girls wanting to get into the industry?
I would say believe in yourself, don't let anyone put you down and enjoy life to the fullest! You get a lot of knock-backs in this industry, but you have to be confident in yourself and keep striving to reach your goals. It's hard and takes time, but you can make anything happen.

What opportunities have you had since winning the titles of Miss England and Miss United Kingdom?

I have been lucky enough to go to some amazing countries such as Bali and Mauritius. I've also been able to meet some very inspirational people, who make me want to strive to do good things for others. I've also been able to go to some great events and mingle in with a lot of stars.

What beauty preparation did you do before the competitions?

Obviously you want to eat well and get in the best possible shape, however it's your confidence that really shines through. I generally try to eat plenty of fruit and vegetables and also drink lots of water.

Which products could you not live without and why?

I have to have mascara! I'm so fair skinned, I feel I literally have no eyes without mascara. I love all of the ones by L'Oreal and a few by Lancôme.

What is your best budget buy?
I use the Boots Tea Tree and Witch Hazel skincare range. It's reasonably prized and also does wonders to my skin. I seriously couldn't recommend it more.

How long does it to take you to get ready and what does your routine consist of?

I'm quite quick at getting ready, which is good. I don't like to plaster on make-up, I always think the more natural the better. I tend to apply some foundation or a good BB cream, a touch of mascara, and some pale pink lipstick. I then put volume mousse in my hair and always blow dry it with a round brush (typical beauty queen hair) and overall this takes me about 40 minutes. To be honest it really depends how much of a rush I'm in - which is generally most of the time.

What are your top beauty tips?

Drink lots of water! It has so many advantages to your overall health and your skin can dramatically improve from drinking more of it. Also always try and get lots of sleep. I personally don't sleep enough, as I'm always up playing on my phone late at night, but it really makes a difference if I get a good sleep (It keeps you looking younger too). Remember to be gentle on your skin and hair as well. I see so many girls rubbing their faces so hard and pulling and burning their hair. Dab your skin gently on your face, especially the delicate skin under your eyes. Also always use a comb on damp or wet hair, as constant brushing can stretch the hair and make it break. And last but not least, remember to use a heat protecter when styling, as it can help keep your hair healthier and prevent the dreaded damage.

Describe your health and fitness regime?

I start the day off with hot water and a slice of lemon. It cleanses you from the inside, removes toxins, speeds up metabolism and improves your skin. I then eat three healthy meals a day including lots of fruit, vegetables and protein. I try to workout 3-4 times a week too. At the moment I'm training for the marathon so I'm doing lots of exercise. I always do cardio one day, followed by toning and strengthening exercises on the other days. I use the Slendertone range to help as well, as that really helps strengthen my core and tones my stomach.

How do you maintain your figure?

I don't over indulge in bad food. I allow myself the odd chocolate bar or packet of crisps, but I don't go crazy. I also like to exercise regularly because it makes me feel good and it keeps me in shape.

Which is your most-loved high street shop?
It would probably have to be Zara. I love how smart the clothes are and they aren't too expensive as well. I also love the smart sophisticated look, like Kate Middleton's style.

What is your favourite fashion find?

Probably my husky faux fur coat from Faux UK. It's the most comfortable, snuggly, warm coat I've owned and I always get complimented on it.

Lastly, whats next for Kirsty Heslewood?

I have a few things to look forward to, but we will just have to wait and see where my little life path takes me LOL.

A big thanks to Kirsty for taking the time out to conduct this interview with me and for also sharing her most-loved products, shops and health tips.

If you want to stay up-to-date with her latest modelling ventures (and I'm pretty sure you do) follow her on Twitter @KirstyRosex

Finally girls, let me know what you think of beauty pageants and also what preparations you do before a big night out?

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Monday, 3 February 2014

My Chat With Tim Quinn | Exclusive Interview

In today's post I am going to share with you an interview I conducted with make-up master Tim Quinn. 

Tim began working with Giorgio Armani Beauty back in 2001, when the line was first launched in the States. Since then he has gone onto become the top Celebrity Face Designer and Director of Creative Artistry for the brand. He now spends his time glamming up countless Hollywood A-listers and also helping cancer patients restore their inner and outer beauty by sharing with them his beauty secrets.

I had the pleasure of finding out Tim's top tips, most-loved products and also his favourite client collaboration. So keep reading to discover more...

At what age did your fascination with beauty begin?
I have been fascinated with beauty since I was a young child, as I was always captivated by the lotions and potions my Mom and her friends would use to transform themselves. Although I chose to study economics in college, I actually didn't start to work in the beauty world until after first working in finance.

When was your big industry break?

My first big break came from being in the right place at the right time with the attitude that I could do anything (even if I wasn't sure what I was doing). I had actually never studied make-up until a friend in Boston, John Dupuis, brought me into the make-up world and then I eventually went to Milan to SuperStudios.

How did you begin working with Giorgio Armani?
I was recruited in New York when Giorgio Armani Beauty was launching all the way back in 2001. The general manager at the time promised to make me a star, so how could i decline that offer? We are actually still friends to this day, although Serge Jureidini has now moved onto a new company.

What is the best part about your job?
I love the "possibilities" that my job offers. I get to work with some of the most amazing, talented, creative and kind people in the industry. Plus as a bonus, I am honoured to work with cancer patients across the United States, helping them find a way to maintain a sense of self while undergoing life-changing treatments.

Who or what inspires you?
I am actually inspired by the diverse women I have the privilege to work with everyday. The power of make-up is incredible and it can help create such a transformation, which allows for each persons inner beauty to shine forth.

If you could only have 5 make-up items in your professional kit, what would they be and why?
Armani Luminous Silk Foundation - this stuff is one of the best on the market! Its weightless, buildable coverage gives a look that just naturally glows. I would also have a black waterproof eye pencil, as you can do everything with a great liner - such as a cat eye, smokey eye, barely-there lash line etc. A good eyebrow pencil, as without brows, the look is just not complete. A soft rose gold blush, whether it be liquid, cream or powder (it is one of the most flattering colours for most skin tones). And lastly I would have the Armani Crema Nera Reviving Eye Cream, as for me its more than just an eye cream, its my secret weapon to instantly adding a refreshed look to anyone's make-up throughout the day. I simply just tap it along the tip of the cheekbones to add a quick fix.

Out of all of your years experience, what would you say is your favourite beauty tip?
When a friend introduced me to the Clarisonic face brush for cleansing, my life and beauty routine was improved dramatically for the better. I actually advise all of my clients to use it regularly, as its a genius product - which truly gives you radiant skin.

What is your all-time hero Giorgio Armani product?
It has to be Luminous Silk Foundation, hands down. LSF gives the most glorious non-makeup look - the effect is glowing luminous skin and it comes in 24 shades so virtually anyone can find their perfect tone. I love it as it can be layered for coverage as needed throughout the day and it never looks "made-up".

Which basic beauty items must every woman own?

Pretty much all of the five items mentioned in question 6, plus a serum. I'm also obsessed with the Beauty Blender (the egg shaped sponge) as its so terrific for blending. And lastly, I'm a huge fan of Tammy Fender's Spontaneous Recovery Creme, as its perfect for post-flight or after having a late night.

What would you say is the biggest beauty faux pas?
I would have to say trying to follow trends too literally. I personally always advise clients to get inspired and then figure a way to adapt the look for their specific face - that's what I always work with them on.

You were working at this years Golden Globes, whose make-up did you work on?

I can't talk about specific people, but our make-up look was a big part of the overall return to glowing skin at the Globes and also moving forward into the season.

How would you describe the make-up look you channeled for the event? And what advice would you give to ladies recreating it at home?
Well luminous skin is the key to the look this season, so keep the rest of your make-up minimal! Also a great pop of colour on the lips is so modern and fresh as well. I personally created a glowing slightly metallic toned eye using the Armani Eyes To Kill Intense shadow in #28, with lots of black waterproof liner - smudged along the top lashes and then layers of Eyes To Kill mascara. For the complexion, I used a wash of Luminous Silk Foundation in shade 5.5 blended with Fluid Sheer 10 to add more radiance. Lastly, I used Fluid Sheer 11, in the rose gold tone to subtly accent the cheeks, and finished the look with Rouge Ecstasy #202 lipstick for a subdued, glowing glamorous look.

You have worked with countless celebrities, but which collaboration has been your favourite to create?
I've worked with actresses ranging from Uma Thurman to Kerry Washington and Glenn Close. I loved the look on Uma for the Oscar Night Vanity Fair event a few years back - I gave her effortless glowing skin with just a pop of color on her cheeks and lips, the key was using the Armani Light Master Primer under her makeup to give a slightly ethereal glow from within.
Which make-up trend do you think will be a huge hit this year?
Well I have seen a lot of high impact looks hitting the awards, such as metallic make-up, which is great. Also there is always a lot of glowing skin and pops of color for the lips, which I find always looks so chic.

Lastly, whats next for Tim Quinn?
Well as the Oscars are just around the corner, I will be quite caught up for the next month or so. I will also always continue to work with women fighting their cancer battles, by helping to improve their self-esteem.

I just want to take the time out to say a huge thank you once again to Tim Quinn for conducting this interview with me! I literally couldn't wait to share his knowledge and expertise with you guys, as his beauty insight is incredible - well, his long list of celebrity clientele speaks for itself LOL.

Lastly, to all of my fellow Twitter lovers out there, be sure to follow him @TimQuinnBeauty

Also let me know what your favourite Giorgio Armani products are? Mine has to be the amazing Luminous Silk Foundation and also the matching powder, as they are literally to die for!
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