Monday, 16 September 2013

3 dress dilemmas - sorted! For £5!!!!!!

Hello everyone! So a while ago I was contacted by and asked if I would like to write a gust post for them. I was thrilled at the opportunity because I'm always browsing their website for hidden gems and bargains!

Today they published my post on their blog and I would love you all to please check it out because I think it's a great post and I love the outfits I have chosen. <<<< click this link view the full post :)

Let me know if you find a good bargain on ;)

*this is not a sponsored post, I willing wrote this post because I like the website!

Follow me on twitter! @thatshot

Thursday, 5 September 2013

My new perfume storage!

Hello everyone!

So just over a week ago I stumbled across a little gem that I didn't know I needed...

I was casually looking around tkmax for a picture frame when I stumbled across this beauty!

Now for those of you who don't know, my room is very very themed... There's more Union Jack than you could care to cope with, crown wall paper, lots and lots of red etc. I didn't intend for this theme to happen it just did. So when I saw this old telephone box cabinet I fell in love. What's more it was a total bargain at only £34.99!!!! I had no idea what I was going to put in it till it hit me I wanted somewhere nice to store and display my perfumes and BOOM, it was born.

The only downside I have to say is that some taller perfumes with the big crazy bottles, Marc Jacobs scents I'm looking at you, do not always fit. However with bottles like that you want them out on display anyway!

It fits all my others in perfectly and I can't stop looking at it!

It makes choosing a scent in the morning so much more fun :)

Do you have perfume storage? Let me know!

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

How to become a makeup artist - My story

Hello everyone! I really do apologize for my blogging absence, but I promise you I will spend as much dedicated time as I can now on it because I really want it to become a part of what I do.

In my personal and working life there's always one question I get asked, emailed, txt, messaged about ALL the time and although its different for everyone I just keep ending up repeating myself which is why I wanted to write a detailed post to hopefully help all of you asking the same question.

'How did you get be a makeup artist?'

I worked my socks off and went from busting my guts for free to having my work in store windows across the country, but I'm still learning and it's still hard! I really do feel flattered when girls and guys who want to make it in the industry come to me for help and guidance but there is no right or wrong answer, and just because I get good clients and good jobs doesn't mean I've 'made it', this is such a tough industry that I'm still trying to gain a respected name for myself in, and in the grand scheme of things I'm still a very tiny fish in what seems like an infinitely deep pond! However I do have my foot in the door, and that's the biggest thing you need. So I'll share here my story and tips how to do the same.

Should I go to college/makeup school?
This is a good question, many great makeup artists have come from good schools such as aofm/greasepaint/jemma kidd, but these schools are VERY expensive and although good tuition, do not guarantee you success in an already highly competitive industry. Also, some of the best makeup artists are totally self taught! (this is the route I fell into) In fact,  my makeup idol Lan Nguyen, even sometimes teaches at AOFM and has had a large part in creating their infamous book 'makeup is art'.
College is an other option. I really feel this worth it only depending on your tutor, if you want to get into fashion and film makeup, research who the tutor is and if they are really going to benefit you. In my eyes qualifications don't speak as loud as your portfolio, and you get the best portfolio by working hard and lots of practice! Which leads me on to my next point.

Be prepared to work hard for FREE for a while!
At college I studied media production. I love everything media, I enjoyed filming videos, photography, music, radio etc, but I always seemed to excel at one thing. The styling and makeup of the photos/videos. Soon after realising I was asked by varies people on the course to provide makeup for their project. This slowly start to build my portfolio. When I decided that this was what I wanted to do, I offered my services to students and local photographers, where I could be creative, show my skills, and in return get images for my portfolio. Getting good images is what's going to sell your work when you start to charge for your service.

Other than practice and hard work this is THE single biggest thing that will get you the career you want. No one is going to hire you if they have no idea who you are. Make sure you post all of your work on social networking sites such as facebook and twitter. If the people you worked with also have an account, make sure they tag you in the work so other people can see its YOUR work, they may want or know someone who wants a makeup artist! In this industry you will get most of your clients from recommendations and recognition, so I can't stress this point enough!
There are also industry specific networking websites to post your work, such as model mayhem, purple port, pure storm, art is the cure and others. On these websites are creative people in the same field as you. There are casting calls to apply for, some collaborative and some paid opportunities. I suggest searching for local models and photographers who want to collaborate, this way you are building up your portfolio AND your contacts.

Always learning!
Make sure you are always up to date on the latest trends, techniques and products. I learnt so much of what I know by watching online tutorials, reading books and going to watch and speak to real makeup artists. Lots of makeup artists in the industry require assistants, find a makeup artist you like, send them an email with some examples of your work and ask if you could come and assist them on a shoot!

Building up a makeup kit
This at first is the most daunting thing. The way I built my kit was working 2 part time jobs whilst at college, the first Thursday of every month I went to the mac pro store in London and bought items from their new collections, the staff there are extremely knowledgeable and usually top artists working on big shoots and runways. Did you know Nic from pixiwoo used to work at the pro store? I met her several years ago and she was happy to share her tips with me! to buildup a makeup kit is very expensive but lots of brands do offer a pro discount to make it a little easier. I will probably so a separate post on building a makeup kit, what to get and kit essentials.

Getting started...
My first proper paid job came from a local studio a couple of years ago when a student hired the venue for a shoot in which I provided makeup. On of the studio photographers liked my work, hired me for a model agency test shoot the next week and it went from there! From that photographers recognition and people seeing my work online, I got contacts from him, and contacts from those contacts and you eventually build web of contacts and that's how people get to know you!
When you start to charge, I suggest doing this part time alongside your other job until you can survive from your freelance earnings, you will need to register as a business but that's as easy as phoning up hrmc and keeping track of your jobs! Keep your rates reasonable, top prices are paid to makeup artists who have been in the trade a long time with the clients to show for it. Look up local makeup artists in your area and charge just below them while you are starting out. The more in demand you are, the more you can charge. Its worth getting a website and business cards to help nework your work. Weddings bring in a decent amount of money! Try popping into some local florists and bridal shops to see if they will stock your business cards. I'd really say driving is essential for this though, i'm currently learning because I'm struggling to work this job on public transport.

I know that was a huge essay but if its helped even just of you, I've done something right.

My website is currently under development and my new commercial client work needs adding however feel free to have a look.

All images in the post are makeup work provided by me, in some cases the hair was also provided by myself.

Saturday, 11 May 2013

From chic to cheap, my under £5 challenge!

As a makeup artist, I am always looking to use the best possible products to give my clients the luxury service they are paying for. This often means shelling out on the highest priced products which make us feel like feel like we are getting something special and of higher quality than typical high street/drugstore brands.

Though my kit consists of a range of products, all of which are high end. In my own personal kit I have varying brands and some of my favourite products are those that don't cost the earth. This is what's made me go on a bit of a challenge, step out of my comfort zone and chose a product a week under £5 to trial and review!

Even at drugstore prices, to find a good product under £5 isn't easy! The high street prices are rising and the gap between high street and high end makeup is in fact, closing in rapidly.

The first item for my challenge inspired my whole idea for this little project. Whilst in boots having a gander I came across the miss sporty stand, a brand I used to purchase from as a young teen. I remember using one of their foundations on a holiday to Florida and though I had no idea what I was doing then, I remember liking it! So I spotted their anti blemish foundation for £3.50. Now typically I do have very good skin and rarely get any bad blemishes however of course every so often the little buggars will appear and working as a makeup artist and part time model I feel it's my duty to keep my skin as clear and smooth as possible.

Therefore this could be a total disaster if it doesn't work out!

However after having a feel of the foundation in store I took a punt as it looked like it could be quite nice.

I will be trialling this foundation at the toughest place this afternoon, then gym! I don't like to wear much if at all any makeup at the gym, but I do like to put a bit of light foundation on to look more awake! Obviously I will also trial this product on a normal day, however it will be put through its paces this afternoon and we'll see if a £3.50 foundation can rival a production 10 times it's price!

Would you like to join me on this challenge?

Let me know if there are any £5 or under products that you're loving right now.

Thursday, 25 April 2013

Plain and simple, quick glowy summer skin!

Hello everyone!

Whilst on a photoshoot last week, the first look of the day was for swimsuit images to be sent to castings, therefore my model needed very simple barely there makeup so that clients can see her natural look.

It was super quick and easy to do and uses very minimal products so I thought it would make a great summer makeup look for when you don't want too much on but want to look polished, so thought I would share with you what I did and what I used!

So as you can see Dani already has beautiful skin so my job was made very easy!

I primed the skin using mac strobe cream to give the skin a luminous glow and followed using Avon ideal flawless foundation buffed in with mac 188 brush. [i will probably do a separate review on this foundation because I absolutely love it and is the main foundation I use in my working kit]. This foundation is great on photoshoots because it gives coverage and is buildable whilst still looking natural and almost like a second skin which is great on camera.

On the cheeks I used another Avon gem which I have fallen in love with recently, just placed under the cheekbones, Avon illuminating face pearls, the shade of these when swirled together I think could be compared to Nars Orgasm blush, only slightly more subtle. It gives a very pretty natural and glowy flush to the cheeks which is perfect for what I was going for!

Then used mac cream colour base in hush to highlight the cheek bones, bridge of the nose, cuspids bow and under the brows. This is another favourite product of mine and I find works well on pretty much all skin tones. It can also be used on the eyes and lips so makes for a great versatile product!

On the eyes I swept the shade bootycall from the urban decay naked 2 palette all over the lid top just open up and brighten the eyes, then used mac wedge with a small pencil brush just in the crease for a little bit of depth then used a fluffy blending brush and blended everything out. I also used wedge to fill in the brows, nothing to much as I didn't want them to be over powering. I then used mac teddy eye kohl along the water line and the tiniest bit of wedge eyeshadow in the outer bottom of the eye. Finished with a light coat of mascara (can't remember which mascara I used).

To finish the look I used a light pink lipstick/gloss from one of my pixi lip palettes!

Et voila. A super quick and easy glowy look for summer that takes minimal effort and very few products but looks gorgeous!

Do you have a quick and easy summer go to routine when you want something simple? Let me know!

Love from gem :) x

Guess who's back, back again...

Well hello!

As I can recall, it's been an awfully long time... Let me explain quick.
As I'm sure most of you know I am a freelance makeup artist, over the past year I've been trying to build it  up to be my official business and well since the start of this year it is exactly that.
It's still early days for a business however I'm extremely proud of what it's becoming and the feedback I'm gaining. I also model part time now.

The blog shall now continue as it always was! Only I shall be putting in occasional pieces about work that I've been doing if I think it may be interesting to you.

I have a few planned pieces I know I want to write, but don't worry there will be plenty of reviews, out fit of the days, quirky finds as well as hints and tips I learn whilst on shoots!

So I hope you haven't all forgotten about me completely, but feel free to check out my Facebook page and website to see what I have been up to :). (Website can be viewed only on a pc or laptop, mobile site is under construction).

Lots of love!

Wednesday, 8 February 2012


So the giveaway is now closed and we have a winner...

Congrats to Tammy from !

I used to generate the winner, the more entries you had, the more numbers you got against your name.

So congrats to you Tammy! I have sent you an email, and can't wait to send you your prizes :]!

Lots of love,