secrets: giving a luxe touch …

August 12, 2013By stephanie 1 Comment
Makeup and Hair by Stephanie Daga
Photo courtesy of Ribbon+Twine Photography

What brands do you use?
Makeup Artist:
This, that, and you know … some of them …
Oh – okay … I have a bit of trouble with this mascara, and that eyeshadow …
and some of them’s foundation never matches.
Makeup Artist:
Not a problem – I have tonnes of stuff that we can mix and match to make work for you!


I take plenty of pride in offering a wide selection of brands to my clientele ( and really, that’s why hiring a professional makeup artist for your wedding day is a must  – we know the good, the bad and the ugly – we have a bottomless kit of brands and products that would cost you plenty of $$$ and time to replicate ). I have all the standard must-haves and cult faves and about 80% of my brides are well-versed in MAC foundation, Maybelline mascara, and Urban Decay primer … but very few are unaware of what I call the “luxe” touches.

“Luxe” touches usually involve a go-to item from a brand that the client hasn’t used before, deems as “a splurge item”, and may not have access too. For example:

While I may conceal and base with my tried and true foundations, I love colour correcting with my Bobbi Brown Corrector in Peach and brightening up the skin under the eyes with YSL Touche Eclat, and some Laura Mercier powder in my Undercover Pot.

Before applying powder blush, I give a natural dewy glow using a selection of creamy Becca Beach Tints for the cheeks – my favourites to use are Guava and Watermelon. And after using a shimmery powder blush, I might tone it down and blend it into the skin with a swirl of YSL Blush Radiance in either 4 or 6.

And for lips, I love plumping them up with the same lip pencil for everyone: Trish McEvoy Essential Lip Pencil in Baby Pink … and sometimes Barely There … I love how this brightens everyone’s lips naturally but also provides some shape. It looks great under most lip glosses and lipsticks – especially my MAC ones. Or if I am using a satin or matte lipstick on the bride, I’ll either dot a bit of Chelsea Girls Lip Lacquer by NARS to the centre of her mouth or a Chanel Glossimer lip gloss in a neutral pink/champagne shade.

Giving a little luxe to the bride makes her feel a little luxe … which makes for a great day, ( everyday ). It also makes her feel like she’s in on the “secret” … and who doesn’t want to be “in”? Yes?

What item in your makeup bag makes you feel luxe?


bridal style: the statement lip

April 9, 2013By stephanie
image taken from

This year, I’m seeing a trend amongst my brides that I can really get on board with – the statement lip.

After years and years of brides worrying about their eyes and all the available colours of eyeshadow, it’s really refreshing to have a change come about. Not that I don’t love a good smokey eye and a pair of fake lashes … but it’s just nice to play with something new.

Lately, I’ve received requests for the always classic red, the super fun hot pink, and my personal favourite(s) corals and burnt oranges. Brides are pairing the statement lip with a neutral-shaded eye defined with a crisp wing of liner and a good swiping of blush in a matte or satin formula. Despite the fact that the lips may stand out, the end result is a clean, fresh look. In addition, it’s timeless.

If you are a bride hoping to do a statement lip instead of the perfectly shaded eye, here are some tips:

  • be sure to moisturize well and exfoliate the lips – that means lots of chapstick or balm and some scrubbing – however, before you actually apply your lipstick, blot away any excess balm to ensure that your lipstick doesn’t slide away;
  • the bolder the colour you choose, the more you will need to use a pencil to shape the lip and to prevent bleeding; for shaping, either get a pencil that is a sure match to your lipstick colour OR get a neutral colour that matches your actual lips;  to prevent fading and bleeding or to keep the integrity of your chosen colour, you can try a clear lip primer pencil (like DuWop Reverse Lip Liner or Bite Beauty Line & Define)  to lock it all in;
  • be adventurous and try different formulas – stains are great for long-wear, rich gloss balms are great for colour without drying out lips, matte is great for showing off reds, glossy is nice for pinks, (you get what I’m saying right?), don’t lock your search for the right colour into a narrow selection – think big;
  • be an artist and mix colours too, don’t be afraid to get creative! just recently, I mixed OCC Lip Tar in Anime with some Stila Convertible Colour to get the perfect pink for a client –  she loved it;  you might have all the colour you need in the lipsticks you already have so there is no need to search … or spend; and
  • a statement lip may be all you need to look polished for everyday affairs, but on your big day and against a white dress, choose to pair your lips with well defined brows and lashes as well; and don’t forget blush and some liner!