How to have great makeup, every day …

January 4, 2019By stephanie

Photo by Mohsin Javed | Hair by Samantha Wilson | Makeup by Stephanie Daga

You can spend as much as $250 dollars on your everyday makeup essentials like foundation, concealer and mascara, but that doesn’t guarantee that your endgame makeup will look like the megabucks you spent.

Great makeup actually starts the night before with the right skin prep, and if you aren’t practising these three tips just yet … the new year is the perfect time to start!

  1. Cleanse and moisturize every night. Your skin needs to breathe and repair every night while you get your shuteye! As much as it sounds like a broken record, I’ll say it again : remove your makeup and apply your serums and moisturizer. Giving your skin what it needs to recuperate before bed means a well-prepared complexion in the morning! Think soft skin, non-existent eye bags, and plump lips!
  2. Skip cleansing in the morning, but repeat the moisturizer. Avoid stripping your skin of its natural oils in the morning which can dry out your skin and create problems for your foundation application. Rinsing your face with water to wake up is fine, but skip the cleanser or soap. After rinsing, follow-up with a lightweight, daytime moisturizer and apply some eye cream (firming or brightening – pick your poison!) and lip balm. Give it time to sink in before starting your makeup application.
  3. Prime the skin and work in layers. If you have textured skin or are concerned about uneven tone or discolouration, a targeted primer can help for a more even makeup application. Apply a light layer before foundation, and be sure to wait a beat to allow the primer to set the skin. When applying foundation, start off with a light first layer working your way from the centre of the face outward. Blend well! Just like your primer, give it some time before adding another layer of foundation or moving on to concealer . Repeat your layers until you get your desired coverage.

Unfiltered “filtered-looking” makeup is all about prep and patience! Begin with these three tips and start to see results almost immediately!

Happy skin prep!

Starting the year off right …

January 1, 2019By stephanie

Happy-New-Year-Makeup-Artists

Here we are! Another year to level up …

I’m sure by now, you’ve been inundated with all the posts, articles and links that tell you how to be your best self, how to organize your life better, or how to live healthier … or more stylishly … or prettier than ever. It’s a lot of stuff to take in and it also kind of makes you want to throw in the towel already … am I right?

I personally don’t believe in the whole “new year, new you” mantra. Because I think we are already all doing pretty well as we are … don’t you? I mean, you made it through the new year countdown, yes? And you’re alive, reading this post, yes? And, yes things might be tough in a few areas, and amazing in others, and problematic in a few other places … but in general – you’ve survived it all. You’re doing just fine as you.

So, no … we don’t need a new you in 2019. We just need to take it up a notch. And I have a great idea for you! Instead of trying to master a whole bunch of big changes all at once, try this one simple trick to get your new year to the next level :

Buy yourself a brand new lipstick in a colour you’re dying to try.

Or a new eyeliner that makes you feel powerful.

Or a new foundation that gives you the confidence to wear your hair off your face.

Or a new pair of jeans that will showcase all the squats and healthy eating you plan to do.

Or a new bra that lifts your girls as much as it lifts your mental spirits.

The key here : gift yourself a little something that encourages you to gain a new perspective on your year ahead. Whether you want to be more brave, more confident, or more self-aware … it starts with appreciating and signifying who you are and who you evolve to be.

Live 2019 one day at a time … one bold lipstick colour a day!

Happy New year everyone!

31 days to a prettier 2017 : focus on healthier habits …

January 30, 2017By stephanie

Just last saturday we chatted about setting up a beauty calendar, and how maintaining all your beauty appointments is just as important in your overall wellness as is regular doctor checkups and staying healthy. We’ve also touched upon healthier eating habits, which benefits your skin. 

Now, while many people start off a brand new year looking to hit the gym and lose weight, we’ve avoided that resolution during this guide … until now.

Day 30 : January 30

Get active daily.

Notice that there is no mention of losing weight. Or building muscle. Or entering a fitness competition. The direction is simply to get active on a daily basis. It could be as simple as walking your lunch hour away. Waking up and doing yoga poses for 10 minutes. Going for a swim. Playing a round of pick-up basketball. Get your body moving – plain and simple.

Sure, getting your heart rate up has nothing to do with killing your look with contour and highlight; and for the most part, no one feels pretty when they are sweaty … but the benefits of moving around can help improve circulation and reduce stress which then translates into glowing healthy skin and less frown lines, wrinkles and stress acne. If you lose a little bit of weight along the way … well, hey – BONUS!

Healthy habits = happy lifestyle = a beautiful you!

TIP : You don’t have to sign up at your local community centre to get started on healthier habits. Yoga poses and body weight exercises can be done at open and the minute you wake up!

HOMEWORK : Download some of those fun apps that give you a workout in 7 minutes!

31 days to a prettier 2017 : prep a beauty calendar …

January 28, 2017By stephanie

So, if you have been following the guide … you’ve made some appointments for your skin, your hair, and perhaps even eyelash extensions. That’s great. You deserve to treat yourself.

And treating yourself should happen regularly.

Day 28 : January 28

Prepare a beauty calendar for the next 8 months or for the full year!

A beauty calendar can help you stay on track of all the appointments for the one thing that matters the most : your wellness. Yes, many will say wellness is more about your internal health – like doctors appointments, therapy appointments, etc. – but wellness can also be nurtured by taking care of your beauty needs and giving you the opportunity to take care of you in ways that make you FEEL good about you. When you feel good about you, you’re mentally and emotionally happy … and happy is definitely a part of wellness. We tend to push aside our beauty appointments because we seem them as unimportant or not urgent … but your wellness IS priority.

Whether you use your Hobonichi planner, or that boy band calendar you received as a stocking stuffer this past holiday season, start looking ahead and the next 8 to 12 months. Start making notes on the days that you should :

  • See your stylist for a trim, cut, or colour
  • Book in your next facial
  • Get a Brazilian
  • Enjoy a therapeutic massage

There are many more beauty appointments you could include, but you get the idea. In addition, your calendar should include important event dates – ones where you’ll want to seek some professional beauty services in preparation for. Your cousin’s wedding, your high school reunion, your industry’s annual gala. This way, you’ll note to make any one-off appointments (manicures, pedicures, eyelash extensions) close to the event date.

The days that you mark can be used as loose placeholders too … you don’t have to make any appointments for that specific day – but you want to stay within range of it. When you see it in your calendar it will trigger your brain to book and KEEP your appointment just like you would any other appointment you have. Preparing in advance is like 98% away from success!

Plan away!

TIP : Colour-coding! Colour coding your different appointments and service providers can keep you focused.

HOMEWORK : Aim to do at least 6 months if 8 or 12 seem daunting!

31 days to a prettier 2017 : choose your weapon …

January 26, 2017By stephanie

Very early on in this January 2017 guide, we told you that you needed to clean your brushes thoroughly and regularly from then on. Hopefully, you’ve been in the habit of doing so. Having clean tools is the best for avoiding irritations to the skin and reducing any opportunity for contamination between products. But having the right tools, that are in great working condition, is key to having great makeup looks.

Day 25 : January 25

Do an inventory and quality control check on all your makeup tools.

Besides brushes, this would include sponges, tweezers, mirrors and even your cotton swabs. 

Check your brushes – are they losing fibres or shedding? Are the brush hairs frayed and bent and out of shape? Are the handles broken or wiggly? And what about your tweezers? Still sharp and straight? Are your special makeup sponges split or torn anywhere?

The goal here is to either repair any tools (if you can) as needed, toss any tools that are past their prime, and make note of anything that needs to be replaced. In addition, you may want to consider doubling up on any brushes that you use constantly or need to clean constantly because you are always using it. For me, this would include shader brushes and/or crease/blending brushes (in fact, I probably own two of every eye brush I have). 

Nice you’ve weeded out the brushes and tools that need to be retired from their job, and have restocked with fresh new tools, you’ll find your makeup application easier, cleaner, and more polished.

Get to work!

TIP : If you have brushes where the hairs or fibres are out of shape or somewhat frayed, try cleansing and then CONDITIONING the natural hairs, before you consider tossing it. Sometimes that can fix the issue.  If not … recycle!

HOMEWORK : If you happen to be a one brush per facial feature kinda gal, try broadening your horizons and seek out different shaped brushes for said facial feature. Different brushes have different jobs and can make a huge difference in the execution of a particular look!