So what’s in Colette’s pro makeup kit?
B rand names and fancy packaging never fail to seduce beauty junkies but educated and experienced pro artists aren’t romanced so easily. It’s a product’s performance that wins our hearts. We know that grand price tags don’t mean big payoff on the face; even the easy-on-the-wallet brands can pack a huge punch for a beauty that needs to last all day or impress.
I’m not saying I don’t carry the cult fav products that many of you cling to such as Nars Orgasm blush, or the Urban Decay Naked palette, but I know where to draw the line on marketing hype versus product science. You won’t find the best artists screaming the virtues of their latest haul on Youtube. We are all busy researching the wear of products to discover if they stand up to oxidation without turning orange, or if they pass the “flash” test in photography, or whether they conquer sweat under humidity.
Products that have passed the test may not be household names!When I started my career, I pledged to never work for a cosmetic company; I decided right from the get-go that any alliance with one brand meant that I’d have a one-sided kit, with many of the products performing poorly, but they were free to me, or I’d simply be exposing a bias outright to that company. My clients often celebrate when they ask about cosmetics I stock and I’m breathless listing them. No one makeup brand formulates every product well. So filling a kit with a single company’s products means I’d be under-servicing my clients. In fact, many compacts and bottles you spot emerging from my case should be ones you’ve never heard of…ones that were created for the pro artist community. They have beginnings under the careful eye of some of the top film, stage and TV makeup experts who’ve understood how lighting and other conditions affect colour, ingredients and wear.
Is there a king of the cosmetics castle?
The products that have passed the test for me are still high-end but they may not all be household names to you and they shouldn’t be. The mass consumer cosmetics are designed to look great, package up well and dazzle. But many don’t do the job their hugely expensive ad campaigns promise you they will. Your money goes towards their marketing. A $50 foundation costs that much because they pay their models, and especially celebrities, thousands a day to do their print ads. The pro artist products don’t resort to these tactics to spread the word on their performance; they have an eager market who will go to great lengths to find them through trade magazines like Makeup Artist Magazine or by lurking in the makeup artist forums where the Oscar and Emmy-winning makeup artists hang out and share discoveries. Makeup production costs only a fraction of what you pay. If you are parting with $30 for a lipstick, you need to eaves drop on a pro artist’s coffee chat!
A makeover’s best kept secret…can you even buy it?
Though I’ve still spent a fortune on makeup through the years, I’ve discovered my investment matters more in my tools. You won’t find the carefully handcrafted Japanese brushes I use in Canada. My $200 blush brush is sold in only 3 places worldwide and one of them is always sold out. Why are these tools my prize possession? The bristles are all natural from the softest hair found in the animal kingdom. To protect the integrity of the super soft hair tip, no machines ever trim and shape the brush. Tips are left untouched and brushes are shaped by hand and trimmed at the base. Their careful graduation of length means they pick up the face and eye powders and place them on the skin in a delicate pattern that blends seamlessly and naturally.
No hassle set-up for you!
Elite brushes aren’t the only equipment you should demand from a pro. A mobile professional makeup artist who comes to your home or whatever location you choose, should NEVER use your stuff….not your tables, not your chairs, not your sinks, not even your lighting. You should never be asked to provide that for someone whose job it is to offer you “in home” service. Pro artists know that home lighting is too yellow for true colour readings. And natural lighting could be hard to come by depending on the layout of your home. I will always bring all the makeup, tables, extension cords, lights and even music to your beauty experience.
All the logos you see on this page are brands you’ll spot in my kit as I master your makeover. But I’ll always introduce new products I uncover as I search for the best superstars in the makeup wars. If I haven’t test-driven it to guarantee its natural beauty or slept in it to see if it lasts for days, it won’t ever touch your face.