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Base Makeup Sephora

Color Correcting for Beginners

March 17, 2016

Last week I stopped by Sephora at South Coast Plaza for a Correct and Conceal Mini Makeover to learn more about the color correcting trend happening right now. I was curious to see if there was anything that could cover dark spots and redness better than a full coverage concealer or foundation. I had a session with artist Dre who was one of the most knowledgeable artists I’ve ever worked with. She was very thorough in explaining color correcting, going through all the options and application techniques, gave me awesome skin prep recommendations and I could not have had a more fun experience. If you’re like me you and consider yourself a novice or beginner when it comes to color correction you might be intimidated by the whole concept. I’ll share my makeover experience, what was used, what I bought and some thoughts on the product testing process. I hope this will help give you some tips and ideas of what to try on yourself. If you have a Sephora near you I highly recommend you call them to schedule a mini-makeover. They can be as quick as 15 minutes and I think you will be impressed with how much you learn – I learned a lot. Scheduling one in advance is probably best to make sure they have someone on site to sit down with you although they can accommodate walk ins sometimes and they are free of charge!

First a quick run through of the mini-makeover I had at Sephora. She started by assessing my skin type and skin concerns. I mentioned I had super sensitive skin and told her about a few products I had allergic reactions to. Personal concerns for my skin were to improve texture, cover dark spots from scars that were healing, under-eye darkness and redness in general. I also mentioned that I liked a streamlined easy approach to applying base face makeup so she picked out her four favorite color correcting products for my skin type that would be easy to use and incorporate along with some skincare items for me to try for calming and radiance.

For a bit of background on Color Correcting it’s not a new trend but it has been very popular right now. The concept of color correcting is that you can use certain colors to counter or diffuse others. Green will correct red, peach will help with dark spots and undereye circles, pink and purple will counter dullness and brighten the skintone. I initially thought using a full coverage concealer or foundation would be sufficient but I often find it leaves the face looking a bit flat and sometimes those dark spots still show through. This is where color correcting can help. Here’s a look at the Sephora Beauty Studio in store – it varies per store but most have a station with mirrors, makeup remover and tools for artists to apply product on your face.

A run through of all the products she used on me from start to finish:

Step 1: Prep the skin

She started by having me remove my makeup with the Ole Henriksen The Clean Truth Cleansing Cloths which are super gentle and non-irritating for my sensitive skin. This one cleans, balances and hydrates in one step which is convenient for on-the-go makeup removal. Next she used the First Aid Beauty Radiance Pads to help with surface texture. She followed with the Caudalie Vinoperfect Radiance Serum and Ole Henriksen Nurture Me since I mentioned my face was prone to irritation and flare ups. Skin felt smooth, nicely hydrated and calmed down.

Step 2: Base

Dre’s theory of using color correcting was to use apply in steps and use it with your current foundation routine. She started by applying the Algenist Reveal Concentrated Color Correcting Drops in Blue to help brighten the overall skintone as a base which did indeed brighten the skin without looking scary blue. Blue helps to neutralize sallow skin. She followed with the Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Invisible Cover Stick in 128 mentioning one’s foundation will do a lot of the color correcting as a starting point to neutralize uneven skintone or dark spots.

Step 3: Color Correct

At this point even with a fuller coverage foundation on my skin you can still see dark circles under the eyes and dark spots from acne scars that are healing still show through. Rather than layer on the foundation color correcting helps add coverage without caking on product. I was skeptical but was really impressed with how literally all the dark spots disappeared with a green color corrector and undereye circles disappeared with a peach/melon corrector. She applied the Sephora Collection Bright Futures Color Correctors in Green and Melon. The key here was to apply and let set so that colors don’t get muddied when you blend them wet. For the green she dotted on spots and then blended with a detailed concealer brush in a cross hatch method to help blend and cover naturally. For the melon she applied directly under my eyes in a downward swiping motion and blended with the sponge tip applicator.

Step 4: Conceal, Set and Finish

Once the color correctors have properly set (takes maybe 3 minutes at most, as long as you don’t pile on the creams) finish by taking concealer or foundation and pat it on top. She used the Sephora Collection Pro Foundation Brush #47 which is a more affordable similar version of the Marc Jacobs Beauty Sculpting Foundation Brush to roll and dab on the foundation over the corrected spots gently and then blend everything out gently with a beautyblender. You don’t want to take a sponge or brush and press too hard on the face or else it will drag and mix colors to make it look muddy. The final step she used was to set with a loose powder. She showed me the difference between the Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Powder and also the Besame Brightening Face Powder in Violet (both applied with a puff). She said the Laura Mercier is her favorite (it’s one of mine too) but if I wanted to try something new she recommended the Violet to brighten the skin, for fairer skins she recommended the Pink (which I already own).

Step 5: Add color and makeup

She added a bit of blush and bronzer on my skin so my face wouldn’t look flat from all the base makeup, but I asked her to keep it minimal so I could see how the correctors and foundations performed through the afternoon. We skipped everything else and I was impressed that my makeup lasted well into the late evening without any touchups needed. Her skincare recommendations and application made it so nothing budged or creased or faded. Once I use up some of my moisturizers I will need to buy some of the items she used on me.

I have never been so impressed with a makeup session as I have been with my visit to Sephora. Dre taught me so many things – I really appreciated her taking the time to go through application tips and recommending products specific to my needs. My brother tagged along to help me take photos and afterwards I asked him if he thought my face looked ok. He said yes, it looked natural and he couldn’t tell that there were any weird colors. So it passed the brother test πŸ™‚ In discussing the different color corrector options, I asked her why she recommended the Sephora Collection Color Correctors over the ones from Urban Decay Correcting Fluids or YSL Touche Eclat Neutralizers or even the ones that come in cream compacts. She said it was a matter of preference – the cream palettes can definitely multi-task with all the options for color correction and concealer, but to keep things simple she said the Sephora Collection correctors were her favorite for consistency, texture and coverage. (I bought one each of the Urban Decay and YSL to test against the Sephora Collection and I’ll say right now she was right.)

Next up is a run through review of everything I bought and tried along with a mini tutorial of how I’ve been recreating the color correcting look to diffuse dark spots and dark circles. Here are the items she used on me during the makeover. I bought all the items she tried with the exception of the Violet powder because I already own the Pink although I’m seriously considering going back to the store to pick it up this weekend.

Left to right are:

  • Micro Mini Correct Four by beautyblender – there are some new beautyblender options, for the color correcting trend they launched a set of four in different colors, I really like these for blending under the eyes or in the creases of the nose, it’s nice to have different colors on hand to match the correctors so you don’t have to worry about mixing colors together 
  • Algenist Reveal Concentrated Color Correcting Drops in Blue – you can use these alone or mixed in with foundation to help color correct the skin. I’ve been using this as a base, almost like a primer to help counter my sallow undertones with my olive yellow skin. It brightens the skin without looking too blue. You can even mix it in with moisturizer to blend all over to make it a bit more sheer. I really like the way this performs. 
  • Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Invisible Cover Stick Foundation in 128 (looks dark but blends out to a slightly lighter finish, that being said I am getting lighter right now so I will probably have to purchase a different shade soon to mix) is one of the most amazing foundation sticks I have ever tried (it rivals Tom Ford’s) – I’ll have a separate review in the upcoming weeks once I’ve given it a thorough test drive but it offers medium to full buildable coverage that looks amazing
  • Sephora Collection Bright Future Color Correctors in Green and Melon – After testing this compared to YSL and Urban Decay, I have to say that my favorites for texture and consistency on my face are the Sephora Collection ones, they don’t crease or emphasize fine lines and they have enough coverage and pigment to truly neutralize my face issues, the Urban Decay Naked Skin Color Correcting Fluid in Peach has a similar coverage to the Sephora ones and looks great on the skin but if I don’t have enough primer under my eyes it emphasizes all the fine lines that I don’t want to show up, the YSL by comparison is a lot more sheer in finish and I need more coverage
    • A quick side note, during my make over I mentioned my favorite under eye concealer of the moment was the Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Concealer and that I liked the ones with peachy tones (mainly R32) to warm up and brighten under eyes, Dre did mention that this was also one of her favorites to use, but she showed me the Sephora Collection in Melon for me to try something new
  • Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay In Place Flawless Wear Concealer in Warm Light Medium – she used this to highlight my face and I was so impressed with the coverage and texture I had to try it out – it offers smooth flawless coverage and really does stay in place without caking or creasing through out the day
  • Besame Brightening Face Powder in Vanilla Rose (she used Violet on me in store)
  • Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Powder – I already own this and have repurchased numerous times, it’s one of my favorite loose setting powders, if you haven’t tried it I will say you need to
A simple step by step mini tutorial showing before and after. I took the tips learned at my appointment to recreate a flawless base at home. I hoped to take an after show last week but the store lighting wasn’t ideal. In the first shot I did prep my skin with a thin layer of foundation, but as you can see dark spots and dark circles are still highly visible:

Below are the tools I recommend using, but you can shop your stash and find what works:

A look at packaging and different applicators for each kind of color corrector that I’ve been testing out ranging from droppers, sponge tips, squeeze tubes and click brush applicators:

Side by side swatches of the color correctors and some concealers:

A look at the Sephora Collection Bright Future Color Correctors, note there is also Orange/Deep and Lavender available online but when I was in store they didn’t have those colors yet:

In case you missed the Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Concealer post, here are all the shades swatched:

I hope you enjoyed this overview on color correcting! If you’re a novice like me I hope the rundown of my makeover, all the options I tried and swatches help make the color correcting concept seem less confusing or intimidating. I went into my appointment thinking that there wasn’t going to be much that could be done for my dark spots but I went in with an open mind and learned so much. Sometimes makeovers can be a daunting process especially if you get a pushy artist or one who just doesn’t listen to your needs or who doesn’t care preferences. I really recommend trying to book an appointment at your local Sephora – I am already planning on going back for a second appointment hopefully in the next couple of months because my experience was that good. If you’re in the area of South Coast Plaza try to book one with Dre – she’s awesome. If you can’t make it into the store, there is an online survey on the Sephora Color Correcting Makeup page to guide you and help narrow down the picks according your specific concerns and skin type.

Have you tried color correcting recently or is it something you’ve always done for your base makeup routine? Please let me know what you’ve tried and your thoughts. I always learn new tips and tricks from you and would love to hear about what you have been testing or if you have any favorites.
This post was created in partnership with Sephora. As always all opinions my own. Most products picked out and purchased by me, press samples include the Besame Powder and Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Concealers.

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The Makeup Show LA March 19-20, 2016 – Event Preview

March 14, 2016

The Makeup Show Los Angeles 2016 is happening this weekend March 19th – 20th at the California Market Center and I’m thrilled to be able to share a sneak preview of some items that will be available at the show! For those new to The Makeup Show is a pro-beauty event open only to those in the beauty and fashion industry including makeup artists, hairstylists, estheticians, cosmetologists, agents, models, stylists, photographers, industry insiders and anyone that works or studies in under the umbrella of beauty and fashion. It typically happens once a year in Los Angeles – they travel nationwide to other cities like New York City, Dallas, Chicago and Orlando.

Tickets are available for purchase online or at the door (they are cheaper if you buy ahead of time online). There are 1 day or 2 day passes available. Since this is an event for professionals you will need to show some credentials at check in (full listing of qualified credentials on the ticket page).

There will be approximately 60 different booths including individual beauty brands, beauty retailers and educators attending such as Make Up For Ever, MustaeV, Hakuhodo, OCC, RCMA, Beautylish, Urban Decay, Sephora Pro (full list of exhibitors here). To see last year’s feature check out this post here on The Makeup Show 2015.

For the preview items sent by The Makeup Show team, full listing is as follows:

A closer look at the color items below starting with the face products. I first tried the BΓ©same Brightening Face Powders last week in store at Sephora. I tried Violet which is a color corrector for light-medium skintones designed to correct yellow and red (it’s brightening). I was thoroughly impressed by the finish – it’s truly transparent yet brightening and left no white or purple cast on the skin. (I did decide to wait on purchasing it though.) I received Vanilla Rose from The Makeup Show which or light-medium tones, color corrects green and blue tones in the skin. It has a transparent finish as well with a subtle finish. Overall I prefer the effect of the Violet on my face for all over but Vanilla Rose is good for setting the undereye area for me.

Next up is the Scott Barnes Multi Media Liquid Makeup. This is a bi-phase liquid that separates once it settles much like the Armani Glow Foundation. I received the shade Cafe Au Lait which is too dark and too peach for my skintone so it was hard for me to tell how it really performed with such a mis-match. I hope to check out the other colors in person at the show. If I find a match I will be sure to let you know.

From MustaeV is the Lustrous Cream Base which is subtle shimmering opal cream product. It has a similar concept to MAC’s Strobe Cream but the MustaeV has a more emollient moisturizing formula. The finish is also a bit more transparent in finish so the glow cast is more subtle on the skin. You can use the MustaeV as a base under foundation, mix it in with foundation for a glow effect or use on top to highlight any area you want a glow. If you’re interested in a full review let me know.

Swatches on bare skin, note the items are swatched heavily to show the color. When applied on the face with blending the Cream Base and Powder both disappear into a translucent finish.

For lips The Makeup Show as quite a few bold and super edgy colors. From OCC are two grey lip color items. The Cosmetic Colour Pencil in Sebastian is a grey taupe. It’s for both lips and eyes, I can see myself wearing it on the eyes. On the lips – I just don’t pull off grey well. There’s a new Lip Tar in Indrid which is an opalescent violet pink shimmer. The pigment and finish is excellent. The color is not something I would ever wear. For both of these shades I didn’t swatch the entire lip – part of the center isn’t touched up so you can see a bit of my natural lip color underneath.

From Make Up For Ever there are three items in the Lip Fever Passion Pink Collection including Artist Lip Balm #920 Flushed Cherry, Artist Lip Blush #921 Exalted Rosewood and Artist Acrylip #922 Electric Fuchsia. You can find all three at Sephora now. I received the Acrylip #922 which is a high pigment liquid lipstick. It’s a lightweight formula that covers the lips entirely and has a glossy finish. At this time I do not know if more colors in these formulas are coming out – I hope they do because as far as a liquid lipstick goes, I am really liking the shiny finish (most liquid lipsticks are either too opaque or matte which makes them look so flat).
The last color for preview is the BΓ©same Sweetheart Glaze in Caramel which is a glossy nude. It’s described as a luminous lip protectant with moisturizing ingredients. It has a medium to strong vanilla scent and offers medium smooth coverage which I find really good. Often times cream nudes can settle into lip lines but this one does not. It does have a moisturizing finish – if a gloss formula does not have any moisture-added properties my lips are dried out by the next day – with this one, no peeling or dried out  lips so I give this one a thumbs up.

Kat Von D Beauty always launches new items at The Makeup Show. Last year this time the Shade + Light Eye Contour Palette made it’s debut (I still don’t own it but I think I need it in my life). For those who like the concept but want something non-neutral there are four Shade + Light Eye Contour Quads launching. I have a preview of plum which features all matte shades. The colors are in the plum and pink color family which make for a softly contoured eye look. The texture is very powdery with a lot of kick-up but finish is really good. It’s like skin but better with no powdery finish on the eyes – it’s like the product melts into the skin. I played with this a few ways and found that the synthetic brushes were the best tools for application. The Shade + Light Double Ended Contour Brush is excellent in quality and super soft. It applies matte shades very well and blends colors to create a nice gradient. 
Also new is from Kat Von D Beauty is the Lock-It Color Correcting Eyeshadow Primer. I was sent Fair but I suspect the next shade up in Light would be more ideal for my skintone. There are a lot of mixed reviews on this one. I’m in the batch that likes it – I smudge it on the lids direct from the tube and blend with a finger. It evens out the lid nicely without looking cakey or flat and truly did make the matte eyeshadows from the Shade + Light Eye Quad last all day long without fading or budging. I have yet to try it with other eyeshadow formulas but first impressions are overwhelmingly positive.

A quick eye look I took a few days ago. This is shown around 5-6 hours after initial application. Colors looked pretty much the same as when I first applied – do note I did a very subtle wash of all four colors layered together.

Last but not least is the Pur Cosmetics Eye Polish in Caviar. This is described as an all-in-one primer and shadow product. It comes with a silicone applicator which I wasn’t able to master. I did try applying this with other detail brushes and found it to be an extremely glitzy highly metallic black gold. I think it will take some practice to figure out the layering and blending – but I will say that the lasting power is quite impressive. I do like a good shimmer eyeshadow but I found this one to be more glitzy than the Armani Eyes to Kill Intense Shadows so for me would be better suited for going out versus everyday.

To recap, the event in Los Angeles is happening this weekend March 19-20th at the California Market Center. All the event details, location, hours, exhibitors, special speaker events are on their website www.themakeupshow.com/la. You can purchase tickets ahead of time online here or also at the door (they are cheaper if you purchase online). Follow them on Instagram @themakeupshow to get more sneak peeks of what’s launching at the event.

I hope you enjoyed this preview! Full recap of the event to follow after
this weekend. If you’re planning to attend please let me know in the
comments! Or if you’ve attended one – would love to hear about your
experience and thoughts too.

Items provided courtesy of The Makeup Show team as a preview for the LA 2016 Event.