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Monday, December 16, 2013

Makeup For The Over 40 Set/Tips by Richmond VA Makeup Artist Aaron Ellerbrock

Recently on our Facebook page, I asked our fans to let us know what they would like for me to answer in the blog as and I needed a little inspiration.

One of the questions I received a few times was how do I do my makeup now that I am over 40 and not look like I am trying to be 20 something?

You don't have to be a makeup artist to know that what worked for you at 21 ain't necessarily workin' at 41.

1. Firstly, it's time to pull out the big guns when you moisturize. That square yellow bottle just isn't going to give you all the benefits you need. An emollient cream will prepare your skin for makeup, give you a dewy finish, and lessen the appearance of fine lines. Invest in something that will give real results.

2. If you aren't already using a yellow based foundation, you will probably want to check one out. No mater whether your Caucasian or African American, your skin needs warmth to look youthful and to tone out ruddiness.

3. Reach for a "clicky" pen concealer rather than thick, creamy consistencies. Your under-eyes are thinner now and need lighter, more illuminating properties. Nothing is more aging than cakey, crepey concealer.

4. Use cream blush! Our faces are losing volume and we need a pop of color to make us look alive and to make our cheeks look plumper. Cream formulas look dewier, like a glow coming from within.

5. Use a highlighter to mimic the way light hits a youthful skin. Tear ducts, top of cheekbones, brow bones, bridge of the nose and top of cupid's bow are places for this.

6. Use a puff instead of a brush to apply a clear translucent powder where you need it. For most of us, that the t-zone. The puff presses the powder in to set your makeup, but avoids that dry look.

7. A great eyeshadow base will cover up little veins or pink tones in the lid that make you look tired, and will also create the illusion of smoother skin.

8. Brows may be getting skimpier. Choose a fine pointed pencil in a shade lighter than your hair, and very gently sketch it into your brows. No death grip on that pencil, now.

9. Curl your lashes! Cheapest eyelift ever. You're welcome!!

10. A soft brown pencil worked deep into your lashes and very slightly flicked up at the ends will define your eye and give it a subtle lift.

For more tips, contact me for a FACEing class! I will go through all of your current products and walk you through a routine that you can duplicate at home. My shopping list ranges from drugstore to high end to suit any budget.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Great Holiday Eyes!!-Richmond VA Makeup Artist Aaron Ellerbrock

In order from top to bottom: Green Shimmer Liner and Picnic in the Park Shadow
Beige Glitter Liner and Girls Night Out Shadow
Electric Blue Liner and Curacao Punch Shadow
Green Shimmer Liner and Break the Bank Shadow
With the holidays here, I have been looking for a great way to do "fun eyes" that is easy and budget friendly. While in Sephora the other day I started playing with some of their products and came across their Jumbo Liner 12 Hour Wear Waterproof and Colorful Shadows.
Basically what I did was lay down the liner and then pack the shadow on top. This is a quick and easy way to create a smoky eye without having to use a lot of technique.
What surprised me the most was that these did NOT MOVE!!! I mean at all! Now in all honesty, I did use a little bit of Urban Decay's setting spray on top. But, once I did that I rubbed and rubbed and rubbed and the color did not fade or transfer. It looked amazing.
I used metallic liners and shadows in very vibrant colors, but they also have flat liners and shadows if you want to have a more subtle look.
Just take the pencil and color in your eye lid from the lash line to about half way up your lid. Take a brush and blend that liner up the rest of the way on your lid to the crease. Don't take it up on the brow bone. Next, take a shadow brush a just press the shadow on top and blend it into the crease and voila! You have a quick smoky eye for your holiday party. You can take a soft flat shadow on the brow bone to act as a highlite and finish off the look with two good coats of mascara. I would suggest the setting spray if you want to ensure the color stays put all night long.
One of the best things about this is not only do you get a fun holiday look without much technique but the liner is only $14 and the shadow is just $13. You will love it!!
Let me know if you need assistance in choosing the best colors for you and have some fun with this!!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Fall Style Shoot-Richmond VA Makeup Artist Aaron Ellerbrock

I always love to have the chance to work on style shoots. These type of shoots allow me to have a bit more creativity and a chance to "play" with everything in my kit. I get to pull out colors or products that might not be as appropriate for a bridal session.

In any case, this shoot was so much fun. I worked with an amazing team and the models were all super sweet. I hope you enjoy these shots. Thanks for checking them out!!

Makeup: BRIDEFACE Richmond - Aaron Ellerbrock
Hair: 1213 Hair Studio – Kelly Hopkins, Kimberly James-Emery, and Joshua Howard
Stylist: Anthony Bryant
Models: Kayla Thomas, Carrie Souleret, Taylor Grannis, and Jill Jefferson


Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Save Your to keep that healthy glow/Richmond Virginia Wedding Makeup Artist Aaron Ellerbrock

I pride myself on being a great makeup artist, but what some of you may not know is that I was the Training Executive for a luxury skin care brand for several years before starting BRIDEface Richmond. Working with that brand, I learned quite a bit about the skin, how it functions, and how to keep it healthy. I also learned that many skin care lines want you to pay LOADS of money for their products.

In my honest opinion, you just do not need to do that. However, I will add a caveat here. If you start early to keep your skin healthy you will not need to spend loads of money on products, but if you wait until the damage is done, that is another story.

Taking care of your skin is a simple process. There are five basic items that everyone should have. By "have" I mean you should use them too! It doesn't help to own them if they just sit in your bathroom.

The five essentials are; cleanser, exfoliator, moisturizer, eye cream, and SPF. Your cleanser should be one that is good for your skin type and, if you are wearing makeup, it should also be a makeup remover. Many cleansers are just for washing away environmental debris, so make sure you pick one up that also removes makeup.

Be careful when purchasing an exfoliator. You want to fine one that is not too abrasive. I like to use ones that say "milled" or "rounded" when referring to the bead. Usually jojoba beads are going to be the best. I am not a fan of the St. Ives as I find it too aggressive. The reason why you exfoliate is that moisturizers can't penetrate dead skin cells so we need to get them off the surface. How often you exfoliate is determined by your skin type. For drier skins usually once a week is enough. For oily skins it may be 3 times a week. If the skin starts to get red, you are doing it too much.

Moisturizers and eye creams are essential to replenish the vital nutrients the skin needs to remain healthy as well as a great way to protect the skin from the nasty free radicals. Those are the things in the environment that cause the skin to degrade and what makes us look older. Think of a carpenter's nail that is left out in rainy weather. It starts to oxidize and rust. That basic breakdown also happens to our skin with free radicals, thus, why we want to look for moisturizers that provide antioxidant protection. Vitamins A, C, and E are all great antioxidants. Resveratrol is also a great one to look for as it is extremely potent and stable so it doesn't break down easily. And yes ladies, I truly believe an eye cream is essential. There are lots of articles on the web that say you don't need a separate eye cream but just go to the mirror and look at your skin. On the face you see lots of pores, but you do not see that around the eye. The skin there IS different so you need a different product. Most eye creams are made with ingredients at a smaller molecular weight so that they can penetrate skin that doesn't have a lot of large pores.

Finally, SPF is a must. The number one things that prematurely ages us is the sun. Yes, we all look pretty with a tan, but being 25 and looking 45 is not so pretty! Come on, you all have seen "Tan Mom", right?? Remember that the basic idea for the SPF number is as follows: The average skin tone can be in the sun for about 10 minutes before it starts to take on damage (fairer skins less time and darker or olive skins get a bit more time). You take your SPF number and multiply it by 10 and that lets you know how long your protection lasts. So if you are using an SPF of 20 you have 200 minutes or 3 hours and 20 minutes of protection. If you perspire or go in water you will loose some of that SPF. And also remember your protection starts at the time you put it on, NOT WHEN YOU GO OUTSIDE!! That is why you need to reapply your SPF throughout the day. And one last point; an SPF over a 45 or 50 is just not worth it. SPF does not stay stable for longer than that. Maybe one day technology will find a way, but not right now.

Nivea, Nutrogena, Cetaphil, Olay, are all brands that you can pick up at your local drugstore and are often the items that dermatologists will recommend. I have been using the Simple line and I love it. It is great for sensitive skins. Basically your skin will let you know if your products are working or not.

Please feel free to message me if you have any skin care questions. I love talking about the skin and how to keep it healthy. Coming up in a future post..."What do I use if the damage has already been done to my skin?" Stay tuned!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Color IQ at Sephora...Never Get The Wrong Shade Again!!/Richmond Makeup Artist Aaron Ellerbrock

This new gadget at Sephora is AMAZING!!!!!! As many of you know I spend one day a month in the store training and educating on my favorite foundation brand, Cover FX. While I was there a couple of months ago they introduced me to this new technology called Color IQ. In a nutshell, what it does is find the exact foundations that match both your skin tone and depth of color!

I can't tell you the number of times my clients have said they buy a foundation, or tinted moisturizer, or BB/CC cream and it was the wrong color. Now, you never have to worry about that again...and it really works (more on that in a minute). Sephora teamed up with Pantone the company known for creating color matching. The Pantone Color Matching System is largely a standardized color reproduction system. By standardizing the colors, different manufacturers in different locations can all refer to the Pantone system to make sure colors match without direct contact with one another. If you ever have seen a book of color swatches (the big books) it is probably Pantone.

So here is how Color IQ works. Basically you go into Sephora and ask to get matched with the Color IQ system. This works best with a clean face, but they can always remove your makeup if you have some on. They use their special camera, pressed to your face and take three scans. Most cameras work using ambient lighting, but their device captures the images in pitch darkness (hence why it is pressed against your face). This allows the tool to focus on the skins physiology and eliminate the variables that distort shade selections.

Once the scans are taken, the computer gives you your matches from over 1,500 options. Now what I think is so cool is that you can then filter your matches in a variety of ways. Do you only want options for a liquid foundation? You can filter that way. How about foundations only for oily skin? Sure thing! If you only like a certain brand (probably Cover FX as it is amazing!!), you can filter so you only see that brand. There are so many ways to filter, you really can't go wrong. And, as I mentioned earlier, it really works. I had my Color IQ done before my summer vacation and I randomly tried three of my matches. All three were perfect. Then I thought I would try it again after a week of a little sun, again trying three other random matches...all of which were spot on!

The process takes less then a minute but has the potential to save you hours of searching and lots of money as you won't get the wrong shade. If you have even once chosen the wrong color of foundation, GO TO SEPHORA!!! Check this out. You will not be sorry!!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Getting the "natural" look that still works for photography--BRIDEface Richmond Wedding Artist Aaron Ellerbrock

I looooove when my clients bring in photos of makeup they like. It puts everyone on the same page and can save a lot of time. But let me illustrate some of the challenges with what you see in a photo, particularly many of the most popular ones you'll find on Pinterest.

Check out these side by side shots of a bride done by Nancy at BRIDEface in Cincinnati. It is the same exact makeup but at different facial angles, quality of light, and photography techniques.

Many times I have a client at her trial point out to me a photo of makeup I have done on my website or Facebook, and they say, "I wanna look really natural, like this bride." Now, I did this makeup, and I know that in fact, that bride has a WHOLE lot of liner and shadow on. But the shot might be her looking straight ahead at the camera. If the client could see a shot of that bride looking down, she would be able to see that there is actually a lot more drama going on with her lid.

To get amazing definition from across a huge cathedral or to "pop" in a photo, you are going to need some makeup. The challenge in bridal makeup, of course, is to make sure it does not look like stage makeup. It still has to look gorgeous and soft up close. So makeup in a photo that you think is sooo natural is sometimes just a blown out, diffused treatment.

Bottom line?  Bring those photos; go for it! But trust what you see in the mirror, in natural light, and bring a trusted friend or your mom. Get your makeup done for your engagement photos so you can see how your photographer's style plays with your makeup. I have worked with many wedding photographers in town and I am familiar with how I need to adjust the makeup so it will suit the way they like to shoot. Trust us when we tell you that the camera eats makeup. It takes an awful lot of work to look "natural"!

image, TM photography
makeup, Nancy for BRIDEFace

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Please don't foget your Moms!!-Thoughts by wedding makeup artist Aaron Ellerbrock

Lately I have been getting a lot of questions from "brides-to-be" about whether or not to include the MOB (Mother of the Bride) and MOG (Mother of the Groom) for makeup services. I think this is an excellent question and I would like to put in my two cents here. Mind you, this is just my opinion, but as weddings are what I eat, sleep, and breathe, I think my thoughts have some validity.

First of all the MOG. Uh...YES!!! Please include her. This is the perfect way for you to show your Mother-in-law-to be that you care and want her to be a part of your life. Imagine how she must feel if you do not invite her yet she gets to see all the great photos of you getting ready with your maids! And, especially of your MOB is going to be there, it is important for the in-laws to get a chance to have some time together. By extending the invitation your future Mom knows that she isn't losing a son, but gaining a thoughtful, considerate, and caring daughter.

For the MOB, Uh...YES!! This is a must to do! Now, if your Mom is anything like mine she will probably say, "Don't go to the trouble" or "I really don't wear much makeup" or "Please don't spend your money on me" which in all reality means "I might just die a little inside if you don't ask me to get my makeup done with you on your most important day!!!" Most of our Moms don't want to burden us and they want to make sure our wedding day is perfect. Moms take a back seat to our happiness and this is our chance to let her know how important she is to us. Most of the time, it is not even about getting glammed up. It is just about having one last chance to spend some quality time with you before you begin a new family. PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, make every effort to let your Mom know she is special and that you want her to enjoy the day as much as you do, and there is no better way to do that than to pamper her for a bit.

This is a very easy thing to do, at very little cost, and a gesture that will go miles with the MOB and MOG. Plus the added bonus is they will look stellar in your photos! Don't forget the Moms. They do so much for us and we can give just a little back!

And those are my thoughts!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Beautiful Fall Palettes-Product Review by Makeup Artist Aaron Ellerbrock

Yummy! That is the best word I can use to describe these two palettes I recently picked up. The Kat Von D palette "Ladybird True Romance" is the top one and Urban Decay's "Naked Basics" is the lower one.

Let's start with the Urban Decay. At $27 the price is just about right. I would have preferred to have the shadows a little bigger, but size isn't everything! The payoff of the shadows is what makes this a great deal. I have found lately that with a lot of "luxury" lines I have to work super hard to get any color to show up. With these, you do not need much at all. So even though the shadows are smaller, I will be able to use them for a long time. The other thing about this palette is that they are all flat, no shimmers! I am so excited about this because we are seeing that trend in makeup for the fall. A matte look, but not a flat look. All of the shades in this palette are very wearable ranging from a soft buttermilk color to a rich taupe all the way to a deep grey/black. This is perfect for a quick 5 minute look or you can smoke the eye up for going out!

Next, is the Kat Von D. At $36 it is a bit more expensive than the Urban Decay, however you get 8 shadows (instead of 6) and a beautiful chocolate brown eye liner pencil. The colors in this palette are gorgeous! I especially love the shade, "Cleopatra". It is a warm pumpkin shade and in my research, we are seeing this shade crop up on every runway show at NY Fashion Week. At Sephora, they told me the shade looked amazing on blondes. I however used it on my beautiful brunette model for a recent photo shoot with Richmond Magazine and it blew us all away. The stylist actually wanted me to put more of it on the model as it was sooooo beautiful. With this palette you again get all matte shades and they range from a soft skin-toned pink, to warmer browns, to a deep eggplant and dark chocolate. They glide on like velvet and have a TON of pigment. I love these because often I need a flat shade for a lid that is a little more "mature" and these go on like heaven. I really have not used the pencil, but from playing with it on my hand is very user friendly and easy to apply. It almost feels like silk and it is a long wear pencil!

If you want a quick pick-me-up and want to stay on trend, without having to look too "made up", either of these would be a great choice. I purchased them both at Sephora. I rate the Urban Decay at an 8 and the Kat Von D at an 9. They are both truly spectacular and would be great additions to your makeup wardrobe!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Verlee is Married!!-BRIDEface Richmond Wedding Makeup Artist Aaron Ellerbrock

I am not even sure where to begin with this wedding. I think it is one of the most beautiful I have seen!! The outdoor setting was simple yet elegant. The dress was classic yet retro. The bride was gorgeous AND stunning!!

The below photos are of one of the sweetest and most genuine people you will ever meet; Verlee. I must admit when I posted her engagement photos that we did in April, my mother asked me, "Is she a model?". Now Verlee is not a professional model, but I think you can tell from the shots below she could be! I also want to give a big thank you to Annamarie Akins of Annamarie Akins Photography for these amazing pictures!

Verlee's grace and beauty flow from the pictures and you can see she and Doug are truly in love. I was thrilled to work with Verlee on three separate occasions; her engagement session (where I met Doug and had a blast chatting with him), the wedding, and then a class for Velee's 13 year old sister. Every time we got together, I felt like I was with one of my long time friends.

Another reason why this wedding is so special is because it was the last time I got to work with the very talented hair stylist, Daniel Scate of J Daniel Studio. Daniel very unexpectedly passed away a couple of weeks ago and I will always remember the fun we had working and playing together. He was a passionate artist and a wonderful friend.

I hope you enjoy these photos. They are truly special!

Verlee's attendants all wrote little notes on the bottom of her shoes!

Her eyes seem to tell so many stories.

I don't think Doug's eyes ever left Verlee the entire day.

All I can say is wow!!!

True love!!

Makeup: Aaron Ellerbrock BRIDEface Richmond

Hair: Daniel Scate J Daniel Studio

Photos: Annamarie Akins  Annamarie Akins Photography