Happy Valentines Day!
Pretty Easy is all about making pretty, easy! Keep up with daily reports on the latest beauty and fashion trends as well as getting tips & tricks from make-up artist Sarah Lanagan on everything from cosmetics, nails, hair, and new product releases.
Since 1994, the Viva Glam campaign by MAC has been raising funds for children, women and men to prevent the spread of HIV and AIDS as well as help those who are suffering from the effects or aftermath of the disease around the world. The very first lipstick ever produced was a vibrant red which symbolised AIDS awareness and the spokesperson of choice was the provocative star RuPaul who shortly thereafter was joined by singer KD Lang.
Over the past 20 years, MAC have strived to find ambassadors for the Viva Glam campaigns who are not only innovators in their chosen fields, but are seen as remarkably influential to their followers and reflective of our world’s diverse communities.
Singers such as Christina Aguilera, Cyndi Lauper, Lady Gaga, Missy Elliot and Rihanna along with celebrities such as Pamela Anderson and Dita Von Teese are just a handful of those who have joined together to bring attention to an admiral cause spearheaded by one of the biggest cosmetic companies in the world.
It is important to note that all of the profits made from Viva Glam make-up series sales are given straight to the Aids fund and that the purchase of just one lipstick can provide a number of services to those in need including; counseling sessions, AIDS prevention talks, nutritionally tailored meals, stationary kits for orphaned children whose parents died of AIDS and safe sex kits for those who have contracted the virus.
To learn more about Viva Glam and the campaign history and work visit the official website
This cute cartoon pretty much sums up how easy it is to use every day items to get glowing skin! If you’re having a healthy January then the chances are you’ll probably have an avocado lying around so why not give it a new lease of life after you’ve used it for cooking? Avocados contain nutrients that naturally protect skin & hair from harmful UV rays as well as vitamin A which aids in ridding the skin of dead cells for a brighter complexion.
When it comes to foundations choosing the right tone can be tricky which is why generally most women have a few bases lying around in a draw at home that don’t quite match up. Although it is getting better on the highstreet I’ve found (in Ireland and UK at least) that if you’re either very pale or very dark then it can be a bit of a trial finding shades with the best selection tending to be in more high end brands such as YSL, Bobbi Brown and MAC.
Whether it’s because you’re feeling paler during winter or just because it’s the wrong shade there is hope for your mismatched foundation as you can cheat a little by customising it but using a foundation adapter. My favourites are available from make-up artist brand Face Atelier - their range inclues 4 foundation adapters: Zero Minus; a pure white liquid to lighten foundation but keep tone neutral, Zero Plus and Zero Plus Plus (for creating deeper, rich skin tones) and Heat (to give added warmth). These are available in sample size and full size.
Face Atelier is available online from Cloud 10 Beauty
The old saying goes; a bad workman blames his tools but, when it comes to make-up, the tools we use really can make or break a look! After working professionally as a make-up artist for over 12 years I’ve had a chance to try a variety of brushes ranging from the cheap and cheerful to top end, luxury products to those sitting in between and have a mix of each in my professional kit. Here’s my quick guide to finding great brushes if you’re on a budget this January:
1) Catrice: Available for less that €5 in most cases Catrice have a small selection of brushes that are durable and come with shorter handles meaning they fit into your make-up bag easily.
2) EcoTools: As you’d expect these are eco friendly (as well as vegan friendly for anyone who is concerned about animal hair) having been made from recycled aluminium and synthetic fibres.
3) Real Techniques: A favourite of many newly trained make-up artists these are good multi tasking tools as they work with liquids and cream formula make-up products.
4) Models Own Neon: Add a splash of colour with Models Own fun brushes, again very affordable and durable if looked after.
Catrice is available in Penneys and selected pharmacies, Eco Tools, Models Own and Real Techniques are in Boots.
Origins Ginger Burst Body Wash: Deliciously scented, this luxurious shower gel will keep skin hydrated throughout the winter months and infuse your entire bathroom with the lovely zing of ginger every time you use it, helping to lift your spirits and clear your senses in the process.
Clinique Moisture Surge Over Night Mask: Being run down can lead to skin appearing dull and tired but thankfully this little wonder mask can fix that by infusing the skin with moisture over night. The light weight formula sinks into skin & won’t stick to your pillow or hair either!
Rimmel Match Perfection Concealer: When you’re not feeling well still have to drag yourself to work, a good concealer can work wonders. Rimmel’s Perfect Match (unlike a lot of concealers & brighteners) works well when used on it’s own as it’s creamy consistency is easily blended into skin & won’t cause any dryness or flakiness if you’re suffering from dehydration. Basically it can make you look human again, even if you don’t feel it!
Clinique & Origins are available in Arnotts & Rimmel in pharmacies nationwide.
Tasteful, elegant and feminine; these were the first words that came to my mind when I was introduced to the new fragrance collection from AERIN recently. Made up of 5 scents, the appeal of these undoubtedly begins with the beautiful packaging and design but continues as the quality of the fragrances comes to the fore. Although each fragrance is unique there will be one you instantly feel is familiar, for me, that one was Amber Musk, perhaps because of the time of year and the feeling of cosiness it gives. Ikat Jasmine also stood out; the polar opposite to Amber Musk this is clean and fresh and made me think of days where you just get things done.
Also in the collection are Gardenia Rattan; which is like walking through a quintessentially English garden in the summer, Lilac Path; which captures the flowers of Spring and Evening Rose; sweeter than the others this contains a note of blackberry that warms up as you wear it. All the fragrances are available in 50ml bottles for around €110 but there is also a special coffret available for Christmas which contains all 5 for €95.
AERIN is available in Brown Thomas now or you can order online with Selfridges
Shot in the beautiful surroundings of Glendalough and the Wicklow Mountains this beautiful editorial by photographer Veronika Faustmann was one of my favourite photo shoots to work on this year. Currently being featured in Superior Magazine (Germany) the team came over from Hamburg and Berlin to shoot in Ireland last month on a cold and wintery day, although you wouldn’t know that from the images!
Make-up was kept clean and simple with a light foundation, brow gel and just a touch of colour on the lips (Chanel Rouge Noir lipstick) and cheeks (Benefit Hervana), our model Suzana already had curly hair so I gave it added definition and volume at first before adding in Dutch style braids around the crown for texture and visual interest. Nails were given a gothic twist with Marc Jacobs Nail Lacquer in Nirvana; a very deep green.
Photography: VERONIKA FAUSTMANN // Styling: JULIA NEUBAUER @ BIGOUDI // Make-up & Hair: SARAH JANE LANAGAN // Model: SUZANA @ MD MANAGEMENT
See more at: Superior Magazine Digital
Fans of Michael Kors all American glossy style will love the new make-up and beauty collection which is now in Dublin. Exclusive to Arnotts, the Michael Kors make-up range is sure to appeal to fashionable ladies as it is both feminine and glamourous complete with the signature gold packaging and sleek detailing found in both his much lusted after clothing and accessories. Key pieces to keep an eye out for are definitely the nail and lip colours although I have to admit, the whole lot is amazing!
Michael Kors make-up is available in Arnotts Department store now
One of the most frequent questions I get asked as a make-up artist (and general skin care nerd) is how best to conceal/reduce/hide enlarged pores so with this in mind here are some of my tired and tested favourites! To start with, above are two multi award winning skin care products created to refine and smooth skin texture.
Skyn Iceland’s Pure Pore Minimizer is a silicone-free on the spot treatment, specifically designed for ages 30+ this reduces the appearance of pores & shrinks them over time. Top right is Estee Lauder’s Idealist Pore Minimizing Skin Refinisher - a cult classic for good reason, the golden flecked serum leaves an instant, beautiful glow to skin and with continued use refines skin texture to appear smoother, brighter and younger. Although neither are marketed as make-up they work well as primers underneath foundation.
For those who are very conscious of their skin, primers are undoubtedly the fastest way to conceal enlarged pores and these 3 really deliver as far as results go. BECCA’s Resurfacing Primer is perfect for oily/problem skin, it does exactly what it says on the tin providing a velvety matte, smooth canvas for foundation to glide over. Benefit’s Pore-Fessional is a unique balm that can be used under orover foundation for top ups during the day - what’s not to love about that? Lastly, a serious make-up artist favourite; Smashbox Photo Finish Primer. This light weight primer suits all skin types and blends seamlessly into skin for a flawless complexion day and night.
New to Ireland this year Young Blood mineral cosmetics are tipped to become a firm favourite with make-up lovers who want great products that are also kind to their skin. Although relatively unknown this side of the pond the brand is huge in the USA with celebrity fans including Jessica Alba, Gwyneth Paltrow and Jennifer Aniston who are all famed for their fresh faced glow and natural take on beauty.
The cruelty free make-up collection is full of great products for creating the perfect base with my favourite being the original primer and liquid foundation, both just glide over skin leaving a soft, velvety finish. Also popular are the mascara, eye shadows and hydrating lipstick colours which are all well pigmented and rich in colour. The mineral and natural base of all the products means that they are particularly good for anyone who suffers from sensitive skin, dryness or acne as they allow your skin to breathe during the day.
In much the same way that BB Creams were popular for years in East Asia before becoming a massive hit this side of the world, Micellar Cleansers; a skin care staple for women in France, are being hailed as the next big thing here in Ireland and UK. Sounds good - but what is a Micellar Cleanser? Basically it is an all-in-one product that removes make-up, cleanses and tones skin meaning that it is a really fast way to both start and end the day (which we all love).
There is a large degree of science behind the formulations involving molecules and chemical reactions but ultimately it’s the results most women are after, and these deliver quick, effective ones that leave skin feeling refreshed and supple. Micellar Cleansers, including the ones pictured above from NARS, Darphin & La Roche Posay are suitable for sensitive skin and eyes as they don’t irritate skin or strip it of any natural oils or water in the epidermis. The fact they are all-in-one makes it a great product for traveling too and fewer jars & bottle in the bathroom mean looking after your skin is more purse friendly too!
La Roche Posay is available in selected pharmacies nationwide, NARS in Brown Thomas and Darphin online from Amazon.co.uk.
The new Smashbox Fade to Black collection is one that I (and my fellow beauty bloggers) have been lusting over for the past little while. Small but perfectly formed this capsule make-up collection for Autumn/Winter 2013 has everything you could need to create long lasting, classic looks. As investment make-up goes, its definitely worth a look.
Included in the new Fade to Black collection are: two waterproof eyeliners available in either Blackest Black or Gold Black as well as two new Be Legendary lipsticks in the shades Cognac and Black Cherry that will compliment any skin tone. Most exciting perhaps though are the Fade In and Fade Out eye palettes; these house 7 shades each in a selection of cool or warmer tones depending on your eye colour. Both have enough range of shades to be able to create anything from a naturally contoured eye to dramatic smokey eyes.