For my birthday, my girl friends all clubbed together and bought me my idea of heaven - an afternoon learning everything MAC. So on Wednesday, we all jumped on the train to Newcastle for the ultimate beauty experience. Over the course of a couple of hours, I worked with the absolutely fantastic 'Pink' Sarah at MAC Newcastle, to create a dream make up look. As we are approaching the party season, I went for big gold, glittery smokey eyes and a beautiful dark lip colour - a real Christmas show stopper. Sarah was amazing and I learnt so much, so I've put together this colossal post for you guys, to show of Sarah's incredible work and also hoping that you'll learn a tip or two as well...
Sarah decided to do my eyes first - as glitter shadow tends to have some fall down, it made sense to concentrate on perfecting the base afterwards, rather than having to touch up. When I told Sarah that I wanted a Christmas party look, she was back in a flash with four incredible shadow colours, which together would create my perfect smokey eye for Christmas. To begin with, we prepped my lids using MAC's 'Layin Low' Paint Pot, pushing the product against the lash line to begin with and then buffing the colour outwards with a #239 brush. This creamy beige colour instantly warms up the eyes and keeps the shadow in place with a confident 15 hour wear time. Then we worked through four shadows with the #217 brush, beginning with the lightest colour: 'Vex', which we used to highlight the inner corners of the eyes. Then came my favourite part - the glitter! Sarah couldn't have chosen a better shade in 'Day Gleam', which looks absolutely beautiful in golden glitter. This was pressed all over the lids. Then, we used 'Wedge' to begin the smokey effect. This was applied into the socket of the eye and buffed out using small, circular motions to create a really flawless finish. Then using the same technique, 'Embark' was applied to the very outer corners of the lids, using a very small amount to begin with and then building it up to achieve the desired 'smoke'. This eyeshadow is a gorgeous, reddish brown and really pulled together the warm hues of the overall eye look. To finish, the same colours were applied just underneath the lower lashes, in the same order and using a smaller brush. This just prevents the eyes from looking too 'top-heavy' and instead, appearing softer.
Eyes - Finishing Touches:
After we had done base, bronzer and blush (see below) Sarah bought the eyes to life using liner and mascara. For the upper lash line, she used MAC's BlackTrack Fluid Line, to give a gorgeous, soft fullness to the lashes. This was applied with a tiny MAC #266 brush and pressed against the lashes. Then, we used a pencil in 'Photogravure' to line the bottom waterline, from the outer corner to half way. This mirrored the soft effect of the fluid line on the top lashes. For Mascara, I was lucky enough to try MAC's BRAND NEW 'In Extreme Dimension 3D' which has just been voted No.1 in the country! It really is fantastic and the Y-shaped bristles, separate, lengthen, curl and volumise to give incredible lashes. The plastic wand is small enough to work with in a controlled way and also has bristles on the tip, to really get into the smaller, inner lashes. This is definitely a mascara for your Christmas list!
For Brows, we used MAC's Eye Shadow in 'Omega' which is the perfect colour for me. This was applied with a small, slanted MAC #208 brush, starting at the inner corners of the brows pushing the pigment up in line with the hairs, then slanting the brush and pulling the pigment through the brows to fill in any gaps. This brush is great and gives you so much control.
For Base, Sarah prepped my skin with MAC's Prep + Prime, which is a lovely, silky primer that will help your make up stay on ALL day long, create a smooth base to work on and also relieve any redness. One pump does the whole face - one thing that I was so surprised by was how little of each product Sarah actually used on me. A little goes MORE than a long way! Sarah then applied MAC's Strobe Cream on top of the primer, which wow-o-wow, gets the glow. When it comes to skin, I can't get enough of the natural, healthy 'glow' (for want of another word) which is so easily achieved with this product. It can be mixed in with your foundation, or worn underneath where radiance almost seems to develop as time goes on. As I don't like to wear heavy foundation, we decided to use the Studio Sculpt foundation in NC25. This is a gel based foundation which creates almost a 'second skin' and is popular for use on many of the models during LWF. Once again, a pea sized amount will do your whole face however, it is also a very buildable foundation for days when you want more than medium coverage. This, Sarah buffed onto the skin using the #188 Stippling brush and it really gave such a flawless finish, with such a tiny amount of product. For concealer, MAC's Pro Longwear Concealer was used in NC25 to cover blemishes and any redness, whilst NW20 was used for under the eyes. This concealer is fantastic and I can't get enough of it! Sarah used the tiniest amount, a #224 brush (almost like a slightly larger version of the #217) and in a few small circular motions - my skin looked flawless.
Bronzer and Blush:
Then, we used MAC's Mineralize Skin Finish in Medium, which added a tiny bit more coverage and just evened everything out. Then, the same product in Medium Dark was used as a bronzer. This was applied with a #187 brush, which is your guy if you want a really flawless finish with your powder. Sarah used a tiny bit just to softly contour my face, sweeping the product underneath my cheekbones and across the top of my forehead. It looks so natural and subtle, but really frames the features. Then, with a #168 slanted, fluffy brush, MAC's 'Warm Soul' was used on my cheekbones, just above where we'd put the bronzer. This is a beautiful, rich shimmery pink - again, a product which is really going to get you the glow. Then, MAC's 'Rosy Outlook' was applied on the apples of my cheeks in circular motions and then dragged up and out along my cheekbones. This is a beautiful, natural blush - as the eyes and lips were the showpieces of this look, Sarah wanted the skin to have a very natural, flawless finish to it. Finally, and what is probably my favourite step was highlight. I told Sarah that one of my all time favourite MAC products was the MSF in 'Soft and Gentle' and she said she's soon change my mind with the infamous Vanilla Pigment, which I had heard a lot about. True to say, this loose pigment is SO beautiful as a highlight and buffed into the cheekbones and below the brows. It's a gorgeous, pearlescent almost golden sheen and is nothing but show stopping when it catches the light - a holy grail product in the making and one of my favourites from the entire look. MAC's Prep + Prime Transparent Powder was then applied to keep everything in place, without disturbing any colour.
I am so into dark, bitten, vampy lip colours at the moment, which fortunately, is bang on trend for A|W 13. I actually couldn't decide between three lip colours, so Sarah put together the most beautiful combination which I think brings the look together perfectly. She used MAC's Lip Pencil in 'Vino' to line the lips, starting from the corners and working upwards as this doesn't loose the fullness of the natural lip line. Then, over the top she applied MAC's Cremesheen Lipstick in 'Hang-Up' which is AMAZING! Perfect for this season - I absolutely love it.
Above, is the make up chart where again, you can see the products working together and how they were applied. The eye colours compliment each other perfectly - I came away feeling blissfully happy. Comment below if you'd like me to reproduce the look in a YouTube Video.
I'd like to say a massive thank you to Sarah, who has not only revolutionised my make up routine, but also inspired me to be more artistic and intricate. I wanted to walk away with everything, but thankfully, Christmas is only around the corner, so I've put everything I didn't walk away with on my Xmas list! However, here are some of my 'essentials', favourites from the look and what I took away with me on the day...
MAC Studio Sculpt Foundation NC25 | MAc Pro Longwear Concealer NW20 | MAC Pressed Pigment in 'Day Gleam' | MAC Technakohl Eye-Liner Kajal in Photogravure | MAC #217 Brush
Well done if you've made it to the end! What are your favourite MAC products?