Thursday, July 18, 2019

Running Late For Work ?Need a Fast Makeup Routine?

We have all been there, that pesky moment where we wake up to realize that our alarm didn't go off, or we just cant get the kids to cooperate and out the door in time ! 

So how can you still be running late and have time to brighten up your face and apply makeup?

Below are some recommendation of products that are easy to apply and quick fixes to looking awake for your day! 

One product every girl should have is a tinted moisturizer. Many brands of makeup make them and they are definetly something that will come in handy on those rushed mornings. 

Lip gloss is key. No matter how much makeup you have on or dont have on, if you have a lipgloss to brighten up your natural color lips a bit. you will look as though you werent in a rush for the day. 

Monday, November 19, 2012

Formal Event Makeup ! How to Decide ?

Hi All,
I know it has been some time since I have blogged. I promised a lot and I am absolutely going to deliver that. However life took over, my makeup career took off to a new level, and there have just not been enough hours in the day for it all. I also work full time, and my days/ weekends have been insane this year with weddings, events, galas, parties, photoshoots, fashion shows, & just finding time for family & friends. So I am going to be posting some new blogs, and wanted to start it off with an honor I received back in June from the Museum of Fine Arts - Boston.

The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston approached me about donating my makeup services for their Summer Solid Gold Party where the benefits go to the Museum Council Artists in their Residency Program as well as some local charities. It was a shocking surprise and an honor that I was chosen to be apart of this. It was such a fun great night, I brought my best friend with me and we had a blast !  This was a Black tie event & With the holidays just around the corner, formal events are going to be coming about !So this is  going to lead into my next discussion .... how one should wear their makeup for a formal event !

Ok girls we all know, we need to get the dress, the shoes, the jewelry, the right clutch, and we cant forget about the hair! But a lot of times people never put that much effort into thinking about the right makeup to complete the look. Whether it be a black tie affair, a wedding, your wedding, a formal cocktail hour, prom, etc. So here are some tips on the best ways to figure out what makeup look goes best with the theme of your overall look.

                                            The Process:
Once the gown/ dress is picked out, jewelry, shoes, the bag, we usually start to think about the hair. Which is definitely a must. But once you have decided the hair theme, up, down, half up, curly, straight, pinned and wavy, etc. you have to start to think about the theme of your look and what feature of your face you would like to pop more. Your eyes? your lips ? both ?  ..... so how do you go about deciding on makeup ?As you see in the pictures to the left. I chose to wear a very simple, elegant sweetheart neck gown, with a little bit of a jewel embellishment. After that was set I decided that I wanted an old Hollywood glam hair look. Swooped over and big curls, nothing crazy. So how do I know what type of makeup goes with this ? well I look at everything from the color of the dress, to my skin tone, my hair color, and the season. 

Christine Hendriks & Natalie Lelless

Step 1: Think about your daily makeup and what you are comfortable wearing. We don't want you to look like a crazy person because this is a formal event. The goal is to make you look like you, enhanced, but also flowing nicely with the theme of your overall look. So this is where you need to decide, is my dress classic looking? is it daring? high fashion? what have I decided on for hair ? am I willing to wear color on my lips ? or would I rather just my eyes pop out? I could have easily done a red lip and neutral eyes to go with my old Hollywood hair theme, however with a dress that is really a very light lavender color and it being June I opted for the same type of look more modernized. With a grey smoky eye and a coral lip.

MFA Council Member Ken Bonnano

Step 2: Once you have decided what you are comfortable with and what you think would go nicely with the color of your dress, hair, and skin tone. Then its time to play around a bit with makeup ! If you are not good at doing your own makeup or just lost as to what to do, I suggest making your way over to your local department store to get a free consultation. You can always hire a makeup artist like myself  for the event as well. This way you have a consultation before hand and then you don't have to worry about knowing how to do your makeup the day of, or start googling makeup theme looks on the Internet. However if you just don't have it in your budget to hire someone, or time to get over to the mall, here are a couple of tips:

Smokey eyes: Smokey eyes are always a great makeup look for a night out on the town. They will take any normal daily look to a high fashion glam one. However this does not mean you have to use black or really even know how apply a smokey eye. Get into your makeup case, take out all your shadows. Do you have a dark green ? do you have a dark grey ? dark purple ? even a dark brown ? Remember lavenders bring out green eyes and golds bring out blue. Start by using a neutral base coat all over the eye lid. On the lid put the next lightest color. Then in the crease take the darkest color you have and fill the crease with that, now take that color from the outer corner of your eye just to mid center of your lid and fill it in. Highlight from right under your brow bone to the crease of your eye with another light shimmery color. Gold, or a light silver work great, then use some black or dark brown liner to line the top lid. Line the bottom lid with the same and if you are scared of smudging the liner to get the smokey eye look take that dark color you put in the crease, line over the eyeliner and finish with mascara!

Red Lips : Red lips are something that I hear a lot of people telling me they are afraid of. However wearing red lipstick to a formal event not only makes people's heads turn, but it also gives for a very confident classy look. Make sure to see if this goes with the theme and coloring of your dress as well. Red lips can be applied a couple of different ways. Always make sure to line your lips first. You can use a neutral liner as opposed to a red one if you are not used to wearing liner. Start by coloring your entire lip in with liner. Then take the red lipstick and apply making sure all of your lip has been touched by the color. Some people prefer a matte red look, and some like the glossy red look. If you are going matte the only next step I recommend is to have a little bit of lip balm on you, as the matte lipstick will start to dry out. You can just dab some on from time to time and your lips will killer all night. However if you want more of a glossy look, either buy a red lip gloss that matches the red lipstick you used, or what I suggest is buying a clear lip gloss, just a apply a few dabs over and walla ! you have a very confident, sexy, classy Red lip for your formal event. Don't forget Red lips can take any casual outfit and spice it up a bit!

Either of these looks will get you that evening look you have been wanting !

Product Recommendations: For smokey eyes I love to use two products, especially on people that are not used to wearing a lot of makeup. For the crease I love to use M.A.C eye shadow in Satin Taupe or Green Smoke. For lip liner I recommend Smashbox waterproof lip liners in matching skin tones. For red lips I recommend NARS matte lipstick in Vezuvio. This red will go great with many skin tones and complexions.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

That's a Wrap!

Hey Everyone,
Today I wrapped up the 1.5  day photo shoot that I was chosen to go to LA to do makeup for. It was such an amazing opportunity and experience and I am so thankful for it. It was very educating as well and gave me more of an appreciation for what I love to do. I also have the utter most respect for the clients that have to do photo shoots and how hard it is for them to work at making sure they get the perfect shot. Sure the beauty team makes them up to look the way they do, so how hard can it be ? right? Well I have to say standing in front of a camera for hours posing and smiling, or dealing with fans blowing on you, or water being thrown in your face to get that sexy wet look, is not as easy as it seem and it makes for a long tough day for everyone ! I also have to say it was a pleasure getting to work with everyone, & the clients that this photo shoot was for, were not only kind, down to earth, and complimentary towards everyone, they were also very appreciative of all the hard work that was put in !

I was not allowed to take pictures inside the studio while on set,  but below are pics of outside the studio. Enjoy and thanks for following !!
Smashbox Studios Lot 2
Stage 2

After a Break Arriving back on Set

Parking for cast & crew only!

Smashbox Main Studio Offices

Stage 2 again
That's a Wrap, all packed up & ready to leave! So grateful for the opportunity !



Friday, May 11, 2012

A Photo Shoot in LA ? Um Yes Of Course!!!!

Hi Everyone,
Today I had the opportunity to go to LA and take part in a celebrity photo shoot at one of the Smashbox Studios in West Hollywood. It was such a great experience and honor! Most people however dont really understand the work that is involved in a photo shoot. From lighting, to cameras, to hiring the right photographers, beauty team made up of Hair, Makeup, and wardrobe, so many details go into making the shoot run smoothly.

I got to experience this all first hand. My call time was 5:45 am. When I arrived I was given 30 minutes to set up my station, make sure that I had all the makeup tools & supplies I needed, make sure my brushes were sanitized,and that I was ready to go. (Hair and makeup are essential during photo shoots, you only have one time to get the look right, then the rest is just reapplying and touching up. Sometimes you even have 2,3, 4, or more looks to apply, and making sure you are on your A game is essential.)First the peron or persons being shot arrive on set. They are immediately greeted from the production team, then they go right over to wardrobe. This is where they make sure that the clothes they have picked out for the shoot ahead of time have properly been fitted and are still the clothing of choice, or if its a last minute shoot, this is when they pic out what they are wearing. Next they go over to hair, this is for people who need to have their hair set for when its time to actually do it. As their hair is setting they then usually get into the makeup chair. Once that is finished with, its back into hair to finish the look, then wardrobe, and then its time to shoot!!!

My job at this point becomes the touch up girl ! I have to make sure that the makeup is highlighted correctly for the lighting, and which ever way the person being shot turns, I have to make sure that its picking up the right colors. Being under so much lighting, can also cause the skin to look shiny or the person being shot may be sweating a little. So I have to always be on my toes looking out for this. The hair team has their responsibilities during this time as well. Once they think they got the right shot, its then back in the chair for makeup retouch, hair retouch, and then wardrobe change. At this point sometimes they want to do a completely different look. So it starts from square one again, except at this point, the makeup artist has to remove the makeup and start over ! Aside from making the person that is being shot look the way they do, so much more goes into a smooth running photo shoot. You have the production team, the photographers, the managers, the PR people, the lighting people, the studio set team, etc. I know that many people see magazine covers and are not really aware of all it takes to get that person looking that way and that perfect shot, & it can take hours to get the correct one. I dont think many people realize how much it entails. So Im posting about it to educate a little more.

I have worked on photo shoots in the past, but this one was not only an honor to be apart of but extra special because I was there on behalf of one of the companies that has helped make me into the makeup artist I am today and continuing to become. If you would like to learn more about the Smashbox Studios here in LA & Boston please go to You can also check out some of the famous shoots that have taken place in their studios.

All images provided by Smashbox Studios Inc.


Thursday, April 26, 2012

Need a Great Makeup Gift for Your Makeup Mom? .. Mother's Day is Close!

Hi Everyone,
I know I promised my next post would be how to pick the perfect shade of red for spring & summer, and it will be up soon I promise, however I wanted to share this exciting new customized makeup kit and promo for Mother's Day from Smashbox Cosmetics!

A One of a Kind Mother's Day Gift:
For Mother's Day Smashbox is selling create your own makeup kits for Moms, with 20% off ! This is a one of of kind gift to give and the best way to get your mom in the hip trends of makeup, and not spending money on gifts you are not sure she will use, or love! With this customized kit, you can pick out the products you think your mom will use, already does use, or some you think she should try out. If you are not sure what products she should use, what she may like, or what type of style she portrays, Smashbox has broken down their makeup kits to reflect 5 categories that define the styles our Moms have. Once you chose which mom you are, have, or want to see her become, you can then customize the kit to the products you want:

1. Fashion Mom
2. Boho Mom
3. Hip Mom
4. Executive Mom
5. On- the- Go Mom

So go ahead and make your mom into the makeup fashionista you know she is, was, or will be!  or if you want to pick one up for yourself! Please go here to check out this exciting offer !

I just had to share !

Blogging soon on how to pick your favorite shade of Red ! I Promise !

                                                                                                  Thanks for following! 
                                                                                                                           - Natalie

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

On a Budget? Here are some free tips on discounts on your favorite beauty supplies!

Every person has a budget. They have rent to pay, mortgages, car payments, incidentals, bills galore, etc. But most people don't factor in things like makeup & cosmetics. So what happens when you realize you have run out of your favorite $25.00 mascara that you got as a gift ? or you have always wanted to try that cool new M.A.C lip glass and spending $14.50 on one seems outrageous? Below are some tips on how to obtain discounts on your favorite makeup brands !

Everyone is always telling me that they love my makeup but just cant afford it. Of course I do get a huge discount on the 3 vendors that I use, but when I didn't get a discount, or when I want to obtain another brand I don't get discounts on, I too sigh at the price tags on some of the brands. Higher end brands of makeup typically cost more than the pharmacy store brands like Maybeline and Cover Girl, even though many of their products are just as amazing as the ones you find at the Chanel counter or in Sephora. However no matter what your budget allows for when it comes to the silly things like, moisturizers, makeup, hair supplies, etc. every person can enjoy the well known brands and not have to pay out the whazoo for them!

Here are some tips to be able to obtain discounts for makeup, lotions, & beauty supplies:

Sephora VIB Members: Whether you shop at Sephora yet or not, you can obtain a Beauty Insiders card from your very first purchase or sign up online. Even if this only means you are buying perfume, or lotions, you will get points towards becoming a VIB member. Once you have spent over $350.00 in one year you will automatically be entered into their VIB program. The perks you ask ? Aside from VIB coupons that you will receive every so often from 10% to 40% off of products, you will also get more free samples of makeup, access to makeup sets that only the VIB members can purchase, your the first to know of new brands or products coming out, you always get a free birthday gift in your birthday month, (which I have to say I have never been disappointed with), and you are eligible for free makeovers when they have those type of events. And who doesn't like a free makeover? The Sephora VIB program is incredible, and one of the best when it comes to the perks. So sign up today to be apart of their Beauty Insiders Rewards and start earning points to becoming that Very Important Beauty Insider that you are! Please go to the link below:

Ulta Rewards: Ulta is another store that not only sells high end brands of makeup, but also makeup you would find in the pharmacy stores, hair supplies, lotions, perfume, nail polish, and they also have a full service salon .There are two ways of obtaining rewards from Ulta. One is their Ultamate Rewards Program, and the other is The Club at Ulta Rewards Program. Both offer significant discounts and conveniences. You will get free coupons in the mail, earn points towards free rewards, and like Sephora, get free samples when ordering online. Please go here to check out and sign up for the Ulta Rewards, or stop in to an Ulta Store near you:

Smashbox Rewards: One of my favorite vendors I use when doing makeup is Smashbox. They are sold in Sephora stores, as well as Ulta, sometimes there is even a counter at Nordstroms. All of those discounts from those places work on their products. You just have to read and make sure that they are not excluded from the promotions at the time of purchase. However being a Smashbox Pro, I do recieve a ton of discounts and conveniences on this brand. So how can you as well ? If you sign up for the Pretty Points Rewards Program you will receive the following benefits:
  • Exclusive access to Lets do Lunch promotions and Final Call (sale) products
  • Free Rewards Certificates
  • Free Birthday Gift
  • Free Gift on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
  • Bonus Deluxe Samples
On top of the normal free shipping and free sample with every order! Its a great way to shop for Smashbox products and enjoy the benefits of them! Please go to this link to sign up for the Smashobox Pretty Points Program:

M.A.C Perks: Unless you are a M.A.C Pro, most of the time you will not see M.A.C products on sale or discounted. However one thing that most people don't know about is the Back to M.A.C Program. Once you obtain 6 primary packaging containers, that are empty, you can mail them in or bring them to your nearest M.A.C store and you will receive your choice of a free lipstick, lip glass, or eye shadow. This could be an eyeshadow container, a lip gloss, lipstick, foundations, powders, blush, anything that comes in a primary packaging container. Check it out online or go to your local MAC store for more details:

Tip: This will only work if you bring them in to a M.A.C store or mail them in from the online address. Unfortunately the counters in Macy's, Nordstroms, Lord & Taylor, Saks, Neiman Marcus, etc. will not be able to provide you with the free stuff.

These are just some tips on ways to get discounts on your favorite brands of makeup and cosmetic supplies. There are many more ways to save on cosmetics and every brand is always trying to get their names and products out there. Check out your favorite brands websites for their discount programs, and always keep a lookout for any discounts or promotions you can find!

Free Makeup Tip: I know a lot of times people often wonder if a product is really right for them. If they will like it, if their skin will react well to it, and if its truly the right color for their skin tone. You can always purchase a product and return it before the end of use for another one or your money back if it is not to your liking. However one tip that everyone should know is that if you do not want to spend the money up front on something you are not sure about, all you have to do is ask for a sample of the product. This will help you to see if its truly right for you, and every makeup brand is willing to give a small amount to prove just how good their products are. So next time you are in Sephora and just don't know if what you are looking at is right, ask one of the girls for a sample. This will last you anywhere from 2 weeks to a month and will help you determine if this product is right for you !

Something Extra: I talked a lot about being a Smashbox & M.A.C. Pro. If you would like information to see if you are eligible to become a Pro and get discounts on products, classes, free makeup tips, beauty trends, & more please go to the following links:

Coming up next: How to Choose Your Perfect Shade Of Red For Spring

Thursday, March 22, 2012

To Brow or Not to Brow ? That is the Question ?

Let's start this thing off right ! One of the biggest makeup/ beauty trends of the 2012 season is brows! I am not just talking any brows, I'm talking, old Liz Taylor from the 60's bold, full, defined, beautiful eyebrows. So the question is, to brow or not to brow ? Well I say let's brow !

Eyebrows are a feature of your face that are not only striking, feminine, & beautiful, but are a focal point for your eyes. Making sure they are brushed, arched, waxed, and taken care of properly, is a must! The new trend in brows for 2012 reminds me of older times, when style icons like Liz Taylor & Sophia Loren, were known for their eyebrow's shape, fullness, darkness, and definition. The eyebrows of the '60s were definitely hard to miss, with most eyebrows being shaped to have a high arch, and then filled in with a black or brown eye pencil for that bold striking look, it was hard to not focus more on the eyebrows of style icons than the clothes. Some women even went as far as shaving their brows off to be able to apply false eyebrows to look like these famous stars. So how can we get this look without going to the extremes of waxing your eyebrows off and applying fake ones? Below is a step by step process of how you can achieve this new trendy look! With a little help from a brow pencil, shadow or brush, and toning down on how often you wax, pluck, or thread, you too can look like Liz Taylor from her days as Cleopatra !

Step 1: Talk with your groomer about your eyebrows and the look, shape, and fullness you want to achieve. They may recommend only coming every other month instead of your regular monthly visit, that way your brows will grow in a little more and become fuller with out losing their shape. Figure out a plan that works best for you.

Step 2: Start with a brow pencil or brow shadow & brush. Pick a shade lighter than your normal brow color. You will want this slightly lighter because as you fill in and add color your brows will become darker, and we don't want them looking over the top unnatural, compared to back then, this new trend is a more subtle look.

Step 3: If you have not had time to see your groomer, try to define your shape by holding the brow pencil/ brush tip up and aligning this with the corner of your nose and inner edge of your brow. Now hold this where your brow begins (or make a dot if that helps you more). Angle your pencil or brush, and start to fill in your brows with light, feather like strokes moving upwards along the arch and line of your brow. Do this as many times as you wish to define the color and thickness you desire.

Step 4: You will want to comb your brows upward with a refined eyebrow comb, or lash comb. Then seal the look with either the wax that is with your brow shadow, or a brow finishing gel.

Step 5: Apply a little bit of highlighting concealer, or a shimmery shadow right under the arch of your brow, and along the base of it to highlight and define your new bold, full, brow look ! Repeat steps 1 through 5 for the other brow.

Example of the look: Here is a picture I found that shows how the new trendy brow look can be achieved but still look chic and not too over the top! Please excuse the non smiling! :)

Free Makeup Tip: As a Makeup artist I always make sure no matter who I am doing makeup for, whether it be a night on the town for one of my friends, my daily makeup, a bride for her wedding day , or a model for a photo shoot, that they have their eyebrows defined as much as possible, without taking away from their look. So if you are daring enough to try this new trend out, just continue to brush and sweep your brows a couple of times over until you have achieved your desired full brow look! However, if you are not looking to try this new trend out, I still recommend everyone define their eyebrows even for the everyday look, with a pencil that is the same shade or a shade lighter than their brows. Your brows define your face and can actually change your look completely. By making sure they are defined on a daily basis, you will start to notice that your eyes are popping more and your whole makeup look is complete.

Recommendation of product: One of my favorite brow pencils is the Brow-tech To Go by Smashbox ! This very creative pencil comes in two shades, Taupe and Dark Brown. It will work with any one's hair color, it is easy to use, and can be taken with you anywhere. There are many great eyebrow products on the market, but the reason this one is my favorite is because you barely could mess up the application, its not messy at all like some eye brow products, it has a soft hold gel on the opposite end for a complete polished look. You also don't have to worry about losing the brow brush, & its waterproof, so it lasts all day! Check it out @:

Coming this month: Stay on the lookout for whats coming this month !

  • How to Chose Your Perfect Shade Of Red For Spring
  • Want to Achieve that Modern Trendy Cat Eye Look? Here's How!
  • First Featured Vendor Spotlight: For my first Vendor Spotlight I will be featuring Award Winning Wedding Photographer Leah Haydock of Leah Haydock Photography ( for all my brides to be, this one is a must read) check her out prior to my post at and tune in for a Q&A session with one of New England's Best Wedding Photographers. She has been featured in magazines such as the knot Boston , Style Me Pretty, and Seacoast Weddings, and now I have the honor of featuring her on here ! So please keep a lookout for this one !