The business of doing lash extensions can be a difficult profession to navigate. These days, there are lash studios popping up all over the place! The good in that is that more people learn what a wonderful service getting extensions can be. The bad in that is that a lot of lash artists don't have the proper training to safely perform such an intricate service. This reality means that the business of lashes easily gets covered up in negative myths and falsehoods. I wanted to bring a few of these myths to light, and explain why they're untrue or avoidable.
"LASH EXTENSIONS WILL MAKE YOUR OWN LASHES FALL OUT."
This is simply not true. I have been doing lashes for years, and have never had anyones' lashes fall out. One thing that clients don't normally know, or think about, is that our lashes grow and shed just like the hair on our head. So, let's say you get lashes, and have to stop after a year; the extensions will shed out along with the natural lashes, and YOU STILL HAVE LASHES.
I will say that it is of utmost importance to choose a skilled artist, who can tell you what length and thickness should be used on the natural hair. If you choose an artist who chooses inappropriate sizes or weight, it can be too much for the natural lash, and repeated application of that type of lash isn't conducive to healthy lash growth.
"THEY CUT YOUR LASHES BEFORE THEY APPLY THE EXTENSIONS."
Oh my gosh, no. No, no, no. Let me explain a very important aspect of my profession. I carefully apply an extension to your lash hair. I do not stick the extension to your skin, I do not stick them together, I do not glue strips on like the ones from CVS (yes, I've actually had someone ask me that). It is a very delicate process, and if well done, can do wonders for framing your eyes!
"I HAVE TO TINT MY LASHES BEFORE GETTING EXTENSIONS BECAUSE THEY'RE BLONDE."
This is also false! Having gorgeous fanned out lashes isn't just for dark haired beauties. When properly applied (see a running theme?) the natural blonde color will disappear into the eyelash extension color, most commonly black. There is no need to do anything pre-extension appointment about the natural color of your lashes.
"LASH EXTENSIONS ALL LOOK WAY TOO DRAMATIC."
Again, this all depends on who you choose for this service. Most lash artists have a personal esthetic, a way they like their result to look. It's imperative that you look at the portfolio of the person you choose and make sure they have some after photos that look like your ideal result. I tend to do more conservative, natural lashes, however, I do have clients who want much more dramatic lashes. The most important thing is that I am able to deliver both conservative and dramatic results properly and consistently for my clients.
I'm hoping these clear up some unnecessary fears about trying the fabulous service that you've been eyeing for a while!
You guys, fall is finally in the air here in Greenville, SC and I couldn't be happier! Are we prematurely breaking out boots and pumpkin spice out? Yes. Is it worth it? Absolutely. Fall is my favorite season for so many reasons. One thing that is often overlooked is the preparation your skin requires during the changing seasons. Just like we switch our closet over to correspond with the coming weather, the same should be said for our skin repertoire! I'm going to list a few of my essential skin health products that keep me feeling and looking fresh all year long!
Hopefully these ideas will give you a jumping off point when thinking about your fall skin health! If you have any questions about these products, leave a comment below.
For many years of my life, all I used was drug store makeup because that is simply all I could afford. Once I started esthetics school, I was introduced to a whole new world of high end products, none of which were in my budget unfortunately! I have, of course, build my stockpile up in the years since I graduated and started my business. I love Glo minerals, Urban Decay, and Tarte! There are, however, still those certain drug store products that I can't do without, so I wanted to share some with you!
This. I use Maybelline Instant Age Rewind every single day and could not love it more! I use it for my horrid under eye circles, to touch up my lip borders with a bold lip, and for a highlighter on the go. Fair is the perfect color for my skin tone, and with a little touch of a finishing powder, this stuff will do the trick for a full day out and about. As an added bonus, it's only about $10!
I have tried Milani Baked Blush in a few different colors and have loved them all! Offering great a color selection range, this $8 blush is pigmented and could easily be mistaken for Nars which runs around $35. My color of choice recently has been Rose D'Oro for summer. I'm almost ready to pick my color for fall!
Rimmel Stay Matte Pressed Powder is my go to for bridal clientele! It's a perfect drugstore find. It keeps your makeup in place all day, absorbs the oils that your skin puts off, and only costs about $5. It comes in a few different colors, but I use the color translucent because it offers no pigment. I mostly just like it to set the foundation.
Milani could take up an entire blog with the array of products you can find right in your local drugstore! I absolutely recommend trying Milani Stay Put brow pomade. It comes with a doubled sided brush, and you can buy it in two colors. For myself, I use the lighter of the two. It truly does stay put and paired with their brow pencil to outline the brow, perfectly shaped brows are a breeze!
Have any of you tried these products? If not and you decide to, please let me know what you think! I'm dying to hear if you love them as much as I do.
You guys!!! I have been trying to take a break from thrifting so frequently because my closet was getting overrun with awesome deals! (is that really a bad thing?) I have been finding a lot of things online and of course, still shopping at my favorite spots. Moving forward, I want to concentrate on building my fall wardrobe around what I saw on the runway at Fashion Week. Here are three of the super wearable trends that were common:
How beautiful are these ruffles?? I love the romanticism of this look. While the middle look is definitely more dramatic and probably wouldn't be seen walking down East Washington Street in Greenville, the idea is just gorgeous. Movement is key in fall! I love the fluidity of the ruffle look, especially when done in an unexpected color. I wouldn't choose the dusty pink color for a fall look right off the cuff, BUT as you will see below, it's a color trend in it's own right! Imagine a beautiful white ruffled shirt with a pair of neutral tan or grey denim and a great pair of booties with a bold lip. What perfect combination!
I love this unexpected look for fall. The yellow is, obviously, more common. However, yellow paired with this dusty pink or mauve is genius. Brunettes definitely have an advantage with this combo, as it may wash us blonde girls out. My absolute favorite of these three is the sheer lace dress with the pop of yellow underneath. I love the more muted yellow or mustard tone on the brunette. This also definitely fits into my fall thought process of layering. I don't think this combination would have as much impact if they were together on one shirt or long skirt. Beautiful, yes; just not as dynamic and modern.
I was so happy to see shades of tan as a trend, because I LOVE neutrals. My closet is dripping with winter whites, greys, black, and browns. I have bought 5 thrifted pairs of boots in the last month, all in shades of tan. Yesssss! From camel to more of a tobacco tone, tans bring a lot of class to any ensemble. I especially love grey and tan together, such as the middle look. That combination can be so beautiful and professional, but also perfect for a casual fall day! And who doesn't love a tan trench coat?
Which of these (or other) trends are you going to try and implement into your style this season??
I love to read reviews of products before I buy them. Buying from Ulta and Sephora is always great because you are allowed to return the product even after you have used it. That makes me feel better about spending a lot more money on higher end products! The less the risk, the better. So, I'm beginning a Product Spotlight series where I'll discuss, in short, a stand out product in my life. This week:
Not Your Mother's Clean Freak Refreshing Dry Shampoo
I use this product every single day, even after I have just washed my hair. I was blessed with very soft, baby fine hair (can you sense the sarcasm) that has absolutely no texture to it. After a wash and conditioner on the ends, I dry my hair and spray this at my root all over my head. It works wonders to give a little lift to my lazy hair.
My hair is also very dry, especially in winter, so I don't wash it every day. However day old hair can sometimes look less than attractive, so I always make sure to spray this to absorb any oils that have made their way from my scalp to my roots. It isn't powdery, smells delicious, and is the best I've found. Some dry shampoos can be visible at the root, or worse, not do anything at all. This is my go- to. Hope you give NYM's a try!
Happy September 1st! This year doesn't seem like it should be 3/4 of the way over, but bring on Christmas!
I don't know about you, but my work has been absolutely crazy. I'm too busy for my own good, and I'm sure most of you are too. I usually post about my business or my favorite makeup, but I wanted to do a quick post about the things that are must haves for me at this point in my ridiculously busy life!
It's a 10 Miracle Super Hold Finishing Hairspray-
This is my go-to hairspray right now. It just takes a little bit to keep my short-but-growing-out hair in place for a really long work day. It smells great and doesn't make my hair feel like straw. Win win!
Dr. Bronners 4-in-1 Sugar Peppermine Organic Pump Soap-
This is what I use to wash my makeup off every night. I used it one evening when I ran out of my regular face wash, and.....I can't do without it now! My skin has never been clearer or more evenly balanced. Love it!
I get my nails done every two weeks when time allows. I'm notorious for getting very bored, but CND Shellac in the color Rubble is my fall back, always and forever! It screams fall (my favorite season) and is so beautifully neutral. I love to do a sparkly accent nail or appliqué to spruce up my mani.
Favorite wedges ever. Hands down! I bought these last year and find myself wearing them in pretty much every season, but doesn't the color just call for fall?? These shoes from Target are comfortable enough to wear for work and cute enough to wear to dinner downtown.
We got our Amazon Echo (Alexa) as a gift from my father-in-law. I had no clue what it was at first. However, we use it now, almost daily!! It's so convenient to listen to music from different artists while I'm cooking dinner and the quality of the speaker is amazing! You can have a weather update, do a workout, and have lots of questions answered. There are many uses for this voice command device.
I bought this NYX Epic Black mousse liner on a whim one day and couldn't be happier with my decision. It glides on with ease, doesn't move all day long, and is easily removable with a face soap at the end of the day. And you can't beat it for the price!
These are a few of my current go to products from my long list of LOVES. Which ones will you try?
Winged liner is an intimidating task to try and accomplish. Just remember: Practice makes perfect! My first time, I did NOT get a great result. But, alas! After years of working at it, I can do it in my sleep, basically.
Here are a few things to keep in mind:
1. Product- I prefer a felt tip liner with a long applicator. I get a more precise line. I have, however, used pretty much every kind of liner available.
2. Aim low- The best trick I've learned! Basically, you place your applicator a little below where you want the top of the liner to be. It gives you room to even and straighten your lines out without ending up with a crazy thick retro liner!
3. Magic eraser- Use concealer and a flat brush to clean up any mistakes you make. Don't worry- you'll make a lot when you're learning!
Below is a quick video of how I do my everyday winged liner. Subscribe and enjoy!
Who doesn't love makeup?! I know I don't need it to survive, but it can definitely be a life raft of sorts. I snapped a photo of myself after filling in only one brow. Ah, the transformation is a thing of beauty! I got a lot of questions about that photo, so I thought I would share some of my favorite products that I used that day. Here they are!
You can click the links above to snag a few of my favorite products! Try them and let me know what you think!
One of the things that most people know about me is that I am a hardcore thrifter. I can't help myself! The deals are just too incredible! Through the years, I've spent many hours culling through many racks of clothing, shoes, belts, and home goods. I seem to have the most luck with clothes! How many kerosene lamps and popcorn makers can one person have?? Ha! I started posting my hauls on Instagram and the stores that I shop at love it! Questions began rolling in about tips and tricks, so I thought I would share some of my strategies with the world :)
Plan of Attack
I have some favorite stores that I frequent, but the most important thing to good thrifting is timing. Pretty much every thrift store has what I call "Deal Days." Generally the deal corresponds to a color coded tag on the item, and can take a percentage off, or can offer the item for a flat price. I know that at my favorite (and most conveniently located store) that special deal day is Wednesday and then the sale runs until Sunday. If the color that week is yellow, all items with a yellow tag are only $1.00. You can't beat it! As a challenge to myself, I NEVER buy any clothing that isn't on sale at this store. Sale at a thrift store, you ask? YES. YES. YES. Think about it: I shop a lot because I barely spend any money (huge perk), and every week my racks to choose from change with the color. It's pretty amazing. Another store that I frequent is a resale shop that offers a loyalty program rewarding you with 20% off of your entire purchase at redemption. That really adds up! All stores are different, so do your research and know the deals!
If you aren't careful, thrifting can become borderline addictive. It offers something to go do after work on a day when you don't want to talk to anyone, the money generally goes to a good cause, and there's always a chance you may find a diamond in the rough just laying there waiting to be scooped up! Your rules may not look like mine, and that's totally cool! Here mine are, just for reference:
-I never buy any clothing that isn't $1.00 at certain stores.
-I never buy anything that wouldn't currently fit me (who needs that kind of negativity?).
-I always check each piece before buying. They almost never offer refunds.
-I always ask: "Do I need this? Do I have anything like it?" Then act accordingly.
-I never go in with expectations. Some days they will be exceeded. Some, not so much.
-I generally trade each new item for a old item, so my closet doesn't overflow.
These keep me in check, keep me focused, and keep my total below $20 for an entire bag of clothes.
Don't Forget The Shoes!!
Second hand shoes gross some people out, and I totally get that! I used to be one of those people. Honestly. I don't know what happened to me. I started thrifting on the reg, and the amazing finds began changing my mind. You can't pass up a pair of boots that retail for close to $200 for $12. They weren't my size, so I resold them to someone who could love and wear them. I don't buy gross platform flip flops or grandmas keds. I'm super picky because, let's face it; when you normally only spend $1 per item, dropping $6-$10 on a pair of suede flats seems insane!
Here are a few of my haul pictures:
I hope this post inspires you to go out and see what you can dig up! There are such great things waiting to be taken home.
Let's talk lashes ladies! In todays world, it is so simple to find someone to do a service and call it a lash extension. We all want beautiful perfect lashes, but all extensions are not created the same way. Navigating through this high dollar industry making smart choices can mean the difference of being thrilled or extremely disappointed with your outcome. Below are a few tips from my experience as a certified lash artist to help you select an industry professional who is perfect for you!
1. MAKE SURE THEY ARE LICENSED AND CERTIFIED
Now, don't get me wrong. Just having a license does NOT mean an artist will do a satisfactory job. What it should mean is that they have received the proper training in individual placement of lashes, safety, and sanitation while providing for their clientele. Finding a great artist means starting with qualifications. Next comes the proof!
2 ASK TO SEE A PORTFOLIO
There is nothing at all wrong with requesting to see someone's work before paying them a significant amount of money in exchange for a meticulous service. Even if a particular professional came highly recommended by a friend or family member, you still want to look over their style to make sure it fits in with what you are imagining for yourself. With lashes, one size definitely doesn't fit all. The composition of the lashes is SO important for the final look. If they're crooked, clumped, or there is too much adhesive used, you won't get a good result.
-Look for clean bases (no clumps)
-Lashes need to start in the tear duct and continue to the very edges
-You want shorter lashes near the nose and the outer corners of the eye
3. ASK ABOUT THE LASHES
With so many different options, choose what is important to you. Are you a vegan? You would want to make sure that you choose synthetic lashes, as these are cruelty free. Do they do volume or individual lashes? I've had clients come to me from other salons who literally knew NOTHING about what they had been paying for. Part of choosing a great artist, is being able to trust their decision making, but you definitely want your desires and requests to be heard. (i.e. length, thickness, curl, volume, etc.). There are also different diameters and degrees of curl. The measurements are represented in millimeters and the curl is coded with letters. See below:
This is when it makes a huge difference to have a lash artist who is tasteful and skilled in selecting the perfect lashes for each client. So many artists get comfortable with one look, however, short thin lashes could definitely not stand up to the 0.3 mm thickness above! You would have breakage and crooked or drooping lashes. NOT GOOD! Another negative of using a lash that is too thick and heavy is poor retention. This brings me to my next point...
4. ASK ABOUT THE ADHESIVE
You can purchase eyelash extension glue on eBay for a couple of bucks. Let's all go ahead and agree that this (basically the equivalent of Lee nail glue) would not be something you would want to pay anywhere from $140- $250 to have applied to your eye area. Unfortunately these cheap adhesives generally contain formaldehyde, which is a cancer causing agent. The fumes can be very unhealthy if you're not in a large and well ventilated space, and these adhesives are much more likely to cause an allergic reaction. Preferably, find someone who uses an adhesive that was manufactured in the USA. If your artist can't answer these questions with ease, move on to the next artist on your list!
5. CHOOSE AN ARTIST YOU GENUINELY LIKE
This one might sound silly, but think about it, girls. You'll be going for bi-weekly fills and spending a good bit of time with this person. Wouldn't that be misery if you truly just didn't get along or have anything at all in common? You also need to be able to have an open dialogue with your artist of choice. I think in this industry, we as artists can get overworked and become so concentrated on completing our day that it's easy to forget to build a rapport with each client. So many of my customers complain about never feeling welcome or important at other salons. In fact, they have been asked to do some pretty unprofessional things to accommodate the artist! That's backwards!! Finding trust with your artist will make all the difference in the world.
Here are a few other little tidbits:
-For the love of lashes....make sure the artist sanitizes and rinses her tools, unless they are prepackaged. Believe it or not, I inherited a client who had never seen any type of sanitization. Ewwww.
-Your artist should tell you to brush your lashes. If they don't, there's a problem. It's a necessity. If you try to brush and can't easily get the brush through from base to tips, RUN!!! They haven't set them properly.
-Enjoy and care well for your lashes. Ask questions and follow directions to maintain great retention! Sometimes, it takes a few times working together to fall into a routine.
Forgiven sinner. Joyous wife of a very handsome man. Blessed mommy of 2 beautiful kids. Lover of all things fashion, beauty, home, and creative.
Tuesday-Friday by appointment only