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Posted by 09.22.13

A lover of all things mid-century, Lynsey Le Keux founded Le Keux Events after finding it hard to source supplies and accessories for her own vintage wedding in the UK. Since going into the wedding planning business, she has added organizing burlesque and dirty dancing nights for bachelorette and bachelor parties, in addition to other special events. Once again, necessity required the multi-talented Le Keux to teach herself vintage hairstyling for promotional photo shots, and ultimately opened Le Keux Vintage Salon in Birmingham, England, and Sugabillys pin-up model agency in 2010. In 2012, she launched Le Keux Cosmetics, knowing exactly what her customers need to create the vintage looks they so desire.

Your makeup line as well as your events company are inspired by styles of the past. Why do you love vintage so much, and what era particularly speaks to you.

Firstly, it’s the aesthetic of mid century design that I love, whether its kitchenalia, atomic fabric patterns, or perfectly polished hair, I’ve always been drawn to the colors and looks of those eras. The fifties is my absolute favorite era; I love rockabilly music and style and Americana—diners and such like, and the cars! My favorite beauty looks are big victory rolls and curls, think Wanda from Cry Baby meets Bettie Page, with bold eyeliner flicks and red lips.

What eras and hairstyles are popular with your clients at the Le Keux Vintage Salon?

Victory rolls are hugely popular in the salon, along with traditional curl sets such as a Rita Hayworth wave or bombshell curls like Marilyn Monroe. Classic 30s inspired marcel waves are also popular for our bridal customers, its so pretty and glamorous for your big day.

As far as creating a vintage makeup look, what are the key components?

The great thing about the classic vintage look is that its achieved with a simple makeup kit. Matte complexion is essential with a peachy blush. Eyebrows are a key element of vintage looks too, and shaded correctly can really frame your face and polish off the look. Eyeliner flicks are next, focusing color on the top lid only, drawn at an angle toward the edge of your brow is super flattering. And finally red lips of course, pillar box red is best and blue tone reds tend to suit all skin tones and colorings. This was the inspiration for our three products, a bright red, flexible lip color that can be worn matte or glossy for a Hollywood finish, peach lip and cheek paint, and true black liner with staying power and smooth application. Your brushes are also a key part of achieving the look, firm, high quality fibers are best, and look into the types of brushes your need for each product.

Any secrets for maintaining a bold red lip throughout the day, without feathering or staining everything in sight?

My trick is to apply, blot, apply, and then seal with translucent powder. Like all your makeup, sealing it helps with staying power and blotting compacts the color pigment and removes excess moisture which you might “wipe” off.

Any words of wisdom regarding starting a business, and following your passion?

I always say “discover what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.” When starting a business, let your love of it lead over a desire to be super rich. Do your research and be honest with yourself about true demand for what you want to offer, and be true to your brand. I wear our makeup range every day so when I sell it to customers I know its something they will love and truly perform for them.

What’s next for Le Keux?

It’s exciting times with new ranges for our makeup and brushes currently in development. We’re also launching into men’s stag parties and grooming, all vintage themed of course. And we’re opening new salons across the UK too!

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Posted by 08.12.12

Although she initially thought she would pursue the corporate side of beauty, Kimara Ahnert’s professional plans changed when she took a post-college summer course in makeup artistry. A childhood love of doing makeup—inspired by her mother’s career as a doll artist—proved to still be a passion, and Kimara gave up her corporate dreams in favor of a career as a makeup artist. After gaining experience by working as an assistant to a makeup artist in New York City, she realized that she wanted to create a makeup studio where the ambiance greatly differed from the department store cosmetic counter—a goal that she achieved in 1997 with the opening of her makeup and skincare studio on Madison Avenue, Kimara Ahnert New York. Today, Kimara’s team of makeup artists and aestheticians are among the top experts in the industry, offering women the opportunity to look their best in a beautiful, fresh, effortless, and natural way.

How does your makeup collection differ from what else is on the shelves today?

My makeup collection differs from others on the shelves today, especially with my eye shadows. The Kimara Ahnert eye shadow collection includes a variety of matte and shimmer shadows, perfect for any season and occasion.

If I had to use one word to describe my makeup collection, it would be “options.” Many other branded lines have eye shadow palettes that are already combined with different shades. The problem with those palettes are that you actually only end up using one of the three or four shades included in the palette. We offer magnetic palettes, called the Kimara Ahnert Custom Eye Shadow Refill, which can be customized with your favorite shade or shades. We also offer a magnetic beauty box that can hold everything you need; including eye shadow, blush, bronzer, foundation and/or powder. Since the Kimara Ahnert Makeup Collection offers so many of these options, you only need a few staple beauty products to look great each day!

What does your own personal beauty regimen consist of?

My beauty routine has gotten quicker and easier, especially since I have become a mother. I have a five-year-old son, so it’s important that I speed up my beauty routine every morning. My look on-the-go always includes concealer under the eyes.

For my face, I use a few of the products in my makeup line; Kimara Ahnert Radiant Glow Tinted Foundation with SPF 30, Kimara Ahnert Mineral Bronzer on my cheekbones and the Kimara Ahnert Cremewear Blush in a pink shade.

For the crease of my eyes, I use the same Kimara Ahnert Mineral Bronzer that I use on my cheekbones; it’s a double-duty product! I then use a blue or white eyeliner pencil on the inside lower rim of my eyes. I finish off by using Dior Show Azure Blue mascara on my eyelashes.

For my lips, I like to use T. Le Clerc’s mini-sized lip glosses. I keep them everywhere, like in my purse, jackets and in the bathroom. They are great for on-the-go and provide the perfect pop of color!

Aside from my makeup routine, I think it’s important to keep my hair routine simple, as well. A friend of mine introduced me to the Denise Richards Volume Extend Collection by Cristophe and now I use the products every day! I like to use the Volumizing Spray at the root of my hair before blow drying to give my locks an instant boost.

What are the most common complaints/concerns you hear about from clients and what advice do you give them?

The most common complaint and concern that I hear from my clients is about their under eye circles. I always give the same advice: they must wear a good concealer to cover up those bags! I recommend crème concealers. Crème concealers can be applied easily by painting the under eye with a brush. After applying, lightly pat the concealer to blend with your finger tip or a damp sponge.

What is your beauty philosophy?

My beauty philosophy is that everyone looks better with makeup, but makeup does not have to look like it is painted on the face. Nowadays, makeup has become so obvious—everyone knows when someone has makeup on. It’s best to go with a more natural look.

What are your favorite looks/styles right now in makeup?

My favorite beauty trend at the moment is matte and I am so thrilled that matte makeup is back! I love the look of clean eyes in a matte shadow accented with a classic black/brown or charcoal liner. For a “wow” factor, apply false lashes. Some of my favorite false lashes are Vincent Longo La Dolce Vita Lash Tips. They look so natural and work well with any matte makeup look.

I also love the look of flawless matte skin with blush applied to the ball of the cheek finished with a matte lipstick in either a red or soft rose brown shade. These looks mimic classic, old Hollywood glamour. The matte makeup trend reminds me of how my grandmother looked, even when she went to the grocery store; classic and simple yet beautiful.

If you were stranded on a deserted island, what would be the one beauty product you’d have to have?

If I were stranded on a deserted island and could only bring one product, it would be a tinted moisturizer with SPF. My favorite is the tinted moisturizer from my collection, Kimara Ahnert Mineral Tint SPF 20 Foundation. I have very fair skin and need SPF protection each day, so by using a tinted moisturizer with SPF, I hopefully would look as young leaving the deserted island as when I did when I arrived there!

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Posted by 05.06.12

From commercials to films to Broadway shows and magazine covers, celebrity makeup artist Jacqui Phillips has done it all, developing a repertoire of high profile clients including celebrities, politicians, and models.

The chaotic, competitive world of freelance beauty services can be challenging, but Jacqui has set herself apart through her expert work. In addition to makeup services, Jacqui has appeared on numerous television programs and has contributed beauty columns to such magazines as GQ, Time, and People. She is also the NY Makeup Expert for the Examiner.

Certified in custom airbrush tanning and eyelash extensions, Jacqui is the owner of Jacqueline Pasquale Beauty, a bridal and beauty spa specializing in those services. Jacqui’s newest entrepreneurial endeavor is a new cosmetics line, Angel Girl by Jacqui Phillips Cosmetics.

What made you want to get into the field of makeup artistry?

I always loved doing makeup!  It came very naturally to me. I did my cousins makeup for her wedding when I was 9 years old.  Yes that’s right 9 years old.  I actually fell into doing makeup by way of modeling. I modeled during college and after college and I was doing a photo shoot in New York City and the makeup artist did not show up for work. The photographer asked me if I could try to do the makeup myself so we wouldn’t lose the day of work.  He ended up loving what I did and started hiring me to do other photo shoots. Within a month I went to Europe to work as a makeup artist and I never looked back.  Modeling is lonely, isolating work. But being a makeup artist is about connecting with people, creative people who appreciate my talent, and positive energy.  In fact, I’ve been told, it’s not just the way I make them look, but the way I make them FEEL that has me requested over and over again.

What are your favorite looks/styles right now in makeup?

I am always very attracted to the classic looks.  I love a beautiful bold lip, but it is always a lot of fun to put a little sparkle gloss in the middle of the lip to enhance that pout and make the lips really pop.

I also love a bold eye that is enhanced by eyeliner.  This look is very in style right now and there are a lot of great liquid liners on the market that make it so much easier to accomplish this look.

Do you notice any trends that clients are frequently asking for?

Clients are always asking for glowing skin, lots of lashes, and bigger lips.  I feel that no matter what the trend is,  this is a staple request and a very worthy one.

What beauty products do you think are worth splurging on?

This is a tough question because I love so many products and use so many on so many different types of people.  I would say the most important products worth splurging on are those you are going to actually use daily.  So many people tell me they have bought an airbrush machine or a microdermabrasion machine but have used it once and now it’s in the box.  My advice is to spend money on something you love, enjoy and know how to use.  If you want simplicity buy a great face cream and use it daily, or an SPF that won’t make you break out, or a beautiful lip gloss that you will use every day, or that perfume that you love.  I think if you buy something and use it daily it will indeed pick up your spirits and you will notice that inside and out. There is nothing in the world more worth splurging on or more magical than that.

Do you have any go-to products for women who only have about five minutes to spend putting on makeup in the morning?

I recommend a mineral bronzer, mascara, and lips to get you out of the door and feeling fresh.  I also love to spray a bronzing mist to give my skin a glow.  I love Roxanne Rizzo Bronze Glow; I also love Doll Cosmetics pencils.  It is something I always keep in my purse and it can be used in so many ways. Just to name a few, it can be used as a foundation, highlighter, contour, and lip enhancer.   Another good option is to buy a makeup kit so it has everything right in front of you.  This way you can open it up and really utilize your time efficiently and run out the door.

If you were stranded on a deserted island, what would be the one beauty product you’d have to have?

The only product I would have is my new lip gloss that is coming out very soon called Angel Girl.  This way I wouldn’t be alone.

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