Way Down Whest

Hit the beautiful West Cork peninsula a good few weeks ago with an awesome team to do a location shoot. I love getting the opportunity to do shoots (especially location coz I’m a Girl Scout at heart 💗) as I don’t get the time usually during wedding season. I felt so lucky to be working with such a fantastic team. The look, the styling, the concept – it was all amazing.

I rounded up a few snaps that I grabbed on my phone and edited them a wee bit….. and just received some of the professional images from Steve! Really love finally seeing the professional images and hopefully I’ll get to work with these guys again soon!

Steve Savage Photography

Ellie O’Donovan – The Edge Hair

Lijana Jomantaite – Stylist/Model

Katie O’Donoughue – Model

 

J xx

The Art of the Comeback

The old cliche is here again…. ‘Sorry I’ve been away and haven’t been writing…Bla Bla Bla’ I haven’t posted in over a year (419 days to be exact), probably because, as it often does, life takes over and I could never find the time just to sit for a few minutes and type my thoughts. 

I’m not going to go into a big speel about my goals this year or whinge about the life events of the last year. Instead I’m just going to talk about now, the present moment and what I’m doing since the turn of the new year to start it off well. Out with bad habits….in with good ones! 

 
I thought January would be a month for recharging the batteries but I’m glad it’s the opposite and we are motoring on through it nicely. I have a few beauty purchases to review and I’ll get into them in the next post or two. 
At the moment though I’m trying to get through all mails and enquiries and get everything sorted for the next year or two for all you lovely brides which can sometimes be an arduous task. So thank you for baring with me. A makeup artists biggest fear is without a doubt making a double booking so I’m not taking any chances this year! 

In the little time I keep for myself I’ve been trying to focus a little more on my health, both physical and mental and hit the gym more often. As usual I’ve become run down after a hectic Christmas and now I’m trying to get some alignment and order back. 

  
I’ve been using a few apps to get my head and body in a little more harmony and I wanted to share them with you. If you feel like you need a little recharging or gain more balance what better time of the year than January to get started on the right path for the months ahead….

Here’s a few of the apps I use and love to relax my over active mind….

1. Relaxing Melodies

Available in the App Store, I use relaxing melodies at night and play wave sounds along with a melody and a guided meditation to help me drift off to sleep. I add a few drops of lavender to my pillow, take a few deep breaths and just listen. It must be working because I never remember the end of the session! Love this app!  

    
 

2. Headspace

Also available through the App Store, I found Headspace just yesterday and started using it today…it actually was the inspiration for this post. It’s about taking ten minutes by yourself to just meditate, a mindfulness technique that helps you focus your mind more in the moment and helps stop thinking or worrying about the future or the past (helps with anxiety and stress, something a lot of people, me included, suffer from) I’m loving this app so far!

  
  

 
3. Adult Colouring Book Apps

I love these apps. They are easy to use and a simple way of keeping your mind focused on the present ands great way to take a little time out to help focus the mind. Quicker and easier than buying books and colours and it takes less time out of your day.    

 

And when it comes to the body I’m using one or two key apps to train with and document my progress….

4. My Fitness Pal

My Fitness pal is an app that helps you track your daily intake of food and also helps you to keep track of what percentages of food types you are consuming. It tells you what percentage protein, carbs and fats you’re taking in, it graphs your weight progress when you update it. You can even scan the barcode of any product you are about to eat and it calculates the fat/protein/carb breakdown And calorie intake so you know what you have left to eat in a day. It lets you make goals and gives you tips based on what you’re eating. It is also compatible with fitness apps which track your Excercise and subtract your calories burned off. It’s basically an online food and fitness diary and I find it great!

   

5. Nike Training Club

I’ve just downloaded this and I’m starting it today. My cousin Orla swears by it (Hi Orls 🙋🏼) and I watched her use it once when she came to the gym with me….lets just say the sweat was dripping off her by the end of the session and I had barely broken a sweat 😂

 January is when everyone goes bananas for fitness and then it dies off before Febuary is on the horizon. But because I had a friends wedding on New Year’s Day I tried to hit the gym as best I could over Christmas. So now I’m upping the levels day by day as I have my other friends wedding in 6 weeks and her hen in two weeks. 

You can follow workouts on the app, choose your fitness levels or even create your own custom four week programme tailored to your goals whether you want to get lean, tone up or increase your fitness ability. I’ll update you on what I think of this in the next few weeks!

   
   
So these are the tools that I’m utilising to start the year off right for both my mind and body. And the best advice I give myself is ‘bit by bit, day by day’ Hopefully by focusing on the short term goals I’ll get the longevity I’m looking for and more positive results!

Let me know if there’s any other great apps you like to use or swear by!  

“Just Keep Swimming……”

I’ve got Disney on the brain people! You’ll see why at the end and everybody hopes for a happy ending right? Well I know I do!! If I were to equate my Fitness Journey to a Disney movie, yesterday evening standing in Super Valu surrounded by Tins of Roses was the equivalent to Sleeping Beauty trying to avoid pricking her finger on that bloody spinning wheel!!!!

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It was so hard to walk away! I have found my weakness, the chink in my armour! It’s the weekend! The lovely curl up in a ball, order a takeaway and hibernate Sunday nights! The lure of popcorn while watching I’m A Celeb! After a long week of training and being so disciplined I was on the verge of exhaustion. Not due to the diet or exercise but mainly due to the mental struggle. Controlling the minds impulse to tell me I needed more food…mainly bad bad food that definitely wasn’t in my diet!

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Working long days at the weekend and not being able to go to the gym felt like a mental set back and I went to bed last night dejected! I had managed to go an entire week sticking to the diet and getting in the crucial exercise! I even managed to attend a bloggers VIP night in Soho on Thursday night with the most delicious Cocktails and fine cuisine on offer to me and I was as good as gold! I even dolled up and hit the town on Saturday night for one of my besties birthdays and drank sparkling water all night! I thought I was strong! But my weakness was waiting for me on Sunday in that supermarket!!!

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So when I went to the Educogym this morning for my session my face said it all. But it didn’t stop my trainer Mike from putting me through my paces. And encouraging me to keep going. And congratulating me on succeeding thus far. I spoke to Michelle the nutritionist and Holly the manager decided to weigh me to give me a little boost to continue on my mission. And what a boost it was!!! I’m down 6 pounds! I’m also down 1% body fat. Holly also mentioned how great my skin was looking from my Facebook pictures. And she’s right….I’m nearly down half a stone and I’ve five days left. I came out of there buzzing!!!

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I’ve been revitalised since my weigh in! My determination is back and right on track again! And this time I can see the finishing line, or at least the finishing line for part one! I continued my good diet today using my Nutribullet and met up with one of my good friends for lunch in the East Village. Their menu has such great options when your trying to eat clean. We both had Thai Beef Salad and it was lush! So just because you’re dieting, it doesn’t mean you can’t do things you’d normally do just don’t let your mind wander.

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To take my wandering mind off my diet and to make me excited for something in the future I decided it was time to tick something off the bucket list and I booked my ticket to Paris 🇫🇷🇫🇷🇫🇷 and I’m gonna go to Disneyland people!!! What better way to replace my negatives with positives than to book something to look forward to and work towards! I feel like I can take what I’ve done in the last week and apply it to every day going forward!!

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So today is day 7 and I have five days left and if I’ve learned one thing it’s that nobody’s going to hand you your happy ending, you’ve got to get out there and work for it yourself! In the infallible words of a little blue fish you’ve got to….’Just Keep Swimming’

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Bon Nuit Beautiful People!!

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No Pain, No Gain!!

So I’m 3 days into the Educogym 12 day programme and like any other health kick it ain’t without its extreme highs and lows (I had a bit of a whinge last night to myself while David was eating his big fat dinner)😂. I don’t know what it is about this 12 Day Programme though but my brain, for the first time in a long time, just seems to be in sync with my body! I know this because I stood in front of my food cupboards tonight, whipped them open as I decided how I was going to make my meal feel tastier without adding calories and I ended up having a full on staring match with a full jar of Nutella……and I WON!IMG_7373.GIFI’m a food lover, who isn’t really? And making food look good makes me feel better about eating something that can’t necessarily be doused in Mayonnaise. I’m a lover of fruit and salads so what I thought was going to be a struggle is quickly becoming a challenge to think outside the box! Tonight I cooked a chopped chicken breast with a little red onion and garlic to flavour after marinating the chicken in a bag with a tiny drop of oil and BBQ dried spices. I grated raw carrot, cucumber and broke up a satsuma and layered them on top of a bed of spinach and topped it with the chicken. I drizzled Balsamic dressing on top and voilà…..something I wanted to eat that wasn’t a big fat KC’s Double Bacon Cheeseburger with Garlic Fries 😂😂😂

IMG_7370.JPG The exercise bit is great!! After feeling a bit low last night due to my body detoxing I was dreading tonight, and being a makeup artist I was dreading Arms day. I mean it’s a SERIOUS part of my job being able to lift my arms….Duh! But the trainers totally put you at ease and seem genuinely interested in what you do, what your goals are and give great practical advice on how to succeed and survive the detox phase! And it’s over before you know it! 20 minutes, if I can do it, anyone can!!

IMG_7342.JPG I came out of there tonight feeling absolutely great and after a great feed of Popeyes finest it was Davids cue to sit on the couch and eat a Rolo Ice-cream in front of me…..I thinking I’ve got this staring thing down to a fine art!! 😐😐😐Keep me in your prayers 😂

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From Ghoul to Goddess….

So holliers are fast approaching and I’m still no closer to packing a bloody bag but I’m sure an all nighter the night before my hols packing will do the trick 😂

Anyhoo, I have been feeling and looking a little like Casper the friendly ghost lately and faced with going to sunnier climes looking like a geisha didn’t really appeal to me. I was also feeling a little bit sparse in the lash department and despite being staunchly anti-extension in the past, dealing with gorgeous girls who always had amazing lash extensions of their own has made me über jealous. I’ve also thought that it would help me to take the bare naked look off my eyes as my lashes are really really really really really short 😂😂

While getting my hair done with Sabrina in Kopper a few weeks ago I met a lovely girl called Gina who was also getting her hair done and the conversation soon turned to all things beauty. It turned out she worked with another beautician I’ve come to know over the years – Louise, the proprietor of Minnie’s Beauty Salon in Grange. Sabrina sang Gina’s praises as being one of the best lash technicians in Cork and Gina explained and dispelled a few myths I had heard about lash extensions. I didn’t feel as daunted as I had been and now my only fear was if I took the plunge….would I get addicted!!!

And the answer is yes I am addicted….! I came to Gina on Thursday to get a set of extensions on and the setting in Minnie’s was welcoming and the chat just flowed between us as I lay on a heated bed, eyes closed and body relaxed. I couldn’t believe how quickly time flew, we chatted about her upcoming wedding and makeup addictions and before I knew it we were done and I was lashtastic!!

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I’m blown away by how great they look and a small bit freaked because now I’m a full blown lash addict 😂 While I was at Minnie’s Louise called in to catch up and I got talking about my impending holiday. I decided there and then I needed a spray to take the look of Twilights finest off me and Louise happily obliged. I love to walk into the tanning booth Irish and pop out Puerto Rican 😂 Tan immediately makes me feel slimmer and glorious and now I feel like I’m no longer an extra in the Ouija Movie!!!

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I literally don’t have any makeup on bar lipstick and brows 😍😍😍 Can’t wait to get on the plane now! Thanks to the Gina and Louise at Minnie’s for taking such great care of me and making me feel fabulous! Contact them at Minnies Facebook Page or on +353 (85) 882 9405 to book an appointment or ask them about all their amazing treatments!

Nite y’all

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Pucker Up 💋💋

I’m gearing up to go on a short holiday with my boyfriend soon and I’ve been trying to figure out what to pack. I doubt it’s going to be warm enough to wear a bikini where we are going but I’d be pretty peeved to head there with jumpers and leggings only to find the place sweltering. So needless to say I’m bloody stumped as to what goes in the teeny tiny case. But, whatever, I’ll surely figure that out before my head melts!

IMG_6744.JPGBut what I always have too much success in is over packing my makeup case! And seeing as I have very little space I decided to streamline what I bring with me – I PROMISE I WILL TRY! So I’ve been looking for a trend based lippy that I can wear pretty much day and night while I’m away and seeing as Kylie Jenner’s lips are the talk of the town, I want a look that will emulate her pretty pout (without the fillers!!)

IMG_6749.JPGSo I had a root around in MAC the other day for some lip-speration and decided to go for a Matte Pink with density called “Mehr”. It’s a common known trick among Makeup Artists that matte texture gives the look of increased volume to lips, plumping them out and making them look more luscious. That’s why many people who wear red lippy opt for matte texture, it’s the ultimate in Hollywood glamour. When it comes to other tones, we are seeing a serious throwback to the nineties with matte browns and plums making an unbelievable comeback….but this time we’ve got the look down!

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IMG_6743.JPGSo I’ve opted for “Mehr” because it’s not too plum looking, it’s more of a matte dusky pink and I’m going to team it with Plum Lip Pencil to balance it completely.

IMG_6750.JPGI’ll post a holiday blog with more of what I wore when I get back and here’s hoping that I stick to my plan and don’t go overboard with the cosmetic packing for my holiday! But at least I know I’ll have the perfect pout for all those holiday snaps 😘

Night y’all!

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Shop Similar Lip colours by clicking the lips icon –> 💋

Pearls, Cameos and Plenty of Sparkle – MACs Holiday Collection

Tonight MAC Cork had a special preview of their Christmas Collection launch, I got a few pieces myself (essentials people – totally justified 😏😏😏) The collection this year is definitely one of the nicest I’ve seen in years. Heirloom Mix is a beautiful blend of new age sparkle and the precious remnants of an age long past. The cameo detail and pearl trim on the packaging give the collection its vintage feel while the sparkle keeps it up to date. It’s the type of product you’d almost pass on down to your loved ones but quite frankly the only person I want to pass these on down to is MYSELF!! 😂😂

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The collection consists of three Brush sets, a selection of lip bags and eye bags, eyeshadow sets, lipgloss boxes and glitter and pigment sets(these are stunning) and the Viva Glam lip bag with the Rihanna lipsticks.

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I especially LOVE the Viva Glam Lip kit with the six different Viva Glam lip colours in one compact 😍😍😍 and all proceeds go to the MAC AIDs Fund so you’re supporting a very worthy cause while staying Glam!

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My favourite product is the Extra Dimension Eye Bag with two glorious pearlescent eyeshadows(I’m a psycho for these eyeshadows, they give the lid a liquidy sheen like molten metal – I swear by them on my brides), a Pearlglide eyeliner and an Extra Dimension mascara with a gorgeous sparkly bag for your makeup essentials! This set is €55 which is a bargain considering the mascara retails at €23 on its own! What better gift to get yourself this Christmas eh??!!

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I bought a few pressed pigments for the upcoming Christmas Party season and I’ll post about them in more detail soon!!

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Below is a picture of the stunning model from tonight’s preview in all her Heirloom Glory! This collection launches on Thursday the 6th of November and it is guaranteed to fly off the shelves! So set a reminder in your phone to get into MAC Cork to take a look at these gorgeous Christmas sets….before I buy them all for myself 😍😘😂

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Night y’all,

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Check out my makeup at http://www.facebook.com/JenniferKeatingMUA 👌

The Art of Letting Yourself Be Pampered….

So surely I must be the only beauty professional in the country at this stage who is………ahem……..a Spa Experience Virgin. For Shame I hear you say? Hmmm….maybe as a makeup artist yes….but as a woman….no.

The reason I’m not ashamed to admit that I have never visited a Spa in my 31 years is probably the same reason most women (and maybe men) would agree upon….we just don’t have the time or cannot make time for ourselves! I mean it’s just about enough that we can squeeze in the occasional hair or nail appointment while working long hours, whether you are a mum or you are in the office/department store/hospital etc! So I don’t feel ashamed….I feel more bemused!

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Well not anymore people!!! Because Jenny has gone to the Spa and Jenny loved it!!! Let me tell you why I loved it in a second. Firstly let me tell you all the reasons I have just not gotten around to ‘hitting the Spa’.

As much as I love both my jobs, my family, my home, my hubby and my hobbies there seems to be this modern day unspoken ethos surrounding the way we work….and work….oh ya and WORK. ‘We must not stop……ever’! We must provide, we must nurture, we must stress, we must worry, we must not get 8 hours of sleep a night, we must not get sick….and so on and so forth!

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Freelancing is not 9-5 Monday to Friday….it can be balancing a book of appointments that can take you to either side of the city and beyond many times a day. It can be the constant struggle to make sure that you satisfy as many lovely loyal clients as you possibly can (I hate to say No and I hate to disappoint) It can be the 6am starts to be at a job in the next county to be on top form to make sure that the lovely girl you are about to make up feels cool, calm, relaxed and ready to get hitched!

It is answering countless emails from four different accounts on top of text messages and phone calls at any stage of the day or night, any day of the week. People are relying on you on one of the most important days of their lives! It’s not just a job to me but the job part of it isn’t without its stresses. And I’m sure countless women AND men can relate in their own lives and in their own work situations.

So, this is why, NOW……POST Spa Experience I am kicking myself as to why I haven’t been bloody doing this since I turned 18, not to mind 31!!! LISTEN TO ME WHEN I SAY……YOU DESERVE THIS!!! God knows you work hard enough. You work hard to pay a mortgage, to pay for your kids education, to go on a two week holiday for the 5/6 days of looking tanned post holiday until it’s yanked away from you as soon as your skin has re-adjusted to lovely over cast Ireland!! So you definitely need this…..at least once and at most infinitely!

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This year has had serious ups and downs for me. Loosing both my Grans within 7 months of each other was really tough and my mental and physical health took a bit of a nose dive as a result. And I know I am not alone when I say that this climate both meteorological and economical is undoubtedly a serious strain on a lot of people’s mental and physical health as well!!

And let me that tell you none of the above entered my mind as I sat in the relaxation room of the Maryborough Spa on Monday (well maybe I had my Grans voices in my head telling me to enjoy this 😉). All I could do was look at the beautiful waterfall cascading down the window opposite and think to myself….you deserve more of this!

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If it wasn’t for Lisa’s (www.JustJordan.ie) suggestion I would still be in the dark about the joys of a Spa day! So thanks pal! For a few blissful hours we enjoyed swimming in a hydra pool (albeit after we procured ourselves some lovely swimsuits thanks to the lovely Gemma at reception who came to our rescue after Lisa neglected to mention to me that we would need them 😂😂 – Lisa doing her best Olympic Swimmer Impression was hysterical), chilling in the sauna, unsuccessfully tried negotiating the steam room (which made for more laughs) and then we headed back to the relaxation room and chilled out until our therapists collected us.

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I decided to have the Maryborough Signature Facial as I have had massages before but….shock,horror….I have never had a facial!! Yes I can’t believe it either! Well this bad boy was certainly worth the wait! My lovely therapist Amanda took me to my treatment room where we discussed a few things first. She told me the ins and outs of what I was going to have done and then gave me the options of a few different scents, I ended up going with Ylang Ylang in the end…Just Lush!! She also asked me what Mood Chakra Colour I wanted….I had a choice of three so I opted for Violet!! Weak already and I hadn’t even reached the treatment bed 😍

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The Signature Facial consists of a cleanse to begin with followed by the use of a skin lamp to view the condition of the underlying layers of skin. I had discussed my skin with Amanda in the beginning, suggesting I was dry with a slightly oily t-zone and she confirmed this for me. Then it was down to business!

Combining steam and a Clairisonic she exfoliated my face and neck. It was lush! My mum used to stick our heads into a bowl of steam covering us and the bowl with a towel to trap the steam when we were kids! She would just even hear us sniffle and out came the bowl and on went the kettle and despite HATING having to be steamed I loved to way my skin used to feel afterwards! After that, Amanda gave me an extensive face, neck and upper chest massage but to be honest the details were all a little vague as I was well and truly chilled at this stage. All I knew was Amanda had magic hands!

Which were put to the test when she gave me a foot massage (if my sister is reading this shes contorting in pain as she can’t stand feet…..especially mine…and they’re not that bad!!) Though I was slightly freaked at the thought of someone touching my feet I have to admit it was beyond amazing and I can see why reflexology works wonders! The next step was adding the Espa Lift and smoothing mask to my skin which was cooling and scented with menthol. While this set on my skin she gave me an amazing scalp massage and finished by removing the mask. My skin felt like a Peach….ripe, plump and silky smooth! All in all, the entire facial is something I will definitely be doing more regularly (Lisa found this hilarious – one visit and I’m officially a junkie!)

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After our treatments we chilled in the relaxation suite for a bit before heading to a private area of the spa for some lunch while still in our robes 💆 The whole day was such an eye opener to me. I willingly go out on a night out and on average spend the bones of €100-€150 on outfits/hair/taxis/booze and wake up the next morning with the grim reaper hanging over me all day. When the alternative could be taking a Sunday for myself, bringing some girlfriends or maybe the hubby along and telling the Grim Reaper to jog on.

The lightbulb moment on Monday was the realisation that giving yourself a bit of mental relaxation, a break from the norm so to speak will hopefully help encourage the physical being to follow. I’m still working on both but this is sure to be a greatly positive future outlet to help me!!

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I had originally planned to go into detail on the products and techniques but I decided to focus on the benefits of this wonderful experience instead and hopefully relate to you why I think we all should adjust our sails a little to take a bit of time to genuinely relax. My experience wouldn’t have been what it was if we didn’t have excellent service and attention at the Maryborough Hotel and Spa ….click the link to visit their website for fantastic monthly offers on different treatments. Take yourself, take a friend, take your man but definitely take five xx

Trust me, you need it and I’ll probably see you there!! 😉

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The Art of the Quick Fix…

Hola Beautiful Warpainters!!

Isn’t it amazing what a few minutes TLC can do makeup wise?!! How a quick bit of topping up can make a world of difference if you’re going from day to night, from home to the pub, flying out the door to do some shopping!

Yesterday I was wearing Prolongwear concealer mixed with Strobe cream, light brows, powder and Mascara (left picture below!) when I took the first photo! I had been wearing it all day so by 6pm due to how humid it was it had slipped off my T-Zone and Chin(broke my cardinal rule of forgetting to reapply powder throughout the day! BOLD JEN)

Anyhoo! I was heading to an Event at Salon Shop regarding a new product they are distributing and needed to re-invent my face but I didn’t have much time to do it. So the bottom right is the result of 15 mins of topping up my skin!!

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Yes people!! 15 minutes!
1. Reapplied some fresh Prolongwear Concealer with my fingers & polished it with my stipling brush.
2. Lightly powdered over it with Studio Careblend powder!
3. Quickly contoured with Inglots HD Contour&Highlight powder!
4. Added highlight with Sharon Osbournes Limited Edition MAC Highlighter(no blush)
4. Using one eye shadow, a matte deep plum colour, Deep Damson (THANK YOU ANITA O BRIEN FOR BRINGING THIS HOME FROM NYC FOR ME 😍😍) I buffed it out into a smoke on the lid, into the socket and under the eye.
5. Added Feline Black Kohl pencil to the waterline and Sense of Style Blue Pearlglide liner above the lash line(threw it on-no lies)
6. Topped up mascara and glued Penny’s lashes on
7. Added Phloof to highlight inner eye
8. Lined lips with Essence lip liner Wish Me a Rose and added To The Future peach lipstick from MAC and finished with Lots Of Laughs Gloss, also MAC.

Literally it took me less time to apply everything than it did to think out and type out this blog!!

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So if ur in a rush and need a go to top up kit assess your options and prepare a kit for yourselves! Who knows where you might be whisked off to at the drop of a hat!

Later Beauties,

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Mastering the Art of the Line

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Hello all my beautiful Warpainters!!

So when I first started to have more than just an interest in make up, one of the most feared practises I thought I’d never master was the art of eye liner. I think it’s safe to assume that a vast majority of women who enjoy applying make up attempt to apply eyeliner with a sense of trepidation! Before we get down and dirty with the fundamental application of the ‘dreaded’ line, let me first tell you a thing or two about how this practice came to be such a frustrating yet hugely desirable part of our beauty regime.

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Let’s go back…..way, way back to Ancient Egypt…..to where Eyeliner was first worn as a dark black line around the eyes. Egyptians wore various cosmetics not only for aesthetics but to protect the skin from the desert sun.Research has also speculated that eyeliner was worn to protect the wearer from the evil eye (more commonly known now amongst modern women as ‘leaky eye syndrome’!) These heavily lined eyes were a repeated depiction in Egyptian hieroglyphs and eventually, when Tutankhamuns tomb was discovered in the 1920’s the rapidly modernising woman was introduced to the ancient glorious art of eyeliner!

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And so down through the twentieth century the style has thickened, pointed, winged and disconnected but one thing remains the same….Eyeliner remains the easiest and most seductive way to add feline drama, smolder and sexiness to ones look. We take our inspiration from countless celebrities over the years whose iconic use of eyeliner has set it as a permanent trend from catwalk to red carpet to magazine to make up artist and consumer alike!

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From Marilyn Monroe, Sophia Loren, Brigitte Bardot to Elizabeth Taylor, the Hollywood starlets of their time all had this look down! Who didn’t want to emulate the aura of quirkiness that surrounded Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s or capture the beauty of the enigmatic Ms Monroe in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes?!

 And so the trend evolved and took on many different shapes and styles. Women are free to define their own beauty look with signature liner. That is……if you can take on the dreaded challenge of the line!  Over the years women have constantly said to me ‘Oh there’s no way I could do that, I don’t have the skill/patience/steady hand’ and I think this is copping out! Why? Well, because until I was 25 years old I, too, was copping out, being a total chicken, not wanting to ruin what eye make up I had mastered by making a complete balls of the liner right at the end. This all changed though when I began working in the industry, I had no choice, liner was the way forward. Though it wasn’t just the case that I had no choice, I had seen myself first hand the benefits of darkening the lash line and kinking the corners up. It makes fair haired Irish women’s eyes more alluring. It draws attention to eye colour. Simply put it makes a woman feel sexy!!! And I’m all for anything that makes a gal feel sexy!

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 So how does one go about kicking liners ass and making herself feel unreal in the process? Here are a few tricks of the trade and product suggestions that go a long way to simplifying things and making eyeliner less daunting!

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 First things first…..get the products right!!! I worked for MAC and trust in MAC so I almost always suggest MAC products but that’s not to say that there aren’t others on the market that can do a similar job at a lower price point. I just stick to what works for me!  I prefer to use an angled liner brush and gel liner, because I like its potency and its long lasting quality so I use MAC’s Fluidline in Blacktrack. You can also buy it in a navy colour (Waveline) and in brown (Dipdown) but Blacktrack is my go to product. I use a #263 Angled Liner brush from MACs range. Now, they retail at €20.50 but you can’t put a price on good brush quality or so I have learned and my liner brushes have stood the test of time (four years to be exact!)  So think of it as a sound investment.

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Now….there are a few tricks to working with gel. The first is to not overload the brush or put too much on your lid first go. Start slow! Don’t try and draw a continuous line, instead drag the brush across your lid, as close to your lash line as possible in darting motions like you’re drawing dots and use a second sweep to darken the line. Sweep over the line a third time if needed to give it more density. To create the wing or kick the liner out at the corner, I have learned that if you keep your eye open while looking straight into a well lit mirror (natural light in front of your face is great!) you can obtain better balance to both eyes.

Don’t give up!!! As they say Rome wasn’t built in a day so if at first you don’t succeed TRY AGAIN!!!

Just to run through other forms of eyeliners with you beauties, MAC carry a classic inkwell liquid liner called Bootblack which is lusciously dark but takes a few seconds longer to dry and doesn’t have the long lasting power of Blacktrack. I like it though; it’s vampy and good for a quick fix over your Blacktrack on a night out. It costs €19 and Rimmel among other brands sell a product quite like this. For beginners or sceptical beauties MAC have Penultimate Liner in Rapidblack at €19 which is a pen and great for building confidence, the pen just doesn’t last as long as the gel pot! For the ladies who love to smoulder and grunge up their look Technakohl Liner in Graphblack(€19) and Feline Power Kohl Pencil(€17.50) are great additions to any make up bag. I especially love FELINE pencil for doing smoky dark eyes….its so easy to sex up your eyes with this product!

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Boot Black

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Rapid black Felt Tip Liner

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Graph black Technakohl Liner

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   Feline Power Kohl Pencil

 I cannot repeat enough how GOOD practise works! And you will see the benefits of wearing eyeliner start to emerge….movie deals, modelling contracts, the man of your dreams will ask you out……ok, ok maybe I over exaggerated the effects just a little but I believe firmly that ‘the most beautiful thing a woman can wear is confidence’ and make up is our ultimate tool in enhancing what every woman already has! DON’T FORGET IT!!

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 Thanks for reading! Any of the products are available to purchase in Brown Thomas stores or online at Brown Thomas MAC. Make sure to comment underneath or on my Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/JenniferKeatingMUA with any products you love to use!! Love to hear what works for ye.

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