With a Little Help From My Friends: Beauty Dish

Ok ladies here it goes! Yes, I do wear a little bit of makeup everyday, sometimes I throw on a bold lipstick. Do I actually know how to do my own makeup, or know what I'm doing for that matter NO.  I was recently getting ready to go to an event and looked in my "pathetic" little makeup case of only 10 items and thought to myself… girllllll you gotta get it together! My bronzer (yes… I said bronzer) was cracked, I barley had any of my go-to eyeshadow left, and I have been wearing the same color lip gloss from MAC for like 5 years. I desperately needed a crash course in all things beauty. I needed to get some core pieces and invest in makeup that can transition from everyday to evening because I am constantly on the go. More importantly, I really needed to sit down with a beauty expert and have them actually teach me how to put it on.  You know the Beatles song "With A Little Help From My Friends",  that's exactly how it went down.  Beauty Blogger/Makeup Expert & Editor-in-Chief of DIVAlicious Lauren Cosenza (and friend) really hooked a sister up. Lauren went through my makeup case with me (yes she reconfirmed my lipgloss is a dinosaur color by MAC LOL),  showed me how to properly clean/take care of my brushes, how to hydrate the skin even before makeup, what products to use, and HOW I should apply. She is literally a makeup God. 

I went to her personal makeup studio in Williamsburg and this is what went down:

Who knew there were so many steps and rules to getting the picture perfect look!? How do women learn all of these things? Lauren broke it down for me, so now I want to share all of the good stuff with you! First of all, you should use a basic makeup remover pad or cloth before you put anything on your skin. Next, you should put on a great moisturizer (Lauren used Lancome Genifique Serum), this stuff is expensive but it's the best and the bottle will last a while because you are only using small amounts at a time.  One of Lauren's most important rules: CLEAN YOUR BRUSHES!  You should be cleaning your makeup brushes every 2 weeks, or at least once a month. You can actually make your skin worse and cause acne and bacteria by not cleaning them. She swears by Cinema Secrets brush cleaner.  The next thing to remember when getting ready to apply your makeup is pair LIKE with LIKE. Meaning, if you are using a powder foundation then use a powder blush, if your are using liquid foundation use a mouse blush. If you mix the two your skin tone will not come out even and it will look blotchy. 

(FYI these pictures are COMPLETELY unedited or retouched…damn she makes me look good!)

It's not 'Transformation Tuesday" but it sure looks like it! 
(Don't judge me when I'm wearing no makeup lol

1. it Cosmetics Ultra Repair Liquid Oxygen Foundation, this product is nice and light so it doesn't feel like your caking on a face full of makeup. 

2. Applied Argan Color Stick "Beautiful" by Josie Maran to cheeks and lips. 

3. Some highlighting & contouring with the Nudes palette by Maybelline

4. Adding in some of the gray and smokey shadows from the Nudes platte, lining under the eye with Victoria Secret Beauty Rush black sparkle liner

5. Creating a smudged cat-eye with Cargo Liquid Eyeliner, adding in lashes (the doubles), and finishing the eyes with Perfect Lash Mascara

6. Darkening/filling in the brow with a brown from the Nude palette, lining the lips with Hourglass long wear liner in red, and the final touch adding Hourglass Icon Opaque Rouge Liquid Lipstick

I left there feeling like a million bucks, all thanks to my amazing beauty expert! This chick is pretty darn impressive. After I got the full beauty makeover I wanted to pick her brian. Lauren has been in the fashion & beauty industry for a long time and leads an extremely exciting life.  Did I mention she was just featured in Cosmopolitan Magazine "10 Ways to reach Your Definition of Success"? (you go girl!

Here is the exclusive scoop:

How did you get started in the makeup & beauty industry?

The joke is that I was born in high heels wearing lipstick. I honestly “started” in beauty/fashion from inception. When I was little, I would tear out pages of magazines and try to recreate the looks using my mother’s makeup stash, which was beyond minimal. I was in second grade when I convinced her to get me my first lipgloss from (now-closed department store) A&S on Long Island. PS, it was a sheer pink from LancĂ´me, even though I of course wanted hot pink. I then started doing friends makeup for events in high school, then college. When I graduated, I didn’t consider a career in makeup. I wanted to work in the beauty, fashion or magazine industry – definitely a visual, creative field - but it was ingrained in me to seek stability in the form of a regular paycheck and benefits post-graduation. I don’t think I fully realized that I could make a career and support myself on my own as a makeup artist and blogging did not yet exist. So I just did makeup here and there on the side. And that all ended up a good thing because I started my career in advertising at McCann Erickson and then went on to work at Cosmopolitan and Shape magazines in beauty. I was Executive Beauty/Fashion Director and Brand Development Director before starting my own company – and the experience I gained, the industry knowledge I absorbed and the relationships I formed could not have been a better springboard for my work now.

When did you launch your blog DIVAlicious and where do you see it going over the next few years?

I launched my blog DIVAlicious in October of 2007 while still at Shape under the personal handle LDiva -- which for good or bad, has stuck. It was kind of a college nickname, the backstory is on my About LDiva page on the site (http://divaliciousblog.com/about-ldiva), and I used it rather than my name at first. I started the blog originally for industry insiders because on so many of my meetings, people would ask how I did my makeup a certain way or how I put together a look. I was never shy of anything bold or daring in terms of style – I live for color and texture and self-expression and personal style – so I was also asked about confidence a lot. So ultimately DIVAlicious was created to give women (and now men) the confidence and permission to be fabulous. 

You only live once, so why not be a smokeshow?
There are a bunch of exciting things in the works for the next few years, some of which I can’t comment on publicly just yet, but you will definitely see more faces and voices on the site as it transforms from my own beauty blog to a full-on style community that I will oversee and curate and as well as contribute to. This is so important to me because beauty is universal and for that reason, the site must be inclusive and representative – from ages, races, genders, styles and so forth. With the common denominator, of course, being the Diva (or Divo) attitude. (The site tagline is “serving up style, with a side of attitude.”)

What is a typical week of work like for you?

There is nothing typical, routine or normal in my life – and this extends beyond the professional. Lol! But for real. And thankfully, that’s how I like it.

What was the best experience of your professional career? 

Since leaving publishing to start my own company in early 2010, I have worked with the biggest and best beauty, fashion and magazine brands on the planet. And each experience tops the one prior in terms of being amazing and memorable. Sometimes I have to stop and just be thankful and present in the moment. But as an entrepreneur and businesswomen, I always believe the best is always yet to come.

What’s in your “everyday” makeup bag/ the 1 product you could not live without?

 Girl! The one product I could not live without? This is like asking a mother of 5 to pick her favorite child. On the record. I don’t know if I could say just one!!! And new stuff is sent all the time. But in my makeup bag, right now, this very moment is:

-        YSL Le Teint Touch Eclat Foundation
-        Cle De Peau Beaute Concealer
-        Bodyography Radiance Boost Highlighter
-        Mehron Cheek Cream
-        MAC Mineralize Skin Finish Natural in Medium Plus (powder)
-        Maybelline Brow Drama Brow Mascara
-        Maybelline The Falsies Big Eyes Mascara
-        Lancome Le Crayon Khol Eyeliner
-        A rotation of Make Up For Ever cream and powder eyeshadows
-        A rotation of NYX Matte Lipsticks, including Hippie Chic, Indie Flick and Pure Red
-        Brushes from It Cosmetics and Jenny Patinkin (a new discovery)

Obviously I don’t pair all this together for an everyday face, but this is what I’m currently pulling from for my own makeup.

Other new brands I’m loving right now are MAKE and Rouge Bunny Rouge, which are sprinkled into my personal collection and pro kit.
For all my favorite beauty products, and the list is extensive, I have a DIVAfaves page on my blog. I update it regularly as new faves and brands pop on my radar.

What advice do you have for someone starting out in the beauty industry?

Really my advice is for starting out in any career. Take risks. Take a chance on yourself. Never listen to doubters or haters. Silence the background noise. Don’t follow any path but your own. Passion over paycheck. Listen to your heart. Dream BIG. Then dream BIGGER.

Most importantly, what makes you feel beautiful? 

Waking up to my boyfriend smiling at me. Affection and kindness. Making others feel beautiful. Giving back. And of course, more conventional things -- like a fresh, glowing complexion. The perfect shade of lipstick. Lashes for days. A bombshell blowout. Luxurious fabric on bare skin. It’s a mix.

Hope you enjoyed this beauty adventure with me! Until next time.