makeup monday: how to rock a red lip

Photo credit: Ricardo Acevedo

Since the first recorded accounts of humans tinting their lips red with crushed gemstones and minerals in ancient Mesopotamia, red lipstick has continued to evolve and gain popularity through the ages. By the time cosmetics were popularized in Europe during Elizabethan times, lip stains were much safer and easier to make. Today, modern makeup lovers continue the quest for the coveted perfect red lip, and we have an immense variety of products to help us achieve it for any occasion.

I hear so many women — both friends and clients — express frustration with wanting to rock a red lip, but feeling overwhelmed by obstacles and options (color, finish, durability). We have it way easier than our primping predecessors did! Hopefully this post will help you to navigate the world of lipstick and find the red that’s right for you.


First, some info about my red lip photos. I’ll also impart a few of my go-to red lipstick application tips, and finally, I’ve included a great casual red lip tutorial video at the end of this post that’ll help you get acquainted with trying red lipsticks, as well as a lovely neutral look for the rest of the face so your lipstick can take center stage.


PHOTO NOTES (from top to bottom)
The photograph at the top of this post is a portrait of me by an amazing Austin artist, Ricardo Acevedo.
My lipstick is OCC Lip Tar in Maneater, a vibrant shimmery orange-red. I am absolutely in love with this color, and will be wearing it frequently this fall.

Second photo down is one of my omg-my-makeup-looks-nice-today selfies, when I’d just gotten the aforementioned OCC Maneater and couldn’t wait to try it on. Both of the top two photos show this warm lip color paired with a dark neutral smoky eye, nothing too dramatic, but certainly not the sort of fresh and minimal eye look you’ll see in the video below.

Third, the side-by-side photos are of my gorgeous friend and bride-to-be makeup client, Emily. She never usually wears red, and is going retro glam for the wedding, so we used Stila liquid lipstick in Beso, which will stay put all day and doesn’t really require any maintenance once it’s applied. We paired the statement lips with a simple, bold cat eye. Doesn’t she look like she should rock a red lip, like, all the time?!

Time and experience, along with really getting acquainted with your own face, will improve your ability to pull off the precise look you’d like to achieve. Along the way, keep these tips in mind for a better overall red lipstick experience, regardless of your mouth shape or color family.

Use liner! Always! Lip liner helps keep your lipstick from bleeding or feathering. Choose a color that matches your lipstick, or get a versatile neutral red that can be used with either cool or warm lipstick shades, and draw a line around the perimeter of your lips. Afterward, fill in the lips, holding the pencil at about a 30 degree angle, to create a base layer. This will keep everything in place and looking fab much longer.

Clean up the edges. It’s not easy getting those edges crisp and pretty like the plethora of perfect Pinterest lips you aspire to have. Over time, as with any precision work, it becomes more natural to maintain a steady hand, but you’ll still mess it up from time to time. Concealer is your best friend, and can heal (almost) all wounds. If you go outside the line or need to correct a wobbly edge, first carefully wipe the excess with a Q-tip (which you can dip in makeup remover if the lipstick is longwear or otherwise not budging). Then, using a small, flat eyeshadow or concealer brush, dab on a tiny bit of product that best matches your skin tone, and blend it out into the rest of your skin. Take a wee bit more concealer and brush on a thin line right along the entire edge of your lip. Blend out away from the lip, into your face. This step makes such a noticeable difference, but please skip it if you’re in a rush! It’ll take some time and patience to master.

Give it time to set. After you’re all done applying lipstick, blot on a tissue or napkin for good measure and then LEAVE IT ALONE. Try to refrain from eating, drinking, or otherwise disturbing your lipstick for a little while. 20-30 minutes is usually plenty of time. Don’t let this discourage you from wearing bold lipstick all together if you’re about to indulge, but is a good idea to keep in mind so you can avoid rubbing off your freshly applied makeup as often as possible.

Ready to try it yourself?! Not yet? No worries.
Here, watch the process in action. This video from Shameless Fripperies is full of all sorts of helpful info on now only applying the makeup, but also comparing and selecting the right color for you. Check it out!

If you try the tips included here and learn something new, please tag us in your pics or comments on Instagram (@thiscreativelife @jenheartsart) and/or Twitter (@thiscre8ivelife @jenheartsart)!

makeup monday: blue bliss



I had the pleasure of working with Loghry Photography this past weekend, contributing my makeup services to her nature shoot with multi-faceted artist and musician Meganoke.

I was eager to help, as I’ve known Naomi (the photographer) and have wanted to work with her for quite awhile. Her work is amazing and I urge you to contact her for portrait, fashion, and editorial photo services. I was mega-inspired to hear we were focusing on a blue-green color palette. Meeting Megan was an absolute pleasure, and she looked fierce and stunning. All in all, we’re all happy with how these photos turned out, and I hope you’ll enjoy them, too!

Product and technique info further down in this post, as well as photo credits.


The photo shoot took place outside on a warm, sunny day, in a beautiful wooded area of west Austin. The color scheme, lighting, and angles used complemented one another to create a variety of dramatic images, each one full of emotion and depth.


For Megan’s makeup, I went with a warm glowing base, dramatic contouring, and a vibrant stylized blue-green eye. On her skin we used a combination of Sephora liquid foundation and bareMinerals mineral powder foundation. Contour was created using colors from Kat Von D’s Shade & Light palette, and to highlight Megan’s cheeks I used NARS blush in Orgasm. She has the most adorable freckles and a natural sunny glow, so I was careful to try and let some of that show through.

On the eyes: navy eyeshadow in the crease of the eyelid, neutral beige for brow bone highlight, and sheer bright green on the inner corners of each eye are all from the Sephora Color Anthology palette. The shimmery teal color you see on most of the model’s lids is Ulta Mineral Powder Eyeshadow in Marine, which I mixed with Mehron’s barrier spray to create a liquid eyeshadow to brush across the lower half of the top eyelids. I used first a black liquid liner at the base of the top lashes, followed by a navy gel eyeliner to soften and smolder it up a bit. We applied black false lashes, but then applied Maybelline’s Totally Teal mascara to the tips of those lashes, as well as to the bottom lash line, for a subtle blue effect when seen in the sun.

The brows are intentionally bold, and quite blue, too. I used a combination of navy eyeliner pencil and powder eyeshadow with an angled brush to create the shape. Once happy with the overall brow look, I finished them off with a bit of metallic water-based body paint from Wolfe FX. We added some slightly sparkly bronzer to Megan’s shoulders, a pretty rosy pink lip, and the rest is history.


All photos by Loghry Photography.
Model: Megan
Makeup: Jennifer Cunningham
Concept & hair: Loghry Photography
Assistance: Derrell Rodrigues & Tim Goelz
Jewelry: Gay Isber Designs

Visit Loghry Photography’s Facebook page to see the rest of this gorgeous photo set!

makeup monday: bridal beauty + winery wedding

Spring wedding season is in full effect, and that means lately I’ve been helping some seriously lovely ladies get glam for their nuptials. On April 11th, I ladies the pleasure of doing bridal makeup for Tyler, one of the sweetest people I know. Tyler and Trevor were married outdoors, at Three Dudes Winery in San Marcos, providing a perfect setting for the gorgeous photos seen in this post. (All photos by Rebekah Fisher.)

Details about this look can be found below!



For Tyler’s bridal look, we went with a rich smokey eye and soft pink lip. I love this style for brides because it’s easy to wear with few to no touch-ups needed, provides a little bit of dramatic glamour, and allows us to use eyeshadow colors customized to complement the wearer’s unique eye color.

All shadows used came from the section of browns and coppers in Sephora’s Color Anthology palette. To combat the effects of perspiration/humidity all over the face, and to really grab the pigments in the eye makeup, we started with Smashbox Photo Finish primer for the whole face and Urban Decay Primer Potion on Tyler’s eyelids.


eyes: copper base color with bronze accents in the crease and blended into the outer edges of the lids, with Buxom black felt pen eyeliner and Ardell lashes
foundation: Sephora oil-free 10 HR perfection foundation in medium 24 honey, set with a light coat of bareMinerals powder foundation in fairly medium
brows: Anastasia Beverly Hills brow duo in caramel (applied with an angled brush just to fill in her natural eyebrow shape)
contour: Kat Von D Shade & Light palette
cheeks: NARS Orgasm blush
lips: Sephora royal rose lip liner + Too Faced Melted long wear liquid lipstick in melted peony + NARS Orgasm gloss


I designed this look to enhance Tyler’s natural beauty, and I think it was a success! The wedding was a blast, an evening filled with love and celebration and spent with amazing people. Thank you so much for letting me be part of your big day, guys!


makeup monday: the girl with green eyes

My first Halloween makeup post of 2014 is one I’ve been wanting to do since last year, so I’m stoked to finally have tried it! Though I’m certainly no Kim Catrall, I’m pretty happy with the results as I recreated her look as Gracie Law from Big Trouble In Little China.

The inspiration:


My version:



Observations and products used:
I started with full-coverage foundation and thicker brows than usual (filled out using brown powder and an angled liner brush), and set everything with tarte Amazonian clay mineral powder. I then began contouring with a brush and my dark pink color.

Be sure to use a matte finish fuchsia eyeshadow! My first attempt involved a mixture of cream and powder blushes, but I really disliked the shimmery finish that blush tends to have. Because I had to make the correction—with limited enough time that I couldn’t wash it all off and begin anew—I ended up with a darker, more dramatic application of the dark pink, so in the future I’d go straight for the matte eyeshadow.

I piled on lots of Urban Decay Primer Potion and purple shadow, then finished off the eyes with black mascara and gel liner. All eyeshadows used for this look are in my b&h cosmetics 120 color palette.


I didn’t have a big, fancy ceremonial headdress like Kim’s lying around, so I polished the ensemble with a dangly pearl headpiece, red lips (Kat Von D), and a fake beauty mark (strategically placed to hide giant blemish).

Which other costume makeup looks would you like to see?


makeup monday: green glam

Green is one of my favorite colors. It’s calming, yet can also be energetic, and it evokes visions of nature and springtime. Often associated with money and luck, it’s the color of growth and prosperity. In celebration of St. Patrick’s Day, today’s makeup post features vibrant greens, so you can’t pinch us!



For this look, I started with LORAC CC Cream and Bare Minerals mineral veil after moisturizing for a smooth, clean base. It’s extremely important to use an eye primer on the eyelids for this application, as it really grabs the color and keeps it vibrant. I use Urban Decay’s Primer Potion.

All of the eyeshadow colors I used today can be found in Sephora’s Color Anthology palette. I recommend finding a shadow palette with at least three different greens, with the brightest shade being the main color. Most cosmetic brands offer sets like these with colors that are designed to complement each other, so the color coordinating part is foolproof.


First, apply the brightest color on the top lids, from lash to crease, and smudge the same color along the bottom lash line. Apply a dark forest green with a thin, flat brush in the crease starting from the outer corner of your eye, and blending inward and upward toward the center, stopping after the outer 2/3 of each eye is done. Using the same thin brush, apply the dark color at the corner of the bottom lash line, blending inward only on the outer 1/3 of the eye this time. Using the palest green shadow, use a soft rounded brush and apply to the inner corner of each eye. Then use the same color to blend the edges of the dark shade, eliminating any harsh lines.

I chose a brown gel liner for this look, rather than my usual black liquid liner, since the color is already so bold. Using an angled eyeliner brush, I simply traced carefully along the upper lash line and flared out about 1/4″ beyond the outer corner of my eye. Mascara is Benefit’s They’re Real! in black.


All of the products above can be found at Sephora, except the NYX gel liner, which is available at drug stores. The necklace I’m wearing was made by me and can be purchased online in my Etsy shop!

Wishing you much luck today! May you find gold at the end of your own personal rainbow.


handmade scene: FrankenFrock class with Anne Marie Beard and Laisa Macias

What could be better than enhancing your wardrobe on the cheap with amazing tailored pieces? Learning how to do it yourself with instruction from a team of skilled pros in a fun, social environment! Join award-winning designers Anne Marie Beard and Laisa Macias on Saturday, February 22nd, for FrankenFrock, a 3 hour class on how to make something old into something new.

We all have clothes that we just can’t let go of because the fabric is amazing, or because we only paid $3 for it, or because we just know that “one day” we will alter it. In this class Anne Marie and Laisa will teach you how to do just that – and empower you to turn your thrift store finds into fashionable frocks.

Each student can bring multiple projects, and they will help you decide which project to complete. Everyone will go home with a new FrankenFrock! Dresses or skirts are recommended as they have the most material and most options for altering.

The photos shown in this post are examples of pieces created by Anne Marie using some of the methods she’ll be teaching in the class.


Laisa Macias is the Designer behind Lala – a sexy women’s clothing line. She has shown collections in New York & Austin, and won three “Best Designer” awards in 2013. She brings extensive experience with sewing knits, patterning, and draping to the class. Anne Marie Beard is an Accessories Designer with a background in Costume Design. She has won two “Best Designer Awards” with Austin Fashion Week, and brings over 25 years of sewing, design, patterning and crafting experience to the class. We promise you will laugh, have fun, make new friends and feel inspired!


Skill Level:
Intermediate Sewing
You need to be able to thread your machine, wind your bobbin, and do basic stitches on your own
The instructors are there to help you, encourage you and empower you to get more comfortable sewing!

Materials Required (or Materials to Bring):
Clothes to FrankenFrock!
Your own sewing machine
Thread snips/small scissors
Fabric shears/large scissors
Notions you may want to use – zippers, new buttons, elastic, etc.
Needles – bring extra sewing machine needles in case you break one!


The FrankenFrock class takes place at the North Door Main Stage, located at 502 Brushy St. in Austin. Info and ticket sales available at

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