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Vegan. Ex-makeup artist. CFS/ME sufferer. Cares about human rights, equality, animal rights, conservation/climate change.


Tuesday, 28 November 2017

Becoming A Vegan Makeup Artist: Kit Recommendations, Face Edition

Creating smooth, even, healthy-looking skin is the bread and butter of makeup artistry (or should that be the dairy-free spread of makeup artistry?) The following products are best for getting the job done, the vegan way.
  • Concealer

RCMA Color Process Foundation (can be used as concealer or foundation. Comes in convenient palettes.Thinning fluid isn't vegan, but moisturiser can be used instead to sheer out product). Perfect for contouring and highlighting, too. PalettesSingles
Pic via Guru Makeup Emporium

Kett Fixx Creme (can be used as concealer or foundation. Comes in convenient palettes.)
Palettes, Singles. 

Elf All Over Cover Stick

  • Foundation
Kett Hydro Airbrush Foundation (Only for use with an airbrush.)

Wet n Wild Coverall (Poor shade range)

Illamasqua Skin Base
Pic via Illamasqua

Kat Von D Lock-It Tattoo Foundation

  • Colour Corrector
Barry M Colour Correcting Kit
Pic via Barry M
  • Powder
RCMA No-Color Powder
Cult classic. Cuts through shine like no other. Colourless and invisible.

  • Highlight
Can be airbrushed or used with a sponge.

  • Contour
Kett Hydro Contour
Can be airbrushed or used with a brush or sponge.

Lunatick Cosmetic Labs Contour Book Palette VOL 1
Buildable and mixable - a tap of each colour on your brush creates a custom shade.

Pic via Lunatick Cosmetic Labs

  • Blush
Freedom Makeup London Pro Blush Palettes in Peach & Pink

BH Cosmetics 10 Pan Blush Palettes in ProfessionalGlamorous and Nude
Pic via Beauty Bay

  • Setting Spray
Skindinavia Bridal Finish. This stuff is legendary. Shake well and spray liberally to ensure the makeup lasts all day!

What are your favourite vegan face products? 
Check back next week to hear about some killer eye products!

Til Next Time,

    Tuesday, 21 November 2017

    Becoming a Vegan Makeup Artist: Kit Building & Skin Prep Recommendations

    In this post, I'm going to talk about building your vegan professional makeup kit.

    Buying your kit will be pricey, even if you only go for the cheapest products to start out with. I recommend signing up for an industry discount once you've enrolled onto your course. You will need to sign up with each individual retailer separately and show proof that you're enrolled, then you will receive a discount. Also, when buying online, try to go through a cashback site like Top Cashback. You'll get a small percentage of each sale back, and it adds up rather quickly if you're buying a lot. I've earned £267.45 so far! You can sign up at topcashback.co.uk, or go via my  referral link if you feel like helping me out! :)

    To figure out if a brand is cruelty-free, just search for them on lists such as Cruelty-Free Kitty and Logical Harmony. You will need to decide whether you are okay with using products from a cruelty-free company with an animal testing parent company (such as Tarte, Urban Decay). I personally try to avoid brands with animal testing parent companies, except when there is no other option, or the company is extremely dedicated to making vegan products (such as Superdrug or Kat Von D). Here is a good post by Lovely Witches about parent companies.

    • Brands that are 100% Cruelty-Free and Vegan


    I highly recommend their airbrush makeup - if you plan to airbrush, I would purchase the whole kit from them.


    A great way to get a lot of lip colours is to buy a set of Lip Tars and mix any colour you can imagine from them. They can be topped with gloss or blotted and powdered, and come in metallic, glitter and tinted gloss finishes. Their pencils for eyes and lips are also great quality.

    Lots of quality products for cheap prices. Read reviews prior to purchasing as they have a couple of dud products among the many great ones.

    Shiro Cosmetics

    Great for unique powder eyeshadow shades, especially duochrome shadows.


    Great for duochrome shadows, colour shifting shadows and Pixie Epoxy - a kind of 'primer' to bring out the shimmer in eyeshadows.

    Skin Illustrator

    A post shared by @skinillustratorofficial on

    Skin Illustrator makes alcohol based makeup for film, TV and SFX. The vast majority of films and TV shows you see use these products to produce realistic skin effects like freckles, tanning/sunburn, bruising, ageing, scars, tattoos, dirtying down, the list is endless. They also produce tooth lacquer, dirt for different dirt effects, blood under the name 'Fleet Street', and heavy-duty sealing sprays (Blue and Green Marble).

    Brushes - Nanshy, Spectrum, Real Techniques and Cozzette make high-quality vegan brushes. Ideally, you will have multiples of oft-used brushes to save time sanitising them between clients, but it's okay to start out with less.

    Great Brands With Vegan Lists -

    Refer to these websites when shopping for the same brand on other websites. It's often cheaper to buy many different brands from the same retailer rather than make several purchases from the brand websites.

    BH Cosmetics

    Neve Cosmetics


    Barry M (Vegan products are labelled in the drop down ingredients tab of each product)

    Wet 'n' Wild (Hard to find in the UK, but good quality and cheap if you can get it)


    Skin Prep Recommendations

    It's essential to start with a clean, moisturised base when building a look. The right products will cleanse quickly without drying the skin, add moisture without grease, and help makeup adhere to the skin to last all day.
    • Skincare
    A small pot of homemade sugar and sunflower oil lip scrub to be used before cleansing if needed.

    B. Pure Micellar Water (they sell two micellar waters, this one is a larger bottle)

    Superdrug Simply Pure Hydrating Serum
    A cult favourite with moisture-boosting ceramides, and only £2.99!

    EltaMD UV Clear SPF 46 (if model/client will be in the sun)
    Perfectly matte, high protection without flashback. Bieberino knows what's up.

    Superdrug/Sainsbury's Petroleum Jelly or pure shea or cocoa butter for lips.

    • Primer
    Hylamide HA Blur*
    Effectively blurs wrinkles and pores.

    Niod Photography Fluid*
    'Lit from within' in a bottle.

    (* - Deciem is part-owned by Estee Lauder, but the company itself remains cruelty-free)

    I hope you're now suitably prepared for next week's post about foundation and concealer recs!

    Til Next Time,


    -All pics from the instagrams or websites of the brands in question-

    Tuesday, 14 November 2017

    Becoming A Vegan Makeup Artist: Hygiene

    Hygiene is so vitally important to your work as a makeup artist, which is why I've decided to dedicate a whole post to it. Bacteria, fungi, viruses and even parasites can be transferred from a client's skin to your brushes. From here they can be transferred to your makeup kit via double-dipping, where they can grow, before being transferred to other clients the next time you use the brush or product. 


    Hygiene Rules

    • Wash hands with soap and water before and after each client.
    • Once brushes have touched a client's skin, they are to be kept separate from the clean brushes. Do not put them back until they have been washed/sanitised, they will contaminate the others. A large zip-lock bag or a plastic bag can be used to store dirty brushes for later cleaning.
    • Brushes used for powder can be quickly sanitised between clients by spraying with 70% alcohol and leaving to dry naturally. 
    • Cream and liquid products are prone to bacterial/fungal growth, which thrive in a moist environment. These products should be decanted from the container using a clean spatula or the end of a brush and deposited onto a clean palette or back of the hand and used from there with a brush. Double dipping with powder products is acceptable, but everything should be spritzed with 70% alcohol every month or so. 
    • Brushes used for cream products should be washed with soap.
    Pic via realtechniques.com

    • Mascara should be applied using a disposable mascara wand, which should be dipped once, used, then discarded or set aside for thorough washing and disinfection. To prevent accidentally double-dipping, I recommend cutting off the wand that comes in the cap of your kit mascara. 
    • Lip gloss, eye primer, and other products with a wand/doe-foot applicator should be deposited onto a clean palette or back of hand using the applicator provided. This applicator should never touch the client's skin.
    • Make note of when products are opened, and discard them when they have been opened for the amount of time it says on the packaging. This should be a number, followed by m (for months), inside a diagram of an open jar.
    Period After Opening symbol. Pic via Wikipedia.

    Recommended Products

    Brush washing -
    Isopropyl Alcohol/Rubbing Alcohol/Surgical Spirit for spot cleaning. Used in a spray bottle with kitchen towels or washcloths. Strength must be 70%, higher or lower will not kill bacteria effectively. 
    Vegan bar soap (preferably palm oil free) for deep cleaning brushes. Vegan shampoo/washing up liquid for beauty sponges. After washing and rinsing, put beauty sponges in cup/bowl of warm water, then microwave for 30 seconds to kill bacteria.

    Superdrug Fragrance-Free Baby Wipes

    Cotton Pads (Organic, Fairtrade Cotton)

    Cotton Buds (Organic cotton, paper stalk, not plastic)

    Kitchen Roll (preferably recycled)

    Large Ziplock bags to store dirty brushes/sponges apart from clean ones. Can be washed/dried and reused. Can also be used as a rubbish bin.

    Clean small towel to lay on the table to protect from spillages and provide a clean working surface.

    Disposable Mascara Wands. These should be washed thoroughly and reused. 

    Disposable Lip Brushes. These should be washed and reused, but can also be given to brides along with a tiny pot of their lip colour to reapply throughout the day.

    Stipple Sponge. To scrub eyeshadow brushes on before changing the shadow colour. If you're confused about the concept, it's a bargain version of the 'Colour Switch'.

    Eyebrow/Facial razors. To remove excess facial hair. To shape brows when there's no time for plucking. Do not reuse. 

    Superdrug Hand Sanitizer

    Real Techniques Brush Cleansing Palette. Helps immensely with working the product out of brushes. If you have sensitive skin, like me, wear waterproof gloves when washing brushes.

    The less glamorous side of make-up is just as important if you want to be a pro. Keep an eye out for my next post, all about my skin prep recommendations!

    Til Next Time,


      Tuesday, 7 November 2017

      Becoming A Vegan Makeup Artist: Makeup School & Learning From YouTube

      Hey! It's been a while since I've posted here, but I've decided to hop back on the blogging train for a bit to share some knowledge and experience. Every once in a while I'll get an email asking about how to become a vegan makeup artist. The answer isn't short, so I'll be spreading the info over a series of posts. Even if you're not planning to be a vegan makeup artist, I'll be recommending my some amazing makeup artist YouTubers and telling you all of my favourite products! 


      As far as I know, there are no specifically vegan/cruelty-free makeup courses. This means you will have to build your own kit before attending your course. If a kit is included in the price of the course, make sure you ask for a discount so you aren't paying for anything you won't use. 

      First, you'll need to decide what side of the industry you want to go into - Fashion/Editorial or Film/TV. Bear in mind that working in film and TV is very demanding - long hours and potentially many days back to back without a day off. It's very rewarding, but perhaps not the best option for those with chronic illness, or any health condition that could be exacerbated by this kind of lifestyle.

      Schools I highly recommend - 

      They are pricey but will give you the best possible leg up into the industry. Both schools organise work experience for their graduates, and the professional artists that teach there will choose graduates to assist them on big shoots. 

      The most important thing about choosing a course is ensuring the teachers have enough real experience working in the industry, and their own work is of a high technical standard. Most of the time, if you get a BTEC or VTCT at your local college - it'll be taught by someone with little experience and sub-par skills. I initially went down this route due to lack of funds. I learned a lot by working with other makeup artists, and by watching tutorials by real working makeup artists. 

      • Makeup artist YouTube Channels

      Beauty gurus are great, but they often only have experience working on their own face, which limits them a lot. The following makeup artist YouTubers may not use vegan or cruelty-free products, but can teach you a lot about technique. Be sure to watch tutorials of how to apply makeup on every race, age, skin tone and eye shape (including monolid), as well as over acne, scars and birthmarks. A good search term to look for is 'client tutorial'. 

      I DO NOT recommend you learn solely from YouTube, but instead use it to supplement your knowledge.

      Angie Di Battista

      Jordan Liberty

      Claire Marshall

      Mathias Alan

      Stella's Addiction

      Alex Faction

      Rae Morris



      Jen Chae

      Jackie Aina


      GoldieStarling (SFX)

      KlaireDeLys (Character Makeup)

      Sam Villa (Hair Styling)

      Lilith Moon (Hair Styling)

      Freedom Styles (Afro Hair Styling)

      • Vegan Beauty YouTubers
      These YouTubers may not all be professionals, but following them will keep you updated on the vegan beauty world and let you know which products perform best.

      Beauty Addict Next Door

      By the time you've finished your colossal YouTube binge of the above channels, it'll be time for next week's post about a vital part of makeup artistry that is often overlooked!

      Til Next Time,