I've had a few people ask me about vegan hair care recently and realized that I hadn't done a post on Giovanni Cosmetics - a great company that I first heard about though our favourite online store: Vegan Beauty. Giovanni are based in California where they manufacture a nice selection of cosmetic products composed of natural ingredients in Eco-friendly packaging. None of their products have ever been tested on animals and with the exception of their lip balms and the Magnetic Hair Care range (which contains lactoferrin) all of their products are vegan. This includes VEGAN HAIRSPRAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! There is no limit to the excitement I have for this product - especially as I managed to get my hands on a bottle recently and it's really great stuff - I'd highly recommend it to all of you. As well as being cruelty free and vegan this product gains extra bonus points as it comes in a spritzer bottle rather than a pressurized can which means no nasty CFCs either!!! Excellent.... Giovanni, you've found yourselves a life long customer :)
I'd like to share with you this little beauty of a product: Studio High Definition Powder from E.L.F (Eyes Lips Face) Cosmetics. I discovered it a couple of years ago when working on a film in Sydney. The camera we were shooting on was very new and of the super intense HD variety - news which immediately put me on the case of ensuring that I had a good range of HD friendly makeup at my disposal. When looking for a good translucent powder the first product I came across was Makeup Forever's HD powder which had great reviews and comes at $48 a pot. Luckily I continued my research and stumbled across this little beauty which is pretty much exactly the same with one major difference - its only costs $12!! Plus there's the fact that all of E.L.F's cosmetic ingredients happen to be certified vegan friendly and cruelty free by both Leaping Bunny and P.E.T.A - something which unfortunately Makeup Forever currently fall short on on both accounts...
This product is really wonderful - its very fine and smooth, completely translucent and is perfect for setting makeup for the all seeing eye of the HD camera. Simply buff a small amount into the skin with a kabuki brush and your makeup is set, shine free and ready to film!
E.L.F cosmetics have a large line of very reasonably priced cosmetics (the rest of which I have yet to try) and are available via national websites in Australia, the USA and some of Europe including the UK, France & Germany. Visit their websites to check out their full range and get this amazingly valued addition to your kit.
*Do note that E.L.F's some of E.L.F.s brushes contain horse hair - however I've been assured that the professional line is 100% synthetic.
The term "Maximum Tolerated Dose" refers to an animal/human experiment which is still used to determine the highest levels of a chemical that a group of test subjects can withstand without dying due to toxicity. As I'm sure you can imagine to determine such a dosage often has fatal consequenses for a horrific number of subjects and let's face it - they're not really going to be doing these tests on human are they?
Canadian director Karol Orzechowski has borrowed the term to title his new documentary - the first feature length investigation into the hidden world of animal testing and vivisection. Containing footage and testimonials from former lab workers who had a change of heart about their work as well as charting the lives of the animals who have suffered in 'the name of science', Orzechowski's documentary is said to approach an old debate with new insight and is set to become a very important work for the animal rights movement. Since it's release in Canada, the States and the UK last year M.T.D has won Best Feature for Animal Advocacy at the Artivist Film Festival in California and was the proud recipient of the first LUSH Public Awareness Prize.
For those of us hanging around in the Great Down Under - Maximum Tolerated Dose will soon be premiering in Melbourne (5th Feb) and Sydney (12th Feb). Visit Humane Research to book tickets to the screening and a Q&A session with the director.
To find out more visit the Official Website and join their Facebook Page
Have you ever watched a movie where the heroine's lipstick stays magically in place no matter what she does? Glasses of wine, passionate rendez vous, underwater adventures, apocalyptic battle scenes - yet still she somehow manages to come through it all with perfectly coloured lips. 'Ridiculous!' you think, and you'd be right - unless perhaps she'd discovered Lip Ink...
The wonderful people over at Lip Ink International recently sent me a vial of their signature product to play with and I must admit I've fallen a little bit in love with it... It's amazingly long lasting, smudge proof - and the colour (Cherry) is just absolutely delicious! I applied my Lip Ink in the morning and after 6 hours, numerous cups of tea and a cheeky little lunch I was delighted to see that my lips were still bright and colourful and only required minimal touch ups, really quite amazing!
To apply - first clean your lips with the remover then using a thin brush line your lips with Lip Ink to create the shape you want. (Lining is not essential but as Lip Ink is a liquid I found it's very helpful to do so to prevent the colour from bleeding and to achieve a defined shape.) Next apply a tiny amount of the Lip Shine to moisturize the lips, allow this to be absorbed and then follow by sweeping a layer of Lip Ink using the provided applicator. You can build up the colour as much or as little as you like - another great thing about this product- just make sure that you allow each layer to dry between applications. I found that 3-4 layers gave me depth of colour and opacity that I wanted, and I really loved the results.
Once you're happy with the colour finish up by applying a layer of Lip Shine and voila! Beautiful smudge free lips! To tidy up any edges use a tiny amount of the remover on a clean applicator, and then apply a small amount of concealer with a brush for a perfectly defined lip line.
If you're after a more subtle look this works great as a lip stain too: skip the liner and apply a small amount of Lip Conditioner before dabbing a small amount on Lip Ink to the centre of your bottom lip and blending gently out with a clean applicator or finger.
My only gripe with this product is that after a few hours it takes on a slightly rough texture and gets very very tiny cracks, however I think this may be resolved by making sure you keep your lips moisturized. It could be beneficial to smile while applying Lip Ink. This product is alcohol based - as the alcohol evaporates the colour adheres to your lips forming a very thin skin-like layer - therefor ensuring that the lips are taunt while applying should prevent slight cracking when you smile and the skin on your lips stretches.
All in all I'm definitely a huge fan of this clever little product and am dying to get my hands on more colours from their amazing range. It's the perfect product for day and night wear, and I think it's going to prove a very useful ally for shoots and shows too. Best of all of course it's 100% cruelty free and vegan - hoorah for Lip Ink International!!
I'd like to share with you a new and exciting company I found recently: Vegan Faces is based in the UK and they make a great range of products including (drumroll please...) vegan facepaint, hoorah!!! All of their products are made by a professional cruelty-free make-up manufacturer, and include such deliciousness as organic avocado oil based lipsticks, pro-vitamin B-5 enriched mascara and organic mint lip shimmer so they're not only animal friendly but skin friendly too! As is this wasn't all awesome enough already they're also currently offering a 10% discount on all products AND free delivery on orders over £50 in the UK and over £75 worldwide. Head over to their website & online store to check them out and then bumble over to their Facebook page to get updates on delicious new products :)
I'd like to say a huge thank you to Furless Cosmetics who recently wrote to tell me that I'm the newest addition to their list of cruelty free makeup artists, hoorah! Furless are a PETA accredited vegan & cruelty free company who have a great range of synthetic brushes available for worldwide order. These include bamboo handled brushes like those made by ECOTOOLS, which are a personal favorite due to the fact that bamboo can be easily be grown and harvested sustainably & is of course biodegradable. Furless also make a range of mineral cosmetics and supply a multitude of accessorize such as bags and travel cases for your kit. Visit their website to have a cheeky peruse...
Last weekend I went to my first International Makeup Artist Trade Show (IMATS) in Sydney & had a wonderful time assisting the lovely & amazing body artist Yolanda Bartram at her Body FX stall. It was a really amazing weekend - though the show is considerably smaller than the one in London it was a great opportunity to see what the Australian makeup world has to offer and to meet some really awesome people. I especially enjoyed meeting Eliza Campagna and Brian Sipe and watching their demos over the weekend at the ACMUSE stand, Donna Mee's highly informative talks on working in the industry - and meeting the one and only R2D2 & his creator who were cruising around the show on Sunday afternoon. Big thanks also to the amazing Adam Johanson, the lovely girls at The Face Paint Shop and TK's Lashes, Christine & Nick from Scotty's and the guys from Frends Beauty Supply. It was great to meet all of you & I'm looking forward to seeing you again - hopefully some of you in the not too distant future!
Over the last few years I have been privileged enough to work alongside some amazing people - make-up artists, photographers, costumiers, music producers, event companies....every collaboration brings with it new friends & sources of inspiration and it seems only fitting that I share these amazing people with you. With this in mind I have been working to give the Links page a make-over so I can give these wonderful folk some of the praise and admiration they deserve and you can see for yourselves just how awesome they are.
First up is the wonderful Grace McComisky - an amazingly creative & passionate freelance makeup artist & undoubtedly my favourite person in the world to collaborate with, Grace is highly skilled in all areas of the art. From stunning beauty make-ups & imaginative prosthetics to intricately hand knotted wigs & custom made props this girl can make just about anything with her hands & always with beautiful results! As well freelancing she runs her own company - the wonderful Happy Slap Boutique - & has worked on a large variety of productions including Tim Burton's Dark Shadows & the upcoming World War Z. Grace is always excited about new collaborations no matter how big or small so don't be shy about getting in touch! Visit her website to learn more and have a sneaky peek at her portfolio, then check out the Links Page to check out more amazing people!
Over the last year I found myself doing a lot of research into food production and subsequently into animals rights. I decided to become vegan in November, a decision which has influenced not only what I eat but also the products I use. I thoroughly believe that all living things have the right to live a free, happy pain free life and I absolutely refuse to support any company partakes in harfmul practices. As a make up artist I have quite a sizable kit and to my horror I've discovered that a few products which I use and love either contain animal derived ingredients or have been tested on animals. Needless to say I am less than happy about this and have set myself a goal of assembling a completely cruelty free kit - from brushes to bases I want to find products from ethical companies which have caused no pain in their production. I also want to find products that use organic ingredients and stay well clear from harmful chemicals or GM ingredients. So from now on, whenever I run out of something it will be replaced with vegan friendly products and I will share what I find right here in a new section which I'm putting together.
To get started check out the list of accredited cruelty free companies by clicking here - if you have one of those snazzy iphone jobbies you can download a FREE handy app as well to keep you updated! How good is that?
We can start with one awesome company that I found a few months ago: ECOTOOLS. These guys really are awesome, they make really great cruelty free brushes with synthetic fibers, bamboo handles and recycled aluminum ferrules. Unlike some synthetic brushes these are incredibly soft and very well made - you'll have a hard time believing they're not made from hair! Their selection is still quite small but the ones available are all sorts of awesome and I thoroughly recommend them. They also make bath products and make up bags - and even use responsible packaging.
If anyone out there has any recommendations please feel free to contact me and let me know!
Isn't it just brilliant when things come together? I've just had a lovely evening with Satya James doing a very feisty Geisha shoot showcasing a beautiful Japanese inspired dress. The dress was beautiful, the model was an absolute diamond, the photographer was a total star, the space was just fantastic... and the hair and make up looked pretty damn good too - I'm a very happy girl right now. I had a sneaky peak at the photos and am so so excited about getting them next week and being able to share them - so watch this space! In the meantime why not entertain yourself by checking out my friend Luca Riboni and his beautiful photography - go to my Links page or click here to visit his Flickr portfolio .