Bridal Make Up Must Haves

There is no question when you’re the bride, the attention is at you. And only you. Oh okay, sometimes the spotlight curves to the teary maid of honor, maybe at the tensed groom, or at the stunning flower arrangement. But mostly the attention’s at the bride. With that, it is a must that the bride looks all dolled up. All. The. Time. Perhaps 1,001 cameras will be  present at the wedding day not counting the photo and video team you hired especially for the event. Now question is, will you like if your face gets oily before the Ultimate Wedding Kiss or dare lose the color of your lipstick in the middle of the ceremony? Me neither.

The biggest problem of bridal makeup is staying power. True, right after the make up is done the bride looks astounding, exquisite, and breathtaking. But what about 2 hours later? A retouch every hour is out of question. (Can you imagine a make up artist powdering the bride while the officiating priest is preaching?) Makeup application matters but the kind of makeup use matters a lot as well. You’re going to be a bride once at (22? 25?29?), so don’t be frugal when it comes to yourself. It only reflects how much value you’ve given yourself compare to…  the wedding venue.

On the photo above are the tried and tested, research-based, on-hand make up products I use for bridal make up purposes.

First things first, prime your skin:

Benefit The Porefessional– for normal to combination skin

Clarins Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch– for extremely oily skin. This is rather very expensive, but yes, truly holds oil for hours.

Second, foundation all the way:

Revlon Colorstay Foundationmy number one choice of foundation. I haven’t tried other foundations so I’m very welcome with suggestions.

Third, conceal the imperfections:

Bobbi Brown Corrector in Peach– women all over the world won’t rave about this product for nothing. Number one undereye concealer for me.

Fourth, powder lightly to set the make up:

Bobbi Brown Sheer Finish Loose Powder– I learned about this when Georgina Wilson and Solenn Heusaff recommended this to Ingrid Holm (internet friend since high school) and Ingrid, in turn, shared it to the world.

Fifth, apply eye shadow and eye liner that suits your theme:

Eye shadow brands vary depending on the color I’m looking for but my personal favorites are Lancome, Estee Lauder and Elizabeth Arden. But really, it doesn’t matter. The universe has 1,000,000,000 eye shadow and eye liner brands so better use the ones you have always prefer.

But before that, you have to prime your eye lids first to make the color last. Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion can give that.

Sixth, don’t forget the mascara:

Christian Dior DiorShowas explained here. If you don’t like the extra weight falsies give, better use powerful mascara for the top lashes. And reserve waterproof mascaras for the bottom lashes, like for an example, Maybelline Great Lash Mascara. 

Seventh, the hush blush:

Nars Blush in Orgasm-ah yes, the blush that Angelina Jolie made famous. Of course, it depends upon the bride’s skin tone. But I have to say Orgasm pretty much suits all skin tone. It has a peachy pink, glowing effect that screams “Seriously, I am in love.”

Eighth, lipstick baby:

MAC Lip Pencil in Spice is an absolute favorite. The color is almost a twin to our natural lip color. For lipsticks, I admire Revlon, Lancome, MAC, Estee Lauder, and Shiseido. I have yet to try the others.

Ninth, set everything and you’re done:

MAC Fix Spray. This locks everything. Mist a few times 8-12 inches away from your face.

Now, dear bride, you’re ready to face your groom, the world and 1,001 cameras.

Aside from the products I mentioned here, suggestions are very welcome. Personally, I love weddings and I only want the best for my clients.


Yes, ferocious

Whenever you hear the description “ferocious make up”, what comes into your mind? Dark, intimidating eyes? Luscious, illuminating lips? This has been my favorite combination when going out for a party or even an important event like this link.

With my two event organizer friends, Karla Singson to my right and Kat Ferrer to my left.

Close up photo my my make up. I can’t find a more decent photo than this one. Sarreh.

Photo by DJ Tadena

I was inspired to sport an exaggerated cat eye liner but I don’t want to end up looking like this girl. To achieve the hella sexy cat eyes without the extra strength, I swapped the traditional black eye liner to a purple eyeshadow. Using an angled brush, I used the purple shadow as eye liner. Better skip the blush on for this look. I used a gold highlighter sparingly on top of cheekbones, across the forehead and on the nose bridge. Top off with a pale pink lipstick. Viola, you’re now ready to rule the event.🙂

Make up products used:


The Faceshop Angel Skin Make Up Base

Maybelline Clear Smooth Minerals Liquid Foundation in Apricot Sand

Maybelline Clear Smooth Minerals Powder Foundation in Light Ochre

L’Oreal True Match Concealer in Warm

Fanny Serrano Concealer in Chestnut

Victoria Jackson Highlighter in Gold


Nichido Waterproof Eye Pencil in Dark Brown (used in brows)

Maybelline Eye liner in Black Noir (the one that got lost)

Maybelline Pulse Perfection Vibrating Mascara in Very Black

Lancome Color Design Eye shadow in Nutmeg (entire lid)

Lancome  Color Design Eye shadow in Lezard (used as an eye liner)

Lancome Color Design Eye shadow in Honeymoon (browbone)


Maybelline Color Sensational Lipstick in Angel Rose

Professional Make Up Brush Cleaner by Angelo Falconi

Professional Make Up Brush Cleaner by Angelo Falconi III

Before my discovery of the above lovely products, I had been using the water+anti-bacterial dish washing liquid+coconut oil method in cleaning my brushes. It cleans thoroughly yet drying time takes 1-2 days. As you know waiting is painful.

Ate Mae Ann introduced me to Angelo Falconi’s brush cleaners sometime last July, during Abreeza’s Bridal Fair. I was there to show some love and support to Luxelab Make Up Artistry. In return, the girls (Tiny and Mae Ann) presented their new discovery to me.

Each bottle is different. The one with a spray nozzle (left bottle) is for brushes dipped in powders. The bottle on the right (minus the spray nozzle, I don’t know what you call that kind of opening) has stronger potency so it is for brushes soaked with creams and liquids.

Here, allow me to demonstrate.

Using the brush cleaner extra strength in cleaning the lip brush

That lip brush was used in my recent wedding makeup gig. Creams and liquids are stubborn to remove. This is the reason why extra potency is needed for cleaning brushes doused in such. The power of the brush cleaner is just amazing because you can really see right before your eyes the dirty liquids and creams all hammered in your brush wearing off.

brush cleaner regular strength for cleaning the medium eye shadow brush

Eye shadow brushes, powder brush, blush brush, contour brush and the likes are usually used for picking up powders. This type of makeup can be easily removed. That is why the brush cleaner used is the one with the regular strength only.


1. Shake both bottle before using. I mean it, shake very well.

2. Pour small amount in a bowl or jar. It has to be made of glass. Have one bowl for the extra strength and another for the regular strength.

3. Swirl the brush part, just that part, until clean. Never dip a brush above the bristle area. Do that and you will decrease the lifespan of your brushes.

4. Dry the brushes using a tissue, paper towels or terry cloth. Whenever I mention tissue, I refer to the non-feeble types. I know you get my drift.🙂

5. Let it dry for a few minutes.

Special direction: For big brushes, just spray the brush cleaner with regular strength (the spray nozzle one, of course) then sweep back and forth in a tissue or paper towel.

Boy, it really dries fast. I no longer have to wait for days before my brushes dry up. I can even use it in during consecutive make up application, cleaning the foundation brush in between clients. The finish smell is kinda minty-ish. It may come as too strong for some noses but not for me. I love the aromatic, minty smell of my brushes afterwards.

As a makeup artist, I have to emphasize the importance of cleaning your makeup brushes every after using it. Not only a flawless make up application is of great value, but hygiene should be outstanding, too. Really, you don’t want your client to catch a fungal infection, do you? When a makeup artist brings in filthy, smelly brushes to the set/studio, better tell her to leave. Uh oh, that is simply unglamorous. And disgusting, really.

I was told by Mr. Falconi himself that the products are only available in the salon Hair Studio at Gaisano Mall and SM City. By the way, he’s the chief make up artist in Hair Studio. Each bottle costs P400.

Launching “Looks IRL”

Okay, I usually don’t like using my face for makeup look samples because I have issues Sigmund Freud can’t even help dissipate. But since I’m calling myself a professional makeup artist, I have to be my own product. If I can’t make myself look good in makeup and prove it to the world, how will the others believe me I can make them look good in makeup too? Right, right. So here it is, ladies and gentlemen, I am officially launching Looks In Real Life. For easier communication, let’s call it Looks IRL. I know, sounds awkward.

For starters, I’d post a makeup look I sported last week during a cheesy beachside date night with boyfriend. I call this “All Things Bright and Peachy.”

Excuse me for the pained expression

I didn’t want to overwhelm my boyfriend with full makeup. I skipped eyeshadows and opted to go for luscious lips and glowing cheeks. Peach is the color a morena should trust. You can never go wrong with peach if you have a warm skin tone.


Natasha Beauty Skin Perfect Tinted Mattifier

Maybelline Clear Smooth Minerals Liquid Foundation in Apricot Sand

Estee Lauder Translucent Loose Powder in Light/Medium Intensity 2

Fanny Serrano Concealer in Chestnut (for pimple scars)

Fanny Serrano Powder Blush in Peach Blossom (used as main blush)

Fanny Serrano Powder Blush in Gold Peach (used as a highlighter)


Maybelline Pulse Perfection Vibrating Mascara in Very Black

Fanny Serrano Eyebrow Pencil in Light Brown

L’Oreal True Match Concealer in Warm (undereye, 1st layer)

Natasha Beauty Perfect Cover Concealer Stick in Caramel (undereye, 2nd layer)

Natasha Beauty Eyeliner in Black

Natasha Beauty Eyeliner in White


Natasha Beauty Lush Lips in Passioni

Fanny Serrano Liquid Lipstick in Light Peach

Excuse the flash, this is the reason why my skin looks so darn pale. But in real life, I’m your morena babe. With a fat, rat face. And fatter cheeks. And disheveled hair.

Review: Natasha Beauty Skin Perfect Tinted Mattifier

How important is a makeup base? The makeup base will make your makeup last. The foundation will hold on to the makeup base instead of your skin. So, it acts as a barrier from your skin to the first layer of foundation (or concealer, whichever comes first). This is especially important for people who have sensitive and oily skin. Normally, the foundation will wear off if your skin starts to produce oil like crazy and sweat like a pig. (Yes, damn this country for being too darn hot.) This is why you have to own a makeup base that fits the needs of your skin.

Girls, the search for my perfect makeup base is finished. I never thought what I had been looking for is just right here in our country. For months, I’ve been looking for a makeup base that fits my combination, morena skin. And above all, a product that really works despite the crazy weather conditions of Philippines. Introducing Skin Perfect Tinted Mattifier from Natasha Beauty. The first time I used it, I instantly fell in love.

Natasha Beauty Skin Perfect Tinted Mattifier

The product is indeed a YAY for the following reasons:

1. It evens out my skin considering it only has 1 shade. According to the product description, one shade fits all. And it’s true then. My sister has a different complexion than mine and the product worked the same magic on her. I also used it during photo shoots.

2. It has a matte finish, leaving your skin feeling smooth and silky. I really hate the oily finish several makeup bases give.

3. The amazing ability to tone down angry veins and larger than life pores.

4. It is cheap. P650 for one tube. If I will use a product every day, it has to be very affordable. The type that if ever it runs out, I wouldn’t hesitate to horde.  From my estimation, one tube can last up to months of use, 2 to 3 months.

And the NAY part? Well, the product isn’t available in malls. You have to go the nearest Natasha branch in order to purchase it. That, or order it from a Natasha dealer.

Here are some raw photos for demonstration purposes:

Without the makeup base

As you can see, the green veins are visible. Yeah, I have hands like that of a grandma.

One tiny dot of Skin Perfect Tinted Mattifier

After product application

See, less visible angry green veins and smoother finish.🙂

The verdict? I can see myself using this product for the rest of the year. And next year, too.


Someone Famous

One of the perks of being a makeup artist is the chance of having to work with the celebrated heroes of a certain craft, be it on my own or another’s. In my case, I had the lucky chance of brushing elbows with Atty. Raymond Fortun. Yes, the famous Filipino lawyer of celebrities and politicians. I get to witness the other side of his life as a passionate photographer documenting grooms heavy with happiness and teary-eyed brides. I get to see what he’s like outside of courts.

JCI Daba-Daba Davaoena, which I am a proud member of, conducted a Fashion and Wedding Photography Workshop last August 19 in Davao City. Atty. Raymond Fortun was the speaker for the Wedding category and Juvy Aben Abion for the Fashion.

This workshop was memorable not only because I worked with Atty. Fortun but also, I get to be a photo shoot model for the first time. One model (another member of JCI Daba-Dabao Davaoena) backed the last minute due to work problems and so the production team thought I was deem suited for the vacant job. I said yes, primarily out of pressure.

The experience. Hmmm. Was it fun to be a model? Yes. Others think that modelling is purely a fabulous job but boy, it is damn hard. It was pretty obvious I wasn’t used being in front of the camera. I had a difficult time but the participants were so nice to guide me all throughout the afternoon. But I think I’d still stick to my passion and behind the camera.

Okay, I’ll stop talking now. Here are the output of some of the participants.


The workshop would not be successful without the helpful hands of our sponsors: Axia Jewelries for the accessories, Natasha Beauty for the makeup, Wedding Belles for the gowns and Casa Maria for the location.

The speakers, models, prod team.. literally everyone except me

Here’s a clearly fan sign picture minus the signature I pestered one participant to take. Bleh.

That's me beside Atty. Fortun weeeeee

**Photo credits to J. Aben Abion, Rudolph Alama, Kirby Matalam and Leah Valle.

The Japanese Doll

Her name is Anri. Isn’t she lovely?

The original concept for this shoot was to channel Mariah Carey: rich gold-brown hair and lot and lots of wave and navel showing. For the makeup, I mixed colors hinting coppers, bronze, and mauve to compliment her skin and hair. It turned out pretty great. By the way, this was a stat photo shoot as I was called an hour before the shoot to do the makeup. But I’m not complaining. And never will. She’s probably one of the friendliest girls in town despite her stunning good looks. I wish she’s my younger sister. But I think that would be hard to prove to the world.🙂

What do you guys think?