Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Easy and Fast Airbrush Makeup Eyeshadow and Flawless Skin with Dinair -Video Tutorial

100% Dinair Airbrush Makeup
As the year draws to a close, so does our series of posts and reviews on Dinair, the first creators of beauty airbrush makeup and one of the most dynamic and prolific brands in the market today.
To mark the occasion we chose a look that is a celebration of color, and while this doesn't have much to do with the Holidays, it certainly showcases Dinair's primary achievement: an incredible range of products that allow both professional and consumers to easily create stunning makeup looks. 

Dinair Airbrush Eyeshadow
For this look we have used a combination of several different Dinair lines. We used the classic Glamour line for highlights on the eyes and on the face, and also for blush, contouring and eyebrows.  Our eyeshadow whas achieved by layering colors from the Glamour line (Vanilla, Mauve, Cutie Pie) with a touch of Shimmer (Gold) and finally the amazingly pigmented, ultra resistant Colair Opalescent line (Blood Orange), which was also used a a final touch of strobing highlight (Cashmere).

Although we edited some repetitious actions out, our video shows the colors as they are being applied in real time and with no "filters", whatever that might have come to mean today. We hope that the images will show how easy airbrush makeup really is once you have mastered a few basic techniques, and how rewarding the results. 

100% Dinair Airbrush Makeup
Of course as we were writing the reviews in this series, that eventually stretched into almost two months, new products saw the light at Dinair's headquarters in LA. We have already ordered a few and are anxiously waiting for our New York liason to carry them across the ocean for us, and as always we are excited to review and demonstrate them in the near future. 

Thank you Dinair, the adventure continues...

100% Dinair Airbrush Makeup
The look in the video tutorial and in these images was inspired by a makeup created by Italian makeup artist Simona Nappi. You can view the original video here.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Concealing Vitiligo, Hyper Pigmentation, Discoloration and Tattoos with Colair Xtreme Airbrush Makeup

I'm going to go out on a limb for this post, as I almost never do, and state that Dinair's Colair Xtreme is the most underrrated revolutionary product to come out of the beauty industry in recent years
Colair Xtreme is an extremely highly pigmented foundation line created to block out and conceal anything from tattoos to discoloration of hyper pigmentation on the body and on the face. 
The product applies very quickly, and its coverage power is so high that you don't need to color correct to even out the area before application. This allows you to save considerable time and money, but if that wasn't enough, you also get another amazing advantage: durability. Xtreme is extraordinarily resistant to rubbing, and totally water proof. As a result, the coverage will last pretty much intact until you take it off. The formula is water based, and can be mixed with or topped by any other Dinair product.

Using Colair Xtreme in beauty or corrective makeup is very easy, and good results can be achieved by anyone. Because of its high blocking power, the final effect will tend to look very uniform, something which may not be always ideal if you are striving for the most natural look, but keep in mind that you can use it on the affected area only and then top it with any other Dinair foundation. I would also avoid using this product over symptoms of an active skin condition such as flaring acne or flaking psoriasis. In theses cases you may want to consider other Dinair Lines more suitable for these purposes, such as Camouflage/Paramedical or even the more basic Glamour line. However if you are looking for something that will block out a situation such as a birth mark or a tattoo, Xtreme will be the most effective choice, and a professional makeup artist will know how to break up the seamless finish created by this product with the necessary contouring and highlights, or even by recreating the original skin intrinsic coloring with translucent paints.

Which brings us to the world of Special Effects. If you are a professional makeup artist, you may have heard of PAX Paint, the mixture of Pros Aide glue and acrylic paint that is used in special effects and movies to achieve the most resistant coverage. Because of its very nature, PAX is not the healthiest choice for prolonged use and it is certainly a huge pain to clean from the airbrush afterward. Xtreme is a very viable cosmetic alternative to PAX that is much safer to use and much easier to remove from your tools using Dinair's standard Airbrush Cleaner. As we said before this product can be mixed with or topped by any other beauty product. In special effects it will allow you to lay the base color on prosthetics incredibly fast, and won't budge when painted over with any other makeup, including alcohol based colors. 

I really hope that both the beauty and the SFX world will realize soon the incredible potential that this amazing formula represents, and that the line will be expanded from the current 14 colors to match the full range of foundations available from Dinair. 

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Airbrushing hair with Dinair Hair Colair! Review and Video Tutorial

Last week we wrote an easy guide to the many products available in the extraordinary Dinair catalogue. This week I'd like to focus on a couple of lesser known gems available from this catalogue, and I will start with the most unusual one, and one of the most interesting for all the pros out there: airbrush makeup for hair!

There are many occasions when we'd like to be able to alter our own or someone else's hair quickly and temporarily. We may want to cover roots that are starting to show, put in temporary highlights for a special occasion, conceal thin patches or achieve a fuller mane look, or fix another temporary dye that may have started to fade. Dinair has come up with two lines of products that allow us to triumph in any of the above listed circumstances. 

Dinair Hair Colair Highlights is a range of twelve shades matching pretty much any hair color, whether directly out of the bottle or after a little mixing with a complementary shade. These colors have a shimmering consistency that allows them to cover darker tones (such as roots) with lighter ones, and the possibilities they offer are practically endless. Even the blackest hair can be streaked effectively with these colors, and it is incredibly easy, as we show in our video. Simply apply on clean hair, allow a couple of minutes to dry completely, then style as desired. Combing or brushing will not remove the color, it will only make it look more natural: thanks to a small percentage of cosmetic alcohol present in the formula of these colors, the application will last undisturbed until the hair is washed. 
The short video tutorial included in this post shows how the products were used fix the hair of one of our model whose hair was showing dark roots and a lingering bluish hue from a previous salon applied temporary dye. While the shimmer of the pigment might be evident right after the product is sprayed, it soon appears perfectly natural as soon as it is dry, and the overall result is amazing. The video also shows another application on a more mature model who had a lot of creative streaking in her hair that we muted successfully with the shade Chestnut. 

Dinair Hair Colair Shadows has a further seven shades that are totally matte, and that can be used for an even subtle, totally natural coverage of regrowth or thin spots. It can be applied directly to the scalp as well as the hair, and it alcohol components will guarantee it stays put until shampooed. This line is also ideal for man grooming to conceal white hair and to fill in and even out a beard. 

Dinair has a further line of Vivid colors to be used for semi permanent, amazing effects on the hair, and we will review that in the near future. 

Before and After Dinair Airbrush Makeup on Hair!

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

What kind of airbrush makeup? An unbiased guide to Dinair products.

100% Dinair Airbrushed Eyeshadow
Dinair was the first brand in the world to make airbrush makeup commercially available to both professional makeup artists and consumers alike. Founded by Dina Ousley and partner George Lampman in 1981, this family run company is stronger than ever and remains the most dynamic brand in the airbrush makeup field today. With so many products and innovations coming through at a fast pace, we thought we would lay out an easy guide to the brand for those who approach it for the first time.  
TIPS: Can't find a specific product in a section of Dinair's website? Try using their search button in the top right corner of each page! In this article will only be describing makeup products. If you are looking for equipment information please read our Kit Review.

Product Composition and Available Sizes

All of Dinair products are water based. Some lines (Paramedical, Fantasy, Hair Colair) have a small percentage of high grade cosmetic alcohol to render them extra resistant to water and rubbing. This makes the products very healthy and extremely safe for any skin type, with no known allergic reaction in the 35 year history of the product existence.
All the colors come in four sizes: tester (.12 oz), small (.25 oz), medium (.50 oz) and large (1.15 oz).  Of course as the size increases the price becomes more convenient, however even the very small tester size can yield many uses, and certainly enough to figure out if you like the color or product before committing to a larger investment: a .12 oz small bottles contains 50 drops approximately, enough for 7 foundation or 14 eyeshadow applications on a conservative estimate. The testers are also super handy to carry with you when you travel.
For quick reference and a guide to each color's undertones please download the free pdf of the latest Dinair Color Chart.

The Foundation Lines

Dinair has four foundation lines available in 20 equivalent shades:
-Dinair Glamour is the first line in the brand's history and it is still a strong customer favorite. It has the most natural and imperceptible finish while retaining great coverage, very good water and rub resistance. It is perfect for those wishing to achieve a totally natural, undetectable makeup, and it also ideal for men grooming. TIP: The matte finish can be easily be balanced if necessary by airbrushing a natural glow such as Dinair's Moist & Dewy or refined Jojoba Oil on top of the makeup.
-Colair Radiance has a satin/matte finish and a softer, more comfortable finish that make the final result very similar to what you would get using a silicone based products. It is less undetectable than Glamour but still very natural, and with twice the pigment content it offers superior coverage and greater resistance to rub and water. It has a very subtle intrinsic luminosity that makes it ideal for everybody and very suitable for more mature skin.
-Colair Soft Glow as the name suggests has a very subtle glow factor intended to blur imperfections optically. It is closer in texture to Glamour with a powdery matte finish that makes it ideal for normal oily skin, and a favorite for bridal makeup.
-Dinair Paramedical (Camouflage) is a water and high grade cosmetic alcohol based formula that allows for greater coverage and it rub resistant and water proof. It is especially indicated for correcting problematic skin conditions while still allowing the pores to breathe (i.e it's non-comedogenic). It can be used as a correcting and priming base on which to layer the other lines of foundation.

Tattoo /Serious Skin Imperfections Cover

-Colair Extreme is a very powerful product that can be used to cover tattoos and very evident skin conditions such as birth marks, vitiligo, strong rosacea and such. It has total blocking power and does not require color correcting, and it's totally water proof and rub resistant, with a long lasting finish under almost any circumstance. TIPS: Because of its extreme pigment content the finish tends to look very uniform, however this be softened by using Extreme under or even mixed with any other Dinair foundation line. Colair Extreme has also enormous potential in the special effects field, where it represents a valid cosmetic alternative to Pax paint, allowing artists to paint base tones on prosthetics extremely fast and with excellent results.

Eyeshadows, Eyeliner, Blush and Lip colors

With airbrush makeup any color can be used for any desired purpose. The difference is not in the formulation, but in the concentration and in the style of application. For example a shade of pink can easily be used as eyeshadow, blush, or even as a lip stain. Dinair's website usefully points out what colors maybe ideal for what use, and you should visit each section to make sure you see all the available shades. Having said that all colors are divided in three main groups according to their finish:
-Dinair Glamour: this is a group of  matte colors that are very easy to blend yet very pigmented. TIP: To ensure a durable, crease free application it is best to moisturize the eye lid and then to remove any excess oils with a mattifying lotion or even with Dinair Airbrush Cleaner (this may sound funny but given its organic, non toxic formula the cleaner lends itself beautifully for this purpose). 
-Dinair Shimmer: a further 24 beautiful shimmering shades. TIP: lid prep applies as described above. Some of the lighter shades have lots of pigment and shimmering particles, so remember to shake well before applying and you may need to rinse the airbrush with some water and /or cleaner after using them before proceeding to the next colors.
-Colair Opalescent: an ever growing group of 27 opalescent shades which are amazingly pigmented, water proof and rub resistant, yet water based. TIP: in spite of their high pigmentation, these colors can be layered to obtain the most subtle gradients, with truly amazing results. 
-Colair Matte: this is the latest addition to the Dinair range and the first six colors have just been released. They promise to be as pigmented and resistant as their opalescent counterparts, but with a matte finish.
-Colair Eyebrows: while makeup for eyebrows has always been achievable with the shades in the Glamour range, this new addition has six specific shades with the improved pigmentation, durability and resistance you have come to expect from the Colair range.

Effects and Fantasy Makeup

-Dinair Fantasy is a line of 13 beautiful vivid colors in a water and cosmetic grade alcohol base for improved resistance. TIP: These shades are amazing and can be used safely as eyeshadows as well. They can be mixed with any other Dinair color.
-Colair Electric: seven ultra bright shades that are water based with superior water and rub resistance. They can be used for fantasy makeup or as eyeshadows by themselves or mixed with any other Dinair Color.

Airbrushing Hair

-Hair Colair Highlights: this is a range of colors that can be used to cover roots or to create beautiful highlights on any original hair color: their particular pigmentation means that they are visible even on very dark hair, allowing for a world of possibilities. The application will last until the hair is washed.
-Hair Colair Shadows: these seven shades have a more natural matte finish that allows for the most natural root cover. They can also be used to fill in sparse scalp areas (alopecia) or to fill in beard spots in the most natural way. 
-Vivid Hair Colors: eight amazing shades of semi permanent hair colors for stunning effects lasting up until 15 shampoos. TIP:Please read the instructions on the page carefully before using this product.

Essential Complements

-Dinair Airbrush Cleaner has been reformulated a couple of years ago and it has dramatically improved to become absolutely essential. It is organic, non toxic and removes all of Dinair makeup from the airbrush like a breeze, even the very persistent Colair Extreme. Used with the genius Cleaning Caps system it allows you to keep you airbrush pristine and looking like new after every use. It can also be used as a mattifying agent on the skin to remove excess oil. While formulated for Dinair, it removes other brands of water based makeup from any system just as easily. 
-Dinair Deep Clean Clog Remover is the ultimate airbrush problem solver. When normal cleaning fails to restore the airbrush to perfect functionality, this genius liquid will take care of the situation with very little effort. TIP: Please do read the instructions on the bottle carefully. As most clogs happen in the nozzle of the airbrush, you can simply fill a small cap of Deep Clean and soak the nozzle of your airbrush (whatever the model or brand) for fifteen minutes. Then clean the nozzle with a synthetic brush, soak again for a fifteen minutes, reassemble and rinse: problem gone!
-Dinair Makeup Sealer is a lesser known, less advertised product that in our opinion should not be missing from any kit. This airbrushable sealer will greatly improve the water resistance of the applied makeup, making more resilient to heavy water exposure. It is indispensable for special occasions.

Non Airbrushable Complements

-Dinair Under Eye Concealers have the same composition and are available in the same shades of the airbrush foundations but are in cream form. They are very useful when correcting a problematic under eye area or when a person is particularly sensitive to air being blown close to the open eyes. They create the perfect base for a light airbrush pass, and like any concealer they must be used very sparingly and set with a very light dusting of powder to avoid accumulation in fine lines.
-Dinair Pucker Up! is a series of matte and recently added metallic lip stains. Even though they are not an airbrushable product they are worth mentioning for their incredible durability and their amazing payoff. The color "Vixen" may well be that ultimate true red we had been looking for through every brand, and it is our favorite lip color ever.




Thursday, November 10, 2016

Airbrush Makeup Hall of Fame: Robbie Miller

Robbie Miller
Robbie Miller was Head of Global Education at Dinair, the first legendary brand of airbrush makeup for the beauty industry created by Dina Ousley and George Lampman in 1981. Robbie's carrier in airbrushing is the stuff of dreams, in less than two years his passion and dedication allowed him to achieve amazing creative and professional results. While continuing in his role as instructor, Robbie actively collaborated on the creation of the first line of  airbrushable semi permanent hair colors called Dinair Vivid Hair, as well as securing a high profile collaboration for Dinair with TLC television network. It was a pleasure to sit down with him at Dinair's North Hollywood headquarters and ask him about his inspiring story.

Let's start with something about your background...
I grew up poor in West Virginia, in a little town of just three hundred people called Robson in the Appalachian Mountains,  then I moved to Virginia Beach and I went to Paul Mitchell school there, and that's where I was introduced to Dinair, through a workshop.

Model Zuzu wearing 100% Dinair makeup by Robbie Miller
Paul Mitchell is primarily a hairdressing school. How did you decide to focus on makeup?
I love hair but I really love makeup. The school's curriculum doesn't touch a lot on makeup so I was scared of it, but  then they brought this speaker in, her name was Jane and she was a representative of Dinair, and I thought "oh my God, I CAN do this type of makeup", it felt so easy and natural in my hands. So I just kept practicing more and more. 

Was your family supportive of your career choice?
Initially my dad thought that there was no money to be made in the beauty industry... but I proved him wrong! Of course there wouldn't be much in a small town, but in Los Angeles there certainly is a lot of money to be made from this craft. Now my parents are very happy to see me travel with Dina and do everything that we do...

How did airbrushing become your main focus?
Right out of beauty school I started working at a hair salon in Vigina Beach and I got really good at airbrushing, and being the only makeup artist who had perfected this skill the salon had me doing about five weddings a week!

How did the big move to LA come about, and how did you become Dinair's Head of Global Education?
Makeup and Hair airbrushed by Robbie Miller
When I moved to Los Angeles a little over a year ago I had never been here before. I just had a dream and a salon job that I had lined up previously. But Salon work is not for everyone and it really wasn't for me. So about two weeks after I moved here Jane (the lady who had taught me in my first Dinair workshop) passed away, and I posted on her memorial Facebook Page asking for a ride to her memorial service as she had meant a lot to me. The person that responded to that was actually Dina. So in the car I told her my story with Jane and she said to me "I'm going to make you and educator". About two weeks after that I was working for Dinair full time.

What an amazing story! So when you started learning was there any aspect of the technique that you thought was a little harder to master?
Well it took me a while to realize that airbrushing wasn't just putting product in this wand and pulling the lever. The airbrush is a tool and it takes practice  and the proper education to become an airbrush makeup artist. Of course color theory and placement still apply, but there are techniques that you need to learn as gradient, distance and pressure create different looks. As I was starting out I probably didn't realize all that. The most difficult thing to learn was probably eyeshadow and getting that blended look. It's all about how close you are, how far back you're pushing your lever and the angle that you are holding the airbrush at...

Hunger Games looks by Robbie Miller with Dinair
What's the most common mistake that your students do when they are learning airbrushing?
Definitely overspraying. Basically airbrushing is like having Photoshop in your hand, so you have to be very sparse and precise when covering the problem areas and then  apply a light pass on the rest to blend everything in, as opposed to a flat all over application.

Is there an aspect to the teaching that you enjoy less?
A lot of makeup artists just want to go straight to creating a look, but there are a few technical aspects that need to be taught before that. They aren't the funnest to teach but they are necessities because without the foundation techniques you will not be able to create the rest.
Dinair is one of the most dynamic brands in the makeup industry, with an incredible growth in the output of new lines in the last couple of years alone. What is your own favourite line?
Airbrushed grooming by Robbie Miller
I really like our Soft Glow foundation line. It really does stay put, and gives a nice glowing effect. Even though it was meant for oily skin types any type can wear it, and that's my go to. Each line we have is best suitable for a different skin type, but if I had to choose one to start my kit I would definitely go with Soft Glow. Then of course there is our Glamour line, which allows for the most natural looking skin. It's also the best for men grooming because it's undetectable. From a consumer's perspective, the fact that the airbrush wand is a "cool tool" also makes it easier for man to use for covering skin imperfections without thinking about it as makeup.

In your opinion what is the greatest misconception about airbrush makeup today?
There are actually two: one held by consumers and one made by pros. The consumers think it's too difficult, and the professionals think that they can't create the same look with the airbrush as they do with their brushes. Of course we live to prove them wrong [laughs].

Although it's only been a about two years from when you started with Dinair you have already been part of a lot of remarkable experiences. Which ones stand out so far?
The TLC Say Yes to the Dress filming experience was very exciting. The host of the program Monte Durham is a friend of mine from the same home town, so I suggested that he include makeup in his the show. He said he had been thinking about it and asked us if we'd be interested in collaborating on Say Yes to the Prom, so after months of planning and training artists all around the Country we were able to participate. We did a four city tour (New York, Miami, LA and Dallas) giving prom makeovers to deserving your girls who are less economically advantaged but have great academics. They received gorgeous dresses, jewellery, hair and makeup and then they were part of a runaway show. We had 120 airbrush makeup artists, 30 for each location, and it was great for them to be part of such a huge production. The show focused on four principal girls, and each of them was assigned a makeup artist so Dina and I plus two of our star artists were part of this group. [The show aired in May, 2016. Press coverage included a spread on People Magazine]

Robbie, Dina, the Dinair Team and Monte Durham on Say Yes to the Prom!

What is working with Dina like?
Working with Dina on Mario Lopez
Dina is such a wonderful mentor. She's an Emmy award makeup artist who has been in the industry for fifty years, has a celebrity clientele and still works on film and TV, yet she is humble and so giving. Dinair is the result of her love for the industry.

I know that you are also an actor, so was coming to LA a way to put your great passions together?
Yes, I love anything in front or behind the camera. I studied at Amy Pollard's school for improv and took acting classes on the East Coast, I just love creating for the camera, whether it's hair, makeup or performing it's all part of the same big dream...

What is the next dream you would like to achieve?
Being here at Dinair and being able to inspire new generations of  makeup artists to believe in themselves and their dreams, or helping someone like a burn victim with a workshop on camouflage, that is so much more rewarding to me than doing makeup in a salon. I love inspiring people to be the best they can, and whatever their dreams are to take a leap and believe in themselves. Right now I am writing a book on my journey in the past few years, and that will hopefully be completed soon, so I am very excited about that. 

Do you have any advice for new airbrush makeup artists?
Keep learning, don't just do foundation and blush. Get specialized. I know that the more specialized you are the more attention you get whenever you are on set. If you are quick and efficient they will remember that. Just as it happened in this last show for TLC. They told us makeup had never been on time before. We were able to get finished early every time with forty minutes to spare.

In May 2017 Robbie began a new adventure as an airbrush makeup educator, leaving Dinair to remain an independent affiliate of this legendary brand. 

Follow Robbie Miller on Instagram at: @airbrush_makeup_dude
Robbie and Team on shoot for Vogue Italia

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Tim Burton inspired Vampire Makeup with Nebula and Kryolan professional products

Airbrush Makeup with Nebula by Kryolan
Kryolan is one of the most famous brands of professional and theatrical makeup in the world. As Halloween approaches we were super excited to have another opportunity to try products from their catalogue to realize the Tim Burton inspired look you see in these photos and in the Video. My long time collaborator Angela had this long held dream or a vampire look that would include prosthetic cheek alterations in reminescent of Maleficent. The challenge was not an easy one, and now we're going to describe how we did it in a step by step tutorial, starting with the airbrushed beauty makeup and then revealing the process behind the proshtetics.

Step by step guide to our Vampire look:
The beauty makeup application can be recreated regardless of the prostethics. If you are curious about the prosthetic process you can find the relevant description at the end of this post.
Skin Prep: apply a light layer of Kryolan HD Micro Primer on the face, and then Kryolan Eye Shadow Primer on the eye area. Allow a couple of minutes so that these products can be absorbed. 

Foundation: mix 10 drops approx of Nebula Complexion Fir (the lightest shade in the Nebula foundation range) with as many drops of True White from the Nebula Vivid color group. You can mix the colors directly in the cup of your airbrush. Be sure to regulate the pressure of your compressor on the lowest usable setting, layering light passes until the desired consistency is achieved. For contouring you can use a mix with a darker foundation shade or a light gray achieved by mixing True White and True Black from the Nebula Vivid Range. As our prosthetic already cast a sufficient shadow we decided to enhance only the highlights by dabbing on a few drops of Liquid Brightness in Silver. As the Nebula base is totally waterproof we could apply this highlight without fear of compromising the foundation. 
Airbrushed with Nebula by Kryolan
Eyes: layering the red and black eyeshadow was super easy. Remember to keep the pressure as low as possible. Mix five drops of Nebula Iridescent in Luxurious Red and tre drops of Nebula Vivid in Fiery Red to obtain this beautiful red hue. After the main eyeshadow is applied blend Nebula Vivid in True Black on the mobile lid. This will enhance the contrast with the amazing Kryolan Contact Lenses n. 811. These lenses are perfect for a vampire look, and Kryolan's reputation guarantees their quality against cheaper but less safe alternatives available on line.
Lips: our Kryolan 18 Color Lip Palette already contained LC404, which the perfect shade of lipstick for this look. Angela added depth to the lips design by adding two different types of artificial blood by Kryoan, Transparent Blood and HD Blood.

A question of cheekbones...
The cheekbones are one of the most difficult features to alter with a partial prosthetic. The edges of the application are especially difficult to hide in such a mobile and exposed area of the face. We proceeded as follows.

Prosthetic Preparation:
Luckily Angela had a full cast of her head that I could use to sculpt the new cheekbones with sulfur free Chavant clay of medium consistency. I heated up the clay in the microwave for a few seconds to render it more pliable before sculpting the application on the cast. Once done I carefully detached the clay and I laid it on a tablet where I reconstructed the edges and blended them further. I used some tongue depressors to build sides to the tablet and sprayed the positives with Kryolan Mold Release Spray, then I poured silicone molding material and waited for it to set. Once the silicone mold was ready i washed and dried it to get rid of any residue, then sprayed it again with Mold Release, and once this was dry I spread a thin layer of Glatzan. This bald cap plastic material is Kryolan's own alternative to Baldiez, and it is useful for encapsulating the prosthetic creating a thinner edge that will be easier to melt on the face using acetone.
Airbrushed Makeup with Nebula by Kryolan
Foam Gel: in order to create our prosthetic applications we used Kryolan Gel Foam, a foam gelatin that comes in blocks that are ready to be cut up and melted. I but half a block in a small see through plastic bowl, then I heated it up in 15 seconds increments in the microwave oven. It is crucial to do this carefully and to stop after each increment to check the status of the gelatin. As soon as it starts to raise you have to remove it from the oven and pour it in the mold, using a spatula to level it and remove the excess. The melting and cooling process is very fast, so you will have to work quickly, and you'll have to make sure that the gelatin doesn't reach boiling point or it will be unusable. After pouring it will take 45 minutes or less for it to be completely cured. Once dry I applied another thin layer of Glatzan (see above) and then waited for another hour for this to be ready. A light dusting with clear powder will help to keep the edges from folding over themselves and sticking together.

Prosthetic Application: first of all I applied Pro Shield Foam primer to Angela's face in order to protect her skin from all that was to follow. Then I spread a thin layer of Kryolan Special Adhesive B (equivalent to the famous Pros Aide glue) on the area of the face that was going to be covered, and I applied a thin layer on the back of the prosthetics as well. I waited until the glue became clear and then I applied the cheekbones. After the application I melted the edges away using a q tips and acetone, which worked well on Glatzan. In some spots a little more Special Adhesive B was necessary to further fill remaining discrepancies. After a light dusting with clear powder I proceeded to airbrushing the base coat of the makeup.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Camera Ready Cosmetics Airbrush Foundation: Review and Video Tutorial

100% Unretouched CRC Airbrush Foundation
Camera Ready Cosmetics is in our honest and unsponsored opinion one of the best pro makeup stores in the world. Originally founded in California by makeup artist Mary Erickson, the operation recently moved its base to Dallas, Texas, where it has expanded its product catalogue significantly and from where its success has continued to grow. Crc's secret is a very simple, time tested yet too often forgotten formula: they offer only the best brands at the best prices with the very best customer service imaginable. On top of that CRC offers very convenient worldwide shipping for most of its products, which is a vital feature often missing from other online distributors. 
Camera Ready isn't just a distributor of other brands, however, but has developed a very interesting line of products that it distributes under its own name. The philosophy behind CRC's own line is very simple, and reflects the generous, no bull attitude of its very founder: to provide new and established professionals with tools and products that perform effectively while remaining free of the costly burden of mainstream marketing

100% Unretouched CRC Airbrush Foundation
CRC Airbrush Foundation is one of the most prominent products resulting from this commercial strategy. Many perspective buyers may be hesitant to try out a product that has not been as widely advertised as an equivalent from better known brands, so we decided to put it to the test hoping that what we found out may help you decide whether to try this or not.
The line consists of ten water based shades of foundation presented in a generous, no frills 1 fl. oz (30ml) size and sold at a very convenient price. Most importantly, big sample sizes of 1/4 oz (7.5 ml) can be purchased for each color for just 3.99 dollars.  While the range is not very extensive, the shades included in it have a very neutral slant which will allow them to match most complexions from any ethnicity, and of course as with any airbrush formula the colors can be mixed together to refine the tonality to perfection. 

100% Unretouched CRC Airbrush Foundation
The enclosed photo of the airbrushed swatches, shot in natural sunlight, will give you a better idea of the undertone for each shade. Foundation N.10 is the fairest beige hue, while N.15 will match the lightest yellow undertone. The colors that follow are more neutral with a slight leaning towards either group. The foundation's formula has a medium viscosity which allows the colors to be used with practically any airbrush. For our tests and our video tutorial we used Kett's .40 airbrush, which has a slightly wider nozzle, but in other tests with any 3.5 nozzle we did not experience any clogging whatsoever, and cleaning the airbrush was a breeze with our Nurturing Force universal cleaner. The products provides very good coverage and good resistance to transfer and water. Tears will not cause the base to streak, and the finish will not be altered if allowed to simply air dry after exposure to moisture. Finally, the foundations have a very light, pleasant scent that is barely perceptible and will not linger after application. 

We decided to put the products to the test in a video tutorial where we used 5 shades of CRC Airbrush Foundations to accomplish a whole look. The goal of the video was to show how natural and versatile these products could be, and we believe the result and the unretouched photos we included here speak for themselves (pls click on each photo for full screen mode).
Whether you are a consummate makeup artist, a beginner or a personal user, CRC Foundations and their samples represent a fantastic opportunity to own a whole airbrush makeup foundation range at the most reasonable price imaginable. 

Camera Ready Cosmetics Airbrush Foundation Swatches

CRC Airbrush Foundation Ingredients:
Aqua (Water), Propylene Glycol, Acrylates/ Octylacrylamide Copolymer, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Triethanolamine, Tocopherol, Xanthan Gum, Phenoxyethanol, Disodium EDTA, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Butyparaben, Ethylparaben, Isobutylparaben. +/- May Contain: Mica,
CI 77891 (Titanium Dioxide), CI 77491 CI 77491 CI 77492 CI 77499 (Iron Oxides), CI 77007 (Ultramarines), CI 77288 (Chromium Oxide Greens).

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Aibrush Makeup Guru Porfiles: Interview with Jackie Fan from Temptu

It is a lovely late April afternoon in Los Angeles, and we are about to meet with Temptu's Global Education & Artistry Manager Jackie Fan, just a few days before her move to the East Coast where she will join the Temptu Team at its New York head quarters. Soft spoken and beautiful, Jackie has agreed to share some thoughts on airbrushing and on Temptu's remarkable, newly released range of innovative products.. 
Born in Tai Pei, Taiwan, Jackie moved to California at the age of 16. She moved LA a few years later to study at FIDM (Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising)  makeup school and has been living there until her move to New York. 

Jackie Fan at Temptu
How did you become involved in makeup? What was your first inspiration?
I have always been interested in design, art and beauty. Ever since I was little I loved to draw, so I started out as a sketching artist I guess. Then I went to beauty school and that's what I am most passionate about. The power to transform and improve someone's self esteem. Just a few subtle changes can change someone's day for the better, and that in turn makes my day.

Was anybody in your family involved in beauty or art?
My father was a banker, my mother was the artistic one in the family. She taught art in kindergarten, so I guess I took after her. My brother is a very successful entrepreneur, so I guess I am the only one in this industry which I love. You can't stay in this industry if you are not passionate about what you do. Initially there was a bit of resistance because I wanted to be a painter, and they didn't see that as a very profitable career, but then when I turned 10 they decided to let me do what I was passionate about and became really supportive.

When did you start airbrushing?
Jackie Fan and Temptu Airpod
It was in 2009. I was first introduced to the Temptu Airpod line, and I was really fascinated by how easy it is to apply and use. Then I got to mix colors with the SB line, and with my background in color theory I just loved the endless possibilities.

What was the first impression you had about airbrushing as a technique?
I was actually thinking of Photoshop, because I knew how to airbrush a photo on the computer, and then I saw an actual airbrush being used by another artist on a Job and I was blown away. First of all I love how hygienic it is. No contamination, no contact, no germs.Then I love the finish, and how it reads on hi def screens. It looks wonderful. So I thought I have to try this!

Makeup by Jackie Fan with Temptu
How hard was the journey that brought you to playing a prominent role with such an important leading brand as Temptu?
It was a lot of hard work. When I talk to younger generations of makeup artists they think of this job as very glamorous, but actually it's not. It's a lot of hard work -physical hard work- and also creatively you have to produce a lot of new ideas. I always try  to reinvent myself, to keep up and stay current and relevant. Doing what I do here at Temptu is important but I also want to keep freelancing on the side, that's what keeps me current and relevant. I have been with Temptu for a while, I love what they do and their art direction, and they have the same idea to keep evolving and reinventing themselves, which I find very humbling.

Thinking back of when you started with airbrushing, what is the aspect of the technique that you found more difficult to learn?
When I was starting observing the skin was the most difficult thing. We're used to seeing where the product is going [when we apply traditional makeup], but with airbrush it's harder to do that so I had to remind myself to look for the change in the skin. Also control and maintenance of the equipment, which can be the most intimidating part. Once you have these things down, in my opinion airbrushing is so much easier than traditional makeup. 

Makeup by Jackie Fan with Temptu
You've been teaching airbrushing to many makeup artists. What aspect of teaching to you enjoy the most, and which is your least favorite?
I love meeting new artists, we learn from each other. That's the best aspect. My least favorite aspect has to do with the fact that English is not my first language, so I tend to dwell in my mind a little bit and worry that my pronunciation or grammar isn't perfect, but I overlook that part easily.

Now for a question we ask all the gurus we interview: what do you think is the most common misconception regarding airbrush makeup? 
I think some people associate airbrush with "cakey" and fake looking finish. That's not true at all, because airbrush is a fine mist of makeup that is gently layered upon the skin, so the artists has total control of what the final result might be. It's really about the formula, and I can't speak for other companies but Temptu has this really amazing finish, and since you can mix colors it will work for any skin tone or skin type.

I find that when it comes to silicone based formulas a lot of artists are very intimidated by eyeshadow application. I think that if you set it properly SB can work beautifully for eyes, but a lot of people are still scared and run back to their brushes...
You're absolutely right. I do encounter a lot of artists that use airbrushing just for the base, but when I am teaching I always demonstrate a full airbrushed makeup, including eyes, so that they know it's a possibility. Once I was on a job with a makeup artist who was having problems blending a certain powder eyeshadow, so I helped her out by airbrushing on top of that to achieve a perfect finish!

Makeup by Jackie Fan using Temptu

Temptu has a very wide range of tool and products that can be used with or without an airbrush. You have an amazing FX range and and alcohol based line for tattoo covering for example. What is the line of products that you are most excited about apart from the SB line?
I'm so glad you asked that question! We are just about to launch the Airpod Pro. It's basically a top feed gun in pod form, so you don't have to deep clean it but you can just flush it with cleaner. It's reusable and you can mix any color together from any of our formulas or any other brand. It will fit with any airpod attachment, whether it be the traditional airpod gun or the new Temptu Air. There is also a new foundation line called HydraLock Foundation, it has 18 shades and it has a beautiful demi matte finish for a more luxurious user experience. [The Airpod Pro and HydraLock are now available through the Temptu US Website and its distributors in Europe]

Makeup by Jackie Fan using Temptu
Talking about other Temptu lines, is there a product that is a little underrated, or one that you feel people should know a little more about?
We do have a great Adjusters set.
You can actually mix a foundation color simply by mixing the primary colors that come with the this set, but a lot of people find it a little intimidating. I personally love it. 
I even mix adjusters with concealers to subtly change a tone and correct different tones. I love that set, even though it may not seem as exciting as the blush and highlighter set, but the creative opportunities are amazing.

If you could start over is there anything you would do differently?
I wouldn't really change anything because everything that happened has brought me this far and I really like where I am, but for anybody starting out I would encourage to go outside of their comfort zone, for example to not be shy about reaching out to people they want to work with, or agencies that they admire to try and get on their roster by assisting people, or even to pursue their dreams in a more determined way.

Do you have a professional dream you have yet to achieve?
When I was little I wanted to be a farmer, lol. Eventually I would like to do even more creative projects, but so far I pretty much feel like I am living my dream...

Find Jackie on Instagram @chiachingfan

Thursday, July 28, 2016

How to achieve an INDESTRUCTIBLE bridal makeup with Nebula by Kryolan- With kit review and video tutorial

Bridal makeup is the daily bread of most makeup artists. Brides to be of any ethnicity and tradition tend to agree on three key factors when discussing their makeup: durability, coverage and perfect finish. Airbrush makeup is the perfect answer to these expectations, and it adds speed, hygene and high HD performance to boot. The new Nebula line by Kryolan features a wide range of colors designed to perform well for any makeup goal, from invisible coverage to body painting, however because of their finish and their resistance we found it ideal for bridal makeup, and we produced the enclosed video tutorial to demonstrate just that.

Airbrush Makeup with Nebula by Kryolan
The Nebula formula is silicone based, which makes the product comfortable, allows great coverage and makes it water proof. Unlike many airbrushable silicone based products however, Nebula has a very low viscosity and a very short drying time which is comparable to that of water based products. The final finish is also very light, luminous but not shiny and very effective in its coverage. In other words, it is exactly what brides are looking for. 
We already discussed our first impression of this product last week. After experimenting some more with these colors I can confirm that they do have a learning curve, and that the results you get will improve more and more as you practice applying them. Of course they were conceived for airbrush application, and I hope that this will inspire more and more artists to learn this incredible technique, forgetting all the fears and false myth that still surround it, and that were spread mostly by those who don't really know how to use it. For those of you who are in fact considering adding this skill to their abilities, I will now review Kryolan's own airbrush kit. Please keep in mind however that Nebula will work on any professional airbrush kit regardless of the brand.

The Kryolan Airbrush Kit
Bridal look with Nebula by Kryolan
Kryolan chose a great maker for the kits it distributes. These are made in fact by the Taiwanese historical Sparmax brand, which also provides tools for most of the best airbrush brands in the world. The compressor chosen by Kryolan is the very reliable DAC 25, a true work horse among portable units. This little jewel is very quiet, very light and compact and quite powerful with an air stream output of 30 PSI. The version manufactured for Kryolan has an appealing silver-gray finish that makes it also very attractive to look at. The compressor comes with a rechargeable battery pack, and can be carried on the shoulder or attached to your belt thanks to a very practical and slick bag. The carrier bag feature an exra compartment for an additional optional battery pack which will give you twice the amount of time without having to plug in the unit. A single battery pack in any case will be enough to complete a whole beauty makeup and more. The airbrush included with the version of the kit that I purchased is another work horse in the airbrush makeup world, that is the Sparmax SP35 with its solid reliability and high quality, easy to replace components. With the launch of the Nebula line Kryolan started distributing an additional airbrush with a slightly bigger nozzle (0.4mm) in order to allow for the optimal flow of shimmery pigments. This is good but not strictly necessary, as the product will work well on smaller nozzles too. For our video shoot I have replaced the valve on my airbrush with a continuous airflow valve (often called "single action"), and I added a pressure regulator which at this time does not come with the standard kit. Doing this will make application on smaller, more delicate areas such as the eyes much easier, and will allow you greater control of the product, however these tweaks are not indispensable.

Kryolan Airbrush Kit and Nebula Products

Bridal airbrush makeup:Kryolan Nebula
Additional Nebula products
To make the cleaning process easier, Kryolan has created a specific Nebula Airbrush Cleaner. This is truly an excellent product that will allow you to clean and flush out your airbrush very easily and very fast, even if you use it in between colors. Cleaning at color changes in any case will only be necessary if you are switching to a much lighter shade or between very pigmented colors. In my not exactly limited experience I can attest that thanks to this cleaner Nebula is the silicone based product that is easiest to clean, bar none. Another effective product is the Nebula Remover, the makeup removing solution created specifically for this makeup. The very resistant Nebula colors can be removed also with any good silicone based makeup remover, but none will be faster and gentler than this.

Backstage secrets of our video shoot
The makeup shown in our video tutorial was made entirely by airbrush, except for eyeliner, mascara and lipstick. No brushes, HD powder or fixing sprays were used. The skin was prepped with silicon based Kryolan primers. The cuts in the filming are purely for timing, we have not touched up the makeup "off camera" in any way. Our model survived the water test and went on to wear the makeup for the rest of the day. She confirmed it held perfectly until it was removed.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Nebula by Kryolan: First Impression Review of the new Airbrush Makeup line!

Introducing Nebula by Kryolan: 54 shades for a natural yet super resistant makeup.

Kryolan is a legendary professional makeup brand. Since its beginning in Berlin, Germany in 1945, this company has been proudly run by its original founding family, and many of its products have become standards in the theatrical, fashion and film industry.  Airbrush makeup could not be missing from an extensive catalogue such as Kryolan's, and for several years the brand has been distributing three acclaimed product lines: Micro Foundation On Air (silicone based) Air Stream (water based) and Aqua Proof (alcohol based for body painting). In the last year however Kryolan has taken a further step in the airbrush makeup direction with a sizeable investment in the creation and the promotion of Nebula, a new line of innovative colors with a high pay off that was conceived primarily for beauty application. We couldn't wait to try these products and we are now ready to share our first impressions. Please come back to these pages next week for a full review and video tutorial of Kryolan's airbrush kit and Nebula line.

Nebula is a silicone based line that features 54 colors divided in 6 shade groups: Complexion 1 and 2 for foundation, Eyebrow, Irridescent 1 and 2 for eyeshadow and blush, Chromatic for opalescent eyeshadow and  finally Vivid, which includes six primary colors for any other use. 
Just like any other product in the Kryolan brand, Nebula has its own individual color chart, and its shades are not matching any other product directly. Nonetheless, the line itself is quite extensive, and offers endless mixing possibilities. The colors are sold in kits of 6 shades for each group, however you can also purchase them individually and build your kit more gradually.

The packaging of the products is one of the most attractive and luxurious I have seen for any airbrush makeup products. The color kits are presented in very elegant blue boxes with a magnetic lid, and featuring a slick brochure inside with tips on airbrush maintenance. The dispenser on the bottles opens with a half a turn anti clockwise, and the caps are relatively easy to keep clean. Any spill can be wiped quickly with alcohol 99, which won't affect the high quality printed labels.
The product's formula is silicone and acrylates based. That said, the makeup viscosity is very low, so much so that it can be used with the same low pressure you would apply to a water based product (5 PSI). With the launch of the Nebula range Kryolan has made a special airbrush available with a 0,4 mm nozzle, so that the shimmer pigments could be dispensed without difficulty, however you will be able to use this product even with smaller nozzles, as we did for the swatches below that were applied with a .25 airbrush.

The most remarkable characteristics of the Nebula line become evident when you apply the product: the colors are beautiful, can be layered to a high coverage and are super resistant: after a drying time that can vary to up to one minute, they become virtually indestructible, totally water proof and with zero transfer. As far as the colors are concerned, you can judge for yourself from the airbrushed swatches below: the photo was taken in natural light (please click on it to view it in full screen mode)

We can't wait to demonstrate a full beauty look made entirely with Nebula, which undoubtedly represents an interesting new option on the market. 

Application: Apply the color in light passes, waiting a few seconds for each pass to dry. Lightness is a fundamental rule here as with most airbrushable products, especially when you are applying to delicate areas such as the eyelid, where you must avoid excessive layering that would result in shorter durability or cracking. 
Cleaning: You will not need to clean the airbrush when you change colors, simply discharge the previous color and test the following on a piece of paper to avoid mixed color output. At the end of the job you will have to use a silicone based cleaner or alcohol 99% followed by distilled water. Kryolan has created a very effective, alcohol based cleaner called Nebula Remover.
Availability: Nebula is available on Kryolan's website, through Kryolan's own stores or its many distributors. 
Polytrimethylsiloxymethacrylate Copolymer, Polymethylsilsesquioxane, Silica Dimethyl Silylate and may contain: [+/- Titanium Dioxide CI 77891, Iron Oxides CI 77491, Ferric Ferrocyanide CI 77510, Carmine CI 75470, Mica] May contain carmine as a color additive