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Paula Alleyne

learn how to do makeup by practicing on another person

3 Ways to Learn How to Do Makeup if You Have No Experience

By Education, Makeup Tips and Tricks, Student Ambassador No Comments

Want to learn how to do makeup but don’t have any prior experience? Paula Alleyne is here to help! A QC Makeup Academy Student Ambassador, Paula is also a graduate of QC’s Master Makeup Artistry Course. Her professional makeup business, PAULA MONIQUE, specializes in bridal, editorial, and special occasions makeup. Connect with Paula in the QC Virtual Classroom on Facebook! 

Why NOW Is the Perfect Time to Follow Your Dreams

How can we maximize our time during the pandemic? The onset of COVID-19 has caused many of us to rethink the way we conduct our lives, both personally and professionally. During this time, as makeup artists, it forces us to reflect on how we do business, how we interact with clients, how we protect ourselves, and the costs associated with doing business in the new normal.

I therefore encourage everyone to take this time to be reflective and improve for the better. Maybe you can use this opportunity to better your existing business. Perhaps you can maximize this time to learn how to do makeup. The important thing is that you use your time productively, so that you can continue pushing yourself forward.

In case you need some ideas, here a few ways you can make the best of a bad situation…

Hygiene and health care are of utmost importance.

If you’re an aspiring or established MUA with some experience under your belt, think of the practices that you had prior to the pandemic. Consider the ways in which you handled and sanitized your products and tools. Ask yourself: is there room for you to be doing better and keeping things cleaner?

Take this time to undo any bad practices you may have had before. Instead, dedicate yourself now to becoming a makeup artist with improved hygiene standards. By being as sanitized as possible at all times, your clients will feel (and be) safer.

Embrace online learning.

Prior to COVID-19, there was a pretty heavy debate regarding whether online making courses were just as beneficial as brick-and-mortar makeup schools. But since the pandemic started, everyone and everything has now moved to the online platform.

I have seen such an increase of makeup courses being offered virtually. Not only does it provide a way to continue learning in the comfort and safety of your own home, it’s proven to be just as effective as its in-person counterpart.

It’s important to understand, though, that online learning requires serious discipline. If you enroll in an online course assuming it’ll be easy, you’ll be in for a major awakening. We all have hectic lives, which is why many online makeup courses are self-paced. But with this freedom comes a certain level of responsibility on our end. Discipline is therefore required to ensure that you learn, complete assignments, and keep progressing.

Take advantage of “free” time.

Some of us may still be on lockdown. For those of us who aren’t, there are still major social distancing rules in effect. As such, a bunch of activities that required physical attendance are now rescheduled or cancelled.

This means that that extra time might suddenly turn into open availability within your schedule. Still, try to use it productively (at least once in a while)! Develop a new makeup technique, or strengthen areas where you may be weak. This is time that can also be used to review your business plans, finances, and budget for the future.

Time waits for no one. Every effort you can make counts!

3 Ways to Learn How to Do Makeup If You Have No Experience

1. Research it!

Look at blogs, read books or magazines, and watch videos. I realized I had an interest in makeup years ago, when I saw a makeup brochure from AVON. It had sketches of where to apply makeup products, such as blush, as well as ideas for eyeshadow application.

I asked my older sister questions about makeup. I looked at magazines and paid attention to how makeup was applied on models. Reading books like Face Forward by Kevyn Aucoin or Bobbi Brown’s Makeup Manual was also extremely eye-opening. I watched YouTube videos by makeup artists like Wayne Goss and Angie Di Battista, as well as videos on the history of makeup throughout various era and historical periods.

When it comes to makeup, there’s a whole world of information out there. A little research will go a VERY long way!

2. Practice it!

Practice on yourself and practice on others. After learning about makeup, I decided to start practicing it on myself. I attempted costume designs to go with the looks I was creating. I tried the smoky eye, red lips, nude lips – you name it!

I also began practicing on friends and family members. Applying your knowledge by working on other people’s faces is one of the single best ways to improve your skills and hone your craft. For me, these were times of trial and error. There were definitely mistakes made in the beginning – so, a big round of applause goes out to my sisters, my mother and my friends. They bore with me along the way, and put up with my technique when my hand was less than gentle.

The point is, eventually I got better! Even my sisters started to appreciate the torture of waiting in the chair while I finished. One big lesson I learned as I practiced was adjusting my facial expression. When working on clients, you need to know how to wear a good poker face. We’ve all had that experience when applying makeup; that internal freak-out when it seems like the look isn’t going as intended.

Over time, as I became familiar with different products and colors, I knew not to freak out. For the sake of your client, it’s important to always remain calm. Because at the end of the day, it is ALWAYS going to work out and be okay. It just might take a bit of patience.

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3. Learn it professionally!

Being self-taught is great, but being trained by a legitimate expert is even better. There are tons of industry pros and instructors out there who are happy to offer their knowledge on makeup artistry. Learning with them and discovering the theory behind makeup application is wonderful. It gives you the confidence to form your own type of artistry, rather than simply relying on the replication of other people’s looks.

Why I Chose to Be Professionally Trained

I chose to be professionally trained because I started to notice a trend on social media regarding an increasingly popular type of makeup application. Much of the application did not reflect the looks I saw in magazines – and these magazine editorials were what I began to fall in love with. I personally felt like I wanted to learn more.

One of the biggest lessons I chose to get professional makeup training was so I could learn about the business attitude behind the artistry. The art of makeup is important, but the need to conduct yourself as a professional is just as important. So, I enrolled with QC Makeup Academy!

If you’d like to learn more about my journey in starting an online makeup education with QC, you can read my other blog article here.

One of the biggest perks about being a QC Makeup Academy student is the community it’s developed over the years. In the Virtual Classroom on Facebook, for example, you get to meet other artists within the industry. It’s nice because these are fellow students and graduates who are on the same journey as you! It’s also a place where we encourage each other, offer constructive criticism, and ultimately help one another grow.

During the time of the COVID-19 pandemic, having this online community has helped many people to stay connected and motivated. Being a part of an educational institution encourages you to think about your business, maintaining high standards, and how you can continuously improve. It’s an all-win situation!

3 Must-Have Items in My Bridal Makeup Kit

By Makeup Careers, QC Student Ambassador No Comments

Paula Alleyne is back to reveal the top 3 items in her bridal makeup kit! A QC Makeup Academy Student Ambassador, Paula is also a graduate of QC’s Master Makeup Artistry Course. Her professional makeup business, PAULA MONIQUE, specializes in bridal, editorial, and special occasions makeup. Connect with Paula in the QC Virtual Classroom on Facebook! 

My Interest in Bridal Makeup

Bridal makeup artistry is a great way to serve, enhance a person’s life, and earn money. But it can also be a stressful time if you are not prepared, and do not have a calm demeanor. Despite these possible stresses, I love bridal makeup artistry. What better way to serve than to help a beaming bride look gorgeous for one of the most important days in her life?

makeup kit article, Paula Alleyne portfolio image 1
Makeup: Paula Alleyne. Photographer: Rommel Alleyne. Bridal designer: Jaye Applewhaite. Lighting assist: Akinwole Jordan. Model: Tiye Kelly. Venue: The Crane.

I entered into bridal makeup artistry because it was a natural progression from my style of natural beauty. My love for clean, classic looks augured well with bridal.

It was actually my tutor, Nathan Johnson, who unknowingly encouraged me to pursue bridal! In his feedback for one of my assignments, he indicated that I was certainly “doing bridal by now”. But at that time, I actually wasn’t. Nathan’s comments boosted my confidence to step out and enter bridal artistry… and I’m glad I did!

One of the major impacts that bridal artistry has had in my budding career is the wonderful networking opportunities gained. Whether I’m meeting bridal designers and models for collaborations, or meeting photographers at weddings – becoming familiar with professionals within the industry is always a great way to develop your business!

The Components of Bridal Makeup Artistry

When entering into bridal artistry, there are a few main components to consider:

  1. The initial contact;
  2. The consultation, or trial day;
  3. And application on the day of the wedding.

The Initial Contact

During the initial contact, it’s great to get an idea of the wedding date, as well as the time, style, and theme of the wedding. Keep in mind that at first, the bride may not always have all the details of their wedding sorted out yet. However, once she has indicated an interest to continue with you, understand that at that moment, you will be connected with her for months before the big day. You’ll be taking the journey with her!

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Makeup: Paula Alleyne. Photographer: Rommel Alleyne. Bridal designer: Jaye Applewhaite. Lighting assist: Akinwole Jordan. Model: Tiye Kelly. Venue: The Crane.

The Consultation

The consultation is the next major juncture. Here, you want to create the replica of what the bride would look like for her wedding. The consultation – also known as the ‘trial’ – is the time for the bride to freely express her ideas and concerns of makeup for that day.

Invite her to bring her ideas, along with photos of the dress, hairstyle, and jewelry. You should also discuss:

  • Any skin issues
  • Schedules for facials
  • The length of the ceremony and reception
  • Possible changes in attire during the wedding, etc.

Addressing these points will allow you to begin to gain a good sense of what the big day will look like!

While it’s ideal for the bride to have the hairstyle, dress, and attire known by the time of consultation, the reality is that some brides may still be undecided. What they are certain about, though, is what they want their makeup to look like for their special day. Use that one surety, and assist them in creating that perfect look.

The Day of the Wedding

When the big day finally arrives, it’ll be time for your makeup application. It’s vital that you remain calm. The bride may be in a state of nervousness. After all, things planned for that day may have gone off-track, and there is a lot of activity happening.

Arrive on time to setup your station. Confirm times for photography arrival and transportation departure. By this point, months will have passed between you and the bride; from the initial contact to this day. When facilitating the timely execution of your services, do not use a forceful approach. Instead, a natural, encouraging tone is the way to go!

makeup kit article, Paula Alleyne portfolio image 3
Makeup: Paula Alleyne. Photographer: Rommel Alleyne. Bridal designer: Jaye Applewhaite. Lighting assist: Akinwole Jordan. Model: Tiye Kelly. Venue: The Crane.

Learning Bridal Makeup in QC’s Master Makeup Artistry Course

I was excited to get to the bridal makeup unit in QC Makeup Academy’s Master Makeup Artistry Course. I knew that looks associated with bridal were ‘up my alley’, and I was looking forward to learning whatever I could.

Prior to taking the Master Makeup Artistry Course, I had no professional training in this specific area of makeup artistry. As a student, I was delighted to find that this program also offered extensive business training as part of its curriculum. I was given insight into bridal contracts and invoices. I was taught what my role with the bride would be, and the professional attitude I’d need to have to be successful.

The most valuable take-away for me was QC’s promotion of your soft skills as the makeup artist. Yes, your artistry has to be great to help the bride look beautiful. But what bride wants to be around an artist who makes them feel nervous, is disorganized, and feels burdensome on their big day?!

Bridal Makeup Kit

One of the questions I get asked is: “What are the must-haves for your bridal makeup kit?”

Well, there are several great brands of makeup products that can be used for a bride. Regardless of the brand I use, they must be broken down into 3 main categories within my makeup kit:

  1. Skin preparation
  2. Makeup application 
  3. Setting powder
bridal makeup kit

1 – Skin Preparation

Skin preparation is essential to facilitating smooth makeup application and creating the appearance of a flawless face. For this reason, one of the key ingredients in my makeup kit is moisturizer.

Once the face has been cleansed, you must ensure the bride’s skin is moisturized. This will help it to remain supple, and reduce the appearance of lines. It’s also just as critical to ensure the moisturizer used is appropriate to the bride’s skin type.

Sweat control is another key ingredient in my makeup kit. If it’s an outside wedding, the bride can get hot. In other cases, the anxiety of the day can cause her to sweat more than usual. This product helps to keep the sweat at bay. In the end, this assists the makeup’s longevity.

Primer is another must-have in my kit. Primers serve as a great base for the smooth application of foundation. Similar to moisturizers, primers should be appropriate to the bride’s skin type.

2 – Makeup Application

Once the skin has been prepped, the makeup application covers four (4) main areas:

  1. Eyes
  2. Face
  3. Cheeks
  4. Lips

The variety of colors for eyeshadows are endless! However, for bridal makeup, I have found that most brides want natural, cool shades that are elegant and not overpowering. My makeup kit must have eyeshadows that are highly pigmented, in colors similar to champagne, browns, bronze, and taupe. Colors which have a bit of shimmer are also great for adding highlights under the brow bone.

When it comes to the eyes, my makeup kit also includes a brow powder or brow pencil. I’ll make sure to stock up on varying shades of brown, so that I can create a natural shape and definition to the eyebrow. Waterproof mascara on this emotional day is also essential!

bridal makeup application

Next up is the face! We want our brides to have a flawless, even complexion. That means that you need a foundation that’s accurate to their skin color. My makeup kit must not only have a foundation palette that offers a variety of shades; it should also have a primary color palette as well.

My foundation palette cannot cover every single skin tone out there. Therefore, to be efficient on space and finances, my primary color palette allows me to make a foundation color that’s exactly to the bride’s complexion. This eliminates the need to spend unnecessary money on several different foundation palettes!

Another must-have for face makeup is cream blush. I am in love with cream blush! This product allows the face to have a flush of color that appears to radiate from the bride’s natural skin. Cream blush is buildable, and can subsequently be enhanced with powder blush.

3 – Setting Power

After creating that gorgeous, lovely face, you’ll want it to last as long as possible. The first step is setting the foundation with no-color powder. No-color powder is critical in my bridal makeup kit! After all, once you’ve applied that perfect foundation shade, you don’t want to mess it up by putting on a powder that changes the bride’s skin complexion at the last minute.

In addition to setting powder is setting spray. Setting spray not only gives the bride a great, fresh finish – it provides staying power to ensure the bride’s makeup application lasts even longer!

Did you know that when you enroll in QC’s Master Makeup Artistry Course, you’ll receive a FREE makeup kit to help you train? Add to your makeup kit and get started today!

makeup artistry professional putting makeup on model

Makeup Artistry Career Spotlight: A Day on Set as an Editorial MUA

By Graduate Feature, Makeup Careers No Comments

Paula Alleyne is QC Makeup Academy Student Ambassador, as well as a graduate of QC’s Master Makeup Artistry Course. Her professional makeup business, PAULA MONIQUE, specializes in bridal, editorial, and special occasions makeup. Connect with Paula on Instagram or in the QC Virtual Classroom on Facebook!

What is Editorial Makeup?

Editorial makeup is a type of makeup artistry that can be summed up as the work you would see in print. This can be for beauty campaigns, fashion magazines, etc. Typically, editorial makeup is either simple, clean beauty looks, or extravagant creations that are not typically used in every-day wear.

Working as an editorial makeup artist is a different environment from being hired to provide services for a special occasion, such as for a live wedding or a client’s special event. In editorial shoots, the makeup artist is but one of the many players behind the scenes. Everyone works together to prepare the talent for a determined image.

A makeup artistry career for an editorial MUA spans various areas. One can work work in stylized shoots, be featured in magazine spreads for beauty and/or avant-garde fashion, or work for a company in their advertisement campaigns.

close up of makeup artistry products

Why Editorial Makeup?

My love for natural beauty and clean, classic looks – which are often seen within beauty and fashion magazines, or in portraits of celebrities – drew me towards editorial makeup artistry. To me, there is an appeal in looking at an image, seeing the person highlighted, and not having the beauty of his or her face being overpowered by makeup.

However, when you take a closer look at the image, you also see all the tiny details that build up and make the final image what it is. For example, it may be a soft smoke of a bronze color that effortlessly ties back in with the bronze jewelry being advertised, or the attire being worn.

My husband, Rommel Alleyne, is a photographer. He and I have been working together on several shoots. Over time, we have learned each other’s styles in makeup artistry and photography, and I have learned how makeup application translates on camera.

There is no substitute for the experience gained working on photoshoots! Even when I am not the makeup artist, and work instead as the lighting assistant, I’m still learning. I’ve become more appreciative of the time of day, lighting, and talent positioning – which all play a vital role in the final image.

Working as a makeup artist for editorials also creates networking opportunities with photographers and models alike. One of my favorite editorial shoots was on set with a Barbadian photographer, Joel Brooks, and a Barbadian jazz singer, Kellie Cadogan. Prior to the shoot, we played around with different attire and jewelry, and concluded with two pieces we would with.

Time was limited. By the end of shooting the first look, the crunch was on for the second shooting. The makeup application for the first look was with neutral brown tones, which were transferrable to the second photo session. However, I knew that a slight smoke and hint of grey would add to the second piece.

So, I got permission to proceed with the color transition. I felt the time squeeze and needed to work extremely quickly. I did the transition, and looking at the final photos, I’m glad I made that intuitive suggestion. As you’ll see below, the end product was good!

makeup artistry career - paula alleyne editorial shoot image 1

Jazz Singer/Model: Kellie Cadagon. Makeup by Paula Alleyne. Photography by Joel Brooks. Lighting Assist: Rommel Alleyne

A Day on Set

In the world of editorial makeup artistry, working on set can be summed up into one word: “ATTITUDE”. The attitude you have can either make you or break you.

Always have a heart to serve! As the makeup artist, you are but one person within the team.

Time matters! Get to set early to prep your station and be ready for the talent.

Talk! Have an open dialogue with the team, especially with the photographer prior to shooting. As the shooting unfolds, speak with the photographer to ensure the desired look is being achieved.

Include the talent in your discussions. Let the talent inform you of his or her skin type, allergic reactions, and any prior negative experiences with makeup applications.

Understand the overall image to be achieved. Even if adjustments have to be made during the set, and your input is required, ensure that your suggestions are in keeping with the desired look.

Do be professional. Always!

Enjoy the process! Use the experience to meet other professionals, develop your strengths, and identify areas for improvement.

makeup artistry professional on set with model and photographer

The Benefits of Training with QC Makeup Academy

One of the main benefits of obtaining my professional makeup artistry certification with QC Makeup Academy is the mental preparation the school instills in its students. In one of my Business Units, QC spoke about the importance of networking. This can be in the in the form of:

  • Volunteering
  • Assisting
  • Interning
  • Job shadowing
  • And much more!

When starting out as a makeup artist, providing editorial work will often begin through volunteering. As within any profession, volunteering should never be frowned upon. In the right place, you’ll find that you’ll receive the same positive attitude, energy, and professionalism that would be given to any paid employee.

In addition to the mental preparation encouraged by QC, you’re also taught all of the practical skills needed to thrive as a professional makeup artist. For example, you’ll learn about accurate foundation application, skin and color correction, blending, and understanding the basics of skincare. All of these factors play a crucial role in creating flawless skin, as well as the natural beauty often associated with editorial makeup.

makeup artistry career - paula alleyne editorial shoot image 2
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Yoga Instructor/Model: Jo Hamilton. Makeup by Paula Alleyne. Photography by Rommel Alleyne. Lighting Assist: Akinwole Jordan.

I am currently enrolled within QC Makeup Academy’s updated Master Makeup Artistry Course, and am eager to see how they’ve improved upon an already great program. One of my goals is to have my work published within a well-established magazine. I’d also like to work with celebrities.

As you know, one of my most important stances is: “Never stop learning!” I’m looking forward to sharing my experiences in this program with you guys!

Much love,

Paula

Earn YOUR professional makeup artistry certification in as little as 3-6 months by enrolling today in QC Makeup Academy’s wide variety of internationally-leading courses!