Thursday, February 11, 2010


BCP is Brush Cleaning Program and has to be done every time you use your brushes to keep them in their best possible hygienic conditions. Hygiene is the most important aspect of a clean makeup and people will recognize you even with the hygienic practices of yours as a makeup artist. I love to be very organized when I do my makeups, whether it is at the counter or a photo shoot or anything per se. I always organize the shades that I am going to use, the brushes that I need and the consumables like cottons and tissues in a small area on the right hand side of my client (as I am a righty) so that there is not a speck of confusion in getting the look right.
But the most important part of the entire makeup session is the hygiene. Hygiene makes the makeup application safe and does not cause any cross contamination. This includes cleaning of brushes too and that's what we are going to discuss in today's post.
Brush cleaning is divided into two parts, On-the-spot cleaning and deep cleaning. This is done according to the convenience of the makeup artist but it's a must to incorporate this in your makeup routine. All this is to avoid infections caused by micro organisms that grow over the cosmetics clinging to the brushes or when we apply makeup to a lady who carries bacteria and pus and when the same brush is used on another lady without washing it. Cross contamination can lead the client into a serious trouble with really bad infections that can rise from this. It all starts from infected brushes and unhygienic conditions and all this can be kept on bay by using the right stuff.
So many bloggers and makeup artist have their videos on youtube and give directions on how to clean the brushes. But unfortunately most of the special brushes cleaning products that they use there are not found in India. That's why I am writing this post.


This is when you are very busy and shuffling your schedules and running around places to do makeups and have no time to really wash your brushes. Brushes are like babies and one has to really take care of them to make them last longer and better. Its not only about investing in good quality brushes but also in ways of taking brush care.
When you are so busy with no time for brush cleaning, the best way to clean the brushes is wipe them over Baby wipes. Baby wipes are alcohol free wipes that sanitize and keep the baby's bottom soft and fresh. If they could do that to something so delicate, why not use baby wipes for brushes. Yes, they come at a price but its worth. What you have to do is wipe your brushes over the wet tissues and keep them for drying for 5 min. since the baby wipes are alcohol free, they do not dry the bristles of the brushes or make them brittle. It is just the Triclosan which is antibacterial and sanitizes the brushes. Very good for natural hair brushes as they remain very soft and smell like a baby too.
MAC cosmetics sell their brush cleaner in India for Rs.550 and its good at times to clean your brushes with it. The isopropyl alcohol sanitizes the brushes killing 99.99 % bacteria and sometimes even spores. You have to take some brush cleaner over a tissue paper and wipe your brushes over it. Keep them for drying, flat on the table and they dry up in 5 min. I am not very much in favor of this because the alcohol that evaporates very fast dries of the brushes and makes them hard with brittle hair that break down very easily. This makes the brush lose its life and you wont feel like using the brush again.


Magazines always advice a mild shampoo or a baby shampoo to clean your brushes. What I do is since I clean my brushes every week I alternately use Sunsilk anti hair fall shampoo and The Body shop shower gel in my favorite flavor Wild cherry. Since both of these are not with very strong chemicals they are very gentle on the brushes. I also used my Clinique Happy hair and body wash for brushes but since it got over and I don't have another one, I stopped using that. I use the body wash as it not only softens the brushes but also imparts a fresh fruity smell that can sometimes mask or take off the hideous chemical processing smell that comes from the brushes at times.


Again taking a shampoo on the hand and washing every brush is very time consuming and wasting of the product. Plus I feel if you use a lot of shampoo per brush you might have some remnants of shampoo in the brush that does not wash off completely and soaps can smell really bad if they are retained for a long time. So I take a drop of shampoo in a small container. Fill it 1/8th with running water to make lather. Then divide my brushes according to face, cheeks, eyes and lips. And then wash every group separately in a fresh solution. You have to just rotate the brushes swiftly with the care that the water does not reach above the handle (a little is ok, not to worry if the handle gets wet) and then wash them under running tap water. After this I gentle wipe of the excess water on a towel and keep them on a flat dining table over a Turkish towel for drying. My brushes dry within 3-4 hrs naturally. Do not rub the brushes harshly over the towel as they might lose the shape that they are made up of. And their hair may go haywire. I dry them flat and not standing coz the gravitational pull on latter will make the brush lose its natural shape.
The larger the brush, more the time it takes to dry, so be patient.


  • Never use warm or hot water to clean brushes. It might expand and contract the metallic brush ferrule and the ferrule may loosen up from the handle.
  • Never shake the brushes vigorously after washing as they might shed a lot of hair and become wobbly over time.
  • The natural hair brushes are like human hair in texture and in components. So they retain moisture in the brush, so never leave the brush wet in your brush belt as it might alter the shape.
  • Always keep your brushes safe in a brush belt with a guard. This will make the brushes retain their regular shape.
  • Do not use very hard water for washing the brushes too as it might make the brush hairs brittle.

Try it out..

Till then,


5 ways to sport L.I.L.A.C

Lilac is getting a glamorous turn these days and Vogue magazine has declared Lilac as the color of the season. Goes so well with my thoughts as I thought in the same way Vogue did. Lilac has always been my color and wherever I can I liberally use Lilac on lips and on eyes. Infused with gold or silver or pink glitter, lilac is "the" color to sport from parties to natural looks.

Use translucent washes of Lilac for an innocent iridescent look that can be sported in the day while apply neon lilacs at night and set a trend. How versatile this color could be?

Btw Lilac is a light violet and not the same color that we see in the flower called Lilac. It beats Lavender in being bluer than the former which has more of violets and pinks in them. I like the lilac color in Periwinkle flowers which has again an eponymous color called periwinkle blue. So do not mistake lilacs to be a pink or a blue and sometimes the names kept by companies could be misleading like Luscious lilac lip gloss from Clinique which looks more on the side of a muted pink. I also don't like opaque lilac lipsticks that MAC has made as they can just look pasty and drain out the color of the face. You look as if you were poisoned or something. And one should never use a Lilac blush because I think no one makes it in the market because a lilac blush can make you look ill with cold. So please be careful while using lilac.


  1. Never use iridescent lilac eyeshadows as brow highlighters. They tend to look cheap and garish.
  2. Stay away from opaque lilacs except lilac eye liners. Alexander McQueen's collection had a fantastic Lilac paint pot base btw which was very good. But that all I liked.
  3. No lilac blushes or opaque whitish lilac lipsticks.


  1. Pair an iridescent lilac eyeshadow with an iridescent bright yellow eyeshadow and it's the ultimate wear for spring season. Give of wash of yellow eyeshadow (Luminizing Satin color eyeshadow from Shiseido) on the eye lids. Use a purple eyeshadow (MAC single eyeshadow in Fig1 or Clinique Color Surge soft shimmer eyeshadow in Black Orchid) on the outer corners and in the outer crease after tracing a matte purple eye liner (Clarins waterproof liner) near lash line. Apply a lovely lilac color (Clarins Vibrant Violet) in the crease and blend it towards the brow bone. Highlight with a shimmery neutral cream highlighter (Stila single eyeshadow in Kitten or MAC Nylon or Phloof!). Coat the lashes with a plum colored mascara like YSL Faux Cils mascara. Use a neutral golden beige shimmer on the cheeks (MAC iridescent powder in Belightful) and a nude lip gloss like Clinique Superbalm Moisturizing Lip gloss in Grapefruit.
  2. Keep the whole makeup neutral with a soft brown eyeshadow (Clarins Single eyeshadow in Blazing Brown) in the crease and a light taupe (Lancôme color focus eyeshadow in Platinum Brown) over the lids and brow bone. Coat the lashes with black mascara and line the upper lids with a black pencil liner. Dust frosted taupe golden shimmer on the cheeks (MAC powder blush in Honor or Christian Dior Amber diamond). On the lips apply a lilac shimmery lipstick (Clarins Joli Rouge) and then slick on some lip gloss like (Clinique superbalm moisturizing lipgloss)
  3. Trace a black pencil over the lid and blend with a smudge brush over the half of the lid area. Dust a shimmery lilac eyeshadow (MAC Parfait amour) over the liner for a duo toned effect. Line the eyes with MAC fluidline in Blitz & Glitz. And apply volumizing mascara (Max Factor False Lash effect mascara). Use a soft iridescent pink blush like MAC Gentle and a soft lilac lipgloss like Clinique Superbalm in Lilac.
  4. Draw bold lilac line over the upper lash line using a pencil eyeliner like the one from Revlon's matte collection or go with a duo chrome lilac pencil using Bourjois Duo chrome eye pencils to add a pop to your makeup.
  5. Use a combination of lilac on the lids, orange in the crease, burgundy in the outer corners and attach some false lashes for drama. Pair with a bright orange blush and bright orange lipstick and see the contrasts. It's a dramatic look but can be toned down as needed.

Celebrate the lilac color and add this fun color to your makeup wardrobe.

Till then,


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The Indian Lotus Blossom

I always wanted to renovate the lotus blossom look for Indian yellow undertones as the ideal look would make most of Indian ladies go grey and garish unlike the beautiful Chinese ladies. The lotus blossom look is about cool pinks and lavenders over the eyes, cheek and lips and it gives the beautiful glow from within. Putting in some greens makes this look good on our yellow undertones as green helps glamorize the look…

Let us see what we need for this look…….

  1. Oriflame Urban shield foundation SPF 15
  2. For darker complexions Max Factor Second skin foundation in Caramel
  3. Shiseido Luminizing Powder trio
  4. Christian Dior Hydrating concealer in appropriate colors
  5. Max Factor false lash effect mascara
  6. MAC single eyeshadows in Sushi flower (peachy pink satin color), Humid (frosted forest green), Ricepaper (muted yet frosted golden beige), Embark (reddened brown matte) and Gorgeous gold (duo chrome golden green)
  7. Clinique Kohl shaper for eyes in Black Kohl
  8. MAC beauty powder blush in Tippy from their limited hello kitty! Collection (limited edition)
  9. MAC grand duo mineralize blush in Love Rock
  10. Clinique High Impact lipstick SPF 15 in Toasted Rose
  11. Shiseido Lip gloss in G5 Rose pink


On a moisturized and primed face, apply foundation wherever necessary. The Oriflame Urban shield foundation has rhodocrisite that protect the skin from environmental damage and pollution and I love it for the texture. It feels like Estee lauder's double wear light makeup and is 5 times cheaper. Maybe this is the only Oriflame foundation I liked after their Giordani age defying foundation. Dot on the concealer and blend it to perfection. If the concealer looks heavy and cakey, mix it with an under eye gel to get a thinner consistency. Dust powder to set the makeup. The Shiseido Luminizing powder trio has three colors that highlight color and contour. I just mix all the three colors over my fluffy powder blush and dust it over the skin.


Prime the eyes with an eye primer like Clarins Instant Light eye primer to enhance the stay and power of the eyeshadows. For people on tighter budgets use Oriflame Face primer which is safe for use in the eye area. Line the upper lids with a black kohl pencil and smudge the kohl into lids to eliminate harsh lines. Start by contouring eyes with MAC Embark in the outer corners of upper and lower lids and in the outer side of the crease. Continue the crease by blending MAC humid blending it towards the brow bone. This not only enhances the shape but also looks like a lotus leaf. Now dust Sushi flower over the entire lid and apply shadows in layers for intensity. I also like to apply Sushi flower wet so that it intensifies the look. Dust Ricepaper eyeshadow over the brow bone and comb the brows to define them. No need of using a brow brush as the look demands a naturally brushed brows. On the lower lid blend in Humid in the middle third and Sushi flower in the inner third of the lid. Apply Gorgeous gold in the inner corners to open up the eyes.

Apply several coats of false lash effect mascara on the upper lids. Adding a green in this look makes it more modern and Indian at the same time.


Dust in a lovely bright pink blush over the cheek apples for a subtle wash of pink color. Dust some shimmery pink gold over the cheek apples to give subtle highlights and contour to the face.


Blend with fingers Toasted Rose lipstick on lips to push the pigment in the lips and keep the lipstick long lasting. Dab some G5 rosy gloss on the centre of the lip to get a pouted effect.

Pair this look with a bright candy color ribbon hair band to get the 70s look…….

Do try this out and let me know…..

Till then,


Look of February….

With the spring on its way and weather getting warmer (wonder how cold it was in Mumbai but still feels so) I feel I should do a look for February that is an array of colors neatly put together. Luckily my canon camera found its USB and I could take the picture of the products that can be used to do this look. I'll also give options of finding duplicates to certain Mac limited edition products as you wont find them in the store if you feel like doing this look. Now the only thing is looking for a model on whom I could do these looks and post it on the blog. Maybe one day that would happen too.

I called it as "February Fantasy" and let us see what we need to do this look.

Not in the picture: -
  1. MAC prep n prime face primer with SPF 50 PA++
  2. MAC Studio select concealer
  3. Bourjois Jet black eye pencil
  4. Clarins Instant Light eye primer

In the picture (writing the duplicates): -
  1. Max Factor second skin foundation
  2. Oriflame Urban Shield foundation
  3. Shiseido Luminizing Powder trio as per the choice of colors according to skin coloring.
  4. MAC Powder blushes in Tippy (Blue pink satin blush), Emote (Muted brown matte blush) and MAC Mineralize Grand Duo blush in Love Rocks (Golden pink/Lavender pink with gold veining) with duplicated Tippy = Coygirl
  5. Lancôme Color Focus eyeshadow in Bikini Green (Neon green with yellow shimmer) with duplicate of Bikini Green = MAC Bitter
  6. MAC mineralize eyeshadow in Fresh Green Mix
  7. MAC Single eyeshadows in Cool Heat (teal with multi colored pearl), Sushi Flower (Peachy pink satin duo chrome), Smut (brown with burgundy pearl), Dark Edge (neutral brown), Gorgeous Gold (yellow green duo chrome)
  8. MAC Lipsticks in Nouveau frou (light lavender sparkle), MAC Fafi limited edition , with duplicate Lipglass in Totally It
  9. Mac Dazzle Glass in She-zam
  10. Shiseido Lipgloss in G5 Chianti Rose


On a cleansed face, apply a face primer for a flawless finish with the foundation. Apply eye primer on the eyes so that the shadow stay put longer and do not crease. Apply a tiny dot of MAC studio select concealer in the under eye area and blend it to perfection. This look needs flawless under eye area as we are using blues that could make the under eye are look darker. Dot and blend a liquid foundation on the entire face and layer it till you achieve a flawless canvas. For this begin with Oriflame urban shield foundation over the entire face and then use Max Factor second skin foundation on the highlighting areas of the face to create three dimensional effects. Dust with a fluffy powder blush Luminizing Powder trio for a glowy finish to set the foundation and concealer.


For a healthy flush of color apply Tippy on the cheek bones blending diagonally upwards near the temples to create a mini face lift. Begin with less as you can build on later. Apply Emote which is neutral brown matte blush in the contour areas of the face that is in the hollow of the cheeks towards the sides of the forehead, sides of the nose (if needed) and in the perimeter of the face. With a fan brush dust golden pink shimmer from Love Rocks.


Trace a dark black eye pencil on the upper lid from outer to inner corners. With a dome shaped smudge brush, smudge it into the lash line to give an illusion of fuller lashes. Mix Smut and Dark Edge in the outer corners and the lash line and blend it into the crease in the half way of the lid. In the inner half of crease apply Sushi flower and blend it upwards towards the brow bone. Highlight the brow bone with Gorgeous gold, dusting it with a flat eyeshadow brush. On the entire upper lid apply a mixture of Fresh Green mix and Bikini Green to give the lids a neon yellow green halo using a eye shadow brush. In the inner corners apply more of gorgeous gold eyeshadow to open up the eyes. Over the lower lid, just near the water line trace a thin line of black eye pencil and smudge it. Over the black eye pencil on the entire length of the eye lid smoke out Cool heat eyeshadow. Apply several coats of False Lash Effect Mascara for gorgeous lashes. Comb the brows and set them with a brow gel.


Mix Nouveau Frou and MAC Fafi limited edition lipstick to get a duo toned light lip color. Blend with fingers on the lips. Try not using a lip liner and create a stain of the lipstick. This is to get a muted lip in contrast to strong eye makeup. Coat the lipstick with Chianti rose lip gloss and on the centre of the lips apply She-zam which is a silvery lipgloss with pink and lilac glitter.

Try out this look and let me know what you think about it…

Till then,



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