One of the great shames of my life is that I am absolutely positively CLUELESS about makeup – I kind of tend to buy the same stuff and wear it over and over again, until somebody politely informs me that I do, indeed, look horrible.
I always want to try to look better and and am always tempted to try to buy whatever the makeup artists at Nordstrom are trying to hawk me – but then I get paranoid that they are just trying to sell some useless product or that it’ll break me out – so I always end up with nothing. That’s why I am so excited for this week’s interview with my lovely friend and makeup guru, Christine Nguyen. Christine is an incredible artist and has done makeup and hair for everything ranging from Beyonce music videos to French Vogue editorial shoots. She’s worked for years with makeup superstars like Scott Barnes, and was kind enough to answer all of my beauty related questions. I’ve included some of my favorite photos of Christine and her adorable dog, Fab, throughout as well:
The beautiful (and lovably goofy) Christine
Who are you ? What do you do, and where do you live?
I’m a total dork, but my name is Christine Nguyen and glamour is my occupation. I’ve been doing makeup for over 11 years professionally in Los Angeles, working on everything from music videos, print, TV, commericals, celebs and non celebs!
I am so excited that you are doing this interview because I am an idiot, big idiot about makeup. What are the essential makeup items to use, in your opinion?
Well it depends on who I’m working on, but I think every girl needs these key items in their makeup bag:
My collage of Christine’s recommendations 🙂
Blush: Glow On blush by Shu Uemura, Tarte (Amazonian clay powder blush) & Stila convertible colors are my favorites.
Powder: Translucent powder by Pola in Sheer Rachel aka #E22, Laura Mercier powder foundation & Tarte Provocateur powder are staples in my kit.
Mascara: Nars makes two great ones. One is a volumizing formula & the other is lengthening. You can use one, or layer both for mega lashes. They are great too because they don’t weigh down your lashes.
Concealer: Corrector palette by Colorescience. There are 5 colors in the kit, but I mainly use the peach one under the eyes to brighten the area. Sometimes i mix it w/one of the yellows too if I’ve been sleep deprived. The darker tones are great to mix with the yellow and peach too to cover up blemishes & scars.
Lip color: YSL makes some pretty delicious ones. from the new Sheer Candy line, to the Rouge Volupte. I love that they make beautiful matte colors!
Eyelash curler: Kevyn Aucion makes my favorite one. It lasts so much longer the other ones and never pinches.
Christine’s adorable dog, Fab
Another gratuitous dog pic…I love dogs!
Sometimes I think I do an OK job on my makeup, and then in photographs I discover I look like a goblin. Do you have any tips for looking good in photos?
I highly doubt that you could actually make yourself look like a goblin! Maybe more like a like panda bear? Or a koala? You know, something more fuzzy and warm blooded.
1. What people don’t seem realize about photography is that your features will disappear in pictures if you don’t enhance them – so don’t be afraid to use a bit more eyeliner and mascara. Fill in your brows a bit if you don’t have a full brow.
2. Use a foundation or a powder foundation for a bit more coverage than usual. I always match the foundation to the neck or upper torso..by doing this you avoid having that awful white ghost faced look in pictures. Just say NO to Casper!
3. Also, contour is your best friend. It’s a bit more advanced for the novice but it makes a HUGE difference in pictures. If done right you can lose pounds off of your face, have a slimmer, higher, cuter nose, and pop those cheek bones you thought you never had!
What are your makeup pet peeves? Bad habits that keep you up at night? What looks good on almost nobody??
Christine tells you…Just say NO!
Hmm pet peeves. I hate tarantula lashes! There is nothing cute or sexy about gooped on mascara that looks crusty & nasty. Lashes should be fluttery & pretty, not like they’re harvesting disease!
Another pet peeve is bad brows. Too thin, too arched, too dark, too solid, beaten to death brows! Oh ladies, this always makes me cringe. This is the stuff that haunts me all the time. please don’t tweeze/wax/trim them to death. Let them grow! Super thin brows make you look older and it looks unnatural. It also kills me when girls fill in their brow super solid and too dark. It looks like they laid a stencil over their face & took a krylon paint can to it.
Nobody looks good with a bad fake tan. I’m sick of girls looking like carrots. it’s even worse when they add a shimmery bronzer to it, then you get what looks like a glittery carrot! St. Tropez makes one of the best natural looking fake tanners out there. If you have to tan, do it right please.
What is essential if you want to take good care of your skin?
Christine’s skin care recommendations
You mean aside from sleep and water?
I am in love with the Josie Maran Argan oil. For work, I use it either as a moisturizer or add it into foundation. For myself I use it morning and night as a moisturizer. It makes your skin so supple, adds a nice glow and doesn’t clog pores!
Fresh makes such great skincare. After all you need the right canvas for makeup, don’t you? I love, love, love the Sugar Lip Balms! It comes 4 different colors: Clear, Rose, Plum & Honey. There is one for every girl! they leave your lips just buttery soft without feelings waxy or greasy. I would die without this! I also love their Soy Face Cleanser, it’s gentle but will take off most of your makeup. The Sugar Face Polish is also great, and smells delicious! When my skin is feeling really parched I use their Black Tea Age Delay cream along with the Creme Ancienne Eye Cream. I could go on and on about Fresh, I (heart) them that much!
I am also hooked on my Clairsonic. I use it with the Soy Face Cleanser from Fresh or a cleanser from Eucerin. It gets all the dirt and makeup out of your pores after a long day! My skin feels so clean after I use it. I don’t know how I survived without one before.
A preview for tomorrow
Okay all – I hope you all enjoyed Part 1 of meeting Christine! I learned so much from her and tomorrow she tackles some of my favorite topics – including drugstore vs. department store makeup, and her favorite products ever. She also shares some more of her personal life – including her love of costumes (isn’t her Wendy freaking amazing?) Also, check out Christine’s website here!