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Beauty Trends

We’re not all born with a sixth sense for shadows, creams and application methods, and even the best at-home wand-wielders find themselves at a cosmetics impasse every now and again. And sometimes, well, sometimes we just want a second opinion or a fresh set of eyes. Enter our Beauty Stylists. These skincare and makeup professionals are well-versed and experienced with all the lines we carry, and they have a client-focused, nuanced approach to helping you look and feel your best.

Case in point: Patricia Wolfkill, a 55-year-old former model and longtime fashion industry multitalent. Wolfkill visited Beauty Stylist Kristen Lawson at Nordstrom Bellevue Square and we were there to document what went down.

The goal: “I think as women age, the days of no makeup and/or too much makeup end,” Wolfkill told us. “I think the biggest concern for women of a certain age is to use a light hand, but in such a way as to create some of the facial contours that diminish with age. In addition to the issue of sagging or drooping skin, the texture of the skin changes. It’s key to use makeup products that help restore—or appear to restore—that healthy, hydrated, smooth skin of our youth. That’s the goal. At least that’s my goal.”

The stylist: Kristen Lawson, whose gorgeous bottle-blond locks and of-the-moment, partially shaved ‘do are a sort of calling card for her modern, fashion-forward approach to beauty and makeup.

The strategy: Lawson wanted to give Wolfkill a sophisticated, dewy look for evening. By creating this special-occasion glow Lawson could introduce our consultant and fashion-marketing instructor to a suite of products, and Wolfkill could edit or dial back the options and ideas for regular, everyday wear from there.

First steps: Lawson says she often asks her clients to bring in their personal makeup bag; this allows her to take a look at the customer’s existing collection and suggest not only updates and additions, but new ways of utilizing those current products as well. The focus here was on introducing Wolfkill to some new tricks and tools, however, so after Lawson and Wolfkill spent a little time gabbing about moisturizing, cleansing and general beauty routines, our pro went off in search of a few of her favorite things.

The essential prep: Clarisonic’s Opal just couldn’t come with a bigger and heartier endorsement. Lawson likes to see it used with Osmotics Eye Surgery. She gave Wolfkill a good workup with the tool, pointing out that this time of year—cold season, that is—the eye massager also works as a lymphatic drainage booster. “Oh yeah, this feels good,” said Wolfkill as the Opal hummed along.

The essential moisturizer: Perricone MD Face Finishing Moisturizer

The essential primer: Laura Mercier Radiance; “Glow without the sparkle, which just isn’t right for a woman like Patricia.”

The essential tool: A mirror. “I always give my clients a hand mirror so they can follow along,” Lawson said. “It’s pointless if they can’t go home and replicate the process.”

 

 

Creating the look: Again, it was all about the glow—and to this end Lawson had a great point: The dewy, glowing look always trends in summer because it’s relatively easy to achieve. An afternoon of gardening or farmers’ market shopping in the sunshine and you’ve got it. But in the cold months, we really want and need to mentally and physically combat the doldrums. It just takes a little more effort.

Foundational: YSL’s Youth Liberator and Touche Éclat with a NARS eyeshadow base—”The best in the world.”   

Pivotal: Chanel Soleil Tan. “Just a little,” Lawson warned. “You can’t be doing Kim K. everyday.” But for just-right contour, both Lawson and Wolkfill—already a card-carrying fan of the product—agree. This is it.

Colorful: From there Lawson’s routine included 12 more products and applications, including La Prairie Cream Blush, NARS Larger Than Life Eyeliner in a nude shade—get this, pro tip!—on the inner rim of the lower lid, Dolce & Gabbana Passioneyes Mascara and Estée Lauder’s Nude Lip Pencill—”The very best nude.” There were lots of pencils, pots and sticks on the desk when she was finished, but it’s all about exposure. Lawson wants her clients to see the wide and colorful range. And a price range, too. There’s certainly no expectation that all of the appointment’s elements will go home with each client, and she says she actually loves the process of talking them all through and deciding what’s right for now and what can be revisited later. What does always go home with the client is a face chart—a handmade map of what was used and where, annotated and fully cross-referenced.

The result? That, friends, you can see for yourselves.

 

To make a free, no-pressure appointment with a Beauty Stylist near you, or to consult with one by phone or Live Chat, visit our Beauty Stylist page.

Images by Brooklyn Benjestorf

October 7, 2014

Trending Now: Night Shades

Kate Fannin introduces our favorite beauty trend right now: night shades for eyes.

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The smoky eye gets dusky this season—grounded in cool, flinty shades of slate gray and metallic pewter. This trend can be smoldering and sultry for night (try our new “halo” technique below), or you can simply define your waterline for a modern approach for day. Shimmering cocoa adds yet another option that’s perfect for day or night.

Nails can accent this edgy yet feminine look with gunmetal, mica or black patent polish and accented with gold flecks for a shock of color.

Try this trend yourself with Charlotte Tilbury’s pro tips for creating a super-easy smoky eye.

Give your face a subtle pop of color this summer. Recently launched, these cheek and lip shades from Clinique add a bright little burst without going overboard.

Chubby Stick Moisturizing Lip Color Balm blooms on contact to highlight the natural tones and hues of your lips, giving you a little bit of color and a whole lot of hydration. The Cheek Pop blush is truly mistake-proof—you don’t even need a mirror! Just apply it with two fingertips and you’re good to go for a natural summer-flushed look. Great for your on-the-go makeup kit, these buildable, sheer colors are essential for a no-fuss touch-up.

See all of our favorite summer pops of color.

Kate Fannin, our beauty trend editor, is gearing up for the summer season with bright, brilliant color.

Nothing says summer like a Popsicle™ (remember when you and your friends would fight over who got the red one?) – which is why we’re so excited about all the Popsicle-bright shades for lips and nails this season. The best part is, anything goes! Pops of pink, magenta, fuchsia and cherry are always fun for lips. OR, try a new trend by layering colors—a bold pink gloss looks amazing over a fun orange lipstick to create your own custom color.

For nails, take a vacation from elaborate nail art and keep it simple but punchy with colors like watermelon, tangerine, lemon and cantaloupe – who knew your granny’s citrus Jell-O mold could inspire such a hot summer trend? If you’re feeling more than one color or can’t decide, try different hues on different fingers, or contrast your fingers with your toes. And don’t forget a great top coat – not only will extend the life of your mani/pedi, but high-shine is a must for a summer “wet look.” Just grab your swimsuit, slather on the sunscreen, and you’re ready to show your bright side (no Jell-O mold required)!

See all of our favorite summer pops of color.

Our favorite trend right now? Midnight Bronze. Our beauty trend editor, Kate Fannin, and our national director of beauty, Debra Redmond, are teaming up to bring you the steps to achieve this gorgeous look for the coming spring and summer.

Read More

We’ve already introducedPretty Striking” as one of our favorite looks for spring. It’s all about bright pink or orange lips, endless lashes and faintly flushed cheeks that all make a lasting impression. Get this look for yourself with our how-to video and a few Beauty Stylist tips from Cory Treadwell at our Downtown Seattle store.

pretty-striking-spring-beauty-trend-bold-lip-nordstrom

Some helpful tips from Cory when customizing this look:

1. Clean and prep the skin.

2. Go backward with your makeup application, and start with the lips instead of ending with them. By applying a ‘striking lip’ first, you can then tailor the rest of your makeup accordingly. How many times have you completed all of your makeup and added a bold lip last, only to realize that your flirty, romantic look turned into a dark and smoldering circus? Bonus with this method: you get the maximum output with the least amount of products.

3. Do not forget about skincare. The better the canvas is prepped, the better the topcoat lasts and looks. Plus, the better your skin looks, the less makeup you actually need!

Get all the tools and products to get Pretty Striking this spring.

M•A•C Senior Artist Cynthia Rivas rounds up a few of her favorite makeup trends at Fashion Week.

When it comes to makeup trends backstage, color is back: white, black, bronze, blue, red and everything in between!

Adam Selman, makeup Jeanine Lobell | Azede Jean-Pierre, makeup M·A·C Cosmetics Director of Makeup Artistry Romero Jennings

Color was applied in a simple yet smart way at Adam Selman. A pop of saffron on the eyes paired with M·A·C Lipstick in ‘Lady Danger’ offered maximum impact with minimal effort. The face was beautifully sculpted with Matchmaster Foundation and Mineralize Powders for contour and highlight. The key for this look was application.

At Azede Jean-Pierre, key artist and our very own M·A·C Cosmetics Director of Makeup Artistry, Romero Jennings, created a look that can be taken off the runway and onto the street. He used M·A·C Eyeshadow in ‘Coppering’ on the eyes to create a winter glow that is gorgeous and sexy on all skin tones. At Calla, a sixties-inspired eye was made modern by using a soft wash of blue through the crease.

Peter Som, makeup Tom Pecheux

Contrast in texture was another strong makeup trend this season. Metallic eyeshadows and gloss texture were some of the most popular products used backstage, seen mainly on the eyes against matte skin. At Peter Som, key artist Tom Pecheux created a sixties-inspired eye using M·A·C Blacktrack Fluidline to shape the eye. Gloss was then applied over the entire lid to create a dewy look. This trend was kept more neutral at Mathieu Mirano by using warm browns to enhance the shape of the face. Gloss was then applied across the entire eyelid to contrast the matte, warm skin.

Key products this season: Gloss, Haute & Naughty Mascara, 224 blending brush.

Follow Cynthia on Twitter for daily beauty tips and how-tos @MAC_Cynthia_R. Photos by Luca Cannonieri and via Azede Jean-Pierre.

Kate Fannin, our beauty trend editor, is getting excited about the biggest trends for spring. She gives us the lowdown on her favorites, and they all add up to Pretty Striking.

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Lips:
Prep your smile, because it’s the season of the “perfect pout!” The must-have lip is all about bold colors—from bright pink to tangerine. Our favorite twist is layering a contrasting gloss color to create your own bespoke look. (Try orange gloss over a fuchsia lipstick.)

Eyes:
Get ready for “holy cow, WOW!” lashes with blacker-than-black mascara to get your serious wink on. This definitely isn’t the season to be shy.

Cheeks:
Maybe best of all? Blush is back. Just add a hint of pink (or coral) to finish the look. It’s the perfect touch of sweet with just enough edge. After all, who doesn’t want to be Pretty and Striking?

And that’s my take,
Kate

Read more about and shop the Pretty Striking spring trend.

February 27, 2014

Spring Beauty Trend Event 2014

It’s time again for our Beauty Trend Event! Get the front-row treatment at our in-store events with a look at runway-inspired trends, complimentary beauty consultations with pro stylists, exclusive gifts and samples. Visit a store near you to reserve your spot and get complete event details.

Can’t make it to our Beauty Trend Event? Shop our favorite spring looks, and Live Chat with us or call 1.800.7beauty to book a free consultation with a Beauty Stylist.

 

Braving the polar vortex of the Northeast and dressed in my trusty all-black backstage outfit (accessorized with Valentino Rockstud rain boots and purple-streaked hair), I headed to NYFW with Debra Redmond. Not only did we see new products and techniques but also some welcome updates to classic and retro makeup.

Tadashi Shoji, Nicole Miller, Alice + Olivia

Imagine if The Road Warrior married Sleeping Beauty, or if Blade Runner dated Snow White, and you’ll have a good idea of the beauty looks we saw for fall 2014. Futuristic influences (dramatic eye makeup and dark nails) contrasted with whimsy and femininity (luminous skin, hints of rose on cheeks and lips), all resulting in the ultimate dark fairytale.

Rebecca Minkoff, Rodarte

Wine-Stained Lips
From winter rose to deep cognac, lips were stained as if lipstick had been applied very intentionally with fingers (at many shows, it was). While the color was deeply pigmented, the edges were somewhat blurred to create an undefined yet very sophisticated (i.e., not messy) and wearable look. The textures leaned toward velvets and satins—some with a subtle hint of shimmer for added dimension—to complement the rich fabrics of the clothes.

Start Practicing Now:
- Lancome L’Absolu Rouge in ‘Berry Noir’
- stila stay all day vinyl lip gloss in ‘Merlot Vinyl’
- Bobbi Brown Creamy Matte Lip Color in ‘Port’

Nicole Miller

Charcoal-Smudged Eyes
The classic smoky eye transformed into a more smudged, slept-in* look in dusky shades—from soft pewter and mouse grey to intense coal and transparent (not chalky) onyx. Layering in deep blue, green and purple shadows added cool interest to basic black, while hints of burnished gold and liquid silver added a slight 3-D effect (and had us thinking ahead to fun holiday looks).

Start Practicing Now:
- M•A•C Pro Longwear Paint in ‘Blackground’
- Smashbox Photo Op Palette in ‘Smokebox’
- NARS The NARSissist Eye Palette

Rebecca Minkoff, Nicole Miller, Peter Som

Two-Tone Nails
Nail art has evolved into a more sophisticated and user-friendly (yeah!) trend of simply using TWO colors. Dare I call it “grown-up” nail art? Many designs were modern takes on classics like the French manicure, and while most were black-based, femininity raised her hand with a new take on nudes. Best of all, almost every design was doable at home!

Start practicing now:
Shop Nail Polish

Cushnie et Ochs

One to Watch…
Keep your eye (pun intended) on exaggerated black liner: winged, double-winged and Charlotte Tilbury’s “feline flick” added serious eye interest and drama to a variety of looks.

And that’s my take!
—Kate

*As any beauty devotee knows: always remember to remove makeup before bed. While we all appreciate the LOOK of smudged shadow and mascara, we recommend you create it yourself the next morning v. irritating your eyes or damaging your skin (or pillowcase!) by sleeping in your makeup.

Photos: Gorunway.com, Alice + Olivia, Rebecca Minkoff, Peter Som.