mac cosmetics

The Highlighters You NEED.

Now with the Summer months approaching here! I thought you may want to see my favourite highlighting products to help give you that beautiful radiant sheen in the summer months.
I’m not sure about you but I’m a sucker for all things glowy, ‘sheeny’ and radiant looking. I love how they instantly help to make me look I’ve had 12 hours of sleep, I have the worlds best skin and to cheat that I eat my 5 portions of fruit and veg a day. Lolz.


Who doesn’t love a good highlight?

Best Highlighting Product for a Skincare Lover:
Advanced Genifique Youth Activating Concerntrate

I’m kicking off with more of a skincare care treatment product. This is a serum so you need to use it everyday, the more you use it the more it will benefit your skin. It’s more of a long term permanent investment more than a cheaper quick fix ‘fake it’ product, hence the price tag at £59. BUT it’s so worth it.

Meet Lancome’s Advanced Genifique.

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I’ve been a HUGE fan of this product for about nearly 4 years now and used it almost every day since.
I apply this product every morning after I have applied my toner before my moisturiser. I’ve noticed it has really helped to improve the bright appearance of my skin, by making it looking brighter, fresher, more even toned and clearer. It also makes my skin smoother and softer. It works amazingly on a morning to give that fresh bright glow, without leaving the skin feeling greasy, oily or sticky. Its a clear formula which sinks into the skin straight away not leaving any residue or film. The perfect serum in my opinion!

It also works AMAZINGLY mixing it into a liquid foundation which already gives a nice healthy glow, to double the impact – making the skin look flawless!
Available to purchase here at £59 – £94, depending on preferred size.

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Best Highlight for Dark Skin:
MAC Lustre Drops

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If you were wanting more of a an instant result and have more of an olive to dark skin. If you have a paler skin, I wouldn’t recommend so much, as the gold is incredible gold and ‘orange toned’. The MAC Liquid Lustre Drops in ‘Gold’ are stunning. You only get a small amount of product (18ml) but these are incredibly pigmented. Again you can use these on top of foundation for the high point of the face or mix it into foundation. I prefer to apply onto of the foundation as I feel its more noticeable and using a duo fibre brush I feel works well to gently buff the product into the skin without breaking down the base product, as they are very runny.
Available to purchase here at £18.

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Winning Highlight for Multi-Purpose use:
MAC Strobe

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Another brilliant product by MAC which I cant go on a job without is MAC Strobe Liquid Lotion – original shade.

This stuff is amazing! So multi purpose!
You can either use it as a moisturiser base, before foundation, you can mix it with your foundation to lighten it a tiny bit and add a lovely radiance or you can just apply to the high point of the face. Again like the previous MAC product I think it works best to buff it into the skin lightly with a duo fibre blending brush. You can use your fingers with this product but I’ve find it just gets absolutely everywhere and feels like such a waste.
This product has lasted me 3 years – such an investment as a small amount goes along way as its so pearlised. Now MAC have launched some more shades to there collection to get the perfect colour glow you would like ranging from the original (pink) to red, gold, silver, you really should go into mac and swatch. I love the red toned one – which is surprising as the same does sound scarily awful. Its personal preference but I really recommend checking the strobe cream out if you’re wanting a higher end quick fix highlighter that multi purpose!
– Note: Mines the Lotion, I’m not sure if this is still available to purchase, but the lotion is just a tiny bit thinner than the cream, if you’re confused by the name.
Available here at £25.

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Best Photographic Highlight:
Illamasqua Gleam

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Another kit favourite of mine is the Illamasqua Cream Gleam Highlighters in ‘Aurora’ and they do a darker shade in ‘Supernatural’ which I also have in my kit, which is more of a coppery bronzed shade rather than a yellow toned gold in comparison to the MAC Lustre Drops.
Be aware though that you do need to use these sparingly, as they can go a little bit ‘patchy and bitty’ if you use too much on the skin. But they photograph is seamless, so stunning, a really instagram pop of highlight, so soft, satiny but bright and reflective.
I find they only work by patting onto of base product, I don’t feel like they come through if you were to apply before a base product. In my time of using them also I’ve found they work best being warmed on the back of the hand before being patted onto the skin using my ring finger. I wouldn’t recommend a ‘rubbing’ circular motion to work this into the skin, as with the texture its quite thick to needs to be gently manipulated into the skin. If you go into store I suggest swatching this first before buying, so you can feel the texture if it would work for yourself. To me the texture isn’t completely desireable, but I love it because the results it gives.
Available here at £25.

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Top Budget Highlight under £5: 
MUA ‘Undress Your Skin’ Powder Highlight

I am obsessed with these, if you dont own at least one, where have you been. You need to go purchase one and thank me later. You can thank me for introducing you to a super duper cheap life changing powder which will give you compliments to the high heavens every time you wear it.
I own the Iridescent Gold, Pink Shimmer & Peach Shimmer. Hands down all are flawless and beautiful for the price, they give intense colour pay off and such a beautiful sheen on the skin. Apply so easy and are so buildable, they dont apply patchy nor do they looks too cheap or too sparkly with huge chunks of glitter.
My first one was the pink shimmer, and I get SO MANY compliments I cant even tell you when I wear this. I wore this to work once, and after 45 minutes the girl went on her break to go and buy it as  she couldn’t stop staring at the glow haha! Its also been referred to as a ‘unicorn’ highlight too, its incredible. You will love.

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Hope you have have found the post useful, please leave me a comment below and make sure you’re following my blog to not miss out on future posts!

Thank you,




Professional Make-up Artist Discounts

Now I have finished at university, I have started to plan and think about applying for brand pro discount cards (instead of student), as now I will be working more regularly in the industry.
I thought this would be beneficial to those professional make-up artists in the UK who maybe in the same position as myself, with just recently coming out of education and starting freelance.
Although industry professionals are very lucky and extremely grateful that these programmes have been put in place for us, to receive generous discount it can be a daunting, time consuming experience at the same time. Making sure you have the right identification for the card can be a confusing experience, as well as keeping up to date on new brands joining the band wagon and offering these schemes. You can end up feeling a little lost in where to start.
Hopefully some confusion can be ironed out below!

Please see below a list of brands, with a link of more information with details on who you apply/ send the form to.
Some US readers may also find these helpful, as I have also included US only links for you 😉

What PRO ID will I need?
Depending on what brand you are applying for will change, for what type of Professional ID they will require and the number of different copies they will need. You need to read the requirements for each brand carefully.
What material is classed as Professional ID?
Material can be your Professional Qualifications/ Certificates, Website, Business Cards,  Tear/ Editorial Sheets, Staff Cards, Other Make-up Discount Cards and Production Company Call Sheets, low budget productions also count.
What is a Union Card?
A popular union card is the BECTU card. You pay a small amount of money each month to be part of the union and in return you receive a card which you can use to easily show you are a working industry professional.
What is a Tear Sheet/ Editorial Page?
A tear or editorial page is an image of page out of a recent publication which has the full credited team along the bottom, including yourself on make-up.
What material is classed as Professional ID?
Material can be your Professional Qualifications/ Certificates, Website, Business Cards,  Staff Cards, Other Make-up Discount Cards and Production Company Call Sheets, low budget productions also count.
How do I prove I am an Agency Represented Make-up Artist?
The best way to prove this would be to link your page/ profile on your agents website along with the correct information for the company to contact your agent personally to verify any information if needed.
Now onto the exciting bit. The brands who I’ve found offer generous discount to working make-up artists:
1. NARS Cosmetics UK 25-40%
2. MAC Cosmetics UK 15-35%
Apply Here:
3. BOBBI BROWN Cosmetics 20-35%
Apply Here:
4. Urban Decay (US ONLY) 40%
7. Daniel Sandler (UK ONLY) upto 20% 
Download the appropriate form here:
8. CROWNPRO (CrownBrush) discount told upon request
Apply Here:
10. Smashbox PRO (US & CANADA ONLY)discount told upon request
11. Cocktail Cosmetics 10-20%
(Ardell, Bdellium Tools, Brushguard, Cozzette,  Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics, Shadowshields, Ben Nye, Yaby Cosmetics,  XL Z Palette)
Apply Here:
12. Love Make-up 20%
(Kevyn Aucoin, Viseart, Ellis Faas, OCC, Amazing Cosmetics, Bdellium Tools, Pro Chart, Japonesque,  Ardell Lashes, Shadow Shields, The Brush Guard,  DUO Lash, Cozzette vegan brushes,  London Brush Company, OCC Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics, Monda Studio, Sigma, JT Makeup Studio & Louise Young.)
Apply Here:
13. Make-up Artist Magazineoptional level of discount
14. Stila Pro upto 30%
Email: or
15. My Kit Co. 15-20%
Tier 1 (Agency Represented MUA’s) 20% on individual items
Tier 2 (Non Agency Represented MUA’s) 15% on individual items
16. Charlotte Tilbury 30%
Thank you for reading, let me know if this has been helpful!


BTS with Chris Harvey

On Saturday I worked with Photographer Chris Harvey, in Leeds.

For this shoot as part of my final major project I worked with Chris Harvey and the twin girls from Boss Model Management Taliah & Tiffany Sanderson.

Please see below a few images from the day:

Im SO excited to see the final images from Chris, I had a really fun day and would love to work with him again in the future!

Thank you for reading 🙂

Ruth x

BTS with Chloe- Anne Charnock


Today I wanted to share with you a BTS from last Thursdays shoot, which I arranged in Chorley.
The photographer on the day was Chloe- Anne Charnock, with the model being Amber from Boss Model Management.
I was so lucky and fortunate enough to be able to hire 2 head pieces from a high fashion millinery designer in London ‘Le Roni Head Pieces’, which have been featured in Vogue Online. They were BEAUTIFUL.

Please find below pictures from the day:

I really enjoyed this shoot with Chloe, she’s so lovely to work with and works in a different way to any other photographers I’ve worked with so it was interesting to work her way for a change.
Amber also had a beautifil face to work on with flawless skin, so made my job super easy!
And as for the Head Pieces I can’t thank Roni and Dan enough for their time and travelling, I hope you are all happy with the final images when we have received 🙂

Thanks for reading, my next post will be about another BTS with Chris Harvey.


Ruth x


Final Photos Narita & Sofie


Sorry I have missed a few days, I have been in Manchester the past 2 days so havent had chance to update this!

But since my last post I have received back some final images from my shoot in February with Narita Savoor & Sofie from Nemesis Model Management and excited to share them with you.

If you remember the shoot was ‘Sculpted Beauty’, which involved creating a bleached brow effect.

Here are the Images:

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Photographer: Narita Savoor Model: Sofie @ Nemesis M&H: Ruth Brabiner

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Photographer: Narita Savoor Model: Sofie @ NemesisPhotographer: Narita Savoor Model: Sofie @ Nemesis M&H: Ruth Brabiner

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Photographer: Narita Savoor Model: Sofie @ Nemesis M&H: Ruth Brabiner


Photographer: Narita Savoor Model: Sofie @ Nemesis M&H: Ruth Brabiner

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Photographer: Narita Savoor Model: Sofie @ Nemesis M&H: Ruth Brabiner


Hope you like!

If you would like to know what products I used, please comment below.


Ruth x

Top MAC Products for a MUA Kit


Below I have listed a few of my favourite products from MAC, which I have in my kit, I think this is great for anyone starting out in make-up and what you should have a look at or look out for. This is just my personal views, they’re are plenty of other brands which do similar products, which may work better for you however this is just what I like to have in my kit, I hope you enjoy!

1. Face & Body Foundation- £22+
This is a holy grail foundation which ever make-up artist has in there kit!!! When I first started using this I really didnt like it, I couldnt get it ‘to work’ and it just looked patchy and way too dewy for my liking and it frustrated my why I couldn’t love this product initially. I think this was because I’d never used a foundation which is water based before and hearing the hype and love for Face & Body I expected to fall in love with it instantly… However now it can be a foundation that I can 100% rely on in my kit and take it to every job for a fresh, natural looking base. Its brilliant for editorial/ beauty work  as it contains no spf. Its buildable, light weight, can be used on the body, blendable and comes in an a ray of colours. Making it perfect for even male models who aren’t particularly keen on the whole make-up process and it dries pretty fast too, so no waiting around needed before getting into outfits! I like to use this with a duo fibre brush like the 187 also from MAC, but I do like to go over or use the Real Techniques ‘Buffing Brush’ too, for a little more coverage. But it works just as well using your fingers too, as it thickens with the warmth of your fingers tips. In department stores Face and Body is stocked in 50ml however at Pro free standing stores you can get your hands on 120ml sizes, which are great for make-up artists!

2. Concealer Palettes – £35 each
These are brilliant concealer palettes for make-up artist’s because the amount of product you get in is actually quite a lot and has lasted me ages! Even when  one colours has fully run out I can buy the concealer and just depot the product back into the right square to save me carrying around more packaging than necessary. MAC do 3 shades of these palettes ‘Light’, ‘Medium’ & ‘Deep’ I personally have got the lightest and the darkest as to me it made more sense to get the lightest one and then mix it with the dark palette to make the medium shades from the medium palette. The concealers inside the palette are the Studio Sculpt Concealers so very creamy which do need to be set with powder especially under the eye areas as they have a tendacy to crease. They also work brilliantly for shading and highlighting areas of the face because of how creamy they are, I love using them with a flat concealer brush and then blending in with MAC 286 brush.


3. Palettes – £5+
I think the custom made palettes are definitely one of the main products which set as side MAC from any other brand out there. The customization you can build up of eye shadows, blushes, sculpting powders etc is brilliant.
I think the 2 palettes which MAC have released in 2014 (I think) are amazing value and definitely a must have for anyone wanting to get into make-up or build there kit. I must say I do tend to use my warm toned palette the most out of the 2 and it does tend to get more compliments on. The only negative with the pre packed palettes is they cant be removed from the palette which is a little upsetting as I wanted to move both mine into a double palette as it saves me carrying them both separately but unfortunately it cant be done wahhh!!! I think the palettes make lovely gifts too they are never too heavy the only down side to getting a double palette is the labelling can be a little but of a pain however that just might be me, being a fussy one.

4. Lip Liners- £12.50
I know there are plenty of cheaper brands out there that do amazing lip liners for a lot cheaper, ahem Kiko Cosmetics. But for this I thought I would mention MAC for those who are looking for good lip pencils, which sharpen beautifully, lasts a long time, strong and don’t break no matter how many times they’ve ended up falling on the floor. Creamy, soft, none drying, long lasting and none running is the best way to sum these lip liners up. There’s so many beautiful colours to the collection I’m sure you’ll find one perfect for what you’re after!

5. Brush Cleanser-£12
A bit of a boring topic but MAC’s brush cleanser is amazing for on the job. I wouldn’t use it to replace giving my brushes a proper warm water wash, but whilst on the job and needing to clean a brush its amazing. I love it because it takes the product out of the brush instantly and the brush dries very quickly. Its very gently to the brush hairs so my brushes are kept in good condition when I use it. Its not greasy or oily like some brush cleanser are which I’ve tried in the past. These make sense to break down the make-up within the brush but getting the oil out off the brush can be really hard. The top as well is a press top so you can pour out a small amount, you just have to be careful when travelling nothing presses down on the lid…

Hope that was an interesting read let me know your thoughts and what you like from MAC. Of course there are so many other products which are great such as the paint pots the strobe cream but these are my personal kit faves.

Ruth x

Images taken from:

Male Beauty. 


Heres a shoot I worked on towards the end of 2015.
For this shoot I worked with the incredible Narita Savoor and Reiss Harrison from Nemesis Model Management

The theme for this shoot was male beauty. This was to show basic corrective and concealing work as well as highlighting and shading on the body too. I didn’t have any strong images like this in my portfolio,  showing male beauty, so really needed to include this in my portfolio development module.

The day went so fast and both Narita and Reiss were so lovely and professional to work  with. I had a lovely day in a new area I had not worked in before, Altrincham. The day was also filmed by Narita’s lighting company Pixapro for an advertisement style video, to show which pieces of equipment Narita uses so hopefully I can share that with you at some point! 

I am in love with the final images Im so so so pleased with them!! The 6 train journey was 100% worth it! 

I cant wait to shoot with Narita later on this year! Exciting things to come 😊 Thank you both Narita and Reiss for putting time aside to work with me!

Whats your thoughts on the images? Let me know your favourite one in the comments as I am going to struggle to pick for my portfolio! 

Ruth x