Brush Up

When I meet clients who are having trouble with a certain technique, or say that they can't figure out why (fill in the blank) is happening when they apply makeup, my first question is always, "What does your brush look like?" Often times they are using a brush that is old and worn out, poor quality, hasn't been washed this decade (shame!), or is just plain not right for the job they are trying to do. You wouldn't stir pancake batter with a straw would you? Hopefully not. The same idea goes for makeup brushes. The wrong tool can make a mess of what you are trying to accomplish. And the right tool can make it so much easier.

The problem that often arises then, is that there are so many options to chose from. I personally use a variety of brushes on myself, and also carry a number of different brands in my kit. I had the luxury of getting brushes at a steep discount when I used to work for a cosmetic line, and while those are still in my kit and serving me well after all these years, I don't know that they're in my price range these days. That sucks for the everyday consumer. Because it's confusing. How are you supposed to choose between one really expensive brush, or a whole bunch that cost less? There are many options on the market, and I hope I can help give some insight. And honestly, price means nothing. All that matters is the quality, and the way it performs. I have brushes I picked up for a couple dollars that I love just as much as brushes that retail for over $60. It's silly.

I'm making a mental note to break down the world of brushes here in future posts. But for now I wanted to share a little about some brushes that were sent to me for an honest review. I recently received three brushes from Stilazzi to play with and talk about. I had the chance to use them on set for a music video with an older male actor, as well as over this past weekend during two different bridal consultations. I am pleasantly surprised.

I say surprised only because of what I mentioned earlier. There are so many brushes on the market. And a lot of them are pretty terrible. So I never know what to expect. These brushes are really great.

1. Buff Brush (Retails $30 and worth every penny) - Favorite! Big, dense, fluffy head. Rocking a flat top that is incredible for buffing face makeup. You could use this to apply powder all over. I used it after applying bronzer and blush to my bride, to literally buff everything so it appeared completely seamless. I've needed a brush like this for a while. It's something I would buy for myself, and also my kit.
2. Medium Shadow Brush (Retails $21) - A smaller, thicker head, about index finger nail size. Great for soft shadow application on the lid.
3. Flat Shadow Brush (Retails $22) - A larger, flat head, a little bigger than thumbnail size. Works great for quick all over shadow color. I also used it to pat concealer under the eyes.

  • Quality natural fibers, meaning they are great for powder or creams
  • Firm, but soft to the touch
  • Good handle length, not too long or short
  • Super lightweight
  • Little to no shedding
  • Mid-range price

  • There was a little "dust" that fluffed out of them at first, though that's normal (tip: always wash your new brushes before using to clean/sanitize them from production and shipping)
  • The ferrule (part that holds handle & fibers together) on the face Buff brush felt a little loose, though it doesn't hinder use at all
  • Mid-range price (like I said before, I have some very inexpensive brushes that I adore)

Overall I really loved these brushes, and they will definitely be a staple in my kit. I will probably pick up another of the Buff brush for myself since it really impressed me. And the Makeup Show is coming up in NYC, so I will be checking out the rest of the brushes in person to add some more to my stash. Frends Beauty Supply carries them in store in Hollywood, and also online.

What questions do you guys have about brushes? I'd love to address some in a future post.


What's In My Kit? Take a Peek with Pinterest...

A few weeks ago, I sat back and jotted down some ideas for blog posts. I was feeling uninspired and unmotivated. Hence my silence for a while there. So I looked to good old-fashioned brainstorming on paper. I looked at my list, and while some are definitely ideas that will show up here in the coming months, some were so vague I didn't know where to even start.
I'm sure many of you turn to the internet to look for inspiration just like I do. I am constantly reading blogs and pinning things to my boards on Pinterest to keep track of everything. Fashion, hair style ideas, home decor, etc. I've been using Pinterest for a long time now, and am so happy to see it growing in popularity. It's so community based, and I love seeing what inspires my friends and fellow artists on there.

It finally donned on me that it would be a great place share what products are in my kit and why I love them! And I am finally getting around to setting this particular board up.

So check out my "What's In My Kit?" board, and take a peek inside my makeup kit to see what I am using on my clients, and why I love these products. And if you are not already using Pinterest, what are you waiting for?!


I Love My Brides & My Brides Love Me!

Thanks to the great reviews from past clients, I got this little gem! Word of mouth is so important in this industry, and if it weren't for the kind words my beautiful brides have left for me on sites like Wedding Wire and Yelp, I wouldn't be able to keep doing what I am doing. I've been busy getting my ducks in a row here in NYC. It's overwhelming to say the least. But this city has so much to offer. I'm trying to break into more film and TV here. It's a long process. But I love my brides, and will always be honored to share these special days with them, no matter what direction my career heads in. More blog posts soon, I promise. And I can't wait to share some New York weddings with you this season! I have a feeling it's going to be great!

Weddings, Wedding Venues
2012 Bride's Choice Awards | Best Wedding Photographers, Wedding Dresses, Wedding Cakes, Wedding Florists, Wedding Planners

"New York, New York – April 2, 2012 – WeddingWire, the nation's leading wedding Marketplace, is excited to announce Morgan Gates Makeup Artist has been selected to receive the prestigious WeddingWire Bride’s Choice Awards™ 2012 for Beauty and Health! 

The esteemed annual awards program recognizes the top local wedding vendors from the WeddingWire Network who demonstrate excellence in quality, service, responsiveness and professionalism within the wedding industry. While many industry awards are selected by the organization, Morgan Gates Makeup Artist was selected based on stellar reviews from past newlywed clients. 

Morgan Gates Makeup Artist is recognized as part of the top five percent of wedding professionals in the WeddingWire local vendor community, comprised of over 200,000 wedding professionals throughout the United States and Canada. The Bride’s Choice Award recognizes  the best local wedding vendors across 20 service categories, from wedding venues to wedding photographers, based on their overall professional achievements throughout the past year. 

“WeddingWire is thrilled to honor the success of the top-rated wedding professionals within the WeddingWire Community,” said Timothy Chi, CEO, WeddingWire. “Since the launch of the Bride’s Choice Awards™ program four years ago, thousands of outstanding wedding professionals have been recognized by the bridal community for their supreme service and dedication to the wedding industry. It is with great pleasure that we congratulate Morgan Gates Makeup Artist for continued professionalism and commitment to enriching the wedding planning experience for engaged couples.”

We are happy to announce that Morgan Gates Makeup Artist is one of the very best within the WeddingWire Network, which includes leading wedding planning sites WeddingWire, Project Wedding, Brides.com, Martha Stewart Weddings, and Weddingbee. We would like to thank past clients for taking the time to review her business on WeddingWire. Thanks to their positive feedback she was able  to receive the WeddingWire Bride’s Choice Awards™ for 2012. 

For more information, please visit her WeddingWire Storefront today at http://www.weddingwire.com/biz/morgan-gates-makeup-artist-brooklyn/ff6eb08b2eda95f6.html

To learn more about the Bride's Choice Awards™, please visit www.WeddingWire.com. 

About WeddingWire, Inc.
WeddingWire™, the nation's leading marketplace serving the $70 billion wedding industry, is the only online wedding planning resource designed to empower both engaged couples and wedding professionals. For engaged couples, WeddingWire offers the ability to search, compare and book over 200,000 reviewed wedding vendors, from wedding venues to wedding photographers. WeddingWire also offers a comprehensive suite of online planning tools for weddings, including wedding websites and wedding checklists, all at no charge. For wedding professionals, WeddingWire is the only all-in-one marketing platform for businesses online and on-the-go. WeddingWire offers one simple solution to build a professional network, improve search visibility, manage social media and reach mobile consumers. Businesses that advertise with WeddingWire appear on WeddingWire.com, ProjectWedding.com and other leading sites, including MarthaStewartWeddings.com (NYSE: MSO), Brides.com and Weddingbee.com. "