Wrap Up Your Flawless by Laura Mercier

Laura collage4Thanks to a dear friend and The Gardens Club, I spent a beautiful Friday morning recently with the internationally renowned brand of cosmetics (skincare, body & bath and fragrance too), Laura Mercier’s global make-up artist, Luis Soto himself, all the way from New York in what they called Wrap Up Your Flawless makeup workshop since the festive season is approaching.

Laura collage3Laura collage1Once all participants have arrived and seated, Mr. Luis swiftly moved on with the workshop by introducing himself and the brand (which I believe need no elaborate introduction already!). For more than 15 years, the creator, Laura herself and her make up industry has won critical acclaim among models, celebrities and photographers alike. Luis explained that Laura Mercier creates looks that are both flawless and accentuate one’s natural beauty. Immediately, he requested for a volunteer from the participants for the morning, and a sweet lady in bright orange top stood up and risen to the occasion. I was excited to see how Luis Soto transform her bare face into a natural beauty.

laura artistLuis emphasized the importance of Laura Mercier’s 4 simple steps to create that flawless face (am sure we are all excited about). Of course, before any make-up application, skincare regimen is crucial to prep the skin well. Some basic skincare range was introduced and products were passed around for us to try and check out their textures. With great ease, he started to prep her face, with Laura’s famous foundation primer. That he said, would be the first step to flawless skin. Since her skin is already fairly good, Luis continued to apply Laura’s signature and award-winning tinted moisturizer, instead of foundation. Instantly, her face was transformed and evened out even more. Luis revealed another secret weapon to flawless face is their concealers (one can choose either the moisture-riched secret concealer or the two-toned iconic oil free and long wearing secret camouflage). That would be step three. The final step would be applying the ultra light-weight, sheer and silky setting powder. With that, a flawless face would have been completed.

Laura collage2Next, Luis introduced to us their latest festive holiday collection Wrap Up Your Flawless. Endless colours and combination to choose from! A day look is completed with blush, lip colours and mascara. Since it is for the holiday, Luis turned up the heat and continued to show us how to take the day look into a more fabulous and glam night look with shimmer effects mini caviar stick eye colours for that easy smokey eye! Voila, she is all ready to party (don’t you agree >_<)

Laura wrap up your flawless

Wrap Up Your Flawless Holiday Collection 2013. All pictures via A Stairway To Heaven blog

Laura collage5All in all, it was an informative workshop. I secretly wished that they would have structured the workshop to be more hands on so that the participants can actually try the make-up on ourselves! Then, I believe it would have been more experiencial and fun *_^

To discover more about the brand, click here. If you would like to find out more about the latest happenings at The Gardens Mall Club, more here.  Till then, have a fabulous week ahead and happy Monday, everyone!

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[Faces] RMK Make-up Maestro Mr. Masaaki Abe (Japan) Believes In Natural Beauty

RMK brochure chat withRMK makeup bookletsTruly excited I was to be able to have a face-to-face chat with the make-up professional himself, Mr. Masaaki Abe (all the way from Japan!) for RMK. Of course, with the help of our friendly interpreter, Mr. Cheong and the kind arrangement by Minda from RMK Malaysia.*_^

RMK is a Japanese brand which has its roots within the New York make-up artistry, but focuses on bringing across its cosmetics and skincare products from the laboratories in Japan itself. With RMK’s philosophy of “Revealing the best and most beautiful you!”, Mr. Masaaki talked to me recently what he thinks of make-up and what beauty truly means to him. Calm, collected, very soft spoken and well-mannered, Mr. Masaaki, in all black, is actually very friendly and answers all the questions I threw at him, with great ease and passion. I could tell his deep rooted love for the art itself. Perhaps it’s the RMK products which he has been using (he has been with RMK for more than 4 years now), his face is glowing and has a skin as smooth as a baby! (Really, no joke ^_^). I quickly asked him which is his favourite skincare product from RMK, he gladly revealed to me (will let you in the secret at the end of this post, be patient). This is what we talked about (in essence of course, as we spoked a great deal that beautiful day!)

RMK masaaki abe

The maestro himself, Mr. Masaaki Abe. Thanks for talking to me!

With the helpful interpreter for the day, Mr. Cheong

With the helpful interpreter for the day, Mr. Cheong

How did you get involved with beauty and make-up? Well, it was way back in my high school time. Whenever I was free, I would love to see how women put on their make-up, and eventually, I went onto making women beautiful by doing their make-up! It is the joy of seeing women shine beautifully, after applying make-up that I realized this was where I want to be – to make each and every woman feel beautiful, in their own way. It makes me happy to see them happy.

RMK BoardsWhat does the RMK brand stand for? RMK is a strong believer in natural beauty and enhancing a women’s beauty through our cosmetics, our brand has that very New York feel, current and fresh but with a Japanese approach to make-up. We are famous for our base make-up and natural finishing products, among others.

What’s the uniqueness of the latest RMK Autumn/Winter 2013 Make-up Collection? With this palates, we focus on the eye make-up. The texture is very smooth, creamy with strikingly mute earthy colours but also very wearable and easy to blend with the pearl-like ingredients in the shadows. You don’t have to be a professional to apply and still achieve the polished look. It is also about layering those colours together to create a harmonious effect for your eyes. Finish the look with a hint of pink blush and lipstick with glossy lip gloss and that’s all you need to look pretty. Of course, load up with our award-winning mascara to complete the look!

RMK masaaki in session7Due to the Korean trend, it is such a huge impact that Korean make-up has on women today, how is Japanese make-up different from the Korean make-up? Korean make-up tend to focus on creating the cat-eye look, and very glowing skin, for Japanese, you will notice that Japanese girls like to make their eyes look BIG (simply because we Japanese men love big eyes girls) with eye make-up and put on a more pinky rosy cheeks. As for the face, it is more with a natural finish. Then again, make-up is very personal, it is about your own creative expression. There is no right or wrong to it.

RMK products collageI was told by some make-up artists that BB cream may not be a good thing for everyone. Is that so? First of all, one must understand the function of a BB cream. It is a combination of skincare and make-up product in one. Of course, it is convenient to just use one product to prepare your face, and cut down your make-up time, but we believe that your skin needs a protective barrier after your skincare application, before your make-up, so that your make-up can also stay on longer. Applying a thin layer of base before your actual foundation application is an important step.

I have combination skin and make-up tend to not last long, how do I overcome such predicament? Well, you are living in a humid and tropical place, there is no such foundation or make-up that will last hours and hours without needing any sort of touch up at all. You will just need to be a little “hardworking” and do some minor touch-up here and there, as and when you need to.

What is beauty, to you, as a make-up artist? Beauty? There is no absolute beauty in life. It is the little imperfection in you that makes you beautiful. Like how RMK believes, let your natural beauty shine through, with the little help of make-up. That is beauty to me. Don’t go all out of your way to be perfectly beautiful. That is not beauty.

If you were not a make-up artist today, what would you be? Wow, that’s a good question… (he thought and thought hard for quite a while) Seriously, I have never thought about it that way. I guess I would still be a make-up artist, one way or the other. (He ended that with a grin on his charming-looking face)

That thought of Mr. Masaaki on beauty really hit a chord in me. Honestly, I was like a novice and a humble student trying to learn as much as possible from the expert. Mr. Masaaki was never weighed down by my seemingly endless questions! In fact, he answered them all with such enthusiasm and seriousness that I truly admire and appreciate (for spending his time with me). I guess the best thing I got out of talking with him, is that not taking make-up too seriously and just embrace the best part of me. It was such fun talking to him. Thanks again! Sensei! Arigato, Abe San.

Oh right, I almost forgot. This is his secret to “almost”-perfect-looking skin (now we  know!). If you would like to know more about his tips and tricks to achieving a dewy look, do check out my previous RMK workshop post here. For more on RMK, do check out their website here.

RMK Skintuner Smoother Light, Mr. Masaaki Abe's favourite product of RMK.

RMK Skintuner Smoother Light, Mr. Masaaki Abe’s favourite product of RMK.

Till my next FACES session with another personality, stay luminous and have a lovely weekend!

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[Instagram] So Much Have Gone By

insta collage7It’s been a while since I updated what’s been happening on my IG. Been to a great make-up session with RMK by Japanese make-up artist, Masaaki Abe himself recently, had such great fun, then bought myself a pair of colourful Zara heels! Been addicted to this Korean drama called The Master’s Sun starring the gorgeous looking So Ji Sub and cute Gong Hyo Jin (so, my Wednesday and Thursday nights are off limits, even my TV lover-hubby also stepped aside to let me have my “dating” time with the leads and their ghost friends!). I was extremely excited to also roll out LUMINNEJ very first giveaway, a collaboration with Cle De Peau BEAUTE Malaysia. (Still waiting for entry to pour in *_^) and of course, was invited to attend the inaugural local Mandarin film industry’s Golden Wau Awards 2013 ceremony. There, I met up with new talents, model cum actress Tracy Cheong, among others. It was glamourous indeed.

Am really looking forward to more new things happening with LUMINNEJ and hope to achieve more here, be it making new friends, or working with new partners to share the passion about all things beautiful. Above all, hope to connect with different people out there. A big thanks for all my readers (thought not many yet, at this point, haha but I am grateful) and hope you will stay with me, on this journey of making LUMINNNEJ a better lifestyle blog, each day, everyday, with small little steps, at a time. More on RMK here, Cle De Peau BEAUTE here and The Master’s Sun here.

As always, stay luminous and happy, always!

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RMK Dewy Make-up Workshop With Masaaki Abe from Japan

RMK products6 smallerIt was a beautiful Sunday morning. I was excited as I was getting prepared and was heading for my very first make-up workshop (all thanks to the good people at RMK Malaysia for the invite!) at Pastis, The Gardens Mall. When it comes to make-up, I am but a novice, so I was anticipating to learn some tips and tricks on how to achieve a dewy make-up look (which I absolutely adore and would love to know how to do myself!) with RMK’s latest Autumn/Winter 2013 Collection. Furthermore, all the participants attending will be personally guided by the make-up maestro himself, Mr. Masaaki Abe, all the way from RMK Japan!

RMK collage product smallerRMK pastis smallerI reached there pretty early, so, I hung out at Pastis for a while and took some pictures. All make-up products and materials were carefully prepared and placed at each table. As I was strolling over to the RMK counter at Isetan, and there I saw the young-looking Mr. Masaaki himself, at the concourse area, with his interpretor for the day, Mr. Cheong. I couldn’t help  myself but to greet them, and we started chatting away, mainly about make-up and what he does. But we had to cut our conversation short as the participants of the workshop had arrived and the workshop needed to be on the way. He humbly excused himself and strolled off. I went back to Pastis and got myself ready for an exciting session.

Mr. Masaaki Abe from Japan, explaining, enthusiastically,  interpreted by Mr. Cheong

The charming Mr. Masaaki Abe from Japan, explaining, enthusiastically, interpreted by Mr. Cheong

RMK collage teaching smallerThe session started with Mr. Masaaki introducing RMK the brand and what it stands for and what we will be doing for the workshop. It was divided into two main sections – Basic dewy foundation make-up and Point make-up (using colours especially focusing on the eyes). With such grace and ease, Masaaki explained away how to create that perfect canvas for the face. He emphasized that “Less is more” when it comes to applying foundation and applying a thin layer of base (with big strokes across the face to achieve evenness) is utmost crucial to a perfect make-up staying power. A pink corrector will also help to put back some “colour” onto your face (if it is not pale and dull already before the make-up), elaborated Mr. Masaaki. With experts strokes and touches, the dewy make-up based was completed and participants were given time to try out the method themselves.

RMK masaaki in session4 smallerRMK masaaki in session7 smallerNext, we moved onto point make-up where the latest Autumn/Winter Collection was used, carefully shown by Mr. Masaaki, how easy it was to apply this specially formulated gel type pearl-like pigmented eyeshadow. The eyes instantly popped and brightened the whole face. The award-winning RMK mascara were used after the eyelashes were carefully curled (with a special “pull-down” technique taught by Mr. Masaaki) to achieve the greatest length and volume! I was amazed how different the eyes looked by now, on the model’s face. A flush of pink cheek colour was applied and a gloss completed the whole look. It was simple, yet the finishing look exuded a certain charm and dewiness that had that glow-from-within-kind of make-up look! Amazing indeed. The participants tried on the technique excitedly after that and everyone was having such a great time (with the assistance of some helpful RMK beauty consultants). Some participants even grabbed the chance to take some pictures with the master himself towards the end of the workshop (Me included >_<).

RMK collage pictime smallerAll in all, it was a wonderful experience and I had a great deal of fun as I have learnt so much from him. Do stay tuned for my one-to-one interview (chat) with the master himself, coming up on my FACES segment soon. I can’t wait to share what we have discussed previously. Till then, have a fantastic weekend ahead!

Stay luminous and happy, always.

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