Updated: Aug 3
Photo by Tracy Eason
Q: What’s the No. 1 goal you have when doing a client’s makeup?
A: When someone hires me, often it’s for an important reason. I know sometimes it can feel like a splurge and I want the client to have a great experience and get the most of the luxury experience. The client should know the value in hiring a pro. I want the client to feel their most beautiful, confident & happy after leaving my chair.
Q: Why does makeup have that effect on people?
A: When we look our best, we feel better about ourselves. When we're more confident for occasion or event, we enjoy ourselves more. The photos turn out better and people notice that confidence, not the makeup.
Q: Is there a common concern you see with your clients?
A: To be a fly on my wall! I have a variety of clients — celebrities, high profile clients, clients who are changing careers, busy moms, wedding parties, galas, charity events, graduations, we see entrepreneurs, prom, professionals and so on. Specific concerns are very individual. They usually are trusting me to make their eyebrows close to perfect or for makeup application. Everyone can agree they want to look & feel their best & like fresh, glowing skin, no matter their age.
Q: Do you have any tips for fresh, glowing skin?
A: Drinks lots of water and use a nice lightweight moisturizer for your skin type. Try balmy cream blushes or gel bronzers with a foundation brush on top of foundation to create a soft, dewy look to the skin. In my 25+ years as a makeup artist-The best foundations are by Ellis Faas Cosmetics the Skin Veil exclusively in Houston at Lucky Cat Beauty. For a little bit less coverage I love Drunk Elephant Whipped Cream (another local entrepreneur) , Don’t be afraid of mineral powders. I have been using the same lab for my mineral powders for years. They have a cult following & work well with men, women, old, young, dry or oily skin. Try using them for contouring too. It's more natural. They're magic!
Q: What are the current trends in makeup?
A: Very natural eyebrows, effortless brows. Eye Colors of peaches, gold, rose gold and earthy tones. Bright corals, fushias, pinks on the lips. You just have to find the right shade. Graphic Liquid liner is also big. Fresh glowing skin is always timeless. People are really into to Green beauty. Technology is improving so there are great Indie brands emerging. Long lashes are always trending. Luckily for me, lashes will always be in fashion. I create my own line of custom eco-friendly vegan luxury faux eyelashes!
Q: Do you see common pitfalls women fall into with their makeup?
A: People get stuck doing the same lip color for many years. It can tend to date people. Chances are if you are wearing the same lipstick you did 10 years ago its washing you out or making you look older. Women are still trying to copy what they see in youtube videos, pinterest and instagram. The overly done “Instagram eyebrows” overly filled in and you can "see product in them" like you spent an hour on one eyebrow. Give me a break! ...and contouring is so overdone. That's not real life people... If you don’t update your techniques or colors every few years you get stuck in ruts.
Q: What do you cover in your one on one makeup lessons?
A: They’re personalized classes. I consult with the client and see what their current makeup system is, review the products and tools in their makeup bag. We go through an entire step-by-step application with a tutorial. We apply the makeup together. I’ll show them how to do their eyebrows, perfect their ‘everyday face’ and jazz it up for evening, or how to shop for proper colors for your skin tone, for example.
Q: What’s the most unusual occasion people get their makeup done for?
A: Funerals. People can get their makeup done to go to a funeral. To me it makes total sense. Im happy to be there when they can’t deal.
I’ve had dance recitals, pageants, fitness competitions, photo shoots, commercials, baptisms & births. I even have a client that wants me to do her makeup for her memorial service when she goes. That is such an honor! I've gone to the hospital to do a client's eyebrows before she had her birth photos done. My brow clients don't mess around. Literally, any time people are going out or be photographed, they want to get their makeup done. I appreciate them as much as they appreciate me. For my clients, I am like their Robin to their Batman. They win the day!
FUN FACT: I also did the first wedding in space. Literally. The bride was here on watch though, at NASA. Her Russian Cosmonaut groom was on the international space station and we're married by proxy. Google it! It's amazing. I still keep in touch with them to this day.
Q: What are you trying to achieve when doing bridal makeup?
A: For most of our clients, I specialize in soft glam, which means they look flawless and polished but still look like the best version of themselves with a modern flare. I am really lucky I don't ever have to deal with Bridzillas. My goal in doing bridal makeup is to have the bride feel confident. I don't do the exact look on every single client or matchy-match her wedding. It also has to last 14 to 16 hours. We want the makeup to be kiss-proof, sweat-proof and tear-proof. It also has to translate properly onto the camera and in real life. I just discovered a Maybelline lip color that I am trying to recreate with my lab. It stays on for like, 2 days!
My clients & brides appreciate my professionalism, expertise and value the experience I offer. I also have wonderful processes that have taken me years to perfect so the bride is getting value and a true luxury experience overall and it feels good charge and be paid what your worth. You are charging for a premium service on an important day. They're paying you for your time, experience and GUARANTEE they're going to look their absolute best on that big day no matter what.
Q: Can you help someone with special concerns?
A: We can help someone with colour correction, to even out and neutralize discoloration on the skin. When it comes to texture, makeup doesn’t necessarily improve that But we work with experts in dermatology. Airbrush is nice for creating flawless skin, especially on oily skin in this hot humid climate. I get a lot of clients with I affectionately call “project brows” that have been over waxed over the years. I have been called the “Brow Conservationist” before which I love. I have different techniques to bring the brows back. A tried and true secret is Revitabrow. I learned that a million years ago from a dear friend and mentor Maribeth Madron from our days at Laura Mericer together. Follow her @mbmadron on Instagram
Q: What is airbrush?
A: We apply makeup to skin with a compressor. It’s a light mist of air that pushes foundation through a gun. It applies sheer layers of coverage that's buildable, so it looks very seamless And ultra long wearing. Many of our clients love it. It can even cover a tattoo or be used to cover hands or body. I explain it to clients like it's the gel nail polish of foundations. It doesn't flex, disappear or absorb into skin like traditional makeup. If a client tells me they have had it before and didn't like it, it wasn't correctly applied.
Q: What’s the biggest challenge in doing someone’s makeup?
A: This job requires getting the job done on time and perfect no matter what. Being calm as a cucumber and staying zen no matter how hectic your day has been before your appointment together. When it's go time, it's all about the client. It can be very stressful but we've master the art in making it look easy. The true professional can help an every day women look her absolute best. I love a great challenge so that gives me joy to find one.
I’ve been doing makeup for so long; but still love to learn. I get a lot of people asking me questions about the latest vlogger or beauty youtuber. I often have to untrain them on what they saw or often the products that they bought are not correct for them personally. A lot of images they see on social media aren’t natural. It’s not real. There’s been so much post-editing done. Sometimes people are so eager to reinvent the wheel or create some new crazy idea that's never been done to be original, it kills me.
Q: How much time should a woman spend on her makeup at home?
A: Anyone can learn to do a daytime makeup in 10 to 15 minutes. For events, we spend an hour. But I can customize any beauty regimen for anyone's time frame.
Over the years, I've learned from experience that many people want to look great with the least amount of time and products so I only show them what they need. Why would I recommend a million steps each day when I do my own in 10-15 tops.
For photos and special events, it pays to hire a professional.
Q: Why do you think you've stayed so in demand all these years?
A: Houston is a wonderful place to run a business The city loves supporting entrepreneurs. I love working in the cosmetic industry. I learned from the best women in the world. I love what I do everyday and it's my passion . I’ve put so many years and my heart, blood sweat and tears into my job, and I absolutely love what I do. I try to pass the energy of what I do on to the clients. I have always celebrated our industry instead of treated others with competition.. Because when one succeeds, we all succeed
I always run on time and respect others time. My clients feel like they are the most important person in the world no matter who they are & I go above and beyond as well as excellent customer service.
I wouldn't be here today without a loyal referring clientele. Google somehow sends me the perfect clients and we always click really well. The magic algorithms that took me 25+ years to get! NEVER paid to have reviews or anything like that. All organic.
Q: Is there anything you’d like to add?
A: I’d encourage women, especially young women, to view makeup not only as a tool for beauty, but it's a fun way to be an entrepreneur and make a lot of money doing what you love. Making women feel great about themselves will always be in style. It will be relevant no matter what the economy is doing. It's a respectable career that we do to make a beautiful living!
It's also not a side-hustle. This is a career worth looking into. I learned very early that It can be the keys to your financial future. There are also many avenues of the cosmetic industry too. If you want to be a lawyer, consider a lawyer that helps in intellectual property, copyrights, patents or PR in cosmetics. If you want to be a scientist, consider a cosmetic scientist creating the latest and greatest formulas in a lab. If you're into business, get your MBA in business management and be a cosmetic CEO. An architect or graphic designer can create gorgeous tester units or packaging & branding. If you like nursing, consider a cosmetic nurse that can do treatments, botox and lasers. You can also travel the world sourcing the most exotic ingredients. To me the possibilities are endless!
Aubrie Layne has been a professional makeup artist for over 25 years. She studied under the help of Laura Mercier and Co-founder of Laura Mercier Cosmetics Janet Gurwitch. She calls Houston home where her line Lucky Cat Beauty Vegan Faux Lashes and Cosmetics line can be found on her website or in her studio. Shes sees clients by appointment Tuesday thru Saturdays. Book online at luckycatbeauty.com or HERE More information can be found at luckycatbeauty.com This link may contain affiliate links of Aubries favorite products. Follow her on Instagram