Wednesday, 30 May 2018 15:37

On Trend and Inclusive: Makeup Looks to Serve a Diverse Clientele

Written by   Ellie Malmin

Wouldn’t it look strange to see someone working out in a gym wearing a long evening gown? Similarly, when it comes to makeup, there are many factors that must be considered when clients choose a look. For instance, just like with clothes, styles should be worn for the activity at hand. A professional might create several looks for a client and each would be different, depending on where the client is going and what he or she will be doing. The key is to identify how to use makeup for every occasion and every age.




Sanitary Makeup Practices


First, always recommend a good set of brushes and teach the importance of keeping them clean. Supplies may vary depending on what is carried at the spa and this is fine. Foundation brushes are great to use and should be cleansed after each person. Most clients do not engage in this practice. So, when selling them a foundation or concealing brush, emphasize the fact that they must be cleaned after every use to keep them from forming bacteria. When it comes to mascara, it is a good idea to sell the disposable mascara wands to use, instead of using what comes in the tube, to prevent bacteria. In addition, disposable sponges for the face are great for the same reason. Clients should also clean all other brushes after each use. With the new brush cleansers now available, there really is no excuse. Instruct clients to spray brush cleaner on a paper towel and wipe their brush back and forth several times. It really is up to professionals to teach proper makeup hygiene, which is an often forgotten habit.


The Consult


When teaching and applying makeup, a consultation is extremely important. It is imperative that a client gives clear direction regarding their desired look. Do they want a natural, bold, or colorful look? Get a feeling about the direction they are envisioning with their makeup. For example, two individuals – both in the same art class and instructed to draw a tree – may draw the tree very differently. One student may draw a tree with colorful leaves, while the other might draw a bare tree with lots of branches. This is why it is vital that the client communicates their desired look with clarity. In case they are finding it difficult to explain the look they are going for, it may help to suggest they go on social media and show pictures of their desired look. It may be easier to interpret and emulate, then.




When dealing with preteens, keep in mind that their youthful skin is different than that of a mature woman’s. Be sure that, when finished, they do not look like young adults wearing their mother’s lipstick. Use a clear mascara with nutrients in it and a clear eyebrow gel. Leave the skin natural or apply sunscreen (no tint). Make the lips sheer with a tiny frost of lip gloss that complements their skin tone. For eyeshadow, dust the eyes with a light to medium face powder. The finished look is a clean, natural appearance and perfect for this age.


Cheer Girls


Working with a cheerleading team is a huge business opportunity. Typically, the team has one look and it changes with each new season to go with their cheer outfits. The look usually consists of one to two colors of heavy, frosted eye shadows, followed by waterproof, heavy eyeliner and faux eyelashes, and finished with a bright lipstick and dark eyebrows. Good products to have on hand when working with this type of clientele are: foundation, powder, frosted glitter eye shadows, eyeliner, faux eyelashes, lipstick, and eyebrow gel.






With all the YouTube videos around these days, teenagers are being crafty and creating an edgy look far beyond their years. It often seems they know more than the professionals – or at least they think they do. When it comes to teenagers, they need to be encouraged to have a good, solid skin care routine. It is helpful to break teenagers into two categories: 13 to 16 and 16 to 19. Some 16-year-olds are advanced and can fall into either category.


Teenagers 13 to 16


Start with an oil-free, tinted moisturizer. Use a matte, medium powder to hollow out the cheek bones. Then, take a highlighting sheer frost or a light-pressed powder to highlight underneath the eyebrows, taking it high into the cheek bones. For dark eyelashes, apply clear mascara. If they are light, use dark brown. Take a medium to dark shadow with an angle brush and do a subtle shading in the crease. In the apples of the cheeks, apply a soft shimmer blush; then, finish with a nude gloss. Useful makeup products to have handy for these teenage clients are: tinted moisturizer, contouring matte medium pressed powder, highlighting sheer frost or light-pressed powder, clear gel mascara, clear eyebrow gel, medium to dark shadow for lining and shading, nude gloss, and soft shimmer blush.


Teenagers 16 to 19


Give these teenagers the newest fad. Experiment with eyeliners. It can be fun using them to reshape and define the eyes. Play with lid color to match their expression or mood. Shimmery colors and those with glitter are high priority, as well as high definition, contour, and highlight. Teenagers often love experimenting. When it comes to this group, they love Pinterest. So, use it as a resource. Let them pick out makeup looks and try to duplicate it. The best makeup products for this demographic are: foundation, an assortment of shadows, eyeliner, eyebrow gels, wax, powders, contour, highlight, multi-colored blushes, bronzer, lip stain, and mascara.


College Students


Young adults crave simplicity. They want a fresh look that does not take time or effort. A lot of college students are struggling for time and money. Start with an all-over face powder or mineral-loose powder. Use a shimmering highlighter, emphasizing their cheekbones and jaw line, and an eyeliner to define the eyes. Stick to an eye trio to keep things simple. If they are in a hurry, they can use one color just on the eyelid and the contour area, with eyeliner to define. Add a little eyebrow gel and top it off with mascara on the eyelashes.




Valuable products for college students include: all-over face powder, a shimmer highlighter, eyeliner, eye shadow trios, blush, lip stain, gloss, eyebrow gel, and mascara.


Workout and Outdoor Looks


These are no-nonsense looks. They can be achieved with simple services and products. Use a tinted moisturizer with sunscreen. Apply eyelash extensions or an eyelash lift if the client’s eyelashes are thick and long. Microblading can be done on eyebrows or an eyebrow gel can be used. Waterproof eyeliner or permanent eyeliner is best. Add bronzer on sun zones. A bronzer may be used as an eye contour, as well. Finish by applying a lip stain. Investing in such services as eyelash extensions or eyelash lifts and tint, microblading, and permanent eyeliner gives clients the flexibility of looking good with no maintenance. Emphasize the beauty of swimming, sweating, and being active outdoors while not having to worry about their makeup coming off. Services ideal for clients who workout or are frequently outdoors include: eyelash extensions or an eyelash lift and tint; microblading, henna, or eyebrow tint; and permanent eyeliner. Eyebrow gel, tinted moisturizer with sunscreen, lip stain, and bronzer that can be used as blush and eye contour may also be great products to suggest to this client.


Corporate Looks




The office is where makeup must stay on and look fresh all day. To begin, it is hard to beat good eyelash extensions. Once applied, they are beautiful and give such a polished appearance. To continue this look, start with a good primer. Two colors of foundation can be used to achieve a polished, professional look. Recommend a lighter foundation (usually two shades lighter than the client’s natural skin tone) to be applied all over, including under the eyes and over complete eye lids. Take a darker foundation (two shades darker then the client’s skin tone) and apply it in the T-zone area, blending so there are no sharp lines. Take a light powder and go over the lighter areas and use a medium powder to go over the T-zone, where the darker foundation was applied. Apply a soft, slightly-frosted blush just under the cheek bone up to the hair line and toward the apple of the cheek. Then, lightly dust the face with a soft bronzer. Keep eyes simple, using one light color from the eyelid to the eyebrow. Use a darker color for contour. An eyeliner can be used to define the shape of the eye. It can also be applied in the outer corner of the eyelid, fading into the contour of the eyelid, to create a shading effect. Finish the eye with a defined eyebrow. Lipstick should be a stain, so the client does not have to touch up, except for refreshing with a little gloss. Tools and services useful for a professional look are: eyelash extension application, primer, foundation, powder, frosted blush, bronzer, eyeshadow, lipstick or stain, clear gloss, and an eyebrow definer.


Quick Looks for Mothers




Mothers often come to the spa with little time for themselves. They welcome a no-hassle look that makes them appear well-rested. If she has great eyelashes, recommend an eyelash lift and tint. If not, do a natural set of eyelash extensions. This would require a little more maintenance but, on the other hand, she could get a little quiet time every two to three weeks. Recommend microblading for eyebrows or an eyebrow tint. If those options do not work for her, suggest a gel tint. Use a tinted moisturizer with a sunscreen bronzer or blush on the cheeks. Then, apply eyeliner to define the eyes and a lip stain with clear gloss to complete her look. Keep these makeup essentials on hand for this client: eyelash extensions and eyelash lift, microblading and eyebrow tint, tinted moisturizer with sunscreen, eyeliner, lip stain, and gloss.


Looks for Transitioning Trans Women




This can be a difficult time for this client. Compassion and understanding will be important. Transitioning transgender women may ask for more help than the average client. Consultation is the key to learn what type of look will make them feel confident as they are transitioning. Recommending a good primer is important. Teaching the technique of stibbling complexion products to cover facial hair is important, as well, as this will give the necessary coverage. Mask hollow eyes or dark circles by highlighting. Contouring and highlighting are key to shaping the face to be softer and more feminine. Contouring at the Adam’s apple will help to soften the neck area. Apply blush to achieve the look of high cheek bones. Groom and shape the eyebrows by defining an arch, which opens the eyes. Stick to nude lipstick shades or adjust the look depending on what they are going for. A few go-to products include: foundation, highlighter, contour, blush, eyebrow powder, and nude lip colors.


Looks for Transitioning Trans Men


If requested, create a five o’clock shadow by taking mascara and coating the facial hair. Use a dark brown shade that is waterproof. Make the eyebrows fuller with more of a boxy, square look. Products to have on hand are waterproof mascara and eyebrow tint.


Mature Women


For mature women whose skin may show more signs of aging, a softer, more basic look may be appropriate. Suggest eyelash extensions and place an emphasis on eyebrows. Enhance their color with tint or even suggest microblading. Highlight under the eyebrow with a light, matte powder. This type of client might have a lot of sun damage. Makeup should hide flaws while accentuating the client’s best features. Use a good primer and a foundation that has a beeswax base. This will not settle in lines. The molecules are too large, so they will lay on the surface and fuse together, filling in lines and creating a more youthful appearance. Use a contour to hollow cheeks out and diminish signs of the jowls. Highlight around the mouth by using undereye concealer all around the lips and blend into the lips. This will create a natural lip muscle, bringing a more youthful appearance around the mouth. Eyeshadows should be soft peach tones and eyeliner should be used to brighten. Blush should be light and soft. Use a lip stain to prevent bleeding and a sheer gloss on top. Recommend eyelash extensions and microblading. Keep primer, foundation, undereye concealer, blush, lip stain, and gloss on hand.


Women whose skin may have retained a smoother look, whether naturally or through spa treatments, may prefer a slightly altered look from the one above. Start with a shimmer primer all over, adding a light foundation on top. This will give a clean, translucent, youthful glow. Take a soft, cream blush working it into the apples of the cheeks. Aim for strong, shaped eyebrows and light eyelash extensions. Use eyeliner that is either blue-grey, for light eyes, or dark brown, for dark eyes. Stick to soft shadows on the eyes and a nice, rosy gloss for lips. Keep the following products in stock for this group: shimmer primer, foundation, soft, cream blush, eyebrow gel, eyeshadows, eyeliner, and lipstick.


Looks for Women of Color




Start with a sheer, frosted bronzing gel all over the face. To create a sultry eye look, use a medium to dark brown eye shadow on the eyelid, blending into the crease. Use a soft bronze under the eyebrow. Apply black eyeshadow in the outer corner of the eye, creating a “v” and blending into the crease. Use a black gel to line the eyes and then a dark chocolate on top, giving a controlled, close smudge. Under the dark chocolate liner, take a small, angled brush and use the same color used under the eyebrows just beneath the controlled smudge liner. Sheer, bronze gloss and faux eyelashes or extensions finishes this sultry, sexy look. A few must-haves to keep on hand are: dark shadows, frosted, sheer, bronze shadow, black gel eyeliner, and sheer, bronze gloss.


Makeup for "Manly Men"




The trend for today’s man is a rugged look. This can be accomplished with a bronzer applied all over, or to chisel the face, and shaded eyebrows that appear flat. Use a nude, matte lip conditioner. Also, a big craze with men are eyelash extensions. They are different than women’s extensions, however. Male eyelash extensions have less curl, are thinner in diameter, and are dark or medium brown with no high shine. The length mimics their own natural eyelash, framing the eyes and making the client’s eye color more dominant. Make sure to have bronzers and a matte, nude lip conditioner available to serve male clients.




One of the neatest things that professionals can give clients is a detailed tutorial of their makeup being applied. Set the products on the table in order. Filming while doing half of the face allows the client to replay and learn tips for home while the other half is being completed. Clients love this and show their friends, bringing in additional clients.


Allowing the client to play back the video and follow along in real time while the routine is being completed is an easy way to teach clients and sell products.


After finishing, consider adding some night time techniques, such as: more contouring in the crease; more of a smoky look; a more defined lip; highlighting with a shimmer highlighter; and a powder contour to chisel the cheek bone and jaw. This can also lead to more retail being sold.




Regardless of what type of client is being helped, communication is key. Understand his or her lifestyle. Get a good idea about the look he or she is trying to achieve. By doing so, professionals will be able to create appropriate, tailored looks for clients to match their age, style, and activities.


EllieMalminFounder of Lash Brow Makeup Academy, Ellie Malmin is celebrating her 40th year in the beauty industry. She is a co-founder of Anushka Spa, Salon & Cosmedical Center in West Palm Beach, Florida. Malmin has written several training manuals for leading brands and has developed training programs for numerous beauty companies. She travels the country as a public speaker. Her newest co-venture is an online continuing education course on eye and eyelash conditions and diseases. Malmin is releasing her product line, Lashologist Choice™.,, or YouTube channels: Lashologist choice, eeducates; Instagram: Elliemalminv; e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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