Photography Tips for MUAs

Are you struggling with taking great photos of your clients and wondering how these other artists are capturing such great images? Here are a few quick tips you can try today!

1. LIGHTING. I know all caps insinuates that I'm yelling, but it's because I am. Lighting is KEY for getting great photos and having your makeup translate correctly. Natural light is best. Position your client directly in front of a window if possible with no direct light shining on them. If there are no windows (isn't this the worst??), then you absolutely need to invest in a light. When using a light, make sure it is positioned directly in front of the clients face- not above or below to avoid shadows. I personally use Glamcor's Multimedia Extreme light; however, there are tons of lighting options out there. Another great lighting system is The Makeup Light. Do your research, and find out what suits you best.

2. Clean your lens. This may seem like a simple one, but more often that not your pictures aren't clear because your lens is dirty. This could even just be a fingerprint! Every time before I take a photo, I wipe off the lens on my shirt and BAM. Game changer.

3. Zoom in. The iPhone in particular has a fish eye effect and can distort the image. Before taking the picture, zoom in to frame the picture however you choose. Also, be sure to tap the client's face to make sure it's focused.

That's it! Apply these 3 tips next time and see your picture game get stronger! Want to know more? Stay tuned for a huge announcement coming in the next couple weeks where you can learn this plus much MUCH more!

Brianna Barnes

This wedding goes down as one of my absolute favorites! Not only is Brianna a joy to work with, but she had amazing vendors who made her vision truly come to life! Check out all of her gorgeous details!

Check out these amazing vendors who helped it all come together!

New York, New York

Whew!! I wasn't in New York long, but it sure felt like I was there a week. I was SO busy seeing friends, taking my class, and eating WAY too much food. I ALSO got to stay with my USA Pageant sister Miss New Jersey 2008, Tiffany Andrade DiCarlo!! She was 2nd runner up and still looks completely amazing. However, I think she forgot that I'm originally from Mississippi and didn't adequately inform me of what a "brunch" in New York can entail. She mentioned going to a "boozy brunch", which I figured would consist of some mimosas and white wine. Much to my surprise, we arrived to the "brunch" at about 3:30 and there was a line outside the door. That should have been my first red flag. When we walked in, this is what I saw.


This is not a normal Mississippi/Virginia brunch. All day I was excited by the thought of bacon, waffles, muffins, and perhaps a cold mimosa. Nevertheless, after a side of $10 fries, I joined in the fun!


After a LONG night (the brunch/bar/restaurant (?) closed at 6:30) we went home to Tiffany's apartment and I had a very nice relaxing night with Tiffany and her husband's dog, Charlie. I needed a good night's rest for my class the next day!

When I walked into the Kett studio, I was immediately greeted by the owner and creator of Kett Cosmetics, Sheila McKenna. I was so excited that SHE was the one teaching the class! Who better to learn from than the woman who MADE the makeup??

Not only was she teaching the class, but we only had 5 people! I received so much personal instruction! Since Kett Cosmetics was the makeup sponsor of Miss USA in 2008, we had so much fun catching up and talking about the pageant. It was interesting to hear about her Miss Universe experience, too. Apparently, they had over 70 contestants and only had 17 minutes to do each girl!! That's crazy!! It's equally amazing how beautiful the girls looked. It just goes to show you that airbrush makeup can be applied quickly and beautifully.


We focused on honing our skills on color theory, creating 3D faces by contouring and highlighting, and airbrush eyeshadow. The most impressive thing we learned about was how different makeup looks on an HD camera! Sheila demonstrated an airbrush application in front of a live HD camera, and it's amazing how different it looks on and off camera. One of the most challenging parts of class was when Sheila gave us a picture of a woman with no shape to her face. She wanted us to make her look 3D!


We got up close and personal to watch her demonstrate. It's amazing what adding 3D shapes to a blank, flat piece of paper can do. I was going to show you mine, but I need to practice a few more ;) Airbrush makeup on an actual face with 3D shapes is much easier than flat paper!! 

Being taught by Shelia McKenna was incredible, and I can't wait to work with her again in May! However, after a long day, I was excited to meet up with some of my USA Pageant sisters for dinner!! I am so proud of my USA class. These girls are successful, beautiful inside and out, charitable, hard working, and true women. I had a cozy Italian dinner with Miss Indiana 2008, Brittany Mason, and Miss Connecticut 2008, Jacqueline Honulik. I can't believe it had been 4 years since I had seen them, but we chatted it up like it had only been days :) It's crazy how only 2 1/2 weeks can bring girls so close together. I miss you girls and can't wait to see you soon!


All in all, I had a GREAT time visiting New York City and can't wait to go back; however, it just goes to show me how much of a southern girl I am. I was glad to get back to feeling like I wasn't going to die while driving down the street and only paying $6 for a burger. Until next time New York!!

Stay tuned for my next adventure in the big city :)

New York... Here I come!!

It's that time again for another Kett Cosmetics airbrush class!! I couldn't be more excited. I think it is vitally important for people in the beauty industry to stay on top of current trends and to "brush" up on some skills! It also gives me a chance to meet some new people who love airbrush just as much as I do. But who are we kidding here... who would pass up a chance to go to New York!!

Not ONLY do I get to go play with airbrush makeup, but I ALSO get to see my long lost pageant sister Miss New Jersey USA 2008, Tiffany Andrade DiCarlo!! I can't believe it's been four years since the last time I saw her! I might even get lucky and get to see some of my other USA girls. Cross your fingers! 

I'll be keeping everyone updated on my trip, so stay posted! Follow me on Twitter @BlushTones_Leah to stay up to date on what's going on!

Grand Opening!!

I am so excited that BlushTones is finally open! I have been working on this for quite some time now! I can't wait to get started and show everyone the word that I have been doing.

Please check out my partner's website! Stephanie Rose is an absolutely amazing hair stylist, and the only one I trust to touch my hair! We have a great package deal that is sure to please any bride :) 

Keep posted for more exciting news!