The Makeup Artists Choice

A beauty/lifestyle blog By Kate Emma

In all my years of writing on my little corner of the internet, I don't think I've ever been quite as excited as I am to write this post.
A couple of months ago, I was contacted by the lovely girls from over at The Makeup Armoury with the opportunity to try some of the fantastic products they stock. 
The Makeup Army for a working MUA (or any makeup enthusiastic) is the equivalent of a sweet shop for a small child, with brands such as Makeup Forever, Ardell and Ben Nye to name a though, its a one-stop destination for all things an MUA needs, and just following the ,Makeup Armoury on Instagram is a real treat if your into prosthetics and behind the scenes work.
What makes this shop a little bit extra special though, is the owner is a working makeup artist herself, and one of the hottest industry names right now.
Jan Sewell has an impressive CV behind her and is currently working on the highly anticipated Bohemian Rhapsody feature-length starring the amazingly talented Rami Malek. 
It's needless to say that I cannot wait for that film!
Now I can sing Jans praises for her all day every day, but she was kind enough to allow me to interview her (fangirl moment of my life!), so instead of me rambling along, I`ll let Mrs Sewell tell you all about her career and favourite products herself...

You've had such an amazing career,  and just glancing through your IMDb list shows your love of your job as it seems you have worked nonstop for two decades! What made you want to become a makeup artist?

I truly feel very lucky to be a film make-up, hair and prosthetic artist.
I love my job more now than ever, even though it has changed and become more demanding as the film industry becomes digital and we now shoot on 4K.
I originally wanted to be an interior designer and secured a place at The London College of Furniture, but could not secure a grant…. which at the time I was so disappointed, but in hindsight I may not have been inspired while watching a program on the BBC called ‘I Claudius’ starring Derek Jacob, John Hurt and Sian Phillips.
It was a history of the Roman Empire and had ageing make up on all the main character.
I remember watching it and thinking Wow! someone does that as a job.
I waited for the credits to roll and saw that there was a makeup department at the BBC, I looked up the switchboard number and I rang them the next morning.
To my utter surprise when I asked for the make up department, they put me through.
They took my details and told me the next time they had a make up school starting, they would call me. 
They sent out a form to me with all the qualifications I needed.
I went to night school to take a hairdressing course and also to take ‘A’ level English.
True to their word I was called and successful at the interview, even way back then 200 applicants applied for 12 places on the course.
I then trained and worked for the BBC for 15 years… I believe it was the best training ground at that time.

What is your favourite type of makeup to do? Beauty, special effects, period?

I adore all makeup, hair, wigs and prosthetics, whatever it takes to create a character that is written on the page of a film script.
I love creating characters, I love looking through the camera to see the effect it has on my make up.
Whether it is period production, which may mean there is more hair work or an action movie with lots of blood work, I enjoy it all.

What for you has been the biggest highlight of your career so far?

I have been fortunate to have had a few highlights to my career, so far.
Working on The Theory of Everything where my work on Eddie Redmayne was recognised, as was my work with Eddie on The Danish Girl.
Also the most amazing experience on the film Everest, travelling to Nepal and filming just under base camp on Everest.

 And lastly, what three products would you recommend every new artist to have in their kit when starting out? 

The three products I would recommend are…. 
·         The Grand Palette from Le Maquillage, it is a bees wax based make up that looks beautiful on film and digital, can also be used on prosthetics.
this palette is a little expensive, but if you are on a budget, I have put together a smaller palette of 6 foundation colours that will allow you to make up skin tones from very pale to the Arabic skin tone which can have quite a bit of green tone.
·         Skin Illustrator Camouflage palette by PPI.
This palette will let you cover tattoo’s, something we have to do more and more these days and also make up prosthetic pieces.
Again if you are on a budget they have the smaller 'on set signature' palettes in lots of different colours.
·         Thirdly, a good set of makeup brushes.
Bdellium brushes are lovely, affordable and have a huge range from SFX brush sets to individual brushes which allow you to grow you collect slowly.

 All of the above can be bought at the PRO store that I’m a Director of,,  and they give student discount too!

Working out and a nine to five do not tend to go hand in hand. 
Trying to get any speck of motivation after a long hard day at the office is about as likey as Tom Hardy finally realising his undying love for me.
Not completely inpossible (PAH!) but most likey not to happen.
So todays all about me sharing my top tps with you, and how to haul your bitt outta bed.

under armour

No.1 – Prep to Rep

Having your workout gear ready and waiting for you when you rise is essential. Its really all about organised timings when it comes to working out in the mornings, and any part of your getting to the gym routine that can be done the night before will really help to shave down those minutes. 

Gym Bag
Work bag

Prep untill you cannot prep anymore, then your ready!

No. 2 – The Early Bird Catchs the Protein Shake

I know how inviting your bed is when its cold and dark outside, but getting up when the little birds are singing their morning delights is a routine that eventually your be gratful for.
Just make sure you dont have a alarm colock that you dread the sound of though!

2 - Pump Yo-self Up

Funny how we can be at our most tiredess just after weve had a full nights kip.
 I for one always find it a bit of a struggle to motivate myself to open the front door and confront the elements of the morning.
So do what you need to do, to hurl yourself out the front door, wether thats having a strong coffee, or doing ten jumping jacks. Once your ready and raring to go, the outside world wont seem quite as unappealing. 

under armour

4 - Be Smug

Youve earned it! 
Whilst most are snoozing the morning away, youve been preductive and now no longer have to dread hitting the gym after work, or feeling guilty about eating that three oclockc biscuit.  
It really does only take you a few weeks to get your body into the habit of waking early, and you really will be forever gratful for it.

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Sunday morning...
 Does any other morning feel quite so good? Sunday mornings were made for lazying in bed and not feeling guilty. Long lay inns and cups of endless tea in bed.
 Complete and utter bliss.
Do you ever get that little niggle at the back of your mind though, interrupting your peaceful Sunday morning? That little thought of 'Monday morning is coming'. 
I know I do, and although I try not to let it ruin my day, I still can help but feel the dread of a Monday morning descending down upon me.
So now, after the relaxation of my lazy morning, I like to spend The rest of my Sunday preparing for the week ahead and I thought I would share with you my Sunday routine on prepping for that Monday morning.

Monday Morning Motivation

  Set Your Goals

Big, small, long term, short term. Set them.Try starting with the week ahead. Give yourself one goal to achieve each day, whether it's clearing out your email inbox (That gives me the fear!) or sending a text to a friend that you've been meaning to for a while. Which leads me on to my next point of....


How I love a list. I have lists for everything. Daily chore lists, weekly achievement lists, and a whole notebook of goal lists.
 In this day of technology our phones seem to dominate our lives, but actually putting pen to paper, and then being able to put a nice big tick next to our achievement is a lot more satisfying than simply pressing the phone screen. 
Taking a little time out on a Sunday evening to write your lists, will leave you not only feeling more organised but also ensures your less likely to forget that important thing that you've been meaning to do!

Monday Morning Motivation
  Dress Your Best
It's Funny how clothes can set our mood. Donning a pair of sassy heels makes us feel like we could conquer the world and I always feel more motivated in the morning if I know I have something new and exciting to wear.
 Buying a new outfit for each day of the week is definitely not financially viable for me (one day!) so the next best thing I find is to go through your wardrobe and plan out your outfits for the working week. 
Being able to spend a little more time working out my outfits sometimes allows me to pair certain items with certain accessories that I would have usually thought of because of rushing around! 

Pamper Time

Sunday evenings are a great time to get your pamper on. 
Turning my bathroom into a luxury spa is one of my favourite pastimes.
 Face mask, hair mask, nails, tan.
 All of it sets me up for a good Monday morning, but if I'm feeling particularly fancy, heading down to my  local gym and spending a little me time in the spa is the perfect way to end the weekend.    

Monday Morning Motivation

Early Night

Do any of us really get enough sleep? 
Yet we all know what a fundamental part of life sleep is and we all know what happens if we get too little of it. 
For a long time, I was in the bad habit of going to bed super late, and then not waking up till late morning. Not only did this make me feel like I had wasted half the day away but my motivation for doing anything was massively diminished.Try tonight going to bit just that little bit earlier, and I promise you your Monday morning will be a whole lot easier.

Halloween, turning adults into children and children into literal monsters. 

I love Halloween, but as per usual, I tend to leave these things so last minute, that all the great costumes have gone and Amazon Prime can no longer guarantee I’m going to get my cat costume before All Hallows’ eve begins.

Clairol Color Crave Hair Make Up

So this year, instead of spending big on an outfit I’m only going to use once, I’ve decided to try and cut corners where I can. 
Clairol has just launched a whole new line of hair makeup, that you simply paint on your hair and wash out when you’ve finished your spooky fun.
 And I don't mean those questionable sachets we had back in the 90s that turned everyone's hair the same colour magenta no matter what.

I experimented with Shimmering Bronze and Shimmering Rose Gold, applying both the colours to my hair in random sections and then blow drying the colour in as recommended. 

Both the colours were super shimmery and hella messy, but I think that may be more to do with my application than the actual product itself. Even though these are washable colours, I recommend wearing old clothes and not your brand new under armour two-piece suit.... bah!

Clairol Color Crave Hair Make Up

With this huge range of colours, you could definitely create some great looks for Halloween, whether it’s a pretty fairy/unicorn look, or something a bit more spooky.
I love putting crazy colours in my hair, but absolutely hate the upkeep of them. 
Clairol's hair makeup definitely looks like that will be bridging the gap for me.

If there's one thing that I forget (on purpose) to do is; warming up before a workout and then cooling down.
 I don't tend to be as bad at warming up (I do, do some glute activation exercises, coming to a blog post near you soon!) but cooling down....
When I've finished my workout, I usually sprint for the exit doors, heading down into the stretch area sounds like something straight outta hell. 

I know, and I'm sure you know that by both warming up and cooling down, we are minimising our chances of hurting ourselves whilst working out and warding off the dreaded doms.

 Warming Up


Warming up is essential to our workouts, doing this prepares our muscles to be used in ways that we don't usually use them 24/7, and also helps to get the blood pumping around your body, which we all know is necessary. Getting that blood flowing thought o the muscles really helps to loosen them up and is a lot safer for you then from taking them to 0 to 10 in the space of seconds. 
You wouldn't put food in a cold oven and expect it to be cooked in the same amount of time as a fully heated over, so let's try not to do the same to our bodies.
A quick five-minute session of cardio (I don't mean intense cardio, I would leave the gym at this point) including some jogging on the spot or a minute of jumping jacks combined with some marching will really make a massive difference to your body.


My Warming up schedule -

Jogging/marching for one minute followed by one minute of jumping jacks. Repeat twice for four minutes.

 Cooling Down



The bit I struggle with the most.
 By the end of the workout, when the ending (and food) is in sight, the last thing I ever want to do is a stretch. But it really is so essential to creating those long lean muscles that we've been working so hard on.
Stretching out your muscles helps to bring that heart rate back down, and allows all that tension and stress to simply disappear from your body. Stretching is a great way of really focusing on your breathing (especially if like me, you take no notice of it) and gives you that five minutes peace and quiet.
Most the time I am rushing out of the gym, and I'm not quite sure why.

Allow yourself that time to just spend quietly with yourself, whilst at the same time releasing the stress away from your muscles.

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