The Makeup Artists Choice

A beauty/lifestyle blog By Kate Emma




STARTING A BLOG

Let’s start with the basics. 

Choose A Platform

The most important choice of all. When I first started out I didn’t have 13,4223 choices of blog hosting websites to choose from, but you do. And whatever decision you choose, just bare in mind  you’re going to be stuck with it. Unless you’re really computer savvy or you can pay someone to move your blog.
So make this choice wisely.
 The two main sites people tend to choose from when creating a blog are Blogger or WordPress.
 I’m a Blogger blog blogger (HUH!), but I often regret this decision as WordPress is generally the blogger favourite because - once you get the hang of it - it can be amazing. Getting the hang of it can be a bit daunting though, but there is many a fab posts out there guiding the way.
There are also a lot hidden costs that come with being on WordPress, so it’s definitely something to do a little research on before you fully commit.

Blogger is the old school bloggers choice, It's what most of the 'big bloggers' from years ago started out on as it was free and simple to use. However Blogger has had its own issues, such as shutting google reader down (am still fussed about this), and it doesn't have as many options to customise your blog as wordpress.

  What Do You Want To Blog About?
Do you want to be a fashion blogger, a food blogger, a beauty blogger, a fitness blogger, a lifestyle blogger (I could go on for a while). 
You can choose anything to blog about, as long as it’s something that you’re going to want to write continuously about.
To make your mark upon the blogging world you need to be asking yourself, what is it that you’re bringing to the table, that people are going to want to read, that differs you from the rest. 
The market is currently saturated with bloggers all trying to be seen and heard, so what can you do that will make you stick out from the crowd?
Do your Research.
 Look at other bloggers that are currently writing about what you want to blog about. Those who are at the top of their game, what is it that they are doing? Take inspiration but don’t copy.

CHOOSING YOUR DOMAIN
I wish that I had purchased a domain when I first started all those years ago, GAH. You want your brand name to be along the same lines as your blog, so for example my blog is called
The Makeup Artist's Choice
And my domain is

You see what I did there.

Have a Google around first before you commit to a blog name, as someone may have already snapped up the domain name of your choice. And that means back to the drawing board.

So how do you get a domain?
This process really isn’t hard or scary at all. Once you’ve found your brand domain just head on over to a domain website and purchase it from there. I use Godaddy as they were the cheapest at the time, costing under a tenner for a year.
Just remember to renew your domain each year, otherwise all your hard work could get lost!

SET UP SOCIAL MEDIA
I know this seems a bit of a jump from the last step, but once you have your domain name, you want to try and get all your social media handles the same name, which is actually harder than you would think. You really want to do this though as making yourself easier to find across all platforms works wonders for your blog.
Mine for example is @theMUAchoice

SET UP GOOGLE ANALYTICS
I’m not going to bore you with this too much right now, but it’s essential to set this up. And once you get the hang of it, you may actually find it quite (do I dare say) exciting!?
 Google Analytics’ is basically the big brother of your blog, he has got your back and can tell you just what everyone is doing on your site. EVERYTHING.
Once you’ve got your domain name set up and running, you can head on over to google analytics, and they will give you the set by step guide on how to install it.


PRETTY UP YOUR WEBSITE
Now for the fun part. You have full creative control here on how you want your little space to look. Have a play around with settings and widgets and create something your proud of. Remember though, Rome wasn't built in a day, so if your website isn’t exactly how you want it to look don’t be disheartened!
Pipdig are a great website for buying some custom templates, but if they are a little to ££ have a snoop around Etsy. There is some great smaller website designers on the site selling some fab templates for less than a tenner.
Also remember to make your website mobile-friendly.
Google doesn’t take to kindly to websites that aren’t optimised for mobiles. If you have pre-bought your template, then its best to check with the designer to find out if it is already, otherwise your have to manually do this yourself.
You can check to see if your site is mobile friendly here.


FIRST POST
So you’re all up and running and raring to go. And so you should be! You’re a officially a blog owner. Give yourself a big pat on the back, and dont forgot to leave me the link to it below! 




facial tanner


Crystal Clear Skincare Beach Glow Tan Drops, do everything you want them to do when it comes to facial tanning.
Their subtle, Streak-free and they give a glorious 'natural' glow to the skin.
You know the 'I've been eating my ten a day and never drinking all the wine, and I religiously remover every scrap of makeup thats on my face before bed because I'm a good girl' kinda skin.

Something I'am definitly not familiar with LOL.

The biggest selling point of this serum, is the fact you can pop it into your existing skincare routine; you simply just add a few drops into your usual face cream/night cream and Bob's your uncle, you've upgraded your existing moisturiser into a facial tanner, without upsetting your skin.

Go you!

By adding just two to three drops of this serum to your chosen moisturiser, your achieve a lovely skin kissed glow or, if like myself your not afraid of looking like Dale Winston you can add a few more drops to give you a full on 'Ive spent a week in the Maldives'.

The serum leaves behind no fake tan smell, or stickiness, so I've been applying it in the morning (Fake tan + pillow cases = No No.) underneath my makeup, then when it comes to the end of the day, and I remove my makeup my skin looks all fresh and glowy. Meaning that I dont need to wear as much foundation the next day and can pretend I'am naturally this blessed.

I have a normal to dry skin, and usually if I apply a fake tan to my face it sucks the life out of my skin, and I tend to look more prune like then  radiant goddess. This serum however, actually helps to moisturise my face, leaving no tight feeling at all, only soft supple skin. 
You can grab your glow tan drops from Marks and Sparks (Spencers) or online at the Crystal Clear website here.

*No more looking like a floating head for Kate!



*You know, when your face doesn't match the colour of your body and it looks like a separate entity? When your body's a NC40 and your face is  a NW15. That is what I call, floating head. Ok... Its not actually a floating head.. Ill stop now.



This is  PR sample, but all thoughts, feelings, words etc etc are my own.
I've been blogging for seven years now, not always consistently, or routinely, but still for seven years. I've shown this blog more commitment than I have a lot of other things in my life, and the fact that I'm sat here today, typing away, makes me impressed with myself. 
Well done me. 

So for the seven years I've been blogging, here's my seven mistakes that I see more often than not.


blogging tips

1 - Blogging For All The Wrong Reasons


If you have chosen to start blogging because; 
A - So and so are carrying around designer handbags, so they must be on ££££ and you want a piece of that.
B - ALL THE FREE STUFF
C - You fancy being the next Instafamous/blogstar/influencer
D - All of the above
Then I hate to say this but, you probably shouldn't be doing it. Blogging is a outlet for you, it's your own little space on the interweb thats reserved solely for you. Not for material possessions or money or fame. Sure use them above points to give you motivation, but if you set out to blog only for these reasons then its most likely not gonna happen. 
Soz.
There is no get rich quick scheme to blogging, and for the first few weeks/months/years your put a lot more into your blog then you will get back out of it.


2 - Not Fully Using Social Media

I Am the worst for this. I completely ignored Pinterest for too long, but now, even with my teeny tiny following I notice people coming though off of my pins. YAY. All it takes is for one follower to repin your pin to their follows and a whole chain reaction can take place. 
Now Instagram is a pain in bum. For every Eight new followers, ten leave. Don't fret though! We are all in the same Titanic shaped boat. Consistency is what I think is key here. Uploading once a day keeps new followers trickling in, whilst keeping your old ones satisfied. If your going to post only once a week, you really won't see any progression. Trust me on this one. Make use of hashtags as well, have a nosey at what hashtags people are using that are uploading similar photos to you, and try to find a instagram comment pod to join for maximum Insta engagement.
Twitter is my favorite social media outlet. You can quickly find people who blog in the same genre as you, and the chats are a great way to find some new blogging friends, #WOO. I get a good amount of traffic coming though from Twitter too. 
Stumbleupon, Facebook, and Snapchat, are great social media sites too. Just remember to regularly update everything with your new post. Sharing something takes seconds, and it can bring a bunch of new readers though to your blog. Which leads me to my next point...

3 Don't Get Involved In The Dramas

Watch from afar, but try not to get yourself involved. 
I see so much of this (especially on Twitter) and personally I can't help but think it just makes you look like a  shitty person. Bad mouthing brands and other bloggers, not only makes you look hella unprofessional, but could also completely burn bridges with people who may want to work with you in the future. Think of your blog as your brand/company. Do you really want it associated with that? 

4 Saying Yes To Everything

I know in the beginning it's hard to say no to anything that gets offered your way, but remember your personal style. I've recently transitioned into more of a makeup/lifestyle/fashion blog, as after seven years of only talking about makeup I wanted to open more doors for myself, however if I was offered the chance to review nappies for £200 I would still have to say no. As nice as the money seems, it wouldnt fit with my style of blog.When offered sponsored posts or PR gifts I think its always wise to ask yourself 
'Would I go out and buy myself this to review?' 
Your readers will respect you more for it. 

5 Thinking your The Shiz

If someone takes time to comment on your blog, comment back! 
If someone tweets you a question, try and answer it.
If someone leaves a lovely Instagram comment, thank them.
There is nothing worse then a blogger who thinks they are too big for their Chanel boots. We all complain when the blogger that we knew and loved, who suddenly hit the big time, now ignores the people who they were once blogging friends with. Don't be that person. No matter how big or small your blog or social following is, remember engagement is everything.Otherwise your essentially just talking to yourself. 

6 Blog Layout

So you've got your dream layout, and it's looking all pretty and good. But have you looked at it from a users point of view? 
Having social Media icons on your page clear as day is a must, and I dont want to have to scroll though a whole webiste to find a way to follow your blog. Make sure your blog is user friendly first, nothing makes people click off quicker then when finding their way around your site becomes hard work. 

7 - Buy a Domain 

How I  wish all them years ago, when I first started blogging that I had purchased my own domain. Not only does it look more professional, but it is essential for MOZ to rank your DA (domain authority) which then in turn predicts how well your site ranks on a search engine from the scale of 1-100.
 There is many things SEO wise that you can do to help improve your DA score, and while we dont have any solid guidelines on how to do this just yet. I believe that owning your domain name for a lengthy period of time, helps to improve Google's trust thereby impacting on your MOZ score.  
Above all else though, have fun with your blog. and be proud of what you've created. 





I have always been complimented on my skin. Working on a makeup counter meant I always had customers asking me to make their skin look like my skin. 

It's a real compliment. 

Due to good genetics and a solid skincare routine, I've never had to many issues which my skin. Its fairly even and with the amount of highlight I pack on. it always looks dewy despite it being on the slightly drier side. 

However, I have some slightly bigger pores around my nose area, two small scars from nose piercings, and I get the odd random period spot that tends to either locate itself in the middle of my eyebrows, or it creates its own civilization on my chin. 
Not Edited

And I'm totally fine with this.
 Its normal. 

I have worked on young girls to mature ladies and nine times out of ten they want flawless skin. 
Who doesn't!
 Although now I get presented with pictures of how they want their skin to look. Usually Instagram or pinterest images of stunningly beautiful girls with skin to make the angels cry.

Stunningly beautiful smoothed and blurred perfected skin. 

My clients dont know this, nor do I expect them too!
 But how do you tell your fourteen year old client that her idolised beauty guru does not achieve her perfect skin though the art of her makeup application skills, or a certain product that the said beauty guru has raved about.



 But yet though filters applied so cleverly that is even hard for a professional to see. 

I see so much of this on Instagram  its a little heartbreaking.

Remember those ads that use to not disclose using lash inserts on their new 'Super Lash' mascara? How everyone protested it was false advertisement and dishonest of the brand?
slightly edited makeup
Edited
Now we, that very same public, are no better. 

There will always be magazines over editing models, I dont doubt anything will ever change that. 
But should we be following suit? 
Editing is a skill, and if you can photoshop yourself into looking like the next Gisele, be proud of it! No amount of editing will ever do that for me. 


But if you are photographing yourself to show off your new amazing foundation, then applying the smooth filter over the top and a touch of blur around here, and not disclosing it. 
Then you are no better then any magazine that has stretched their model because they dont like her hips being curvier than a stick.  

The bar that we are setting for ourselves has become so unrealistic, that its no wonder why we see these young girls, with a face full of makeup. 

The law now says #ad must be disclosed. Maybe its time for #filter to be too. 



#fliter
Edited









the best highlighters

I remember a time when I didnt use to highlight. Well at least not to the extent that we do now. Back in the day I would give myself maybe a little touch of highlight to my cheekbone (if I remembered) and that would be my glow done. 
These days cheekbones, lips, foreheads, chins and even noses get it. I truly believe in the years to come when whatever civilization lives on earth, they will genuinely think we evolved into shiny skinned beings. 

And I'm totally down with that.

I'm obsessed with glow, dew, sheen, shine.
 You name it I want it.
 Preferably all over my face
.
 So at this moment at time, my highlighters have a designated draw, A WHOLE DRAW, and before my draw gives up the ghost and I have to part with some of my nearest and dearest glowy babies. I thought I would share a few of my favorites with you ranging from drugstore dews to high end luxe. 





Makeup Revolution Strobe Highlighter in Gold Addict

This is a massively blatant dupe for Laura Mercier Highlighter collections, which are stunning. 
Of course it's not as buttery as LMs but it still does a fine job. The beautiful golden sheen will set any tan skin on fire this summer, making it look like you have glow coming out of your skin instead of shining on it. 
Tanned to dark skinned ladies will find this best.

L'oreal True Match Highlight Liquid Glow Illuminator.

I have spoke about this highlighter before (blatant plug right here) and sang its praises. Used as a all over base it will give you a lovely sheen to the skin and built up in the places you want to highlight it will really pack a punch. 
If I'm looking to bring the sailors home, I usually use this cream as a base highlight then apply a powder over the top and then proceed to stand on a cliff edge and shine my highlight for miles around.
Best for paler skinned girls.

MAC Pearl Cream Colour Base.

I dont use this enough, but when I do I like to apply it,
ALL OVER MY FACE
Pearl is one of those highlighters that you can apply anywhere. It gives such a soft dewy look to the skin that I do often wonder why I dont use it more. It makes a great eyeshadow, fantastic highlight, and will seriously last you to the end of time. 
I cannot tell you how long I've had mine for as it will be quite embarrassing.
I love this on all skin tones but if you are very dark be careful it doesn't make you look ashy.

MAC Mineralised Skinfinish in Soft and Gentle

One of the original highlighters for me. 
When I'm not fake tanned and rocking my natural pale face, this gives me The Glow whilst brightening up my face with its soft pinky tones. This paired with l'oreal True Match Highlight is a force of glow to be reckoned with.
One for the Pale Faced ladies.

Anastasia Beverly Hills That Glow Kit

I almost didnt want to put this here, as it's so hyped up that it really doesn't need me to boost its ego. But I cannot deny that this little guys  colours are super pretty, pigmented and long lasting. 
The price makes me gag a little though, and these are not the be all end all highlighters. 
If you have the money, do it. You won't be disappointed. 
If you dont though, dont sweat it, there's some great dupes for this around the interwebs.  
Golden goddess and dark skinned queens rock this palette well. 
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