I'm now settled in my new home of Atlanta, GA and ready to take on a new world of clients and job. I am available for booking makeup, hair, fx makeup, body painting and more! I love doing a little bit of everything and prize my skill set on being extremely versatile. Atlanta makeup artist for hire. Georgia Peach now through and through!
So you want to airbrush and/or offer airbrush services to your clients. You've done some research, bought your equipment and now need product (click here for equipment review.) Yet you're overwhelmed with the choices out there. I have tried nearly them all! I use airbrush productions nearly every single job I do, as I specialize in airbrushing. Please take what you will from this Pro review and I hope you find your favorite product!
Water-based airbrush foundation might be my personal favorite. It's primary ingredient is aqua or water, hence water-based. True water-based foundation will dry down instantly unlike some brands which put silicone in their water-based foundations. These are not true water-based and will not perform how you want.
Kett Cosmetics Hydro Foundation - $30 35ml.
This is my long standing favorite water-based foundation due to it's incredible performance and natural skin finish quality. It's dries down instantly to the skin and has about a medium finish. Can be built up on coverage or sheered down with purified water.
- Dries instantly
- Fragrance free
- Lasts for full day shoots/event
- Water resistant
- Silicone free
- Not waterproof
- Not suitable for very oily skin
You'll want this entire line so I suggest getting the blushes, contours and highlighters as they all perform phenomenally on the skin, plus the colors are all gorgeous!
Silicone based airbrush foundation was really the first of all the foundations. Due to the fact that silicone dominates in the foundation industry, much to my disdain. I don't particularly enjoy working with silicone based products due to their performance issues. However there have been some great improvements in the airbrush field of silicone-based foundations.
Temptu Hydra Lock - $36 1oz.
This is the newest and best on the market in the variety of silicone-based products. Temptu pushes to continuously be the leader of airbrush makeup with their newest launch of performance silicone products. Most people know about the current S/B formula by Temptu. I will review that below since it's a popular product as well. This new formula is enriched with moisture retention properties which they claim will moisturize the skin 4x more than hyaluronic acid. They also claim is has a 24 hr wear (which i don't know why people are sleeping in their makeup again -_-) but a long wear is definitely beneficial for brides and event makeup. I really love the look and feel of this product. It's also ultra thin so it can be used with airbrush guns with .35mm needles.
- Very long-wear
- beautiful semi-matte finish
- easy to use in all guns
- cleans easily
- no dilution necessary
- Only available currently in sample sizes
- No available in blushes or contour colors as of yet
I love this line because of it's variety of color but I desperately want the blushes and contours to come out so I don't have to use two different formulas and guns for one client. You cannot mix silicone with water based, so you must either clean you gun out completely to switch to your blushes and contours (if you have).
Elementwo Canvas Blend - $30 30ml.
This brand has been talked about quite a bit online and most of it's users seem to be coming from Australia. I researched the brand since a lot of people seemed to enjoy them and their distribution for the US is actually located in my same town of Las Vegas. I was only able to try out the silicone formula as the water based is currently sold out. As of right now I know ZERO about this brand. There is no "founder," no "story," no reason for it existing except for it just exists. This is weird to me. There is barely any information regarding the products as well. So all I can do is try and repost my findings. It's ultra thin so again, it will work with smaller needle guns. This is good for those of you who are having problems with clogging, your currently formula is probably too thick. It didn't smell too strong and looked really pretty once on my face. However later when I removed it, I had some irritation bumps, so I might be sensitive to some of it's ingredients.
- Ultra thin
- dries a pretty semi-matte
- good range of colors and blushes
- Pricier to it's competitor Hydra-Lock by Temptu
- Not for sensitive skin
- No contour colors (bronzer tones are too yellow and orange for contouring)
Overall this product is nice and I will try it out in my kit with my clients, but due to it's sensitivity issue and the fact I can get something similar/better cheaper, I will stick to my Temptu. I'll update with the water-based line when it comes in.
Alcohol based airbrush should be discussed here because they are great to have in your kit as an airbrush artist. The only thing I would recommend alcohol based airbrush for is tattoo cover, scars, birthmarks, stretch marks, etc. This is NOT the type of product you want to airbrush as a foundation/blush/contour/highlight. Alcohol based foundations will definitely give you a water-proof finish but due to their drying nature, they will dry-out and dehydrate the clients skin while giving them the appearance of dull, textured skin. Ya no bueno for HD cameras. Your client will not be happy and you won't either. None-the-less, it's great to have on board for any type of body coverage your client will ask for, and they will. There is always a bruise, scar or tattoo that someone will want you to cover.
European Body Art Endura - $22 30ml.
Like I mentioned before, alcohol based is great to have in your kit to cover tattoos, scars etc. NOT for foundation. So head this in mind. European Body Art is a favorite in the world of special FX makeup and body painting. They recently added this line of skin toned colored alcohol paints for the very reason of just needing that range. I love LOVE these for tattoo covering and they have never failed me. I highly recommend the Rose Adjuster color to go along with a sampling of flesh tones for the best tattoo coverage kit. This product does dry instantly and you'll need 99% to clean and thin with.
- Extremely long wear
- A little goes a long way
- Fast drying
- great color range
- Slightly strong fruity smell, nice at first, irritating after long exposure
There are of course many more brands and products for each category on the market. I chose to review the top performers that I utilize as of right now. If you would like me to review a particular brand, please email me here Makeup@JasmineRingo.com Cheers!
So you decided to take the plunge...congratulation! I welcome you to the wonderful world of airbrushing, where many will try and few will succeed. What? Don't like that disclaimer of sorts? Well I will in no way, every in your life sugar coat a damn thing! I will always tell you like it is!
Airbrushing is a beautiful technique and skill to add to your makeup arsenal. So many people have found how in demand it is, that they almost feel forced into trying it out for their business. HD technology has also screamed for this style of makeup due to it's ability to show every damn thing on the skin. Airbrushing is a natural go-to for such needs.
But.....so few will conqure this tool. Mostly because it take practice. Lots and lots of practice. I have and continue to work hard to make it a little bit easier for those to learn this beautiful trade.
Now know not everyone will airbrush, and that's okay. Just don't sour talk the skill to your clients or companions. I would never tell others that sponging on makeup is as easy as pie, a YouTuber could do it. Ya, because we aren't here to bash each others techniques.
So if you would like to learn more about how and where to start with airbrushing...well continue reading...
Here are some reviews of the most popular and talked about airbrush systems. I can't review them all, but I will give you a run down of the best ones, a wide price range, and why you would possibly buy it.
Temptu Air - $380 ($342 with Pro discount)
This little system is really quite unique. It's literally all-in-one! there are no cables to connect, or guns to attach. Virtually cleans it's self and it evolving as you read this! I would suggest this kit above because it comes with at least 6 foundation pods. If you want to blush, highlight and contour, you will have to buy more pods.
- Hand held
- No cables (except USB charger used when charging)
- Holds charge for weeks!
- 3 speed pressure, perfect for beauty makeup, some character/fx makeup
- No breaking down to clean gun
- Minimal clogging
- Add Air Pod Pro to work with other products or custom mix foundations, blushes, eyeshadows, etc.
- Only uses Temptu Pods - they range from $28-$38 before Pro discount
- Need a separate Air Pod Pro to use other products or custom mix
- Only three pressure sprays, good for beauty and some character/fx makeup
- Single-action style spraying, meaning you get less control with the machine
- Pods tend to give me difficulty, such as rubber stoppers disconnecting and product spilling in my kit, or the mechanism doesn't grab the plastic parts that controls the paint flow well.
Overall I enjoy having this in my kit for quick makeups, bridal makeup and film work. Clients get a kick out of seeing me work with the machine and love the results. However the results come directly from my airbrush technique that I have been able to use with this somewhat awkward to first hold compact airbrush. Thanks to the addition of the Air Pod Pro which is a refillable pod that you can put whatever product you like in it. This allows more versatility and for me not to be stuck with SB formula which I don't care for over the Hydra Lock formula. But we'll talk formulas later...
Traditional Machines (gun & compressor) Kits
Kett Jett - $275 compressor $95 gun ($370)
This is another cute compact machine that I know a lot of artists have used successfully. The compressor is about as big as a Zack Morris 1990 cell phone. If you don't get that reference, I feel bad for ya. Ha! Pretty good price for a compact machine, or you can spend more for the starter kit (pictured above) which comes with the full Hydro line of products and a setting powder for $492. %30 off for Pros! PSI range from 0-30.
- Compact, great for beauty, bridal, studio work and some character/fx
- Can use power cord or battery option
- Would only recommend the .25mm Airbrush Gun, which can switch from single action to duel action
- The Hydro collection is the best formula, Only use Hydro-proof for tattoo covers, etc. Not for makeup.
- Can't read the PSI range, so you must get comfortable with feeling pressure
- Can be a bit noisy
- Gun are not great quality but can get some use out of them
- At the same price point, you could get better quality compressor and gun
- Inconsistencies with the compressor when I have worked with it
- Can only use Hydro-proof (alcohol based) formula with the .4mm gun, which is not a great gun due to it's plastic parts and low grade components
Temptu S-One - $250 w/ product
This is a pretty popular kit that I have seen lots of beginners get, mainly due to it's price. What's that saying though...oh ya, you get what you pay for. I wouldn't recommend this kit solely on the compressor. It's not great by any means. It runs non stop once you hit the power switch, that feature alone is worth you continuing reading and looking for other options. I'm only reviewing because it is so popular and I want you to make an educated decision, not waste your money. If your compressor runs non stop, it's motor will die really fast, like under a year fast. So you can buy a new compressor every year for $250 or get a good one right away that will last your life. Well here are the pros and cons...
- Compact, great from bridal, beauty, studio, some character/fx
- Price is almost too cheap, that may be good enough for some people
- Dual action gun
- 30% Pro discount
- Price is too low which equals cheap
- Compressor is in no way good, simply do not buy because of that
- Cannot just buy the compressor and gun, must buy kit
- Option to get other products in leu of S/B formula isn't available. The Hydra Lock line is the the best in the Temptu product line
- Loud motor that doesn't stop unless you power off
- Can't read the PSI range, so you must learn how to identify air pressure by feel
- Pro discount only takes $25 off kit, not full 30%. just FYI
Pure Pro Airbrush - $149-$389
This was a line I was sent to check out and while I like the formula of the product, the system it's self is extremely beginner. The only difference in the kits are the size of the product you will get in the set, either .25oz, .50oz or 1oz foundation bottles, and just 4 of them. So you will definitely have to purchase more foundations to round out your color range. I've seen many systems like this that my students would bring in a have me tinker with. I would have told them to go a different direction as far as systems to start with simply because of the simplicity and frustration this system can cause with it's rubber hose that slide onto the connector of the compressor and the gun. So you wont have an air tight seal and if you pull a little too much, POP! It pops right off. This isn't something that happens once, it continuously happens. So be warns with this style of system. Always check to make sure your hoses attach and screw onto the compressor and gun. Zero info on the range of PSI, but it feels like 0-12 working PSI. Again, you can't read your pressure, or have full control, just a three button option.
- Tiny, literally fits in your palm
- Product line is nice, easy to use
- All in one starter kit for true beginners at a super low rate
- Compressor is too tiny, very basic work with this guy
- Plastic parts equal less use
- 3 range air flow, less control on your PSI
- Continuous running compressor, which means only turns off when powered off. No compressor should continuously run or it's life is shortened
- Rubber hose slide to connect to gun and compressor, not air tight and tends to POP on regularly
- Gun has plastic parts, won't last long, tendency to clog with thicker products
Iwata Ninja Jet - $229 (40% additional off at Hobby Lobby)
This little guy is great for the traveling makeup artist looking to add airbrushing into their kit! It's small, lightweight, easy carry handle and made by the best in the airbrushing industry. However it's still a little too small for me, but great for beginners. Can't beat the extra 40% off at Hobby Lobby either! 5-18 working PSI.
- Lightweight, small
- Easy to travel with
- Top quality manufacturing
- 40% off at Hobby Lobby
- Great for beginners
- Continuous running motor
- No PSI gauge
Kryolan Compressor TC-501 - $205
This is my current favorite and most used compressor. It's actually manufactured by Sparmax, which I'll review their compressor next. I love that it is housed in a metal cabinet, making it easy for me to transport in my makeup kit. Fits nicely in my Zuca or Burton makeup kit. This is a high quality compressor and does everything it should. PSI regulator attaches to side of compressor and is easily read to fully control your PSI range. 5-40 working PSI which is great for any style of makeup you do! Slightly bigger than the previous compressor mentioned, but absolutely great! Self regulating motor means it doesn't continuously run while your refilling your gun or setting up for next client. This also means your motor will last much longer and be with you for many many years! Height is 8.5 inches (220 mm), width is 7.8 inches (200mm).
- Everything! This is a great compressor!
- Not tiny, but portable for the working makeup artist
Sparmax AC-27 Compressor- $139
This is a nice, compact compressor made by a quality manufacturer. Working PSI with gauge reader from 5-45 PSI. Small and travel friendly for working makeup artists.
- Quiet motor
- Great PSI range so you can do more types of makeup
- PSI gauge reader
- Continuous motor, could burn out quicker
Iwata Smart Jet - $331 (Rexart.com)
This is it guys, the creme de la creme! THE workhorse of all the compressors. This is my baby and I use it mostly for large jobs, body painting and FX. Created by the best manufacturer in the business! The Smart Jet technology means the compressors shuts off automatically, saving the life of the motor, quieter sounding, zero-maintenance, less heat-related moisture build up, reduces running time. 10.5in high, 12in wide. Fits snugly in my Zuca with room on top for additional makeup bags. So it seems big but it's not huge. The price it's selling at Rexart.com is amazing!!!
- Best quality
- High performance
- Warranty covered
- Auto shut off motor, saves life of compressor
- Best for any line of makeup work, especially body painting and FX
- Large, but compact enough to travel with
These are the only guns I will recommend. I will NOT review any other gun because no other gun compares. What I will review is a few difference styles so you can get the perfect one for your style of work. These guns are all Dual-Action, meaning you will control the air AND paint flow. Other guns, less expensive guns have plastic parts that breaks and tend to be single-action, which you cannot control your air flow. This can result in all sorts of issues when creating detailed work.
*I will not recommend the Iwata NEO guns. For simply the fact they are the lease expensive of the brand due to the fact they are manufactured outside the official manufacturing which is in Japan. If they aren't made in Japan, don't buy.
Iwata HP-CS Eclipse - $120 w/ 40% Hobby Lobby discount
This is my die hard, ride or die airbrush gun! I can't say enough good things about it! It's beautifully build and made in Japan with top of the line parts. I own 12 of these! That's how much I love them. I use them for everything and I can't get enough. Large cup will hold plenty of product for the active airbrusher.
Iwata Eclipse HP-BS -
The only difference with this gun is the cup size. It is smaller for those who work with smaller amount of product. Great for beauty makeup where you are using a few drops of makeup at a time. Easy to clean due to it's smaller cup size.
Iwata Eclipse HP-BCS - $104 (Rexart.com)
This is a bottom-feed or bottle-feed gun. Great for artists who change between colors frequently, such as body painters and fx artists. I enjoy working with these gun when I have very specific colors in large amounts that I will be using. Most of the time I enjoy custom mixing, so I usually use my top-feed gun, but these bottle feed guns are great for what they do. Makes it easier to use just one gun, rather than multiple guns when using lots of colors.
Iwata Custom Micron CM-C Plus v.2 - $451
Ya, it's expensive. However it's a beaute Clarke. I don't currently own this puppy, but I will by end of year. This gun is for the serious professional who wants utmost detail to their work. Mostly used by FX artist such as Steve Wang, who's highly detailed work is featured on the Lycans and Vampires in Underworld and Lady in the Water. This gun will give you such amazing control, you can airbrush hair onto your subject, ya hair strokes. Here is some reference for what detail this gun gives:
Trust me, you need these things to successfully not throw your airbrush gun through a window. Look, I guess airbrushing is difficult and has lots of troubleshooting to navigate when you first start trying it out. Due to it's learning curve, here are some must needed items that some will come with your airbrush, or some you will need to purchase separately. Either way, you will be much happier after having them.
Teflon Tape - $1 at most hardware supplies or less!
This seems like a weird thing, but it's saved my guns! Through constant use of twisting the gun onto your air hose, the pipe threads can sometimes not grip as well, resulting in leaky air. You don't want leaky air because it can cause issues and you wondered the whole time why after all the cleaning you've done, the product still won't spray right. Well wrap a little teflon tape or plumbers tape around the pipe threads and it's fixed! Great to always have on hand in your kit.
Super Lube - Under $10 for full size tube
This is something you'll need that you didn't think you'll need. Case in point I had a student recently show me that her guns trigger was sticking. She cleaning the gun immaculately trying the rid the issue, but didn't know how beneficial lube was for the parts of the gun the run effectively. I put a little drop of this down into the trigger and voila! It worked great after that. So keep this on hand to either lube the needle from time to time or fix sticky joints.
Extra Needle - Under $10
It never hurts to have an extra needle on hand. Due to how easy it is to bend the sharp tip of the needle either due to dropping, improper cleaning or inserting harshly into the gun, this piece can easily damage. I always have a few on hand in various sizes to also pair with different formulas. Thicker formulas need thicker needles, and visa versa.
Airbrush Cleaner-Nurturing Force - $12 w/ pro discount @ Nigels
This shit right here, everything! THE ONLY CLEANER YOU NEED! It's does everything and is environmentally safe and vegan! This will clean not only water-based products, but alcohol-based and silicone based. This is great because it means you can use one gun for everything! Usually that is not the case, because if you accidentally mix water into alcohol products, you will get major clogs. Same with water into silicone, or alcohol into silicone. So the fact that this cleans everything is amazing! Boy it cleans too! You only need a little, so it will last you for a very damn long time! This is a MUST OWN!
Zen Pipe Cleaners - $5.52 for a 3 pack on Amazon
The BEST pipe cleaners ever! Seriously, these are about the only thing you need to effectively clean your gun thoroughly. I use a combo of the soft and Hard pipe cleaners which have scrubby pieces on them to help with dried up paint stuck in the gun. Just thread them through and pull out the other side of the gun! Simple and effective.
Next up we will talk about products and their differences. Until then...happy shopping for your next airbrush machine! If you have any input for any of the above mentioned products, feel free to add on your information and email me at Makeup@JasmineRingo.com Cheers!
What do you see when you look at these images? Just at a glance, then a stare, then a thorough review....what is it?
Skin, I just simply see raw, refined, and unfiltered skin. It almost feels vintage. Or otherworldly. As if we are looking back in time at an idea, or looking into the future to a new civilization. Because lets face it, this is not a whole lot of what we are seeing in todays culture. There is quite noticeably a "trend" of sorts that is the reality celebrity driven chasm of so-called beauty standards for todays culture. I think you know exactly what I am talking about. But first, let's talk about skin...
I don't mean let's bust out our cosmo books and review the esthetician section. Hell, I'd need to bring in a dermatologist for review if I wanted to really go down that road. So I won't, because I'm not a dermatologist, and that's not really the conversation of skin I want to have. Just you and me, artist to artist, discussing the most tedious process of our client/artist relationship. Skin.
I would boldly say that skin is 75% of what we do as makeup artist. We tend to spend the most amount of money by way of creating a perfect canvas. We invest in
Variety of Foundations
Too many Powders
And then just about a bagful more of other preferred ointments, lotions, prep tonics, hydrators, serums, and magic potions to create the perfect, or rather "perfect" skin.
Some people don't really focus too much attention here, just hitting the bare minimum to finish the job. Some may repeat the same process with each client, because that's just where their education stops. STOPS. STOPS.
Well before I get there, let's talk real quick about how I arrived at the blog post. Simple. It was this:
This is that trend I kinda hinted at earlier, without really just getting to the point. This right here is what millions, ya I said MILLIONS, of people are clawing at. Shit, the people showing you how to do it are getting rich all the while too! Oh and the cosmetic industry, they are just laughing all the way to the bank because now you are hypnotized into wanting to look like this. A clone of a clone of a clone that really just isn't even human looking anymore.
WHERE IS THE SKIN???
We just went from this:
Now before one of you, sensitive Sally's gets upset know this. I am not here to bash this girl and her choice of makeup application. By all means, wear all of the makeups. What I am to discuss is where we got lost, and where we stopped educating ourselves. First, just scroll right back up the to before picture, don't worry, I'll wait.
Now look at the after. It's literally shocking, and for me not in the good way. I just ooze over her before makeup. Her skin is glistening, her eyes are so warm and soft, her skin coloring is so mesmerizing and full of hue and depth. Then after, I feel like I'm looking at her evil step mom. Really there is just nothing else left to say.
Let's breakdown how she got there...
Okay let's take a breath.
I think I feel a little better.
But wait! HIGHLIGHTER!
Why the hell do you think everyone is so obsessed with highlighter right now?
I'll give you 5..4..3..2..1...... . . .
Unless you're living under a rock somewhere, the hottest thing to buy in makeup right now is highlighters. If it hasn't dawned on you yet, let me turn the lights on.
With the above aforementioned makeup technique that is so crazily famous...we lost something. Ya, you know what. Skin, we lost skin okay. We have spackled and sponged, and covered the shit out of our skin that we don't see skin anymore. We see no light, no lush sheen of bouncing light. Because we absorbed it all with concealer, and full coverage foundation, then pressed and smooshed even more full coverage concealer on top and baked the ever loving shit out of our skin till it slurped and sucked every ounce of radiating goodness we were gifted with by the aliens. Wait, that's another story.
Ya, we NEED highlighter, more than ever because we can't bounce light off our concealment of nature.
Don't get me wrong, I love a little artificial light every now and then, but it surely doesn't compare to fresh light that bounces of fresh skin.
So is that where we stop? Do we just put more and more and more on until the wearer no longer resembles youth, or themselves?
I concur. I immediately thought of one thing...
This my friends is Jamie Salmon. A hyper realistic contemporary sculptor. You may have seen his work on a Facebook post before. His work along with many other artist and special fx makeup artists work popped up in my head.
Reason being is simple. Education. They have studied the art of color, and the magic of layering techniques to build the most realistic looking makeups and sculptures, from non-real things. Literally the opposite of what a lot of makeup artist/enthusiasts are doing to their skin.
There is that word again...skin. It's the focus of this topic, and really had me wondering why not that many people are learning about hyper-realistic techniques. It's really the idea of making something out of nothing. Tricking the eye and viewer into believing what they are seeing is real. It's hard. Not easy at all. Which is why only so many people are incredibly good at it, while the rest of us are struggling to keep up and everyone else is just oblivious.
In this world, the artist gets to a point where the base of the skin is mildly transparent (depending on their product they used) and lacks life. Well what does life look like? Have you ever seen a dead person? You can google it, and then you will know what the absence of life looks like in the skin. It's really quite hard to put it in words. Which is why I personally think it's so incredibly hard to make someone look dead on camera.
So yes, the artist must add life to that object. Through layers of colors, this is where major color theory knowledge kicks in. Then layers of mottling, speckling, spattering, veining, washes, and on and on. They are working so hard to make a mannequin look like a living, could-be-breathing object. Makes me think a lot about the silicone bodies made for Kanye West's new video.
I look at this and just am in awe. Not the reaction most people had, with their distain for Kanye. I am quite thrilled with this. Being an artist that is striving to make incredible work, I nod and salute this work. Because it is incredible. It took major skill to make from beginning to end. Their end goal, to make it look as real as possible, and so much of that went into the painting element.
Meanwhile....ya'll are over here like more, MORE!
Here is what I challenge you to do. Learn about color theory, to the point of exhaustion. To the point that choosing your next paint color for your wall is so strangely scientific and thoughtful, you baffle your partner.
Five points if you can tell me the difference of these colors:
What I am getting at is this...there is so much to be learned. A challenging new way to look at makeup. Why do we divide the education of beauty and special FX? A lot can be learned when these worlds collide. Let's stop spackeling on so much coverage, coverage, coverage and focus on the skin. Giving it the gilded, glowing light that comes free, we just use our art, technique and education to spin it into beauty.
Maybe I'll just have to create a class myself. The ultimate skin class. A "less is more" approach to how we apply makeup, instead of a "more is more." Applying less, more strategically, with finesse. Building tone, radiance, luminosity, depth, hue, range, transparency.
What do you think?
Let's face it, airbrush makeup is growing, lingering for some or just won't go away for others. No matter where you currently stand with airbrush, your clients are still demanding it. Why is that?
We'll let's break it down, how do people view airbrush makeup? Luxury is the first thing that pops in most peoples mind. If you haven't witnessed or personally felt the experience of airbrush application, then it's probably hard for you to agree to this. Technically, airbrush is the application of a product through means of a mist, or air. It's literally blown onto the skin, in micro particles. This renders the product to sit lightly on the skin, blurring and diffusing imperfections and texture and when applied properly, invisible.
You might now see where luxury could come to mind, it's applied with an expensive tool, requires hours and hours of training and numerous amounts of practice to perfect it's craft. To a client it feels weightless, looks natural, and appears expensive. It has become the go to technique for brides, and a great option for camera work.
As we ascend into a technically driven culture, it's no wonder we keep seeing a rising demand for technically driven products and services. Now you may still find yourself removed from this topic. You either don't airbrush or do not want to learn airbrushing. That is absolutely okay, you can stop reading and go about your day. Or you could continue to read to fully educate yourself on this form of makeup application so you can better serve your next inquiring client. Not to say "I absolutely hate airbrushing, blah blah." We don't do that right? We don't discredit other artists skill and talents because we don't offer those same services. We can do one of two things, keep the job and hire on an artist who can do airbrushing, or pass the job on. However, here is a better option...learn airbrushing.
I'm an airbrush artist, have been for nearly 13 years. I've been educating airbrush for 8 years now. I want everyone to airbrush, I think it's an absolutely amazing skill for any working makeup artist to have under their belt. I believe that there will be so many varying degrees of airbrush artists out there and the bad is not where I want any of you to be. I want you all to be good, hell! I want you all the be great! So let's break down why won't we?
- Luxury service
- Expensive service
- Ultimate blend-ability
- HD Camera approved
- Flawless coverage
- Technology driven
- Technically challenging
- Expensive tools
- Separate products needed
- Education required
- Constant practice needed
- Kit heavy
- Poor technique
- Troubleshooting issues with clients
- JUST PLAIN BAD TECHNIQUE. Let's face it, if you cannot confidently airbrush a face chart without welding circles, utilize blush, highlight, contour and eventually eyeshadow without picking up a brush, just don't airbrush.
- Charging clients more money for a product you blew onto the skin, then touched up with your Beauty Blender and applied blush, bronzer and highlight with a brush, then you shouldn't be charging a client an extra fee. If you only feel confident airbrushing foundation, cool, you just wasted a lot of money on a tool that can easily be replaced by a brush or sponge. You must proceed to the next step, or cut your loses and sell the machine to someone who will push it beyond the rudimentary levels of just foundation.
Are you still there? Cool! So you want to know more, want to get better, or want some tips? I can do that for you. Hell, I can teach you from the ground up if you like, just keep your eyes peeled for my traveling workshops.
What I can do right now is a few things. First some tips. These are some rules I strictly live by every time I go to blow air product upon someones face and body.
101 TIPS FOR AIRBRUSHING:
- Do not touch a sponge or brush to the skin after you have airbrushed. If you must do this, then you aren't ready to airbrush someone.
Okay, I have to stop right there, because I feel like this needs a little explanation. I make this a number one 101 tip because it's simple, to the point and direct. This may even be pointing directly at you, and if it is good! Because you need to get a refresher, you need to practice more before you offer a luxe service and especially before you charge someone more for a service you aren't quite ready to offer. Putting a sponge or brush to someones face after airbrushing them means a few things. You over applied product, mostly this is the main culprit. You speckled product on the client, due to starting the gun on the face, rather than starting air flow away from the face. This is a completely amateur move. You never start the gun pointing at someones skin, NEVER. Another reason you are using a brush or sponge for touch up is probably because you are trying to bronze, blush or contour without skill and practice. Again, don't do it if you aren't ready.
(Now back to the tips)
101 TIPS FOR AIRBRUSHING: (continued)
- Do not touch a sponge or brush to the skin after you have airbrushed. If you must do this, then you aren't ready to airbrush someone
- Get the right equipment. This I will elaborate on another post soon.
- Etiquette, yes there is etiquette to keeping your client/model/actor happy during application
- Don't ask them to hold their breath, have them breath normal. If they are flinching a lot, your pressure may be too high
- Always start air away from the face, then blow on neck or collar bone and ask if the pressure feels good to them. Always begin in this order, never directly where you left off on the face
- If airbrushing body parts, don't have them hold out their arms or legs while you work, hold it for them. They should always be relaxed.
- Don't airbrush in circles. This form of application is taught so dreadedly often, mostly for the means to sell product to consumers. Circles will only get you into horrible habits you cannot break.
- Practice beyond practice, troubleshoot your errors and find solutions to all your problems before accepting money for your service.
- Before ever airbrushing on your next client, practice on paper, facecharts and above all, master these worksheets: (Yes, these are for you, by me, for free. Your welcome.)
First things first: You should start practicing on paper. Tape it to a wall, get a large sketch pad and place on a easel, I don't care. Print my worksheets out too. Make copies because you will find that you definitely need more than one sheet to get a technique down.
Here are some ways I love to practice:
Print out some face charts, or better, print them on watercolor paper. The absorption quality is great for airbrushing. Practice airbrushing the face in strokes, not circles. Utilizing the dots and dagger techniques you learned from my worksheets.
Get out some large size poster paper or sketch pad, tape to a wall and try all sorts of techniques. This will help you gain control of the start and stop of air flow and paint flow.
SINGLE-ACTION GUN - Only allows you to control the start and stop of paint flow. Air will constantly blow through the gun
Common Single-Action airbrush guns.
DOUBLE-ACTION GUN - Allows you to control air AND paint flow. Air does not continuously flow. This is a more preferred gun and allows for better control of product.
Popular Double-Action guns.
I personally prefer a double-action gun like Iwata eclipse, but I also work to death the Temptu Air which is a single-action style machine. Because of my training with a double-action, I can utilize ANY airbrush gun. That is a bonus.
Temptu Air is a new revolutionary machine created by TEMPTU
It is a completely cordless, yes cordless machine which you hold in your hand like a juice box and use your index finger to control the paint flow exactly like we do with a traditional airbrush gun. It has three settings with a maximum air flow of about 15 PSI. Perfect for beauty makeup. It's my go-to for bridal airbrushing and on camera makeup. I am simply obsessed with the easy of color change, no cleaning, and versatility. Don't believe me? I wasn't a believer that this would live up to my vast use with my Iwata system, but check this out:
Wait, did I trip you up and say something you didn't quite understand? PSI...if you do know what this it, please skip over and continue reading. If not, damn Gina! You neeeeeeeeeeeeed to educate yourself on your airbrush. Okay here you go, PSI stands for Pounds per Square Inch. It is the measure of air pressure blowing out of your gun. Most airbrush compressors have a regulator that reads the pressure. Some don't and you have to know the feeling of air pressure. Here are some helpful pressure ranges to do makeup with:
- 10-12 PSI - Foundation
- 5-10 PSI - Blush, Contour, Highlight, Eyeshadow
- 15-20 PSI - Light body makeup
- 20-40 PSI - Body Painting
So I leave you with this, a breakdown of the good, the bad, and the complicated life of airbrushing. You now have my best laid tips, worksheets to get your hands flexible, and the confidence (hopefully) to move forward with booking all of the airbrush jobs. Just reading this will not do much good, you must stop, and go practice. Now! Now! NOW!!