Monthly Archives: July 2015

“Peaches & Cream” Fashion Editorial

Earlier last week we had our latest fashion editorial “Peaches and Cream” published in Culture Magazine.


From Culture Magazine


LEFT- Jayson Brundson silk shirt / Georgia Alice dress / Natalie Marie bracelet / Vintage Earring stylist’s own.  RIGHT- Natalie Marie bracelets / Gail Sorronda blouse.

LEFT- Alice McCall Playsuit / Kirt Geiger Pumps / Millicent Darling Custom made Earrings.  RIGHT- Gail Sorronda Blouse / Dyspnea sheer flares/ Natalie Marie Jewellery

LEFT- Alice McCall playsuit / Kurt Geiger pumps / Millicent Darling custom made earrings.  RIGHT- Gail Sorronda blouse / Dyspnea sheer flares / Natalie Marie jewellery.

LEFT- . Alice McCall Bell Sleeve top / Alice McCall Pencil Skirt.  RIGHT- Georgia Alice Jumpsuit / Penny Sage Vest / Terry Biviano Pumps / Natalie Marie Bracelet.

LEFT- . Alice McCall bell sleeve top / Alice McCall pencil skirt.  RIGHT- Georgia Alice jumpsuit / Penny Sage vest / Terry Biviano pumps / Natalie Marie bracelet.

The shoot was lensed by Natasha Foster who also built the set. Our wardrobe stylist was Jessie Frost who took influence from the 1970s. And Bella from FiveTwenty Management brought everything to life.

I worked on hair, make-up and nails and here’s a breakdown of what I did.


I worked with Bella’s natural texture to keep her curls looking full yet “undone”. I prepped the hair with Fudge Sea Salt Spray and Pump Up mousse, blasted dry with my hairdryer and set with Fudge Membrane Gas and Head Shine.


Tools of the trade and the final result.



Filed into a squoval shape, were painted using Mecca Cosmetica’s Volumina (two coats) and I applied the Sally Hansen Mega Shine Top Coat for extra shine. I LOVE this top coat, really does what it says and I use it myself always!  Dries really fast too which is always a bonus for those of us who are also impatient.


Images courtesy of Mecca Cosmetica and Sally Hansen.




My focus was on creating a beautiful creamy skin texture, strong brows to balance Bella’s curls and to use a colour palette that complimented the muted 70s feel of the shoot. I opted for gold and brown tones to work alongside the set backdrop and to work alongside wardrobe.  I used MAC paint pots, contour powders, highlighters and brow products.


I drew influence from Jerry Hall in the ‘70s and you can view my moodboard of inspiration images here.


Image courtesy of

Et voila!


If you enjoyed reading how this editorial came together, you may also enjoy other behind-the-scenes posts here.

If you would like to know more about the products used or have any questions about the editorial, please leave your questions below.  Hope you enjoyed the post.


© 2015 Sonia Allen Make Up.  Do not copy, reprint or republish content and/or photos without author’s written permission.
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Wedding Day Lipsticks (that won’t ruin your first kiss)

The first time your husband-to-be will see you on your wedding day is a moment you will treasure for life. I always think it’s nice to keep a memento of that occasion (in addition to the photos). Being a make-up artist, naturally I’m going to suggest that this souvenir could be your wedding day lipstick. Every time you use the lipstick thereafter, you will always be reminded of your wedding day (good for so many reasons!). So here are my top pick of lipsticks that have good staying power AND are also kiss-conducive. You can kiss and have great lipstick that stays put too!?… Oh 2015 how divine you are.

wedding day lipstick

The lipsticks I’m going to recommend are all a satin finish which is fancy-speak for a lipstick that has less pigment in it than a matte or cream lipstick with a sheer finish. I like to think of them as a hybrid of between a lipstick and a gloss: the staying power of a lipstick with the texture of a gloss (but more balmy than sticky!).

You can always swap to a matte or cream lipstick for the reception if you wish to go for a bolder shade and I’ll do another post with those suggestions later on.

When shopping for satin textured lipsticks, please note that satin/sheer lipsticks have a high oil component so they appear darker in the bullet than they are once applied. Don’t be put off and swatching is always advised.

Ok so the satin lipstick roundup includes:

Chanel “Rouge Coco”

  • Impressive range of colours (neutrals, pinks, reds, berries & orange)
  • Infused with mimosa, jojoba and sunflower plant butters
  • Great staying power
Chanel Rouge Coco

Chanel Rouge Coco in “Olga”

The colour range looks like this:


Image courtesy of Chanel

Available from: Myer, David Jones and a few stand alone Chanel beauty and fragrance boutiques.


Lipstick Queen “Lipstick Saint”

  • 20 shades mostly catering to pinks and nudes
  • Only 10% pigment so a really great option if you like your makeup minimal
  • If you layer enough you can actually build the colour intensity
Lipstick Queen "Saint Lipstick" in Bare Nude

Lipstick Queen Saint Lipstick in “Bare Nude”

The colour range:

Lipstick Queen Saint Lipstick colour range

Image courtesy of Mecca Cosmetica

Available from: Kit Cosmetics and selected Mecca Maxima stores.


YSL “Rouge Volupté Shine”

  • Hyaluronic acid microspheres seal in moisture & Vitamin E conditions lips.
  • Also with an SPF15 so great for outdoor weddings.
  • Great range of sheer bold colours
  • Can’t beat that packaging!
YSL Rouge Volupté Shine in “28- Rose in Time”

YSL Rouge Volupté Shine in “Rose in Time”

The colour range:

YSL Rouge Volupté Shine colour range

Image courtesy of YSL

Available from: Myer, David Jones, Mecca Maxima & Sephora.


Chantecaille “Lip Chic”

  • Brilliant longwear formula (once the sheen wears off you’re left with a beautiful stain of colour)
  • The shape of the bullet makes for precise application (no brush needed!)
  • Are shea butter based so your lips feel nourished the whole time
Chantecaille Lip Chic in Tea Rose

Chantecaille Lip Chic in “Tea Rose”

The colour range:

Chantecaille Lip Chic colour range

Image courtesy of Nordstrom

MAC Sheen Supreme

  • Super hydrating
  • The finishes vary between being pearlescent and creamy
  • Small hint of fragrance
Mac Sheen Supreme Lipstick in "Zen Rose"

Mac Sheen Supreme Lipstick in “Zen Rose”

The colour range:

MAC Sheen Supreme Lipstick colour range

Image courtesy of MAC

Available from: Myer, David Jones & stand alone MAC stores.


My top tip:

Keep the Transformulas LipVolume on your lips for the whole morning of your wedding while you are getting ready.  The treatment balm will keep lips hydrated and plumped while the peppermint makes you feel minty fresh.  You can keep a light layer on before adding your wedding lipstick too!

Transformulas LipVolume lip plumper

If you enjoyed this post, you might like my other pre-wedding advice that you can download here.  Other bridal inspiration posts can be found here.

If you would like any more information about the lipsticks reviewed here, please leave your questions below and I’ll get back to you.  In the meantime, happy kissing!


© 2015 Sonia Allen Make Up.  Do not copy, reprint or republish content and/or photos without author’s written permission.
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New Website Launched!

My new website launched today and I am over the moon. A year of work with Ben my website developer and it’s finally live!

Sonia Allen Make Up new website

The splash page of my new website:

Working across fashion, bridal, film and TV, I wanted the new site to reflect the different portfolios of Sonia Allen Make Up.  Hence the split splash page.  The image on the left will take you straight to my fashion/film/television work while the image on the right will take you to all things Sonia Allen Bridal.  We also built a link from the website to the blog.

Sonia Allen Make Up Blog Link on Website

The new site is mobile friendly and works across any mobile device, tablet or desktop computer.

Image galleries were modernised and optimised for faster viewing. If you click on any image, you get the option to view it enlarged and you can continue to scroll through that way too.  Nifty!

Sonia Allen Make Up image gallery on new website

One of the image galleries on the new website in thumbnail form. Click on an image and it will enlarge.

We built in a few new pages to the bridal part of the website. Now you can see the bridal editorials I have worked on, testimonials and images from past brides, press clippings, recommended suppliers as well as which brands I use (for bridal work) and my Beauty Advice page for brides-to-be.

Many many thanks must go to Ben McArthur, my tirelessly dedicated web developer and graphic designer. Thank you for all your hard work, patience and meticulous attention to detail. It’s been over a year of emails, Skype calls and revisions but even from the other side of the world, you have delivered a wonderful end result and I can’t thank you enough. We will celebrate later this year when I make my way back to London.

Image courtesy of

If like me, you are a fan of Ben’s work you can see some of the stationary and signage he designed for my stall at the One Fine Day wedding fair here.  He also does beautiful custom-designed wedding stationary (so multi-talented).  Personalised emblem design for invitations although I’ve already tied the knot?  Yes please!!

I hope you all enjoyed checking out the new site. A website is always a work-in-progress especially for those of us in the creative industries. I have lots of new fashion editorials, campaigns and bridal shoots that will be going up on the website in the coming weeks so be sure to check back again! You can like my Facebook page or follow me on Instagram or Pinterest to see snippets of my latest work.

Happy browsing!


© 2015 Sonia Allen Make Up.  Do not copy, reprint or republish content and/or photos without author’s written permission.
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indeed LABORATORIES… Indeed it’s Good!

Discoveries are the best. You either learn never to go near/eat/touch/experience again (and put it down to life experience!) OR you can discover something that is great. I recently discovered Canadian skincare brand indeed LABORATORIES and couldn’t wait to share.


Some products from the Indeed Laboratories brand

Those that know me or have worked with me know how passionate I am about skincare and looking after your skin.  This doesn’t mean you need a million products to do so and a higher price point doesn’t necessarily mean better quality or better results. It took me a long time to believe the latter but five years of being in the industry and I can assure you I have learned the hard way!

I also don’t pay any attention to “anti-ageing” claims. They’re always aimed at women (not ok!) and I believe ageing is a privilege. So you’ll never hear me talk about “diminished lines” or “collagen boosting”-blah blah. I look for simple products that are easy and enjoyable to use that really nourish and support skin (and they’re the only ones I’ll be sharing on this blog!).

So lately, I have been testing out the indeed LABORATORIES products on models, actors and brides as well as on myself. Certainly a wide demographic of people and I continue to be impressed.


Simple products that do what they say?  Check.

Attractive yet recyclable packaging that look chic in my kit/bathroom?  Check.

Reasonable price point?  Check.

No animal testing, cruelty free and animal derivative free ingredients?  Check.

Fragrance free?  Check.

Hi-tech ingredients and modern technology?  Check.

Great textures?  Check.

Here are a couple of my favourites from the Indeed Laboratories Hydraluron range.

Indeed Laboratories: Facial Powdered Exfoliator

indeed LABORATORIES: Facial Powdered Exfoliator

What is it?

An exfoliator in powder form where you add as little or as much water (or get fancy and use a toning mist) as you want to achieve the desired strength.

What’s in it?

  • Bamboo extract- in fine form that won’t cause microtears to the skin
  • Rice bran powder- great ingredient for softening skin (the Japanese have been using it for centuries!)
  • Pineapple enzymes- natural exfoliator and is anti-inflammatory
  • Okinawa red algae- renowned for moisture-retaining properties (algae at the beach = gross.  Algae in skincare = soooo wonderful for you)
  • Hyaluronic acid- adds hydration which is a nice extra property you don’t normally find in exfoliators

How have I been using it?

  • On myself- once/twice a week after cleansing and before moisturising
  • On clients- whenever I feel uneven skin texture before make-up application

Why do I like it?

Easy & fun to use
You hydrate your skin as you exfoliate
Can customise how much exfoliation you need
Can use in the shower (=time saving)
Skin feels so smooth afterwards and you consequently need less serum/moisturiser

Indeed Laboratories: Hydraluron Moisture Booster

indeed LABORATORIES: Hydraluron Moisture Booster

What is it?

Hyaluronic acid that is 100% free of animal derived raw materials and organic solvent remnants that can be used as a serum.

Hyaluronic acid is an incredibly hydrating ingredient that holds up to 10000 times its weight in water, meaning anything you layer over the top will take longer to evaporate off the surface of the skin. Ie- the water in your moisturiser will take longer to evaporate. Hooray for dehydrated skin.

When I use this product I feel so wonderfully hydrated and then I remember this:

Zoolander Merman

Image courtesy of

What’s in it?

Water, Propanediol, Sodium Hyaluronate, Ahnfeltia Concinna extract, Carbomer, Butylene Glycol, Disodium EDTA, Sodium hydroxide, Phenoxyethanol

How have I been using it?

  • On myself- massaging all over my face every morning and night after cleansing/exfoliating and before my moisturiser
  • On clients- on anyone with dehydrated skin after cleansing and before moisturising (been using this on pretty much everyone, the packaging is extremely kit-friendly)

Why do I like it?

Ingredients are great (not full of low-grade “filler” ingredients)
Makes skin really soft
Gives skin a beautiful glow
No outrageous claims on the packaging
Easy to use and integrate with other brands and products
Works on all skin types
Increases healing time for acne scarring with prolonged use
Easily-absorbed texture (if it’s sticky, you’re using too much!)

Indeed Laboratories: Hydraluron Moisture Boosting Mask

indeed LABORATORIES: Hydraluron Moisture Boosting Mask

What is it?

4 sheet masks per pack, each mask soaked in a hyaluronic acid solution

What’s in it?

Lots and lots of hyaluronic acid

How have I been using it?

  • On myself- after cleansing and drying my face I unfold the mask and place over my face. I press in place (I want all the goodness!) and leave it for 15minutes while I relax (do dishes/answer emails/chat on the phone). Once I remove the mask I massage in the remaining serum (no need to wash off) and follow with a moisturiser.
  • On clients- never have the luxury of time to use this on clients but I always recommend them to brides for the night before their wedding.

Why do I like it?

Soooooo relaxing & cooling
Sorts out skin from any over-indulgence
You can skip serum and go straight to moisturiser
Great for dehydration (and long haul flights if you don’t mind the stares)
Great pick-me-up

In Australia, Indeed Laboratories is available from Priceline and Chemist Warehouse.

indeed LABORATORIES products

indeed LABORATORIES products

I would love to hear from anyone who has been using the indeed LABORATORIES products- which is your favourite and why? And for those who haven’t tried the range, is there any other information you would like to know? Drop me your questions and feedback below.


© 2015 Sonia Allen Make Up.  Do not copy, reprint or republish content and/or photos without author’s written permission.
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