Welcome back to the series “International Boho-Chic Designers”. I have met so many fashion designers and artists on my travels who I buy jewelry, swimsuits, clothing, etc from. I love having unique items and I’m creating this section to share them with you! These are people I’ve met and personally shopped from/love, not people perking/paying me.
I have a little obsession with makeup, which is odd considering I rarely wear it. You have to spend quite a bit at Sephora to be a VIB (Very Important Beauty Insider) and I meet the quota easily. When I do wear makeup, I like to take my time and put a little of everything on. I’m pretty sure that’s not what you’re supposed to do…So, I happen to have a friend I met in Bombay that is a makeup artist for some serious clients! I figured I’d hit her up for some tips.
Introducing Makeup By Hongling
Hongling Lim was born and raised in Singapore. She’s another great example of someone who isn’t using their degree in the way they thought they would, but instead found a new calling. She didn’t start out in the makeup industry, but in an office. She knew pretty quickly she wasn’t into it that kind of work life so she took a break.
Out of boredom (and a little interest) she took a makeup class and it stuck. Being brought up in an Asian family, she was told it was a job with no prospects, but she knew it was the right fit for her. FYI all the photos below unless noted are all shots of Hongling’s work!
Her work is all about enhancing her client’s natural beauty, which is so evident from her photos. The less it looks like you’re wearing, the better! Makeup artist Pat McGrath, who is considered an industry legend, is one of her biggest inspirations.
work of Pat McGrath, Hongling’s idol
I asked Hongling to tell me a little bit about her makeup routine when she’s traveling:
“I have light makeup on when I travel. I don’t want to look like a raccoon at the end of the day and I like to avoid touch-ups. I’m quite lucky as my skin holds my makeup base well; some blotting is needed and that’s it.”
“I bring along a Kajal Eye Liner
whenever I travel even though I’m typically for the natural look. I never know when I’m going to hit the club; and if I do, the kajal liner is enough for me to create a soft smoky eye.
Let’s ask Hongling to help us poor souls do our makeup…
What exactly does your job entail?
A typical day of my job starts with lugging my heavy suitcase and bags around! That just comes with the job.I enjoy the time when I’m actually working on my model’s face. We talk about anything under the sun! We share our stories and joke around.
Ok, now tell us: what are you 5 specific products you can’t live without?
What is the one mistake are most girls making with their make up?
They too often mess up their eyeliner! Some girls wing it out from too far within the eyes, and some make the wing too thick and too much in general.
Is lip liner really that important? Now that bright lips are in style, I feel like I might need to get some.
Lip liner is essential when you want to give your lips definition, especially when you have uneven lip shapes and want to “justify” them a little. Otherwise, using just lipstick is fine.
In Asia, some (the TV commercials) imply lighter skin is ideal, but for those who like a tan what product do you recommend?
I’ll recommend products that make my client’s skin glow. It makes your skin looks healthy and somewhat sexy. Tanning in the sun does dry your skin so be careful!
In high humidity, like during monsoon, what products are necessary?
In places like this, waterproof or smudge-proof eye makeup products are must haves! Also general long-lasting makeup products! Start with Eyeshadow Primer, the Maybelline liner mentioned above, waterproof mascara, K-palette , and dust over with a finishing powder.
How do you set make up when it’s SO hot out?
Firstly, you must prep your skin well. You need to have on makeup base like mentioned above. Once your makeup is done, brush on some setting powder, like Make Up For Ever HD finishing powder to hold/set the makeup. You can even spray on some oil control setting spray when needed.
What product will help clear out pores when there is high pollution like Bombay?
A good makeup remover is important. This should be followed by a cleanser routine to ensure skin is deeply cleansed and no particles remain to clog your pores. I start with Chacott Cleansing water or Bioderma Sensibio H2O to remove makeup. After cleansing, I use Mario Badescu Silver Powder to treat my skin. After a few uses, you will notice that your pores, breakouts and black/whiteheads are reduced! It helps in oil control on T-zone too.
What are your favorite 3 lip products?
I love any moisturizing lip balms, Yves Saint Laurent Lip stain #27, and bright pink lip colors to create that Korean lip makeup that everyone’s going crazy about (intense on the inner lips, pale on the outer lips).
Have you tried the new idea of “oiling” your face? Josie Maran Argan Oil is a trendy item that I’ve just started trying & like so far.
I don’t use oil on my face, but I’m not against it. Imagine applying olive oil onto areas of dry skin on your hand. Having it on for a short period of time nourishes your skin, but do remember to wash it completely off your face so it doesn’t cause adverse results.
I write a lot, a LOT, about jet lag but tell me, what do you do to keep your face from drying up after a flight or before?
It’s all about the mask! I’ve tried putting mask on everyday for a week; I can see noticeable results. The mask I’m using is Beauty Dairy Mask, which is a huge craze in Asia! (Editors Note: BB cream came from Asia.. so maybe this is next!)
Are there any new make up trends our products that we should avoid?
Please avoid the raccoon eye makeup unless you are going for a Halloween party!
How do you give models that “dewy” Victoria’s Secret model look or that beachy skin look? What products do you reach for?
Try Laneige BB Cushion for the dewy look. Alternatively, you can use wet products with a glow effect over the face, after you put on the base.
What is the one brand/color nail polish you couldn’t live without?
Any black color is my staple!
Anything else you want to share?
Less is more when it comes to makeup!
How you can work with Hongling:
Hongling Lim is a talented makeup artist in Singapore. She works freelance so you can contact her to make an appointment. Check out more of her work on her Facebook page Makeup By Hongling and make sure to follow her on Instagram for behind-the-scenes glam, Singapore views, and awesome food photos. You can contact her via e-mail at [email protected] or call her at (+65) 94558681
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Rachel Jones is an American who left a career in nursing to live on the beaches on Goa, India two years ago where she is now a Thai masseuse, candle-maker, and travel writer. Her award winning website gives advice on the other 28 countries she's been to but has become the go-to site on India travel, focusing on off beat places & “glamorous travel”. Hippie in Heels has been featured in ELLE magazine & was voted by Flipkey as one of the top 25 female bloggers to follow this year. You can follow her adventures on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Google plus.
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