Never Goin' Back Dallas Premiere - Oak Cliff Film Festival 2018

 
                  image: Clay Grier

                image: Clay Grier

Last Sunday, a feature film I worked on had it's hometown premiere at the Oak Cliff Film Festival, in Dallas! Never Goin' Back directed by Augustine Frizzell, starring Maia Mitchell and Cami Morrone, is a teen comedy (rated R) about two girls just trying to make it to the beach. I was the head of makeup for this independent movie, which filmed around the metroplex in the hot, hot Texas summer of 2017. Movies require a great deal of manpower, team work and skill. Every film I work on is different, but a few things remain the same: From pre-production until the camera rolls on Day 1, butterflies take up residence in my stomach. I wrap the project feeling like I have grown my family by 30 people. Thirdly, I cry the first time I see the finished movie, every time. All of it is reason enough to continue on this chase after my creative dreams. The first bit of exciting news that we received about Never Goin' Back was that it was accepted into Sundance Film Festival, earlier this year. That was exciting in a major way! Check out what they wrote on it, here (with a brief shout out to the makeup department head towards the end).

On films, I really get to work closely with my director to create looks for each of our characters. These particular looks changed according to what each character was going through over the course of the storyline. Though, I won't give away too much of the story, nor will I go in to too much detail about how their looks change - here is what I created for our two leads, Angela (right) and Jesse (left) 

   Maia Mitchell  as Angela

Maia Mitchell as Angela

   Cami Morrone  as Jesse

Cami Morrone as Jesse

It was really important for Angela and Jesse to feel like they are real people, not Maia and Cami, causing a ruckus in Garland, Tx as you read this. Obviously, both actors are naturally stunning, so making them appear any other way was nearly impossible. And I wouldn't really strive for that, anyway, not for this movie. We wanted to play up their youthfulness, while not creating something too character-y. Avoiding glittery eyelids was a real struggle! (Any 90s kids out there?).
I had a few points of interest that were most important to me. Firstly, anyone who has worked with me, knows that I am all about skin. If someones skin isn't in the right place, it's hard for me to believe the rest of the makeup. Even as the makeup changed, skin was priority. I also kept the eyebrows on both girls full and natural, to further embrace their youthful characteristics. Cami actually has very dark brows, naturally, so I ran a touch of an ash blonde brow gel through her brow hairs to imitate more of her new growth near her scalp. 
Which takes us in to another big player these character looks - hair color. Yep! Anastasia Strattan came to the rescue there, and interpreted exactly what we wanted. She is a color master, folks - and part mindreader, I think. The biggest transformation was on Cami (Jesse), I love her 'Jesse' hair the most. Anastasia created a naturally platinum, sun-bleached set of locks, growing into more of a mature, sandy blonde. The grown out platinum hints that she has outgrown her innocence and purity. Something so subtle to our viewers, but makes a massive subconscious impact! Its like poetry to my heart. Maia (Angela) had some color treatment as well, to give her rich brunette hair a bit of dimension, which really shows in just the right light. Because brunettes like to have fun, too, y'all! 

  image: Clay Grier

image: Clay Grier

Never Goin' Back hits theaters August 3, 2018 nationwide! I am so excited to share this project with everyone. Though this is a rated R film, there was a high standard of professionalism set from the time we touched down on the first day of filming. We had a hilarious time behind the scenes! I am very proud to say that this crew was respectful, mature and considerate of each other, especially our talent, regardless of the movie's content.

I want to give a shout out to the visionary and our director, Augustine Frizzell, whose boldness has started a wildfire of inspiration. I am overwhelmed with gratitude to have worked on a project that meant so much to her. I am honored to be listed among our extremely talented cast and the hard-working crew that brought this script to life. I wouldn't trade those 27 days on set for anything. I have already seen the completed movie, and cried, and I hope you will, too!

Until it's release, view the official A24 red-band trailer here - 

Love and light, beauties! xx
Meagan

 

Au Naturel.... kinda

A few weeks ago, I posted my thoughts on Duchess Meghan Markle’s royal wedding makeup. That spurred a conversation about natural makeup, which is one of my favorite conversations! 

One of the comments I hear the most, from women in my chair, goes a little something like this: “I don’t really know what I’m doing, I just sort of slap this on and hope it looks good.” While I always appreciate a free-spirited mentality that allows our heart to lead our movements, ‘Que Sera, Sera’ is a better song than makeup technique.

 

I hope after this post, you will see yourself as a work of art.

 

Think of who you take care of on a daily basis: A longtime client? Your spouse and/or a whole family? Or perhaps you spend quite a bit of time in your garden. Whatever fills your day, YOU should be on that list of people that you take care of. One way I take care of myself is allowing time to get ready in the mornings. I may have 10 to 20 minutes, or if I get to really stretch it out, one hour. I realize everyone has different responsibilities, so do what works for you. Surprisingly enough, taking 3 minutes (yes, just three) to cleanse your face, moisturize and apply an spf, or night cream, is an easy way to start and end your day by showing yourself some appreciation. All it takes is six combined minutes per day to tell yourself that you are worthy of love and care - and you’re worth a whole lot more than that! 

Now that we have established that you are worth the time, here are my favorite natural makeup tips as promised. 

 
IMG_9784.jpg

SIX STEPS TO A NATURAL MAKEUP LOOK

Makeup Meagan D'Von
Photographer Max Kütz
Wardrobe Stylist KJ Moody

 

1. Hydrate + Protect

image.png

This is the most important step in your makeup routine. I know I have said it before, and I will continue to do so: Great skin = great makeup. Find a moisturizer that is right for your skin type. You will apply this immediately after your A.M. cleanse, then follow it with an SPF that is safe for your face. Be sure to either include an eye cream, before your SPF, or just take your facial moisturizer all the way up to your lower lashes, and onto your eyelid. That is a very delicate area of the face, and it needs all the TLC we can give it!
I love this dynamic daily duo from Circadia. I apply half a pump of the Aquaporin Hydrating Cream after cleansing, then one pump of the Light Day Sunscreen (so not greasy, it's a dream). Bonus: The Aquaporin doubles as my nighttime moisturizer! :)

2. Neutralize + Conceal

This step will take some practice in the art of moderation. We have all been there, we start with a tiny bit of product, and end up using half of the tube by the time we are happy. READ THIS: Perfection is ONLY achieved in photoshop. There are no exceptions. But we can get you to a beautiful, realistic place. For this step, I have a few options that I play with, depending on my day.

kl3.jpg

- RMCA Foundation/Concealer - This is a vegetable wax-based product that contains a punch of pigment. So, truly, a little goes a long way.
- Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Concealer - This contains micronized pigments, which means it is packed with color as well. I repeat, packed.
- Elf Cosmetics Under Eye Concealer & Highlighter - This was my beloved #1 choice for this step until I learned that this brand habitually rips off independent makeup artists and makeup brands on the come up without any intention of crediting or compensating them for the copied/stolen ideas. R I P ELF. You are more than welcome to consider this brand/product as an option, let’s just not talk about  ;)

 I have a shade in each of these products, with a peachy base, for my under-eye area that does not look like my foundation color. For the sake of natural makeup days, conceal just the under-eye area with 'darkness' or 'discoloration'. This is not drawing a giant triangle under your eye and onto your cheek. This is strategically placing the corrective color (your concealer) only in the small area that needs correcting. If you do not have 'dark circles' or 'discoloration' in this area of your face, replace this step by singing praise to your God because you are hashtag blessed -- and don't tell anyone as you may gain acquire a few jealous enemies. 
If this concealer cuts the darkness, but does not brighten as you would like, apply a light touch of your foundation on top of it. I mean a tiny dot, inner corner of the eye, stretch that small amount over the concealer, blend the edges with your ring finger and never look back. If you think too much about this, you will end up with a full face of foundation and there is just no coming back from that! Trust me. 

3. Powder

Yes, I said it: POWDER! Because  you are prepped, moisturized and hydrated, the next step is lightly powdering your complexion to even out your skin tone, control excess shine and  add a touch of color to your complexion. Use a big fluffy brush, for a featherlight layer, or a denser brush (like a blush brush) for slightly more coverage. This step, as the last one, is optional. Some of you just don't need it, or prefer it. If you're like me, and you don't mind another layer of product, try these powders on for size. 

300.JPG
- Full Coverage, Matte Finish: MAC Cosmetics,  Studio Fix Powder Plus Foundation
This is my personal top pick, because I have acne scars that I need to hide + I am excessively oily.
- Medium Coverage, Satin Finish: Mineral Fusion, Pressed Powder Mineral Foundation
- No Added Coverage, Semi-Matte Finish: Laura Mercier Translucent Setting Powder
- No Added Coverage, Oil-Control: MAC Cosmetics, Blot Pressed Powder

4. Define + Hold

Your brows need a little lovin' after you have powdered, trust me. Whether you use a clear brow mascara or a tinted gel. Love your brows as they are on these days and limit them to one product that will treat them right on the first pass. (“Do I discuss my brow journey in a future post?” she thought to herself.)

Untitled.png

My top pick for brow products costs a whopping $7 at Target.
- NYX Tinted Brow Mascara
I had to get used to this product and learn how to use it. But now that I understand that it carries loads of color payoff, I love it more than the high end products I have tried. Plus, the hold is amazing!
- Senna Brow Fix X
Senna is the leading makeup line in eyebrow products. This Brow Fix X is available in clear, for those of you who don't necessarily need the help of a tinted brow gel. 

 

Starting with the middle, or arch of your eyebrows, comb the brow gel through in an up-and over motion.  Without reloading product into the brush, comb excess gel through the front end of your brows. Allow the product to fully set  before adding another product like a powder, or pencil. Although, I challenge you to try the brow gel alone for a couple of days! :)

5. Lashes Out

Mascara is a very personal experience. As a mascara junkie, I have a few mascaras that I hold dear, and favor above the rest. I don't believe my product suggestions will contribute to your overall makeup look as much as the technique, so let’s talk a little about that:

1. Lightly coat the ends of your eyelashes with mascara. One or two passes, on each eye, will do.
2. Without reapplying product to the wand, use the pointed tip of the mascara wand and 'wiggle' the brush into the base of your lashes as you pull away from your eye.
3. Still without reapplying more product to the brush, run the width of the brush through your lashes to soften and separate. 

6. Pucker up + Polish

This is another step that is very personal, as well as dependent on your lip condition (whether they’re dry, or chapped) and daily tasks (so you need something long-wearing or something that will condition and absorb into the lips). I generally finish my look with a hydrating, colorless lip gloss. I also love a creamy lipstick, similar to my natural lip color, to add a bit of interest and color to the overall look!  Play with this step the most. Your makeup will take on several different styles depending on what you add to your lips. 

 

Have fun, beauties! xx

Meagan 

We need to talk.

How are you?

Friend, last week... was a week. I do not have a new blog for you. However, I want to check in with you to make sure that you are okay. Like, really okay in your heart and mind and spirit. 

With the unexpected passing of, both, Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain, I am reminded of the importance of making sure that my loved ones are doing well - and if you are not, that you know you have a safe place to lay out your feelings, fears and frustrations. 

I understand that there are dark places that our mind can take us. Places that, although are just illusions, seem very real. At times, I have struggled to keep my mind out of those places. I know the fight all too well. Though mine may be very different from the battles of others, please know that you are not alone. 

If you feel close to the edge, like you  might not win this one, please ask someone to join your squadron. It is O.K. to have help from someone else when you cannot help yourself.


Talk to someone you trust. Talk to me.
 

If you are in a place where you do not feel you can trust another person with the weight of your troubles, contact a third party that is ready to listen and help you sort through your thoughts. There are people equipped to shield you, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. No judgement.
All you have to do is call 1-800-273-8255.

It doesn't cost anything to get help, but it could save you (and those who care for you) everything. 


You are loved, so so special and deserve the victory that is waiting for you on the other side of  your inner war.

You can win this. 


Love you, 
Meagan