The Transformer - Michelle Shakeshaft

This week's Image Maker Michelle Shakeshaft has been painting faces since the age of 4! (Seriously she has, well sort of... lol) I was bowled over by her talent; her makeup application is flawless and absolutely stunning!

Michelle's Makeup Mantra is: "Cosmetics give you the ability to transform and express yourself every day. Did you wake up feeling a bit rebellious or are you feeling more soft and demure? Be that person for today. You can change it tomorrow, or this afternoon!" Keep reading to find out what Michelle believes it takes to make it as a makeup artist in the fashion industry, I'm certain you'll enjoy her candor just as much as I did. I love her passion and as always I left the punctuations and caps so you could feel it too!

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! How long have you been in the industry?

Michelle: 6 years

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! When did you know you wanted to be a makeup artist?

Michelle: I LOVED makeup since I was four years old (I even have a picture of me putting lipstick on my 2 year old sister). I was always experimenting with looks on myself and my friends. I decided to make it a career six years ago because I was not passionate about the career I was in. Best decision and career change EVER!

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! What inspires your work?

Michelle: EVERYTHING!!! Watching other artists, artwork, looks people wear everyday (good or bad), nature…..I was once driving during the fall season and was blown away by the different colors of the leaves and used those colors for a look……awesome! Even is another artist creates a look I’m not particularly fond of, something about it inspires me.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! What would you say are the biggest misconceptions about the industry and makeup artists especially those that work in music and fashion like yourself?

Michelle: That everyone is unapproachable and conceited. Granted, you have those lovely rays of sunshine, but I have found most people in this industry to be warm, fun and full of amazing energy.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! What other types of services do you provide?

Michelle: I can do light hair and styling.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! What advice do you have for someone new who is trying to break into the industry and wanting to work with celebrities?

Michelle: KEEP AT IT!!!!! There are tons of talented people in this industry….surround yourself with them and learn from them! TEST TEST TEST……them more shoots you do and faces you touch, the better you become. Also, be open to constructive criticism (or just criticism)… will help you grown as an artist. If we don’t want to become better….we will be stagnant.

As far as celebrities… best advice is BE YOURSELF! Don’t walk in acting star struck. I’ve seen that and it makes the situation uncomfortable.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! I read that you provide training, what type of training do you provide?

Michelle: I help train with Bobbi Brown Cosmetics. I assist the Education Executive in our basic and advance schools. I am also teaching a class on HD Makeup to a group of women in the Media.

Click here for more information on Michelle.

Ciao for now… Class is dismissed!

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A Day In The Life of a Star Barber - Johnny Cake

Marinate on this video of A Day In the Life of Celeb Barber Johnny Cake. Want to know what it takes to be an in-demand celebrity barber? Stay-tuned the interview's coming soon! ***Warning this video contains music which may contain some adult lyrics*** Follow Johnny's Twitter.

Johnny Cake the Barber (MY TIME) from Johnny Cake the barber on Vimeo.


The Haute Happy Stylist - Toye Adedipe

This week’s Image Maker Toye Adedipe is one HAUTE Fashion Stylist. Though his work screams TALENTED... he's quiet and humble. His six-word bio simply reads: "I'm a Fashion + Wardrobe Stylist... Happily"

Our introduction was a little different than the others. I was following him -- okay kind of “stalking” his page (twitter) checking out some of his work getting a feel of his style. Then one day while reading TheYBF I stumbled across these pictures from a Derek Blanks photo shoot of Chilli formerly of TLC, I instantly recognized the “signature aesthetic” so I sent him a tweet “is that you?” and sure enough it was him. If you’re on Twitter be sure to follow Toye’s tweets where he posts pictures of both low and high fashion on trend pieces that’ll make any stylnista swoon! Check out my interview with Toye, I’m telling you – you can feel the love and passion that he has for his craft through his words; I didn’t edit his quotation marks, exclamation points or his caps because I wanted you to feel that energy as well. Yes, the name is also Nigerian - total coincidence this time… Enjoy!

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! How long have you been in the industry?

Toye Adedipe: I started working on my portfolio about 7 years ago when I interned with another celebrity stylist- Big Learning Lesson! When it ended I jumped started my career by focusing on developing a book and surrounding myself around like-minded talent and my work started to "jump off" soon after college.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! When did you know you wanted to be a Stylist?

Toye Adedipe: LOL When I read an article on another Stylist that was doing "big things" but I didn't fall in LOVE with styling until after my third shoot or so... Styling takes a lot out of you and in a lot of ways, it is really "blue collar" work so when you get to the point when you want to quit and your soul won't let you; that’s when you know you've found your true calling!

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! I’ve seen some of your work, you are an amazing stylist and you definitely have a good eye for fashion, did you receive any formal education or training?

Toye Adedipe: Wow...Thank You! Yes! A lot of Stylists like to explain that they've had no formal training or education but -- I have! I graduated at the top of my class with a degree in Art and Design, Interned with a stylist while I was in college and read a lot of comic books as a little kid LOL. So my imagination and creative eye are both "CRAZY"!! My foundation is based on esthetic and art principals and I take advantage of it every chance I get. (As a Stylist) I apply it to the models and celebrities I work with and turn them into my own works of Art!

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! When was your first big break?

Toye Adedipe: Believe it or not it's when I declared "it" for myself and the universe just opened up for me! Photographer Tommy Chung was a big influence and so was another Fashion Stylist, Taneshia Alexander. They were my first big support group within the Fashion/Wardrobe Styling industry and they truly helped me to understand how the game works!

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! What inspires your work?

Toye Adedipe: "Normal" People, Art, Kids, Music, Pop Culture...

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! What would you say are the biggest misconceptions about the industry and fashion styling?

Toye Adedipe: That you get paid a lot of money when you first start out or that it's a glamorous lifestyle... Yes, it’s true that if you stick with it and you’re good at what you do - these things will come but there may be times when you'll have to rely on other talents to carry you through the ritual of "paying your dues". Just remember that you’re "blessed" and that you’re “worthy", and what has been bestowed upon you is a unique opportunity to live and stand in your greatness! Push through!

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! Wow! That’s some great advice. So are you available to style for individuals or do you predominately style for print work?

Toye Adedipe: I'm a "round the way" Stylist so I style for EVERYONE! I love people and people love me - I'm a bit of a quiet force, I don't have a loud or over the top personality and my demeanor is very laid back so when it comes to styling I truly let the creative forces out into the clothing and concentrate on being a service provider that lets my work speak for itself. Whether it’s a Model, CEO, or Celebrity that I'm working with I put the creative energy into the development of their look and personal style.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! What advice do you have for someone new who is trying to break into the industry and wanting to work with celebrities?

Toye Adedipe: Study your craft and incorporate a signature style of your own into it. Don't be afraid to let the "Art" of your work have a presence- You are a “co-creator” of style and the competition is steep, so keep in mind that BRANDING your work will help you have a competitive edge over the next!

Also try to find a mentor or someone you feel has similar skill set to you and observe them. Notice what they do right and most importantly notice what can be improved upon.

I'm learning just how powerful and important it is to keep your thoughts shifted to positive outcomes even if you haven't quit reached the place you want to be yet. Thoughts of success are so much more powerful then thoughts of spiraling turmoil so shift the way you think into the way you want to become and I PROMISE YOU ... it will come! And if you need me, I'm here...Shine!

Check out more of Toye's work or check his Twitter.

Ciao for now… Class is dismissed!

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Nail It! – Tricoci University of Beauty Culture **UPDATED**

No matter where you live or where you’re from the Tricoci name is not only synonymous with beauty and spa but excellence in customer service.

That level of service is not by chance it's made. Where is that culture of customer service excellence is born?

Well... I had the opportunity to find out when I toured the Chicago NW campus. I went to the school for a tour to learn more about their Nail Technology program (which I do plan on attending in the fall), however when I arrived there was another potential student who was there inquiring about the cosmetology program so we did the tour together.

The school is HUGE and completely state of the art. All of the students seemed to be having a great time. We went into practically every classroom and had the opportunity to meet essentially everyone that was there on staff that day including the General Manager (School Principal).

Tuition at the University is affordable, they offer all three programs: Esthetics, Cosmetology and Nail Technology and financial aid is available.

Daniel the Admissions Coordinator was a hoot, I could go on the tour again just to hang out with him.

Visit the Tricoci University's website for more information.


So, I did it! This past Thursday (6/18/09) I registered at Tricoci U! I paid my deposit and everything. Nail Technician class starts on August 12th, however orientation is the previous Saturday morning. Hmmm... I forgot to ask -- I'm wondering if we'll get our Kits on that Saturday. I'm so incredibly excited about the Kit, it's an OPI "preferred" school so the kit is filled with OPI professional nail products. It comes in this cool black rolling case. There's also an opportunity to apply for an OPI Scholarship. I'm all over that, hey money is money and that's a month's and half tuition. It's all going to go by really quickly the program is 350 hours and 4 months so before the end of the year I'll be fineto! Everyone wants to know if I want to start "doing nails" the answer to that question is yes and no. But that's another post for another day.

Thanks again Daniel (he's so incredibly nice) I'm excited and looking forward to the start of classes.

Ciao for now... Class is dismissed!

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Your SHORTCUT To Becoming a Celebrity Hair and Makeup Artist **Updated**

Celebrity hairstylist Diana Schmidtke (pronounced Schmidt-Key), has released SHORTCUTS a guide to breaking into the world of hairstyling and makeup artistry. Diana is a freelance hair stylist and makeup artist specializing in men’s grooming, and the book is a first hand account of her experience as a working hair and makeup artist. Diana openly shares her story with the readers including how she received her first big break and how she continues to build a reputation as one of the industry’s best. Along with her step-by-step account on breaking into the industry (education, testing, portfolio building, agency and unions) the book is sprinkled with personal accounts of Diana's experience in the industry, her passion for the craft and her experiences working with media figures. I personally love the way her celebrity mentions are relevant to the story she is telling and not just random episodes of name dropping.

In addition the book answers questions like the difference between union and non-union work, there is a sort of “pop quiz” to assist you in determining if your passion lies more in the fashion and music or television and film. The field of Special FX artistry is also covered in a fair amount of detail as well, as a lot of books tend to ignore this very lucrative segment of the industry.

If you are even the slightest bit uncertain as to whether a career in hair and makeup is for you, or if you are unsure if you would be more happy working in music and fashion or television and film, you will definitely find SHORTCUTS interesting, informative and inspiring.

I definitely have a feeling that this book will find its place in history right along side Crystal Wright’s book. Nice work coming from a fellow Chicagoan!

Preview the book!

Video by Scissor Boy



So, I promised I would update this post once I actually finished reading Shortcuts. I have to tell you I was not disappointed. Diana really gave a step by step account of what it really takes to break into the industry and become a Hairstylist and or Makeup Artist in Fashion and Entertainment. She covers everything from your educational requirements to how to get assisting jobs, how to test and prepare for a photo shoot in order to get photos for your portfolio. There is even a section on how to choose the right photos from your photo shoots. She discusses the importance of having a ‘real’ model and a great team (stylist and photographer). Other important areas she covers are your website, comp card, resumes, reels, unions, agencies and most importantly getting your money after a job. By her every account, you know that this is not an easy business to break into, it is not for the slacker or thin-skinned. Those who are serious about breaking into the industry will take this book to heart and use it to prepare themselves. Those that were expecting a quick ride to the top complete with only glitz and glamor will find themselves thinking twice.

I love that she gives the readers real life examples of situations that she’s found herself in and how she over came those challenges. In addition there’s a detailed list of kit essentials, and sample of all the forms that you should have, a thorough glossary and listing of agencies from east to west. The sixty bucks the book costs is a small price to pay for all the of information in this book, I trust that you’ll find invaluable.

Ciao for now… once again, Class is dismissed!


Education by Design - Design Essentials

Since launching this blog I've received numerous email from vendors requesting I "review" their products. Product reviews are good, but because Beauty Schooled! is geared towards the professional and is education centric I’ve been reluctant to post product reviews that have no real educational backing.

Despite that I have also received dozens of email from new stylists across the country who specialize in ethnic hair care and work in salons as a “booth” renter (independent contractor) looking far a beauty brand that provides educational support. For those that aren't familiar with this set-up... In this situation the stylist pays the salon owner each month or week depending on the arrangement for a "chair" or space to work. The stylist is not considered an employee of the salon and is responsible for all of their own supplies, equipment, product and advanced education. There is rarely any salon mandated educational training outside of possibly salon safety procedures.

Many product companies require a huge opening order fee, something that the average new stylist cannot afford. As a result, the stylist is left to purchase product from their local beauty supply, trade shows or vendors that rep a hodgepodge of lines with no real educational protocol to help the stylist grow their businesses. Not only does it dilute the stylist's brand but it makes it difficult for them to build a loyal following and compete with their industry peers that work in salons that carry products with strong consumer recognition backed by a solid educational program.

Design Essentials from The McBride Research Laboratories is a company that provides a complete professional product line supported by a sound educational program for the stylists that use their products.

Design Essential's Education Team stretches across the United States, Europe, and the Caribbean islands with it's headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia and has 30 years of combined Professional Salon Industry experience. All members of their Education Team have a current cosmetology license and have participated in the McBride Research Laboratories intensive annual training, so you're dealing with a team of hair professionals who know product and hair, not a fleet of sales people.

I recently had the opportunity to speak with Rebecca Mariolis the Director of Education for Design Essentials. I really enjoyed our conversation. Do you know that feeling you get when you’re speaking to someone that really loves what they do? That’s how I felt when speaking to Rebecca, her passion for industry and education was so obvious that it filtered through the telephone! What better person to head the education helm?

Over at Design Essentials each of them have a mantra if you will -- that they call “Strand of Success” Ms. Mariolis’ is… Each of us has been blessed with talent. People saw potential in me – even when I couldn’t see it – and gave me opportunities. It was key that we share what’s been given to us. That right there embodies everything that Beauty Schooled! is about so I was smitten with this company from the start.

The various Design Essential lines within the brand embody everything that a stylist needs to remain competitive in the industry. Products include both back bar (relaxer and color treatments, styling aids, tools and equipment) and retail for your client’s at home care.

As a Design Essential stockist in addition to the yearly educational training conference your local distributor will hold various educational workshops through out the year and are available to meet with you one-on-one to address your needs.

Take your business to the next level by investing in a product line that fosters education for its stylists as a foundation for your growth.

For more information on Design Essentials or to find a distributor in your area call Toll Free: 800.535.8683 or visit their website.

I will continue to post more brands as I discover them...

Ciao for now... Class is dismissed!

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Dream Girl - Celebrity Makeup Artist Tia Dantzler

It seems as though I start every Image Maker introduction with… I met the most amazingly talented, kind and humble Makeup Artist, Hair or Fashion Stylist on Twitter, well that’s because it’s true! Likewise... Ms. Tia Dantzler is no exception doling out daily doses of “Tia’s Tips” to her adoring fans and aspiring artists. Though I’m very familiar with Tia’s work -- (Think Jennifer Hudson more specifically her most recent cover of the June Essence) I was surprised that she also attended my makeup alma mater Columbia College in Chicago. I won’t give away too much keep reading to find out what Ms. Dantzler had to share with us on her steadily rising career as well as some great tips to launch your career as a makeup artist.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! How long have you been in the industry?

Tia Dantzler: I’ve been working as a Makeup Artist since 2002.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! When did you know you wanted to become a makeup artist?

Tia Dantzler: I always had a love for makeup however; it wasn’t until after doing makeup for a Bride, did I have the feeling that it just “felt right”.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! Did you receive any formal education prior to launching your career?

Tia Dantzler: Yes, I enrolled in the Makeup Artistry Program at Columbia College, in which I participated in five required courses for the program.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! What would you say are the biggest misconceptions about the industry and makeup artists specifically?

Tia Dantzler: One of the biggest misconceptions that I’ve observed is how easy and glamorous the road might look launching into the industry. This is a very competitive industry and rejection is a reality, I had to develop a thick skin quickly. I had to master my people skills because working in this industry requires you to interact with a lot of different people and personalities. It’s through trial and error that I’ve evolved into the makeup artist that I am.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! What was your first big break?

Tia Dantzler: My first big break was when I got the telephone call to fill in for another makeup artist for Sen. Jesse Jackson.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! What’s a typical working day like for you, if there is such thing as typical for you?

Tia Dantzler: A normal working day could be working with a Top Noted Fashion Photographer on a photoshoot then heading to an Award Show to complete the day.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! It seems that every up and coming makeup and hairstylists wants to work with celebrities. What advice do you have for someone new who is trying to break into the industry and wanting to work with celebrities?

Tia Dantzler: My advice for aspiring makeup artist would be to volunteer with photographers to work on your portfolio. Say “yes” to as much work as you can! View every assignment as an opportunity for growth. Lastly, first impressions are important because you will not only be remembered for your makeup skills but also how easy you were to work with.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! Do you hire assistants, or mentor young artists or provide any workshops or training?

Tia Dantzler: Yes, I have hired assistants depending on the makeup needs, and I am always on the lookout for great assistants. My makeup workshop is in the beginning stages however, I’m hoping this fall I can get started.

Click here to contact Tia regarding her upcoming workshops and possibly assisting her on her next big shoot.

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Brows 101 - Eyebrow Shaping Workshop with Elke Von Freudenberg

Celebrity Eyebrow Groomer Elke Von Freudenberg is a rock star eyebrow stylist after my own heart, her talent is unquestionable and though I’ve never met Elke personally I have seen some of her work first hand. In addition to being ┼▒ber talented I understand that she's down to earth and very friendly. Everybody loves Elke!

Elke’s eyebrow grooming skills are akin to true artistry. Instead of relying on brow stencils, she uses her subject's features -- including facial and eye shape to determine the best brow style for them. Lucky for you Elke is ready to spill all of her eyebrow taming secretes in an amazing three hour workshop! This seminar is perfect for the Makeup artist, Aesthetician or student looking to perfect their eyebrow shaping and grooming skills.Elke will be hosting her three hour Model Brow™ Seminar in New York during the month of July. This information packed workshop will cover Elke's fail proof techniques used to create The Model Brow™ including:

*How to Predict Brow Trends
*Brow Analysis System Design & Shaping
*The No-Stencil Approach
*Different Brow Makeup Applications
*…and much more!

Register by June 24th and $30.00 of your class fee will go towards Pro Artist purchase of The Model Brow™ Collection. The seminar is bound to fill up quickly so don’t delay! Click here for additional information or to register today.

Janet Rufin's Parlor
25 W. 19th Street
New York, NY 10011
13th Jul, 2009, from 05:00 PM

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Brushed for Greatness - Celebrity Airbrush Artist Synthe

This week’s Image Maker the lovely Celebrity Airbrush Makeup Artist Sythe is a consummate professional who hails from Europe. Sythe is a multifaceted makeup artist, who’s found an incredible niche in the world of airbrush body art. Her work is absolutely amazing, her subjects wear her art like a second skin, it’s hard to believe that most times they aren’t wearing any clothing! I had the opportunity to catch up with the busy artist who’s also in the middle of launching a Go Green Cosmetic Tour, a traveling training workshop for beauty professionals

Sythe, spills on what inspires her work, why continuing education and being a professional is important to maintain longevity in this business.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! How long have you been in the industry?

SYNTHE: Over 10 years.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! When did you know you wanted to be a makeup artist?

SYNTHE: When I was about 12 years old living in Germany.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! I’ve seen some of your body art, amazing is all I can say. How did you get into that area of artistry, also did it require any formal education or training?

SYNTHE: I got into body painting because I was requested to assist with a body painting event. When I arrived at the venue, I was absolutely amazed at what I saw, artists bringing imaginations to fruition. And, it was then that I realized that I could paint outside the box. No, this did not require any formal training. However, I am an natural artist.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! What inspires your work?

SYNTHE: People, places and things inspire me. I am attracted to all things amazingly unique.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! What would you say are the biggest misconceptions about the industry and makeup artists especially those that work in music and fashion like yourself?

SYNTHE: The biggest misconception? Having a makeup brush does not make you a makeup artist.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! What other types of services do you provide?

SYNTHE: I am an Airbrush Makeup Artist, Body Painter and Educator with unlimited talents. My experience expands beyond providing cosmetic services for photo shoots, weddings, videos and live productions. Just ask!

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! What advice do you have for someone new who is trying to break into the industry and wanting to work with celebrities?

SYNTHE: Come into this industry with a vision. Be willing to invest in YOUR business, take risks and learn from others. There is always room for you.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! I read that you provide training, what type of training do you provide?

SYNTHE: I provide airbrush training and business building skills.

BEAUTY SCHOOLED! Thanks for taking the time to answer some questions for us, but before you go can you tell us about the Go Green Tour?

SYNTHE: But of course! The Going Green Tour is an amazing Cosmetic Tour for Hair and Makeup Professionals. Myself, Synthe and one of my industry partners, James Wealthy are traveling to various cities sharing information and providing education for individuals in the beauty industry. Workshops are 2 days, hands on and include 3 innovative techniques unique to the beauty business: The hands off approach to makeup application through airbrushing, removing unwanted facial hair using 100% cotton thread and individual eyelash application using the all NEW tear free adhesive.

Be sure to visit Synthe's page for more information on the Go Green Tour and to view photographs of more of her amazing work.

Ciao for now... Class is dismissed!

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