Archive for the ‘Makeup’ Category

There are countless schools for makeup artists out there, and we know how overwhelming it can be to choose one that’s right for you. There are so many things to consider when making this important decision, and you want to be sure nothing is overlooked on the path to your dream career.

Here at QC we pride ourselves on our comprehensive, online courses, and we think our School might be the perfect fit for you!

Schools for makeup artists

We’re Online!

Our courses are designed in a way that allows our students to complete them entirely online. Our interactive Online Student Center gives each student access to a private account. There they have access to downloadable course guides and assignment templates, as well as a forum where they can interact with their fellow students – it’s a great place to connect and get discussions going. We’ve also added a Career Center to the Online Student Center, where we regularly provide and update resources for writing resumes and cover letters, as well as tips for pulling off a perfect interview. Since everything is online, students have the luxury of studying from any place at any time.

Study at Your Own Pace

There are no set deadlines for submitting assignments to the School. Our aim is to make learning convenient, and we encourage each individual student to fit the course into their own schedule in a way that best suits them.  For example, some students are able to complete our Makeup Artistry course in 2-4 months, while others have taken up to three years. We’re not worried about how long it takes you to finish, as long as you’re fully grasping the concepts and producing quality work. We want you to feel fully prepared to enter into the makeup industry as a confident professional.

Comprehensive Learning

Even though we’re a distance education School providing courses online, we ensure that each assignment is as practical and hands-on as possible. In our makeup artistry courses from QC, students learn makeup application through hands-on practice. Our courses include hours of instructional video of professional makeup artists at work. Students are instructed to watch the instructional videos, and then go on to recreate the tutorials/looks on models of their own.

Just as in a normal classroom, you will be working closely with an instructor who will critique your assignments and monitor your progress through the course. Celebrity makeup artist Nathan Johnson is just one of the qualified tutors on our team excited to help you get started in the world of makeup!

Evolving Course Content

Here at QC Makeup Academy we’re always striving to grow and expand on our courses. We’re constantly looking to further develop and build on what we have, producing furthering education courses like our new Pro-Makeup Workshop. The learning never stops with QC!

We hope this has helped you on your search for makeup schools for makeup artists. If we’ve piqued your interest, please don’t hesitate to get in touch! Give our friendly student support specialists a call today at 1-800-267-1829 or shoot us a quick email at



July 11, 2013 10:05 am

The Busy Woman’s Makeup Kit

No matter what day job you have, you probably find your schedule pretty jam packed. We’re constantly on the go these days. And with so many people depending on us and so many stresses on our time, it can be all too easy to neglect our beauty routines.  Today we’re sharing the busy woman’s makeup kit in an effort to spread easy and effortless beauty to all! With the right tools, we bet you’ll find it’s easier than you thought to squeeze in a bit of pampering each day.

Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer SPF 20

This is our go-to product. These moisturizers are lightweight, but offer more coverage than most for that perfect ‘no-makeup’ look. It leaves us with a nice soft glow that we either leave as is or dust over with a light setting powder. There is a decent amount of SPF in it so it’s a really great choice for the summer months.

Cover Girl Invisible Concealer

If your skin is in need of a bit more coverage we love Cover Girl’s Invisible Concealers. The formula is great for all over use, from under eye circles to blemishes, and we find it blends well with a variety of foundations, tinted moisturizers and setting powders. It’s quick and easy to use, and one of our staples for sure.

Essence Fix & Matte Loose Powder

Makeup Forever’s HD Microfinish Powder will always be our number one, but we’ve recently come across this dupe from the wallet-friendly brand Essence. We have to say, it comes in a very close second. This transparent powder adapts to any skin tone, and truly keeps our makeup in place and looking great for as long as we need. If your skin is a bit oilier, we recommend stashing the Essence All About Matt compact powder in your purse. Trust us, you’re going to love this stuff.

Sephora Jumbo Eye Pencil

Okay, so admittedly we’re total suckers for a good liquid liner, but we know that not everyone has the time to commit to it every day. We find ourselves picking up Sephora’s Jumbo Eye Pencils more and more throughout the work week. Super easy to apply and with great staying power, it’s a great alternative to liquid eyeliner. This pencil is also a great tool for tightlining.

Maybelline Great Lash Waterproof Mascara

Mascara is one product we don’t hesitate to splurge on. Elongating and filling out the lashes to frame the eyes is something we can’t leave the house without doing. We just don’t feel ‘done’ without it. Maybelline’s Mascara is a classic and a goodie. It’s waterproof, long-wearing, and goes on without clumping. Check, check and check!

Tarte Cosmetics Amazonian Clay 12-hour blush

This blush is extremely long wearing, and so lovely to apply thanks to its ultra-smooth texture. It is highly pigmented, so you really don’t need much. Just a quick swipe across each cheek and you’ll be good for the rest of the day. Tarte offers a great range of hues, though we find the shade ‘Peaceful’ to be especially flattering on a wide range of skin tones.

Clinique Chubby Stick Moisturizing Lip Color Balm

These sticks are jammed full of moisturizing shea and mango butters. They smell absolutely divine and leave a pretty tint on our lips that lasts longer than we expected from something called a ‘balm.’ Our favorite part? It’s the easiest and quickest thing to apply. Just swipe and go!

Urban Decay Setting Sprays

Urban Decay has done a marvelous job of creating setting sprays for every skin type – and the best part is they actually work. Our favorite is ‘de-slick’. It’s our go-to setting spray in the summer, and it works well on all skin types. We spritz a few sprays evenly over our faces at the very end of our morning beauty routine. It keeps our makeup in place for hours on end and stops us from looking powdery. This product gets the QC seal of approval!



get caras look

Cara Delevingne is the most in-demand model right now. With a fresh face, bushy eyebrows, and a distinct look – she’s been the choice to walk for countless high end designers and has started a frenzy in the beauty world. We’re in love with her pouty lips and fearless take on fashion and makeup. Follow our guide to get Cara Delevingne’s look for summer and look fresh faced and runway-ready in no time at all. Pair the following makeup tips with sleek straightened hair or a low pony tail for the complete Cara makeover!


See our inspiration image at


Cara is all about bold makeup choices while keeping a fresh, luminous complexion. We’d start off this look by applying a lightweight, moisturizing primer like the Smashbox Photo Finish Hydrating Foundation Primer. We’d then reach for Urban Decay Naked Skin Weightless Ultra Definition Liquid Makeup to achieve an even complexion and HD finish – perfect for the runway, or snapping some photos while out with friends! We’d recommend using a beauty blender or buffing brush to really work the product into the skin and get an even, line-free effect.


Once the face is primed and foundation has been applied, we’d go back in and tackle any blemishes or discolorations with a creamy concealer like the Bobbi Brown Creamy Concealer Kit. We prefer applying foundation prior to concealer so that you can a) use less product and b) see what really needs to be concealed and what disappears with just the foundation. The less product you can use, the longer it will last and the more natural it will look.


The last step for this part would be to set the foundation and concealer with a lightweight ultra fine setting powder like Make Up For Ever HD Microfinish Powder or a look-locking setting mist like Urban Decay All Nighter Long-Lasting Makeup Setting Spray. Keep in mind that a powder will create a matte effect whereas setting spray will lock in the luminous finish of the foundation.


As for the brows, we recommend shading them in just a teensy bit and providing them with more shape using a gel like Benefit Cosmetics Speed Brow. Cara has thick, in-your-face brows, so feel free to grab your favorite brow pencil if you feel a little more definition is needed.


For eyes, we like a matte champagne shadow or a simple swipe of tinted eyeshadow primer (Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion in “Sin” does the trick just right). Finish the eyes with two swipes of your favorite mascara in dark brown or black.


Finally, decide what lip color you want to go with. We like mixing MAC Impassioned and MAC Viva Glam Nicki Minaj (pink) to get a color much like the one shown above. Remember to begin with a liner and apply the lipstick using a brush to avoid the color bleeding onto the skin around the lips. If you’d like, you can spritz a little setting mist onto the lip area to really lock it in.

There you have it, the complete Cara makeover for summer. What do you think of the tips? Would you recommend any other products to achieve it? Let us know in a comment!


June 28, 2013 9:00 am

Best foundation for summer

 Best Foundation For Summer

Summer can take a serious toll on your foundation – from causing powder to cake to making your foundation transfer onto your sunglasses and everything else your face touches. If you live somewhere that experiences both ultra cold and super warm weather, chances are that you just can’t get away with using the same foundation throughout summer that you do in the winter. That’s okay, though, because we’ve compiled a short list to help you find your best foundation for summer.

1. NARS Sheer Glow Foundation – $44

NARS Sheer Glow Foundation comes in a large variety of shades and has a consistency perfect for the summer’s warmth. I recommend applying it with a dampened Beauty Blender or other domed sponge for a flawless finish and lightweight coverage. It’ll even out your skin tone without clogging your pores, and appears to just melt into your skin, providing just the right amount of coverage with a very small amount of product. I recommend using Make Up For Ever HD Finishing Powder to set it, or any other ultra fine powder that is talc-free.

2. YSL Touche Éclat Foundation – $55

Although this lightweight, luminous formula foundation from Yves Saint Laurent is a little pricey – it’s worth it if you’re able to splurge. Your skin will look glowing all day long with just the right amount of coverage. The foundation comes with a built-in SPF 19, so you’ll be both protected and gorgeous.

3. Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer SPF 20 Oil Free – $43

If your skin’s feeling dried out and you love an SPF/foundation mix – this tinted moisturizer is for you. A little goes a long way with this product, and it blends like a dream. It’ll leave you with sheer coverage and a natural glow, so you can spend less time worrying about your complexion and more time enjoying the summer sun. We love this product for all the beach babes out there!

4. Clinique Moisture Surge Tinted Moisturizer – $27

Clinique is the choice for sensitive faces and those looking for more affordable yet high quality products. Their Moisture Surge Tinted Moisturizer is no exception. Yet again, a little goes a long way and will give you an even complexion, natural appearance, and that “no makeup” look everyone tries for in the summer.

What’s your favorite foundation for summer? Let me know in a comment! Thanks for reading. 🙂


June 24, 2013 8:00 am

How To Do Natural Looking Makeup

how to do natural looking makeup

Everyone knows what I’m talking about when I refer to the “no makeup” look. Of course, a lot of people aren’t sure how to achieve this ultra natural look without going accidentally overboard. The no makeup, or natural makeup look, is all about letting natural beauty shine through and only really evening out complexion, hiding blemishes, and emphasizing the eyes. Read on to learn how to do natural looking makeup!

Natural looking makeup starts with a good base. For the “no makeup” look, I would recommend going with a light but build-able coverage – something like NARS Sheer Glow. This will allow you to let natural beauty marks like freckles show through while being able to build up the coverage to cover any imperfections – like a minor break out, scar, or dark circles. Apply with a dampened sponge (I love the Beauty Blender sponge!) for a line-free, flawless finish. Working with a slightly dampened sponge will also help you use less product and blend more evenly.

To hide any imperfections that you weren’t able to conceal with foundation, grab a creamy concealer like MAC’s Studio Fix palette. Apply a little and build when necessary. For the under eye, try using the salmon colored concealer and only targeting the darkest area – typically right near in inner corner of the eye. This will break up the darkness and make the eyes look more awake, refreshed, and avoid too much product from being used on the face. Be sure to set the product with a light dusting of powder or setting spray!

As for the eyes, you have a few options. You can apply a matte champagne shadow, dark brown kohl liner, and finish with a swipe of mascara – or you can just go with mascara. If your client has darkened lids from lack of sleep or genetics, you’ll likely want to use a matte shadow to add some brightness without looking overdone. The dark brown liner will draw further emphasis to the eyelashes and the mascara will provide a finished effect.

Opt for a soft, peachy blush like NARS Sex Appeal or grab a bronzer like the Shimmer Brick from Bobbi Brown. For lips, we love a neutral gloss or balm. If your clients lips are a little chapped, like the model above, recommend a sugar lip scrub like the ones available at LUSH. They’ll help slough away dry, dead skin while infusing the lip with peppermint oil and moisturizing at the same time.

Et voila, you now have the “no makeup” makeup look. This is a great look for everyday, weekend, or when you’re headed to the beach and want to feel confident but not look overdone. There are plenty of waterproof mascara and cream blush options out there that will help keep you looking gorgeous and natural all day long, too!

What do you think of the natural looking makeup shared above? Let me know in a comment and feel free to share your product recommendations for achieving the look!


With the weather finally changing and summer fast approaching, it’s always good to take a look at our makeup routine and adapt it to the warm weather. Today I’m going to share with you my summer makeup routine as well as some must have products!

Going into summer with a tan feels great. Invest in an amazing self tanner and you will have everyone fooled. A self tanner is always a safer way to achieving a beautiful sun kissed glow. Plus, once the shorts and skirts come out of the closet it’s nice to feel extra confident by adding a bronzed glow to your legs!

I recently tried a new self tanner called Vita Liberata sold at Sephora.

I am absolutely loving the color this self tanner provides. The mousse pumps out and has a reddish undertone which really helps you avoid looking orange and appears so naturally sun-kissed. I find a mousse self tanner to be extremely foolproof when used with a tanning mitt like this…

You can see where you are applying the product with each swipe, allowing you to create a streak-free glowing tan from head to toe!

Once you have created a nice base tan with a self tanner of your choice, it is important to keep skin hydrated. For summer, I am absolutely loving dry oil for my skin. It’s fast absorbing and still super hydrating, leaving a beautiful glow on the skin. I’m currently loving this head to toe body oil from The Body Shop called Beautifying Oil. It’s safe for the body, face and hair!

Now that we’ve achieved glowing, hydrated skin from head to toe, let’s move on to a beautiful summery fresh daily makeup routine. This is great for the office or for a girl on the go!

Step 1:

After cleansing and moisturizing your skin, apply a tinted moisturizer all over, blending in with your fingers or a brush. Right now I’m loving the Stila Illuminating Tinted moisturizer. It takes down any redness and naturally blends out minor imperfections while adding a dewy glow to the skin.

Step 2:

If you tend to be oily, gently dust a translucent powder all over to set the tinted moisturizer. If not, let the tinted moisturizer dry for just a few moments before moving onto the next step…bronzer! Apply a bronzer along the top of your forehead, almost brushing the bronzer into your hairline. Then apply into the hollows of the cheeks, under the jaw line and anywhere else you wish to look bronzed! Personally, I love a matte bronzer. I find you don’t have to worry about looking like a disco ball if you like to apply your bronzer with a heavy hand. My personal fave is Chocolate Soleil by Too Faced.

Step 3:

Blush! I absolutely love a rosy glow for summer. Blush complements bronzer and a beautiful tan so well. I like to get playful with my blush for summer, using brighter shades that pop. Apply a blush of your choice to the apples of the cheek or just above where you applied the bronzer (more to the side of your face). Both application techniques are great, it’s just a matter of choosing one you feel works best for you. For a bright pop of pretty pink try the NARS blush in Gaiety.

Step 4:

On to the eyes! A summer look to me is about low maintenance and easy wear. As always, give your brow some definition by brushing a brow powder (in the appropriate color) through your brow. This look can be all about the brows. After creating your summer glow and supple dewy skin, apply a strong brow and you’re out the door! It’s a very chic summer look. If a strong brow isn’t for you, a waterproof cream shadow can be your best friend. Using your fingertip, blend a cream shadow across your lid, softening it into the crease. Choose a color you love or one that complements your eye and skin color! I love the Stila Smudge Pots; a great universal colour is “Kitten.” It’s a pinky nude and can also double as a highlighter! Add some mascara and eyeliner (if you choose) and ta-da! A fresh summery eye look.

There you have it, a fresh summery look that will wear great on a hot summer day!

brittany hallWritten by Brittany Hall
Makeup by Brittany
Visit Brittany on Twitter and Facebook

Brittany Hall has established herself as a freelance makeup artist, with over five years experience in the industry. She’s also an established blogger – on “Makeup by Brittany”, she blogs about fashion, beauty, home decor, and makeup. She brings her flair to the QC blog with regular posts about her experience in the beauty biz.


June 15, 2013 9:00 am

Best Sunscreens For Faces

Best Sunscreen for Faces

We’re all supposed to wear sunscreen each and everyday, but most people forget to do it. It can be especially hard to remember to apply it to your face, particularly when you’re not sure which product is right for you. No one wants to breakout or end up with a chalky-looking face! In this post, I’ll be sharing my opinion on some of the best sunscreens for faces.

First up, we have my personal favorite – the Ultra Fluid SPF60 for Face/Visage from Ombrelle. It’s incredibly lightweight, but you need to remember to shake well before using. A little goes a long way, and the tiny package is perfect for popping into your bag or keeping at your office desk for when you need to apply. If you wear makeup, apply this underneath your makeup. If you plan on hitting the beach or spending a lot of time in the sun, you’ll need to take off your makeup to re-apply OR you’re probably better off with an SPF mist instead.

Secondly, we have a sunscreen I have not personally tried but have heard rave reviews about – the Clinique Broad Spectrum SPF50 Face Cream. Clinique is specially formulated for sensitive skin and does not clog your pores, making this sunscreen a perfect choice for acne-prone skin. Yet again, a little will go a long way so start with a small dab and use a bit more if you need it. Rub it all the way into your skin 20 minutes prior to sun exposure for full protection, and don’t forget to re-apply!

Hampton Sun’s SPF15 Continuous Mist Sunscreen is oil-free and perfect for the no-fuss sun bather. The mist makes it easy to apply under and over makeup, and to touch up all day long. Hampton Sun also offers a continuous spray mist with a bit of bronzer, but the SPF is only 8 – too little for my liking! I’d never recommend applying anything less than an SPF15. Your skin in 20 years will thank you for it, trust me.

Lastly, we have a natural alternative for our eco-makeup lovers. bareMinerals offers a powdered UVA/UVB protective natural sunscreen with SPF30. It comes with a built-in brush so you can apply it evenly all over your face. We don’t think this would be an ideal option for someone heading to the beach for the sake of swimming, but if you’re just on-the-go or heading to the park, this may be an easy and green option for you.

What’s your favorite face sunscreen? Let me know in a comment!


June 11, 2013 3:28 pm

Graduate Feature: MUA Michael Smith

Michael Smith has always been interested in makeup. Before enrolling in QC’s Master Makeup Artistry course his focus had mostly been on special effects makeup for motion pictures. Because of this background he understood the transformative power of makeup, and he was ready to work with the face as a canvas for beauty and glamor.

Michael excelled in his coursework and graduated near the end of 2012. He’s already well on his way to a thriving career as a makeup artist. We’re so pleased to bring you Michael’s story today, and invite you to visit his Facebook page and scroll through some photos of his work below.

Meet QC graduate Michael SmithBusiness Name: Blushstrokes Makeup
Course Taken: Master Makeup Artistry
Service Location: Central Ohio

A few of Michael’s noteworthy credits:

Makeup Artist, “Fish’n with Joe” Youtube episode, “Fishigan in Michigan” (makeup for spokesmodel) Columbus, OH.
Makeup Artist, International Talent models’ photoshoot. Columbus, OH.
Makeup Artist,  35mm feature “Oracabessa” (Tigest Films), Columbus, OH.
(Best Makeup Award Nomination) Makeup Artist, international competition film submission, “Perspectives”, Columbus, OH.


Where are you in your career?

I’m rediscovering my passion for makeup after several years of working in photography. I am building on past experiences, along with my schooling at QC, to better myself as a professional MUA.

What’s your favorite part about being a makeup artist?  

What I enjoy most about being an MUA is the variety of work I do. I can do a wedding one day, and then the next day work on a local film production or photo shoot.

What’s your dream job?

I would have to say my dream would be to work on a Hollywood motion picture production.

If you could do anyone’s makeup, who would you love to work with?

There are so many talented and gorgeous models and actresses out there. However, I’ve always been drawn to the glamour of the thirties and forties. I will say that to me, beauty is not just a pretty face. Beauty is also defined by what’s on the inside.

Why did you choose to study with QC Makeup Academy? 

In Ohio there are no schools for just makeup application, so I found the distance-learning lessons to be convenient. The materials (books, DVDs) that come with the lessons are good references to have even after graduation.

Some photos of Michael’s work…

MUA Michael Smith's take on Clara Bow

Photography by Jeffrey Glasser

QC makeup graduate Michael Smith

Photography by Jeffrey Glasser

Master makeup artistry graduate Michael Smith

Michael Smith's makeup artistry

QC graduate Michael Smith, MUA


June 10, 2013 10:44 am

Makeup Jobs: So Many Possibilities

A lot of aspiring makeup artists are nervous to really throw themselves into the industry, because they don’t know what kind of makeup jobs are available to them. The truth is that with the right training – like the kind offered by QC Makeup Academy – there are a number of jobs that new artists are qualified for. Here are just a few to consider:

Freelance makeup artist

This is probably the popular career choice for many new makeup artists. It’s a great way to build up your experience and your contacts, which is always helpful when you’re trying to move up in the industry. There’s very little start-up cost – all you need is a professional makeup kit and a bit of advertising, and you’re good to go! Also, many people enjoy the freedom of working for themselves, on their own terms. One thing to consider, however, is that it’s not always the most stable work, and there can be long periods of time when you’re not earning an income.

What kind of makeup jobs can you get?

Working for a cosmetic company

Many makeup artists get their start working at a cosmetics counter. It’s a great way to build product knowledge, get comfortable working with people, and polish your skills. It also brings the job security that you won’t get from freelance work. One drawback to working for a cosmetic company is that above all, it is a sales job and you will probably be expected to meet sales goals.

Working as a makeup product representative

As a product representative, you will promote and sell your company’s products to consumers. You’ll have to be extremely knowledgeable about cosmetics, as well as a great speaker and salesperson. This position could require travel to different stores or trade shows, and many people enjoy the fact that every day is different. The downside is that you’re not using the creativity that you would if you were applying makeup each and every day.

What are your makeup career goals? Let us know in a comment!




Nathan's tips to keep your skin looking great this summer

With the freezing weather finally behind us, more than just sweaters and snow blowers can be tucked away. As you pull on your thinner summer clothes, be sure to lighten up on your makeup and skincare as well.

In the warmer months, thick cleansers and creams can feel just as heavy as a winter coat would. For better feeling skin, try switching to something light and gentle like Cetaphil. This little powerhouse will cleanse, soften, and gently remove all the excess debris from your skin without stripping all the natural emollients. There is a fine balance between removing the excess and removing too much. You want the skin to retain a healthy amount of oil so you will look young and beautiful without looking oily. It will help keep the skin hydrated, and even and free of pesky breakouts.

In the summer months the skin is naturally oilier. Not only do we produce more oil, but the humidity in the air can seal it into the skin. Your choice of a summer moisturizer is even more important than the cleanser. Unless you are have very dry skin, dense, oil-based moisturizers in the warmer months will lead to clogged pores and excessive oiliness. Active Moist by Dermalogica is one of my all time favorites. The formulation is sheer but very effective. With a combination of silk amino acids and botanical extracts, this super hydrator will keep the skin supple while smoothing the skin’s surface.

When you open your medicine cabinet and put away the thicker moisturizer, store away the heavy foundation as well. Choosing tinted moisturizer in the summer keeps the skin fresh, dewy, and light while evening out the tone and cutting the red. I adore SkinTint FX by Cover FX. The base is a super-lightweight silicone and it is packed with the perfect amount of color and bronzer to make the skin glow with summer illumination. As if that wasn’t good enough, this mulit-tasker tossed in SPF as well as vitamins F, A, C and E to soothe, calm and hydrate the skin.

There is a big difference between dewy glow and slick shine. To keep excess oil at bay, tap De-Slick Mattifying Powder by Urban Decay onto all of your hot spots. This lightweight, oil-absorbing rice powder works equally well over foundation or bare skin. It’s a lifesaver.

A few simple changes in your daily routine will ensure that your face stays cool regardless of the temperature. Don’t worry about storing away your heavier products over the summer, they’ll hold up just fine until the fall.

Put the heavier products away, but don’t worry, they will hold up just fine until the fall.


nathan johnsonWritten by Nathan Johnson

Nathan Johnson is a film, television, celebrity, and real women’s makeup artist with 18 years experience in the industry. Nathan believes in education and empowerment – his personal mission is to make America more beautiful one woman at a time. He brings product reviews, makeup tips, and personal experience to the QC blog.