Why I stopped taking before & after photos to promote my makeup services.

I don't sell transformations. 

Recently while on the job I was called "a magician" by a mom speaking to her 5-year-old daughter. "She makes women look beautiful". I was absolutely floored. Is this what we are teaching our younger generation? That I, a makeup artist, am the one responsible for making a woman beautiful? 

I don't transform and I certainly don't sell transformations. 

To be honest, I have ALWAYS felt uncomfortable asking my clients for a "before" and "after" photo for the use of attracting more clients. I understand why many makeup artists take and use before and after photos. It is a way to show other clients what they can do with makeup. However, in an age where we can post hundreds of photos on the internet for everyone to see, edit and manipulate any photo at our fingertips, I just don't buy into it anymore. 

Have you ever noticed that women are typically not smiling in their before photo? (I've actually witnessed makeup artists telling the client or model not to smile in their before photo) It's like they are ashamed of the way they look without makeup or shouldn't look "as good" in their before photo. Next in line to go under the brush to see what comes out on the other side. Then "voila"...a smile suddenly appears when the big reveal happens and they feel human again. I want to see women standing proudly in their natural beauty without makeup and I do not believe that taking a before and after photo of a woman and selling it to the public saying "look what I've done" will ever promote that. 

As a woman serving women, it is my job to help a woman feel more beautiful...not magically transform her using colored products. And I know this may sound contradictory considering I am a makeup artist and I do use colored products to enhance my clients' features. I am much more concerned about the process from when my client sits in my chair to when she looks in the mirror. The time we get to spend chatting about their life, their accomplishments, their children or travels. What makes them feel happy or brings them joy and maybe even the person they are so in love with that they get to marry that day. THAT is the story I get to take home every single day instead of 2 snapshots to share with no context for the viewer. The process when women can sit down, relax, open up and let go is when the real magic happens.

I know not every makeup artist will feel the same as I do, so let me quickly say you are not wrong and I am not right. This is simply something that has come up after almost 10 years in the beauty industry. 

How to give your energy field some love

I have recently been on a new beauty adventure in energetic healing. You are probably wondering how energy and beauty have any correlation at all. I sat down for a chat with my energy healer Ali to dive into this concept a bit deeper and started seeing how the pieces fit together. 

What is energy healing? 

If you are un familiar with energy healing (as I was before I began with Ali) here is a little breakdown for you:

Think about yourself mid week after a few long work days, a couple of fitness classes and maybe an argument with your husband. You are feeling pretty drained, so you grab a coffee on your way to work or down an energy drink to get through your workout. We tend to fill ourselves up with unnatural substances to regain the energy we need to get us through the week. When working with an energy healer it is possible to plug our natural energies back in, like working on a puzzle. 

The final goal of energy work is getting back to wholeness and honouring what is already there for us. Ali, my energy healer is a pro at holding space so I can even find beauty in my wounds. 

Natural Healing - Natural Beauty

It became very apparent to me that when the energetic pieces of ourselves find their way back to their home body we become more light, more aware and more sensitive to our surroundings. It was easy to think back on my journey when I began to live in a more natural way, I became more sensitive to chemicals in my products, sweeteners in my drinks and even negative people in my life. 

Becoming more in tune with your “full” energetic body we tend to rely less on television, coffee, relationships and other escape mechanisms to bring our energy levels up. This can also be said about becoming more in tune with your natural body rhythms, skin cycles and menstrual cycles. We don't need 25+ beauty products, we need to be more aware of the food that is going into our bodies, the thoughts sitting stagnant in our minds and our energetic needs (as women) during our monthly cycles. Becoming more connected to your mind and body, the more our true natural being shines through, and that is beautiful. 

Energy Fields

Our Energetic body is an extension of our physical body. The field is composed of vibrations (emotions, thoughts & colours). Physical pain, or skin issues can manifest physically if energetic vibrations are low. This is because energy becomes stagnant. Taking care of the energetic body is just as important taking care of the physical body. This care can also help shift though patterns. 

So what can you do to care for your energetic field? 

I decided to launch this blog on Valentines Day for those ladies who are into self love and self care. We do not always think about our energetic field the way that we think about our skin so it can get neglected. Here are some things you can do to give your energy field some LOVE! 

1. Meditate! Light up some beautiful candles (my favs are Woodlot or Harlow), turn on the gentle tunes and get cozy. Sometimes I will use a guided meditation as I have a wandering mind. 


2. Clear negative or stagnant energy. My favourite way to do this is with Palo Santo or Sage smudge. This is no new technique in the green beauty world. I use sacred smudge spray from “Ceremonie” and Palo Santo from “Woodlot”. Both Palo Santo and Sage clear your space of energy that is not yours. This is also a great way to bless your space. 


3. Visit my babe Ali Babylon in Kitsilano. Every week I look forward to my session with Ali. She thrives on creating a sacred space with candles, sage, card decks, tea, hot water bottles and most of all, her nurturing caring self. Ali became extremely humbled by her clients' vulnerability, she recognized that it was their struggles or wounds that transformed into qualities of deep strength and beauty, Ali is extremely intuitive, knowledgeable and I trust her with my entire being, which is why I highly recommend treating yourself to an energy healing session. 

I am no expert, so If you would like to learn more about Ali and her sessions please visit her                on instagram @alibabylon or at www.alibabylon.com

Okoko Cosmétiques

Being an active member in the clean beauty world here in Vancouver has opened up so many opportunities for me to meet incredibly driven, like minded women who are doing HUGE things! Oyeta is one of those beautiful ladies. 

My friend Natalia brought Oyeta to my very first natural beauty workshop and I quickly found out about her beautiful skin care line Okoko Cosmetiques. 

Okoko is: Canadian made (hell yes!) Cruelty Free, Vegan Friendly, and extremely luxurious. 

I have tried many skincare lines, and some products are very simple and super effective. Okoko is seriously next level skincare (in my opinion). It is filled with antioxidant rich, anti inflammatory, seriously nourishing ingredients (and a lot of them!) 

Here is what I have tried:

Tomato Lycopene Multi-Purpose SUBLIME balm

- the formula is bright orange and thick, until you rub it in your hands - then it turns into a silky oil. 

- my skin feels extremely soft...I don't think my skin has actually ever felt like this after the age of 10. 

- hella moisturized, bright and even 

Clay Face Mask - La D'TOX NOIRE

- I started using this mask right after the holidays during a post alcohol and sugar binge (breakouts and dry patches all over the place)

- I noticed instant results after the first use, however it was not until 3 uses that I REALLY saw the results. I haven't worn any face makeup since because my skin is super clear and even. 

Gentle Facial Treatment LA BOUE DE BEAUTÉ

- I have only used this mask once so far, but it was extremely gentle and a think texture when mixed with water. 

- to remove both of these masks, I have used water and treated the masks as an exfoliant to gently remove any dead skin at the very end. 


I sent a text to Oyeta today, because I am so damn impressed by her products. I have been a huge "Mahalo Skin Care" junkie for over a year now, and I am happy to say I have found my Canadian alternative. 

The biggest differences I have noticed in my skin are:

- Soft, smooth skin

- Brighter

- More hydrated / Comfortable 


get them straight to your inbox, plus my top 20 ingredients to avoid PDF

Your body will tell you when it is in toxin overload, and it may be aging you.

The truth is, we live in a toxic, chemical abundant world. 90,000 chemicals registered in the U.S.A to be exact. Unfortunately we cannot hide from many of the toxins that are present in our environment, but we can control what we expose ourselves to in our own house hold.

There are many symptoms of toxin overload including:

  • hormonal fluctuations
  • nervous system issues
  • blemishes, wrinkles and dull skin
  • fatigue 
  • cancer, diabetes, liver disease

This makes toxin overload a contributor to many common diseases.


The more exposure to toxins in our environment, the quicker our genetic material is breaking down. When genes are "broken down" and "damaged" they begin to malfunction and age which leads to many of the diseases and symptoms mentioned above. 

By approaching this problem in a holistic way, we must ensure we allow our bodies:

  • proper nutrition
  • enough sleep
  • low stress 
  • less exposure to toxic chemicals. 


As it is not absolutely possible to turn back time and reverse our natural process of aging, it is possible to slow it and age in a more positive way. Here are my 3 beauty tips for aging skin. 

1. As always, drink plenty of water. I will never stop saying this as it is absolutely crucial. You may attach yourself to any "fad" or hot ingredient on the market, but if you are not drinking enough water, your skin will not be healthy from the inside out, which is what is going to benefit you as you age. Avoiding excessive amounts of coffee and sugary drinks is also key. Try adding a lemon, cucumber or fruit in your water instead for flavour. 

2. Avoid toxins in your skin care and makeup products. As you know, 60% of what you apply to your skin is absorbed. Which means you wouldn't remove your makeup with windex and moisturize with mechanical lubricant would you? Well, unfortunately many conventional products on the market contain similar ingredients to those you clean and work with. 

3. Take and apply your vitamins. Ensure you are exposing yourself to about 20 minutes of unprotected sunlight per day. If this is not possible, supplement with Vitamin D. Some other detoxifying supplements include Cod liver oil, probiotics, spirulina & chlorella 

Applying vitamins such as Vitamin C to this skin may help reduce external toxin damage and sun damage.

Remember. Our bodies are capable of self detoxification, but we must reduce and cut out our exposure to toxins in our:

  • food
  • habits (smoking)
  • cosmetics & personal care products
  • household cleaners
  • paints & textiles
  • medications
  • drinking water 
  • cell phone use ( EMF exposure) 

Choose the holistic path and detoxify this January by lowering your exposure to toxins and assist your bodies natural detoxification abilities with healthy foods, stress free activities and sleep!

Happy New Year



get them straight to your inbox, plus my top 20 ingredients to avoid PDF

How to find the right natural cleanser for your skin

I hate to say it, but facial cleansers are extremely neglected by the majority of my clients. 

I find it interesting, as I have women coming to see me to purchase makeup and when I ask them about their skin care regime, most admit that they do not use a cleanser (or use bar soap!). Yikes! Let me go over a few reasons why this is problematic. 

1) Makeup, regardless if it is natural are not should be removed before bed. It is absolutely integral for the health of our skin to remove makeup residue from the day. This especially includes around the eyes as mascara, eyeliner and minerals from eyeshadow can sneak in and damage the eye. 

2) Ok, so you don't wear makeup? Unfortunately this does not mean you are going to bed with nothing on your skin. Throughout your day you are picking up external toxins, fumes, oil, dirt and sweat from the environment. If you are not cleansing your skin before bed, you end up rolling your face around your pillow, providing a dirty gift for your next nights sleep, and allowing these elements dive deeper into your skin. 

3) Using bar soap can be damaging for the skin. Cleansers in fact should not contain soap, stripping sulphates or detergents. When you get that squeaky clean feeling it means the natural oils from your skin are no longer present. This can contribute to over drying, sensitive and dull skin.  Natural soaps are made from plant based oils to help keep skin moist and supple. 

My Suggestions:


For Dry/ Maturing Skin

What:  Ceremonie Milk Cleanser 

Benefits: A cream based cleanser is crucial for dry skin types. It is especially important to avoid anything over drying or stripping in a cleanser when your skin is on the dry side, or beginning to age. This cleanser contains fruit oil, aloe juice, flower water, vitamin E and a cocktail of essential oils to keep the skin smooth, hydrated and balanced 

How: Massage into damp skin. Remove with a warm, wet cloth. 

For Oily Skin

What: Fable Naturals Oil Cleansing Balm

Benefits: Oil Cleansing Balm is beneficial for any skin type to remove oil, dirt and makeup by acting like a magnet. However, specifically  beneficial for oily skin to help balance the skins natural oil production. 

How: mix a dime size amount in hands with water to emulsify. Rub over skin for 1-2 minutes, massaging to improve skins circulation. Remove with a hot, damp cloth. 

For Acne Prone Skin/ Sensitive Skin

What: Viva Bio Foaming Cleanser

Benefits: This cleanser contains probiotics and apple cider vinegar to help gently cleanse and balance acne prone and sensitive skin types. Keeping the skin's moisture and pH perfectly balanced. Combined with Viva's Amaze Exfoliating Gel, the two make a powerful, acne fighting team by sloughing away dead dry skin. 

How: 1/2 a pump is all you need. This cleanser dispenses as a foam and a little bit goes a long way. Massage onto damp skin for 1 minute and rinse away with warm water. 

What about normal skin types?

Lucky you. You have "normal skin". This essentially means you have little to no skin issues. You may struggle with the occasional breakout or dry patch from time to time, but for the most part you skin is clear and moist. Although, don't take this as a free pass, you too still must cleanse. 

I personally have normal skin and I use all 3 of these cleansing options depending on the season and how my skin is acting. 

Customize your routine

These are merely suggestions based on skin types. Some may have preferences about their skin routines. If you like that deep clean feeling I also suggest the Viva Gel Cleanser to get the traditional foaming action. 

Got a cleanser question? Don't be afraid to ask

xoxo Jacqueline 

Are fashion makeup trends actually wearable off the runway?

Its a good question. How do fashion makeup trends actually effect us normal folk who are still trying to grasp the concept of using a foundation primer before a foundation?!?

What I will say is that NO, you do not need to follow makeup trends to feel that you are applying your makeup correctly, or even doing things the "right way". For the fashion industry, seasonal trends are quite important. For everyday wear, seasonal trends are fun and can help you discover and release your creative or wild side. 

Trends: As mentioned earlier, trends are not to be taken as cookie cutters or mold's of how you should look or dress. Try to think of trends as inspiration, or even just a free ticket to express yourself the way that you want. Don't follow because it is trendy, follow because it feels right.

Without over analyzing everything and becoming a party pooper, I must say the artist inside of me gets super excited when new seasonal trends are released, so I have decided to create a cocktail of artistic and practical makeup techniques for the Fall Season. 

Artistic Liner:

 Artistic Liner

Artistic Liner

Just when you thought you mastered the cat eye with a liquid liner. This fun, artistic trend can be very wearable. Here are a few examples:

Wearable looks: 

 use floss to create perfectly straight lines 

use floss to create perfectly straight lines 

 white eyeliner is perfect to make the eyes pop. Add liners or dots. 

white eyeliner is perfect to make the eyes pop. Add liners or dots. 

 adding a subtle wing on the bottom is a fun way to create an original look. 

adding a subtle wing on the bottom is a fun way to create an original look. 

Dark Vampy Lips:

 Dark vampy lips

Dark vampy lips

it is no secret that dark lips and nude eyes have been on trend for a while now. What could be easier than simply throwing on a vampy shade and leaving the house for a night on the town. It is easy to be afraid of such a dark lip, but I highly suggest giving it a try. You have nothing to loose. (Most of my clients have been pleasantly surprised at the way a bold lip makes their eyes pop)

Green Beauty Shade Suggestions: 

1. Elate Cosmetics in Tantric: (purchase now)

2. Rituel de Fille in Fortune Teller, Shadow Self, Night Wanderer and Chrysalis

3. Au Naturale Cosmetics in Spanish Rose

 Twiggy lashes

Twiggy lashes

Although not a fan of clumpy lashes myself, those of you that like to keep your mascara well past your best before date are rejoicing! A heavier mascara look paired with a bottom lash is on trend right now. Think Twiggy! 

Expert tip:

When applying mascara to the bottom lashes, begin at the root near your water line and give you wand a gentle wiggle to the sides, rather than up and down. You want the majority of product to be along the lash line, then you can lightly bring the product down the lash for a more subtle look.  

Fluorescent Colours:

 Fluorescent colours

Fluorescent colours

Just because these product suggestions are natural dosnt mean we cant play with colour. This is one of my favourite trends because I LOVE me some colour...and those neon lights! 

Green Beauty Product suggestions:

1. Elate Cosmetics lipstick in Spirit: (purchase now)

2. Root eyeshadow in Olivia

3. Gabriel Cosmetics nail polish in Lime

4. Well People mascara in Blue

Glossy Features: 

 Glossy features

Glossy features

This trend in particular is very wearable on the lips, however you may not find a time or a place to wear a "glossy lid". So why not embrace the trend and put up with your naturally glossy lids rather than powdering or trying to keep them matte all day long. This trend is typically achieved on the runway by using a lipgloss or petroleum jelly.

Green Beauty tip:

Stay clear of any petroleum based product, as it is a byproduct of crude oil. Environmentally, it is not a renewable resource and it seals off the skin and stops the skin from breathing. Instead consider trying a petroleum free product such as Waxelene or Live Clean Jelly.

You can use a Petroleum free jelly on the lids, cheek bone or lips for an added gloss effect. 

Sparkles & Glitter:

 Sparkles & Glitter! 

Sparkles & Glitter! 

Time for the most exciting, and my personal favourite fall trend...SPARKLES! 

For some, glitter is not even an option because it tends to get everywhere and difficult to remove, but with Showgrrrl Sh*t glitter, that is no longer a problem. 

Showgrrrl Sh*t is a glitter company made by Vancouver Burlesque Dancers. They offer glitter pots, saline based glitter adhesive (safe for eyes) and shea butter based body glitter that is easily washed away in the shower. 

How to wear glitter?

- Use glitter body butter on arms and legs for an extra sparkle

- Apply glitter to the top of the cheek bone, mimicking a highlighter

- Apply glitter near outside of eyes or on the brow bone

- Apply glitter as a liner  

- If you are really feeling bold, you can wear glitter on your lips (this may not last, or be very comfortable) 

All trends provided by Vogue

How can I be so involved in such a vain industry?

Travelling can be such an eye opening experience. Seeing brand new views, diving into cultures  and especially meeting new people. I love to travel and explore, but there is a feeling that never goes away and that feeling is coming home to the most magical place on earth, British Columbia. If travelling has taught me anything, it is to appreciate where I come from. I am lucky to call BC a safe, diverse and accepting home. 

Here in BC we have a massive culture of artisans that create because they love their craft. We also have a large community of consumers that appreciate high quality handmade products. I have recently discovered 2 product lines from BC that I didn't have to travel far to find.  These products have had a profound effect on me, far beyond the beautiful scents, textures and packaging. These are the types of companies that keep me thriving in this beauty industry. 

1. Penny Francis Apothecary

Sarah and I met at a small cafe here in Kitsilano. She brought her son with her, and we only had about 45 minutes to chat. After leaving the cafe I realized that I had a huge takeaway. It was not the endless amount of knowledge and passion about skincare that Sarah had shared with me, or the cute little drawing her son did of my face, it was her love and commitment for her family. Sure, she could spend all day reading, writing and formulating her skincare products, but she puts her children first. She showed me that you can work hard and create something great while still living life for yourself (or your family). 

Sarah may not have her cosmetic line if it were not for her own mother who ingrained into her the importance of proper skincare. When we share moments with our loved ones and teach each other about the honest, important things in life. We may even be ignited with something we did not know was even there. 

explore PFA here

2. Here and Now Botanicals

I stumbled upon Here and Now botanicals at the "Vegan Expo" in Vancouver, we were sharing a booth with Elate Cosmetics and a few other clean beauty lines. What caught my attention was that H&N formulated each scent profile from memories that were shared at music festivals. I thought this was super unique and special. As a fan of music festivals myself, I knew the stories behind each of these products went much deeper than just the ingredients that were mixed up and bottled. 

I was lucky enough to run into Here & Now Botanicals at Bass Coast Music Festival this summer and told my friend about their products. She browsed and decided to choose the "Sweet Sassafras" aromatherapy oil (I accidentally left mine at home). She said that the scent brought her back to her hometown of South Africa. One of my favourite memories was watching my friend connect with other festival goers by rolling the oil into her hand and sharing the scent with them, then having them ask her to roll it onto them. I am so glad I was able to experience this product line the way it was meant to be experienced and shared. 

explore Here and Now Botanicals here

Sometimes I wonder how I am still involved in an industry that is essentially about purchasing products to "look good" or "smell good" , but then I think back to these special moments where I have been taught how to connect, share and make memories through a handcrafted piece of art that makes me feel just as good as I look. 



Mahalo Skin Care

I have made a new commitment for myself and my readers regarding product reviews...

Receiving natural beauty products in the mail to trial and review is nice, I admit that. But to be completely honest and transparent...I tend to try some products once or twice and write about it because I feel obligated. I have made a commitment to only review products that I have tried for at least 2 weeks, consistently. 

Mahalo skin care is a perfect example of a skin care line that I have taken the time to test out and fall in love with. I have been testing this product now for about 6 months, and not only am I a huge fan, but this is also a product I would re purchase as a customer. 

The Mahalo skin care website has a wealth of product knowledge, organic ingredients lists and intention, so I will use this time to describe my personal experience with the product

Overall Favourite Products:


I have been dreaming about this product since I first received it 6 months ago. I still have product left in the bottle, and I use it every single day. It is The Mahalo Vitality Elixir

I use this Elixir in 2 ways: 

1. At night after my water based cream, to soften my skin and lock in moisture

2. Mixed into my foundation 

My results: My skin is so happy with this product. I love me some dewy skin, which is why I mix it in with my foundation. I use this technique on my makeup clients that have especially dry skin and it ensures the makeup does not sit on top of the skin and in the dry patches. 

My skin has always been decent, but I did see quite the shift in texture and quality of my skin. My skin has a beautiful glowing quality every single day because of this product. The texture of this elixir melds right into the skin. This is a very luxurious and high quality product. 


Most Unique Product:

The Petal Mask Mahalo

The Mahalo Petal Mask is one of the most unique products I have used to date. The only way I can describe the texture of this mask, is by describing melted marshmallow. It is gooey, sticky and luxurious. The mask carries a rich rose scent which is very relaxing and calming. 

How is use this product: I have been mixing some of my Pele Mask with my Petal Mask because I adore the texture.

My results: After removing the mask my skin feels hydrated, refreshed and glowing. This is my "special occasion" mask, I find myself using it the night before and important date. 




Best Scent:

MAHALO Skin Care Vacation Glow body oil

The Mahalo Vacation Glow is by far my personal favourite scent of the entire Mahalo collection. This is not a product for one who does not enjoy rich aromatics, as this serum will take your senses for a ride. The three scent profile's are as followed:

Jasminum Sambac (Pikake or Hawaiian Jasmine) – brings a lightness and happy feeling. Helps to dispel fear, guilt, and emotional blocks. “With Jasmine, we are helped to understand that there is no division between physical and divine love.

Geranium – helps to relax the body and relieve tension, anxiety, restlessness, irritability, and/or fear. Prized for its benefits in skincare.

Frankincense – prized for millennia, it isvalued for for prevention of wrinkles and dry, damaged skin, for support of the immune system, and for nervous depression. The oil has pain-relieving and decongestant properties and the aroma is renowned for its ability to instill deep tranquility of the mind.

This is a rich scent to die for. In the hair, I personally will only use it on the very ends and not throughout. I prefer using this as a serum on my arms and chest when I dress up to give beautiful glow to the skin. 


Problematic Skin go-to:


The Mahalo Pele Mask is a classic, and my "go-to" when my skin is problematic, red or inflamed with acne. The two results I have experienced from using this mask is:

1. Soft, baby bum soft, skin. When removing this mask, I use it as an exfoliant, and scrub it off my skin. My face feels super soft and clear after removing this mask.

2. Reduced redness and even looking skin. Mahalo is not lying when they say the Pele mask will combat and fade blemishes. I do see this result every time I this mask.