Friday, October 17, 2008

Rendezvous with Unaid Ansari, Makeup Expert

Beauty traveling is all about meeting amazing people, seeing the newest products and talking about the inflating beauty market in India. Sometime in the run I come across some people who fascinate me and learning something new from them is always welcoming.

It’s been a great pleasure to talk to one of the makeup magicians, Mr. Mohammed Unaid Ansari. Unaid is the one who conjures gorgeous faces at Givenchy in India and is an excellent person to talk to.
I was lucky enough to have a small chat with him through his really hectic schedule and grab a bite at some of the latest things in the beauty trends.

Beauty Traveller: - Hi Unaid, Would you tell us something about yourself?
Unaid Ansari: - I’m Mohammed Unaid Ansari Makeup-Artist and makeup trainer for Givenchy India operation. My work usually is of training, conducting workshops for my clients, recommendations on various makeups according to different skin types and concerns and also educating my clients about the proper method of wearing makeup.

BT: - So what inspired you to be a makeup artist?
UA: -I’ve been into Art since my childhood. I was very good in sketches and makeup just came along by itself. I graduated from college and was into the family business and just thought of doing a job and joined Clarins as a Beauty Advisor. Color cosmetics fascinated me and I always liked to try something new all the time. And with the constant support and inspiration of my friends and colleagues, I am where you see me today.

BT: - Did you go to a makeup school?
UA: - I didn’t take any formal training in makeup artistry and just followed the basic rules and my creativity. I had to work hard though and remember spending hours and hours on browsing the internet for collecting makeup tips and tricks from international artists and learning on how they worked. That is how I learned how to hold (makeup) brushes and the proper strokes of makeup application.

BT: - How long have you been in the industry?
UA: - I’ve been in this industry since 5yrs and have worked in various sectors of beauty though makeup artistry has always been a passion and I’m happy that now its my profession.

BT: - What is your take on the Fall/Winter trends this year?
UA: - As far as what I’ve seen this Fall/Winter, the makeup its very intense with a lot of emphasis on the eye with solid bold colours and nude colors for the lips and a good coverage for the face if necessary. It’s very important to hydrate the skin by following daily skin care regime. This is the time to experiment with darker colors.

BT: -How do you set trends in makeup?
UA: -Makeup trends according to me are set by your creativity. Its like, how creative you can get with whatever resources are available with you. You need to keep on trying something innovative which could be a new application technique or wearing a certain kind of makeup which would suit your personality. It is very obvious that people have different face and body structure and carrying a particular shade on them depends on there profile and the ease of carrying even the heaviest looks. Trends are set in things that one is comfortable in and even a Kohl pencil can set a trend if worn in a stylish way and if one could carry it.

BT: - So true. But Indian women commit faux pas? Don’t they?
UA: -The biggest mistake what I still see in women here is that they choose a wrong shade of foundation. They end up being a prey to wrong shades thanks to the myth that fair foundation makes you look fairer. They need to understand that our skin tone is yellow and they must buy one that matches it and not something with a pink tone. That really is the biggest flaw in makeup and that’s how they end up looking cakey. Secondly a dark lip liner and a light lipstick look so garish and it’s like committing a sin but unfortunately almost everyone does that. My tip is to outline the lips with a lip liner and blend the same shade of lip liner all over the lips. Then put the lipstick on top as that gives a nice base for the lipstick to sit on and stay put for a longer time.
Another common mistake is the way of putting an (eye) liner. Never start from the inner corner of the eye instead always start from the outer corner taking it inwards. This gives a lifting look to the liner than a drooping one in the corners.

BT: - Could you tell us “the” 5 must-haves in a woman’s purse?
UA: - Moisturizer, Compact, kohl pencil (Black), Mascara, Lip gloss.

BT: - I think one of the most complex things is to carry out an office look as it goes over the board almost all the time. What would you suggest?
UA: - Just try to be as natural as possible. Try to wear shades which are not too shimmery or gaudy. Opt for shades that are towards the softer note. You can wear peaches, pinks, corals and mauves. These colours will give a softer but an elegant look. Don’t try to over do the retouching of T-zone and kohl as it could go over the top and make you look geeky.

BT: - Any tips for evening makeup? (My readers would be dying to know that.)
UA: -For evenings, I would suggest to go a little heavier on the eyes with colours such as green, violets, blacks and browns with a lot of emphasis on kohl and mascara as that would make the eyes pop and stand out. Go for nude lips as the emphasis is on the eye and your blush should be match with the lip shade. Just to add a little zing to the look, apply a blush with shimmery particles on the cheeks to get that glam look but in tiny amounts. You can also go bronzed and dusky for the evening parties by adding a bronzer to the foundation and then accentuating the cheek bones, jaw line, sides of the forehead, neck and also the cleavage if it’s a plunging neckline. Add on a little shimmer to spice up the look.

BT: - What brands are you currently using?
UA: - M.A.C, Bobbi brown, Red earth, Kryolan, Dior, Givenchy, Estee lauder, Helena Rubinstein, V.O.V, Clarins and Shiseido.

BT: - Could you give us a personalized recommendation on certain makeup products: -
UA: -
Foundation- Givenchy Skin tonic foundation, Clarins true radiance, Shiseido The Stick, Estee lauder double wear stay in place.

Concealers- Givenchy mister light, Clarins instant light perfecting touch.

Blush - Estee lauder cream stick, Givenchy prism blush, M.A.C cream and powder, Shiseido.

Eye makeup- from Dior, M.A.C, Chanel, YSL, Lancôme.

Mascara- Chanel, Givenchy, Lancôme, M.A.C, Clarins, Dior.

Lipsticks- Givenchy, Dior, Shiseido, Chanel, Estee lauder and Clarins.

Lip glosses- Lancôme, Dior, Clarins, and Chanel.

BT: - Thanks a million Unaid for giving us some of your precious time. Thanks for being such a inspiration. Best of luck for your future ventures.

Dear Readers,
If you have any queries to ask Unaid please feel free to mail it to him on


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