In the Hot Seat: M•A•C Cosmetics Senior Artist Keri Blair


Full disclosure here: M•A•C is without question one of my Top 3 favorite makeup lines. It tops the list, actually, thanks to the cutting edge vibe that the company puts forth, the constant influx of new products and shades, the range of shades of eye shadows (can’t live without Carbon or Jest) and the shine of their glosses (Lustreglass in Spring Bean and Dazzleglass in Baby Sparks are never far from my handbag, desktop or pocket.)

The company’s commitment to individuals living with AIDS + HIV is remarkable, thanks to the M•A•C AIDS Fund. It’s truly a company for all ages, sexes and races. So when the chance to grab tips and tricks from M•A•C Cosmetics Senior Artist Keri Blair presented itself, we were so down.

Blair spoke about which product offers instant grat in our busy, “now, now, now culture” and shared some tips about what feature to do first during your morning makeup routine, along with deets on how she uses M•A•C Nail Lacquers to create nail art. She also shared a brilliant tip about how to ease into wearing dark polish when you live in fear of a grubby-looking chipped mani, as I do.

We’ve never had more fun picking a makeup artist’s brain as we did with Keri Blair!

Readers can follow Blair on twitter for additional tips @MAC_Keri_B and M•A•C @MACCosmetics.

BN: One product you can’t live without from M•A•C?
KB: This always stumps me. I am a beauty junkie so choosing one product is very tough. If pressed, though, I would have to choose M•A•C Matchmaster Foundation. First of all shade 1.0 matches my skin perfectly (which is a major coup) and there is no mixing required due to the fact that M•A•C took the best of our NCs & NWs to create this shade line up. Also, because of the unique pigment technology in this foundation, it gives me great coverage yet still keeps my skin looking like skin. A little skin perfection is every girl’s best friend.

BN: One product every woman needs in her personal makeup kit by M•A•C?
KB: These days we all demand instant gratification. We all want to look our best with minimal additions to our skin care regime. M•A•C Prep + Prime Beauty Balm BB SPF 35 is pretty much the answer to any beauty girl’s makeup dreams. It enhances skin texture, even outs skin tones, acts like a makeup primer, moisturizes and offers a SPF 35.

BN: One tip you would like to share with our readers:
KB: One of my favorite tips is to do your eyes first. This way you have a chance to clean up any shadow fallout; even if you can’t see it, it’s probably there).I use a little M•A•C Fast Response Eye Cream on a clean brush or sponge and use it as an eraser to pick up any shadow fallout. This way you are cleaning and conditioning in one step! Then you can proceed with your foundation and concealer as needed.

BN: Can you describe some of the ways you use M•A•C Nail Lacquer to create nail art?
KB: Nail art is my guilty pleasure. I love to tear off a piece of makeup sponge and pinch it between my tweezers then dip into a small amount of polish and dab on my nails to create a water color effect. You can also use that technique to create a gradient effect that you would usually only be able to achieve with a gel manicure. Also try a dotting tool or toothpick to create dots, shapes and lines on the nail. There are some great tutorials out there. If you have a few great colors, the options are endless.

BN: Do you have any predictions for nail trends in 2012 and beyond?
KB: I can say that after a fun-filled NYFW, the lips and tips trend will be front and center starting this summer and into the fall. Shows like Zac Posen and Nicholas K embraced this trend wholeheartedly. For Nicholas K, I worked with the designer and key makeup artists to create a chocolate brown nail lacquer that perfectly complimented the deep chocolate brown lip in the show. Zac Posen went for a more classic choice in color a red nail lacquer to match up to the gorgeous red lip the girls wore in the show.

BN: Here’s my dilemma: I love dark nail polish, yet don’t wear it, because the chips show KB: after a day. I can hide it for five to six days with a light, neutral shade. Can you suggest something to break me out of my shell and stop my irrational fear of going dark?
KB: I can chip, smudge or scratch my polish before ever leaving the salon. Some good tricks that I have learned are the following: Nails have a chipping point – you have to find yours. If you type a lot, keeping your nails short, so they don’t click the keys of your smart device, will help tremendously in keeping your polish intact; for some of us longer is better. Also make sure you get a dry manicure. It feels good to soak, but your nails absorb water and can lead to faster chipping of your favorite lacquer. Always use a top coat, try M•A•C Overlacquer. Wear gloves when doing dishes or cleaning because water and cleaning products can wreak havoc on your nails and manicure. If you have tried all of the above and are still having issues try just using dark polish on an accent nail like your pinky or ring finger. Those two digits get a little less action and tend to hold polish better.

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