Paige Smitherman and I first met in the 90's at Industria Studio's, on an Allure Beauty Shoot with Walter Chin. Her make- up chair immediately felt like home, the dug out or a good Indie pit stop. The best make-up artists know the importance of giving their subject a sense of well being, and a moral boost in the midst of what can be a hectic, opinionated environment. An environment in which it is on the Model (me) to make all the teams hard work come together and to make the moving parts look effortless.
Paige's touch and finesse set her apart from the other artists I had known, as she calmed me with essentials oils, and gave me a face massage using serums and toners.
All before touching my face with a make up brush, she had given me a make over. Paige taught me over the years how much skincare and skin prep is an essential part of the make-up application process.
Beyond her extensive knowledge on skincare, Paige stresses the importance of internal care, both in diet and spirit.
It is no surprise that Paige has built a wildly successful career as a Make Up artist.
Having worked together many times since then, I know that whether Paige is executing a no makeup look or a fully made up face it will be clean, sexy and fresh. 
I am so excited to invite everyone to pick her brain as she will be in our Amagansett store location with us Thursday, JUNE 13th from 6-8 as she is focusing on De-Mystifying make-up, taking questions and showing tutorials.
For those that can't be there I wanted to do a quick interview with her so she could give you some quick tips that you could apply at home.
LEILANI: Being a make up artist you are exposed to many different skin types, based on that universal knowledge, what are your 5 tips for a basic skin care prep for pre make -up application?
PAIGE: The first step in a beautiful makeup application always begins with healthy looking skin that is well hydrated The obvious first step would be a gentle cleanser to remove any left over makeup or debris that might be left on the skin. 
The second step which I consider to be key is exfoliation to remove any dry dead skin and reveal fresh smooth skin underneath. This allows for any products that will be applied next to be fully absorbed and not sit on the surface of the skin. There are various  methods of exfoliation. Ranging  from ones that are more gentle and can be used daily to ones that are more aggressive and should only be used once or twice a week.
The third step would be applying Hyaluronic Acid which is a watery substance that draws moisture to the skin making it considerably more hydrated. It is also very healing and helps to build collagen. This goes into the skin very quickly so there is no wait time before applying your next product which leads me to the fourth which would be  a serum with active ingredients for prevention and correction of any skin issues one might have. 
Last but not least would be moisturizer.  I would normally choose a product based on the time of the year. In the winter depending on the climate one usually would need a little heavier moisturizer than in the summer. 
What 3/4 items would you suggest every woman have in her kit?
My essentials for every makeup bag would be concealer to touch up any spots or to even out discolorations. An eyebrow pencil to fill in brows if needed. Eyebrows add shape and definition to the face and are often overlooked. I would have a cream color that could be used both as a lip and cheek  to brighten up the face if needed and lastly mascara to open and define the eyes!
Do you prefer to apply make-up with your fingers, or using a brush and why?
I tend to do both. I end up using my fingers quite a lot out of convenience and I also find that doing final blending with my fingers seems to work the best. I like to feel the skin and to be able to work the product into the skin.  Brushes, sponges and all of the amazing tools definitely have there place and are very useful but I also think it doesn’t have to be that complicated that you need a specific brush for every detail on the face. 
Are you more of a lip person or an eye person and give us one good tip on that feature, please :)
Ooh! That’s a tough one but I’m going to say eyes. I think the eyes say so much about a person  and it’s also where most people are looking when speaking to each other. Who doesn’t love amazing eyes! Plus I think anyone can enhance there eyes to look more beautiful but not everyone has the lips to do so. My tip for enhancing the eyes would be to use a deep brown  or black eyeliner on the upper inside lid of the eye working it into the lash line. This makes the lashes appear thicker and gives definition to the eye shape. I also like to curl the lashes to open up the eye and apply mascara. 
Highlighting is a great tool, but one that can go wrong easily, tell us the way you like to use it and how to avoid streaks are highlight spots. Or do you forgo it completely?
Yes, Highlighting can go wrong very quickly! I love using highlighter to give a glow to the face but it needs to be used sparingly and only in specific places on the face. The worst thing you can do is apply highlighter to the whole face trying to achieve a dewy look. Highlighting should be done as a last step in applying makeup whether using a cream (my favorite) or a powder. I like to take a cream highlighter and gently dab it onto the top of the cheekbones, inner corners of the eyes, bridge of the nose and at the cupids bow above the lips. With a cream or liquid you can use a patting motion therefore avoiding streaks, never rubbing it on. If using a powder it is best to have applied loose powder to the skin prior to the application of highlighter to ensure it goes on smoothly otherwise the powder can grab onto the moisture in the skin and become caked looking. 
If you are able could you share a couple Industry secrets? Like Pre-wiping your mascara brush..? Powder under the eyes during eye make up application? etc...
Oh gosh, I’ve been doing this for so long I’m not sure what is a secret anymore! 
I think a tip that is so important and I believe is now really catching on with the use of Jade rollers and Guyasha is a face massage while applying moisturizer. This helps to move any stagnant fluids in the face therefore reducing puffiness as well as bringing blood to the surface for a natural glow and it just feels awesome and  rejuvenating!
Wiping the mascara brush or using a new brush for mascara is very helpful so that you don’t apply too much product to the lashes creating clumping and smudges on the eyes. 
Less powder is always more. Loose powder for setting makeup is fantastic but it should be used sparingly or often on shoots it’s not used at all or only in specific spots on the face. I only lightly use powder around the mouth and corners of the nose, between the eyes and middle of forehead, and along the jawline. This allows for the dewiness of the skin to remain creating a more fresh and youthful look. 
Another industry secret is that makeup artist often do not use a product straight from the container but we create our own colors and textures by mixing different products together. This gives us more range when working with different skin tones and skin textures. It can also easily be done at home. Don’t be afraid to play! The beautiful thing is if you mess up or don’t like the way something looks you just wipe it off and start again. Have fun with it!
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