On how I was once told that I look like Severus Snape. And how someone fixed that.

I’ve never done a “before and after” makeover.  Ever.  I just haven’t had the opportunity, and I mean, I usually like to think that the “before” isn’t that bad.  However, this past week I made contact with an old childhood friend who needed a model for some before-and-after makeover shots.  Lauren had been working at the Laura Mercier counter at the Nordstrom in South Coast Plaza, and she’d been given an opportunity to pursue a counter manager position for Trish McEvoy at a different Nordstrom location.  One requirement for the position- produce some before-and-after shots of a model for direct approval by Trish McEvoy herself.  So Lauren threw up a little Facebook “Help me!” one night in search of a model, and I figured hey, I’ve never done it before, I had the time, and I’d love to catch up with a childhood friend, so why not?

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Welp, I know my initial thoughts regarding this whole thing were “Why not?”, but upon seeing the results of Lauren’s work, I think we’ve got a pretty good idea of, “Oh … that’s why”.

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Now, I do not mean to go on any kind of self-deprecating rant here.  I’ve always found an abundance of self-deprecation to be disingenuous for the most part, smacking of a sad search for affirmation.  When well-placed and given in moderation, self-deprecation can actually be my favorite kind of humor (read: Liz Lemon), but I try not to make it my go-to.  So know this: I’m being honest.

But let me tell you that upon showing these shots to my dad, he said that I looked like Severus Snape in the one to the left.  Yes, Dad was paying me the highly-coveted compliment of saying that I look like this man.  How fortunate am I among women!  But you know, I’d be lying if I didn’t say that, well, I couldn’t detect just a little bit of resemblance.  I mean, one of my regular coffee shop customers has told me within this past month that A) I look like Orlando Bloom and B) I look like a page boy.  And no, we’re not talking Orlando Bloom in full Nordic-blonde extensions Legolas-tic glory here.  While most women these days would love to be told that they look like Miranda Kerr, I was bestowed the honor of being told that I look like the dude that married and made a baby with Miranda Kerr.  But I mean, in regards to my “before” picture, I admit that I myself exclaimed that I looked like a gender-ambiguous prison inmate upon seeing it.  And it probably doesn’t help that the expression on my face seems to be bordering on Charlie Sheen mugshot territory.  But hey, it happens.  We’ve all got our Severus Snape/Charlie Sheen/Orlando Bloom days, and it’s for reasons like this that we can all appreciate miracle-workers like Lauren.

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I absolutely loved Lauren’s work.  She stuck to a palette of matte, brownish neutrals for my eyes, really played up my brows (which I loved), and we ended up doing more of a warm, coral lip.  I also loved her application of my face makeup because while she used a good number of products, she applied them in thin, sheer layers and blended them seamlessly to the point where I didn’t look like I was truly wearing makeup- it rather looked like I had perfect skin with subtle contouring.  Lauren was also honest in naming products that she was more excited about than others, and in steering me away from a couple that she wasn’t the biggest fan of.  And trust me- you are hard pressed to find a salesperson in the beauty industry that will be honest in their opinion of products that they have every opportunity to make commission on.  It’s almost always about the up-sale, but with Lauren I walked away with a gorgeous makeup job and a true education.  If you ever find yourself in need of a most excellent makeup artist while perusing the ever-intimidating grounds of the Nordstrom beauty department, know that Lauren is your girl.  I’ll be going back for that Laura Mercier Mineral Illuminating Powder in Starlight, Lauren!  You rock!  Lauren’s been working on a blog of her own recently that you can follow her at: http://www.loveyourlipgloss.com

And I have to add, simply because of all the grand compliments I’ve been receiving lately, that Lauren sent in the pictures for review (with a predictably positive outcome, thanks to Lauren’s talent) and Trish McEvoy herself called me beautiful … *squeal*.  Take that, Snape.  xo, MR

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