Raleigh NC's On Location Hair + Makeup Artist specializing in TV/Film, Weddings, and Commercial projects.

Raleigh NC On Site Hair and Makeup - Ashley Watts Beauty

Learn more about Raleigh, NC’s Premier On Location Hair and Makeup services provided in Apex, Cary, Morrisville, Chapel Hill, Sanford, New Hill, and Pittsboro.

Posts in Makeup
My 2019 Bridal Beauty Must-Haves

As the bulk of the 2018 Bridal Season is coming to a halt, I figured now is a great time to take a moment to reflect on my ride or dies in my kit going into 2019. The things I am relying on heavily when it comes to artistry essentials working in the Bridal Industry.

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  1. Outlast All-Day Lip Color with Topcoat:
    The biggest thing when it comes to Bridal Beauty is making sure that your lip color is non-transferable and long wearing. This items hits the nail for that! They’ve got a ton of awesome bridal colors as well, and the price point is unbeatable!

  2. IGK 30,000 Feet:
    Wondering how to get the most impressive volume and texture in your bridal hairstyle? Look no further! This is, hands down, the best discovering I made in 2018. How was I sleeping on this product?!

  3. One of the Kind Hairpins:
    I am absolutely swooning over Blushing Flamingos incredibly hair accessories and am looking forward to seeing more items from them in 2019! Adding a small piece to your hair can completely transform your updo and give it a bit more attention it deserves (Pst, email me about the custom ones I make as well!).

  4. Tartlette in Bloom:
    This palette has been on my favorites for almost 3 years now. The colors are absolutely amazing for bridal looks and natural smokey eyes. So if you’re looking for the perfect romantic palette, you’ve found it here.

  5. Mac Face + Body Foundation:
    I’m all about layering to build vs using a full coverage foundation. I love a natural perfected look and constantly grab for Face and Body to deliver the “icing” on top of the cake. I also don’t use a ton of highlighter on Spring/Summer brides because the NC heat can make you look like a doughnut. This foundation gives you that “bridal glow” without going overboard.

So there you have it guys! My 5 must-have for Bridal Beauty going into 2019. I’m excited to see what I learn and change next year in my kit! What are some of your favorite bridal products?

5 steps to collaborate successfully

Okay, okay. I know what you're thinking. Ashley, styled shoots are the backbone of amer-uh, the entrepreneurial. Don't tell me they're a bad idea. But, hear me out.

I've been in this industry for some time now, ever growing, ever changing, and you guessed it -- ever collaborating. Most of these collaborations have been amazing, but some, well...they've been learning experiences. Thus, I feel like there needs to be a disclaimer out there so people don't make the same mistakes I made about twenty times too many. They say you learn each time you've been "burned" or wronged, whatever you want to call it. But for me? Oh no. My stubborn thick head kept humming the word yes over and over again.

It honestly took me ages to figure out why collaborations weren't going my way. And once I adapted the below, it's saved me a ton of headaches since. Let me spare you the frustration and disappointment of a collaboration gone wrong by sharing my tragedies and triumphs in these 5 easy steps that will leave you less likely to throw in your creative towel and more likely to feeling confident when saying yes to collaborations aka styled shoots.

successful styled shoot contract

 

1. Tell them what you need.
The first time I signed up a styled shoot, I had ASSumed that all the experts around me knew what I needed. Whether you're a photographer, florist, or like myself, a makeup/hair artist. You need to be clear with your collaborators on what you all need to feel like everyone walked away serving their clients/business.
 

2. If it isn't your style, don't say yes.
You'd think this would be a given. It isn't. You'll find yourself looking for anyone who will snap some images or dust on some makeup that's willing so you'll have something, anything, to post. But if it's not going to serve your portfolio or your social media feeds, than don't say yes.

3. Share your ideas.
You're being asked to collaborate because someone liked what you can do and trusts your vibe. They've given you an idea, but don't be afraid to tweak, share your ideas for changes, or talk about what can be realistically accomplished, they're coming to you because you're an expert in your craft. They're trusting you as a pro, so be it and them 'em what you can offer.

4. Share ALL the vendors.
If the person who has coordinated the shoot didn't collect the social handles for the vendors collaborating. Take it upon yourself to do it. I've been so disappointed watching a large project I collaborated on get posted with credits going out to only a few of the larger vendors and forgetting us little guys. I've been guilty of the same. Don't be afraid to kindly reach out and let them know they forgot to tag you. You collaborated with these people because you felt you could cross your clientele!

5. If you're unhappy, say it.
You can be respectful and share your opinions. If a project you collaborated on, and followed the above 4 steps, turns out to be crap. Tell them. Am I saying send them an email saying, "Hey, this is garbage, here's an invoice". Absolutely not, conduct yourself professionally. There's no need for hurtful words or pitchforks. But if you worked hard and when you get the gallery back, you see it was edited all very dark so your work doesn't show through, or your floral arrangement was pictured from so far away no one can tell if those are roses or, uh, lillies, or um...who really knows. Or the makeup/hair artist used blue eye shadow and the vibe you were hoping for was natural so you had to spend 80 forevers editing out frosted blue shadow. Don't trash the idea, but let someone know when they've fallen short of their expectations. Most people would rather hear it from you, than hear it through the grapevine about them knowing it was you who said it.

That's it. It took me years to understand that standing up, saying no, and being firm in what is expected wasn't "rude" (thanks southern hospitality mind set) but actually a form of good professional communication. You should never walk away from a Styled Shoot with any vendors feeling like they've missed out or wasted their time. I've done it before, but you can certainly prevent it.

 If you're ready to go the extra mile, I even have a Styled Shoot contract that I've made available for download in my Etsy shop, use the code "BLOG10" for 10% off. 

Know what you're paying for: Researching before booking

In this day in age, finding a makeup artist is quite a challenge. There are so many different kinds of artists out there with different styles, ideas, and backgrounds. So how do you know which one is the right one for you?

Ashley Watts - Winston-Salem, NC based Makeup Artist

Ashley Watts - Winston-Salem, NC based Makeup Artist

1. Knowing what makes an artist a professional. The term "professional" or "qualified" gets thrown around a lot in the industry. To some, picking up a brush belt is simply enough to use the title, like being professional is guaranteed. But it isn't always the case. Always ask for a list of credentials and references. I always recommend doing a quick Google search on your potential artist, I usually look at the first two pages and look for links from previous clients the artist might not post.
2. What training does the artist have? Always ask for an artist's educational background. Knowing whether they've completed training programs and hold certifications is a plus. There are many ways to get trained/certified/licensed. This is important if you're looking for someone who is certified for lash applications or airbrushing. Ask for proof of the education (degree, license, certification), don't be afraid to press for these items.
3. Do they have Insurance Coverage? It's important that your artist cares for your well being. Having an insurance policy that protects you, and them is very important. What would happen if you had a sensitivity to a certain product and needed medical attention? The artist should have insurance that will covers situations like that.
4. What's their business set-up? Do they have a website, business cards, portfolio?  These items imply that they are serious about their business. Be iffy of an artist that has only low quality photos and a lot of makeup applications on themselves.
5. What's in their kit? Ask about OHS standards and whether or not they keep up with them and cycle their products out. Ask about brands, brush life, etc. We love talking about what's in our kits!
6. Dress/Attire: In the cosmetic industry, most artist will wear all black, professional type clothing that isn't too flashy. I could very well be too picky when it comes to this standard, but I believe all artist should have their armpits covered, and wear close-toed shoes at all points in time, as well as have groomed nails.

With that being said, I think each artist has their own style and personality so finding someone who's a great fit for your event is so important. Talk to your artist, ask for a meet up/consultation so you can see how well you guys get along. The perfect artist is out there for you!