Category Archives: Beauty

Say YES To The Perfect Bridal Artist!

By Maya Hashmi

Say YES to your Perfect Bridal Artist!

We all plan and look forward to our wedding day and whether it is a big event or small, every bride wants to look flawless and polished for her wedding and pictures of her special day! Here are some quick tips to help you find your perfect Bridal Makeup & Hair artist!

Trial – Trial – Trial!

The first step would be to look at local bridal artists to get an idea of what you like and dislike. Every artist has their own signature look and as the bride you need to decide what you prefer. Show them pictures of how you’d like your bridal makeup and hair and go in for a trial. I cannot stress how important it is to show your artist a picture of the look you want. For example, what you consider natural look could be very different than their idea of a natural look.

This is also a good point to know how much their services cost, how the booking process works (if you have to put a deposit, sign agreements etc). Make sure you book the trial anywhere 6 to 3 months before your big day ensuring you have enough time to find the perfect match as some brides have to try a couple different artists before they settle on an artist they work well with.

Prep for the trial

Make sure you show up for the trial with your hair washed and dried the night before so it can hold any hairstyle better. Cleanse and moisturize your face to provide the artist with a clean canvas to work on. This will also save time and allow the artist to see how your skin is. If you use any special products for your skin (acne treatments or products for sensitive skin) make sure to bring those along too.

At the trial

When you go in for your trial, it helps if you bring all your hair accessories (veil, tiara etc) so you can get an idea of what the final look will be. If you haven’t purchased your accessories yet, ask the hairstylist if they have something you can try on for the trial. Another great tip I find that helps the bride get a better idea of their overall look is to wear a shirt/dress that matches their wedding dress (say your dress is red, the makeup you try on at the trial may then clash if you show up wearing a yellow or blue to the trial).

Extra costs

Ask your artist if there are any additional charges like travel fees, parking, lashes, installing extensions, up-do’s etc. If you want your artist to stay on site for touch ups, chances are there are additional rates for that – so make sure you get a detailed quote before committing to anything.


Sometimes, especially if you had your trial a while before your wedding, you may change your mind on what bridal look you’d want – ask your artist if they are open to doing another trial and make note of any fees that may be incurred at this point.

Follow these tips and I hope it helps you say YES to your perfect bridal makeup and hair artist who will bring your bridal beauty vision to life!


About the Author

Maya is a 3x Certified and Professionally trained Makeup Artist with vast experience in Bridal, Glamour and Fashion makeup. Maya is also a NARS Makeup Artist. Her passion for enhancing beauty and focus on using high end products drove her to start her own successful freelance makeup business, ODARA Makeup. Through her freelancing work Maya works intimately with clients seeking make up applications for weddings, head-shots, family portraits, special events as well as working as part of a team for high end shoots. For more information, please visit her website Odara Makeup.

How To Look Your Best On Your Big Day

By Noreen Chaudhry

Tips for brides to bbe

On your big day, when all eyes are on you, you want to look your most fabulous best. As a bridal beauty expert, I have made up many a beautiful bride but you have to know and prepare beforehand to make sure you look picture perfect. Here are some tips and tricks to keep your makeup flawless, radiant and camera ready on the day of wedding .

Set a plan

As soon as you have a wedding date,  you have to have a plan not only for your wedding but also for your makeup, your skin care routine  and any makeup shopping you will be doing for your big day.  You have to understand that your skin is your skin and nobody’s advice is good enough unless it’s coming from a skin care expert or your makeup artist.

Seek professional advice

All the brides and brides to-be’s out there: seek  professional advice, not only for your wedding day makeup but also your skincare regime and  how to keep your skin healthy, fresh and hydrated. You will also need tips on how to prevent breakouts before your big day.

Set an appointment with a skin care specialist or medical esthetician and ask questions about  your skin care routine: what should you be doing on daily basis, recommended products based on your skin type and its needs etc .

Set a skincare regimen

After  seeing your skin care professional or makeup artist, now is the time to set a skin care regimen. Schedule professional facials once a month and start using recommended skin care products at home. You have to start this new routine couple of months earlier than the wedding day so your skin has enough time to get used to the new products and any skin issues, like dryness or dehydration, or oiliness and acne can be addressed.

Bridal consultation or trial makeup

The most important part of a bridal makeup look is the base, since it’s your wedding day you don’t have to put on layers of foundation. The rule is keep it less, with medium to full coverage and the perfect  color match  with your skin tone. Book  a bridal consultation  appointment  to discuss the makeup  look you have in mind with  your makeup artist along with your wedding outfit and jewellery. You can book one or more trial makeup runs to get the makeup look you are opting for on  your wedding day .

Prime & set your makeup

One key tip to keep wedding day makeup last really long is to use a primer and setting spray. As wedding day makeup has to last for hours and it has to be camera ready for professional pictures and videos, primer is a key step in makeup application. It locks in natural  moisture of the skin and releases it  over time and that’s how the makeup looks picture perfect all day long without looking cakey and there is little need for touch ups

Quality makeup products

Invest in quality. Since it’s your wedding day and it’s going to be some time for the ceremonies and event to last, you might have to touch up. Buy quality products for your makeup kit, you can also ask your makeup artist for recommendations.

It’s handy to have your own waterproof mascara and eyeliner for your makeup artist to use since there are chances you will be all emotional and end up crying. If you have oily skin or your wedding is in summer make sure you have translucent powder or setting powder, again based on your makeup artist’s recommendations.

Beauty inside out

For a bride, wedding is not just about looking beautiful only on the day of wedding but also feeling beautiful. Take really good care of yourself and try to relax. At least a month before the wedding, make sure you get eight hours of sleep every night and drink at least eight glasses of water every day. Eat healthy and stay away from oily, sugary foods. And the most important ritual is to drink a cup of green tea before going to bed, without sugar and milk. This will not only keep your weight under control but green tea is a very good antioxidant to give your skin the healthy glow it needs.

Go with the flow

My most important advice and  suggestion for all brides out there is ‘to be yourself.’ It’s not only about how perfect you will be looking on your big day, it’s about how you will feel and how you will enjoy the most beautiful day of your life. If few things are not happening the way you have planned: perhaps your designer didn’t deliver your dress on the promised date or your wedding hall decor is a little off or your photographer is a little late or baraat is not on time, DO NOT worry about all this. Things happen but the real deal is, you have invested your precious time, your money, your efforts and most important, your dreams for the most important day of your life, just enjoy it! My humble and sincere advise to all my beautiful brides to be is: go with the flow, stay calm and be grateful.


About the author:

Noreen Chaudhry is a bridal beauty expert and owns Xception Beauty Studio in Streetsville, Mississagua. As an artist whose imagination comes to life on the canvas of each of her clients’ faces, she is dedicated to ensuring her brides have a beautiful, unique and exceptional look which makes them look and feel glamorous and confident. Her work has been featured in all south Asian bridal magazines like Suhaag, Kismet , Brides & You as well as on ARY TV channel.

What To Wear This Spring

By Aaisha Zafar Islam

What to wear this spring

Snow’s melted and barring the occasional cold alert, it does seem that Spring is slowly marking its arrival in Canada, the #TrueNorth.

We all know why we get excited for this glorious weather, it’s time to head outdoors, enjoy nature in its full, verdant glory and finally shed all those bulky layers of clothing that see us through the winters!

Are you looking for some fresh Spring inspirations, deciding on what to keep and throw from your closet? Or taking out your wallet for a much needed trip to the mall? We have you covered, read on and learn what you need this season to stay on top of trends!

70’s are back

The 1970’s are back and with flares! Whether it is flared jeans and pants, fringed apparel or accessories, this Spring is seeing a major influence drawn from the bohemian vibe of the era.

Some of the notable trends that have made it to the high streets straight off the ramps include baggy fits instead of more tailored/skinnier ones, suede in its many variations and bucket bags, preferably fringed.

Spring trends: Flared Jeans

For the modest fashionista, this is great news as we can always look at loose fitting shift dresses and modify them as tops work with flared bottoms.

For the denim loving moms, jeans are back in favour! Stock up on them in different hues and washes, pair them with some bold patterned tunics and you are set for the school run!

Pattern Play

We think Miranda Priestly summed it up perfectly!

Florals? For Spring? Groundbreaking

~ Miranda Priestly in Devil Wears Prada

Do you really want to meld with the background when you head outdoors? Instead of going the most obvious route, experiment with other patterns, abstracts, monochromes, gingham, polka dots, animal prints, even plaid would look better than flowers across your skirt!

That being said, if you have to do floral, looks for prints that are more pastel based. And of course pleated maxi skirts never go out of style in a modest wardrobe.

Spring Trends: Pattern Play

Top Up

The easiest way to turn any ‘pret’ purchase into modest wear is layering. We recommend that you invest in a well-tailored blazer or two in neutral colours for a more polished look. For times when you want to affect a more casual but put-together vibe, it’s hard to go wrong with a printed blazer. Again, there are numerous options and many mass retailers have embraced this trend. You can find blazers in many colours, designs and patterns everywhere. Just make sure that its fits well.

An added advantage of blazers is that they can double up as outerwear when it gets a bit chilly!

Spring Trends: Blazers

Kit up in a kimono

True 70’s spirit, kimonos are a flowy option that can take you from Spring to Summer and ‘modestify’ any top! We like the ease of throwing on a kimono atop whatever tee we have on, pairing it with a pair of flared jeans (of course) and heading out.

We know cardigans are a must-have for many Muslim moms, but try to step slightly out of your comfort zone and try on some kimono? You can also head out to a fabric store and attempt a DIY yourself!

Spring Trends: Kimono

So Suede

Shoes, bags and clothes too, faux and true, suede is back. If an all-out suede look is too much, accessorize. Try on suede footwear, or handbags.

Spring Trends: Suede footwear

Fringe benefits

Again, a hark back to the 70’s, fringe is in. It can be on your handbags, an accent on your booties, or a hemming on your favourite top/kimono. Fringe ups your fashion savvy!

Spring Trends: Fringe Benefits

Marsala – Pantone Colour of the Year

We can finally get to wearing colour. This year Marsala was announced as the Pantone Colour for 2015. It is a muddy red/wine colour, hard to describe in words but translates well into our daily wear.

Berry lips are also going to be a big trend this season and you can put on a swipe of lipstick, gloss, stain or balm in Marsala hue as a subtle nod to the colour. Don’t be afraid, you don’t have to apply it in its full intensity, a sheer finish looks equally flattering on most skin tones.

Marsala Pantone Colour Of The Year 2015

In terms of makeup, Marsala as a colour on the cheeks and eyes is more suited to night outs than daytime wear. Experiment a bit till you find what works for you.

Perhaps makeup is not your area, then accessorize (we can’t say this enough!) watches, sunglasses, jewelry, even a handbag. You don’t have to HAVE something in Marsala, but it’d be nice, that’s all we say!

Remember, it’s more about being comfortable and confident at the end of the day. Make trends work for you instead of working trends! Have fun, enjoy Spring and stay fabulous!

About the author:

Aaisha Zafar Islam is the Executive Editor of, she likes to stay on top of trends, but you won’t find her decked to the nines. Her best accessories are her kids; they are one hard to miss style statement!

An Everyday Makeup Look

By Rumina Rizvi & Aaisha Zafar Islam

Muslim Moms Makeover

Today we will be doing a makeup tutorial. After Eid, and fast heading towards back to school days, the end of August is always party season. This is a look that can go with many outfits, and take you from day to night. So gather your makeup supplies and let’s start away!

Prepare & Prime

Muslim Moms Makeover

Cleanse & tone: Always start with a clean face. Wash your face with a face wash suited to your skin type. Next take a cotton pad and apply a toner all over the face. This prepares the facial skin for smooth and more natural makeup application later.

Moisturize: If you have dry skin, it is better to apply a light moisturizer after the toner. Oily and combination skin types can skip this step and move directly to applying a face primer to their face. A face primer is a lotion or gel that makes your makeup apply seamlessly on the skin and make it last longer.


Face Base

Moving on, apply a ‘base’ product on the face. You can use a liquid, cream or powder foundation, a tinted moisturizer or a BB/CC cream according to the level of coverage you want. Our model already has great skin and we used a medium coverage foundation on her, applied with a foundation brush.

Muslim Moms' Makeover

Apply foundation all over the face in even strokes, starting from the middle of the face and blending outwards. Also take the brush down towards the neck for evening out the complexion.

Conceal under eyes and blemishes with a concealer, or you can dab some foundation on these areas for more coverage. Make sure to blend well.

Contour & Highlight

Muslim Moms' Makeover

Contour: Now take a matte bronzer, or a foundation two colours darker than your skin tone and apply it under the cheekbones, sides of the nose, on the temples and the hairline. This is called contouring. It helps define your features and gives more dimension to the face.

Muslim Moms' Makeover

Highlight: Take a lighter liquid or powder face product and apply it lightly in the areas shown in the picture. This is called highlighting and again, it brings your key features forward, enhancing them. Take extra time at this step to blend away any harsh lines between the contoured and highlighted areas of the face.

Eyes and Brows

Muslim Moms' Makeover

Eyebrows: Moving on the eye brows, thick, fuller eyebrows are en vogue these days, so you don’t have to have them threaded or plucked. We will just be grooming them into a better shape here.

Take a spoolie brush (or a clean, washed mascara wand) and brush eyebrow hair up and outwards. Fill in sparse areas with an eyebrow pencil lighter than your hair. Use light, feathery strokes for a more natural look. Brush and blend in everything again with the spoolie brush.

Eyes: For the eyes, use a primer. This is a product that keeps your eye shadow colours from creasing or fading. You can also use a cream eye shadow and layer powder eye shadow on top of it to make it last longer. We are making up our model with neutral, earthy shades for an everyday look.

Muslim Moms' Makeover

Take a flat eye shadow brush to apply a medium brown shade all over the eyelid area. Next take a darker shade and apply it in the crease and towards the outer ‘v’ of the eye. Use a blending brush to blend in the colours together and smoke out the darker shade.

Define eyes: Now take an eyeliner, liquid, cream or gel and using an angled eyeliner brush, line your upper and lower lashlines. Make sure you get as close to the lash lines as possible so there are no visible ‘flesh’ gaps.

Muslim Moms' Makeover

You can also use a dark eye shadow to line around the eyes or use an eyeliner pencil. Just make sure that it is a long-lasting formula that will not fade way or leave you with raccoon eyes!

Muslim Moms' Makeover

Apply mascara on top and bottom lashes to complete the eye make up.

Colour for the face

Muslim Moms' Makeover

Smile away: Your lip and cheek colour should ideally be in the same shade family. We have used a beautiful peachy shade for our model as it suits her complexion so well. Smile and blend some blush on the apples of your cheeks. Then use a lip brush to apply a lipstick, or use it straight out of the tube.

Brush out and make your hair. Voila, you are ready for a party!

Muslim Moms Makeover

 Behind the scenes:

  • Make up, styling and photos by Rumina Rizvi
  • Text by Aaisha Zafar Islam

Rumina Rizvi is a freelance makeup artist with over 8 years of experience in makeup and skin care. She enjoys doing make overs and photo shoots and events when time permits.

Aaisha Zafar Islam aka Mascara Mom is an incurable beauty junkie. She is also the executive editor of

Skincare, Deciding On What To Buy

By Annie Mian

photo credit: Lorenia via photopin cc

photo credit: Lorenia via photopin cc


How do you decide between $$$ for a tub of face moisturizer from a department store, versus an inexpensive brand bought at the drugstore for $? Both will last you two months, both smell good, both promise you the same outcome. Light bulb! The pricey one glows in the dark!

As a pharmacy technician and an esthetician, I have worked in drugstores and high end spas, I’ve seen the best of both worlds.

We often get swallowed into today’s brand name wars, if it’s expensive, it works, right? Wrong! Your skin is so unique; no other person will have the exact same type as yours despite a similar lifestyle and environment. (Read more about identifying your skin type here.)

Know Your Skin Type

By Aaisha Zafar Islam

Image source: freeimages

Image source: freeimages


One of the most obvious, tell-tale signs that you are a mom has to be your skin. Every day, as a mother we are so worried about the well-being of those we love and care for, that it does not leave any time for ourselves. Taking care of our skin and following a proper skincare regimen takes a backseat.

So stay tuned as we have a very informative series of articles lined up for all moms. We start with the basics and then delve deeper into taking proper care of ourselves.

Understanding Skin

Skin is the largest organ in a human body, consisting of multiple dermal layers, it guards all that is inside us. That would include muscles, and all other organs like heart, lungs and liver.

Spring Clean Your Make Up Bags

by Aaisha Zafar Islam

Make Up & Beauty


A survey conducted last year revealed that British women kept, and in most cases used their old make up for a good six years after it had expired. Beauty products, like all things, have a best before time. However women are more likely to not bother with spring cleaning their make up stashes, thereby increasing risks of infections and adverse reactions to their make up. It’s not the make up ladies, it would be better if you keep an eye on when you got your beauty supplies and how long you have been using them.

Here is a quick guide on the shelf life of a beauty product. As long as their seals are intact, they are new and can last forever. But the moment you open the seal and start using them, the ticker starts on their best-by dates.

On Trend With Radiant Orchid

By Aaisha Zafar Islam

Pantone Colour Of The Year 2014

Pantone Colour Of The Year 2014

Every year, since 2000 Pantone has been coming up with a colour of the year to embody the global zeitgeist. The company has country representatives from around the world meet in secret twice every year, to decide on a colour for the coming year. The colours that have been named as Pantone Colour of the Year so far have been varied, encompassing shades of blues, reds and yellows.