What Makes Your Eyes Drop Dead Gorgeous? Ask Christian Zamora!
by Alison Blackman
Twice this year I’ve had a life (or should I say lash) transforming experience– I met makeup artist Christian Zamora who applied my first set of lash extensions (my full review). and then a second set. Until I met Christian and started sporting lash extensions of my own, I had no idea that so many people (including many I know) were already wearing them. I just assumed that mother nature had endowed them with much nicer lashes than mine (silly me! ).
Lash extensions, when done correctly, look better than anything you were born with, and you don’t even know that you have them on (an initial worry of mine). You can have a natural look or get lush lashes that would make a drag queen envious. Once you have the look you love, it’s easy to get addicted because you wake up looking amazing, go to sleep looking amazing, and you no longer have to deal with eyelash curlers or mascara. As one of my friends simply put it: “lash extensions are a bit like crack.”
Since I was so tentative about getting the (initial set of lashes) I went back (yes, lash extensions did turn out to be an addiction from which I don’t want a cure)! This time, I opted for a thicker set. And while I was getting that second set, Christian told me he’d share his famous “five minute eye” technique (one which he also showcased for a lot of impressed beauty editors and influencers at a recent Citizen Watch(#BetterStartsNow) event.
Christian has a very reassuring, easy going manner, and he’s a licensed cosmetologist with tons of experience styling hair, creative makeup application, and custom lash extension application. He was trained and certified to do lash extensions, but has taken him years of practice to refine his personal technique, which allows him to make his lash extensions look so natural. Christian Zamora’s studio at 1133 broadway suite 724 in Manhattan, also offers expert makeup application to celebrities, brides, and fashionable people around New York City. But his real claim to fame (and a lot of his business) is applying lashes to enhance and supplement a client’s own lashes.
So the first thing Christian did was re-apply another full set of lashes. (read about the entire process here) . If you have never heard of lash extensions before, it’s important to know that there are three basic types: Silk, mink, and synthetic (from lightest to most durable). Since I have sensitive eyes and wear glasses, Christian used silk, the lightest and thinnest type, but this time he applied a lot more of them. While I wasn’t even aware of the first set, these took a few days to get used to, but then I didn’t notice them for weeks. Once those lashes are in place they can last six weeks or more if you take care of them. You won’t need mascara, but you also have to be careful what products you put on your face (glycol, for example, will loosen the glue). My last set definitely lasted two months but this time I mistakenly used some sort of product that loosened the lashes on my left eye. Yikes! I saved some, but used mascara to even out the look while the right hand side of my face sported lush lashes and the left looked a bit sparse.
Lash extensions won’t harm your natural lashes, but, like gel manicures or anything else you add to your body, you have to give you lashes a break from them now and then no matter how much you love the look. Considering how much better I look with these deep, lush, dark lashes, giving up the look is definitely, sad!
Before we got started on the five minute eyes, I asked to see Christian Zamora’s amazing collection of vintage lashes from Shu Uemura, a man whose artistry we both admired.
Lids: Start with a light shadow color on youe lids. Using a contour brush (a soft round brush that’s pointier in the middle) sweep a darker color onto the crease . Then, go over that darker color with the lighter one to soften and blend it.
Brows: Using a brow pencil the same color or slightly lighter than your brows, use short strokes to fill in between the hairs to make your brows look more lush and full. *if your brows are well groomed and full, this step could be optional.
Eyeliner: Starting from the outside of the upper lid, use short strokes to make a soft line, then smudge it gently with a brush. Line the lower lid just inside the eye, on the water line. *Christian didn’t say that any specific liner is best. He used a gel liner on me because that lasts longer, but if you don’t feel comfortable with that, even a deep shadow, or a shadow mixed with a tiny bit of water, will work
Lashes: Always finish your look with either mascara or lash extensions. *there are also new lash extender mascaras out there. The Advice Sisters recently reviewed one from Physicians Formula. These take practice and certainly are not for those in a hurry, but they can make lashes appear temporarily longer and thicker.
One of the things that I think really makes a big difference is choosing the right colors in cosmetics. Obviously a profesisonal makeup artist like Christian can choose colors he knows will flatter each individual woman. So if you want to try something new, or you simply aren’t sure what colors to select or how much to apply, it’s worth investing in a session with Christian, or a makeup artist near you. As you can see from the photo, to finish my total look Christian created a smoky eye with subdued colors, and custom-mixed a pink lipstick, instead of my signature red.
I loved the result, don’t you?!!!!
Connect with Christian on Facebook at Christian Zamora Studio | Twitter @czstudio1 | Instagram: @ChristianZamora
*many thanks to BeautyNewsNYC for the use of some of their photos for this article!