Celebrity Makeup Artist Interview: Billy B. Talks RuPaul’s Drag Race, Regrets and Lauryn Hill

On October 30, 2009, I had an idea to interview celebrity makeup artists. After all, beauty journalism is what I love for! I compiled a list of 30 people to interview, and naturally, Billy B. was at the top of the list. I shot him an email that day, and I felt optimistic. He wrote back and obliged, but told me he was busy, so we’d have to schedule it at another time. A few minutes later, he sent me an email with a single image in it. The shot was going to hit the newstands of a new client that he’d been working with for awhile.

Fast forward to May of 2011. I posted part one of our Skype interview on Youtube. This is a twenty minute portion of our interview. Billy was so real, so much fun, so awesome. His show Hometown Renovation debuts tomorrow, Friday May 20th at 5pm EST. We travel with him to his hometown and watch as he restores the beautiful homes of Mississippi. Can’t wait!

In the video, we discuss the famous RuPaul’s Drag Race [which you know I adore], and someone I’ve been dying to ask him about for years: Lauryn Hill. Not only is Ex-Factor one of my favorite songs ever, the video has been etched into my mind for delivering such remarkable imagery. I saw the video long before I ever had my first broken heart, and during that first heartbreak, this video [along with many others, plus drinks, sappy movies and all the other typical sad crap] got me through it. Ugh, the hair, the cream outfit, the dark club, intense shades of blues, this video gives me life!

For more information on Billy, here’s [most of his] portfolio, twitter, facebook and youtube pages. Add him and learn from him. I’m almost positive you’ll grow!

Edited: The Makeup Show 2011: A Brief Photo Recap

What a day, what a day. The ups and downs, the doubts, the pain. It was a very long, but very fulfilling day!

Meagan and Erin

I went to the show with Meagan Shea, friend, co-worker and makeup artist. She’s a contributor for Afrobella, so check out her posts on Mondays!

I got to see some of my favorite girls from Youtube, including Marsha, Lesley, Cindy and Reena.

I also finally got to meet two of my favorite people on YT, RenRen and Ateeya!!! They were SO cool. RenRen was working at the Graftobian booth.  They are known for their fabulous palettes [foundation, lipstick and powder, to name a few], if you’re a makeup artist, you need them, trust!

Glamcor Lights and Bags

Glamcor totally got me excited.  I got to see my darling Kevin Bennett, and he literally pulled me over to their booth. Yo. I need those lights! They were selling a duo sided light kit that are cool to the touch and easily transportable.  They were $195, and sold out by the time I got there. Grr. And those roller kits back there? Super durable, large, and weigh nothing. Zuca who?

Face Atelier

At the Face Atelier booth, Lisa showed me a new silicone based cream blush. They go on really sheer, so the color looks like it comes from within. I wanted to try one on, but I got sidetracked. Oh Erin.

Sam Fine Seminar Outside Monitor

The sole reason for going to The Makeup Show was to hear the seminars from Sam Fine and Billy B.  Numerous folks told me that the Sam Fine seminar had a line outside almost 2 hours before it started.  Here are spectators crowding around the monitor on the main floor. Crazy. You really need to get his DVD via Amazon.com, it’s jam packed with tips and well done tutorials. Seriously, I live for it. By the way, I did a video on Sam last year, feel free to check it out!

Billy B. at Keynote

Billy B. There are seriously no words that can explain how much I respect this man.  I mean really, his words of wisdom had everyone in awe. He told us why having an ego doesn’t do anything for you, he explained his own insecurities, how hard he has to hustle and why hard work really does pay off. It was an earful of bliss. He even mentioned me in the seminar. Picture this: I floated out of myself, and then looked down at myself and said “Scandalous Beauty? Do you know her? Wait…Is that You? Did you even hear that? Are you seriously comprehending what just happened? You study his portfolio like a calculus textbook, and your name came out of his mouth.” After my heart rate went down and I stopped playing his words over and over in my head, I sopped up the rest of the info that he willingly shared.

It is my advice to you, to get to The Makeup Show. Fly/drive/rail/ in from wherever you live. Save your money a year in advance, because you’ll need it to purchase the vast amount of beauty products available to you. Seriously, it’s two days of fantastic fun!!! Don’t miss out!

Lady Gaga Beauty by Billy B.

Lady GaGa arrives at the 52nd annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles

The one face that so many of us waited in suspense for was no other than Lady Gaga. Most people love her, or they hate her. I wasn’t really a fan until I saw her video for Bad Romance. In those 3 minutes, I was hooked. I won’t go so far as to say she’s so different, because people argue that she hasn’t reinvented the wheel. She’s major enough that she is now accompanied by my favorite makeup artist, Billy B. I’ve been talking about him for years on this blog, so I’m assuming that I don’t have to give an intro. He’s been working with Gaga for the past few months, thank God.  She’s had some pretty major appearances since the release of her newest EP, The Fame Monster.  This soft grey smokey eye and bubble gum pink lip was flawless. I love how big he made her eyes look.  They demand attention.  The brows are simply perfection. Contouring, lovely. She looks like a glamorous woman, a role that she doesn’t play often.  I’m not saying this because I love Billy, I’m saying it because it’s the truth (well, it’s my opinion anyway!) The outfit was outrageous, and she wore it well.  Armani Prive meets Lady Gaga. Lacefront hairline…not so much.

Whatever the case, I LOVED Gaga’s performance.  It was absolutely perfect.  Sir. Elton John served in this glasses and 5 pound earrings!

Billy B’s Makeup Kit @ The Blonds

I could be alone, but images like this inspire me to be a better makeup artist. Since I am avidly building my kit, pictures like this give me insight on what the big boys and big girls in the game are doing. To the right you’ll find an image of some of Billy B.’s products laid out for use. This is thousands and thousands of dollars worth of product! Trust me, this is one twentieth of what is in his kit!

If you look really closely, you can see the Studio Fix compacts labeled on the outside for easy location. You’ll also find a bottle of Duo and hair extension glue (aka track glue, hehe), a pill jar full of lip colors (most likely broken-off lip sticks), sponges (I’m guessing they are made by Alcone, the best in the industry!) and Ben Nye and Iman loose powders inside MAC travel containers. Ooh, and over at the top, you will also spot a few tubes of L’Oreal Voluminous Mascara, Billy’s fave.

If you want to see the many faces that Billy uses these products on, check out his website at www.billybbeauty.com. And, don’t forget to check out the BEAUTIFUL salon that Billy created with Syd Curry in good ole Mississippi, BillyBBeauty & Syd Curry Salon. It’s just adorable!

Stretch Mark & Cellulite Repair

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Building My Kit: Foundation Pt. 1

Since I have a few gigs coming up, it’s time for me to add to my kit. This go round, I’ll be doing more Caucasian women, so foundations and powders are needed!

There are quite a few brands of makeup that are widely used by the pro artist community, but not necessarily by consumers. In a few months, I’ll probably purchase the Neutral Graftobian Hi-Def Glamour Creme Super Palette. I’m also interested in the infamous RCMA Foundation Palettes. Before I order, I will most likely order some samples of the products. I’ve never used anything from either brand, but I figure it’s worth a shot! I’m really loving Camera Ready Cosmetics, Pro Artist Mary Erikson caters to the individuals in the artistry field! You absolutely must check out her site!

Celebrity MUA Billy B. swears by Face Atelier Ultra Pro Founations. I have watched him use them on several models. After seeing the results, I was instantly intrigued. In a perfect world, if I was making CRAZY good money, I would stock up on every shade of Make Up For Ever HD Foundation. Too me, it’s the ultimate. ‘Nuff said.

As of right now, it is in my best interest to do what I thought of all along. I bought a wide array of MAC Concealers a few months back, including Studio Finish, Select Moisturecover, Studio Stick and today, Studio Sculpt concealers. I haven’t purchased Select Cover Up for my kit, I suppose because I didn’t like the way it looked on myself. For sure, Studio Finish runs my kit. I own 10 shades, because it is so very versatile, you can keep it full coverage, or thin it down for a more sheer coverage. It can cover tatoo’s, birthmarks, moles, and everything else!!! If you’d like to see how I use it as a foundation, check out one of my first video tutorials on Youtube : Flawless Full Coverage Skin!