MAKE ME UP: recent makeup questions answered

I have a notes section on my phone that I copy and paste DM’s or comments from you all…from time to time, I read them and have a lot of the same type of questions. Today, I’m answering questions about makeup.

On no level am I a makeup expert. Over the years, I’ve learned a lot from the all the makeup chairs in which I’ve sat. And in recent years, I like to collaborate with the makeup artists. I’m happy to share anything I’m using or what I’ve learned. I’m hoping you will share your ideas and collaborate with me, too.

The below are three iPhone photos. Different lighting (which can make ALL the difference) and no filters. I wanted you to see that for red carpet events (the bottom one), most of us wear a decent amount of makeup, especially if I’m broken out.

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I often switch up my foundation, but for the past few months I’ve been using Dior Airflash (in all below photos, too). IT DRIES VERY QUICKLY. So, if you wanna give it a shot, take note. I do spray it directly on my face (some people use a makeup tray) but I am ready to go with my brush to quickly blend it all over. I’m really liking it. Mainly because once it sets in, it stays put. It’s pricey, but it has lasted me a long time. I even used it every day on the Lifetime movie I just wrapped. And I still have a lot left. Shake it well before you use it. You can find it HERE (nordstrom) and HERE (sephora).


In this photo above, it’s only mascara. But the bottom two photos, I am wearing fake lashes. I’m running low, so this is reminding me to reorder them now. I switch up my mascara often, but my go-to is LancomeDefinicils. But, I OFTEN wear Voluminous By Revlon from the drugstore or $5 on amazon right now.

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Yes, I like Jane Iredale Pure Pressed powder. It’s not too matte.

I also like IT Cosmetics bye-bye pores powder. (My forever issue— why won’t they shrink for good!)


I am using Lanolips multipurpose right now.



I get asked this almost every time I wear this lip color in the above photo (also wearing it in the middle photo). It’s Trish McEvoy Veil Lip in Tea Rose. Sometimes I layer it with another color to lighten or deepen the color.

In the first photo, I’m wearing 86 Tiger Eye shimmer Estee Lauder. It is very hard to find this color in the shimmer. (It’s on eBay for a ridiculous amount). The lighting makes it look slightly different, but in reality, it’s a perfect fall brown-ish with hints of iridescent light. If you run across it, lemme know;)

So hopefully, that answered some of your questions. I added a few of my other favorites right now below, too.

Makeup Forever Concealer - I have two to mix together for the perfect coverage for a breakouts or under eyes. Flesh and Pink Porcelain for me…

Almay concealer for breakouts.

Jouer highlighter in Citrine for high on the cheeks, tip of nose, below brow, tip top of forehead, décolletage and just above the lip line (barely) for a fuller lip look.

More questions? Lemme know in the comment. Also, I know I mentioned doing a Q&A with Jamie Greenberg, so I will make that happen, too. Also, YOUR TURN! As I mentioned above, I love learning and collaborating. What are your favorite products I should know about??

I loved learning about certain apps recently when you guys chimed in, so lemme know makeup secrets!


Those of you that have been visiting this blog and know me are aware of Step Up Women's Network. Last year, I was overwhelmed with gratitude at the generosity of many of you for your donations on my birthday! I still can't believe it.  

(quick sidenote: I'm reading the comments below. Thank you to those sharing your own experiences!)

Needless to say, it was great to be hosting another Inspiration Awards. Lacey Chabert and I have joined forces and gathered our friends in hopes of spreading the word about what Step Up does.  It was a beautiful day. 

Beverley Mitchell, Kimberly brown, briana cuoco, kaley cuoco, lacey chabert, katilin vilasuso

Beverley Mitchell, Kimberly brown, briana cuoco, kaley cuoco, lacey chabert, katilin vilasuso


Every year, one girl is chosen to share her moving, inspirational "testimony." About 20-30 girls walked out on stage and reported where they will be attending college next year. The majority of these girls are first generation high school graduates. Another group of alumnae (it looks like I misspelled that, but I looked up the plural form of female graduates!) came out and shared where they already graduated and where they will be working. It's such a honor to listen to them talk about their successes. I loved watching my friend Kaitlin Vilasuso's reaction to hearing about Step Up for the first time.

I loved that the high school girls of Step Up that want to be journalists were in the press line asking questions. I was asked what I would tell my younger self 20 years ago. Such a good question for us to all ask ourselves!! I said, "Oh, hope you do not worry so much. It's all gonna work itself out. Focus on the present and be your best YOU today." Now, if I can only take my own advice. Oh, and then I added to enjoy your youth! 

Regina Hall was honored. My favorite line she said to the Step Up girls: pursue excellence, not likes. In a world of social media, this is so important. 

Finally, and selfishly, I love this day because I get to see many friends all in one place. They inspire me. 

This year, I am vowing to do more in the mentorship department. Every little helps, whether we are giving our time or a little donation, or a big one. Programs like Step Up make it very feasible for us to make a difference in someone's life.


The picture above with Lacey Chabert and journalist and activist Lisa Ling was also taken two years ago when we were all pregnant. We promised each other to get the littles together for a playdate soon.

Kim/Amy/Lisa Step up.JPG

Since I do talk about fashion here.... here are a few details on the clothes/my dress. I liked wearing this dress- at $65, you can't really go wrong. Perfect for year round parties, summer weddings, etc. It comes in five colors, so check it out. I am wearing a size us 4 and it was very fitted. I actually had to clasp the back before I zipped it up, but it holds you in really well. I love the cobalt blue and just ordered a 6 to see the difference. Nordstrom is so easy to return if it doesn't work. I also found it on Topshop's site HERE in a deeper blood red!! On both sites, they are selling fast, FYI.

And I have about worn out my nude heels-- right now they are on sale under $50. These elongate your legs (close toed or open strappy). Since the bow and the red color were the focus of my dress, I kept the jewelry to a minimum. I did my own makeup which sometimes works for me and sometimes doesn't. Ha! I like this great highlighter to even out my skin and make my shoulders and cheekbones shine a bit (use sparingly) on top of my lotion. I attempted to use a self tanner the night before, but it didn't work that well overnight, so I mixed Sally Hansen's spray on tan (they also make a body makeup) with baby lotion!

(Tip: if you do this, mix it well. Use more lotion that spray. I stand over an old towel because it can get little bits of makeup on the floor. I quickly take the blow dryer and go over my body to set it once it looks even enough. THEN BEFORE I PUT ON THE DRESS, I take the old towel and gently rub over my legs and arms to make sure the makeup doesn't rub off on the dress. This sounds like a lot of work, and it IS! But, for certain events, it's worth it and once I got the hang of it, I can do it very fast. This was how we evened out my skin in all those swamp scenes on True Blood. On Bold and Beautiful or other soaps, we have BODY MAKEUP artists that come and make your skin even and tan and glow. No joke! Many actresses like to spray tan regularly so they don't have to wear so much body makeup.)

Step Up with bri Kaley Julie bowen.JPG
taking a quick selfie with Lisa Ling

taking a quick selfie with Lisa Ling

Finally, I have to mention a few of the other gorgeous dresses my friends wore. I am VERY into polka dots and fun prints. Amy Davidson wore the cute dress with a cut out back- darling summer frock. And Beverley Mitchell wore the pretty floral print. My girlfriend Kaitlin Vilasuso wore the stunning white Ted Baker dress. 

Thanks for visiting!! 

Have a great week....

xoxo AAJ


A new year brings out the best in people. Who doesn't love a fresh start? As we resolve to be our best selves, weight loss and healthier living are often part of that resolution. But what about being the best version of yourself IMMEDIATELY like some of our favorite stars?

I read through the emails via the "contact" section of this site and found that many of you inquired about camera ready tips.  On this Golden Globes Sunday, I started thinking back to events I've attended and what it took to get "red carpet" ready. 

After years on daytime soaps and primetime television, I've had time to pick up some smoke and mirror tricks on looking thinner. I've also had great mentors in wardrobe and makeup departments that have taught me well. I thank them for all their assistance! Here's my list:


If you've followed my blog at all, you've heard me discuss my love of "help" with compression undergarments in all stages of my life: pre-pregnancy, pregnancy, postpartum and today. These new discoveries in shapewear are not your grandmother's girdle (if you're too young to remember that word, sorry!). I love a smooth look (like this dress in the picture below).


Blend in blemishes (veins, stretch marks, cellulite, brown spots) with a great DIY faux tan. A shade darker can take pounds off. With paraben free options widely available now, there's not a reason in the world to not have a little fun and look like you had a vacation (when you were really just binge watching tv!).

Looking back at this HBO event I attended for TRUE BLOOD, I'm reminded how much a spray tan or a DIY bottle tan can help the overall look. 


This helps take down the roundness in my face if I feel puffy. If you are having any hair loss postpartum, this is an excellent way to camouflage it!


Create cheek bones that may not actually be that prominent. Take what you have naturally and enhance it.


No matter what color your skin is, if your shoes match your skin tone, it elongates the leg. And perhaps the oldest trick in the book is to add inches with a higher heel. Do both and you've sufficiently tricked the eye and taken off some pounds. If you're looking for a designer heel without the designer prices, check out the RealReal


Wearing monochromatic colors is one of my favorite techniques to implement! Wearing one hue from top to bottom means you go shopping in your own closet, too! Put together some of your basic items...mix high end pieces with vintage or inexpensive trends and create a great outfit. 


My savvy friend Ali recently blogged about an outfit and it wasn't until now that I realized it was nearly all monochromatic! Take a look at the post here . She also implemented my final idea....


Ali wore a necklace that commanded attention, drawing the eye up to the neckline. Use this same technique by showing off your favorite part of your outfit or body. Wear a shorter dress if you love your calves or legs, or show off your shoulders with a sleeveless neckline and some statement earrings. 

If you have your own ideas or have questions, we'd like to hear your comments! xoxo