Tips for Your Engagement Photo Shoot...and Why You Should Have One

Many photographers include an engagement shoot in the couple’s wedding package. Whether it’s included or separate, the truth is - your photographer actually really wants to have this session with you. To provide some of the best tips from a professional wedding photographer’s perspective, I partnered with Celia Ragonese, owner of Celia Ragonese Wedding Photography. Not only is Celia incredibly kind and thoughtful, she is meticulous with her attention to details and so talented in her craft.

Jenny & Sean / Longwood Gardens / Photo: Celia Ragonese Photography / Makeup: JKo Beauty

Jenny & Sean / Longwood Gardens / Photo: Celia Ragonese Photography / Makeup: JKo Beauty

When to schedule your engagement photo shoot…

According to Celia, “engagement photos can be done at any point before the wedding, but it’s great to get them done outside of peak wedding season, which can start in April with a short break during the summer and then starts up again for August through October. My favorite time of year for engagement photos is late October / early November because the foliage combined with golden hour is simply stunning. Having a late fall engagement session means you’re working with temperatures that won’t melt makeup and lower humidity for hair. Guys also like this time of year because they can be comfortable in jackets and jeans. And I love a cute jacket on a bride-to-be with her dress, too! I only recommend not waiting an entire year out, so your memory of how to be in front of the camera stays fresh. It’s so important to get comfortable in front of the camera BEFORE your wedding day.” Yes it’s true, you will most likely need a bit of practice in front of the camera. Celia adds, “When planning an engagement session, it’s best to think about Monday through Thursday because weekends are booked with weddings for wedding vendors. My recommendation for couples is to try to plan a day where work is less busy and leave a few hours early to get hair and makeup done before meeting with your photographer for golden hour photos. We know our clients’ schedules are busy and we appreciate weekday availability immensely! I also have clients who loved doing early morning sessions at popular places like Longwood Gardens during the weekday where we can beat the crowds, which is always helpful!”

Jenny & Sean / Longwood Gardens / Photo: Celia Ragonese Photography / Makeup: JKo Beauty

Jenny & Sean / Longwood Gardens / Photo: Celia Ragonese Photography / Makeup: JKo Beauty

How to handle bad weather on your scheduled shoot date…

Celia tells her couples to stay positive and flexible – and to be mentally prepared for weather to not cooperate. “I’ll contact clients a few days in advance once their session is on the 10-day forecast if it looks like the weather will be crazy rainy, hot, or cold.” She adds that in 2018, there were many weekend rainstorms that started Thursday or Friday. As a result, she tried to get a lot sessions done earlier in the week. If you have a hair and makeup appointment scheduled for the day, Celia recommends not being shy about coordinating details with everyone via email.

Jenny & Sean / Longwood Gardens / Photo: Celia Ragonese Photography / Makeup: JKo Beauty

Jenny & Sean / Longwood Gardens / Photo: Celia Ragonese Photography / Makeup: JKo Beauty

Jenny & Sean / Celia Ragonese Photography / Makeup by JKo Beauty

Jenny & Sean / Celia Ragonese Photography / Makeup by JKo Beauty

Scheduling professional hair and makeup services for your engagement shoot…

“Professional hair and make-up for an engagement session is such a gift! I love it when a bride-to-be can feel extra special and have hair and makeup taken care of so she is relaxed and confident for her engagement session. This confidence boost is a definite bonus – and really shows in photos.” The other bonus, Celia adds is, “seeing how the hair and makeup translates to photos. Many brides are surprised at how natural bridal makeup can look in photos versus in real life, and while makeup is a personal choice for each person, doing a little extra with hair and makeup can really elevate your photos. Make no mistake: professional hair and makeup make a difference!” Brides often inquire about scheduling their wedding day trial for their engagement photos. While I highly recommend having your hair and makeup done, I do not necessarily recommend using the session as a wedding day look preview. A few factors to consider are time, place and attire. Typically your engagement photos are outside, in a place that is more relaxed or less formal and your outfit choice suits your setting. Couples often coordinate their clothes, including denim, pops of color and a more casual, comfortable overall style. My advice is to choose a hair and makeup look to appropriately compliment your engagement shoot style. In addition, your trial should be relaxed with an opportunity to try different styles or options. You may ultimately make a few adjustments or leave your appointment wearing a style to consider for the wedding day. Your engagement shoot is the perfect opportunity to create a baseline to your Big Day look.

Jenny & Sean / Celia Ragonese Photography / Makeup by JKo Beauty

Jenny & Sean / Celia Ragonese Photography / Makeup by JKo Beauty

Just as you want to have a trial run of your hair and makeup, think of your shoot as a trial as well.

Celia feels that engagement sessions provide an opportunity to best to tell the story of the two of you and how you are together because there’s so much going on during the wedding day. She believes “it’s crucial to get to know your wedding photographer’s style with posing and cues, and for your photographer to learn what is most comfortable for you and how best to guide you. The goal is to make sure you’re both more relaxed on the wedding day.”

Jenny & Sean / Longwood Gardens / Photo: Celia Ragonese Photography / Makeup: JKo Beauty

Jenny & Sean / Longwood Gardens / Photo: Celia Ragonese Photography / Makeup: JKo Beauty

To see more of Celia’s beautiful work, visit her website or follow her on instagram.

Jenny & Sean / Longwood Gardens / Photo: Celia Ragonese Photography / Makeup: JKo Beauty

Jenny & Sean / Longwood Gardens / Photo: Celia Ragonese Photography / Makeup: JKo Beauty

Jenny & Sean / Celia Ragonese Photography / Makeup by JKo Beauty

Jenny & Sean / Celia Ragonese Photography / Makeup by JKo Beauty

JKo Beauty Feature in Philadelphia Wedding Magazine

I am so honored to have had the opportunity to contribute to Philadelphia Wedding Magazine. I am very passionate about providing helpful information and tips to brides and couples. So when one of the writers reached out to me to contribute, I was ecstatic! My feature is a short and sweet guide on how to prepare for your wedding day makeup trial. Thank you, again, to Philadelphia Wedding Magazine for the opportunity!

Check out the article here.


2018 JKo Beauty Highlights

After working as a freelance makeup artist for over 20 years, I started JKo Beauty in 2017. I am so happy to share how JKo Beauty has grown in 2 years. A very special thank you to so many amazing couples and clients who have and continue to support my small business.

Photo: Kimberly Kunda Photography

Photo: Kimberly Kunda Photography

2018 started with a fabulous wedding on Saturday, January 6. It was the first Saturday of the year and I had the pleasure of working with a beautiful couple, Maya and Fred. Their wedding was featured in The Philadelphia Inquirer and An interesting fun fact, not only does this couple resemble the Royal Couple, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, but Meghan’s style was very much like Maya’s bridal style.

Kimberly Kunda Photography

Kimberly Kunda Photography

In March, I had the pleasure of working with Jamie and Rick for their awesome engagement photo shoot. They had actually won a shoot with an incredible list of vendors. The shoot was not only awesome but so is their story. Check it out here, where it was featured on Philly In Love.

Heart & Rae Photography

Heart & Rae Photography

Heart & Rae Photography

Heart & Rae Photography

I attended the celebration of the inaugural issue of Modern Luxury Weddings Philadelphia Magazine in June. The party was at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA) - which is also an incredible place to have a wedding.

After having won the Philly A-List Best Wedding Hair & Makeup, which was announced in late December 2017, JKo Beauty finished as a Top 3 Finalist in the Philly Happening contest for Best On-Site Makeup which was announced in June. For the second year in a row, JKo Beauty also won The Knot Best of Weddings and Wedding Wire Couples’ Choice Awards.

I attended the launch of the Philadelphia Wedding Magazine at the Barnes Museum in June. I am so happy to be featured in this fun issue dedicated to parties.


In July, Philadelphia Style Magazine published their Best of Style issue and JKo Beauty was chosen as an editors’ choice for Best of Style, Best Makeup. We celebrated at the Kimmel Center for the Best of Style Party…such an awesome party!

I traveled to Las Vegas for a week in November to attend the Wedding MBA with over 5500 other wedding professionals from around the world. My goal was to gain insight and learn ways to better serve my brides and couples. And I certainly did!


In December, I attended the launch party for the latest Philadelphia Wedding Magazine at the new Terrain Gardens in Devon. This new venue is gorgeous and I am so excited to work with couples who have chosen it for their Big Day in 2019. In this special issue all about “What the Pros Know,” I had the opportunity of contributing to the magazine. My section is about how brides can be best prepared for their wedding day makeup trial.

Also in December, the second issue of Modern Luxury Weddings Philadelphia was released. And it is stunning! I am so excited to be featured in this issue as well.

2018 ended with a sweet and beautiful bride and her lovely bridal party on New Year’s Eve. These ladies were so much fun and we had a blast during our glam time. What a perfect way to finish a fabulous year!

Cheers to a new year full of all good things! Thank you so much to all of you who were a part of an incredible year for me and JKo Beauty! May your 2019 be full of joy, love, laughs and many blessings!

Styled Shoot

Styled shoots can be so much fun and this one definitely was! Sam from Asya Photography had actually just shot for Emma and Eric’s real wedding one month before. What a cool way to spend your one month anniversary?! The Kimmel Center in Philadelphia is a beautiful venue for weddings as well as capturing beautiful photos. Elegant, luxurious and romantic is how I would describe the style of this wedding shoot.

Vendor List:

Floral: Papertini

Photography: Asya Photography (Sam Shuma)

Bridal Gown: Unveiled

Makeup: JKo Beauty

Hair: Ariel Katrina

Garces Events / The Kimmel Center

Rentals: South Jersey Party Rental & BBJ

Invitations: Papertree

Beauty Breakdown:

The makeup I did for Emma is one that is timeless and classic, it is romantic with a touch of glamour. I kept her skin glowing and fresh and added soft touches of highlighting and contouring to define her bone structure. She has naturally full and beautifully shaped brows. I cleaned up their shape and only enhanced their natural beauty. Emma has such beautiful eyes so I added intensity to them so they would be the focus of her look.

Tips for Choosing Your Wedding Day Makeup Look

Choosing your wedding day makeup look can be exciting but also overwhelming. Where do you look for inspiration and ideas? Should you do something different from what you usually do? Do you need that much makeup? How will you look your best and not like someone else? These are just a few of the questions that I regularly hear from brides. At JKo Beauty, we specialize in bridal makeup. I personally have worked with brides for over 20 years and those on my team have years of experience as well. I have broken down a few very helpful tips to help you choose your wedding day makeup look.

Consider what you normally wear for special occasions or events. Often times brides wear little or light makeup everyday. This may be because of their lifestyle or their profession…maybe it’s just what makes them feel their best. However many of these ladies like to experiment or wear much more makeup for special events or occasions. If you like to wear a bold lip, this is a great time to wear a stylish red or a pretty pink or berry shade. These colors are timeless, glamorous and feminine. If you prefer smokey eyes, go for it! This look can be subtle yet stunning on a bride. If you prefer something more natural on your wedding day, keep in mind that the “no-makeup” makeup look is actually a full face of makeup.

Photo Credit: Carly Fuller Photography

Photo Credit: Carly Fuller Photography

Keep your overall wedding style in mind. For example, an outdoor ceremony in the afternoon or beach wedding is very different from a black-tie, evening ceremony. Your look should match the overall style. I always recommend choosing your venue or style of venue, then your gown and then your hair and makeup look. Everything should work together, in a harmonious and complimentary style.

Consider the season or time of year. Summer weddings, for instance, can be hot or humid and wearing a heavy eye makeup style with a heavier complexion look may not feel as good. Instead try a soft, glowing complexion with a bright or soft lip shade and subtle shimmer for your eyes. A winter wedding can be a perfect time for a bold lip or more dramatic eye look. These are only ideas, you should always stay true to your personal style and preference.

Try to stay away from trendy styles that will look dated in just a few short years. A stylish bride can always incorporate current trends in her look. The idea is to keep the trend somewhat subtle. We’ve all giggled at past wedding photos, but just remember, that was a fashion trend at that time! So when you are choosing your look, ask yourself if the style is a trend. A prime example is what is know as “Instaglam.” Bold brows, maybe even ombre brows, dramatic and transforming highlighting and contouring, as well as strong winged eyeliner are some of the elements to this trendy look. While this look can be fun (and I encourage you to have fun with your makeup,) incorporate these techniques into your look in a more understated or soft manner. Your makeup will look beautiful in person as well as your photos. Forever.

Photo Credit: Grace + Ardor Co.

Photo Credit: Grace + Ardor Co.

Once you’ve considered these factors, discuss your ideas or preferences with your makeup artist. I always have a thorough consultation with my brides during their trial to discuss and determine a look created just for them to make them look and feel as beautiful they had hoped for on their big day.

My Top Picks for the Best Black Eyeliners

Black eyeliner is a beauty staple. It can be used for so many different looks, classic and timeless to bold and dramatic or edgy. How many black eyeliners do you have? I realized that not only do I have an entire section devoted to black eyeliners in one of my makeup drawers but I actually use them all. So why have so many? Can't I use the same one for a variety of looks? Well of course I can, but there really is a difference! If you are not a fan of black and prefer something softer like brown or grey, that's ok. The following tips apply to any eyeliner, not just black. I have listed each product I am currently using and which look I prefer to use it for. Now before you think I am crazy for having so many, I LOVE makeup and enjoy trying different looks regularly. Hopefully this list will inspire you to try something new or give you an idea of a different way to use something you already own. 

Basic Black Eyeliner Pencil - NARS Larger Than Life in Via Veneto

This pencil is fast drying and intense black. For a look that is more defined and all day wearing, this is my favorite.   

*Application tip* Use a fine, angled liner brush to blend the outer corners for a winged-liner look.  

Pencil for the Waterline - MAC Technakohl Liner in Graphblack

I especially like that this pencil is retractable and requires no sharpening. If possible, I prefer this style pencil to a sharpenable pencil to avoid accidentally scratching my eye while applying. This pencil wears really well and touches up smoothly. It is also available in a variety of other shades. Using black for the waterline creates a more sultry effect. 

*Application tip* Apply once to the waterline while applying your eye makeup and then once again after completing the rest of your makeup look as a finishing touch. 

Tightlining - Make Up For Ever Aqua XL Eye Pencil in Matte Black

I like using this waterproof formula for creating a fuller, longer lash look by tightlining. Tightlining is when you apply liner to the upper, inside lash line. I also use it fill in  between the lashes. This creates a much more polished look to your lash line while, again, creating an illusion of more volume and length. 

*Application tip* Be sure to take your time and hold steady as you tightline. Hold your eyelid in place to prevent accidentally poking your eye. It is best to use a magnifying mirror. 

Sultry, Smokey Liner - Marc Jacobs Highliner Gel Eye Crayon in Blacquer

This eyeliner is so intense black and glides on with such ease. What's great about this pencil is that it is waterproof but doesn't set immediately. I prefer that for a more sultry, smokey look. You can easily blend this and apply more for added intensity. 

*Application tip* Apply very little pressure when using this pencil. It is so soft and almost melts onto your skin. Applying more pressure will create a thicker line and more intensity for when you want to add more drama. 

Gel Eyeliner - Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner in Black Ink and Anastasia Beverly Hills Waterproof Creme Color in Jet

I love both of these formulas, I simply can not choose! The Bobbi formula is a solid black and is easier to blend and build. This product holds up very well to heat, humidity and much more. It's no wonder it's an award-winning product. The Anastasia formula is a much more intense black and sets very quickly. I find that it doesn't build up quite as easily since it sets so quickly. But for a sharp, ultra-black look, whether winged and dramatic or thin, fine and natural, this product is a winner. 

*Application tip* Using a gel liner always use a brush that is in good condition and not frayed. If brush hairs are sticking out, you will not get as smooth and precise of a line. For a thin line, choose a thin, skinny brush. For a thicker, more dramatic line, use a wider brush. 

Liquid Liner - Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner in Intense Black

This liner has a felt tip applicator much like a fine marker. The tip has a perfect combination of stiffness and flexibility. It is also truly an intense black and is waterproof. I buy this liner over and over again. It is now available in a Micro Tip style for an even finer point. 

*Application tip* Use this as a finishing touch to your eye makeup. This very fine point will fill in any gaps between your liner and lashes. 

Shadow Liner - MAC Eyeshadow in Carbon

This matte black shadow blends easily and can be built up for added intensity. I prefer to use this along the bottom lash line for a smokey look and applied over another black liner along the top lash line to either set and add more intensity or to create a softer look to the line. 

*Application tip* If you have not created the smoothest line on your eyes, apply this shadow using a fine angled brush and blend over your liner. This will cover and smooth any little bumps in your line. 

The Best False Lash Style for Your Makeup Look

I always recommend false lashes to my clients to enhance their eyes and their makeup look. False lashes are important to any makeup look for a variety of reasons. They may be used to change or enhance the shape of the eyes, to fill in sparse lashes for a more polished look, to create more definition in photos or to completely change or enhance any makeup look. 

There are so many types of lashes to choose from and it can be a bit confusing which one is best for your look. These are the 3 most commonly used styles and why you should choose each one based on your desired look. 

Individual Lashes

Individual lashes can be a single lash or a small cluster of lashes. They are available in different lengths and can be used for a very natural look or a dramatic look. With this style, the lashes are completely customized and can be built up in volume or length based on your desired look. This can be the most time consuming style or the fastest to apply depending on the application. 

Half Lashes

Half Lashes are made to enhance only the outer half of the lash line. They can give a lightweight feeling and a more natural look. These are easy to apply and provide a more almond-like shape to your eyes. This style can also be considered more sultry. 

Strip Lashes

Strip Lashes are a full band of lashes that are applied to the entire length of your lash line. They are a fast and easy way to create different styles to your makeup look. They come in a variety of styles and lengths, and can be quite natural or dramatic. They even come in creative styles such as feathers, fun colors or may even have crystals on them. This type of false lash band typically requires trimming to properly fit your eye. 

So whether you are going to dinner, a concert or getting married, consider wearing false lashes and have fun choosing different styles!


5 Reasons to Book a High-End Professional Makeup Artist for Your Wedding Day

Your wedding day will be one of the very best days of your life. It certainly was my best day ever - at least so far! I wish I could do it every year! It's that one day when everyone you love comes together to celebrate the union of you and your other half. You will laugh and you will cry, you will dance, hug, kiss and you'll be photographed well over a thousand times.

For this big day, choose reputable professionals who specialize in weddings. As a makeup artist specializing in bridal makeup, I can share with you factors you should be looking for in a makeup artist. While there is a multitude of advantages of choosing a high-end professional makeup artist, here are 5 top examples.

Photo Credit: Grace & Ardor Photography 

Photo Credit: Grace & Ardor Photography 

1. Someone you can absolutely count on for your big day. I often hear stories of the artist canceling last minute on the bride. This does not happen with true professionals. In the very rare event of an emergency or unforeseen extreme circumstance, a professional will have a network of other artists to refer you to.

2. Hygiene and Sanitation. A well-educated professional understands proper procedure and precautions of both. This factor is not something to compromise. Please do not underestimate just how serious these are. 

3. Your makeup artist should understand lighting and how it affects your makeup. An experienced professional will prevent the unfortunate disappointment of makeup that looks harsh at your venue or mismatching your makeup causing a faux pas such as orange looking foundation.

4. A well-trained understanding for what is appropriate in bridal makeup. Yes, it is important to look amazing in your photos but it is equally important to look your best while spending the entire day face-to-face with your family and friends. A highly skilled makeup artist understands how to provide you with a look that will photograph beautifully while still looking fresh and complimentary in person.

5. Last but most definitely not least, a high-end professional has a thoroughly stocked kit for all skin types, skin tones, and ethnicities. It is equally important to have a comprehensive understanding of how to provide the best service using proper shade selections and application.

At JKo Beauty we provide professional makeup services for your big day as well as all of your other wedding related events. Contact us for more information, availability and pricing. 

Photo Credit: Grace & Ardor Photography

Photo Credit: Grace & Ardor Photography

Philadelphia Style Magazine - Best of Style 2018

I am so honored and beyond excited to share this news!

JKo Beauty has been selected by the editors of Modern Luxury Philadelphia Style Magazine for Best Makeup Artistry, "Makeup Mavens," in their Best of Style 2018 issue. Philadelphia Style Magazine never disappoints with their coverage of style and beauty, culture, lifestyle, food and drinks, and so much more. 

JKo Beauty specializes in bridal makeup, providing a luxury experience to each and every bride. Please contact us about booking your wedding date with us. We are currently booking couples through 2019. JKo Beauty is also available for all of your wedding related events, such as your engagement photos, bachelorette night out, bridal shower and rehearsal dinner. 


Minimal Makeup vs. Natural Makeup

I often have the conversation of minimal makeup versus natural makeup. When I work with ladies who do not wear a lot of makeup on a daily basis, this is especially important. Let me explain...

IMG_6488 3.jpg

Minimal Makeup is simple and fast. Minimal Makeup is most likely what you wear for light enhancing or for a quick pick-me-up. It doesn't have to be natural, it can actually be quite dramatic. An example of minimal and natural makeup is tinted moisturizer, blush or bronzer, mascara and a soft lip color. This will take you just a few short minutes. Or you could apply a full coverage foundation, setting powder, blush, eyeliner, mascara and a bold lip color, a total of 6 products, to create a dramatic look in about 5 minutes. 

Natural Makeup is meant to enhance natural beauty. It is choosing shades and textures that enhance your eye color, complexion products applied to look flawless but feel and look like your skin. It can be a bronzer that simply adds a touch of warmth, like a kiss from the sun...not a week in the tropics. Tricks like using lip liner and lipstick along with a lip gloss can ultimately make for a natural look that maximizes and enhances your lips and smile. 


One reason understanding this is so very important with bridal makeup is the overall wear of your look. Taking the time to properly prep your skin and layer the right products are key to your makeup staying in place throughout your big day. For your wedding day, if you want a natural look it is not a minimal makeup look. I believe in wearing a look, whether natural or dramatic that is enhancing to your natural and unique beauty and style on your wedding day. 

Before & After Makeup Photos

As a makeup artist specializing in bridal makeup, I believe in bringing out the individuality and natural beauty of every bride. Makeup is used for enhancing and bringing out features as well as for concealing, correcting and minimizing. It can be transformative and can be used as a form of creative expression. There are endless possibilities. It's no wonder we are so intrigued by photos of celebrities without makeup as well as before and after photos. 

Here are a few ladies I had the pleasure of working with and their before and after makeup photos. These ladies are beautiful inside and out, doing their makeup was so much fun! The look that I did for each of these ladies was something more an everyday, wearable style. I have not done any kind of editing or used any filters for these photos. These ladies attended a baby shower immediately after our makeup session. Their makeup was done for the occasion and to be worn throughout the day with friends and family. As you can see, these ladies photographed beautifully and they looked fresh and flawless in person. Yet they still looked soft and pretty for a baby shower. It is very important to consider different factors such as lighting, occasion, photography and more when choosing a makeup look. 

* I did makeup only for the ladies. 



How amazing does Dana look?! This is just a short couple of weeks before her little one arrived! 

How amazing does Dana look?! This is just a short couple of weeks before her little one arrived! 



Getting Rid of Hair Static

Have you ever noticed how much worse hair static is during the winter months?  One of the main causes of static is dehydration. In the winter, the air lacks moisture and the heating systems make it even drier. Here are some tips to getting rid of the hair static. 

1) Regular conditioning treatments and a lightweight hair oil can help to replenish and maintain moisture in your strands. Try not to wash your hair too often, this also can be very drying. 

2) Try using an ionic hairdryer. It will not only help control static but also dry your hair faster and create less heat damage. 

3) Spray your hair with hairspray. This will help hold your style and control the static. 

4) You can use dryer sheets to calm your hair. You can even rub the dryer sheet on your pillowcase before going to bed. Try also wrapping your brush or comb in a dryer sheet as well. These may also be used while on the go for a quick fix.

5) Try to avoid plastic combs and brushes. 

6) Use a humidifier while sleeping. This will put moisture back into the air, helping your hair and skin.

7) In a pinch, you can always use a touch of water. Wet your hands and gently apply to your hair. 

Happy (Static-Free) Hairstyling!


Why It's Worth Having Your Brows Professionally Shaped

Your brows frame your eyes and can change the look of your face. Throughout the years, styles have come and gone...and come back again. There are different methods of shaping your brows, such as tweezing, waxing and threading. Here are 5 great reasons to trust a professional for your most enhancing look. 

1) The proper brow shape can make you look younger or more refreshed. Your brows can, in a sense, have an expression. The idea is to have a positive expression, not surprised, angry or mean.

2) Have you ever heard the saying, "brows are like sisters, not twins." This means that they are not exactly alike, brows are not naturally completely symmetrical. A pro can see these subtle differences and make your brows appear more symmetrical. 

3) It is important to understand that the best brow shape is not the same for everyone. Your face shape, bone structure and individual features are all factors in creating your best shape. 

4) The proper brow shape can give you a more finished look. I always say, "Take care of your skin and your brows, they do not wash off at the end of the day." Even without makeup, great brows can enhance your look. 

5) Something I always tell my clients is how difficult it is to shape your own brows. It's really quite simple why. In order to see the hairs you want to remove, you must look closely in the mirror, most likely a magnifying mirror. By doing this, you ultimately lose perspective of both brows. This is how you end up with either over-tweezed or more asymmetrical brows, or even worse both. 

Before you trust just anyone with your brows, do some research. Read reviews, look for photos of the stylists' work online and ask for referrals (from people with good brows, of course!) 

New Year's Eve Makeup Ideas

The last party night of the year is quickly approaching. Deciding what to wear and how to pull your look together is probably one of your biggest tasks for this special night. Let's be honest, we not only want to spend the last night of the year with those that are most important to us, but we want to feel good and look amazing! 

Here are a few ideas to have fun with your makeup, this is the night for glitter, glow and glam!

1) Go for glitter on your eyes. You can try using a cream shadow first, then press a glitter eyeshadow over it. I recommend you look for a fine glitter versus a more chunky texture. 

2) Try a dramatic winged liner. Or even better yet, a dramatic winged liner...with glitter or metallic liquid liner. 

3) Metallic smokey eye makeup can be coordinated to your overall look. If you're wearing all black, it's a great way to add some color. Or go a bit bolder and more creative, use a complimentary color to what you are wearing. My go-to is the complimentary color to your eye color, making your eyes pop.

4) Wear false lashes. Depending on your overall look, you can choose a style that naturally enhances your lashes or try something more playful and dramatic. 

5) Try a bold lip color. I always think of pinks and reds as more party appropriate. But why not try a deep stain or burgundy for something more vampy or if it's your style, a bold orange. 

6) Go ahead and apply a more defined contour and glowing highlight. Now is the best time for this bone structure enhancing style.

Cheers to a Happy and Healthy New Year!! 

10 Foods for a Wedding Day Glow

As a bridal makeup artist, my goal is to enhance each of my bride's natural beauty and joyful glow on her wedding day. Of course there are many tricks and techniques with makeup and day-of skin prep that I am able to use for a glowing complexion. There are also many skin care tips I share along the way to prepare for skin that is in it's best condition. In addition, there are several healthy practices to enhance this beautiful, bridal glow. Here is my pick of top 10 foods to eat for a healthy, wedding day glow...


Tomatoes help boost collagen, are rich in Vitamin A, C and K as well as lycopene, a powerful anti-oxidant. 



Green Tea is loaded with polyphenols, powerful anti-oxidants. Drinking green tea regularly is also known to help reverse sun damage. Be sure not to limit consumption, it also contains caffeine which can ultimately dehydrate your skin. 



Berries are rich in vitamin C and anti-oxidants. Anthrocyanin, an anti-oxidant that helps fight damage from free radicals and ellagic acid, which helps protect from sun damage and promotes collagen and elasticity are both present in berries. They also contain essential fatty acids which improve skin's hydration and reduce inflammation. 



Avocados are a great source of carotenoids which improve density, thickness, tone and overall general appearance. They also contain vitamins C and E and oleic acid which helps keep skin soft and hydrated. 



Carrots have vitamin C which helps plumpness and firmness of the skin. They are rich in beta-carotene which is converted to vitamin A and helps with blemishes, pigmentation and oiliness.   



Leafy Greens such as kale and swiss chard are high in beta-carotene, helping to repair and renew skin for a healthy glow. Arugula also contains sulfur which supports collagen production. Spinach is also high in folate which helps with DNA repair. Leafy greens are also rich in vitamins A and C.


7) EGGS 

Eggs help to soften, firm and hydrate your skin. They help to protect skin from UV damage with lutein and zeaxanthin. Eggs have amino acids that help in generation of new cells. 



Almonds help to hydrate and soften the skin. They are high in vitamin E which helps prevent cell damage as well as damage from the sun. 



Citrus Fruits help with sun spots, uneven skin tone and enhancing a radiant glow while rejuvenating your skin from within. These fruits are high in vitamin C and contain vitamin B6, folate, potassium, lycopene, niacin, magnesium, thiamin and phytonutrients. 



Peppers are high in vitamins A, C and K. They help with blood circulation and fighting blemishes as well as fighting oxidative stress. 


These 10 foods are just a starting point for a healthy glow for all of us, not just a bride. It is incredible what a healthy, clean and well-balanced diet can do for our overall health and well-being. Have fun and be creative with your food, it's truly one of life's simple pleasures.

The Natural Makeup Look for Your Wedding Day

Are you a bride-to-be who wears very little makeup or just loves the no-makeup makeup look? That doesn't mean you can't enjoy the benefits of having your makeup professionally done. Have you ever heard that it's a lot of work creating this no-makeup look? It's true! Let me explain...

First, your skin prep is critical to the wear and look of your makeup. Skin that is in it's best condition will look even more flawless with makeup. In addition, you'll find that it will wear better for much longer throughout the day. Refrain from picking at blemishes. I know it's so tempting, but makeup will not adhere properly to broken or peeling skin. Keep your skin hydrated and balanced, this will also help the wear of your makeup. It will also prevent dehydration lines. 

Photo Credit: Duca Studio

Photo Credit: Duca Studio

Be sure to have your brows shaped earlier in the week along with getting rid of any unwanted facial hair. Having a smooth complexion truly does make a difference in your makeup look. Of course, having brows shaped to enhance your eyes and face shape makes a difference even when you're makeup-free. Ideally, you will only need a subtle enhancing with products to perfect your brows and hold them in place throughout the day.

Photo Credit: Unique Concepts Studio

Photo Credit: Unique Concepts Studio

Choosing the appropriate complexion products and shades is critical to this look. The idea is to perfect your coloring and enhance your bone structure. This is especially important with professional photography. You want to look naturally flawless in person as well as in your photos.

Photo Credit: Kelly Giarrocco 

Photo Credit: Kelly Giarrocco 

Your eye makeup should be subtle and bring out your eye color. It should enhance the shape of your eyes. Choosing the right colors and textures can also make a huge difference. Don't forget to define your eyes with eyeliner and false lashes. Again, these two things have a big impact on your look in your photos. 

Choose a lip color that mimics a natural lip shade. Don't be afraid to line your lips, this will not only enhance their shape but will help prevent any lipstick bleeding. 

Don't forgot to set your makeup with a setting powder and setting spray!

A professional makeup artist will know how to provide this look, ensuring not only that you feel your absolute best but that your look will photograph beautifully and stay in place through the tears and laughs throughout your Big Day. 

Airbrush Makeup for Your Wedding Day

You have probably heard both good and bad experiences about airbrush makeup. Maybe you really aren't even sure what it is exactly or why you may want it for your wedding day makeup. So here's a simple breakdown...

Airbrush makeup is applied with an airbrush gun and a compressor and is essentially a super fine mist of makeup. 

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One of the advantages of airbrush makeup is the lightweight feeling on the skin. When done correctly, airbrush makeup creates a flawless yet natural looking complexion. It can be especially helpful in covering blemishes and areas needing extra coverage. It photographs beautifully as well. 

Airbrush makeup is available in formulas that are long-wearing, water-proof, transfer-resistant and smudge-proof...perfect for your wedding day.  

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For your wedding day, you may also choose to have body makeup or tattoo coverage. Airbrush is a great choice for either services. 

Please do keep in mind that just like traditional makeup, airbrush makeup is available in many formulas and finishes. Also just the same as with traditional makeup, your overall experience with airbrush makeup is subject to the expertise of your makeup artist.



Wedding Day Makeup for Your Bridal Party

Wedding day makeup with your bridal party is so much fun! Your big day has finally arrived and you get to spend time with your best girls doing what girls love to, makeup and get dressed up! 


Typically what I find is that during our trial, brides say that they don't care and the other ladies can do whatever they want. As a professional makeup artist, I suggest something a bit different. The ladies are all going to be in many photos with you and standing along side of you during the ceremony. I think it goes without saying that the bride should have her own look and style. My suggestion is that the other ladies have a harmonious look together as well as with you. Each individual bridesmaid can still have colors and styles that best suit her features and coloring as well as personal style. However, when you're all together you look like you belong together!

Why You Need a Color-Depositing Shampoo and Conditioner

Let's be honest, most of us have some kind of color treatment done to our hair. But even if you do not, this still applies to you! Here's why...

Your hair color is effected by many factors, hard water, salt water, chlorine from swimming pools, heat styling, the sun... All of these cause fading, brassiness, dullness and even tinting your hair green (chlorine!) 

There are two ways to go about choosing the appropriate color-depositing products. Are you looking to add color or balance / correct color.

Adding color, for example, would be ideal for a redhead. Red haircolor fades the fastest. Using red-depositing products adds vibrancy and depth back to your hair. 

Color balancing or correcting is most common. Remember when you'd see grandmothers with lavender hair? Well grandma was on to something. As her hair was turning white or grey, it was also beginning to yellow. Using a purple shampoo or conditioner can cancel the yellow and brighten not only white and grey hair but also blonde. (If you overuse, this could lead to that lavender tint...maybe you like that?) Maybe you've had beautiful ombre or balayage color. Well if your ends are now brassy or orange, try a blue color-depositing shampoo and conditioner. This will cancel the orange and you'll regain those honey or beige ends again.

Why You Should Book A Private Makeup Lesson

JKo Beauty offers both private one-on-one lessons and group lessons.

There are advantages to both settings and both can be very informative and a lot of fun. Here's what to expect...

One-on-one lessons are just that and everything is customized just for you. We discuss in advance what you want to focus on and the session is dedicated to that focus. At your lesson, we will go over the brushes and makeup you already own. Often times I find that ladies simply do not know how to use what they already own. Or maybe you're just missing one brush or product to create the look you want. We will discuss what products and tools you should purchase and discard. You will have the opportunity to watch me apply to one side. While you apply the other side, I am able to give you pointers for easy application. Again, this lesson is completely customized to your areas of focus. Learn what is best for your features and personal style!

Group lessons are available for up to 6 participants. These can be so much fun! We can discuss in advance what the lesson should be focused on. Maybe you want something fun for your daughter and her friends. Maybe this is a girls night party and we make it all about current trends, tips for application and what to buy. It's completely up to you! 

All lessons are tailored to your specific concerns and desired look. Appointments start at 90 minute sessions and can be extended in 30 minute increments. My goal for your lesson is for you to feel more confident with your products, tools and application. No need to waste more time and money on products that just are not right for you!