At the Hands of AJ Crimson

November 10, 2010

By Katrice

I enjoyed a quick dose of lunchtime indulgence today in AJ Crimson’s Pre-Soul Train Awards Beauty Suite & VIP Lounge at the Four Seasons Hotel Atlanta. And while I will readily admit that having my face beat by AJ Crimson was a fantastic treat in and of itself, picking his brain for beauty tips was definitely the icing on the cake. A foremost beauty expert and luxury cosmetics designer, AJ's mastery of makeup has positioned him as a premier influencer in beauty, fashion and entertainment. He has worked with Fergie, Hillary Duff, Amerie, Missy Elliot, Keyshia Cole, Raven Symone, Forest Whitaker, Sean Combs, Terrance Howard and many others as well as editorially with magazines including GlamourInStyleReal SimpleEssenceVibe and leading Japanese magazines, Blenda and Luire. Also branching out as an entrepreneur, AJ is the co-founder and creator of the widely popular luxury cosmetics line, Kissable Couture with business partner and co-founder Keisha Nash Whitaker.

I asked him a few questions while in his chair and it's evident that AJ Crimson is where he is by design. 

What's the first thing that catches your eye when you look at a made up face?
Whatever they chose as a focal point. Whether it's eyes done well, that they've done some elaborate shadow or a smudge gone wrong. I don't look for any imperfections, in general. I'm just looking at how it's all put together.

What is your dream project?
There are so many things I have ideas for. I get ideas all the time when I'm working on runway shows and they're not necessarily around the makeup ... but maybe for the production of the show. I'd also like to do a big event that caters to all women -- empowering them. 

What  are some things that every woman should do before leaving the house?
Curling her lashes, applying a great mascara and lip gloss, and maybe light dusting with a good powder. Those are essentials and those things alone make such a big difference. Doing just a little extra can actually give you the confidence to get out and tackle the day without feeling completely bare. 

What are your favorite beauty items at the moment?
Kissable Couture (his luxury cosmetics line with partner Keisha Nash Whitaker) ... Revlon makes some great lipsticks. I'm also loving the Oil of Olay Regenerist; it's a great product for the price point. Maybelline Expert Wear brow and eye liner and, in terms of something a little more extravagant, Sjal Cela Intuitif Cellular Renewal Cream.

Beauty 101: 
Women need to get back to giving themselves that time that their mothers and grandmothers took to look their best. Diahann Carroll is one of my favorites because she understood how to be a lady. Sometimes it's better to look good than to feel good. Looking great and giving a great appearance makes a difference. If you want to be taken seriously, you have to stand out in serious way. Don't be afraid to take chances with your look.

Advice to upcoming and coming artists:
Persistence and practice. No job should be too small or beneath you because those smaller jobs bring bigger jobs. Be realistic about the industry as a whole. You're not going to make $10,000 or even $4,000 a day over night. Those rates don't really exist in the industry anymore, anyway. Be humble and be great at what you do. 

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  1. His skin looks good. LOL! (seriously)...Nice picture of you two. ;)

  2. I think makeup artists know all the best-kept secrets!

  3. I'm not a make up artist but I am a firm believe in three things; Great eyelash curler (Shemura by Sepora), Mascara (Maybelline-define a lash) and Lip gloss (C.O. Bigelow - Bath and Body Works). Item no. 1, The Shemura eyelash curler, this item is definitely is worth every penny. What are the perks about this purchase? It was especially designed for Asian women! Meaning, that it is design to catch all the hairs in your eyelashes and curl them. I love it!! The cost is approx. $20 but last for 1 year. Item no. 2, Maybelline Mascara, I've tried very expensive mascara's but I found Maybelline to be one of the best! It defines every last without leaving a clump of makeup on your lash. Last item, Lip gloss, I'm a firm believer your mouth should look clean. This lip gloss works wonders! Its priced at $7.50 per tube but its also worth the money. A great perk about this item is you can often catch it on sale for $5 per tube!

  4. In the midst of reading this, I applied my Lip gloss the C.O. Bigelow - Bath and Body Works also. It is really great for extra shine, esp. the ones with tint in them. It was indeed my transitional lip product from clear to color. And now I am moving forward.. maturing... to actual lipstick. *cheers

  5. I'll definitely be checking out his cosmetic line and the Oil of Olay Regenerist product. It's always nice to get the inside tip from the experts. Great post!

  6. Shantaa, I intend to try those things that you named. I have an eyelash curler but would love to check out the Shemura curler. You and Lady D make me thing the C.O. Bigelow is worth a try, as well.

  7. It is! I love it! It is perfect for the quick on the go, shine. No mirror necessary. However, I am slowly falling in love with Milani products and just recently purchased a deep burgundy “All About Me” lip gloss from their GLITZY Glamour Gloss collection and it is to die for! So Fab! I found that Target has a more up-to-date collection, than Walgreens, so I will be making that my spot for cosmetics. It is a little pricier but the variety is better!


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