I am a licensed esthetician and freelance makeup artist based in Hood River, Oregon (licensed in both Oregon and Washington).
I have been an artist and beauty nerd for my whole life. My first career as a graphic artist and marketing director honed my eye for visual aesthetics and color theory, while beauty and wellness have been my passions for as long as I can remember. For more than 20 years I have researched and road tested the diverse range of green, eco-friendly, "clean" skin care and makeup brands to find the highest quality and highest performing products.
Why Clean Beauty?
For me, clean beauty is 100% personal. I had reasonably decent skin throughout my teens, and other than the occasional embarrassing breakout it was pretty good. But in my early 20s my skin began to go completely haywire. Right around the same time, I started having major gut problems and was diagnosed with an ulcer. At age 23! I was treated with conventional medicine, put on prescription-strength antacids and antibiotics, and got through the crisis.
I didn't have great habits back then, and my diet was terrible. I smoked cigarettes, ate a lot of fast food, and used the big brand conventional beauty products. Not surprisingly, my skin only continued to get worse and the breakouts become more intense with my monthly cycle. If only I had known then what I know now about the connection between gut health and our microbiome and the health of our skin.
I quit smoking and got serious about educating myself on nutrition and fitness. I discovered clean beauty, and began doing research to understand how what I was putting ON my skin affected my body. Things slowly started to improve as I made different product choices. But still I would experience terrible cystic breakouts every month that eroded my confidence and self-esteem.
Then, my husband and I moved to New York City so he could go to grad school. While living there I had the opportunity to study western herbalism at the New York Open Center, learn vegan and vegetarian nutrition and cooking at the Natural Gourmet Institute, and obtain a certificate in health coaching from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. All of the puzzle pieces were falling into place as I learned that what I was putting IN my skin, via the foods I was eating and my lifestyle habits, had a huge impact on the health and clarity of my skin.
Around the same time, I was struggling with infertility as my husband and I tried to start a family. I suffered an ectopic pregnancy that caused a rupture in my fallopian tube and sent me to the ER for emergency surgery to save my life. Then I was diagnosed with Hashimoto's Thyroiditis. The stress of all of this, plus more stress from working for a tech startup at the time, threw me into a major tailspin. I knew that in order to pull myself out of it, everything had to change.
I got serious about dramatically overhauling my diet and healing my gut, using herbal medicine to rebalance my hormones, and radically cleaned up my makeup and skin care products. I rebuilt myself from the inside out, and while it didn't happen overnight, my skin healed so dramatically that you'd never know to look at me just how bad it was.
I followed my passion and started this business, where I get to connect with amazing women day in and day out. This work feeds my soul in a way nothing else has. These days I also eat a 100% gluten-free and plant-based diet, avoid alcohol, use herbal teas and tinctures to support my endocrine (hormone) system, and feed my skin from within. My Hashimoto's is in remission.
And while I never did solve the infertility problem, my husband and I are at peace with it. I am happy, healthy, and grateful to be doing the work that I do. Hang out with me for too long and I'll brainwash you into believing in yourself and knowing you can achieve anything.
Back to Makeup
The makeup and skin care products I use both personally and professionally are chosen to be healthy for skin, the body, and the planet. After all, everything is connected. When you work with me, you are working with an artist who brings a whole-person approach to beauty.
I am committed to promoting the use of eco-luxe brands that are cruelty-free and free from the vast array of questionable ingredients lurking in personal care products.
Some of the nontoxic, cruelty-free brands I use:
...and many others. I select the best products for the purpose and am always experimenting with new brands.
I will collaborate with you to find a look that will enhance your radiance, make you feel beautiful, and hold up throughout long and extensively-photographed events. When you look back on your photos, my goal is for you to see the most joyful and beautiful version of yourself.
Sensitive, allergic, vegan or gluten-free? I can work with you to accommodate special product requests.
Looking for help sorting through the world of clean beauty? I specialize in product overhauls and makeup drawer clean-outs.
Of special note: I welcome all races, nationalities, and gender identities. If you have a face that you want to be painted beautifully, then I am here for you.
Photo by Gorge-us Photography