Although we met Kristen Arnett just over a year ago, it seems as if she has been part of our Alima Pure "family" forever. We are thrilled to add her to our Naturally Gorgeous model roster!
As a green makeup artist living and working in New York City, she is one of Alima Pure's biggest champions, spreading the word about our products here and abroad. And on a more personal level, as a former resident of our fair city, she "gets" our humor and appreciates how our surroundings have shaped Alima Pure. To say we are thrilled to have Kristen in our corner would be a vast understatement, and we're sure you will love her as much as we do.
AP: What do you do for a living?
KA: I’m a makeup artist! I am also a beauty writer for various sites, a speaker and teacher for workshops whenever possible on the art of makeup. I’m the founding editor in chief of GreenBeautyTeam.com which began as personal project but is now its own whole job. So, the question is what don’t I do?
AP: Is there an interesting story about how you came to be a makeup artist?
KA: Yes, but then his article would be 10 pages long, at least. Let’s just say that at 13 years old I was making over everyone from my mom to my friends. I was transfixed by transformation. I think at least 70% of what I know about makeup came out of the zillion times I watched the instructional VHS tape that came with my mom’s order of Victoria Jackson Cosmetics. I sold makeup at a Merle Norman boutique while going to college and then worked for their headquarters after I graduated. Finally giving up a full-time job to become a freelancer involved a lot of risk taking. It hasn’t been an easy road but it has been totally mine.
The natural/green angle that developed is completely the fault of (fellow makeup artist) May Lindstrom who’s skin looked completely fabulous with just natural products. She’s the first person I had ever heard use the words “toxic” and “cosmetics” in the same sentence. I started listening, researching and became a convert. Of course she’s now an expert writer on Green Beauty Team too.
KA: Apparently I work on my website for fun because that’s what I do with my free time these days. I also love to dance, walk in nature (what I can find in NYC) and eat amazing food.
AP: Kids? Pets?
KA: I love to borrow other people’s for the day but don’t have any of either. I travel about 3-4 months of the year, so plants are the only living thing I feel I can be responsible for, and those still require a sitter! I considered getting a gold fish the other day…but that’s a lot of cleaning.
AP: What would you really like to tell people about yourself?
KA: I think by now we are getting the sense that I’m a bit obsessed with makeup. I’m snarky and yet compassionate. I work hard to spread a message of self-love and health through beauty because I care so much about the world and I hope others will join with me and keep spreading a sense of generosity and caring.
AP: Anything you want to mention that you really care about?
KA: Again, we’d need 10 pages. I care about helping the world eliminate injustice and apathy. More than ever I think we are living during a time where tolerance isn’t enough. We are one human family, on one planet with limited resources. If we truly loved ourselves and each other, we couldn’t do such destructive things to one another or to our earth any longer. Is all this Pollyanna-esqe? Maybe, but I’m doing my best to live in an respectful way. Maybe one day someone will find a magic wand that infuses love and awakening into the hearts of humankind.
AP: How do you define beauty?
KA: There is so much that is beautiful, I can’t imagine that a concrete definition exists. It is an un-definable essence that moves the heart and soul when we are still enough to appreciate whatever miracle stands before us.
AP: What inspires you?
KA: People and their creativity, their kindness, their growth, their diversity. I was in Paris this February for fashion week and during my off-hours from work, I was snapping photos of everything and everyone that struck my fancy on the streets, in the subways, cafés. Gestures, outfits, flowers, buildings, birds, and human interactions of love. It was so inspiring to wrap myself in the cloak of an observer and hone in on life happening.
AP: What scares you?
KA: Besides the cockroaches and rats of New York? When it comes to my career and life I take big risks and if it scares me then I know I’m really moving towards something out of the box, which for me is a great direction! "If your dreams don't scare you, they aren't big enough." - Lowell Lundstrum
I don’t know if scared is the right word here but I am often worried about the lack of awareness in society about health, mentally and physically; including people who are intolerant of others, have anger inside of them and act it out onto others.
AP: What is the worst mistake you have ever made?
KA: Along with risk-taking comes a lot of mistakes, so a “worst” is kind of hard to define especially because I try to learn something and come away stronger and better from the choices I make. I’ve done so much dumb stuff, though; every day I do something that mystifies me. I think the worst choices I’ve made have come about because I didn’t listen to my intuition. That includes the time I fell down an entire story of cement stairs on ice. Something told me not to walk down and yet, I did and it changed the rest of my life.
But something I did that I really wish I could take back...worshiping the sun during my entire youth. I spent whole afternoons just baking away to get my pale skin to be golden brown…and I SO regret that now.
AP: What’s always in your handbag?
KA: Living in NYC my purse is what other people use the trunks of their cars for. So everything is in there but the kitchen sink. My wallet, cell phone, tissue, Clean Well natural hand sanitizer (in Orange Vanilla scent – yum!), business cards (never missing an opportunity to promote), bobby pins, a notebook, pen, iPod, headphones, Sigg water bottle, hand lotion and an assortment of about 4 lip balms/colors floating around (way too many!). Generally I have one or two Alima Lip Balms in that mix, usually Fig and Cranberry.
AP: What makes you feel beautiful?
KA: It depends on the day; sometimes it’s something superficial like wearing beautiful clothes, lovely jewelry, a great lipstick or having a killer hair day. Other times, it’s dancing, singing laughing and having an incredible connection with someone.
KA: Oh, probably a lot! Number one is that I rarely look in the mirror and rather frequently I’ll forget to put makeup on before going out. Not what one would expect from a makeup artist!
Depending on what sort of environment people first meet me in, some people will form an opinion and be rather startled if they see me in a another context. I will change up my outfits, hair and makeup just enough to take on a different look/energy to match the person I choose to be seen as in different situations. I think we all do this to some degree. I can really play around with it since I know the art of transformation after being in this business for so long.
AP: Who would you invite to your fantasy dinner party? (Living or deceased, from different eras, no rules!)
KA: This is a really tough question. I think I’d have about 400 people there. So let’s see…Buddha, Jesus, Eckart Tolle, Sylvia Brown, Marianne Williamson, Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King Jr., John F. Kennedy, someone from ancient Pompeii in Italy, Leonardo da Vinci, Queen Elizabeth (mostly for the dress)…yeah, I could keep going, so you get the picture.
AP: If you were given an all-expense-paid, week-long vacation that you had to take next week, where in the world would you go and what would you do?
KA: Why, are you going to surprise me at the end of this interview with a trip?! :-D
AP: We both wish THAT was the case!
KA: OK, just a week and my to-visit list is so long! Since it’s an all expense paid trip I have to pick somewhere expensive because it would be a waste to go to Cancun on someone else’s dime. I would do quick tour of Japan; Kyoto and Osaka. I’m open to suggestions though. I would do what I do everywhere else I visit. Eat the best food I could find that the locals enjoy, see beautiful nature and/or sacred places and get a lot of spa treatments!
To get Kristen's look:
Kristen did her own makeup for the shoot, and used Satin Matte Foundation in Neutral 2 with some Satin Matte Blush in Pink on her cheeks. Satin Matte Eyeshadow in Camellia was her base shade, with Satin Matte Eyeliner in Onyx used on the lid as a shadow. Then (because after all, she's a makeup artist) she used Luminous Shimmer Eyeshadow in Navy as her liner. Luminous Shimmer Powder in Lumina highlighted her brow and cheek bones, and she finished the look with Organic Nourishing Lip Balm in Rhubarb.
Sometimes we all need a little inspiration, especially when it comes to crossing names off of our gift list. In hopes of making your gift-giving a bit easier, we asked some of our favorite makeup artists for some advice on what gifts they would give from Alima Pure.
With a budget of just $25, and shopping for hostess gifts, office gifts or nieces, the makeup artists recommend:
Jessa Blades: Pearluster Eyeshadow in Quartz ($11) with a #35 Eye Detail Brush ($12). “Everyone needs a go-to perfect smoky-eye color. It can be worn layered for a bold look for special events and worn lightly for everyday. This is a great gift to give anyone who is trying to find an easy way to define their eyes and bring a bit of “fancy” into their makeup routine.”
Jessica Belknap: Luminous Shimmer Blush in Freja or Satin Matte Blush in Mimosa ($17 each) and an Organic Tinted Lipbalm in Mango ($7 each). Freja would be the choice for someone who likes shimmer; Mimosa would be a more matte selection.
Terri Lodge: A Luminous Shimmer Powder ($17) and Organic Nourishing Lipbalm in Natural ($7). “These shimmer powders are beautiful on the skin and come in a variety of colors/tones to match any skin tone perfectly.” Or Satin Matte Eyeshadows in Fleur and Raven ($11 each). “These are great neutrals and Raven can be used as a contour and an eyeliner.”
The artists came up with great gift selections for friends and family with a budget of $50:
Jessa Blades: Bronzer in Trinidad ($17), #23 Kitten Brush ($25) and Pearluster Eyeshadow in Champagne ($11). “A set perfect for winter, for all the holiday parties and for everyday, helping you glow and look healthy and luminous.”
Jessica Belknap: The Irresistible Brush Set ($55) and Organic Nourishing Lipbalm in Natural ($7). Okay, she went $12 over, but the brush set is such a great value, she couldn’t help herself!
Terri Lodge had a several suggestions at this price point:
-Either the Cold Outside Holiday Collection ($36) with Organic Nourishing Lipbalm in Holly Berry ($7) for a cool toned gift, or the Warm Inside Holiday Collection ($36) with Organic Nourishing Lipbalm in Mango ($7) for a warm toned gift.
When the budget increased to $100, the artists pulled out all the stops. These make great gifts for Mom, your sister or your BFF:
Jessa Blades: Alima Pure Brushes #17 Blush ($22), #33 Angle Liner ($14), #35 Eye Detail ($12) and #39 Large Shadow ($16) for a complete set of must-have brushes. “These are a great gift that people never buy for themselves but are a MUST HAVE for any makeup bag. And a lipbalm in Natural and a tint ($7 each) for some fun treats for the lips.”
Jessica Belknap: The perfect gift for Mom! #21 Buff Brush ($18), Pearluster Eyeshadow in Champagne ($11), Satin Matte Eyeshadow in Raven ($11), Luminous Shimmer Eyeliner in Illusion ($11), four samples of Satin Matte Foundation in shades close to hers ($1.50 each) and an “IOU” for her perfect match color ($22), Organic Nourishing Lipbalm in Holly Berry or Fig ($7) and Satin Matte Blush in Carnation or Desert Rose ($17).
Terri Lodge: The Irresistible Brush Set ($55), a Luminous Shimmer Blush ($17), a Pearluster and a Satin Matte Eyeshadow ($11 each) and an Organic Nourishing Lipbalm ($7). “The perfect face! A good rule to go by, the younger the person, the more you can use shimmer. More mature ladies can use pearls and mattes and can highlight with soft shimmers.”
We hope these suggestions give you the inspiration you need to wrap up your holiday shopping!