Tag Archives: book review

Book Review: The Ultimate Sales Letter

The Ultimate Sales Letter, written by Dan S. Kennedy.

I read this in my continuing attempt to educate myself in “all things business”! Love it! It’s straightforward, has lots of examples from real companies and has several free perks (such as resources that usually cost around $1000!!). For obvious reasons it aims more at people who have a product to sell, but it seems as though the basic principles are transferable to those of us with services (make-up application) to sell too.

This (3rd) edition of the book was published back in 2006 but there is a newer edition on Amazon right now for £8.99 with the following blurb…

“In this new edition of his top-selling book, author Dan Kennedy explains why some sales letters work and most don’t. And he shows how to write copy that any business can use. Among other things, he provides:

  • Completely updated text and examples
  • Great headline formulas
  • New exercises to spark creativity
  • The best way to use graphics

Kennedy is the most successful, highly paid direct-response copywriter in the country. In this book, he shares his step-by-step formula so everyone can write letters that will nail the sale.”

I’m thinking that I may not need actual “sales letters” in the beginning (?) but there is so much information, even in this older edition that you could take into account when creating your website, developing some advertising strategies and perhaps when writing thankyou letters to previous clients (in hopes that they will refer you to others or use your service again themselves!). Perhaps a sales letter would be invaluable when creating resumes and sending out portfolios to potential clients ?!

A fascinating read and I think it’s definitely a resource that will end up on my shelf in the “references” section for years to come :-).

I’d be interrested to hear from anyone who’s read the new edition! Looking forward to finding out what perks and freebies he’s thrown in this one ;-).
Below I’ve included a link through to the 2006 edition and the 2011 edition in both hardcopy form (proper books!;-)) and for the kindle. It’s good to have options. :-)


Book Review:Makeup is Art

Hurray for husbands! Mine bought me a fantastic Christmas present in the form of “Makeup is Art”, a book designed to help teach professional makeup techniques and show you how to be creative and original! It’s written by a host of people and the Creative Directors are Jana Ririnui and Lan Nguyen from AOFM (Academy of Freelance Makeup).

I haven’t read the whole thing yet, only flicked through a couple of times, so I guess this isn’t really a true review, but I had to let you all know about it as it looks incredible! It starts off the same as any other makeup artistry book, telling us how important skincare is and moving onto primers etc. but then the images turn into Art! You get beautiful clean beauty shots, taken through recent eras and trends and then comes the really fun stuff. There’s glitter, colours galore, and some great body art (you should see all the bling!!;-) ).

At the back of the book is a Q & A section with questions such as “How does a new Makeup Artist get an agent?”, “What is the best way to build my kit?” and “How does a new Makeup Artist build up their portfolio?”. There’s a few pages that are dedicated to brushes and exactly what each one is typically used for (useful when you have a set of 23 and haven’t used some because you’re not totally sure what the hell they are for, haha!).

I honestly could go on for ages, but I’ll stop myself here. The front cover gives you an idea of what you’re getting!

Book Review: The Complete Makeup and Beauty Book

Written by Leigh Tiselli, published 2007

At first I thought this book looked a little out dated, but then I changed my mind! It’s well set out and easy to follow, written in plain English with odd words and statements explained, and full of useful information and imitatable looks.
This book starts off where all good beauty books start…skin care! The basics are introduced and explained, from drinking plenty of water to using sun screen, and then onto serums and exfoliators. There’s a section which explains the main causes of certain skin problems and what type of skin you may have.

Then it heads to How We Age, Age Prevention and a generalisation of what to expect as you age. Make-up tools are explained along with techniques and tips on using your tools and why it’s important to keep your brushes and other tools clean.

Items such as Foundation, Concealer and Eyeshadows are each given their own sections where once again techniques and tips are given including a 7 stage process to the perfect base.

Once the tools have been covered, each area of the face then has a section dedicated to it. The Eyes section has 10 worded pages alone (that’s not including the pages with photos!)!

The back of the book has the Looks section where you are shown some different types of looks including Basic, Smokey Eye, Mature and Shimmer Eyes. Each look is either timeless or easily adaptable to current trends. They are easy to understand and copy so it’s a nice little section.

All in all, a good read!

Book Review: Bobbie Brown Make-up Manual

SAM_0013Published 2008 by Springboard Press

I have to say, I really like this book. It’s a great introduction to the world of make-up application!

Bobbie Brown Make-up Manual takes you chapter by chapter from where to shop for products, what make-up termonology really means,  her ten steps to perfect make-up and right into the business of professional make-up artistry. Each section has enough detail to teach you something new, leaving you enough room to use your own imagination and creativity when it comes to actually creating a look.

There are sections dedicated to areas from “Essential Tools” and “Make-up for teens” to “False Eyelashes Application” and  “Bridal Make-up” which give advice, tips and “Do’s and Don’ts”. Everything is written clearly with simple step-by-step guides and appropriate images.

At the back of the book there’s a “Who’s who in Make-up” with information about the likes of Helena Rubenstein, Coco Chanel, Kevyn Aucoin and Shu Uemura, which was a really good read for me as it taught me more about names I’d heard but didn’t nessessarily know anything about.

The “Resource Guide” is filled with American agencies and stores so not particularly useful to us make-up artist starting out in the UK. BUT. If you’re aiming high then America will probably be on your list of places to go, so these lists my be worth something to you in the future!

All in all an interesting read and great for those of us who are just starting out in the make-up world, or for those of you who simply want to up your make-up skills.

Available at Amazon:

Book Review – Lauren Luke, Look Like A Star

Published 2009 by Hodder & Stoughton

I, like many, enjoy watching Lauren’s make-up vidoes on You Tube, and this book is exactly what you would expect a make-up book by Lauren to be. It’s colourful, simply written and FUN!

Reading through each colourful, post-it covered page I definately got the feeling that this book is aimed at the younger people among us. With it’s scrapbook styling and “hand drawn” patterns the STYLE of the book is more appropriate for your teenage daughter opposed to your elderly aunty. The pages are very busy, with images of make-up, jewellery, butterflies and shoes. However, once you’ve pulled your eyes away from the pretty pictures, the instructions are straight forward and easy for ANYONE to copy, which is the whole point!

There are tips and tricks, product lists and photos. Lauren even dons a few wigs to help you get a feel for the looks (loving the Lady Gaga wig by the way!).

This book is clear and concise and great for anybody who wants to see their favourite starlets make-up become something totally wearable and, most importantly, DO-able!

Available at Amazon :

Here is one of her videos: