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Photo credit: Enchanted Photography by Marla Michele LLC;
jewelry by Michele Saulson Designs.


Mara Moss has a friend from college who has been using the same eyeliner since her bat mitzvah. Not the same color and brand — the same actual eyeliner.

The Bloomfield Hills makeup artist, blogger, stylist and all-around promoter of women feeling good about themselves, finds this upsetting, and not just because it’s unhealthy. “It’s easy to get stuck in a makeup rut, and the amount of product options out there can be intimidating,” says Moss, 39. “But the flip side is that once you try something new and love it, you can feel and look fabulous.”

After studying art history at Emory University in Atlanta, Moss earned a law degree from Wayne State University and has done pro bono work at Oakland County Legal Aid. But she has found a perfect balance between her two passions of color and design, and communicating with and advising clients in a career that truly helps women inside and out. The color specialist and founder of Makeup by Mara Moss offers individual consultations, as well as special and private event makeup application (including weddings and bar and bat mitzvahs), body painting and more.

With a husband and two young children, Moss understands that it’s not easy to take the time to care about how you look. In addition to applying makeup, she often blogs about topics that almost take on a metaphysical perspective and tosses out quotes from celebs as disparate as Ralph Waldo Emerson and Coco Chanel — and always with this underlying goal: Moss wants women to look good so they feel good.

“I try to encourage women to take a few minutes to take care of themselves, too, in between working, taking care of their kids, their parents and their families,” she says. “Spending a few minutes a day, washing and moisturizing your face, and putting on some bronzer, mascara and lipstick can make you feel so much more confident and ready to face the world than when you throw your hair in a ponytail and run out the door.”

She also understands that many younger women are not comfortable with the idea of wearing a lot of makeup, especially for every day. “My style is very natural and soft,” says Moss. “I try to make people feel comfortable when doing their makeup, and show them how they can use product and incorporate it into their lives in a way that is easy and will make them feel amazing.”

Here, a few of Moss’ tricks of the trade for fall:

AFTER A SUMMER of light gloss and bronzer, palettes are taking a turn toward the richer for fall. “Deep jewel tones are hot for lips, nails and clothing,” says Moss. “Deep purples, burgundies and greens can be used alone or to complement each other.”

METALLICS for the eyes can go sexy or subtle. Urban Decay offers super sparkle for a night out; check out Christian Dior for subtle with an edge; and for a low-key shimmer, Bobbi Brown adds just a hint of sheen to her shadows.

EXPERIMENT. Try something new. Start off with a little bit of color — you can always add more. “I love MAC colors because they are so easy to build on,” says Moss. For example: If you want to try a deep purple shadow but are worried it’s too much, try some on the eyelid with a loose brush; you can always add more, or keep it light on the lid and use the same color and darken it in the crease.

A SMOKY EYE is always cool and can be created in almost any color combo. Moss loves a bronze/brown/gold smoky eye and bronzer for the cheeks. “It’s a great transition look from summer to fall.”


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