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AOFM Make Up Course – Week One

You may have noticed I haven’t been around much this week – that is because I have started my Professional Hair & Make Up course at AOFM (Academy of Freelance Makeup). Before I continue I want to make it clear that I wasn’t invited on the course to review it for the blog – I have paid to do this as make up is clearly something I love and would like to take further.

When I made the decision to do a course, there were only a few available that did short courses, and in the end AOFM seemed the best choice to me – they are well connected and offer graduates assisting jobs which can sometimes be hard to get when you are starting out.

I booked the course towards the start of the year and had felt like forever waiting for it to start. Now it’s started it seems to be zooming by, but I am enjoying every minute (apart from having to wash my brushes at the end of every night!) I have just completed my first week of three, so thought I’d show you a little run down of what I’ve been up to.

The school is based in Dean Street, Soho – and has two ‘classrooms’ which are set up with portable make up desks round the edges. There are 28 of us doing the course, split in to two classes – my class has 16 in it, the other has 12.

Every day we have been taught by a different make up artist, which has been great – we get to hear their way of doing things, how they made a name for themselves and can ask them any questions we may have. We spend the morning chatting and having a demo, then after lunch we get in pairs and do the look on our partner.

On day one we were given our AOFM brush set which is a really nice set of 24 brushes in a roll. Jana Ririnui, the owner, came and chatted to us, and with Maria Papadopoulou we were taught the basics – how to do a no-make-up make-up look. Put simply, how to do foundation properly. Every day a new range of make up is brought to us, but for today we worked with MAC Face & Body. It was quite daunting having to put make up on someone else for the first time, and it took a while for us all to get how to choose the right shade.

Once we had done that, we were taught how to do a smokey eye

On day 2 Barbara, the eyebrow expert, showed us how peoples eyebrows should be shaped, we had to tweeze our partners eyebrows (omg how scary!) and draw them in how they should be. I never colour in my eyebrows so this is totally new to me and something I want to practice. We were shown how to do a Dita Von Teese look, and applied strip lashes to one eye and individual lashes to the other.

On day 3 Valentina Creti showed us how to contour, and how to create glowy skin. I won’t show you the scary contour only pic! This was my finished look.

Louise Dartford came in on day 4 to talk to us about bridal make up. We had to do a classic bridal look – I found it really interesting to work with an oriental face, and learning how to flatter the eyes.

Day 5 was taught by Michelle Webb and was all about catwalk. It was fab to break out of the classic looks and get really creative! We based our looks on two of hers that she did at Fashion Week 2011.

Day 6 was taught by Barbara Braeunlich – who does a lot of make up for photographic work. We were taught how to apply make up for different lighting situations, and for black and white photography. She gave us a demo and we were told to find an image during lunch time that we wanted to use for inspiration – and we had free reign to create a look that would look good in both colour and black and white. I decided I wanted to do a glossy black eye, Barbara suggested I made it look really messy, which I found hard as we’d been learning to do everything so precisely!

So, that’s basically been my week! I have loved it all – meeting some people that are amazing at what they do and having the chance to ask questions, being taught their ways of doing things – for instance Barbara (the eyebrow expert) likes to curl eyelashes with a spoon! It’s really interesting to hear different ways of doing things from different people and finding the best way that works for you. All my course-mates are lovely – I have made some fab friends. We are all exhausted but really looking forward to next week!


  1. October 16, 2011 / 4:07 pm

    sounds like an amazing course, the make-up you've done looks so gorgeous. especially the dita von teese inspired make-up (: xxxx

  2. October 16, 2011 / 4:16 pm

    i've always wanted to do a make up course, will defo look into it now! Not sure what i want to do in the future but must decide soon! xx

  3. October 16, 2011 / 4:35 pm

    That's something I'm really interested in too. I'm currently studying Beauty Therapy then going on to do a foundation degree in Media make-up and hair for fashion, film and tv. Out of interest, how much did the course cost? The opportunity to work alongside other make-up artists is brilliant. All the best with the course! xx

  4. October 16, 2011 / 4:52 pm

    I really like the messy eyes, I used mascara wands as 'stamps' too sometimes for fashion shoots when I worked as an MUA!

  5. October 16, 2011 / 4:52 pm

    your work looks amazing! sounds like you learnt a lot! this course sounds phenomenal xx

  6. October 16, 2011 / 6:46 pm

    Sounds like an amazing course and the fact that you are enjoying it is even better, really pleased for you xx Looks look great too x

  7. October 16, 2011 / 8:12 pm

    That course sounds amazing and I love the looks you did!

  8. October 16, 2011 / 8:13 pm

    Thank you so much for sharing the first week. It sounds like an amazing experience and I am in love with that last picture. Do you find you knowledge of photography helped with construction the editorial type look?

  9. October 17, 2011 / 9:06 am

    Oh wow, I'd love to do a course too. I love the contour work in your black and white photo! Glad to hear you're enjoying it and that you've been brave enough to do it altogether. One day I will get there xx

  10. October 26, 2011 / 10:28 am

    I was considering doing a makeup or beauty course. I just wish I had the time as alot of the courses are full time and I'm already at uni.

    Maybe you could do some tutorials once you've learnt some good makeup tips!

    tina :)x

  11. November 17, 2011 / 9:48 am

    Thank you for posting this – I have been comparing this course to a couple of others, trying to decide which one to do and I think this has swayed me! x

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