I used to be a huge product junkie and have drawers full of makeup I had bought on a whim, saw in a magazine and bought or thought I needed from various TV infomercials and salespeople at department stores. I was never sure if the colors matched my skin tone or if the makeup all worked together.
All of this changed after I made an appointment with Jason Ascher at Barneys New York five years ago. He's the Make-up/Beauty Guru for Barneys. This means that he's your personal makeup artist who selects from ALL makeup brands sold at Barneys and can teach you how to apply them correctly.
The bottom floor of Barneys is The Foundation, the beauty department and where Jason's private studio can be found. The very first appointment I had with him lasted about an hour and 15 minutes where he created a day look and a night look. I told him what my usual routine was and what I used on a daily basis. I just wanted the basics, nothing too loud or crazy and wanted a natural look.
He started picking out products, beginning with the foundation. Since I wanted something simple, he picked out a tinted moisturizer that matched my skin perfectly and showed me how to apply it. Since then, I've graduated to an actual foundation and use a proper brush he taught me how to use. He found colors for cheeks, and lips and eyes. I asked him to show me how to apply or use certain products if I wasn't sure I could recreate it on my own at home. I found out having the right tools makes a big difference. At the end of my session, all the products he had used were lined up on the counter. At first, I wasn't sure if I wanted all those brushes since I was skeptical I would even use them. Five years later, I'm still using those same brushes EVERY DAY. About two weeks later, I threw out everything else I had previously bought and only used the products he had selected for me.
I go back about once or twice a year when I run out of makeup or if I'm looking for new colors for the season. My return appointments are about 45 minutes long. He's the only person I trust with picking out my makeup. No more Sephora, no more random department stores with pushy salespeople with questionable makeup application skills. I also continually finish using all my products, which I had never done before. Meaning, I'll actually see the bottoms of blush and powder holders and use my foundation down to the last pump.
An appointment with Jason is completely free, but I wouldn't suggest going to see him to just get a $20 lip gloss. There is an expectation to purchase products, but that also doesn't mean you need to buy every single thing he selects for you. For my return appointments, I'll wait till I'm just about to run out of a few items and will usually spend around $200 - $350. If you're looking to purchase makeup anyway but you're unsure of where to start, he's the one to go to. It's such a luxurious, unique experience. No other department store in New York offers this service.
ONE Chantecaille - Just Skin Tinted Moisturizer
TWO Tatcha - Radient: Deep Brightening Serum
THREE Chantecaille - Ultra Sun Protection SPF 50 Primer
FOUR Lipstick Queen - Saint Eden
FIVE Chanel - Les 4 Ombres Quadra Eye Shadow in Eclosion [not sold on barneys.com]
SIX Tatcha - Polished: Gentle Rice Enzyme Powder
Note: Call about two weeks in advance for appointments. He also does weddings.
LOCATION: Jason Ascher, Beauty Guru @ Barneys New York | 660 Madison Avenue | New York, NY 10065 | 212.833.2782
Jason's Favorites - Products Photo Credit: From Linked Sources