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The Blind Gypsy, A Makeup Artist & BBB

Abby is on the job sitting cross legged in her PJs (gray bottoms & white top with a gray collar) with a teal Abby logo laptop on her lap. Sporting her signature explosive hairstyle, she is wearing a headset with microphone and her white cane is propped up next to her.

The Blind Gypsy, Makeup Artist & BBB

Image #1 The Blind Gypsy aka Eileen Robinson Eileen is sitting on a red sofa with her cat making a funny face with her wide open mouth and eyes are closed.
Image #1 Eileen is making funny faces with her kitty.

You know the old saying “when the boss is away, the mice will play solitaire?” No? Really? Well, allow me to elaborate. Stephanae aka the ‘boss lady’ is away and I’m in charge. What this means is, I get to make executive decisions. Well, maybe executive decisions might be a little over the top but I digress.

So my boss lady is nice but wow can she be intense. I mean on good days she’s like an over-caffeinated Energizer Bunny. And on bad days? Well, on bad days her energy level is equal to that of a sloth on Xanax.

I’ve told Steph for the longest that she needs to chill and find balance. Finally, after weeks of begging and pleading to my astonishment, she relented and we’ve finally begun building our team.

Now For The Secret:

Please meet our Beauty Advisory Team Leaders. Makeup Artist, Emily Metauten, and Eileen Robinson aka The Blind Gypsy have both been featured here on Bold Blind Beauty. Please, and I can’t stress this enough, please do not let Steph find out that I’ve let the cat out of the bag, okay?

Image #2 Emily Metauten - description is in the body of the post.
Image #2 Emily Metauten – cotton candy/trix yogurt color schemes now and 4ever!!

While I can’t share all our secrets I can tell you that Emily is a freelance makeup artist/licensed cosmetologist and an amazing artist. She is passionate about diversity, advocacy, and is so excited to work with Bold Blind Beauty. Likewise, Eileen, a free-spirit with an excellent sense of humor is so energetic I know we are in good hands with the two of them at the helm.

Both Emily and Eileen are beautiful women who are visually impaired. They also share a desire to change societal perceptions about blind and visually impaired people. They’ve got some fabulous things coming down the pike and I know Steph can hardly wait to get started.

Image #3 Eileen Robinson description is in the body of the post.
Image #3 Eileen Robinson

Photo Descriptions:

  • Image #1 The Blind Gypsy, Eileen Robinson. If you saw the original collage it was a meme. I found out after publishing the  post that the meme was not Eileen. How embarrassing is that for a blind girl mistake? 🤣
  • Image #2 Emily Metauten – Emily is wearing a pink button-up shirt with a white bird all-over pattern and a baby blue bow tie. For her makeup, she is wearing bold black and blue glitter smokey halo eyeshadow, false lashes, baby pink lipstick, and contoured & highlighted skin. Her hair is a light blonde.
    • Makeup:
    • Eyes: @katvondbeauty x @billiejoearmstrong Basket Case eyeliner, blue shades in the @nyxcosmetics Ultimate Brights palette, Gonzo and Chaos in the @urbandecaycosmetics Electric palette, Carly in the @shopvioletvoss Ride or Die palette, Dalla and Zola in the @juviasplace Masquerade palette, @makeupforeverofficial Diamond Powder in White 1, Violet Voss lashes
    • Brows: @anastasiabeverlyhills Dipbrow Pomade and Powder in Blonde, @glossier blonde Boy Brow
    • Face: @katvondbeauty Lock-It Foundation & Concealer Creme and Sombre in the Shade and Light Contour palette, @tartecosmetics Amazonian Clay Bronzer & Blush in Glisten, @anastasiabeverlyhills Gumdrop in the Sugar Glow Kit
    • Lips: @maccosmetics Spice lip liner, @katvondbeauty Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Melancholia
  • Image #3 Eileen Robinson – Eileen is wearing a white textured top with a pink scarf hanging around her neck. She is wearing dark frame eyeglasses that coordinate with her very dark hair. Her bright pink lip color is a very nice contrast to her ivory complexion dark brows and dark wisps of hair on either side of her face.

You can follow Emily and Eileen on Instagram:

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4 Tips for Applying Makeup with Vision Loss

Makeup application tips featured image description: a collage of four photos. Top left: Clinique High Impact Mascara, Kat Von D Basket Case Anti-Precision Eyeliner, Violet Voss Ride or Die Palette with the shade Skylar circled (a cool-toned medium brown), and a fluffy eyeshadow brush with text saying '90's GRUNGE SMOKEY EYE'. Bottom Left: Step 1, applying the black eyeliner. Top Right: Step 2, applying the brown eyeshadow. Bottom Right: Step 3, applying the black mascara.

“Makeup is an excellent, malleable vehicle for self-expression.” ~Emily

Freelance makeup artist/licensed cosmetologist Emily Metauten of Emily Metauten Beauty was recently featured on Blind Beauty. Aside from excelling at her craft, Emily boldly expresses herself through her unique and gorgeous style. She has a heart for social justice and is working with Bold Blind Beauty towards breaking down barriers.

For those who choose to wear makeup, you have the freedom to create varying styles of looks day to day. Choosing not to wear makeup is a perfectly valid style choice as well.

People who are blind/sight impaired, such as myself, should not be excluded from choosing to wear makeup or not. Contrary to popular belief, we also like to express ourselves! That being said, here are 4 tips for applying makeup with vision loss, based on my own experience:

1. Handheld mirrors

Image description: three compact mirrors and a standing desk mirror on a blue velvet sofa.You know those tiny mirrors that come in powder compacts that seem too small to do you any good? Well, those just might be your new best friend. The only way I’ve ever achieved a detailed eye look is by holding a little mirror close to my face.

Small mirrors, like the ones that come with Sephora gift cards, make it easier to see when applying my makeup. These mirrors increase my ability to see by giving me the freedom to angle and move in any direction.

If you have weak central vision, depth perception issues, blind spots, or a combo of all three like me, handheld mirrors might be extremely helpful to you, as opposed to struggling with distant wall-mounted mirrors. On the flip side, wall mirrors or even standing desk mirrors might work better for you. It’s all about finding what’s right for you and your needs.

I typically use a standing desk mirror for my face makeup (foundation, blush, contour, and highlight). My trusty handheld mirror works best for my eyes, brows, and lips.

2. “Forgiving” makeup looks

If you’re anything like me, you may think messier is sometimes better in some situations. This could be the case with certain eye makeup looks.

Instead of stressing over getting that perfect Instagram-esque cut crease with false lashes and glitter applied with surgical precision, try going for a 90’s grunge-style smudgy smokey eye. They typically require fewer products and less precision – you could call this a “forgiving” look of sorts.

Time to get messy:
  • Try applying some black pencil eyeliner to your lower and upper lash line.
  • Next, select a single color of eyeshadow, such as grey, black, dark brown, or any bright color if you’re feeling bold (this is Bold Blind Beauty, after all).
  • Grab a fluffy shadow brush, and apply all over your eyelid and lower lash line. Don’t worry about being super precise – feel it out, and go slow if you need to. Using a fluffy shadow brush as opposed to a flatter or denser one will prevent you from applying too much product at once.
  • Finish with a few coats of mascara.
Image description: a collage of three photos. Top Left: L'Oreal Telescopic Mascara, Violet Voss Ride or Die Palette with the shade Isabella circled (a pale shimmery pink), and a fluffy eyeshadow brush with text saying 'SUBTLE EYE'. Bottom Left: Step 1, applying the pink eyeshadow. Bottom Right: Step 2, applying the black mascara.
Subtle Eye

If you’re after a look that’s less bold

  • Skip the black eyeliner – select a more subdued shade of eyeshadow closer to your skin tone (perhaps a shimmery pink, champagne gold, or bronze) and apply it with your finger or a fluffy brush in a similar fashion.
  • Finish with one or two coats of mascara.

When it comes to lips, sheer lip glosses and sheer nude lipsticks will generally be more “forgiving”, also requiring less precision to apply. 

3. Practice makes perfect (what is perfect, anyway?)

Have you ever sat in your room with an instrument, playing your favorite song over and over until it sounds a little better? Or maybe you’ve met with your friends at the basketball court on a particular day every week, getting better with every game you play? Well, you can apply the same principal to makeup (no pun intended…or maybe I did intend it). Set aside some time to simply sit down and practice doing your makeup (I like to put on some music or a podcast while doing so.)

Allowing yourself that time—however short or long—to experiment and play with your products can alleviate a lot of the pressure to get it right every time. You can turn it into a group activity – just like the basketball players who meet up to practice together. Invite some of your friends over who are also beauty enthusiasts; practice applying makeup together, and of course, cheer each other on! You can even turn it into a spa night by doing facial masks afterward.

4. Take your time!

Patience is key to learning any new skill, and that goes for anyone regardless of sight loss. Even if you’ve been doing your makeup for years, there’s always something new to learn—that’s one of the things I love most about it.

Be patient with yourself. The more you practice (see Tip #3), the more natural it will become to you.

It’s important to remember everyone’s visual capabilities are different. Therefore everyone’s methods of applying makeup may vary. Just because you do something differently or it comes out looking differently than someone else’s, does not mean it’s the wrong way or it’s not good enough. You are good enough.

Image Descriptions:

  • Featured Image – ’90s Grunge Smokey Eye – a collage of four photos. Top left: Clinique High Impact Mascara, Kat Von D Basket Case Anti-Precision Eyeliner, Violet Voss Ride or Die Palette with the shade Skylar circled (a cool-toned medium brown), and a fluffy eyeshadow brush with text saying ’90’s GRUNGE SMOKEY EYE’. Bottom Left: Step 1, applying the black eyeliner. Top Right: Step 2, applying the brown eyeshadow. Bottom Right: Step 3, applying the black mascara.
  • Handheld mirrors – three compact mirrors and a standing desk mirror on a blue velvet sofa.
  • Subtle Eye – a collage of three photos. Top Left: L’Oreal Telescopic Mascara, Violet Voss Ride or Die Palette with the shade Isabella circled (a pale shimmery pink), and a fluffy eyeshadow brush with text saying ‘SUBTLE EYE’. Bottom Left: Step 1, applying the pink eyeshadow. Bottom Right: Step 2, applying the black mascara.
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Emily Metauten | Blind Beauty Issue #24

“Here is a friendly reminder that not all disabilities appear the same!! I only really use my cane situationally, so that means I’m walking around without it most of the time.” ~Emily Metauten

Emily Metauten is standing with her white cane in her right hand and cell phone in her left taking a selfie in a full-length mirror. She is wearing black jeans with holes in the knees and a black crop top. A long brown sweater completes her outfit. Her hair is a bright pink or orange.Introducing Emily Metauten a freelance makeup artist/licensed cosmetologist based in the Boston area. 

A lot of people act very surprised when I disclose my disability to them, some people don’t even believe me. I get odd looks and a dismissive point when I ask for help finding something. I’ve gotten the “I think you need new glasses!” comment too many times when I’m struggling to read something very close to my face. I’ve even been stopped/grabbed by cops when I use my reduced fare metro card/charlie card on the train.

Please don’t ever assume someone’s status (disability or health-wise) based on the way they look! Yes, people with vision loss (or any disability) can dye their hair, wear funky clothes, do their makeup, express themselves however they please. Shocker, right?

On a similar note, I’ve built up a lot of insecurity about using my cane in public – so here is the first picture I’ve posted ever with it. This is also a friendly reminder to myself that I don’t have to hide who I am to fit into other people’s expectations of me.

Emily Metauten’s Blind Beauty Description:

Featured image is a mock magazine cover titled Blind Beauty. A close-up of Emily is on the cover looking absolutely fabulous. Her hair is dyed pink and her makeup is perfectly coordinated with her hair color. With her winged eyes and matte lip color, she is the epitome of a fashion model. Emily is posing with her chin lightly resting on her left hand.

Blocks of text superimposed on Emily’s photo are: “Bold | She Keeps Pressing Onward,” “Blind | She Has Deeper Insight,” “Beautiful | She Sees To The Heart Of Others”

Connect with and/or follow Emily Metauten on social media: