Make-up trial Round Up, And the winner is…Summera Studios!

If you’ve been following my make-up trial journey, you know that I started off with booking Shirley Wu over a year ago. Then recently, I had a change of heart and wanted to cancel her because I realized that I was never in love with her look, she’s hard to get a hold of, and most of all, she wouldn’t travel. From there the search for another hair and makeup artist began. In the past two weeks I did trials with three artists: Kavita Suri, Gargi Patel and Ruby and Amber of Xpressions – all of whom I’ve reviewed in previous posts.

Who I haven’t yet told you about is the artist I did a trial with yesterday – Summera Khan – of Summera Studios. I found out about her through Facebook and she herself is a make-up artist, hairstylist and photographer, too!
Summera was the last trial I had booked and after being sorely disappointed with Kavita, Gargi and Xpressions, I was going into the trial with high hopes. (I was surprised that I was actually getting tired of getting my makeup done! Lol)

First Impressions

My first impression of Summera is how pretty and well put together she is; she opened the door in a fabulous ensemble, and polished makeup and hair, and I really appreciated that, given that she was about to do my makeup! We proceeded to go downstairs into her home studio and I changed into a red jora (outfit) that I had brought. (Girls: make sure you do this when you go for your trials because without the red outfit, or whatever colour you are going to be wearing, it’s really hard to tell how the makeup will look.)

Make-up Application Technique

I then sat in her chair and she asked me what type of look I was going for and I told her what I’ve been telling all of the artists in my trials: a red matte lip, and gold eyeshadows fading into smoky brown. As I was telling her she was nodding and seemed to really get what I was wanting and so I hoped in my head that she did! She then proceeded to do something which no other artist has done: she reclined my chair and put a pillow under my back because she likes applying makeup with the girl laying back, she says it allows her to see the shadows of the face better. I welcomed this as it was completely relaxing to lay back and feel the strokes of the brushes on your face!

Airbrush vs. Non-AirBrush

Talking to Summera, she told me how she never uses air- brush makeup on her clients because it was actually developed for use in front of cameras for movie shoots, and that it’s not wedding makeup. She finds that it cracks and accentuates fine lines and that she would never use it on a bride. She also said a lot of MUAs try to use it and they charge more even though it takes less time to apply. For me, all of this was true – I didn’t like any of my airbrush trials, I felt like they made my skin look really matte and I started seeing cracking immediately.

Knowing the Right Questions to Ask

As Summera was applying the make-up I really appreciated that she asked me some questions along the way, which told me she had an understanding of client preferences and how certain makeup looks will change your face. For example, she asked if I liked the inside of my eyelids rimmed with kajol – I don’t – I think it makes my eyes look smaller and doesn’t suit my face, and so I really appreciated her asking me. When she was doing my lips she asked me if I liked my lip shape a bit bigger (as in they draw the colour out on the skin ) and I don’t, so I really appreciated she knew the right questions to ask. She also asked me what type of fake lashes I wanted and I told her I wanted my lashes to be longer, but not horsey-looking lol, and so she did two different kinds on each eye.

The final reveal

Throughout all of my make-up trials, what I had really been wanting is for the make-up artist to turn me around in the chair, and I would look in the mirror, and just love it. The trial with Summera was the first one where I looked in the mirror and I thought: “Wow.” Which, I think is a very big deal for me because I’m very picky and that didn’t happen to me with Shirley, even (but I will give you a proper ranking of all 6 trials below). The only tweak I had with Summera was the filling in of my eyebrows, but I explained to her what I’m looking for and I’m confident she understands my preference!

So, this all to say: I booked Summera!!!! I found my wedding makeup artist!! And I cancelled Shirley!! I’m so happy that I don’t have to travel from Shirley’s studio at 5:30 on the long weekend Friday from Mississauga to Vaughn. I feel so much more relaxed about this whole thing now!

So, here are my trial pics with Summera! (And none of these are touched up so all you’re seeing is the make-up!)

After she did my makeup, she just played with the front of my hair, as I didn’t do a hair trial, just to determine what styling would look best. She recommended that for my face a middle part would look softer than hair pulled tightly back and after I saw her makeup I trusted her!

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This is a collage of my make-up trial history, starting with Shirley at the top left, Amplified Soul at the top right, Kavita Suri middle left, Gargi Patel middle right, Xpressions bottom left and Summera bottom right.

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If I had to rank these artists, it would be:

1. Summera Khan of Summera Studios
2. Shirley Wu of Beauty Concept
3. Amber of Xpressions
4. Shobana of Amplified Soul
5. Gargi Patel
6. Kavita Suri

So that’s all folks!
Happy to have locked down an MUA!

~Safa

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35 thoughts on “Make-up trial Round Up, And the winner is…Summera Studios!

  1. bloggerjunkie says:

    glad you found what you were looking for but to be honest, the makeup in the top left looks and suits you better!

    • safazaki2013 says:

      Thanks for your feedback blogger junkie! I appreciate Shirley’s makeup too (especially after those 4 other trials!) but the main problem was that she doesn’t travel and so it just wasn’t going to work out! But makeup I think is so subjective and I liked my face the best with Summera:) thanks for your input! 🙂

    • safazaki2013 says:

      Hi Naeema, thank you! My hair colour is only nice because of a colourist in Toronto – Tristan at Industry Salon in Yorkville, I always ask him to do the same and he just works his colour magic! Sorry I can’t be of more help!

  2. Sid says:

    Hi Safa, In terms of pricing, how would you rank the six artists? Also is Summera Studios price range similar to that of Shirley Wu’s or higher?

    • safazaki2013 says:

      Hey Sid, in terms of pricing Summera was actually the least expensive of all the artists! Her rate (at least in Aug 2013) was $325 and travel costs to come tp Vaughn where as Shirley was $500!

  3. Tayyibah Abdullah says:

    Safa I need your help!! Usually when I wear makeup, like you I don’t wear kohl on my lower lid, inner or outer, I usually wear brown eye shadow on the outer from the edge to near the middle, however for my bridal look I am being told that it wont be visible in the pics, I don’t think i look good in black eyeliner it makes my eyes look weird, what did you wear on your shaadi any tips?
    Thanks xxx

    • safazaki2013 says:

      Hey! So my advice is if you don’t like the way you look when your eyes are rimmed with black liner on anyday, you’re not going to like the way it looks on your wedding day! Yes, desi bridal makeup is going to look ‘bridal’ but if there are things you know you don’t like, then why risk it for your wedding? In any case do a trial, and then you can see for yourself. I didn’t line my eyes with black on my wedding and as you can see from my pics my makeup still looked bridal and most importantly I loved it and felt comfortable!

  4. Tayyibah Abdullah says:

    Thanks so much sweety thats so true! did you just use brown eye shadow then on your wedding?

    • safazaki2013 says:

      Hey, np happy to offer my two cents for what they’re worth 🙂 underneath my eyes I rimmed the outside with brown and the inside with gold, and she used black liner on top!

  5. Naureen says:

    Hi, after seeing your blog I contacted Summera studio for my nikkah and Walima hair and make up. I finally got a hold of her and booked a trial but I asked her for her address and she wouldn’t give it she just said to google map it. I can’t find it on google do you have it and also is she nice? the response kind of suprised me. Thx!

  6. Fatema says:

    Hi!I love your blog its so helpful!But i’m confused about one thing…you booked Summera for wedding but how come you still went with Shirley for your reception?Don’t get me wrong I have my wedding Inshallah next year and very VERY confused haha so if you can help me out with your input it would be great!And after working with both do you have any last advice?Thanks a bunch sweetie!

    • safazaki2013 says:

      Hey Fatima, thaanks and congrats to you!! So the reason I had Shirley for my valima was because both my mother in law and I had booked Shirley (and paid a deposit) originally a year before. When I had a change of heart, I cancelled Shirley and lost my deposit. But I wasn’t going to ask my MIL to do the same. Plus since the valima is the boys function and my MIL loves shirelys work, I was fine with keeping her for the walima. But overall I loved Summeras makeup way more, I felt like ahe brought out my natural features better,whearas I felt more matte and covererd with Shirley. I felt Summera made me look more glowing and brighter. But the best thing to do is trials for yourself because you’ll never know what you like till you see it. Good luck!

      • Fatema says:

        Thank you!You’re so sweet for replying back and the honest advice.Honestly how many people makes a blog to helps others get married?! I wish you all the happiness in the world with your husband :). Haha you’re right no way can you cancel on your mother in law!! I’m so happy you replied back I initially liked Summera’s work too from pictures but all seemed photoshopped on the web so I was hesitant to believe it was this good!I am trying to get a hold of her and inshallah I can. Thank you again girl and yah you looked super beautiful!! It was honestly your red outfit and makeup that made me want to get Summera for my wedding day. I hope I can still book her IA! Btw amazing blog love all the pictures looks like you had a blast 🙂

  7. reya says:

    Hi Safa, I really liked your blog and after reading it I searched Summera online and went through all her bridal makeup portfolio. I liked her work but mostly all her photos are photoshoped and faces are too blurred out so I dont have an exact idea how well the foundation application is. Also, how does her studio look like? I’m actually getting married in May next year and was hoping to book her for my wedding. I also want to have my photoshoot done there so just wanted to know how her studio looks like so the pictures come out great! 😀 …

    • safazaki2013 says:

      Hi! Congrats on your upcoming wedding! Summeras studio is just in her house nothing too fancy but normally people dont take their photos in the studio, its usually at some location and she also travels to you to your home to get you ready. Good luck!

  8. Amna Khalid says:

    Hi again!
    I’m starting to book makeup artists for my wedding and wanted to have a couple trials like you did. I’m sure prices have changed since however what’s a reasonable amount to pay for makeup trials? Thanks!

  9. irma says:

    Hey,
    I cant even begin telling how much your blog is helping me plan my wedding. ,My wedding is next year and after viewing this post I checked out Summeras work and I also really like it, but I cant seem to get in contact with her. I tried calling her multiple times at the number she provided on her website but it always just goes to her answering machine? I was just wondering if you have a different number or is her number still 647-834-0812. Thanks would really appreciate the help.

    • Amna Khalid says:

      Hi, I’ve been contacting her for about 3-4 weeks now. Messaged her three times on her email as well as FB. I had given up but she replied to my FB message within a week of me messaging her so maybe contact her FB page. Also that is the right number. I hope that helps!

  10. Saima Khan says:

    Hi Safa,
    Your blog has been so helpful, I’m so glad I found it. I have a wedding coming up in September and went to visit Summera because I agree, her makeup application looks amazing, I love how she can create such dewy and glowy skin that still looks like skin. Unfortunately, I didn’t have the best experience when I went to visit her. She is an hour drive from where I live, and it’s hard to drive down to Mississauga Mon-Fri after work, which I mentioned to her. She said she’s usually busy on the weekends but she said would check her schedule, then never got back to me even after I contacted her about it again. When I said I would sign the contract and do a trial closer to the wedding, she miraculously found time on the weekend. I feel like she takes quite a while to reply, which makes it seem like she doesn’t care. When I went to visit her she was very sweet, but she then quoted me a different price for travelling than she had on the phone. She also never mentioned that I would need to put down a cash deposit that day, and all the banks were closed and I couldn’t use an ATM for that amount. I just felt like the experience was very unprofessional and I left. I’m having such a hard time finding a makeup artist I like, I agree with you that makeup is very subjective.

    • Aliza says:

      Unfortunately I had a rather different experience with Summera studios. I went for a trial and liked her work, however our text message exchanges were less then pleasant. It almost seemed as if she had no interest in doing my makeup. I messaged her the next day telling her I loved her work and wanted to book her. The next day she messaged asking if I was going to book her. I told her I would pay her the deposit by Monday, she replied with 200$ (that’s it). Come Monday…I messaged asking for her email (to transfer the money) and received no reply. I waited patiently before messaging her again the next week… still no reply. I continued messaging and got nothing. Yet, she has been posting on her instgram making it clear she did not have the decency to tell me that she decided she was not in the ‘mood’ to do my makeup and probably just wanted the trial deposit which was 75$. So now I am stuck paying more money for trials- trying to find a MUA for my wedding. I don’t think that is anyway to treat clients. I know that experiences are subjective and you may have had a great experience with her; but unfortunately mine was not.

      • safazaki2013 says:

        Hi Aliza, I’m so sorry to hear that you had this bad experience. Unfortunately, I don’t have any sway, I’m only able to relay my own experience with my wedding planning! I hope you find someone you love.

  11. isha says:

    Hi,
    I would love to book Summera for my makeup, however, she doesnt not respond- any suggestions on best way to contact her? I tried text, call and email!
    Any other suggestions? How is Maggie Wu?

    Thanks

    • safazaki2013 says:

      Hi Isha, The way that I got in touch with Summera was through FB and then phone and I found her to be very responsive. Maggie Wu, in my opinion, has a very similar style to Shirley Wu.

  12. Aliza says:

    Hey Safa,

    I want to start by saying I LOVE your blog and it prompted me to try out Summera for my wedding makeup.

    Unfortunately I had a rather different experience with Summera studios. I went for a trial and liked her work, however our text message exchanges were less then pleasant. It almost seemed as if she had no interest in doing my makeup. I messaged her the next day telling her I loved her work and wanted to book her. The next day she messaged asking if I was going to book her. I told her I would pay her the deposit by Monday, she replied with 200$ (that’s it). Come Monday…I messaged asking for her email (to transfer the money) and received no reply. I waited patiently before messaging her again the next week… still no reply. I continued messaging and got nothing. Yet, she has been posting on her instgram making it clear she did not have the decency to tell me that she decided she was not in the ‘mood’ to do my makeup and probably just wanted the trial deposit which was 75$. So now I am stuck paying more money for trials- trying to find a MUA for my wedding. I don’t think that is anyway to treat clients. I know that experiences are subjective and you may have had a great experience with her; but unfortunately mine was not.

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