Friday, 12 June 2015

Liptastic Summer

Wedding and prom season is in full mode, and boy does prom get even bigger and better each year! I never had a prom at 16, the best thing we had to look forward to was Leaver's Day. With all the excitement buzzing around, the year 11's started writing on each others' shirts a day too early, resulting in our Leaver's Day being cancelled. Sad times for a 16 year old. I digress...

Prom make-up's get more glam each year, 5 years ago it was subtle, dewy and fresh skin. 2015 is all about the smokey eyes and lashes. My advice to any girls going to their prom is don't do red lips!! As much as red lips is classic and sets a bold statement, opting for corals and peaches will allow you to play up the eyes more. Even a lot of my brides (Asian and non-Asian) are swapping bright bold colours for more subtle lips. If you're struggling to find a few colours for this summer here's a few I've come across recently that I love.

One of my favourite corals are Max Factor's Pink Brandy lipstick (£7.99 from Superdrug) it is lush! It's my ultimate spring/summer colour, and a plus point is that it's super moisturising. It looks amazing even without any lip liner, I'm usually wearing it in most of my Instagram posts! (@GangaMakeup #GangaMakeup)

Max Factor's Pink Brandy lipstick used by itself (I have layered the colour on)

Alternatively for a more longer lasting colour try out a lip stain such as Benefit's Cha Cha Tint or Posie Tint (£24.50 from It is a bit steep to buy just as a lip stain but it can be used on the cheeks for a natural flush of colour that will not wear off even if you're dancing away. So a 2-in-1 product that lasts quite a while, worth the investment. I'm totally obsessed with Benefit at the moment. My sister bought me the Candy-Coated Countdown advent calendar at Christmas and it opened my eyes to the amazingness of Benefit products.

I used Benefit's Cha Cha Tint on the cheeks and a hint of it on the lips on my model when shooting for my campaign with Maya Magazine.

NYX Cosmetics have a beautiful range called the Soft Matte Lip Creams (£7.00 from A matte lipgloss that feels like velvet on your lips. It sounds as sexual as it feels. My personal favourite from the range is Stockholm, which is a gorgeous nude, ideal for Asians who are of a mid-tone complexion. Alternatively the colour Buenos Aires is more coral and suitable for most complexions.

Illamasqua's Naked lipstick (£19.50 from Illamasqua) is one of my favourite nude colours of all time, ok granted it's not peach or coral, however line your lips with MAC's Soar lip liner or MAC's Lasting Sensation lip liner (MAC Cosmetics lipliners £12.50) and voila, a beautiful neutral peach /coral.
Coloured my lips in with Soar liner and then applied Illamasqua's Naked Lipstick on top.

If you're not a big make-up wearer and don't want to invest too much into a product you may not use much I'd highly recommend Sleek lip colours. Sleek's range is more reasonably priced that the products I've mentioned above but is still highly pigmented and offer wide range of colours.

Happy lip hunting!!
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Saturday, 14 June 2014

England Inspired Eye Makeup Tutorial

Tutorial on how to create a England flag-inspired eye makeup. Show your support for the World Cup in a different way with this look.

Products used:
  1. Apply NYX Jumbo eye pencil in 'Milk' as base colour all over the lid and blend 
  2. Apply Sugarpill cosmetics 'Tako' loose powder on the eyelid and brow bone
  3. Use a pointer brush and apply Motives cosmetics Gun Metal eyeshadow ( use sparingly!!) in the crease, and blend
  4. Use the NYX pencil in 'Milk' in the waterline of your eyes
  5. I applied Liz Martin's lashes, but if you find it easier, you can apply your lashes lash.
  6. Using a thin eyeliner brush apply the red colour from the Ben Nye colour wheel along the top half of your lid and wing it out
  7. Using the same red colour, apply under the eyes and join the top liner together to create a perfect wing, I advise opting for an eyeliner that suits your eye shape.
  8. As the red liner used is a cream product set it with Lime Crime's intense pigment in 'Siren' 
  9. Use some silver glitter eyeliner to make the whole eye makeup pop, I used one from a company called Make-up Store glitter eyeliner 
  10. Fill in brows, here I used a light brown matte eye powder, and I set the brows with Illamasqua's Brow and Lash Gel
Follow on Instagam and Twitter: @GangaMakeup


Sunday, 25 May 2014

It Doesn't Matter If You're Black Or White

One of the most common questions I get asked by a bride-to-be is, ‘what is my signature look?’ I have looked through my portfolio and tried to find the answer, however I was pleasantly surprised to reminisce over the last few years and am proud to say I don’t have a signature style or a certain type of client.

I did notice that in the last couple of years my client range has widened dramatically - from the palest of porcelain skin right through to the deepest chocolate hues. I really enjoy working on weddings of all ethnicities and I would like to take the time to say thank you to all my brides and all future brides-to-be for giving me the opportunity to learn and understand more about their culture and traditions.

My take on this is that I don't want a signature look because that means all my clients would end up looking the same to some extent. I would prefer to be recognised as the artist who gives the client what they want and what suits them.

One of my main questions I ask a client is if they would like me to match the foundation to their natural skin tone or to go slightly darker or lighter. I ask this purely because everyone has their own preferences to how they want to look.

I see countless girls wearing the wrong foundation colour. In MAC talk, you get the NC15 attempting to match her fake tan by using NC45, but just ends up looking like an oompa loompa. Then the NC45 applying a NC30 but ends up looking like the corpse bride. It's not a good look, God made you a certain way for a reason, embrace your natural self. Too many girls are changing themselves to fit an unrealistic image that is portrayed in the media.

Photographer: Michael Loccisano/Getty Images

Society and media tries to tell us what is 'beautiful' and try to implant this early on in life. Our culture can really impact the way someone feels about themselves. Take for instance the crowning of the latest Miss America, Nina Davaluri. Had she been a contestant in India the outcome probably would've been different as she may have been considered too dark and not pretty in some people’s eyes. Hello!!! She is Indian, she is meant to be brown! But again, that is culture manipulating our minds into thinking what they want us to believe. The Bollywood songs constantly harmonise on the beautiful girl who has skin like a white girl - this is not an exact translation but you get the gist of it.

It is the culture we have been brought up in that makes this judgement about skin colour and beauty. In countries such as India and Africa lighter skin is associated with wealth. The working class are out in the blazing heat all day and get darker, whereas the rich are out of the sun sitting inside, and thus this connection is made. It's all a bit ludicrous in my eyes, but if I stayed inside all day I would still be brown and I wouldn't be getting any lighter. I would, however, end up with a Vitamin D deficiency.

Unfortunately the industry and the mentality of people have been this way for a while, and whilst most just like to exist in it and let it be, I won't. Some questions that I've come across whilst being in this industry are 'Why do so few adverts in the UK not represent the Asian community?' and 'Why are European models advertising products and services that are predominantly targeted at Asian clients?' I find myself questioning these too.

As a medium skin toned girl myself, personally looking at make-up products on a model who is not representing my skin colour seems a bit irrelevant, I can't really relate to it. Thinking from a client's point of view, I would automatically jump to the conclusion that, the product advertised suits the model in the campaign because of her complexion. I have heard clients say that very line, and it's a shame that the medium to dark skinned clients are not represented to their full capability.

There is nothing ugly about dark skin. The only ugly thing is the mentality of people who believe that, and the people working in this industry who constantly put out products and services representing only lighter skinned models. Why is it that when the beauty sections in magazines (both Asian and non-Asian) feature an article of what products suit light, medium and dark skin tones, still tend to show the lighter versions of medium and dark skin on their models? Why is it that each time there is an uproar about skin lightening or photoshopping skin tones in the media it gets phased out and ignored again?

Queen B on two different covers, Joy Magazine, chose to lighten her skin colour whilst Glamour Magazine used the same image but showed a darker complexion. 

And why have we not yet seen a dark skinned model representing Asian bridal make-up? Well that last question triggered me to get shooting a set of bridal looks that truly represent darker skintones and to prove to anyone who thinks dark skin is not attractive…. well I beg to differ. Have a look at my photoshoot and let me know what you think?

Credits: Airbrush Make-up, Hair Styling & Styling by Ganga Bhambra
Outfits: Both White and Ivory Dress provided by The Bridal Rooms, in Lichfield
Photography: Jayesh Pankhania

Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Where did 2013 go?

So I still keep writing dates as '13.

I don't mean to sound like an old fogey, but I am sure the time passed slower when I was in school. Each year just dragged on. But now the weeks, months and year shoots by and somehow I am now closer to 30 than I was to 20. That is just too depressing to hear. Yes, at 26 I suppose I am wiser, I have 'found myself' and finally decided I am now old enough to speak out about things I don't agree with, career and non-career related and unfortunate for those who have to hear it.

So what happened in 2013 that my life was literally too busy to blog....?

I worked my derriere off, I can't remember the summer because I just went from job to job. It also resulted in me buying a lifetime's supply of throat sweets and as I came to understand I just don't stop talking.

My social life was just non-existant.

I was fortunate enough to work for 2 huge international companies including Santander Bank, for their series of Business Banking promo material and a published spread in People Magazine (USA) with educational activist Malala Yousafzai. I also had a ridiculous amount of bridal bookings throughout the year.

And, in December 2013 realised I made absolutely no time for myself to shoot any new material for my portfolios, so I took note and started 2014 with a bang and shot some new bridal material, which I will post about once all the images are completed, as I am yet to finish one shoot left in the series.

Let's hope I can write more this year..even then I am 3 months late in writing this but seriously who reads shiz this anyway besides my mum? Ahh well, I will do my best!

G x

Sunday, 10 March 2013

Motherly Love

Happy Mother's Day to all you phenomenal women that have been there day and night for your kids regardless of the battles your children throw at you. I have spent the whole day working, not really being able to spend time and showering my Mum with affection.

I think it's difficult to understand how a mother feels and what she goes through when you're not one. I am not a mother, but I appreciate everything my mum has done and think all mum's are amazing and wonderful beings that, no offence to men, no one else can match. 

They endure endless pain, sometimes during and after pregnancy, have an emergency operation straight after giving birth, expect to still attend to, feed and look after inlaws with little to no help when they should be resting. Spend a good 20 years of their married life trying to please everyone with no recognition but continuous bull**** from "family". Go through some serious lows that drive you to question, is it worth it? The answer a mother always tells herself is, 'Yes, the kids'. But the kids are not old enough to appreciate it yet. 

Support from the husband, not really, a lot of Asian marriages were about convenience not love. So no shoulder to lean on. The only way a mother can cope is to act completely crazy, make jokes over everything and smile at all that is thrown in her direction so no one see's the pain.

As time passes, a mother will either hide her obstacles she has overcame from her kids, or bare all to make them understand why she is the way she is. Maybe the kids will understand one day, but kids are kids. They mess up, push the boundaries, don't get why their mum wants and needs to know everything. All kids discuss with their friends, and a communal agreement is made 'Mother's are crazy!' . But as kids get older, and hopefully wiser, the craziness does start to make sense to them.

With a better understanding as to what any mother has to go through in life, the kids can now support the mum to encourage her to be strong minded, not to be phased by negativity from inlaws, her own family and even her kids themselves.

It's time to support the mothers of the world, not for the mothers to support the kids. 

I unfortunately have had no time to spend with my Super Mum due to work today, so I am about to go jump into bed and snuggle up to her soft arms. Yes, she has the softest arms in the world, she doesn't need Cocoa Butter, or to exfoliate, that women possesses the smoothest skin I have known to a human being. I kid you not!

All mother's are great, everyone thinks they have the best mum in the world. And you all do, each mother is amazing in her own way. Mine is the best because this many years on, through everything she's been through she's awesome and still here for me, my brother and sister until the end of time.

Friday, 2 November 2012

Gangam Make-up

There once was a girl called Ganga,
Who used to have friends around her.
She worked night and day,
Up until her birthday.

This time she was shocked,
How some 'good friends' had flopped.
Not a message in sight,
It stung like a bite.

Screw it, she said,
Those friendships are dead.
Now twenty-five,
She feels so alive.

Putting work first,
She's got the hunger, the thirst.
Great people she meets,
Through the sound of the beats.

Her job, it rocks,
Now, as Rishi, Metz and Trix say..
Let's have some shots!

So a few weeks ago I got a call from my main man, Rishi Maman; next single is coming out 'Do It Tonight' and a music video to be shot with himself, Stina Sanders and Asian Bhangra talents, MC Metz & MC Trix.
All Airbrushed up and ready to Do It Tonight! L-R: MC Metz, Rishi, Stina and MC Trix
We shot in Pandora's Box in Nottingham, I walked in thinking 'hmmm the amount of times I've been in Nottingham, I don't think I've come here.' Two hours later I had a flashback of buying a drink at the bar, must have been a good night if I can't remember the club!
The decor in Pandora's Box is amazing, it's a shame you can't appreciate it on a night out 
At Pandora's Box I found a wall mounted with obviously  MJ was there as well as Hendrix!
L-R: MC Metz, Stina and MC Trix on set with their Airbrush make-up 
Every time I blog about the music videos I work on I say it was one of the best shoots I've had, copy that and add it was the most I've ever laughed on a shoot. A team full of great personalities will result in the best medicine, especially when I hear 'We need a make-up touch up, Gangam Style'. Thanks to the YouTube hit, I now have Rishi actually telling people he has his make-up done by Gangam!
Touching up Rishi on set, you know #gangamstyle 
#gangamstyle pose, Airbrush make-up and hair by moi 
Airbrush make-up and hair by Ganga. I actually started writing #gangamstyle there, it's so addictive! 
Look out for this track as it's sure to be a hit, I do find myself randomly singing 'I wanna do it tonight', though I probably shouldn't go around vocalising the song too much, it may come off in a different manner.

Rishi's third single 'Do It Tonight' ft Metz and Trixproduced by the sensational DJ Surinder Rattan, who unfortunately couldn't make it to the shoot will be out mid-December 2012 and is available to download from iTunes.

L-R; MC Trix, myself and MC Metz
Sunny creeping into the picture!
Last scene of the day with Stina and Rishi. Check out the Louboutins baby! 
My ass...taken by Sunny..thanks for this!
A few last shout outs I have to do for everyone involved in the video and song for their hard work and dedication; Surinder Singh and Kam Frantic at Creative Independent, Sai Smith, Danny Uppal and Stephan Smith at Ballistics Crew, Sunny Sondh at Triple-S Productions. One to not shout out to is Domino's Pizza who forgot to give us our 10 Garlic and Herb dips we ordered!
Me + Domino's -  Extra Dips = ??  This just makes no sense, how we survived eating 4 large pizza's with only the 4 dips we got for free I have no idea.

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Voice of an Angel

At the beginning of August I had the very fortunate experience of doing Airbrush Make-up on the inspiring gospel singer, Claudette Schlitter on her first music video for 'Not Been Forsaken'. When Claudette came to my studio for a trial run through we connected straight away with our taste in music, she was influenced by the late and fantastic Whitney Houston and I by Michael Jackson, two legends.

The day of video shoot was blessed with a ray of beaming sunshine, a complete surprise seeing as this Summer has not really existed! I met her husband, Michael, which I got excited about just because, well... Michael, need I say more. I met her manager, also named Michael. And later in the day we found out that the director, Paul from Monster and Sons, was also inspired by Michael Jackson from a young age. The adrenaline I get just from meeting another Michael Jackson fan is indescribable, but I think you get the gist. I knew this was going to be a great day.

While shooting it looked effortless for Claudette, who appears as a natural on camera. She belted out the words from the bottom of her heart and it showed. But it was over so quick, bearing in mind we even stopped for a mere 10.09 seconds to watch the fastest man in the world, no not The Flash, I mean Bolt! After the music video shot was done, the set was redone for an interview with Claudette's about her autobiography, I Am Loved .

Now usually when I'm on set I get so focused into making sure everything is looking perfect, from the make-up, to the styling, and even the background set, but I was so engrossed with what was being said it tapped an emotion in me and made me reflect back into my life and the life of those around me. She touched on some controversial topics, such as bullying, her eating disorder that she overcame, and racial discrimination and abuse. To have a glimpse into her life and to see how far she has come is truly inspirational, I'm definitely picking up a copy for myself.

The single and album will be out shortly, and you can pre-order 'I Am Loved' through the Waterstones website. Here's a quick glimpse of some behind the scenes pictures and the promo video.

Airbrush Make-up: Ganga Bhambra
Hair: Tanya Elaine
Video Production: Monster and Sons

Final touches on Claudette

On set with Claudette and director, Paul from Monster and Sons