Melissa McMillan

Melissa McMillan is a professional makeup artist in San Francisco. She has worked with a variety of makeup and skincare brands including NARS and Benefit — where she was chosen as their national brand ambassador and a national makeup trainer due to her artistry, product expertise, and warm personality. Melissa can put absolutely anyone at ease in the makeup chair.


We asked Melissa McMillan, our favorite San Francisco makeup artist, “You’ve spent over 5,000 hours putting makeup on other women’s faces — what’s the question you’ve been asked most frequently?”

She answered, in her warm and confident way, “If I had a dollar for every time a client asked me to teach them a 10 minute makeup routine they can do every day, I’d be able to buy an entire Sephora.”

That’s a lot of dollars. So here you go: Melissa’s 10 minute non-toxic makeup routine — or, as she calls it, “the fastest road to flawless.”


Step 1. After you’ve washed your face and applied your daytime moisturizer and eye cream, use a brush or beauty blender to apply a non-toxic tinted moisturizer with broad spectrum SPF.  I love Suntegrity's 5-in-1 Natural Moisturizing Face Sunscreen SPF 30. It has light-medium buildable coverage, only responsible ingredients  — which should be your top priority — and a high SPF.

(Why should you use a brush or a beauty blender instead of your fingers for this step? Your fingers have quite a bit of texture to them, and that texture will either a) make your coverage look streaky, or b) cause you to rub the product in until the coverage is so thinned out that you’re not getting the best results. If you want thinner coverage, mix your tinted moisturizer 50/50 with your regular daytime moisturizer and apply that with a brush or beauty blender — but using your fingers to sheer it out is wasting product and money.)

Step 2. If you feel like you need a concealer under your eyes or on a spot, I like to pat a little bit of The Organic Pharmacy’s Organic Glam Concealer in with your finger, as needed, on top of the tinted moisturizer.

Step 3. When you’re in a rush, eye shadow is something you can skip – but you definitely need to throw a little bit of something on your eyelids to brighten the area up.  Spend 10 seconds sweeping a little bit of The Organic Pharmacy’s Organic Glam Mineral Eyeshadow Shimmer, or some of your concealer, atop the lids. Move from the lash line up, blending all the way up — almost to the brows.

Step 4. Throw on some Organic Pharmacy Mascara, and your eyes will look awake and polished without a lot of work.

Step 5. I also recommend a little bit of brow pencil or powder applied with a thin, angled brush. (In a bind, an eye shadow that matches the lowlights in your hair will work).

Step 6. A little bit of blush or bronzer on the cheekbones and a translucent setting powder (I think The Organic Pharmacy's Loose Powder, applied all over the face, is so beautiful) will finish off your look and have you ready to run out the door. I suggest keeping your lip balm or lipstick in your purse and applying it once you’re en route to save time.


Isn’t she brilliant? She’s really fun to hang out with, too. If you’d like to meet Melissa in person to get your own customized look for day or night — using only non-toxic, high-performance color cosmetics — she’ll be at the Ayla studio every Thursday evening. We're thrilled to have her in the house! Click here to schedule an appointment.