I'm excited to introduce to you, my friend and go-to for all things beauty and fashion. I met Nikki years ago when my cousin, Andy first brought her pretty face to meet our massive family. The years in between we have shared our favorite finds, a love of smart products, fashion and photography. I personally appreciate Nikki's insightful opinions knowing she only shares the ones she has tried and most importantly WORK! I hope you find these shopping lists we've created as helpful as I have. - Laura
When did you first take an interest in beauty?
"I remember as a little girl I use to love laying on my parents bed watching my mom get ready in the morning. It was also my mom who took me to Clinique when I was 11 to start my first skin care regimen! I’ve been hooked ever since!"
You've lived a variety of places now, what have you learned about beauty and skin care from each different climate?
"Different climates definitely affect our skin! I grew up in Peoria, IL; lived in Chicago for a few years while attending the Illinois Institute of Art - Chicago and upon graduating, spent some time in Colorado."
"Peoria and Chicago have similar climates with extreme variations in temperature throughout the year. The intense winters with bitterly cold winds (especially in Chicago) strip moisture from exposed skin causing dry patches and chapped lips. It’s so important to find the right products to provide moisture!"
"Midwest hot and humid summers result in sweaty skin! This can be a recipe for disaster when wearing makeup. A great cosmetic product I’ve found is Kett Cosmetics Translucent Powder. This powder applied by blotting with a large powder brush is awesome in helping combat sweat."
"In Colorado the combination of high altitude, arid climate, high winds and intense sun yields a dryness that also affects the skin. This is great as far as the weather is concerned. Summers are warm but not humid! The dryness that results in enjoyable summers however, can also be rough on skin. The higher altitude with intense sun is a recipe for a quick sunburn. Sunscreen is very important! I’m a firm believer in the fact that sunscreen should be applied everyday, no matter what climate you live in. It’s a great idea to invest in an a.m. moisturizer that has a broad spectrum SPF already in it. Drinking lots of water also helps combat dryness and keep the body hydrated. Lastly, I again stress how important it is to find the right products to provide not only moisture but to promote overall health and appearance of skin."
What's your daily skin care routine look like?
Red lip or smokey eye?
"I love both looks!! My advice is keep the lips lighter, more neutral when doing a smokey eye and a neutral eye with a bold liner when wearing a red lip. Neutral eyes and a red lip is also a great look to go from day to night."
Where do you find inspiration?
"I find inspiration in a variety of ways - magazines, books, movies and social media. I also love and find inspiration in history, travel and learning about other cultures and ways of life!"
What are a few of your favorite beauty products you couldn't live without?
"Oh my! There are so many products I love! Here are the first few that come to mind."
Rodan + Fields Multi-Function Eye Cream
Rodan + Fields Lip Renewing Serum
Rodan + Fields Night Renewing Serum w/ AMP MD Roller
PCA Skin Acne Cream (I don’t struggle with acne but I use this daily on my breakout areas)
Envy Medical Lumixyl Brightening Creme
Nars The Multiple (available in lots of colors) - multi-purpose stick for eyes, cheeks, and lips
Kett Cosmetics Translucent Powder
Bobbi Brown Bronzing Powder
MAC blush in Fleur Power
Lorac Take A Brow
Diorshow Extase Mascara
Dior Addict It-Lash Mascara
Dior Addict Lipstick
Dior Addict Ultra Lip Gloss
Do you have any secret tips for your face to be photo ready?
"Having a good skin regimen that you’re seeing results from is the best way to always be photo ready! :) I absolutely love makeup but who doesn’t want a natural glow!?"
"Everyday makeup is meant to enhance our natural beauty." - Nichole Hoerr
My favorite makeup tips to be photo ready!
- Powder the forehead and nose pre-photo to reduce shine.
- Shade under the cheekbones and jawline with a matte bronzer. This technique helps create the appearance of chiseled features.
- Apply a rosy blush on the apples of cheeks to add some dimension.
- Touch up under eyes and blemishes by dabbing a light-diffusing concealer in a hue that matches your skin tone.
- Apply a little peach or pink lip gloss. The neutral shade and slight sheen makes teeth appear brighter.
Describe the process of planning for your own photo shoot, where do you start?
"When styling a photo shoot I start with the clients and their vision for the shoot! If it's a family or bride, we discuss their interests, family dynamics, personalities and hobbies. From there we work on the location and their wardrobe. Makeup is actually one of the last things discussed. For family shoots and brides we are usually just wanting to enhance the beauty of the individual client."
"If I’m styling for a business or magazine the sky is the limit! The processes is usually the same though; I start with what the client’s goal is for the shoot - inspiration, creative, business generating…etc. It’s often a mix of a couple different ideas and/or goals! From there we discuss the overall vision, location, wardrobe and makeup/hair."
"My favorite shoots, whether for a family, bride or business are the creative ones. I love having clients who are willing to think outside the box! It allows me to really have fun with their wardrobe and makeup."
Where is the most inspiring place you've traveled to?
"I would say Europe - specifically Paris and London!! I felt inspired in so many ways - from the culture, to the food, architecture, history and fashion - I fell in love with both cities!"
In your opinion, what are the benefits of airbrush make up over traditional applications? Do you think one should be considered over the other for photographs?
"There are a few benefits to airbrush makeup. The airbrushing technique uses a tiny spray gun that evenly distributes a fine mist of liquid foundation particles. This application is the best at minimized skin imperfections resulting in a natural, nearly flawless complexion. Its flexible on the surface, fills in fine lines and looks and feels like skin. Airbrush makeup is longer lasting (up to 24 hours) and can be tailored to each individual and the overall look they are wanting to achieve. KETT Cosmetics is the brand of airbrush gun and liquid foundation I use. I love this company because their airbrush liquid foundations are hydro-proof, fragrance free and paraben free. It works wonders on all skin types and doesn’t irritate sensitive skin. With all this being said, I would definitely recommend airbrush makeup over traditional application when being photographed. I have lots of happy clients who are glad they did!"
Photo credits to Deirdre Lynn
Nichole graduated in 2009 from the Illinois Institute of Art - Chicago with a BS in Fashion Marketing and Management. In 2011 Nichole also received advanced training in make-up design from Muse Beauty in Chicago. She has spent most of her time working in both the makeup and fashion industries. Nichole has worked as a personal stylist/shopper and a photo shoot stylist. She currently works as an independent makeup artist, is a skincare consultant for Rodan + Fields, and the buyer for a boutique in Morton, IL.
Nichole is happily married to Andrew Hoerr. They currently live in Peoria, IL; love traveling, movies, dining out, and spending time with friends and family.
Whether discovering a client’s individual style, consulting on skincare or applying makeup, Nichole sets out to uncover each person’s natural beauty and ideal look. Her eye for style comes from her lifelong love of beauty and fashion and her desire to give women a sense of confidence and empowerment.