Glamour and practicality. City and country. External beauty and internal charm.
By Keri Foy

Makeup artist, fashion blogger, stylist and model, Catherine Jones Kung’s style contradicts itself. Maybe this tension is what makes her style so alluring.

“I’m equal parts country girl and city girl,” says Catherine, who grew up on a farm in Henry County. “There’s a practical side of me that will never leave.”

For work:
Forget the notion of a makeup artist quietly applying lipstick in an air-conditioned setting. Catherine’s work is active. She must dress for her job and be able to climb ladders, kneel, and endure hot and cold weather.

Catherine keeps plenty of statement necklaces and clutches on hand. “When you find yourself short on time, it’s the perfect way to quickly take your daytime look into the evening with very little effort.” Photos by Sunni Wigginton 

For work, Catherine usually dresses in black, flowy tops and stretch denim jeans to allow movement. Her favorite denim is Ryan Michaels. “Ryan Michaels is a Southwestern brand, and its cotton is a cotton-silk blend,” she says. “I love the long-sleeved denim dresses, a staple during fall.”

Catherine uses accessories, such as statement necklaces, to emphasize style. “You can branch outside of your usual jewelry box with statement pieces,” she says. “They really change everything.”

Hair and beauty:
As a makeup artist, Catherine’s ideas about makeup have more credibility than most. And here they are: red lipstick, clean eyebrows, and mascara. She prefers Beauty Counter products but is known to cheat on the brand for a good red lip. Her two current favorites: Chanel Passion lipstick and Maybelline Colorsational lip color in Red Revival. “The Maybelline lipstick looks good on everyone,” she says.

“A great way to transition your summer rompers into the cooler months is to add a boyfriend sweater or
cardigan and belt it at the waist. 

Catherine tries to limit the amount of times she washes her beautifully colored red hair (she’s naturally a blonde). She maintains a weekly routine. It’s either down, curled away from her face, sitting in a topknot, styled into a sleek ponytail, or braided to achieve a crown effect. (Check out her blog to find her tricks for this deceptively easy hairstyle.) She moves through the styles depending on how many days it’s been since she last washed her hair.

Catherine describes herself as a high-low girl. She’s willing to pay premium prices for classic style but requires trendier purchases to be budget-friendly. For example, she has Valentino Rock Stud pumps, but you can also find her in the aisles of Target looking for a good deal.

When shopping, Catherine has a self-imposed rule. She asks herself, “Do I love it enough to get rid of something else?” If the answer is no, she passes on the item. If the answer is yes, she’ll make the purchase and promptly head home to get rid of another item.

The last time she was in Miami, she found a Milly clutch that has an iridescent sheen and is totally impractical, she says. But she loved it, and she bought it. “It kind of looks like beetle’s wings,” she says. When she returned to Louisville, she hesitantly got rid of a vintage, black snakeskin purse.

For lounging around and writing her blogs, Catherine wears rompers and cardigans to keep things cozy and comfy.

Style mantra:
Many a time has a woman sat in Catherine’s makeup chair and announced her rules. No red lipstick. No smoky eye. Catherine only sees that as a challenge. “As women, we’re receptive to criticism,” Catherine says. “I want to break a rule they’ve set for themselves. I can make them see how they’re beautiful. It’s empowering. Nobody should live in a box.”