I live in the DMV area i.e DC, Maryland, and Virginia. While I am aware that makeup artists come a dime a dozen around the world, I am pretty positive they come a penny a dozen around here! lol
When I first started working as a “professional Mua”, I worked with a team of about 20 people. There were a few men, but mostly women. Most of the staff had at least a bachelors degree, and despite the constant pressure of sales, we all got along as one big family. If one of us made our goal for the week, we gave our sales to the next artist. If one of us got engaged, we threw them a bachelorette party! We went to dinner across the street from where we worked almost every Sunday together, and we provided constructive criticism as well as artistry tricks and tips to make our team of artists better than any other. As a result of all of that, several of those artists that I had the pleasure to work with and learn from have gone on to become leaders in our industry doing everything from Vogue, Elle, and Allure magazine covers to your favorite reality television and music award shows. Looking back on my experience with that particular staff and that brand/store, it all seems like a fairytale.
Fast forward ten years to the Nicki and Remy beef, and unfortunately for me it is all too familiar. The beauty industry is afflicted with the same problems that female rappers have! Jealousy, envy, and gossip seem to reign supreme, and for the most part, most of us don’t want to see the next artist surpass us in talent, job opportunities, or earning potential. We tend to divide ourselves into cliques based on brand,race, gender, etc… and it really has turned into one big nasty non progressive mess!
At times I have definitely played my part in the nastiness, and have recently been a victim of it. Guess what? Neither participating nor being a victim felt good. You know what else doesn’t feel good? Watching all of these male makeup artists band together and kill the game being brand ambassadors, celebrity make up artists, trainers, national artists, etc… Don’t get me wrong, there are tons of women killing the game as well, but many makeup artists that I know personally, even if their talent is amazing are not where they/we want to be.
A team is always better than an individual, and I encourage all of us Mua’s to do the individual work (praying, doing yoga, working out, finding your own happiness and peace, controlling your tongue, saying no to gossip and lying, building your self confidence and an impeccable work ethic, practicing your craft, engaging in productive conversations, and minding your own business) necessary so that one day we can work together, share our talents and skills, and progress the way we want. I for one am tired of all the unnecessary bs that keeps me and many folks I know from moving forward and have started my personal Journey to get what I know I deserve, and I cannot help but to think how awesome it would be to have some like minded women join me! To us I say a day after International Women’s Day, let’s do the unthinkable, band together, and win!!