You went to teen discos with an orange face, heavy eye-liner and chunky eyelashes.
Well, congrats. You’ve come a long way. You’ve learnt the art of blending and upgraded your products. And that’s what make-up is; an art. From the inspirational MUAs we follow on Instagram to people carving out a career with their contour tools, makeup artistry takes a lot of skill and talent.
I spoke to aspiring MUA Caroline Conroy about her experiences with makeup.
“I was quite an insecure young girl, so it intrigued me that I could transform myself with makeup. I began practicing and eventually, did my friends makeup and others, and realised that this career was for me,” Caroline says. “I just love all the different routes in the industry, from freelancing to media/TV makeup- I’m never going to be bored and that for me was really important… I love a good challenge,” she continues.
Caroline started a full time ITEC makeup artistry course in September with Vanity X in Dublin. They started off with basic makeup and will continue to do special effects such as cuts, bruises and theatrical makeup. Her qualification will be a level 5 makeup artistry diploma. She will be qualified to work for TV and media, for a makeup counter or for any other events involving makeup and has been freelancing for about 11 months.
When asked what makes her different from all the other makeup artists out there, she replied with, “I think that I have a drive to be the best I can be. I don’t think I’ll ever believe I am perfect and no longer need to practice or change technique. Trends are always changing, and I will always be learning.”
She finds it frustrating that, so many people think it’s ‘only makeup’. “A lot of people think there’s a huge profit but when you calculate the amount of makeup used and re-stocking all of it, it really isn’t an industry you should go into because of the money.”
Her top 3 inspirations would be Aideen Kate Makeup, “she is my all time favourite. I love her dramatic style. She is so kind and lovely. I have messaged her before with a question and she interacts so well with her followers.”
Shannon Harris (shanxo), “I have been watching her on YouTube since I was so young, and she seems so genuine for such a famous makeup guru. That is a very important characteristic for me and has always inspired me to stay true to myself.
And finally, Suzanne Jackson (sosueme), “she’s such an incredible entrepreneur and an inspiration to me business wise. Her makeup brand is unbelievable.”
Caroline says that the people in her life are extremely supportive, especially her friends and family. “They’re glad that I chose my passion instead of a career on an educational path.” She speaks of her “amazing followers” on social media who constantly support her by sharing her name around, following her and even sending her kind messages.
“If I haven’t posted in a while I’ve received messages asking if I’m okay. My social media are like one big happy family- I love it! I can’t even begin to explain how much confidence I have gotten thanks to my followers.”
In saying that, there is a downside to social media- the hate. “I have gotten some nasty messages and I would be so hurt if I knew the person but that fact that a stranger takes time out of their life to write such resentful messages says a lot about that particular person and the state of mind they are in. The only thing anyone should do if they receive such nonsense is to block the account.”
“Always remember, whoever is trying to drag you down is already below you.”
For anyone wanting to pursue something but is afraid, she would say that there is no need to be afraid of your passion. “It might be a risk, but it is a very small price to pay in comparison to working the rest of your life in a job you hate because that’s awful for your mental wellbeing.”
She is based in Connemara, Galway in her own home and if you wish to follow Caroline on social media, here are her links:
Facebook: Caroline Conroy Makeup