Gaye Bell of Memphis, TN – Make-up Artist, Hair Stylist Interview
Q: Describe your “Classic Approach to Beauty.” how do you define beauty?
A: My “classic” approach to beauty is to give the face a clean look. I would define beauty as what “it” is that makes you feel beautiful.
Confidence is beauty, however, I think everyone needs SOMETHING to enhance their natural beauty–not necessarily makeup, but SOMETHING (i.e. brow shaping, lashes, eyeliner, gorgeous skin, etc.). You get what I’m saying?
Q: Tell a little about yourself personally and if you attended school or you are a self taught makeup artist?
A: I’m a licensed cosmetologist who loves doing makeup. I started out as a Mary Kay Consultant, but wanted to step it up a notch. I then became a Dudley Cosmetics Entrepreneur, which is where I got a lot of my training with the world renown Betty McKonnen.
A lot of what I know, I also got from video tapes, makeup workshops at trade shows (Sam Fine, Danessa Myricks, Byron Barnes, etc.), books on the subject, tips from other international artists, and applying what I learned. So, I would say I am both self-taught and trained.
Q: Do you think going to school for make-up artistry is important to excel in the business later on?
A: No. I don’t think going to school is important to excel, because if you are passionate about it, there are too many resources available to enhance oneself on the art–that is, if you already have the skill. However, it may help from a business marketing perspective.
Q: Did you always wanted to be an artist, or did you stumble upon your talent by chance? Who or what inspired you to become a makeup artist?
A: I always wanted to be a business professional. I admired the Mary Kay persona of looking professional and beautiful, so I guess you can say that’s what inspired me. Later, my creativity was unleashed once I got my hands in the makeup and realized the art side of it.
Q: What is your favorite or most exciting aspect about your job?
A: Transforming faces.
Q: What surprises you most about working as a makeup artist?
A: What I’m able to do with my artistic skills.
Q: What individual products and brands you’re “addicted” to at the moment and you use on a daily basis?
A: A peach or pink gloss.
Q: What are some of the most basic but effective skin care tips in general that you have, that are really important?
A: Moisturize!! Especially the lips–they’re so delicate.
Q: Have you had an extreme, crazy or bad experience with a skin care product or during a makeup session? If so, what happened?
A: No, except maybe a client that’s allergic to everything you try to put on their face. Okay?
Q: What do you find to be the most common mistakes women make with makeup? What’s the worst thing a woman can do to her skin?
A: Lining their lips with the wrong color, or NOT lining them at all. The worst thing a woman can do to her skin is not protect it from the elements.
Q: What do you think are best/worst trends in the makeup / skin care industry right now?
A: I can definitely say the worst trend I’ve seen right now is women applying the white eyeshadow pencil directly on the lower lid with such harshness, AND they think it’s cute. It’s hideous!
Q: Do teenage girls needs to splurge on high-priced makeup products, or are drugstore items are just as satisfactory?
A: Drugstore brands are good enough, as long as the proper color foundation is found.
Q: What feature(s) do you love to accentuate and why?
A: The eyebrows and eyes. They frame the whole face.
Q: What are your steps for the perfect, flawless, natural look?
A: It depends–sometimes on the occasion or creatively, what’s going on in my mind. For instance, if someone has freckles, or already flawless skin, I may play around that. Other times, this is my guide-perfect brows, mascara, soft eyeliner, lightly applied foundation and powder that’s well blended, dusted pink or peach cheeks, sheer gloss on lips, and lightly smudged shadow just above upper lashes.
Q: What is a really quick way to change a day look to a special occasion or nighttime face?
A: Darken the eyes and smudge a black liner a little heavier under eyes.
Q: What are the differences between applying makeup on models and on real women?
A: It’s easier on models–if chosen correctly, and I’m totally free to do what I do.
Q: In terms of eyeliner, if you had to choose between a pencil, liquid, or creme/gel based, which one would you choose? Why?
A: Pencil. It allows me more control.
Q: Lip gloss or Lipstick. Which product is best? Why?
A: I use both. Glosses gives me the high shine I need, whereas lipsticks can have more staying power.
Q: What should a client consider before deciding to try permanent makeup? What is the difference between permanent and semi-permanent makeup?
A: Whether or not they will outgrow it. Semi-permanent will have to be re-done at some point.
Q: What brand/type of concealer is your favorite for covering up the after effects of a late night out i.e. under-eye circles, blemishes?
A: Don’t have a favorite. Just use one, it can’t hurt.
Q: How about airbrush spray makeup trend? Are these products better or easier to use than standard sponge or finger application? If yes when wouldyou recommend using them?
A: I think it’s great for a special occasion. I don’t think it’s necessarily easier.
Q: What do your clients think of you? What are some individual testimonials?
A: I think my clients think very highly of me, from my character and personality to my artistic skills. They tell me so. I’ve been called “hairdini” by one client (because I’m a stylist too). Some expressions, are, “Wow!” “Oh my God! I’m so pretty”, “I feel beautiful”, “Is that me?”.
Q: Would you share some of your future goals, your life motto, any words of wisdom that get you by in life and professional career?
A: My goal is to continue to build my image to take what I do to a higher plateau. I believe that if I keep striving to be better, and maintain a professional and genuine spirit towards people and what I do, that it will eventually pay off. I continue to put my faith in God and trust Him as my source and resource, and He will give me what I need when I need it.
Q: What tips and advice do you have for aspiring makeup artists just starting out?
A: Go to seminars and trade shows to get a better understanding of the industry and the art. Pick subjects and practice. Always take photos of your work, it’ll give the true picture of your skill. Be open to corrective criticism, and ask questions when in the presence of professional artists.
Visit Gaye’s MySpace profile.