Valerie SyDor of Chicago, IL – Make-up, Skin Care Interview
Q: Tell a little about yourself personally and if you attended school or you are a self taught makeup artist?
A: I actually graduated from the Aveda Institute Chicago as an Esthetician, and we had some brief instruction on make up application and focus on sanitation, but for what it’s worth I walked into school as a self taught make-up artist. I am a licensed Skin Therapist.
Q: Do you think going to school for make-up artistry is important to excel in the business later on?
A: No, I was going to spend $10k on make up school after I got my Esthetics license, but several instructors and fellow artists told me what I knew already, practice/life will be your best teacher.
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 have always loved make-up and I am also a painter as well, so being an artist or doing things that are challenging comes natural to me. But I love runway looks…the more artistic the better..I could say this was inspirational to me.
Q: What is your favorite or most exciting aspect about your job?
A: Making people happy in their skin. Seeing their smile and excitement when they see how fun and easy make up can be.
Q: What surprises you most about working as a makeup artist?
A: People are really willing to listen to you if you take the time to hear them out.
Q: Describe your “Classic Approach to Beauty.” how do you define beauty?
A: Beauty is a flawless, finished person. Well cared for skin and hair, pride in how they look, no matter race, size, etc..
Q: What individual products and brands you’re “addicted” to at the moment and you use on a daily basis?
A: Aveda, Dermalogica for skin care – Smashbox, Urban Decay for make up.
Q: What are some of the most basic but effective skin care tips in general that you have, that are really important?
A: Do not use products with alcohol on your face, no matter how oily your skin is. And please don’t use St Ives or similar body scrubs on your face…they are too harsh. Get out of the habit of thinking squeaky clean & tight feeling skin is ok after cleansing…it’s not. Don’t be so rough on your face with harsh bar soap or cheap drugstore facial cleaners/products. Hydrated and balanced skin is healthy skin. And this has a cost because better ingredients with more science behind them have better results on your skin.
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: So far – no – thank goodness.
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: Wrong foundation color, incorrect application due to lack of knowledge on how to apply. Worse thing – washing with bar soap.
Q: What do you think are best/worst trends in the makeup / skin care industry right now?
A: Promoting over exfoliation is worst trend. Best – all the colors for eyes available.
Q: Do teenage girls needs to splurge on high-priced makeup products, or are drugstore items are just as satisfactory?
A: Make up does not have to be high priced all the time – I personally do not use $20 eye shadows and can create the same effect with a drugstore eye shadow versus a MAC shadow. I say splurge on the skin care because if your skin is in terrible shape..no amount of make up will help.
Q: What feature(s) do you love to accentuate and why?
A: Eyes – I love all the colors and effects you can do.
Q: What are your steps for the perfect, flawless, natural look?
A: First, well hydrated skin – a silicone based primer, correct concealer, foundation matching skin tone applied correctly, loose powder to set and neutral eye colors and a pinch of blush and lip color.
Q: What is a really quick way to change a day look to a special occasion or nighttime face?
A: A smokey eye in any hue for night time.
Q: What are the differences between applying makeup on models and on real women?
A: Sorry, but models can be very annoying sometimes..where as real woman are patient and appreciative of your artistry.
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 – I like the accuracy I can get and the colors are more varied.
Q: Lip gloss or Lipstick. Which product is best? Why?
A: I like both….and wouldn’t say one is better then the other..depends on the clients preferences too. Some hate lip gloss.
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: Smashbox HD foundation/concealer – green or lavender primer to counter redness or dark circles, or Dermalogica foundation which provides good coverage but is light and good for your skin.
Q: How about airbrush spray makeup trend? Are these products better or easier to use than standard sponge or finger application? If yes when would you recommend using them?
A: Airbrush is for hardcore makeup junkies in my opinion, altho I think it’s awesome. I just don’t see women running out to spend $300+ right now on the machine and even understanding how to use it correctly. I personally apply my foundation with fingers because sponges soak up too much liquid foundation..i do use them to blend though. I do plan to buy an airbrush, but I am a junkie so.
Q: What do your clients think of you? What are some individual testimonials?
A: Every day I hear clients and non clients tell me how beautiful my skin is, how flawless it is, that I don’t look like I have foundation on and no one never guesses anywhere near my real age. I’m not being brash about this, infact I am genuinely humble when these compliments are made. And it makes me want to help them to achieve a good skin care regime, provide skin care education and make up advice to help them achieve the best face possible and have them be happy in their own skin too.
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: Life motto is Just Get Over It, Tomorrow is another day to Shine.
Q: What tips and advice do you have for aspiring makeup artists just starting out?
A: Just do it!
Connect with Valerie via her Facebook profile.