Nicole Briertyis the creator and author of HelloMissNiki.com, a blog that provides product reviews, explores makeup tips and tricks, and much more. Although she has no prior cosmetology experience or education, she has learned from a variety of beauty gurus and makeup artists throughout the internet. The New Jersey based blogger has recently embarked on a career in freelance work and hopes to be a successful beauty blogger, as well as enhancing her presence on the web. Follow Nicole on Twitter @HelloMissNiki or visit her Facebook Fan Page.
There are many things in my life that I cannot remember, yet one thing I can never forget is my passion for makeup. Sometimes when I talk to people about it, I don’t think they truly understand. Sometimes I look into their eyes and I can see them thinking “just another girl who likes playing with makeup.” Well it’s more than that.
I remember being a child in Bayonne, New Jersey and eyeballing my mother’s lipstick on her dresser. From that moment I was determined to get my hands on some cosmetics. At that point in time, I obviously had no idea about the concept of makeup, except I was drawn to the colors. I must say that part of my youth fascination still lives within me. For the remainder of my childhood, I had to settle for Tinker Bell makeup, which at the time was just peachy to me!
Seventh grade is when it all began and it has been downhill from there… I got hooked! One weekend, my mother took me to CVS and bought me my first cosmetic products, from foundation and powder to eye shadows and that hideous white eyeliner that I used to wear extremely thick on my eyelids (a fad I would rather forget). I remember going to school that weekend and feeling hot. I thought all the girls envied my awesome makeup and all the boys were checking me out. Now I realize, “Eh…not so much!” I look back at photos and I really had no idea what I was doing when it came to makeup application and I certainly didn’t look as good as I thought! Those pictures are part of what inspired me today… to practice.
I loved makeup, but I became lazy for years and stuck with the same old looks, wearing the same lipstick and gloss everyday and never being adventurous. That includes not going to cosmetology school. I became so wrapped up in school, life and relationships that I figured I would never go. I would say, “Where is it going to take me?” The economy was bad and I figured I needed to be somewhere that ensured job security. Nevertheless, I passed on schooling and went to college for Arts & Graphic Design.
Years have gone by, and although I was happy, something was still missing from my life. While using StumbleUpon one night, I came across a beauty guru who changed everything for me. Julia from Miss Chievous, a Switzerland-based makeup artist who had the most incredible makeup tutorials. I watched her videos for hours on end; buying the products she used to build up my collection and eventually started doing a different look that she instructed every single morning! Granted, at times, I ran late for work, but I enjoyed waking up and experimenting with something new, no matter how wild it was. After getting to know Julia more through her videos and her blog, I learned that she never had any prior cosmetic training and that she was self-taught. Now, do not get me wrong, I am not saying you shouldn’t go to school. In fact, if I could to go tomorrow, I would jump on the opportunity! However, her lack of cosmetology education and extreme success is what inspired me to do more, to take the next step, to bring my passion to life. In late January of 2012, I became a beauty blogger and with a lot of time and practice, began taking on some freelance makeup jobs.
Everything happened so fast, and although I am not quite where I want to be yet, I feel I have become quite successful. I have met many amazing people, both with and without prior experience. We all share the same passion for cosmetics and see more than just “playing with makeup.” We see art. We see our faces as canvases and express ourselves with different techniques and colors that define who we are.
So what do I see for my future as a makeup artist? I want to be heard. I want women and men who are interested in makeup to come to me and visit my blog for advice and direction and not mind that I am educationally inexperienced. Do I still want to go to cosmetology school? Absolutely; but because I have taken my cosmetics obsession to the next step, I am not kicking myself as much for not going. I want to build up my portfolio, expand my collection and experiment more with different looks and techniques.
Without sounding too cheesy, if you are a young person who is questioning taking their passion to the next step, just go for it! For some, that might mean attending makeup artist training or cosmetology school. You only live once and you never know where it will take you! You may even win an Oscar someday or you could be the one doing celebrities makeup for Vogue magazine. You just never know!