It all started when I was 4 years old.
My Mother has a photo of me sitting on her gold wire and purple faux fur vintage chair brushing my golden curly hair.
In her vintage dressing table drawer, she kept a few beauty products I became obsessed with as soon as I could appreciate them. The first, a strawberry scented rollerball lipgloss from the 1970s that smelled so delicious, it also doubled as my personal lollipop. The second, a Helena Rubenstein white compact containing a deep dusty pink cheek blush otherwise known as “rouge” at the time and the third, a cover stick in a small gold wind-up case. My love affair with cosmetics had well and truly begun and it wasn’t just a little crush.
As I got older, I began experimenting with makeup and decided after studying my Diploma in Child Studies, that painting faces and making women feel good was what I really wanted to do for a living, instead of chasing little people around and wiping their grotty little button noses. So In 2000, I bought some overpriced makeup brushes, enrolled into a makeup college and after finishing my course on painting faces, sculpting brows and perfectly painting nails, I entered the cosmetic retail industry and have been in it ever since.
In 15 years, I have worked for many makeup brands and learned about so many products, which has brought me to my current occupation of Beauty Personal Shopper. Yes. I get paid to walk people around and tell them which products they need to buy for their foundation smeared makeup bags. Can you imagine the fun? I have well and truly been beaten with the lucky stick.
I think the part I love most is introducing myself and explaining to people who I am and what I do, because people don’t expect to have a personal shopper on standby telling them what they need and there’s no doubt about it, makeup shopping is fun!
On my second day as Beauty Authority, (actual title: Beauty Style Advisor) I had a delightful lady, who came in to buy a foundation. I introduced myself and explained my purpose and after an hour and a half of asking my opinion on what my favourite products were, she ended up buying 23 of them. She trusted my advice! “Of course,” you say, “you’ve been a beauty babe for 15 years”. True, but that feeling of having your word trusted without question never stops making you feel good, and that’s why I do what I do.
It’s a privilege to be able to walk up to the counters of my choice and have all the consultants respectfully step back as I advise my clients on what’s best for them. Being on the floor for as long as I have been, means I know everyone, so having that luxury makes life a lot easier and having my opinion trusted, well that makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside.
Every day and every client is different and knowing my skills and knowledge are being utilised to assist people in looking and feeling good, is what gives my job its true glitter and sparkle.
Illustration: Surbi Chetty