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  • Writer's pictureIren Urdova

My Makeup Journey

Among the many questions I receive while clients are in my makeup chair, there are two that consistently stand out, surpassing even inquiries about product recommendations: "How long have you been doing this?" and "How did you get started?" Typically, I respond with a short answer: "Over 4 years, and I've always enjoyed makeup." Yet, the roots of my passion for makeup delve far deeper than a mere timeline or casual interest. It's a subject I rarely delve into—not because it's negative, but because it carries a significance that I often find myself needing to revisit. This is my "why."

Many may not be aware, but I grew up in an immigrant household. My parents had me at a young age, and we relocated to America when I was just two years old—yes, quite the whirlwind start. From my earliest memories, my parents were always on the move, navigating various jobs and a constantly changing environment. Amidst this craziness, one constant remained: my mother's daily makeup routine. Regardless of the circumstances, she always took the time for her makeup ritual before heading to work—a ritual I observed with awe as a child. Though in hindsight, her mastery of makeup might have been a bit exaggerated in my eyes. As I entered my teenage years, I found myself mimicking her techniques. It wasn't about emulating a profession; in fact, I hadn't even realized makeup artistry was a career option, especially coming from a European immigrant background where traditional career paths like law or medicine were often prioritized. Instead, I found joy in using makeup as a means to boost confidence, both in myself and in others. Experimenting with makeup on my friends for various events—dances, proms, parties—I discovered the transformative power it held. There was a profound satisfaction in seeing the radiant glow of self-love that lit up their faces as they looked into the mirror, seeing themselves in a new light. It wasn't about the process of applying makeup; it was about the profound impact it had on their perception of themselves, and that, for me, was truly rewarding.

I then followed the expected path, attending college to study advertising and PR. Don't get me wrong, I appreciated the opportunity to get creative and brainstorm new ideas. However, shortly after graduating, I found myself with a sense of unfulfillment in my chosen field. It was during this period of soul-searching that a conversation with my close friend, pursuing esthetician training, piqued my interest. She mentioned a makeup program offered at her school (New Age Spa Institute), and suddenly, a spark ignited within me. Clarity washed over me; I knew exactly where my passion lay and what I wanted to pursue. Bridal makeup artistry called out to me. As a Taurus, I've always been a hopeless romantic, so the decision was a natural fit. At that moment, no other form of makeup seemed to exist in my mind except bridal makeup. Films like "27 Dresses" and "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" had already captured my heart, serving as constant reminders of my affinity for love stories. With determination, I enrolled in the makeup course at New Age Spa Institute. Since then, my journey has been one of continuous growth and learning, as I've eagerly sought out opportunities to enhance my skills through masterclasses and workshops alongside esteemed artists in the industry.

Every day, it still feels like a dream. Sometimes, I have to remind myself, "You are a makeup artist." It's a strangely surreal feeling, knowing that I have the privilege of enhancing someone's beauty on their most special day, when they aspire to feel their most beautiful.

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