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Life and Work with Nicole Aguiar

Today we’d like to introduce you to Nicole Aguiar.

Nicole, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
My story is a sweet paradox of discovery that has placed me into the most blessed lifestyle an artist could ask for. I call myself an artist although my specialty is makeup, I have dabbled in other forms including abstract body painting, dance, mixed media art, and poetry. I am inspired by all that surrounds me.

I landed a summer job as a retail Makeup Artist for MAC Cosmetics shortly after graduating high school in the 90’s and there and then, I fell in love with the Art of Makeup. I became passionate about working with people and because I am naturally creative; makeup was an expansive outlet to express myself within. I was not sure which direction it would take me, so I decided to hold on for the ride and seek a career as a makeup artist in any which way I could. Hailing from San Diego we did not have any sort of makeup school back then and I could not afford to go to Los Angeles, so I decided to teach myself by learning from as many brands, trainers, celebrity artists, dancers, musicians and anyone I could. I educated myself and attained both an Esthetician and Cosmetology license as well as an ITEC Certification so I was able to travel. I was fascinated by the science of Beauty as an art form.

Traveling was always in my heart so after working at a prestigious local spa named Beauty Kliniek for some years developing their Makeup department with success; I was prospected by a company named Glo Minerals to travel as a National Makeup Educator. At the age of 26, I hosted workshops, worked with celebrities and booked events in some of the most amazing cities in the U.S. including: San Francisco, Seattle, Portland, Los Angeles, New Orleans, Chicago, Boston, and Miami to name a few. I also freelanced and did whatever type of makeup I could- bridal, fashion shows, test shoots, events, arts education and back then, you had to really put yourself out there to find work. I ended up published in 24/7 magazine which was the origin of 944 as well as Guitar One magazine which is long gone also. I became really multifaceted and loved freelancing for brands by sharing my expertise in skin, hair and makeup. Sharing my love for music, I also began to network within the music industry in San Diego and worked with members of some pretty famous bands including Marcos Curiel from POD and Rafael Reyes from Prayers. I am into alternative music and fashion so it has always been a side project for me to work with anyone, not into the mainstream. I like the macabre, the odd and left out a type of artist… the underdog rings true with me as I had to work so hard to get where I am today.

I am a self-taught makeup artist that grew up in the industry before the social media phenomenon that has hit the way we market and educate ourselves. I have worked in fashion, television and film including music videos all without going to a formal makeup school. I was able to place myself with brands that took me places and gave me experienced opportunities that took me further.I was prospected early on to share my tips on makeup application so teaching became a natural process for me to fall into. Now, I get to give back by teaching at Bellus Academies 3 different campuses in San Diego with their impressive Makeup Designory program.

I still freelance and travel as needed. I am truly blessed and content with my journey and yet the best part is that it is still going…

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
It has not always been smooth and the times change so you have to change with them. My advice would be to continuously feed an outlet that feeds your soul. Be one with your purpose and just keep dreaming big. We as humans are attracted to what we think of so it makes us realize that we really can manifest big endeavors.
Self-actualizing yourself as Artist is the most liberating feeling one can have. Keep it real always and don’t give up.

Please tell us about Makeup Artist and Educator.
What sets me apart from others is that I have infused my career as a Makeup Artist with diversity by providing anything from wellness concepts to alternative beauty. I believe that you can take care of your skin, support cruelty-free brands all while being flamboyant or natural and yet still be modern. I support individuality so I am able to work with so many different walks of life. I believe in Radical Inclusion.

I offer professional makeup artistry services for fashion, film, photography, education and events. I also provide airbrush applications, face and body painting and Out of the Kit Special f/x makeup.

Were there people and/or experiences you had in your childhood that you feel laid the foundation for your success?
I have a unique cultural background where my heritage spans from Native American and English/German to Mexican Native and Spanish descendant and I was born in Tijuana, Mexico. Being bi-racial was always different for me as I never felt like I fully fit in with one culture. I think it made me feel like I was really on my own at times… so, it was a catalyst for me to strive to take care of myself completely in life. To be independent and always follow my heart… it set me up for success because I worked harder to be my own brand.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Photographer Jonathan Sevilla, Hair styling Mayra Estrada, Photographer Harry Eelman, Hair styling Dylan Chavles

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