A big part of taking great portraits of women — which is what I do best in my role as a portrait photographer — is getting them ready with great hair and makeup styling. I’m fortunate to have a wonderful team of stylists to call on for my portrait shoots, whether it’s for a glam mother and daughter session, or for a highly professional look for a corporate portrait. Today I’d like you to meet one of the team: the lovely Eloise Proust.
Tell us what you do for work, Eloise
I’m a professional makeup artist, specialising in bridal makeup.
Why did you start your business?
I wanted to make a career of my passions: art and makeup artistry.
What is it about your business that makes you different from other makeup artists?
I believe having and artistic background has given me a great eye for detail, and made me the perfectionist that I am. There are a lot of makeup artists around these days, and so many of them think of makeup as a mask and end up applying too much. I believe makeup is an art form. When makeup is used correctly it enhances a woman’s best features. You should notice those beautiful features before you see the makeup.
Did you do a slow transition from a day job to running your own business full time? Or did you jump in boots and all?
It was definitely a slow transition to build up my business and be able to do what I love full time. I worked in jobs through the week that I didn’t really enjoy to get me by and slowly over 5 or 6 years I began to get my name out there and was able to increase my makeup business to being a full time career.
What does a typical day look like for you?
My days are always very different! Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays I’m usually up at around 5 am to travel to a wedding. I’ll do about 6 or 7 faces of makeup and then from there go to other makeup jobs in the afternoon. Those would be for women going out to a special occasion or I could be in my studio trialing makeup looks for new brides.
What do you like most about the work that you do?
I love meeting so many new and interesting people every week. I’m always on the go and I never get bored. Most of all I love what I do because I get to help women see the beauty in themselves that they often don’t see. Women are so often focused on what they don’t like about themselves, so it’s nice to bring out their natural beauty and give them that extra confidence. I always compliment every single person who sits in my makeup chair, and my compliments are always genuine. I think people underestimate the power of a kind word. One nice comment can stay with us a lifetime!
If there were one piece of advice you could give your clients, what would it be?
Less is more! Make sure you have the right foundation for your skin type and skin colour. Try to have sun protection in your foundation or moisturizer and always look after your skin before bed. Remove all makeup, especially eye makeup. I think RMS coconut oil is the best product ever for removing eye makeup and caring for your lashes. Well, that’s actually four things! Sorry. Can’t say just one!
You arrive at your jobs with a couple of suitcases full of hair styling equipment and makeup. Tell us, what’s in your own personal makeup bag?
My personal makeup bag is extremely small and simple: Laura Mercier illuminating tinted moisturizer, and a good quality hydrating foundation, often it’s Chanel Vitalumiere. I also always have a good quality mascara, and i love Terry Lash Booster Mascara. One of those lasts me a long time! I always like to have moisturized lips with a tint of colour, and I adore Josie Maran lip oil or Lano Lips lip tint. For eyes it’s nice to have one eye shadow palette you can use all the time. Eyeshadows with good pigment will last all day, and I love MAC, Tom Ford or Charlotte Tilbury.
What is one of the best things that has happened in your business life?
Just watching my business grow over the years and being able to do what I love full time. I’ve also been blessed in making life long friends through my business with the beautiful women I get to meet: clients, photographers and other makeup artists.
We’ve all had things go awry for us in business. What’s the worst thing that has happened to you in business, and how did you recover from it?
We’re all human, and mistakes are bound to happen. Touch wood, I’ve never had anything major go wrong like double booking a bride, but you’re always going to make a silly mistake here and there, like forgetting to put a trial appointment in your diary because a client called you when you were on the road, for example. You learn from every mistake and you do what you can to make sure it doesn’t happen again. Having your own business means you are constantly learning. I think your clients will usually be very understanding if you give a sincere apology and offer to make it up to them in some way.
What do you do in your down time?
I love reformer Pilates. I find it’s a great way to de-stress and stretch, which I think is important. I love eating out and finding new delicious places for lunch with friends. Oh, and I like to go to the art gallery and spend time with my family, too.
Dog or cat?
Dog, but I’ve never owned a cat.
When I was young I used to collect….
My room was filled with crystals and candles. You are always still your own inner child, that’s for sure!
If you could meet your teenage self, what would you say to her?
Believe in yourself! And always trust your intuition. It’s rarely wrong.
Eloise is available for wedding, editorial/photo shoot, and television makeup work. You can find her here:
facebook: Eloise Proust Makeup Artist
**Eloise’s profile picture by Carol Zat, and used with permission.