A professional Makeup Artist and beauty expert with over 10 years industry experience, Adeola Gboyega has worked for big beauty brands such as Clarins, Lancôme, Bobbi Brown and currently for Pat McGrath Labs as UK National Education and Artistry Manager. Adeola has become well known for her skin first approach to makeup, highlighting the importance of investing in great skincare to achieve makeup ready skin. Creating tutorials online, Adeola educates on how to get her signature glow look and has built up a loyal following of glow-getters.
How did you discover makeup? What was your journey into making it your career?
I have always had a love for makeup, but never knew I could do it as a career. I had never met a professional makeup artist before either. I had only ever seen the likes of Pat McGrath in the magazines. I studied Media and Communications at University thinking that I could become a beauty journalist, maybe working for the glossy magazines or even in beauty PR, but the pull of being creative was way too much. Once I finished my degree, I decided to train as a makeup artist. I worked my way up on the beauty counters and I’ve been in the industry now for 10 years.
You’re the expert when it comes to creating a gorgeous glow. What are your kit staples?
There are so many products that I love for a glow, but the main thing that I really focus on is my skin prep, and so I really love to use skincare to help create my signature glow on myself and my clients. One of my favorite brands to do this with is Sunday Riley. I love her skincare range (especially her serums and moisturizers) they just give my skin an instant glow and really help with the application of makeup. I also love complexion products. I feel, if anything, this is the place you really want to spend your time and money (on perfecting your base). I love Pat McGrath foundation, concealer and her Fetish Balm Duo & Highlighter trio as they are my kit must haves. The Hydrogrip Primer by Milk Makeup is fantastic as well as the Sleek Makeup Highlighting Elixir illuminating drops.
For makeup artists just starting out, what products would you say are essential when building your kit?
I get asked this question quite often and I always say that it’s not really about key products for your kit, but more about assessing what will work for the kind of clientele you’re going to be working on. I remember when I just started out, how expensive it was for me to build my kit. I spent a lot of money on things I never really used in the end, so what I think is important is to rethink strategically about the kind of makeup that you are going to be creating and the clientele you’re going to have. Really invest in multitasking products. For example, get a couple shades of foundation colors and then you can mix-and-match. The Bobbi Brown BBU palettes are amazing because they have all the foundation colors, correctors and concealers you need, and you can mix accordingly. They also have a lip one too. I always say that as a makeup artist, you should use your imagination. Don’t just take things at face value and only use products literally. Even if it is listed as a powder. it doesn’t mean you have to use it just as a powder. It can be a bronzer, or a contour product . It is important that you’re able to mix things up when needed, adapt and think on your feet. It’s more about your technique than it is about the products.
What’s the hardest part about being a makeup artist that no one warns you about?
I think the thing that people don’t understand is that makeup is hard work. People just see the end result of the beautiful makeup or the incredible images of your work on Instagram and think it’s a glamorous life you lead. They don’t understand that make up is essentially a culmination of all your hard work and dedication over the years, to be able to perfect your craft. For example, everything that I can do today is the product of 10 years hard graft, training and learning. It’s a lot of practice hours and expensive training. Many of the most successful makeup artists have been working hard behind-the-scenes for years, before they even made it and they’re still constantly learning to this day. There is also a lot of preparation that goes into your work beforehand. For example, if your doing a shoot, it’s prepping your kit, cleaning your brushes, sanitizing everything and prepping before you actually create a look with a mood board and meetings with designers and stylists etc. It’s hard work!
As the UK Education and Artistry Manager for Pat McGrath Labs, what is the best part about your job?
The best part about my job is the fact that I get to work for the most influential makeup artist in the world. Even though I’ve only been working for brand in such a short time, I’ve learnt so much about makeup in the year, and nearly a half that I’ve been at Pat McGrath Labs. I’ve develop my technique and artistic skills. One thing that I really learnt from Pat is the art of intentional makeup. Ensuring that everything I create has great intention and thought behind it. Also, doing research constantly to help inspire me. I’ve travelled vastly to some of the most incredible places that I wouldn’t have had the chance to go to and have met some of the most incredible people.
We also know you love skincare, and we’re approaching the winter months. What are your go-to tips for protecting your skin as we change seasons and keeping that glow?
One of the things I really advocate for during the winter months, is to switch up your skincare routine. I always like to think of skincare as a wardrobe. You have your seasonal outfits that you wear depending on what time of the year it is. Apply the same thought process to your skincare routine. You wouldn’t wear the same clothes all year round, so why use the same skincare?
What you should be doing, is adding in products that are going to help boost hydration for the winter, as well as condition the skin and replenish. Things like central heating and the cold can really wreck havoc on your skin. It’s important to assess your skincare and change it up frequently, just as you would do with changing your outfits throughout the year. Layering is key!
What advice would you give to makeup artists who are just starting out?
Be prepared to work hard and to continue to work hard! I remember that I was so hungry and eager at the beginning of my career. I was so open to any and every opportunity as well. Whether that was networking and stepping out of my comfort zone, or asking to assist makeup artists, working on counter and using it as an opportunity to develop my craft and technique. Practicing on family and friends and making little to no money, but it all helped me get to where I am now. Don’t be afraid to continue learning. Even with the fact I’ve been in the industry for 10 years, I’m still learning to this day because there’s always something new that you can learn. The minute that you stop learning, is when you stop being a true makeup artist.
What’s on your vision board right now?
This is a great question. I really believe in the power of visualization and I actually do a vision board every single year. It’s such an important tool to really help you focus on your achievements and dreams and to help you focus on your passion, when you feel your passion wane or when you feel really down. During lockdown, I was going through a very difficult period with my mental health and so I created a vision board and this really helped me put myself back in a good place and focus on my hopes and dreams. On my vision board I have a range of things on there, such as positive words and affirmations, images of strong black, powerful women such as Pat McGrath, Serena Williams and Oprah. I love shoes and handbags, so I have some images of shoes on my wish list. I also have images of things I aspire to do in terms of skincare and makeup as well. I can honestly say that so many of these things come true for me, year after year.
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