What’s going on, people? We are now in the third month of 2020. Hopefully, the year has been going well for you. You’ve been able to save money, pay off debt, or start a side hustle/business. If not, you should pay attention to this post. My side hustle series is back!
I decided to change the name to The Entrepreneur Series. My last interview went live in October, so it’s been a few months. Today, I want to introduce you to Jennifer Jackson.
Jennifer Jackson is a beauty entrepreneur, influencer, makeup artist, and photographer passionate about beauty, content design, photography, healthy living, and inspiring others. Growing up, she always had a niche in creativity and expressing her artistic abilities from drawing, painting, and doing hair. As a self-taught makeup artist, Jennifer has been an avid makeup lover for over ten years. She instantly fell into makeup artistry, beginning with eyebrow arching, filling, tinting, etc. In 2015, Jennifer was featured in The Plain Dealer and Cleveland.com for her style, makeup artistry, and notable creativity.
In early 2017 before her relocation to Atlanta, Georgia, Jennifer worked and trained alongside a team of Professional Makeup Artists at Cleveland Makeup Artistry, where she perfected her craft and learned more about the business side of makeup. In 2018, Jennifer launched her podcast, The Beauty Suite, and was featured in VoyageATL twice. Jennifer’s creative vision and direction continue to grow in her business. Jennifer J. Artistry offers makeup services in Atlanta, Georgia. In December 2019, Jennifer began her new photography business, Coffee + Shots, also servicing clients in Atlanta, Georgia.
What sparked your entrepreneurial spirit?
I’ve always known I was going to be an entrepreneur. I never wanted to be a doctor or lawyer when I was younger. I always pictured my adult life owning my business. When I was hired at my first job, I was excited to know that I was earning money, but I never accepted myself as working for someone else. Even while working, I made ways to earn extra money.
How did you get started with doing makeup?
I was never into makeup. During my teenage years, I was a tomboy. The trends of the ’90s (baggy clothes, sneakers, and oversized coats) identified my personal style. However, I was always into eyebrows. Growing up, I was an artist, and my mom bought me sketchbooks where I would draw eyes with amazing eyebrows. Fast forward to my mid-twenties, I became obsessed with my friend’s eyebrows, and she gave me the products she used to fill in her eyebrows. I practiced mastering my eyebrows until they were perfect, and I slowly started playing around with more makeup. I used to experiment with different looks, and eventually, women were asking me if I was a makeup artist. I always denied that answer until I was flooded with requests to do makeup on friends and family. It was my calling because it allowed me to express myself creatively, and I was naturally good at it.
What exactly does a MUA do?
MUA equals Makeup Artist. We are responsible for a plethora of duties. Our main goal is to ensure that we enhance our client’s beauty through the art of makeup. To me, creating a natural yet timeless look with healthy skin is my signature style of artistry. As your makeup artist, I identify myself as your “best friend behind the brush.” Most of my clients are experiencing anxiety because they usually are about to attend a special event or prepare for a photo shoot. I aim to allow you to feel as comfortable as possible as I apply your makeup.
Is it a lucrative business?
Absolutely! The beauty industry alone is a multi-billion dollar business. No matter our financial situation, women will always need beauty services; it is hair, nails, and makeup.
Is it tough to get started in the industry?
As long as you stay CONSISTENT with your work and continue to improve your artistry, you will be in the industry. Depending on which field you enter (TV/Film, editorial, bridal, special occasion), networking and spreading your business is vital. Living in Atlanta, the makeup industry is hugely oversaturated. You are responsible for continuing to create artistry that will allow you to set yourself apart from the competition.
How do you go about getting clients?
Partnering up with photographers is an excellent way to gain clients. Also, continue to promote your work on social media. I am constantly finding ways to promote my business, and I always keep my business cards on me. I have amazing friends, and they are always helping me promote my business. I am truly thankful for that.
You recently started doing photography. How is that going?
Photography was a hidden talent! I always enjoyed taking pictures but never thought of turning it into a business. So far, it is going just how I want it – slow. I am a perfectionist in my craft, and I want to avoid jumping completely out there because I lack the knowledge to run my photography business successfully. It is entirely different from makeup.
What made you get started?
My friends pushed me! Also, after the recent passing of my grandfather, he was into photography. I took it under my wing to continue his legacy. Just like when I started doing makeup, my friends asked me to take pictures for their business. I remember taking photography classes back in college, but I did not understand the technical side of photography. I am strictly a visual person, and what I see is art through my eyes, and I learned how to convey that in images taken from my camera. Afterwhile, I decided to take a couple of workshops, then everything just clicked.
How do you balance a full-time job, being a makeup artist and a photographer?
It’s hard – period! Time management is critical in balancing my triple life. Since my full-time job takes up most of my time, I have to strategize and plan my schedule for months. However, it is hard. There are days when I am completely burnt out. I had to learn not to be so hard on myself and take things one step at a time. This life is hard, but I wouldn’t change it for the world.
Any advice for someone wanting to get started?
Just do it. Have faith, and continue to work hard and believe in yourself. It is a lot of work, but it will pay off in the end.
How can people get in contact with you?
Below are some previous Side Hustle/Entrepreneur Series Interviews
Side Hustle Series: Do You Like to Write
Side Hustle Series: Simply Insurance
Side Hustle Series: Making Money Charging Scooters
Side Hustle Series: Investing in the Stock Market
Jason Butler is the owner of My Money Chronicles, a website where he discusses personal finance, side hustles, travel, and more. Jason is from Atlanta, Georgia. He graduated from Savannah State University with his BA in Marketing. Jason has been featured in Forbes, Discover, and Investopedia.