From the moment one meets Sharmila, she is all business. She sits upright, her eyes attentive and focused. She smiles politely, but formally.
Despite it being an early morning when this interview took place, she was energetic. Her answers were short and to the point, reflecting her carpe diem attitude.
At 26, Sharmila has the personal discipline that many of us might struggle with. She’s a professional makeup artist from Johor Bahru, and works 10 hours a day, almost every day.
It’s a tiring job, but she considers it her passion. “Since I was young, I’ve always seen makeup as an art. I always admired people who could beautify themselves. I consider it a talent,” she said.
It’s a talent that Sharmila has spent most of her life honing. She goes through beauty magazines every day to have a better understanding of the art.
“I even go on YouTube and Instagram, just to learn the latest trends. I practice on myself daily until I get it right. To improve my skills, I attended ARTISTRY workshops, just to see how professionals do it.”
ARTISTRY is a skin care and cosmetic brand available exclusively for Amway customers. They combine science, nutrition, and art to create revolutionary cosmetic products. They also host workshops to teach women the latest makeup trends and showcase their latest cosmetic line.
Sharmila is a Passionista, which is what ARTISTRY calls their beauty advocates.
With so many hours dedicated to makeup, one wonders – is that what beauty really means to her?
“No, not really,” she says.
“Beauty isn’t just skin deep – it’s really a lot to do about confidence. It’s about OWNING who you are and expressing that.
“Makeup simply allows people to look their best. To attract people to look at you. But once you have their attention, it’s your personality and confidence that has to keep them.”
What do you consider beautiful about yourself?
“I stand up for what I believe in. Always. Even if it means people not liking what I have to say,” she answers, without hesitation.
“But, I like people. I like mingling with people, and I find that people like talking to me too. I like being around those who are successful and motivated. I want to be like them, so I want to know how they became that way. That’s what I like about myself, and what I consider to be beautiful.”
Sharmila is a strong proponent of health. She believes that beauty is a product of taking care of yourself physically and emotionally. “If you want to be beautiful, you’ve got to take care of your physical and emotional health. Take care of your skin. Eat more fruits. Exercise regularly.”
“Also laugh a lot and be positive always.”
Who are your role models? Who’s beautiful to you?
“My parents. They worked really hard to get us where we are today. My work ethic was influenced by them. They never complained about life even though it was difficult. They just kept grinding.
“My mom for example, she came from a poor family. She didn’t have the best education. But still, she had the confidence to start her own business. Because she didn’t have much, she had to work from the ground up, learning everything step by step.
“That’s why I work so hard today – I know the sacrifices my parents had to make, so our family can live comfortably.”
Could you share a beauty tip with us?
“Look good in photos,” she says. “Photos are everywhere now, and it’s forever, so it’s important that you look your best in them. There are three things you need for a good photo – good lighting, good camera and a good pose. First, know your lighting. It’s not enough to just have a bright light – you need to diffuse it. Scatter the light so it spreads evenly on your face.
“Second, use a good camera! Cameras on high-end smartphones are good, but make sure the selfie camera works well too. You’ll never look good on a low-resolution picture.
“Finally, find your best angle. Practice taking photos from all angles. Generally, the best angles are when you’re looking up at your camera. But everyone has a pose where they look the most beautiful – make that your default. Don’t forget to have other poses too, so you have variety.”
And there you have it – Sharmila’s 3 tips on how to look good in photos!
For more makeup and beauty tips, follow Sharmila’s Instagram @Selfiequee_n!
This story is brought to you by The Passionista Beauty Series with Artistry. Stay tuned for more upcoming stories and videos!