WOMAN OF PASSION: My skin taught me how to be a make-up artiste
12 months ago, 12 Jan 21:30
“I lost my father in 2006; I was 20 and had just graduated from college with a diploma in business. My plan had been to go on to university to study for an undergraduate in communications but with his passing, I put a pause on my education to find a job instead. My big brother did the same thing; my little sister had just joined Form One. “I got a job as a cashier at Steak & Ale, a bar in Nairobi’s CBD. I earned a paltry Sh4,000 and worked lengthy irregular shifts, especially on the weekends. I wasn’t happy. I didn’t like the work. I was battling adult acne so my self-esteem was brutally dented; I was also still grieving the loss of my father. “I worked there for six months then – thankfully – got another job at the business centre of Southern Sun, a hotel in Westlands. The pay was much better and I worked regular eight-hour shifts. I loved the job because it taught me patience, professionalism and a strong work ethic. The medley of clients I served also exposed me to the importance of knowing how to talk to people and understanding their individual needs. I use that skill a lot in my business now. “I was recognised and rewarded for my stellar performance, and in late 2008, I was promoted to the front office. Customer service came naturally to me and in less than a year, I had moved from manning the switchboard to being the Guest Relations Manager; I was engaging our guests firsthand. QUITTING WORK “It was while here that I finally addressed the acne and started toying with make-up. The acne had left my skin dry, blotched and patchy. My face wasn’t in the best shape but the three years at the hotel had salvaged my self-esteem to the point where my smile and radiant personality made me comfortable being myself. “I bought products worth Sh20,000 from Mary Kay. I bought skincare and basic make-up – mascara, lipstick, eyeliner – and religiously followed the cleanse-tone-moisturise regimen every morning before applying the make-up to go to work, and every evening before going to bed. I saw an immediate and tremendous transformation in my skin; even my colleagues and our guests noticed the glow. I was happy and I felt beautiful – I hadn’t felt beautiful in a long time. “I married in December 2011 and had my daughter in May 2013. (I’d later have my son in August 2016.) Pregnancy then becoming a new mum stirred a desire in me to slow down and listen to my body. I needed to rest: I was 27 and I was tired because I’d been working since I was 20. I had missed out on my youthful days. Life had demanded I grow up too fast. The question was always: ‘What’s your next step, Sheero?’ I just couldn’t do it anymore. So while still on maternity leave, I handed in my resignation letter. I allowed ...
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