For this week’s Portrait of the Week, I am featuring a very good friend of mine, the humble yet talented Anita Lee. Anita is a Hair and Makeup Artist, Wedding Specialist and VCC instructor. She is also a Co-owner and Senior Hair & Makeup Artist at Helmet & Company Salon. She is an inspiration to many around her and someone that I truly look up to. She is a person of integrity, passion and creativity. I am so honored to be featuring her on this week’s Portrait of the week!
Q: What is your business philosophy?
A: I look at my business as my livelihood. I always put my heart, mind and soul to even the smallest acts in everything I do. My business is my passion and my love. I am very lucky to be doing what I do and I am really grateful to be doing what I love. Therefore, I don’t look at it as my business but simply as part of my life.
Q: What do you think is the key to success in your business?
A: If I can share my success then that is success to me. I like to share everything. You are stronger when you can share and offer. My main goal is to do what I do best. What I do best is hair and makeup. I wouldn’t be able to do what I love and create room for growth if I didn’t share my work space, knowledge, and passion. You can’t do everything yourself, you have to branch out. I truly think I am born to do what I do. I want to take what I do and stretch it out into different avenues because I am capable of doing great things. That confidence comes with experience.
Q: What is your philosophy in life?
A: Big part of my life is my business, It is a part of me. I like to share my love. I truly believe in sharing and giving. I feel fortunate to be able to share my wealth. It is important to be kind and understanding to others, and because I have the capability, I believe in giving and taking care of people. If I were selfish, I would be contracting everything, my motto, my business philosophy and the purpose of starting my business. I feel good when I give, and that is all.
Q: What is your personal motto?
A: I truly believe in building genuine and lasting relationships. I’ve always been eager to share my knowledge with people that are passionate about getting into the beauty industry. I always share the importance of building friendships with clients, associates and vendors…etc
Q: What was your inspiration to become involved in the beauty business?
A: Where I believe things are meant to be is because of a part time job. I needed a part time job when I was 17. I landed a job at a hair salon and what inspired me was the feeling that I was able to do a lot more than what I saw. At that point, I didn’t know anything about the beauty industry, but everything that I saw I was able to duplicate. I had no education or training but I felt that I was able to take the whole realm of the beauty industry and bring it to another level. It was an airy and dreamy kind of thought. I didn’t know if it was going to work out, but I had goals. I gave myself the habit of mastering little goals, from mastering to become the best receptionist at the salon to remembering all the ingredients off of a shampoo label or being the best at shampooing clients’ hair, all these little steps led to where I am now.
Q: You have recently opened up your own salon, what qualities do you believe a person who wants to get into the beauty industry needs to possess?
A: Dedication is key. You have to be truly honest with yourself and must be able to go through hardships. Being truly honest is thinking there is no free lunch. You have to start from the bottom, and not expect things to be given to you. You have to earn it and not take things for granted in order to be in the same mind frame as I am. There should not be a sense of entitlement. You have to feel so confident and own up to each goal. You have to be willing to work your way up and not take anything for granted, success does not come over night.
Q: How and what do you do to stay inspired?
A: That is where I branch out to different areas and experiment with many things. Inspiration is something that I naturally create for myself. I don’t go out and find things for inspiration. I continue to be good to myself at every stage that I am at. When an opportunity comes my way and if I am capable, then I would take on the challenge. However, I would always tie the opportunity and challenge back to what my core is and what I know best, which is makeup and hair. Whenever these opportunities come along, they open up my creativity. The inspiration comes from the elements that are given to me and the creativity within me molds that into an inspiration. I do not like to copy and find inspirations by taking other peoples’ work and pacing elements together to call my own. My career is based on my style, my taste and what I believe in. I am a professional. People that I work with also inspire me. They inspire me with their personalities and surroundings and from those elements I create something unique but still always stay true to myself.
Q: What is your favorite go to makeup look?
A: I am a lashes girl. False lashes and mascara, that is my go to makeup look.
Q: What are three beauty items that you will always keep in your purse?
A: I always and only keep a lip balm in my purse.
Q: What’s the beauty rule you preach…but never actually practice?
A: I do follow all the rules that I preach. The only one that I can think of is maybe to exfoliate your lips. My routine for myself is very simple, I don’t’ have any complications, I don’t have a favorite product. I think every makeup brand has their strength and benefits. I am not a makeup junkie. I am open to using and testing different kinds of makeup and brands. I believe when things are made and when people put in effort to make a product there is always a reason behind it. The product doesn’t just get developed for any reason. I respect every beauty industry and any makeup product.
Q: One makeup item that you would splurge on…
A: Eye cream is a makeup item that I would splurge on.
Q: Do you prefer…
Blush or bronzer
Lip gloss or lipstick
Eye liner or mascara
Foundation or concealer
Brushes or sponges
Curly hair or straight hair
Bun or ponytail
Light hair or dark hair
Side sweep bangs or full bangs
Up or down