11 Questions With Makeup Artist Sarah Redzikowski
Sarah is a licensed cosmetologist, makeup artist, hair stylist and beauty writer. Her vast studies in art, broadcast journalism and cosmetology has led her into the beauty industry and established her understanding of light, color and balance. Her artistry has been featured in editorials, advertising campaigns and even her own shows and presentations for Versace, Stella & Dot, WWD MAGIC and many more. Sarah’s attention to detail has led her to work as a key artist for Bruno Mars’ new music video, 24K Magic and with networks such as MTV and E! Her broad resume and experience, demonstrates her ability to provide quality makeup and hair for nearly any situation and need, leaving her clients looking and feeling their best. Currently, Sarah reaches 1.3 million people monthly as a beauty contributor for Las Vegas magazine, where she melds her talent for creative direction, planning and writing.
Today we dive into the world of makeup with Sarah Redzikowski. She shares with us how she started in the field as well as some tips one may need to know to break into the industry.
1. When did you become interested in makeup?
I always showed an interest in makeup growing up, thanks to my Mother and watching her get ready. This is way before YouTube, Instagram etc. I scoured magazines and music videos for different ideas that I practiced on myself and willing friends and cheerleading teammates. We didn’t have a mall (and before online shopping) where I grew up, so I was limited to what was available at the grocery store, Walmart or what my Mom was willing to purchase for me from Mary Kay. Many tragic makeup moments ensued (I’m looking at you, translucent powder that was filled with glitter on my teenage, broken out skin and every, single frosty shadow that I got my hands on!).
2. At what point did you realize makeup was something you wanted to take on professionally?
I decided to do Cosmetology school after doing the traditional college route. At that point, I still didn’t consider doing makeup as a career and intended on doing cut/ color once I graduated. I was lucky enough to attend the amazing Paul Mitchell the School, in Las Vegas. I learned about the many facets of the industry and the opportunities I was given there were truly life changing. One of our guest speakers early on in my education was James Ryder, a professional makeup artist. I did a workshop with James and he saw something in me which gave me the initial spark. Soon thereafter, I had the opportunity to assist the makeup team on a Paul Mitchell hair show in Las Vegas. The lead makeup artist at that show, Brittany Troche, inspired me and became my mentor and dear friend. She has coached me since then and I continue to do shows with her across the country and around the world as part of the Paul Mitchell team.
3. Were there any mentors/inspirations that pushed you to get started?
Brittany Troche is who I owe my entire career to. Without her guidance, faith and incredible knowledge, I couldn’t tell you where I would be. I have many inspirations, Pat McGrath, Lottie Stannard, Rae Morris, Eny Whitehead, Isamaya French, Pati Dubroff, Alex Box, Lan Nguyen-Grealis, my friend Homa Safar, and so, so many more.
4. Early on in your career, did you find yourself doing a lot of free work/test shoots?
Absolutely and I will never stop testing. The intention of testing for me has always been to build my book and create higher caliber of work with every shoot. It’s my opportunity to keep my hands busy, to practice and work with new people or my established teams. This is the way that I keep my portfolio fresh and keep from getting too comfortable and stagnant in my career. I hope to always grow and testing is one way to do just that.
5. Have you been traveling a lot since pursuing makeup?
I travel fairly often. Primarily with Paul Mitchell, I’ve done shows all over the country and the world. We are doing this year’s Gathering in Sardinia, Italy and I can’t wait!
6. What are some skills you feel one should develop when pursuing makeup?
Set etiquette. Attention to detail is very important. Too many artists rely on photoshop to fix their mistakes. Proper hygiene, sanitation and cleanliness is THE MOST IMPORTANT. I’m still shocked at the state of some artists’ kits and don’t use disposable mascara wands or even worse, double dip mascara wands. Learning how to prevent the spread of disease should be the first thing every artist learns.
7. How important is social media for makeup artists today?
For me, social media has been a moot point. I do get some work from social media, but not a ton and certainly not enough to sustain my career. I think artists should focus more on doing quality work and being easy to work with. In my opinion, your reputation will always follow you and is worth more than your social media following.
8. What are you top 3 essential makeup tools that you can’t live without?
9. What advice do you have for makeup artist who are just starting in the industry?
Assist and test. DeShaun Hatcher has an amazing book about assisting, buy it, study it and follow the advice. Begin working on your portfolio and always strive to step forward with every shoot. There is NO reason to put work that isn’t yours on your website or in your portfolio (seems common sense but I’ve seen it with new and established artists), you need to always have your own work wherever you are marketing yourself. Don’t get over your head with jobs that you can’t perform EXCEPTIONALLY WELL (why assisting is important) and charge what you’re worth. If you continually undercut other artists on rates, you will begin to set a standard of what your craft is worth and you will hurt your career in the long run, as well as other artists’. (DeShaun’s assisting book is available here: http://www.deshawnlovesmakeup.com/assisting-rules-the-book)
10. If you could change something in the industry where you currently are, what would it be?
I’m grateful for every opportunity and everything I’ve achieved to this day and to be a part of an industry that I love. I have no need to change a thing.
11. What is your biggest makeup pet peeve?