Making it up as she goes

    Priscilla Jauregui stands outside her apartment in Winnetka, Calif. on Sept. 15, 2017 after she puts on her makeup for the day. Jauregui is a makeup artist that specializes in weddings.

    Like a painter’s blank canvas or a sculptor’s block of clay, the human face is where Priscilla Jauregui finds her inspiration.

    Jauregui, a liberal studies major, was the only child in a family raised by inspirational female figures. Her earliest memories of makeup come from her mother, grandmother and older cousins.

    “My grandma used to do makeup when she was younger, and I would see her do her makeup and use her eyebrow brush,” Jauregui said.

    She also recalls taking inspiration from her cousins and wanting to be just like them when she grew up.

    “All my cousins are older than me, and they all wore makeup. My cousin curled my lashes, and I just remember loving how big my eyes looked,” Jauregui said.

    After having her cousin curl her eyelashes for the first time, Jauregui said, she started experimenting with eyeliner. She would line in and around her eyes, then brush through her eyebrows, and after that, apply mascara. When she decided to move on from lining her waterline, she soon discovered her love for winged liner and has since made it a staple in her day-to-day makeup routine.

    Jauregui showcases her makeup abilities on her professional Instagram page, which attracts new clients.

    No’Elani Nevis, Jauregui’s friend, encouraged her to take advantage of social media as a platform to share her talent when she first began her journey as a makeup artist.

    “You need to get out there. Do Instagram, really push it, do all the tags, get yourself out there and get some followers,” Nevis said.

    She advised Jauregui to “create a screen name and just start using social media.”

    In addition to Instagram, Jauregui said she is experimenting with creating makeup videos on Youtube. However, she is still contemplating whether or not to post them.

    “It’s scary. It’s kind of nerve-racking. I have a few videos, but I haven’t hit the upload button,” Jauregui said.

    Jauregui has been doing makeup professionally for approximately two years, and she has seen the most growth in clientele due to recommendations from family and friends.

    “It’s all by word of mouth,” Jauregui said. “Honestly, that’s the biggest help. All of my clients started with my cousin, and then my cousin’s friend, then my friend, and then my friend’s friend, and people just recommend me.”

    Jauregui, who began playing with makeup when she was 13, said she never looked at it as a challenge.

    In addition to everyday makeup, Jauregui does makeup for engagement shoots, quinceaneras, proms, weddings, and any other clientele requests. She’s also experimented with mermaid makeup and Halloween looks.

    One memorable look for Jauregui was a makeup piece she did for an engagement shoot.

    “I just loved the glitter and the cut crease; it was so pretty,” Jauregui said.

    Susan Canchola, Jauregui’s cousin, said she particularly admires a Morticia Addams-inspired look that she did for her sister’s Halloween costume.

    “She gave her a very gothic look, and she had very deep, sunken cheeks, and it was so dramatic and so gorgeous,” Canchola said.

    However, Jauregui’s favorite of her looks was a ‘sugar skull’ makeup piece she did. She said she was shocked with how well it turned out.

    According to Canchola, experimentation allows Jauregui to “see what limits she’ll push” and that’s how she continues to learn.

    Canchola, an avid supporter of Jauregui’s work, encourages her cousin to practice on her.

    “I always tell her, ‘Go crazy. Do what you want and experiment on me.’ Because I don’t mind,” Canchola said.

    Proud of her cousin’s work, Canchola said, “So much glam goes on, the eyelashes are super dramatic and the eyebrows are perfect and sculpted.”

    Nevis, who is currently planning her wedding, said she trusts Jauregui to do her makeup for her bridal shower, wedding, rehearsal dinner and all wedding-related events.

    “I definitely support her, and I try to push her as much as I can,” Nevis said.

    And though Jauregui’s greatest challenge when first taking makeup jobs was wanting her client’s approval, she expressed joy in making customers satisfied.  

    “It makes me so happy because I did that, and I helped contribute,” Jauregui said.

    Jauregui said feedback is her greatest success. However, Nevis believes Jauregui doesn’t acknowledge her full potential.

    “She doesn’t give herself enough credit,” Nevis said. “I think she’s so good, but she’s so humble about it. She doesn’t even know how good she is yet.”

    According to Jauregui, close family and friends are her support system, helping her to exceed the goals she has set for herself.

    “I feel like she can go as far as the stars,” Canchola said.

    To view a timelapse of her putting on makeup, click here