On November 19th I received the Top 40 Under 40 Urban Elite Award in the Entrepreneurship category. I am still so humbled by the honor because makeup artistry is not usually the profession that wows everyone when you’re asked at 7 what you want to be when you grow up (although I originally wanted to be a speech pathologist and computer programmer, I’m just saying).
That day I had slicked my hair back into a ponytail with a scarf so that I could get through a schedule full of clients, 3 of which attended the gala as well. Upon walking the last client out of the door, I slapped on my 10 minute face and lucked up on a lip color that was perfect for my look! Then, I rushed to wiggle into my gown (from Dillard’s), mixed and matched shoes that I already had until I settled on a pair of patten leather shoes from God-knows-where, and my mom showed up in the nick-of-time with jewelry, accessories, and her camera to snap as many pics as she could.
When I pulled up to the venue, the building was lit with the 40 Under 40 signage, and that’s when I knew this event was about to be really prestige honey! The photographer, other recipients and attendees were outside taking pictures in front of the backdrop. I waited down to the second before taking off my coat to have my Kodak moment because baby, it was cold outside!
But, I felt and looked beautiful! So did everyone else!
Inside, the venue was magical! Decorated in ivory, black, and gold, the classic feel was perfect for the occasion. We were serenaded by Lil Rounds and served a delicious meal by one of the honorees Chef D. Arthur and his team. When the time came for the award recipients to gather before walking across the stage, we all took a moment to bask in our glory by taking plenty of shameless pictures and even creating a #blackmagic moment with the infamous mannequin challenge.
When my name was called, I walked up the stage, received my award, took a picture with Cynthia, and then proceeded back to my seat. For the most part, I was in shock. So much so that I couldn't really grasp what was happening, but now as I type, I’m in awe.
Long story short, I just felt so honored and overwhelmed to be in the room with other talented heavy hitters in the city. To be viewed as a game changer and an urban elite, AND even just as a professional is incredible, especially for a makeup artist! Me? Lil’ ol’ me with a brush? A college graduated who hasn’t touched her true career field since 2012. This experience inspired me to keep pushing my mission to create positive beauty experiences for women. I have so much more work to do, but to know that what I do makes a difference, no other feeling compares.