Mommy, Make-Up, And Me

My relationship with beauty started at a young age as did dance. I was about five or six when I started traveling and performing. My mom was quickly appointed as dance mom and tried to keep up with the others to the best of her ability. It was all about big tight curls, red lipstick and glitter. Lots of it.

As an immigrant with little knowledge of make up, I had to learn with her. I remember seeing her buy curlers and drug store products to expand her range and utilize her ever-growing knowledge. I remember seeing her getting frustrated when the curlers wouldn’t stay and the lingering shadow of show time was hovering over us, yet she never gave up. I'm so grateful for her hardworking efforts to ensure I fit in well with the other girls. Adjustment and adaptation is never easy but my mom made it happen. Make-up was more than just me digging through my mom’s make-up bag. It was truly a vehicle for bonding with my mom and jumpstarting my own relationship with beauty.

Wearing Mented’s lipstick in  Nude La La

Wearing Mented’s lipstick in Nude La La

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If there’s anything I love most from Mented, it’s their lipsticks. Their extensive range compliments every warm-colored skin tone, making it the perfect match for every look. I’m sure if these options were available back then, my mom would’ve had a less tedious make-up journey. However, I’m incredulously grateful that we have inclusive brands such as Mented so that I can bond with my future daughter when she falls in love with dance.

Eventually, I got exhausted from the glitz and glam (only to return to it years later). I couldn’t get away with my love for expression, whether it was through dance, beauty, writing and eventually fashion. Growing up attending Catholic school for a majority of my educational career, my desire to express would exude in every opportunity possible; sometimes it’d even create opportunities on its own. I’d be in three-hour detention almost every weekend, to the point where I was paying to be at detention, then eventually almost receiving a demerit for not adhering to dress code. I was never the type to be told what to do.

Wearing Mented’s blush in  Peach For the Stars

Wearing Mented’s blush in Peach For the Stars

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Soon after, I was encouraged by friends to combine writing and fashion, eventually leading me to posting about it on every platform that existed circa 2011. As the birth of Instagram allowed for me to explore my desire for expression to its fullest, it eventually became what is now Polydeux.

Through Polydeux, I’ve had the pleasure of working with brands such as Tesla, Nordstrom, and Google through digital strategy and content creation. It’s not the easiest job in the world, and certainly not the safest financially, but being my own boss and impacting others through visual storytelling makes it all the more worth it.

My advice? Do what you love, the money will always follow and never let anyone tell you you can’t do it.

Mariel Cornel