Looking back, my wedding makeup artist was my guardian angel, giving me peace of mind, removing all worries and making me feel absolutely beautiful at the same time. I’m in awe of these talented folks who help us ladies shine the brightest when we need to the most and one of our favs, Christine Cho, is sharing her secrets on everything from what inspires her to the most essential beauty detail not to be missed!
1. How did you get into makeup artistry?
I was always an artist – as a young child, my parents had put me into private art classes for painting, drawing, sculpting, etc – so my transition from fine art into makeup art felt quite natural. Same craft, just different canvas. While completing my Bachelors in English Literature at the University of Toronto, I started to dabble in doing makeup for friends’ weddings. I started doing it for fun, and that turned into a hobby, and then an obsession and career once I graduated. I did professional training for makeup at George Brown College, set up a website and business card, and started hustling. The rest is beautiful history.
2. What’s your personal motto, or a phrase that inspires you creatively?
“Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist” – Pablo Picasso
This quote resonates with me because it embodies what it means to call yourself a “professional artist.” We are so lucky to do what most people do as a hobby, as a career – something we get paid to do, full time; something people see us as “experts” in. I’m a firm believer in dedicating many hours in education, training, learning from all sources in order to become the top leader, so that you have the authority to redefine them or create your own.
3. Can you describe your aesthetic in three words?
Diverse. Flawless. Effortless.
4. What are three things you can’t live without?
Good food, live music, and sunshine.
5. Where do you find inspiration?
Literally everywhere – fairytales, cartoons, nature, food, fashion, paintings, travel and other life experiences.
6. What’s your favorite social media platform?
7. What is a beauty detail that often gets overlooked, that you wish got more attention in the planning process?
Skincare. Many people forget that the canvas, which is the face/skin, is the most important part of makeup art. The better condition the canvas is in, the better the art will look in the end. Good skin, properly cared for long term as well as properly prepared in the short term on the big day, will allow for makeup to last longer, feel better, and look flawless and true. I never begin applying any makeup on the face without proper skin prep.
8. What do you think is the most important question a client can ask, when deciding who to hire for their wedding’s makeup artist?
Although this may translate in reality to many questions, and non verbal observation, the most important thing a client can ask (herself) is: Is this artist able and willing to COLLABORATE with me in order to create my ideal wedding day makeup look? Meaning, will she consider my preferences while providing professional guidance; will she make me feel comfortable while making me look beautiful; will we work well TOGETHER?
9. What’s been your proudest professional accomplishment as a makeup artist?
Without a doubt, one of my proudest professional accomplishments was the honour of being a resident Beauty Expert on CBC’s Steven & Chris Show for 6 seasons here in Toronto. Before the unfortunate passing of our darling Christopher Hyndman, I had the life-changing experience of learning and growing beyond words as an artist and TV personality among the most talented, funny, intelligent and wonderful people. The show appeared in nearly 80 countries worldwide, and covered everything from home decor, cooking, lifestyle, fashion and of course, beauty. Many people don’t know the back story, but I actually got myself on to the show as an on-camera expert by cold-calling the switchboard. Yes, really. And somehow, someone, somewhere at the network saw something in me, that was worthy to give a chance. Life is definitely about the opportunities you take (and make)!
10. When you’re not working, what do you like to do for fun?
When I’m not drawing on people, I’m cooking or travelling. And posting pictures of it all on Instagram.
Photography: Erwin Loewen | Makeup + Hair: Christine Cho Beauty