Today we’d like to introduce you to Bex Marie.
Hi Bex, it’s an honor to have you on the platform. Thanks for taking the time to share your story with us – to start maybe you can share some of your backstory with our readers?
In my life I have come to realise that unexpected changes in course make for the best experiences. There have been a few times I have experienced these life altering course corrections. Two spring to mind right away, the first is when I had to move from Maryland to Australia when I was 15. In the moment is seemed like this massive change that I wasn’t prepared to deal with. I quickly discovered, however, that it was one of the best things that could have happened. The second time my life steered me towards a new path unexpectedly was when I started doing makeup professionally.
Let me explain, I came to LA in 2017 when I was 18 years old to be an actress and for a long time I thought that since that’s what I forcefully changed my life for, I had to make it work. Through acting I found that I enjoyed doing my own makeup for projects and then people started to notice and ask me to do their makeup for projects whether it be commercials, events or headshots. Similarly to my move to Australia, I fought against this unexpected course correction. However, It didn’t take long for me to realise that life was giving me a new door to open. I had been trying to be an actress for so long and this new career path was suddenly just falling in my lap. In order to weigh my options I took some time away from the pressure of acting and realised that I felt more free than I had in years just from removing that expectation I put on myself to make acting work. Not to mention I suddenly was no longer in a field that focused heavily on my appearance. It was then that I chose to lean into the turn my life was taking.
I figured if people were paying me to do makeup I wanted to make sure I was worth the money so I decided to attend make-up Designory (MUD) in Burbank to learn as much about my newly chosen career. Right before I was about to embark on this exciting new journey, covid closed the entire world. Unlike the business classes I was taking at Santa Monica college, I couldn’t take my makeup classes online. For that reason I had to wait from March 2020 until May 2021 to start. When the day finally came over a year after I was originally set to start, I was ready. The six months at MUD gave me just what I needed, the confidence to market myself as a professional artist. I threw everything into makeup once I finally chose to go where life was pulling me. I worked hard in school and I made an effort to network outside of school. My last day at MUD was October 4th 2021 and on October 6th I completed my first day on set of a TV show as a makeup artist. Less than a week later I got my first taste of runway doing makeup for a local Salvatore Ferragamo show. This sparked my love for runway and I decided that my goal would be to make it to New York Fashion week in September of 2022. The rest of 2021 went by pretty quickly while I got a taste of many other areas of the industry including music videos, film, and beauty shoots.
The work in the first quarter of 2022 fluctuated because we were all still being heavily impacted by covid and it’s many variants. Luckily I was still able to start the year off with my first published work. I had a blast creating some memorable looks on Huddy for Paper Magazine. I also had the pleasure of doing makeup for Huddy’s cover of Galore Magazine in May. I spent the first half of the year making a massive effort to get my name out there to agencies for assisting big artists in the industry, as well as cultivating the relationships I had already made with producers, photographers, and other artists. I began assisting Rokael Lizama, of Rokael Beauty, in June. He has taught me so much about makeup artistry and the industry while bringing me onto sets for brands like Nike, Anastasia Beverly Hills and Haus Labs by Lady Gaga. While assisting Rokael I also made a point to do my own work whether it was test shoots with other artists who wanted to build their portfolio or jobs through my growing network. Throughout this I never forgot the goal I had set for myself the year before, New York Fashion Week. I emailed countless agencies, artists and brands hoping for a response. With my persistence I had booked one show, Puma with key artist Raisa Flowers, and was set to assist makeup artist Clarissa Luna as she got Lana Condor ready to attend the shows. I was already thrilled with one show and two days of assisting, but I still tried for more. While in New York I booked another two shows, Barragán with Key Artist Yadim Carranza and Laquan Smith with key artist Shieka Daley. It was such an exhilarating and inspiring week. I came back to LA with new friends and feeling extra driven to work.
I have since had the pleasure of continuing to assist multiple artists, as well as do my own work. I have continued to work with Huddy and I have also added names to my list such as Carlacia Grant from the Netflix show Outer Banks. It has been a whirlwind year since I began my career and I couldn’t have asked for a better start to the rest of my life. I am looking forward to attending New York fashion week in February and hopefully adding London, Milan and Paris as well. I am also excited to build my celebrity client list so that next year I can possibly gain my own agency representation.
If anyone reading this gets anything at all from my story I hope it’s this: sometimes life feels like it is throwing you off course into a path that you didn’t expect and it may feel like you are failing which makes us want to fight against the change, but life has a way of guiding us to the right path and what may seem off course might just be your course correction. Try leaning in and letting go of expectations, it may surprise you.
Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
Life would be boring if it were always smooth sailing. I have had some obvious struggles and some less obvious ones. covid being one of the former and my own mind being one of the latter. I have struggled with depression since I was 12 and this definitely made living in LA more challenging. One thing I do owe to my depression is the knowledge that I have to do something I love for work. I don’t have the mental capacity to work in a job I don’t love and because of this, I have followed my passions wherever they may lead. If not for following my desire to act all the way to LA, I would have never found my passion for makeup artistry. Bumps in the road sometimes push us in the right direction.
Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know about your work?
I am a makeup artist, hairstylist and groomer. I came into the beauty industry as a makeup artist and it is my specialty, but I also enjoy hairstyling for women and grooming (hair and makeup for men). I love working with makeup brands, doing runway and having private clients. Each of these sparks a different part of the artistry that I enjoy. I love being creative and pushing boundaries, but I also love just simply making people feel beautiful and confident. Confidence helps us step into the world with our best foot forward, and I love being a part of that process for others.
Are there any books, apps, podcasts or blogs that help you do your best?
I love the podcast We Speak Beauty! It was created by two amazing makeup artists, Lottie and Lindsey. They talk about all things makeup industry-related and give real insight into the field. I also draw inspiration from following artists in Instagram and I mean any kind of art whether it be makeup, photography, painting, sculpting, etc.
- Website: https://www.makeupbybexla.com/
- Instagram: https://instagram.com/bexmarie.mua?igshid=YWJhMjlhZTc=
Image 1: Huddy for Paper Magazine Makeup – Bex Marie Photographer: Markus Klinko Hairstylist: Johnny Stuntz Styling: Marta Del Rio Image 2: Huddy for Galore Magazine Makeup – Bex Marie Photographer: Jasper Soloff Hairstylist: Johnny Stuntz Stylist: Raz Martinez Image 4: Carlacia Grant Makeup – Bex Marie Hairstylist: Justine Marjan Image 6: Laquan Smith show at NYFW key artist: Sheika Daley Makeup on Sydney by Bex Marie Image 7: Hair and Makeup by Bex Marie Photographer: Kristen Wright Model: Tyra Burton Image 8: Bex Marie headshot