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Rising Stars: Meet Dena Dawson

Today we’d like to introduce you to Dena Dawson.

Hi Dena, we’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
I grew up in a small rural town. I was raised by a beauty queen mom surrounded by makeup, music fashion and art. As a child, I would paint my Barbie’s nails and give my cousins makeovers. As teens, my friends and I spent hours doing our hair, putting outfits together and watching music videos. We talked about plans to leave our sleepy little town. One day I got a license and did just that. My first job in LA was in West Hollywood on Robertson. Robertson was a celebrity hotspot at the time with stores like Kitson and Ed Hardy being all the rage. I gained quite the following working at that little spa and one day just like most things in LA, it closed. I had a ton of clients without a salon to go to so I brought the salon to them and my house call business was born. Almost 15 years later, I have worked on so many amazing projects with people I could only dream of meeting.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
The ride is wild. There have been many obstacles and detours along the way but it’s all about how you choose to respond. People come and people go. That’s the nature of this city. You have to be able to adapt to that and stay humble. It’s a constant grind but the reward is beyond anything you could ever imagine. Steven Tyler once said to me “Be kind to the people you meet when you’re climbing up the ladder, you’ll meet them all again on your way down” and that’s how I try to live.

Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
I am an LA-based Entertainment Industry Nail Artist known for my work with celebrities such as Steven Tyler, Ozzy Osbourne, Megan Fox, Dave Navarro, Kat Von D and countless others. I’ve worked on music videos and tours. My work has been on the cover of countless magazines including the cover of Rolling Stone. I worked on 2 seasons of American Idol where more people saw my work than voted in the US Presidential election. I’ve worked on movie sets, tv shows and commercials. My work has been in countless fashion magazines such as Vogue and Glamour. I’ve worked runway shows for famous designers such as Lanvin. I’ve worked with famous supermodels such as Eva Herzigova and Bar Refaeli. I’ve been lucky to work with famous photographers like Peter Lindbergh. I’ve worked on projects for the Super Bowl and the World Cup. The list goes on and on. It’s hard work but if it all ended tomorrow, I can say that I’m proud of the things I’ve done and I’m grateful to have met some pretty fascinating human beings.

Any big plans?
My only current future plan is to stay alive and give as much love as I get.

Contact Info:


Image Credits

Melissa Mahoney Lionel Deluy Emma Fiel Angela Boatwright

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