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BBC’s Glow Up and working with Rankin: My life as a makeup artist

Eve Jenkins, 23, is a make-up artist living and working in Liverpool. She made it to the final three of BBC Three's Glow Up presented by Stacey Dooley.

I have been a makeup artist for 10 years. It’s crazy! I started off on photoshoots and it was always very natural makeup back then, now makeup is on another level, I would never be able to do that skill level at that age.

I always wanted to be a makeup artist. My dad took me to a two-day makeup course with So Coco Rouge and the girls who owned it took me under their wings. They took me on jobs assisting and I learnt mainly on the job, it’s the best way to learn.

I did go to college to gain my certificate so I could work and get insured independently, but honestly, I didn’t learn much it was terrible! I class myself as self-taught.

Picture: Instagram

What do I love about my job

I love having a social job, I love chatting to all my clients and making them feel beautiful. I also love never doing the same thing from one day to the next. I work in a salon but I also do shoot work which breaks things up and lets me get more creative.

My style

My favourite style of makeup is a mix of creative and glam. I usually do this style on my Instagram it’s my own space to create whatever I want.

My signature style is big lashes and a matte nude lip, never glossy.

Picture: Instagram


Anything can inspire me at any time. I like to keep a little notebook where I wrote down ideas as they pop into my head. I try not to focus on other people, I don’t think it’s healthy to compare yourself to others. There are a million talented MUAs that I follow on Instagram, but you have to find your own style so it’s important to look at non-makeup things for inspiration rather than just people, you know?

Entering Glow Up

I just applied and I didn’t ever think I would get on the show. One thing led to another and here we are! Best decision I ever made.

I was surprised how little normal makeup there was. We don’t get the makeup kits to practice with.

Some lived in London so could go home but I had to try and practice with my tiny daily makeup bag. So I am surprised that I managed to do any of the creative brief looks, they were so out of my comfort zone, I’ve never done anything like that before. I really pushed myself and, although they didn’t go to plan most of the time, I didn’t take the easy option and I am very proud.

Picture: Instagram

What I learnt about myself

I felt a bit embarrassed to be a glam Instagram makeup artist because industry makeup artists tend to look down on that style of makeup. I tried to do what I thought they wanted which made everything harder.

After I left and I had time to reflect, I feel proud to be a glam artist. I’m never going to feel ashamed or embarrassed I’m going to own it.

Strictly and Rankin

Strictly was amazing! To stand on the stage and see everything backstage was so much fun. I was so ill at the time I had a blanket and had to nap in-between filming, and I finally got the opportunity to do some semi-normal makeup.

The Rankin shoot was the best day I think of my life! I had struggled so much because I never had the opportunity to do beauty makeup, and I’m glad I made it long enough to show the judges what I am good at.

It reminded me of the saying ‘If you judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree’. I was in a makeup competition but it was full of arty crazy makeup, that’s not what I do, that’s not what I’m good at. That day meant a lot to me.

Eve’s Rankin shoot picture: Instagram

Life after the show

I think nowadays people think that if you are on TV you’re famous and have all these opportunities flooding in. That’s not the case my life is the same nothing has changed physically.

But what is different is my confidence, I have found my own makeup style and I love it! I know who I am as an artist and I know who I am as a person, not everyone’s cup of tea.

My advice

Never compare yourself to others, I know it’s hard with Instagram, but try to appreciate someone’s talent without comparing them. I have been doing makeup for 10 years and there are people a lot better who have been doing it a lot less time than me. I always tell myself that I’m progressing at my own pace I will get there one day, but it’s not a race and there is room for everyone. Stay in your own lane, do your own thing, in your own time.

Follow Eve Jenkins at Instagram at @EvejenkinsMUA and @evejenkinsmuapro

Charlotte Harding
Charlotte Harding
Charlotte is a journalist and the co-founder of The Women's Work Collective.


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