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From Makeup Enthusiast To Professional Makeup Artist & Beyond – Interview With Jillian Babcock

Hi, my name is Jillian Babcock. I live in New Jersey with my husband, three young children, and a French Bulldog named Dunkin. I have been a beauty junkie since a very young age, and it has only strengthened over time. It is safe to say I have a problem, but at least I can admit it...those are the first steps I hear.


I used to love watching my mom getting ready every day. It was all so glamorous. When it was time to decide what to do after graduation, I knew I wanted to attend beauty school. My parents, on the other hand, disagreed with that idea. They thought my love for makeup was just a phase and that I would regret not attending college. Boy, were they wrong.


It was a struggle for me to choose a major when all I wanted to do was makeup, but I had to, so criminal justice was the first thing that came to mind. What, you never heard of a makeup artist police officer before? Yeah, me, either. After a few years in college, I soon realized I could not be a police officer. I didn't think my 5-foot 105-pound frame would do me any good in breaking up a bar fight at the local biker club. And so the journey began...


I switched gears and added Paralegal Studies to my major. That was a big mistake. I thought maybe if I'm not a police officer I could be like one of those trial lawyers I used to watch on Law and Order. Wrong again. The reality turned out to be completely different from what I had imagined. My work failed to spark any interest in me. Instead of drafting legal documents, I found myself searching for makeup tips and products online, daydreaming about becoming a makeup artist. It was a dull and repetitive routine that left me feeling unfulfilled and dissatisfied. The law firm I worked for still relied on outdated systems like typewriters and the Dewey decimal system to manage their clients despite the fact it was 2006. Can you imagine a creative person like me dealing with that? It was maddening. I knew that I had to make a significant change and resign from my job.

photo of Jillian Babcock

Jillian Babcock, Professional Makeup Artist


What inspired you to start Makeup By Jillian B?


It all started when I took a leap of faith, went with my gut, and applied for a part-time job at a trendy makeup counter. Now, mind you, I knew NOTHING about applying makeup on other people, but I sure wasn't going to tell them that. So what did I do? Lived by my mantra and faked it till I made it. How, you ask? That is for a whole other blog post!


I worked with that brand for almost 10 years. It taught me about makeup, people, customer service, and team leadership. It was a great experience, but I was dying to be out on my own. I booked weddings almost every weekend, then rushed to the night shift at the makeup counter. I was exhausted. The worst part was knowing I made more in those few hours than I would all week at the makeup counter. I had to make a move, but I was hesitant.


Since tying the knot with my husband, I took a giant leap and applied for an LLC for my business back in January 2015. I have been fortunate enough to work with countless brides and participate in various projects, such as 5 seasons of New York Fashion Week, commercial shoots, and editorial magazine shoots. Being entrusted to do a bride's makeup on her special day is a privilege, and I never underestimate it. Working on such important projects and milestones in people's lives is an honor, and I'm grateful for the opportunity.


What other services does Makeup By Jillian B provide besides makeup application?


In addition to doing makeup, I enjoy teaching it as well. I provide one-on-one classes both in-person and virtually, as well as group lessons and masterclasses for makeup professionals. My main goal is to ensure that my clients feel confident enough to replicate what they learned at home. The classes are tailored to suit their skill level and specific needs, so no two classes are identical. Each person receives a list of recommended products for their skin tone and a face chart with instructions before leaving.


I've recently introduced a new service called Makeup Personal Shopping to assist clients who feel overwhelmed while shopping for makeup. Many need help finding the correct shade and deciding which products to buy for their needs. That's where I come in. We have a pre-shopping consultation, so there is a plan, and we can focus when we get to the store. It's an enjoyable experience, and my clients can avoid spending money on unnecessary products that won't work for them. They won't have to exchange any makeup to find the perfect shade because we get it right the first time.


What sets Makeup By Jillian B apart from other makeup businesses in style, quality, or customer service?


I always make it a point to treat every person who comes to me as if they are my dearest friend. It's essential to me that my clients feel comfortable and relaxed. Sitting without makeup for an hour with someone you don't know can be stressful, and I completely understand that. That's why I try to alleviate some of that stress. I love listening to their stories, learning about their hobbies, and getting to know them better.


As someone who cares deeply about my client's makeup preferences, I always take the time to connect before beginning any service. I ask many questions to gain insight into any allergies, dislikes, or uncertainties they might have. I believe it's important to remember that what looks great to me may not be what the client has envisioned. To help illustrate this point to my clients, I often compare it to a meal prepared by a master chef. While they can whip up anything and make it taste incredible, not everyone will enjoy the same flavors. That's why I need to understand each client's unique preferences to provide them with the best possible experience while still achieving their desired outcome.


What is something you wish to achieve in the future of your career?


For as long as I can remember, I have been passionate about makeup and all things beauty-related. Creating my own makeup line has been a dream of mine for years, and I am driven by my love for ingredients, color theory, and product development. Through my experience of trying countless products on myself and my clients, I have gained a clear understanding of what works and what is missing in the market. This knowledge has only fueled my desire to create a line that truly caters to all the needs and desires of makeup enthusiasts but with a quality fit for professionals like myself. I revel in the process of mixing pigments and textures to create new color variations and unique products that will stand out in the saturated market. I cannot wait to share my vision with the world and see where this exciting journey takes me.


Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and visit my website for more info!

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