Every so often I’ll interview someone who has a unique story to tell. Every so often someone is brought to my attention that shows Deafies and Touretters can do anything anyone else can do.
Meet CyEra. She’s a professional makeup artist and it’s a lifelong passion that she’s made come true! And she’s deaf.
D/T: Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
CyEra: I am from Fayetteville NC, Born and Raised. Became deaf at 2 and I’m a single mother of 2 beautiful kids (boy is 8 and girl is almost 6 in Nov). I am a makeup artist of 6 years and a blogger for 2 years. I graduated from esthetics and skin care program to become a licensed esthetician. I really love skin, ‘cause it’s a very complicated organ but it’s easy to take care of.
How did you first get into make-up?
How did I first get into make-up? Well, I was a teen, around 15 or 16, and I was watching this show about teaching people how to dress. The last part of the show was my favorite — it was makeup, how it transformed the person. Then I was in drama class for last 2 years of high school, I was doing the makeup for actors and actresses and that’s when I fell in love with makeup artistry as well as Fashion industry. It’s very tough and very fast paced.
What challenges have you faced in your profession?
Among the challenges I have faced in my profession, the communication barriers and everybody wanting to be makeup artists. It is very tough. I had to develop a tough skin because I get a lot of critiques on my work to improve my skills and techniques. My marketing skills are okay but it’s very challenging ‘cause trends are changing like every 6 months to a year. Instagram and Youtube are the most used by customers who want the same look as others. That’s what challenges me most because my skills and my technique does not always match their preference. I am more of a creative and clean beauty who cares about the skin and not putting 10 lbs of makeup on the face.
What opportunities have opened up for you in your line of work?
Fashion Shows and Photoshoots are the opportunities that have opened up for me in my line of work.
Have you suffered any discrimination because of being deaf?
Yes, I have suffered discrimination due to being deaf. It’s so hard for me to market myself to the hearing community when they know I am deaf.
Do you have deaf clients?
Yes, I do have 2 deaf clients.
What was it like growing up with your dream of being a professional MUA? Did anyone discourage you? Encourage you?
I grew up wanting to be a fashion designer and I found myself loving makeup and when I put makeup on other people and saw them glowing, I just loved it! Being a professional MUA is very challenging because trends keep changing. Yes, people have discouraged me by telling me not to focus on makeup artistry and promote other artists. They’ve told other people that other artists are way better than I. But I have friends, even several deaf people from the community, Pro MUAs and photographers, who have encouraged me and taught me a lot with advices and tips.
You are the first deaf person I’ve ever heard of working as a professional make-up artist. We know hearing people are surprised us deaf folks can do anything other than janitorial work. But Are there other deaf people who are surprised at your profession?
Yes, other Deaf People were surprised at my profession and not sure how to promote me by sharing. So many don’t know who I am.
What are your goals for the coming year?
My goals are to have my own shop in Alabama, develop my own cosmetic line, get involved in the film industry with Jade Bryan, and be part of NYFW and be able to go to London.
Before close, I have two last questions:
What advice do you have for young deaf people who may be inspired by your story?
Do not let people to tell you any different. You are your own ability! Keep failing in order to succeed!
What advice do you have for the hearing people reading your interview with us?
My advice is “Encourage Deaf People to do what they love to and do not oppress them because of your doubts of their abilities!”
We’d like to thank CyEra for taking the time to share some of her story with us and we look forward to seeing her make a huge impact in the coming year!
Also, check out her YouTube channel! The videos are captioned for the hearing!