Howard Magazine - Page 28 - Makeup Maven

Howard Magazine
- Page 28
Makeup Maven
5 looks by an Ellicott City-based celebrity makeup artist

By John-John Williams IV Howard Magazine

Photos By Kenneth K. Lam

She’s perfected the makeup looks for celebrities such as Aretha Franklin, Ava DuVernay, Misty Copeland, Tracee Ellis Ross and Chris Tucker. She helped to launch Queen Latifah’s makeup line in 2006 and worked with her for three years. She oversaw the makeup for the Miss USA pageant in 2006. And she’s done it all while living in Ellicott City.

Maeion Bryant’s rise as a celebrity makeup artist actually started as a model in her native Seattle in the early 1980s. From there she worked at makeup counters at Nordstrom and Neiman Marcus while taking gigs with advertising agencies and various publications. “I started enjoying working more behind the scenes,” she says.

She moved to Maryland with her husband in 1985, and she quickly built a network in the area, landing celebrity clients primarily through word of mouth.

“Most of my clients are from referrals,” the statuesque 60-year-old explains. “That’s what happened with Aretha. She was here [Baltimore] in 2011. A friend of mine referred me for the job.”

It was also word of mouth that led Covergirl to hire her to oversee the makeup artists for the 2006 Miss America pageant.

“That was interesting,” she says as her head full of box braids bounces with each giggle. “That’s all I can say.”

Procter & Gamble connected her with Queen Latifah the same year to help brand the entertainer’s makeup collection. “I was in charge of making sure it was in the public eye,” Bryant recalls.

Three years ago Bryant launched Mobile Beauty Connections, an MTA service bus-sized mobile unit that she brings to everything from sweet 16 birthday parties to weddings. The vehicle, which is equipped with a television and refrigerator, can fit up to eight people.

“It was something that my clients wanted. They thought it would be great for me just to come to their door,” she says.

This fall and winter, Bryant recommends experimenting with retro-inspired eyes, metallic shimmer and even Swarovski crystals.

For these five looks, she used the same airbrushed foundation — MAC Prep + Prime 24-hour Extend eye base and contoured with BH Cosmetics Studio Pro Palette. She used MAC concealer under the eyes, and eyebrows were done with I Envy by Kiss all-in-one brow pomade.