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Friday, April 24, 2009

MOVERS AND SHAKERS: Renee Smith, National Make-up Artist/East coast Bare Escentuals

Renee Lynn Smith went to college at Suny New Paltz where she received a BA in Theatre Arts with a concentration in Performance. In college she focused on performing but she always had a strong passion for make-up. She worked on several projects, designing the make-up for children's shows and would assist with make-up and hair on other projects. Renee always had a love for make-up and earned her cosmetology license when she was in High school. She always put make-up on the back burner because she really wanted to pursue a career in acting.

In February 1999 Renee moved to NYC to pursue the glamorous life of a NYC actress; needless to say she was a waitress full time! As she went on auditions and was part of Curtain Call Theatre Company, Renee started meeting actresses that needed make-up up done for their head shots. So she started volunteering her services to her friends. Renee started working at a theme restaurant in Times Square in the year 2000. She did some acting with her theatre company but was getting frustrated with all the rejection and constant cattle calls. She made a promise to herself that she would not wait tables after the age of 30. As the years went by and she was still waiting tables she was losing hope on her acting career and was really struggling with what she was going to do with her life.

A friend of hers that she worked with at the Restaurant new that she did make-up and handed her an ad. It said that Bare Escentuals was looking for a make-up artist. At that time Renee had some pictures in her portfolio so she went an applied for the job! Renee opened the Bare Escentuals store on Third Ave between 66th and 67th st. She started as beauty associate, part time, Renee remembers her first sale was over $400! She was so excited. Renee met so many different women and she was doing so many make-up applications. She never heard of Bare Escentuals before working there and wish she had known about it growing up. The products were amazing! They had so many different colors and the foundation was good for your skin, gave great coverage, and you couldn't even feel that you were even wearing any make-up!
Renee still continued to wait tables and work at Bare Escentuals. Renee made several contacts and started booking a lot of weddings. At that time Bare Escentuals did not have an artistry team. So when there was an event Renee would volunteer. She got her work and name known in the company.

Bare Escentuals finally was getting together an artistry team so Renee applied for the regional artist position. She got the position 1 month before her 30th birthday and her last day of waiting tables was 3 days before her 30th birthday!!!

Renee worked as a regional artist for a year and then got promoted to a National Artist. Renee travel's the world with BE making women look and feel better about themselves. Renee loves her job, it is so rewarding!

When Renee is not traveling for BE, she does freelance make-up on the side. She works with several different photographer's. She does weddings, commercials, photo shoots, and special events make-up as well. It took her a while to figure out what exactly she was going to do with her life. They always say "Everything happens for a Reason" and for Renee that is so true. Everything finally fell into place. Renee couldn't be happier! Even though Renee's acting career did not go as planned working for Bare Escentuals has made her life so much happier and has allowed her to work on her one woman show on the side. Stay tuned......

Peachy Deegan interviewed Renee Smith for Whom You Know.

Peachy Deegan: What is the best part of doing children's makeup?
Renee Smith: The best part of doing children's make-up is how excited and open they are to your ideas. They really love turning into their character's physically.

Would you like to play a role in television or film of a makeup artist?
I would love to be able to combine both of my talents into one. That would be the icing on the cake!

What do you like doing the most on someone in terms of makeup?
When doing make-up I really enjoy enhancing women's natural beauty. I come in contact with so many women that are so hard on themselves. I always tell women they are their worst critics. I really enjoy making women look their best, and have them work with what they have.

What makeup mistakes are the most common?
The biggest mistake that women make, is applying way to much make up. Less is more!!!

What kind of primer do you think is the best?
Well I am a little biased, so I would definitely say Bare Escentuals bareVitamins Prime Time Face Primer. It's preservative, oil and fragrance free. It goes on silky smooth and makes the skin feel so amazing. It also prepares the skin for a flawless finish.

When do you think women should start using concealer?
I don't think that there is a particular age that women should start using concealer. I think when you feel that you need a little extra coverage whether you have dark under eye circles or blemishes or acne, that's when. Whatever you need to make yourself feel more confident. I do however recommend using an eye crème at the age of 25. That is the first area to start aging and you want to keep that are hydrated and smooth.

What makes Manhattan women unique in terms of makeup (-as you are a national artist you see people from across the country although you are based in Manhattan)?
Women in NY take really good care of them selves. They enjoy putting on make-up, keeping up with the trends and are always trying to look their best.

What is your favorite place to be in NYC?
One of my favorite places in NYC would have to be central park. It is such a beautiful place with so much to see and explore. It's probably one of the most relaxing places in NYC.

What is your favorite shop?
My favorite shop would have to be Crumbs bakery! Yum!

What is your favorite drink?
On an everyday basis, I love good old H2O and lemon, if I want to spice it up, I love Grey Goose and OJ.

What is your favorite restaurant?
One of my favorite restaurants is Red. It's located at the South Street Seaport. They have the best Mexican food, and amazing margarita's. It's such a beautiful area to go to especially when it's nice out.

What is your favorite NYC book?
I would have to go with Zagat. You can find the most amazing hidden treasures in this book. Whether it's a new found place to eat or the next happening spot to hang out.

What is your favorite thing to do in NYC that you can do no where else?
I would have to say that you can go any where in NYC and have a new cultural experience by sometimes even walking only a couple of blocks.

What do you think is most underrated and overrated here?
I think that the outer boroughs are underrated, especially Queens, and I think that the price you pay for rent in Manhattan is way overrated.

What else should Whom You Know readers know about you?
That even though I love doing make-up and behind the scenes work, I love to be in the spot light too. I love getting my make-up done as well. I also really love to not only make people look amazing, I also love to make people laugh...and I am single.

How would you like to be contacted by Whom You Know readers?
Whom You Know readers can always email me at

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