Makeup makes people beautiful. Some people want to highlight their beauty through makeup, while others do it to hide their shortcomings. Makeup artists are people who fulfill people's desires like fairy godmothers. They find their happiness by doing makeup for people.One of them is makeup artist Woo Hyun-jeung. She is a famous makeup artist in Korea, who is in charge of many people's makeup. People admire the magical moments when a person's face shines 200 percent more when touched by her skills.She introduced her own makeup to people through manytelevision programs and also helped promote so-called "Korean Beauty" to other countries. Let's listen to her story!
Hello, Woo Hyun-jeung! Please introduce yourself!
Hello! I'm makeup artist Woo Hyun-jeung. I am currently the representative of Merci Beauty House. Nice to meet you, Chung-Ang University students!
Since when did you want to become a makeup artist?
I think I became interested in makeup when I was in my third year of college. Since the third yearis the time for students to think about what they will do in the future, I started thinking about what I could do well. I decided to become a makeup artist when I was a senior. Now that I think about it, I think my mother's advice was especially important for me to decide what to be. While I was struggling with getting my job, my mother said she saw the person sitting next to her no the subway reading a newspaper article about a makeup artist. So she took courage from the person next to her, brought the newspaper, and discussed it with me in the evening. With her courage, I was able to think about my dream a little more seriously and build up my efforts for it step by step.
We heard that you majored in Western Painting at Chung-ang University. We were curioushow your major helped you to become a makeup artist.
In the Western Painting Department of Chung-Ang University, students study watercolors, oil paintings, acrylics, and engravings. Not only that, we also learn about art that they can do with computers, such as 3d graphics and photoshop. Because of what I learned in college, I think I gained confidence in colors. When you do makeup, it's really important to harmonize the colors.
When you said you wanted to become a makeup artist while majoring in art, didn't your colleaguesobject? If so, how did you overcome it?
In fact, so many of my colleagues worried about me. In particular, my seniors in the same major recommended me to study abroad or go to graduate school. In fact, a lot of students did those things at that time. But I couldn't help but consider my family’s financial matters. Unlike other friends of mine, my father died when I was very young, so my situation was getting worse. So rather than doing what I wanted to do, I decided to take responsibility for my family and take care of them. My friends who I met while preparing to becomea makeup artist often advised me to paint again. Back then, I didn't want to make my situation known, so I just glossed over it. So even after I chose my job, I had a hard time because of my inferiority complex and sadness. But by the time my name became known as a makeup artist, people who opposed me at the time started cheering for me. And thanks to that support, I worked even harder as an artist.
If you couldn't learn about makeup directly at school, how did you study makeup?
I went to private academy first to learn makeup properly and I learned the basics there. I wanted to work at Cheongdam-dong, known as the Mecca of Makeup, so I completed an academy course created by Jung Saem-mool, a famous makeup artist. But I realized that the theory and practice are very different. Rather than simply follow the theories written in the book, I was able to create and use my own skills in the field, and my experience there helped me take steps forward as a real artist.
You are the head of Beauty House Merci. Is there any meaning in the name Merci?
Merci means “thank you” in French. While studying makeup for a long time, and working as a makeup artist, there were a lot of people I was thankful for. And now that I look back on the past, the hard times that I had at that time have become a big asset to me now. So I came up with a company name to thank all the customers who came to my shop trusted me to give them a makeover.
There are many hair and makeup shops, and what do you think is the biggest reason why Merci was successful (or what is Merci's competitive edge)?
Among the things I felt while working at various shops in Cheongdam-dong for a long time was the focus on weddings. Especially during the peak season, I was so busy that I couldn't focus on each of the brides I was in charge of. Also, the bride and groom would be more sensitive and careful on theirwedding day, and I wanted to give them more perfect care. So, Merci has some different services than other shops. First of all, Merci sticks to a thorough pre-booking method. And there's only a small number of teams that can be ready for the wedding. And on the day of the ceremony, we're trying to understand the sensitive minds and desires of the brides, so that they enjoy more privacy in their own rooms while having their makeup done. We’re trying to match the mood and condition of the bride and groom as much as we can. But above all else, the constant feedback from all the artists and staff is a big feature of Merci. We check the problem of the last wedding and try hard to make the next one better.
What was the most difficult moment as a makeup artist and CEO of Merci? We also want to know how you overcame it.
I think I had the hardest time when I started learning to work until my mid-thirties. When I was in my 20s, it was the hardest thing to just adjust to my job. As everyone knows, service jobs are very hard. I tried hard to have themindset ofa makeup artist, and it was very hard for me. When I was in my 30s, I had too much work to do that I had a lot of tough times. I realized the importance of getting a rest through the hard experiences of those days. Since I was physically tired, I had a many negative and skeptical thoughts about my job. To overcome those negative thoughts, I took a break and spenta lot of time with my family. I also controlled my pace by giving myself a few breaks a month.
What do you think is the prejudice or misunderstanding that the public has about your job as a makeup artist?
People think that makeup artist is a very fancy job because they're usually work with celebrities. But being makeup artist is just a job, and we work like everyone else. The work itself isn't that different. And there are often people who think that being a makeup artist is easy and that we get a lot of money. However, both effort and skill are required because makeup artists need to be certified, and should have the expertise to have their own skills. Also, because of the feature of our job, we usually work early in the morning. We don't have a free schedule. Makeup artists are physically very difficult jobs, unlike what many people think.
You're in charge of a lot of artists, but who's your muse?
I think Ko So-young and Im Soo-jung are my muses. We're not working together now, but we were able to study a lot when we were working together. They're very meaningful to me and I really appreciate them.Actress Ko So-youngwas a Chung-Ang University student, as you know. When I was in school, she was a famous actor, and only ever saw her from a distance. Then when I was 31, she came to my shop on someone's recommendation. I was excited and nervous when I putmakeup on her, and fortunately she liked the clean makeup I did for her. We've been together for a long time ever since and I also did her wedding makeup. She told me exactly what she likes and dislikes about her makeup. Her honesty has helped me develop, and my attitude toward makeup and my overall personality has changed a lot. Im Soo-jung came to the salon when I was 29 years old to promote the movie "A Tale of Two Sisters." After that, we met again with the drama 'I am Sorry, I Love You' and we have beentogether for a long time. She looks very young for her age, so she's one of the most suitable people for my makeup. I thought they were my muses while working with them, and I think I learned more aboutmakeup working on them.
What part of your makeup do you think is most important?
I have a special philosophy about skin. Each person's features are full of charm. So I focus a lot on skin expressions that show off the charm of a person.I basically don't think it's good to cover your skin too much with foundation. Of course, I do make-up for allskin types, but I try to make it as light and clear as possible. Since I have studied material science, I analyze the concentration of foundation using the knowledge I learned. That's why I put on makeup so that it fits well with the customer's skin and doesn't feel too much.
What is the most satisfactory and responsive makeup you have ever done? We also wonder why.
The watery makeup that I did for actress Go Hyun-jung and the classic makeup that I did for actress Seo ye-ji were the biggest hits. In particular, Go's makeup helpedme gain a lot of recognition. I tried not to use many color cosmetics on her face and didn't even draw her eyeliner. Instead, I did clean skin care and eye makeup and didn’t use red lipsticks. It made her look younger by making her look clearer. It was an innovative way of doing makeup those days. In the case of Seo Ye-ji, I tried to change heroverall image gracefully.So, I used a more restrained and neat colorson her. After this, many people started to askwhat kind of cosmetics we used at the shop.
How do you cope with situations when your customer's makeup and your opinion conflict? Do you usually accept customer feedback?
It's actually very difficult to decide. In the past, artists used to do makeup under the leadership of an artist, and it became a trend to follow the needs of customers. However, I try to consult with the customer as much as I can to coordinate with their opinions. The client's opinion is very important and I would not oppose that, but most of all, the results are the most important. Most customers come to my shop to appear on television or to shoot commercials, and I try to do their makeup keeping in mind the lighting they’ll be under.I consult with a photographer who takes pictures to help convince my client of my judgment.
Who is the most memorable non-celebrity guest you've ever put on makeup for?
A long time ago, a bride came to get her wedding makeup, and there was a huge blot on her face. It was big enough to cover her face. So to get rid of the big spot, I focused on the base and covered it perfectly. I remember crying with the bride and groom after the makeup.At that time, the groom said he was grateful that he could see his wife's eyes through makeup, because he had not been able to see both of her eyes in the past. I felt more rewarded and satisfied with my work because of that memory.
What does makeup mean to you?
For me, makeup is a medium that makes me feel alive. When I put on makeup, I feel like I'm coming out with a lot of creative ideas hidden inside of me. I think I love makeup because I can express those ideas.
Please introduce the 2020 makeup trend for students from Chung-Ang University who are entering this year.
The makeup trend for 2020 is 'Natural Glow.' More than anything else, it's important to bring out the glow your skin naturally has. So, using pearl primer after base makeup can also look trendy. For color makeup, it is recommended to use some monochrome blush in harmony with the eyeshadow. Monochrome is a color with a vague borderline between blush and eyeshadow. It's important to make similar colors look silky on your eyelids and cheeks. Red Blossom is especially popular these days, so make sure to use red. Also, because Bohemian style is in vogue, I recommend that people with freckles not try to cover themall up, but to emphasize naturalness by simply lightening their makeup.
Are there any classes or professors you most remember? Or do you have any other favorite memories from Chung-Ang University?
Professor Ahn Byeong-seok and Professor Kim Kyo-man are the most memorable to me. Professor Ahn Byeong-seok taught me about applied painting with numerous materials, and Professor Kim Kyo-man taught me a variety of methods about color representation in Western painting. Now that I think about them, I think it's true that learning lasts forever. Now that I'm a makeup artist, I'm applying what I've learned from these professors.
If you could go back to Chung-Ang University, what would you like to do most?
Actually, I think I did everything I wanted to do when I was in school. At that time, I was the head of the department, I was the head cheerleader, so I tried everything I wanted to do. If I had to find something I missed, I would have studied harder. I especially think I should have studied computer graphics more.
What is your goal you want to get from your job?
I'm proud to announce a lot of K-beauty. So I want to promote K-beauty more and I think it's something I should do. And I will try to grow my beauty brand and Merci, too.
Please say a few words to young college students who want to go the same way, and to those who are reading this article from Chung-Ang University.
Not only me, but all the students at Chung-Ang University have carved out many paths with their versatility. So, if you have an area that you're interested in, I think it's more important to confront it head on than to just keep worrying about it. So, I recommend you to try anything. Not only me, but sincere and challenging people ends up on the path to success. I hope you to challenge yourself until your blurry future becomes clear. I'm rooting forall of you!
Woo Hyun-jeungis such a beautiful pioneer. She is a makeup artist who highlights the beauty that already exists, and while showing it transparently rather than covering up the unique beauty of each person beyond the mark, she never forgets what customers really want. Woo Hyun-jeung, who has been in charge of the makeup of top actresses for years, is also serving as the CEO Merci and is a "Celebrity Beauty mentor."Every minute of beauty trends are changing in Korea, and so-called "hot" and "hip" beauty salons are also sprouting up all over. The fact that she has long been in charge of the faces of actresses who have to show the most beautiful aspects in this endlesscompetition market is huge mark of pride in itself.CAH is looking forward to her accomplishing her goals.< 저작권자 © 중앙헤럴드 무단전재 및 재배포금지 >