When Celeb makeup artist Ariel Tejada (who's painted the faces of Kylie Jenner & Kim K) discovered Naked Sundays, he was eager to head Down Under to help us celebrate "Naked Sundays International SPF Top Up Day"!
A "pinch me" moment!
So we asked him a few pressing questions during his whirlwind trip;
NS: What made you gravitate towards Naked Sundays?
Ariel: The Naked Sundays products are a league of their own! As a makeup artist, skin prep is such a crucial step and that includes protecting the skin from sun damage.
NS: How important is Sunscreen re-application?
Ariel: I love that the SPF Glow Mist can be applied over the top of makeup, not once but multiple times, encouraging people to reapply which is so important. The SPF Glow Balms are also genius - SPF with sheer color that can be used on the eyes, lips and cheeks which is great for someone wanting a no makeup, makeup glowy look & you all know I love!
NS: You are only 27 years old you are one of the most prolific makeup artists, if not the #1 in the world. How did you get your start?
Ariel: I always wanted to be a singer when I was little. I had a really strong passion for anything artistic whether it was music, or baking. I would watch my mum, she was so good at makeup with her little sponge and I was so mesmerized. I grew up in a very religious household so I kind of hid that part of me for a while. I would still play with makeup in secrecy. One day I told my cousins I would practice on them and I would just play around. I always knew if I was going to do something I was never going to be mediocre at it. In terms of makeup, I found this love for it I would wake up in the morning and get so excited.
I signed on to this website called Model Mayhem and at the time it was a website where you connected with photographers - it was like a Facebook for photographers and models and MUA, stylists and you all do treatments for posts or your portfolio.
A couple of months later I worked with a friend of mine now, Lily Ghalichi, who had a lash line called Lilylashes. She gave so much exposure and was so sweet. I was getting so much exposure from her that 6 months later after that, I did Kylie’s makeup for the first time after she DM’ed me on Instagram.
NS: Kylie Jenner DM’d you?
A: Yes, Kylie did. She messaged me on Instagram in 2015 and I had actually gone back home to New York after doing Lily’s makeup in LA. And I thought it was a joke because at the time she had a black circle as her profile picture! I responded like 14 minutes later and I thought I was late - like I missed the chance. So I hit her up that I was in LA the following week - which I wasn’t. I didn’t have a flight booked, I was so broke. I come from a really humble Dominican Republic family. It makes me tear up thinking about it but I am so grateful beyond belief to have this energy through me and reach so many people through my art. That is also such a personal thing for me.
NS: We are all speechless and also really appreciative of you sharing your personal story with us, thank you. I did want to mention that point, okay so you get to Kylie Jenner’s house, but now you have got to perform, you have got to do their makeup & so that is your talent that they recognise.
Ariel: It is the same concept behind Naked Sundays and the same energy that I want to carry when I create my makeup line … your product should speak for itself, you don’t have to go on and talk to everyone and try to convince them your product is good, if your product is good.
Had you not had a good product with Naked Sundays, then it doesn’t matter how someone speaks about it. I say no to 97% of the brands deals that are brought in my direction, it’s very few things that I say yes to, because I care too much about the consumer, I care too much about does this really work with my brand and what I represent, am I really going to go on here and half ass something just to make a coin. Something else will come, another blessing will come my way.
Your Naked Sundays products speak for themselves - that’s what is incredible. That’s the same thing when it comes to talent. If your talent speaks for you, that’s just what it is.
NS: So I want to talk about your talent, because it is absolutely incredible, and you’re right, its not the vessels, it’s what you do it’s your talent. Where does your inspiration come from? You’re self taught. Do you come to them and say this is how I want you to look, do they come to you, how does that all work? And how are you so good at what you do?
Ariel: It is such a collaborative thing. I am so blessed to be working with the people I work with and the energy that we all have together as a glam family is so special. We take it really seriously; every little hair matters, every lash whether it’s thick or small, the placement of mascara. With Kylie, literally we sit down for hours on end and it could be the simplest look but we take it so seriously because we love it. And it’s a collaborative team effort it’s never a one person thing.
NS: Sunscreen is so important and I know I’ve heard you say that, and it is hard to wear sunscreen with makeup, what’s your philosophy? I mean, you guys have full faces of makeup, your people that you do, they’re outside, do you think about that? Is that something you are concerned about?
Ariel: When we’re doing shoots at the beach, we just recently did one, I do think about that a lot because we’re usually under the shade waiting for them to finish the shot, but they’re in the heat the sun is like beaming on them so we always use sunscreen. But yes, once the makeup is on and we’re shooting for hours in the sun, they have no more protection. The Naked Sundays products are so innovative and amazing - when shooting outdoors or at the beach, having a spray / mist like Naked Sundays and knowing you are covered for the rest of your shoot or can top up, is incredible.