It’s #FollowFriday and today we’re featuring a lovely lady who is giving rockstar makeovers to brides and maids all over Texas!
Kelsey Vawter is a licensed cosmetologist and stylist with over 8 years of experience. She specializes in bridal and special occasion looks, and she LOVES a good up-do!
While her styling and makeup techniques are certainly on point (for real, though, look at all these magical transformations!), what really makes Kelsey stand out is her can-do attitude and warm heart.
We had the chance to talk with Kelsey about her business, the perks and challenges of bridal styling, and how she uses her hair and makeup powers for good. Here’s what she said:
How did you start your business?
I started Styled by Kelsey V. after being an unnamed mobile stylist and working in salons for 6 years. My primary focus was to get out of the full-service salon environment and focus on what I love most: making women look and feel their best.
Did you always want to be a stylist?
Since I can remember, I was always the friend that was helping everyone get ready for homecoming, crazy hair day, and cheer competitions. I was obsessed with glitter and, for a while, blue mascara! Since then I have grown into a more natural look, preferring big wavy hair or a messy bun to bright scrunchies.
What got you into bridal styling?
Bridal styling has always been my favorite. Seeing a bride’s face after her makeover is priceless. The second best thing is her mom’s face when she sees her daughter with hair and makeup done. Transforming someone into the best version of themselves and helping them feel beautiful on their big day is incredibly fulfilling.
What’s the most challenging part of your job?
The most challenging part of my job is the consultation. Sometimes I get brides who know exactly what they want but more often I get brides who are as obsessed with Pinterest as I am. I love inspiration pins but when there are too many pins with drastically different looks, it can be hard to come up with a cohesive look for the bride and her party.
What inspired you to be a charitable vendor?
My grandmother, who lost her battle with breast cancer, is my inspiration. When she was going through chemotherapy, she rocked the bald head and scarves but hated that she “looked like an alien” with no eyebrows. The only thing she hated more than not having eyebrows was when people painted on what she called “McDonald’s arches” or used an unnatural color to recreate her missing eyebrows. She tried different brow pencils but always hated the harsh lines that they created, so most days she decided against using them.
One night, she had a wedding to go to, so I bought her a sandy brown brow powder and applied it with an angle brush. After I finished, she looked in the mirror and said she looked like a “normal person”. It was both heartbreaking and fulfilling at the same time. After that, I taught her how to use the brow powder and bought her eyebrow stencils so she could do it herself. Her comment about feeling like a “normal person” is what drove me to start giving back and helping other women feel a little better about themselves during hard times.
What do you do to give back? Are there any charities you work closely with?
I donate my time as an instructor to Look Good Feel Better, a program that offers complimentary group, individual, and online sessions that teach beauty techniques to help people with cancer to face their diagnosis with greater confidence.
I love working with the ladies, teaching them proper styling techniques to help their wigs stay in top condition, and new makeup techniques to help them look more like themselves.
I also recently interviewed with Shear Love, Thrive Rescue Home’s new cosmetology program in Thailand for trafficked women and hope to become a guest instructor there for a six-week period in early 2017. I would love to have the opportunity to participate in and support their program annually.
Any styling advice for brides-to-be?
Know your style, your hair, skin, and weather patterns on your wedding day. It’s pretty much always hot and humid in Texas so I always recommend an up-do in order to make it last the longest!
Know a wedding vendor that’s going above and beyond to help others? Leave us a comment and we might feature them next time!