LEARNING CURVE | No face too famous for artist Nyoka

KwaNobuhle businesswoman cites doing ‘Bold and the Beautiful’ character Brooke Logan’s makeup as a career highlight

Makeup artist and businesswoman Amanda Nyoka attends to a client in Summerstrand
Makeup artist and businesswoman Amanda Nyoka attends to a client in Summerstrand
Image: Werner Hills

Not many South African makeup artists can say they have done Brooke Logan’s makeup.

Well, that is exactly what KwaNobuhle businesswoman Amanda Nyoka got to do when

The Bold and the Beautiful star Katherine Kelly Lang visited Nelson Mandela Bay in 2018 to compete in the Ironman 70.3 World Championships.

That remains one of Nyoka’s career highlights.

Please share some background on yourself and how the business was started?

I am a self-taught makeup artist who was born in Uitenhage and grew up in Addo.

I studied marketing at EastCape Midlands College and filming at Feline Technology.

I was one of the makeup artists on season three of reality show Diski Divas, which aired on Mzansi Magic.

What is your core service?

In October 2018, I launched my skincare range, Amish Healthy Skin, and I facilitate beauty sessions, teaching women how to beautify themselves.

I specialise in makeup, hairstyling, nails and wardrobe styling for TV, weddings, functions and special occasions.

Where was the idea born?

It all started in 2013, when I volunteered at Bay TV in the makeup department.

A year later, I started my own beauty business called Amish Beauty and Glam.

I started doing makeup for celebrities such as Zandile Khumalo, Busiswa, Zahara, Deborah Fraser, Berita and many others who have graced the shores of the metro.

What makes your business unique?

It is unique in the sense that each year I set a goal to work with a big brand, celebrity or a production.

It helps a lot because my name is constantly floating around influential people, which often leads to more job opportunities for me.

What are some of the biggest challenges in your industry?

Touching people’s skin. People are very sensitive about their skin. They ask a lot of questions in terms of the brands you use, the instruments, so juggling personalities is also a major factor because sometimes the vision does not align.

It’s always important to ask your client what their vision is. Others need your services, but they do not really trust you.

Another challenge is when you have to put on makeup for old African men, especially for TV, as some might view makeup as a women-only essential.

Another challenge I often come across is clients who want me to make them look lighter than their actual skin.

Balance is key as no makeup artist wants a hand looking 10 shades darker than the face.

What is the best advice anyone gave you on success?

The best advice I got when I was starting my business was “make noise and never lose focus”. So far that has helped my brand a lot, and it is growing.

What kind of advertising do you do?

I use social media a lot.

What is your target market?

Anyone between four and 50 years old. I have developed my business and include facepainting for children.

How important is social media and an online presence for your business?

Social media is very important because that is my salon, that’s where I showcase my work.

That is where I get most of my clients. Social media groomed me and it played a huge role in my growth.

Do you have any tips for budding entrepreneurs? Polish your skill first so that when you have a client sitting in your makeup chair, you deliver good quality, which will always bring them back and they will possibly recommend you to their friends or colleagues. Embrace mistakes as an opportunity to learn.

Be best friends with YouTube in order to learn new makeup trends.

I always have a Bible verse I believe in and live by to motivate myself when the work gets tough or when business is slow.

Lastly, separate your business from your personal money because growth is very important and it is too easy when times are tough at home to dig into your business funds.

What are some of the best practices that have made your business successful?

Being in the media industry played a huge role in my business, and having a good and welcoming personality.

Being punctual and professional, I humble myself to each and every client.

There are things you have to stop doing when you’re building a brand. I’m very creative and I go the extra mile to make my clients happy.

For example, for my bridesto-be I always do their doeks for free. I make sure that I leave a special mark for every occasion I’m hired to do because you have to leave every job on a good note.

Word of mouth is key because, however it may look, the Nelson Mandela Bay social circle is quite small and people talk.

Leaving a good impression is key and leads to recurring business.