If you’re into makeup and active online, the name Kate Manihera may ring a few bells. The 19 year old from Auckland has made more than a name for herself in the past year shortly after launching her own business! As a huge fan of her work I decided to chat to her and bring to the table a short profile of what she’s all about. Make sure if you’re in Auckland you check her out and give her Facebook page a like too.
W: How old are you?
KM: I turned 19 on the 18th of August! So I’m still pretty young.
W: When did you start playing around with makeup?
I first started wearing makeup when I was 13. I didn’t wear a lot of it, especially for school, and for a while all I knew was Garnier bb cream, Maybelline mascara and Nivea lip balm. It was when I got to the stage of hitting the underage raves on a Friday night (LOL) that I began going further with makeup. I remember finding an old eye shadow palette at a friend’s house and creating a silver-to-black smokey eye that wasn’t actually too bad. I also remember taking a ZA foundation compact that was a few shades too dark and dragging it across my cheeks with the sponge it came with. I guess I was contouring way back then without even realising hahaha.
W: At what point did you realise you were wanting to become a makeup artist? Who encouraged/inspired you to do it?
KM: I started making YouTube videos at the beginning of 2015, purely because I loved putting makeup on myself and found the concept new and exciting. I also have a passion for editing videos so together they work hand in hand. From there, I gained more attention for my makeup and I had friends start “booking” me to do theirs. As I realised I enjoyed doing makeup on other people, and I was actually pretty good at it, I was encouraged to research all the aspects of being a MUA including products, professionalism, hygiene etc. Through both social media and word of mouth my business bloomed, and at about 8 months into last year, while still at high school, I had my own professional business. I would say my biggest motivators were my parents who pushed me into pursuing something I enjoyed and taught me a lot of the business skills I needed. They invested into me and my kit to help me get started and are my number one supporters through and through.
W: What are your three favourite makeup products you could not live without?
KM: My holy grail products are Benefit Hoola, Urban Decay All Nighter Spray and Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance palette. However if I could only wear three products for the rest of my life, I would pick Benefit Precisely My Brow Pencil, Maybelline Lash Sensational mascara and MAC Blankety lipstick!
W: What are your top spring tips for makeup trends this season?
KM: I think fresh, dewy skin and bright lips are always the go-to for Spring! I think less is more during this time of the year, and so my ultimate base combo will be MAC Face & Body foundation with my Hourglass Ambient Lighting Trio. I might try out some fake freckles this season too!
W: Did you expect to grow such a large following in such a short amount of time? How did it all happen?
Not at all, I still get confused sometimes as to why people want to be following me! Like, I’m just Kate! I think a big reason is because makeup is very on trend right now. I love how people are using makeup for creativity rather than for covering up or to impress other people, as my biggest fear in this position is that I’m broadcasting that you need makeup to be beautiful, when in reality that’s not the case at all. Beauty can’t be found in something that washes off at the end of the day, but it is instead reflected in how you treat other people. I also like to think that I have gained my following because I am my authentic self on social media. I don’t craft my Instagram posts to appear as something I’m not, which is why you’ll see that most of the pics I upload are just regular photos of me, my makeup or the people I love, with the occasional drunk selfie thrown in there too. Unfortunately, as social media is a one dimensional platform, a “highlight reel” of sorts, it can’t truly portray all aspects of an individual. This means I’m often judged from the preconceived notions as brought on by my job title or my follower count, which I struggle with at times, but at the end of the day the positives definitely outweigh these negatives. Having the follower count I do enables me to reach a large amount of people in seconds, a tool that could be useful in helping others some day.