Today I am excited to be featuring former FroChic co-blogger, Matlhodi, as part of the Women Behind The Brand feature! She is now a make-up artist at Evariam Makeup and she gives us the scoop behind her growing brand 🙂

Origins & current location?

I was born and raised in Mmametlhake, a very vibrant village in Mpumalanga and I currently live in Johannesburg.

What are you currently up to?

I’m founder and head makeup artist at Evariam Makeup; founder and blogger at bridal blog, Bride-In-Africa; an account manager for a research company and studying towards a BA Degree.

Why did you decide to go natural? Briefly take us through your natural hair journey.

For me going natural was an easy decision. It all started with a glimpse at one picture of Lauryn Hill when I was in high school and I knew then that as soon as I get that matric certificate, I was going to start growing locs. Well…it didn’t happen that way as I went on to study Somatology after high school and the word NEAT was a passcode into class at tech.

I only got to start my locs after leaving Somatology and moving on to IT. I started my own locs because I knew the exact thickness I wanted and hair salons back then only offered thinner locs; plus, I was a broke student so a hair salon was not even an option. I grew my locs to bra strap length and chopped them off four years later after giving birth to my first child. From then on, I switched between TWAs and fro’s for 9 years until last year when I decided to back to locs.

What is your hair care regimen?

I try to keep my regimen as simple as possible. I wash my locs once a month at Jabu Stone Rivonia, have them retwisted and then bury them under either braids or a curly wig. I then use the Cantu Spray to moisturize and Jamaican Black Castor Oil to base my scalp every second night (I have a very dry, itchy scalp). I’m also hoping to salvage my 8 year non-existent hairline with the castor oil.

What hairstyle(s) do you like to rock?

For now, I’m at a length where I can’t get creative with my locs and I can’t stand these starter loc plaits done in hair salons; so I’ll stick to braids and wigs until get to my ideal length. I have this go-to curly wig but currently rocking box braids done with Marley Hair. I love using Marley hair for braids because it’s not glossy, which complements the locs.

Tell us briefly about the story behind the Evariam Makeup brand. What inspired the idea and where did it all start?

I’ve always loved the idea of transforming people’s appearance, particularly the face. My love for beauty started when I was 15. Back in high school, I used to torture my classmates’ eyebrows with tweezers during lunch breaks and was quite good at it…the final look that is, not sure about the gruesome plucking technique. I started seeing black makeup artists like Faith Seoue credited in magazines and my career decision became very clear. Despite the detouring into “a more stable course with a potentially lucrative income”, the rest as they say is history.

I remember giving up on this dream of becoming a successful makeup artist after doing a few brides’ makeup because it felt like too much effort with too little returns. 6 years later, I woke up one morning to a booking in my inbox and thought that couldn’t be random. I’ve been getting booking after booking since and couldn’t be happier. I decided to position my makeup business as a bigger brand than just Matlhodi; my plan is to employ and develop as many youngsters as possible as the business grows.

Do you have a family? How do you manage to juggle everything and still keep the work and family life balance?

I try to prioritise what’s important; which is family, studies, (work and business)…in that order. My social life has taken a knock as well but I’m lucky in that I have friends that are equally busy and understand that sometimes a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do to build towards a great future. You have to plan your life months ahead to ensure you accommodate all these roles without going mental.

Are there any other projects you are currently working on?

Yes, there are. I’m working on a very exciting project with a close friend of mine but I’d rather not disclose until it takes off. All I can say it that South Africa’s “woke” youth must get ready for this one.

What tips or advice can you give to someone who wants to start their own business?

Clichéd but I’ll say it anyway – Just start! Start with what and who you have. Shut down all those voices that tend to plant doubt and dim your confidence. Work on your take-off plan EVERYDAY. Never be ashamed to ask for help from those who believe in you.

If you could advice your 20-year-old self about ‘life’ what would you say to her?

Follow your dreams and never let anyone talk you in self-doubt. You CAN actually make money out of talent and enough focus. Don’t let your not-so-polished English vocabulary stop you from pursuing your dreams and knocking on doors. Always listen to that inner voice. Not everyone will understand and support your life decisions and that’s ok.

Where can the FroChic readers get a hold of you if they want to book your services?

I have a booking option on my website; Evariam Makeup on Facebook and @evariam_makeup on Instagram. All these platforms have booking options.

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