We had the good fortune of connecting with Hayley Kassel and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Hayley, how do you think about risk?
I personally think life is all about taking risks. My dad always told me throughout my childhood, “the things you regret the most, are the things you DIDN’T do.” I’ve taken that saying and applied it to my life/career the best I could. Moving 5 years ago from Chicago to LA without having any friends, family, connections or anything waiting for me, there was a huge risk, but I knew I had to do it. I knew it was where I was supposed to be. Lo and behold, it worked out for me, but making that leap was just the first risk of many. Once I got to LA to try and start my makeup career, every decision could be perceived as a risk. I was told by countless people how I should run my business, what style of makeup I should be doing, and how I should go about my social media. So, I took a risk, and I didn’t listen to any of them. I listened to myself instead. Go figure! I did it my way, even when it was scary to do so. I’m a firm believer in following your dreams, and in doing so, making sure you’re doing exactly what YOU want to be doing in that dream! Any person who chooses to follow their own dream instead of a beaten path knows how risky it is, but the payoff is amazing.
If you’re not loving where you are living, and fear is what’s holding you back, then make that huge move you’ve always wanted to do. Hate your job? Make a plan, organize, and pursue. Follow your gut and go after the career you’ve always wanted. Taking a risk is f*&%ing hard, but when done consciously and constructively, it can be the best decision you’ve ever made.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
My art is Makeup and Beauty Photography. I found my niche with makeup to be all about sskkkiiiinnn. No matter what look I’m doing, I really love to keep skin looking like skin. I’m not a fan of the caked on look. I strive to accentuate the natural beauty that’s already there, especially with freckles/moles and beauty marks! I don’t like to cover up something so beautiful, original, and individual.
I’m proud of the clients and brands I’ve gotten to work with and still continue to work with. But why stop there? I couldn’t resist picking up the camera and getting into beauty photography. The way it’s blossoming with my makeup is such a source of inspiration for me. But we should never forget, work is still work. Getting here wasn’t easy, and staying isn’t easy either. That’s why it’s rewarding. This industry is a rollercoaster, especially during these unprecedented times. You have to have that tunnel vision. You have to just keep pushing to get through every wall someone puts in front of you, and especially to push through the walls we put in front ourselves.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Not many places to go to at this moment, lol, but there is an awesome cafe in West Hollywood which is my go-to for breakfast and coffee or tea drinks called Dialog Cafe. You won’t be disappointed with their Avocado Toast and Matcha Lattes!!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Honestly, I wouldn’t be where I am without the unconditional support of my best friend/boyfriend/partner Gunny Troelstrup. I know it might sound like a cliche answer, but without his invaluable help, I don’t think I would be where I am career wise. Another person who I cannot thank enough for giving me a chance and all of her love since first meeting is the QUEEN makeup artist herself, Priscilla Ono. She’s how I got connected with Fenty Beauty and opened up so many more doors. I truly cannot say enough about what a kind, talented, and loving person she is. Honestly, I have a handful of amazing people that I’ve met the last couple years who keep my spirits up and are some of the most genuine, supportive, and inspirational people I’ve ever met. Just to name a few Kasha, Lauren, Jasmine, Ellie, Erik, Casey, Rio, Yuichi, Ayano, Emilyn, Rachel, you guys hold me down. Thank you for everything.