We had the good fortune of connecting with Junior Mintt and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Junior, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
Risk-taking is essential to discover the pieces of yourself you didn’t know were there because there’s no risk in doing what you’re comfortable with or used to doing. Without risk-taking, I would have never left the house in clothes that make me feel affirmed as a Black Trans woman, I wouldn’t have ever gotten on a stage to perform, or started my own makeup line and believed I could make it successful! But it’s important to note that risks are much easier to take when you have a community around you that will catch you if you fall. The reason I felt confident enough to leave the house as who I am, is because the first time I had friends around me to support me, I could get on stage because my friends were cheering their heads off in the audience. It was my community that reminded me at my most hesitant, that I could truly make a makeup line. So the role that risk-taking has played in my life was ESSENTIAL! Once I stopped holding on to what I was used to doing and looked toward what I wanted to do, I truly stepped into my purpose and passion.

What should our readers know about your business?
Mintty Makeup is rooted in self-discovery, self-acceptance, and self-empowerment. Mintty Makeup was created out of a question a friend asked me in the middle of the quarantine: “What do you want to do with your career when you physically can’t perform anymore?”. It was a question I’d never been asked, and it made me realize the closeness that makeup holds to my heart because it was makeup that made me realize that I was trans. I would get so emotional at the end of nights that I’d perform when I would have to take off the makeup. I’d be so emotional because where the makeup as a drag performer was the only time I allowed myself to see myself as a woman. So with everything we create, our goal is that you get the chance to discover who you are when you put on the makeup and love yourself, even more, when you take it off. Oftentimes beauty brands want to sell you the idea that their products will help you attain a certain type of beauty that society deems beautiful, but with Mintty makeup, our goal is to give you the tools and allow you to create your own type of beauty. No matter what that beauty looks like. It’s all about allowing yourself the opportunity to transform yourself into who or whatever you want to be because how we choose to decorate our bodies is a representation of what’s in our souls. And as a beauty brand, I believe it’s about honoring that soul not trying to change that soul. If there’s one thing you walk away having learned from Mintty Makeup, let it be that: Our goal is not to change you, it’s to help you discover more parts of you! The parts that come out when you have on blush, a bright lip, or bright eye makeup. But also the appreciation you have for yourself when you take it all off because it’s ALL YOU! When I put on a neutral eye, when I paint my face green, when I go out with just blush, IT”S ALL STILL ME! So let’s discover ourselves together and uplift one another to do the same!

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
If my bestie was in town, we would be filling the weekend with drag shows, good food, and visiting some amazing sights. I’m a Brooklyn girl myself, so I would absolutely start them off by taking them to Seawolf in Bushwick off the Jefferson L for a seafood boil and amazing drinks, then head to 3 Dollar Bill in East Williamsburg for some amazing queer drag shows like “Hole Pics” by Mthr Trsa, “Night of a 1000 Gagas” by Nicky Ottav, or even my own monthly show “In Living Color” also produced by Juniper Juicy and Just June. Then we’d head home to get to bed so that we can be up to go take the ferry to Governors Island to have a picnic and rollerblade by the water. Before we head back to Brooklyn for more shows, we would stop by The Stonewall Inn so that they can experience where pride began. Once back we would get all dolled up to go to C’mon Everybody in Bed-Stuy for amazing drinks and more drag shows, from “Sister, Sister” by Dev Doee and Cherry Jaymes to Chiquitetta’s “Trans Excellence”, you’re guaranteed to have an amazing night. Then we’d probably bar hop to All Night Skates to catch whatever amazing show the drag collective Haus of Quench is producing there. All Night Skates also has an amazing kitchen with fantastic food (personally I love the quesadilla and fries). For the final day, I would take them to drag brunch at Queen off the Jefferson L with PIxel and Nikita Petrovna. We’d walk throughout Bushwick to go thrifting at GG’s Social Trade and Treasure Club or L Train Vintage. And ending the day by catching the sunset while sitting by the piers of williamsburg at Domino Park.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Well, first and foremost I must shout out my mom, Delma Johnson. From birth, all she ever wanted from me was to be myself and find happiness. ALL of my success is rooted in the love and support she’s given me and the wisdom to trust myself and what I know to be right. In addition to my mom, I have to acknowledge my friends, chosen family, and my Black Trans community. It was at my darkest and most depressed, they were the ones to remind me of my light, my power, and my voice when I couldn’t see any of the three. Lastly, I must say all of the Black trans individuals before me, from Marsha P. Johnson, Miss Major, Octavia St. Laurent, Crystal Labeija, and so many more. They were fighting for my right to exist and thrive before I was born. I have the honor to walk the path they laid and help to lay more of the path for future Black Trans people.

Website: minttymakeup.com

Instagram: @juniormintt

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCSfUOLBZ6mgjV7ZTHIF8I1Q

Other: Insta- @mintty.makeup Insta- @inlivingcolorbk

Image Credits
L-R, T-B Eli Schmidt Nicholas Needham Eli Schmidt Madeleine Rose Delma Johnson Lexi Webster

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