We had the good fortune of connecting with Madison Bejarano and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Madison, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
Risk is so many beautiful things, while it can be scary it’s one of my biggest motivators. I think without risk I wouldn’t be where I am today because every facet of my career has lead me to have to risk or sacrifice something in order to get to the next level. And it never fails, every time I take the biggest risk, I get the GREATEST comeback, it’s like YOU already know what YOU need. In the middle of 2019, I wanted to quit beauty, I felt like there wasn’t space for my art or really for my heart because I kept seeing the same treatment across the industry. No matter where I went, it was the same negative energy, at times I would say “why can’t I just build my own beauty world? Why is everyone so miserable in a place that is supposed to be so colorful and why are we all faking it so that we can just sell products?” It never made sense to me how the CEO’s on top of the hierarchy were so good at telling those “below” them what would be good for them, without actually asking how they felt about certain changes. This lead me to cut ties with a lot of the spaces I once thought I could be a part of.
In the beginning of 2021, I took a course in Lash Extensions/Lift as a way to further connect with the clientele I already had through Makeup + mend my relationship with the beauty industry. I was already freelancing as a Makeup Artist and a Production Assistant but I knew I wanted to do something more because a part of me feels connected to help change the attitude of the industry. Let me also not leave out that while I freelanced I also enrolled in an afternoon Marketing Program called COOP Careers to help get an “Adult” job outside of just having two part-time jobs. That in itself is a risk. I ran the risk of burning out and enhancing my anxiety in which I did and this lead me to develop unhealthy habits where I was barely eating or when I was eating it was one meal for the whole day. I also ran the risk of losing my focus on what was important, myself. Without taking care of YOU first, how in the world will you help others?
I didn’t want to continue the same cycle where I was working anonymous jobs and I knew when I was commissioned to do makeup on my own terms that I was happy. Beauty on my own terms made me understand that my talent is across so many fields. Lashing was my next project and courses are not always affordable or accessible. I lived with my parents during all of these risks so I had the ability to save up any money I made to fund my lash course. However, after falling in love with lashing I knew I had to yet again take another risk to fulfill my dreams. I moved out of my parent’s home in March 2021 and had the ability to because I had the “Adult” job, but about one month later, I quit my 9AM-10PM job not knowing if I would be able to make the next months’ rent or if I would be able to sustain a business I knew so little about. This risk had to be the scariest one yet because there was so much on the line. The greatest comeback for me had to be taking that one month off where I just spent time healing on what I had just done for the past two years. I put my body through so much physical and emotional pain that I was desensitized to even believe that my body was a mix of emotions. I took on meditation, got back to the gym, phoned a couple of friends, journaled and really centered myself before I got into my next adventure. I am thankfully still at the MadisonDBeauty studio, in a flexible contract role for marketing, running my business part-time, eating 3 meals a day, going to the gym 4-5 times a week, and enrolled in an esthetics evening program to receive my esthetics license in May. These are the risks I have to take in order to fulfill my purpose of building a better beauty world.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I fuel all of my creativity into makeup, lashes, facial massage and community building through Social Media. My business is centered around the idea that beauty is a verb, it’s not only what you see but what you hear and feel. Any time I’ve experienced a sunset, a guided meditation, a museum, a new food, a fun makeup trick or met new people it was like I could actually feel what beauty is. With this realization, as a service provider, it was no longer required of me to meet a beauty standard nor was it required for me to provide one service equal to all. I believe that if we can feel beauty through many different experiences then beauty is not only physical nor is it singular. With this in mind, all the services provided through MadisonDBeauty are customized to your beauty needs. It’s unconditional YOU Time that you get to kick back, relax, and feel beautiful in the features you are already blessed with.
What makes me proud about my business is that it’s something I’ve always dreamed of. I was the little entrepreneur who could in Elementary School. I remember opening my first nail salon in an after school program and recreating fun nail art for my clients at 8 years old! I’ve always wanted to build a safe beauty space and be an educator to my clients on how to best achieve their desired look. With my experience throughout the years, I went from wanting to work for top brands to creating my own brand because I understood that the only way my message could be heard is by creating beauty on the terms that allows creativity to flow freely. It’s also so surreal to see the growth I’ve seen in the past 6 months already, this makes me so proud and motivated to see what is in store for the next year.
I want the world to know that the creative path has not been easy, but neither is anything so if there is anything in the world that you want to do, just do it because the world is yours! I put off my ideas for the beauty industry for about 2 years until I realized corporate america was not for me. I also thought that there wasn’t space for me to vocalize my ideas because it was ingrained in me through trauma that I wasn’t good enough. You are good enough and in order for you to get through your challenges you must accept that challenges are only momentary. Make your challenges into something beautiful and always celebrate your failures and successes!
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?
New York is filled with so many amazing things to do and meals to eat! I would recommend doing a Paint and Sip at Muse PaintBar in the city and ordering their Blood Orange Sangria – super refreshing and liquid inspiration is what can help bring out the artist in you. If you are in the Brooklyn Area, please visit Juanchi’s for the best burger and fries and while you are there stop by a bunch of thrift shops in Brooklyn and Queens, there are so many to choose from – Unique, L Train Vintage, Urban Jungle, etc. Also if you are looking for some city sights visit LIC in Queens, there you will find the New York Skyline. But if you are looking for a picnic area I’d recommend Marsha P. Johnson State Park in Brooklyn, there is so much grass you can just chill at while overlooking the water!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My shoutout goes to my family, my friends, and my dog, Lola. Any wild idea I have you all support it and that makes me the happiest person alive. During my hardest times you held me, you listened, and taught me what a safe space feels like and looks like. It’s this support that makes me want to share it with the world and I am eternally grateful. You all help me keep the pieces together.
Carlos Amaya Will Luo