Bongani Ndlovu, Showbiz Correspondent
A LOT of women are curious to know how their favourite celebrities are always on point in terms of make-up when they appear on television, magazine covers and even on their social media pages.
For a fact, most of these celebrities/socialites do not go it alone as they have a team of people who work very hard to bring out that beauty and one such person is Elinah Mangena.
The South Africa-based makeup artist has worked with a number of stars such as Mbo Mahocs, award-winning TV personality Nonhle Thema, Chi Mhende (Wandile from Generations the Legacy), Thuso Mbhedu and radio personality Donna Nc.
Her most recent work was on fast-rising Afro pop star Tamy Moyo on her music video Tekere. Her make-up game, as what they call it these days, was lit!
It brought out the star power that Tamy Moyo has and this complemented well the music video that was produced and directed by award-winning Andy Cutta.
For a person who has worked with some well-known people, it is very impressive to discover that Mangena has been doing this for one year.
And for those who are already curious, the good news is that The Boss Lady, as Mangena is known, is in Bulawayo for a Beauty Workshop that will be held today in Morningside.
She said she was in the country following requests from women to come and help with their makup. The Boss Lady, who is an aspiring lawyer, said: “I discovered that make-up wasn’t just about brushes and all, it was more than that. When a woman has her face done well, it gives her confidence that “I’m Beyonce” at that moment.
“She gets to explore a different side of her personality and starts perceiving herself in a different light,” said Mangena.
The celebrity image consultant grew up in Bulawayo before relocating to South Africa in 2011 to study law with Unisa. Mangena, who grew up as a tomboy, credits her flatmate Novuyo, who is now her assistant, for unlocking her interest in beauty enhancement.
She said she started off working on her own face when her flatmate moved out and as fate would have it, people started complimenting her asking who had done her makeup.
Among those who complimented her was a client at the law firm where she was doing her articles. She asked her to do her face and Mangena gladly did so. From this client, Mangena’s doors opened as more and more people sought her services. This saw her skip work on some days before she eventually decided to call it quits on her law career.
Mangena said it was only by chance that she got to work with Chi Mhende after she was recommended by one of her clients.
“Chi Mhende had to go for some function and through the network I had established on social media and my sister Ancillar Mangena, she was recommended to me. At that time, I didn’t have a complete make-up kit, but I used what I had.
“In my opinion it wasn’t that great, but she liked it and she called me again. Then people like Nonhle Thema called me after getting my contacts from my Instagram page.”
The beautician said she has had clients cry after she would have worked wonders on their faces.
“The first time I saw a woman cry was when I did her make-up just before she walked down the aisle. I was astonished when I saw her cry as I thought I’d done her make-up badly.
“But it was that she hadn’t seen herself like that in a long time.”
She said all women hate bad make-up and that was why most are particular on who does their make-up.
“Like Chi Mhende, after I did her make-up, she didn’t want anyone to do her face besides me. My sister also has her own preferences and I’m one of them. And these two are just like many other women who are very particular about who does their make-up, hair or wardrobe,” said Mangena.
Her advice to women is to take time to work their make-up because it is a skill they can improve.
“Some can get to a professional level like myself but it takes practice. But they can grasp the basics where they can do their eyebrows and mascara on their own.
“This is why I’m doing these workshops to impart that knowledge to women and make them feel better after putting on make-up,” said Mangena.
Another piece of advice for women from Mangena is not to shave off eyebrows and draw them back with a pencil (eyeliner) as she described the process as a crime.
“The worst mistake women can do when it comes to make-up is shaving off their eyebrows only to draw them back on with eyeliner. That’s a no no, it’s a crime against humanity! The eyebrows are supposed to enhance what you already have. You are supposed to shape them using tweezers. This is what people will learn during the workshop.”
Another big NO is women with dark toned skin trying to look lighter using foundation.
“I get clients who want to look lighter and they end up having two shades from their skin tone. The mistake they make is in choosing foundation using their facial tone.
“They should either choose using foundation that goes along with the skin tone of their neck or hands because you want to blend it with your body. Our necks are darker than our faces,” said Mangena.
“Interestingly, I get white clients who want to look darker and my African sisters who want to look lighter when they call me to do their make-up.”