This is something I don't really talk about, something which is quite personal to me but has helped me grow into the person I am today. If you're a regular client of mine who has supported me from the moment I stepped into this industry, then you will surely know the story behind me becoming a make-up artist ... If you don't, well now is your chance to find out.
This isn't a sob story and it isn't a sympathy vote either, this is simply me writing about my personal experience and reasons behind where I am today. I want to share this with the people who have supported me from the start, as well as someone like you, who may have come across my blog and decided to have a quick read :)
This is something if not most of you, then definitely some of you may be able to relate to.
School is supposed to be one of the periods in your life where it's the place you have the most fun, was it like this for me? Yes, I loved my school, the teachers and the opportunities which were given to us as students, of course. It would be wrong for me to say it wasn't a good time, however saying that there were times where I didn't want to go in at all ... It couldn't have been that bad? Unfortunately, it was but I stuck through it.
I was bullied throughout school on and off for around four years, as mentioned earlier in this post I don't speak about it because it isn't something I share with a lot of people. Although that's how I feel, I still think it is worth writing a piece on my blog about it. The bullying which I had was a mix between, people who knew me personally outside of school, simply picking on me and being nasty because they could, as well as racial bullying alongside a million other 'reasons'.
I went to a great school, a Catholic school so you can imagine what the classrooms were like - pretty much two or three Asians in the room. Like I said the school was great, you just couldn't say the same for the minority of the students who also studied there. It all started off with racial bullying, things like pushing me over on the stairs, calling me racist names and picking on me for the way my hair was. Simply picking on me for the way I looked and essentially who I was.
Do any of you guys remember scoobies, the little plastic things we used to make key-rings out of? So I had some of those on my bags, it got to the point where these boys who picked on me had a lighter and tried to set my bag on fire whilst I was wearing it. Yes, it pushed to that - I'm not the type of person to say anything, I stuck it out and carried on with a smile on my face. I didn't tell my parents about it either, I kept quiet. That was probably the worst thing to do.
The bullying with these boys was on and off, that's when two girls from my class decided it was ok for them to also start picking on me. Again with the name calling, racist remarks, telling me they would beat me up outside of school. It was ridiculous and again there were more people involved. People who I thought were my friends, they then turned on me and began to bully me too.
I won't go into the details of it all, but from what you've read so far I'm sure you've got a good grasp of it, right? No? Ok, so these types of incidents were consistent at one point and that is when I arrived home crying. I broke down and told my mum and dad what was happening, if you know me personally then you know my dad is not one to take any nonsense. He went straight to the school and sorted it all out - meetings with the Head Teacher, Deputy Head Teacher and the Head of Year. After the meetings, all I had to do was talk to the teachers if someone bothered me and it would be resolved straight away. I wouldn't have to wait around for it to be brushed off.
All I had to do was speak, it concerns me how many young children don't speak and make their loved ones aware of the bullying they may be receiving. From my experience, it's difficult - you're scared about going into class because you'll see those bullies siting on the table opposite you. They'll find you in the playground, it isn't nice at all ...
Telling my mum and dad was the best thing I did, that was all I had to do. It's a million times better than holding it all in and suffering in silence. I was 11 years old, vulnerable and scared.
Many of the comments which were nastily thrown at me, really did have a knock on effect on my confidence. I was a very simple person, not into make-up, I didn't even thread my eyebrows! Towards the end of year 9, when I began to stand my ground and stand up to these bullies I decided maybe I should have my eyebrows threaded and maybe I should also try looking better too. Why did I let them get to me and bring me down so much?
I shouldn't have let these people make me feel like that, but I did and unfortunately that is how bullies work. They make you feel like you're not the great person you are, they make you feel like you have no value. They make you feel insecure because they have their insecurities they cannot deal with themselves!
So towards the end of school, I did pick up a little bit of eyeliner and had a go at it - it worked. It made me feel a little bit better having a small amount of make-up on my eyes (strange how little things like that make you feel right?)
You'd think the ups and downs finished with school? But they never. I started college, again back to my old-self with the thought that this is going to be completely different. This is the time, where I will enjoy my years studying, make friends and just have fun.
Yes, I made some great friends and those people are still in my life till this day. Yes, I had an amazing time at college too and had a lot of fun whilst studying, but there was always that one person who would bring my self-confidence down. Whether it was because I was a different religion to the friendship group I had, or down to the fact I didn't bother dolling myself up for college (I mean who does that? You're going there to study, not win a beauty pageant). Either way, during college I also experienced people making nasty comments about the way I looked, what I wore and who I was again.
What did I do? I picked up some make-up products from my local Superdrug store and started experimenting on how to use it and how to make myself look better, because of these people. I still remember standing in the store, trying to pick the right foundation shade for my skin. I was approached by a beautiful sales assistant and she was so pretty, I actually wanted to have make-up like her, I wanted to look like her. This is how much I lacked confidence in the way I looked because I had always consistently been picked on about little things to do with my appearance.
I still remember it like it was yesterday.
Recently I had a make-up artist with a mass following private message me on Instagram, telling me 'Maybe you shouldn't be so stuck up, you might get somewhere' ... Little does she know I'm in a good place in my life and the words this person said to me did not affect me in anyway. The reason for me sharing this is simply to share with you guys although people make out positivism is what they're about, these same people are sharing negativity else where.
From the day I started my make-up business till now, there is a huge difference in the make-up and hair I have done on my clients. It is pretty much my entire journey to where I am today. I still have my beautiful clients from the beginning who have supported me endlessly by recommending me to everyone they know and I will always be grateful and thankful to those people.
I have been in this industry for over 6 years, I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for those people who dragged me down and made me doubt myself. I guess that is the one good thing that came out of it, but that still does not give anyone else out there the right to bully someone and make an individual feel as though they're not good enough.
I have grown so much as an individual through my experience. My confidence was up and down as well as my self-esteem knocked, but what did I do? I turned it around, I made something of myself and this is what I will say to anyone else who has had someone or a group of people pick on them to bring them down - Take it as an experience, grow from it and make it something worth sharing.
Now it takes a lot for someone or their nasty words to affect me, it takes a lot more simply because I have grown myself as a woman and have learnt things the difficult way by going through what I did as a young individual.
Til this day, the reactions which I get from my clients after dressing them up are priceless, these reactions are the very thing that keeps me going. It's a rewarding feeling for me, as I know how some of these ladies feel when they're not feeling at their best.
I've had beauties say to me 'I'm not feeling my best today, please work your magic and make me feel beautiful' ... 'I hate myself without make-up, I can't not wear it' - My visits to each client are very different, I meet all kinds of people, these people who say these things I remind them, you're beautiful as you are.
Never let anyone tell you otherwise, never let anyone bring you down for any petty reason they may have. Remember you're you and there is nobody else out there like you.
My job is simply to apply some make-up to enhance your natural features, I'm not here to change the way you look drastically as this isn't what my brand or I'm about. It's all about enhancing your natural beauty to make you feel better from within ...
I love my job, I love making women feel better about themselves, feel confident and great from within.
This is where my love for make-up originated from, from my personal experiences.
I hope sharing my experience with you has given you a better insight to why I stepped foot into this industry.
This is what the Taran K Artist brand is about ... Empowering women and making you all feel beautiful!