Instagram Makeup Artist Isabel Bedoya on Beauty Standards, Motherhood, and Internet Thugs

In the past year, there's no doubt that makeup artists have dominated Instagram. From cut creases to contour, lip lining to lashes, beauty standards have evolved in rapid succession. Columbian makeup artist and mother Isabel Bedoya is the pinnacle of this media revolution. Since her first Instagram post in 2014, Bedoya has amassed nearly 2 million followers. Her popular video tutorials, showcasing shimmering 24K gold drops and artful color correcting, speak on what is truly deemed trendy in the makeup world at any given point. Editor-in-chief Olivia Ferrucci discussed eurocentrism, filming, and motherhood with Isabel for Lithium's obsession issue.
Lithium: How do the beauty standards and makeup styles differ between Columbia and the United States?
Isabel: More people can afford makeup products and waste money on material items [in America]. In Colombia, there aren't many jobs for people which means fewer people purchasing [makeup] products.

Lithium: What was the process of teaching yourself the art of makeup like?
Isabel: The process of teaching myself makeup is actually [continuous]. In the 'makeup world', you just don't stop learning. That's the beauty of it!

Lithium: Is it challenging to balance motherhood and your career?
Isabel:  Motherhood has actually pushed me to appreciate my career more and give it all I got. 

Lithium: When did you realize your career as a makeup artist was truly taking off on social media?
Isabel: I don't think you 'realize' your social media has officially become a career [until] someone asks you what you do for a living and you just think to yourself, "Oh, I do social media for a living!" It's a pretty cool feeling.

Lithium: You obviously possess a vast audience with a near 2 million followers on Instagram alone. How has being so connected online allowed for your growth as an artist?
Isabel: [Having] almost two million [followers] on Instagram has really [allowed me] to meet the most amazing people around the world who are so interesting in their own way. It really shows how equal we all really are to each other.

Lithium: As a woman of color, how do you struggle with eurocentric beauty standards in the beauty community?
Isabel: Any negativity I get I pay no mind to. I'm all about [good] vibes! Life's too good to stress about internet thugs. [laughing]

Lithium: Your makeup tutorial videos frequently rack up millions of views. What is the process of filming one of these like?
Isabel: The process of [making] my videos [takes] about two hours. [It] depends if I have to do my hair or if I forget to [charge] my camera. [laughing] Trust me, it happens! 

Lithium: What is the utmost message behind your platform?
Isabel: It doesn't matter who you are [or] what you look like; we are all the same. [Every individual] has something special that only you can find in yourself and that comes when you start to love yourself and life itself. 

Lithium: As someone who also lost their father as a child, what would your advice be to young individuals grieving their loved ones?
Isabel: Losing my father was definitely hard. If you have lost a loved one, just know your happiness will be their happiness while guiding you through everything negative in life. This is exactly why I love being positive! What does 2017 hold for you?

Lithium: What does 2017 hold for you?
Isabel: There's SO much 2017 holds for me. I can't wait for everyone to see what projects I have been working [on]!

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