Meet Cuan Kemp–Head of Makeup & Training for Kryolan

He is an ace MUA, a model, and also the Head of Makeup &Training for Kryolan. Meet our Make-Up Jury for HBS 2018, Cuan Kemp
13 June, 2018
Nidhi Soparawala

“I discovered Make-up Artistry by mistake”, says Cuan. From planning to studying advertising or marketing to actually becoming an expert make-up artist has been quite an unpredictable yet interesting journey for Cuan. He fell in love with make-up the first time he took it up as a job. He is passionate not just about being a MUA but also about make-up – the craft. He loves his field of work and enjoys the fact that he can transform the way one looks with make-up. Cuan has been in the make-up industry for more than decade and is also an educator for make-up now.

Let’s find out more about Cuan, his journey and his views about the make-up industry…


  1. How has the journey been so far for you as a MUA?

It’s been a lot of hard work, a lot of late nights and early mornings. But honestly I have loved every minute of it! Working with creatives on exciting projects really is so much fun!

  1. What makes you different than the other MUAs?

I think most MUA’s out there are really creative and talented. I grew up being very close with my mother and 2 older sisters. So, I think I just have a really good understanding of what most women want, and the also probably the fact that I focus on natural looking skin.

  1. What goes into becoming a professional MUA?

A whole lot of passion. If you have no passion for this industry and the craft that you do, you will never make it. You have to love make-up and the art of transformation.

  1. How important do you think education is in this field?

Education, for me, is crucial. Knowing the correct way of doing things can result in a better result and a happier client, as there is a lot of really important technical information that is taught in the training institutions.

 5.What are the most challenging aspects of your job?

Maintaining my professionalism in tough situations. Sometimes a client, or the client’s family, can be so overbearing that they try and tell you how to do your job. It can get rather frustrating, but you’ve just got to count to 10 and smile!

  1. What elements in the job do you enjoy the most?

I love transformation. Seeing the before and the after really makes me happy. Also when you help a lady who suffers from really low self-esteem, seeing her face when she looks in the mirror is really satisfying.

  1. What inspires you in this business?

I draw most of my inspiration from nature – whether a flower, a colour or the sunset and sunrise. Music also inspires me a lot. Inspiration can be found anywhere, if you just look for it!

  1. How different or rather evolved is India and the women here when it comes to make-up?

I think obviously the various regions, with their respective cultures, have a variety of make-up ‘trends’ in India. Notably in Mumbai, I observed that most women are not afraid of make-up and embrace global trends more so than those from the traditional areas.

  1. How different is the make-up industry here as compared to that in South Africa?

In South Africa, our clients are still somewhat reluctant to play with colours. They usually stick to the natural or smoky look, whereas in India, the women embrace colour and show no fear when it comes to putting something bright on the skin.

  1. How do you bring your own individuality in the work you do?

Aside from my friendly disposition. I like to focus on the skin and the eyes. I like bold, dramatic and well-defined eyes and a natural looking skin. Most of our clients in South Africa do not like a heavy, caked foundation, so ensuring that the skin looks natural is vitally important for me.


Favourite cuisine: Italian (I love pasta) and Indian food – I love a good biryani!

Favourite holiday destination: London & Cape Town

Favourite stress buster: Listening to music & a long hot bubble bath!

Most memorable moment: Being asked to join the Kryolan Pro Team for the 2018 Calendar

Personal style statement: Somewhere between casual and preppy

Highest high: Becoming an international trainer for Kryolan

Lowest low: Losing my grandfather a few years ago

  1. favourite salon: Carlton Hair salon is my favourite. Also, any salon where I can get my hair done as well as a facial and a massage all at the same place...



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