Manny Mua And Patrick Starr Talk About Being Men In The Beauty Industry

And how we can continue to shape it

Photographed by Amy Harrity.

The following feature appears in the October 2016 issue of NYLON.

After taking a leap of faith by creating their youtube channels to show off their skills, makeup artists Manny Mua and Patrick Starrr became overnight sensations (and best friends) in a beauty world that was once believed to be for girls only. Here, we chat self-love, makeup secrets, and how to handle the haters, one highlighter at a time.

What was your first memory of playing with makeup?
Manny Mua: When I was a young boy I would watch my mom apply her makeup, so one day I took a lipstick she had and put it on my mouth, trying to imitate her. It ended up all over my face.
Patrick Starrr:I didn’t play with makeup until I was 17 years old, but I remember stealing my mom’s CoverGirl foundation that was too dark for me [laughs].

When was the first time you were told it wasn’t okay for boys to wear makeup?
PS: I’ll never forget the time I was told to wipe my makeup off at the makeup counter I was working at. It was the first moment something like that happened to me in public. All I wanted was to look good and sell what I was wearing on my face.
MM: I didn’t start wearing makeup until I was in my early 20s, so I never realized that makeup “wasn't for boys,” as many social norms say. 

Why is it important for men to be represented in the beauty industry?
PS: Makeup is one size fits all. It makes me feel good and it’s no different than what we eat and what we wear.
MM: It’s important because being different is beautiful. I believe that society needs to be more open and accepting of things that are seen as “different.”

What are your dreams for yourself in this industry?
PS: To bring awareness to parents out there that makeup is art. I want parents to educate and teach their children that men in makeup are no different than anyone else. At meet and greets I thank parents for allowing their children to watch my YouTube channel—it means so much to me. We can change the world.
MM: I would love to keep growing. I want to become successful and represent a different form of beauty in my generation.

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