In recent years, young girls from Kashmir and come to the forefront to pursue their passions openly. Make-up artistry is something that has now become a profession in recent times in Kashmir. 23 years old Umaiya hails from the Kangan area of district Ganderbal. She is the first make-up artist from her family and area.
Umaiya has completed her +2 studies from a science background. But she since her childhood had an inclination towards make-up and getting ready. “My family initially did not support me,” she told Ground Report. But currently, she is pursuing her dreams as a make-up artist. She completed her course in make-up through an online course by a Delhi-based institute. Though her family was at first completely against her pursuing this career, yet Umaiya’s determination helped her through. “Now my family shows me like fifty per cent support,” she told Ground Report.
For Umaiya make-up is that driving force that keeps her going. Coming from a rural background, society always questioned Umaiya’s path of career. But she did not let anything or anyone affect her, she was persistent that she will follow her dreams. She told Ground Report, “My family was not supportive because of the societal reasons. But I told my family that this is what I want to do.” Now when she is excelling in her forte her parents are encouraging her. “They now tell me that this is what I should do,” she said. Even the people from her locality taunt her criticise her, “People tell me that I am not interested in studies that is why I chose doing makeup,” she told Ground Report.
Since the internet connection in the valley is not reliable, Umaiya used to miss some of her classes. “The classes I missed, were recorded and they were available so I used to see the recordings of those lessons in case my internet was not available,” said Umaiya.
Umaiya has took make-up artistry as her full-time profession. Umaiya has her own Instagram handle @makeupbyumaiya from where people contact her for bookings and she also receives feedback for her work. She has a fixed package rate for her customers but does give relaxation to girls from financially weaker backgrounds. “For girls who are not financially that well I either do their make-up for free or give them a heavy discount,” she said. Umaiya is a one-girl army she handles her work on her own. All the products she uses in her work she arranges them on her own. Umaiya does not have a make-up studio but is hopeful to establish one of her own in near future.
Umaiya calls her friends her biggest support. “They used to convince me everytime to pursue make-up because I always do it well,” she acknowledges. Umaiya also does events and is hopeful of learning Bollywood make-up as well. She also is open for teaching people who are interested. “Recently I did a workshop with the help of Jammu and Kashmir bank Ganderbal for one month,” she said.
Inspired by Manu Bebo a transgender make-up artist from Kashmir, and her struggles Umaiya is all pumped up to go in life head on. She feels elated and proud about her expertise and determination.
Umaiya has a beautiful message for the young generation, “Never give up on your interests and do whatever you like, people will talk that is what they do, do not care about people, pursue and achieve your dreams.”