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Facing up to low self-esteem

BRUSH OF SUCCESS: Makeup artist Teresa Reynolds, 25, hard at work

A TRAINED youth worker who is educating young women that they do not need makeup to look beautiful is on a mission to empower a new generation.

Businesswoman Teresa Reynolds, 26, of west London, set up IB Youth with the support of The Prince’s Trust enterprise programme in 2012, to tackle issues with confidence and self-esteem through workshops on education and employment and beauty tutorials.

The professional makeup artist who was bullied as a teenager said: “I once had low self-esteem, so I saw there was a real need for something like this. I have always been interested in makeup and working with young people so I thought it would be a good idea to put them together as it’s something that can help people. I have not seen anyone else who is a trained makeup artist and trained youth worker doing what I am doing, so it’s a unique concept.”

Reynolds, who until recently volunteered at Dare London – the youth advisory board for the London Youth network – has successfully delivered workshops to over 200 young women aged between 13 and 25 years old in Hammersmith and Fulham, Lambeth and Lewisham and has enjoyed positive feedback.

AGE-APPROPRIATE

She said: “The aim is to get [the girls] to be more confident in what they are doing and how they are going about things in life. I teach them age-appropriate makeup and get to understand their needs, their wants, how they feel, and why they wear makeup. I want to show them that makeup doesn’t have to be a mask–it’s a tool. You can show you who are. You don’t need to cover up.”

A key part of the sessions also focuses on healthy skincare and Reynolds’ workshops have won the backing of beauty firm Elemis which has donated products.

Reynolds added: “I always say to [the girls] that it’s fine to experiment, but know you are still the same beautiful person without makeup, which is why I also focus on body image, relationships and future choices. It’s a programme designed for inner and outer beauty.

“It’s about giving them the chance to grow and have the opportunity to move forward and realise their dreams.” 

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