Name: Ace Watson
Ace Watson might not have spent seasons on the runway, or smizing down from store end caps but she is no newbie. The seasoned makeup artist has been on sets for years collaborating with brands like the The Colored Girl Collective on bold presentations that highlight the beauty of Black women, and being featured in style segments for publications like Essence. Like many creatives in the gig economy she has done that while holding down a job taking advantage of the opportunity to expand her knowledge and practice her craft with a steady paycheck coming in.
This year Watson took her commitment to making the most of her time with the company one step further by entering its Sephora Squad competition. Designed to select representatives to be ambassadors for the international beauty conglomerate for one calendar year the competition for a slot was stiff, but Watson never faltered. Shortly after the announcement of this year’s picks she talked to Hello Beautiful about what it took stand out in the crowd of candidates.
Watson credits her success to, “my determination and my no tolerance attitude.”
“Fun fact when I first started at Sephora I started as a seasonal cash rep and they wanted to put me on the cash register. I told my manager at the time ‘Look I’m not going to be a cashier I’m going to be on the floor doing makeup and selling makeup, and then I just went in and I proved myself.
I proved myself by showing them action as opposed to just telling them what I wanted to do I showed them what I’m capable of doing and that this is how you’re going to use me better.”
She took the same approach to securing her place. Practicing for a career in the spotlight through the competition. “I want to work on commercials,” she revealed. Not having formal training didn’t intimidate her. “Skill you can always gain a skill,” she said. “But your unique personality, your unique look, your unique style is what speaks.” She saw doing things like finding her lighting and practicing poses as chance to “stretch me artistically.”
She campaigned hard swapping out a portion of her usual inspirational “morning gram” videos for stylized tutorials and photos that showed her ability to represent the brand in static or video format. Now that she has proven her versatility she hopes to use her platform with Sephora to reach a bigger audience so she can inspire more people.
“I hope I can make a difference for anyone male, female, Black, white, Asian by letting them know that there’s someone like them out there letting them know that there is someone that’s a representation of them.”
Placement in the Sephora Squad will give Watson the opportunity to not only appear in digital advertisements representing the interests of the brand to the everyday person to others it will allow her to advocate for diversity to brand decision makers. She doesn’t yet know how she will speak up for others in the space, but she is making it a priority to continue being her “bold, honest and outgoing,” self.
“Sephora is a universal place it’s a universal playground. It opens a lot of fields for me. I want to be a representation for women of color there. This is how I’m going to make an impact by doing what I love.”