In Conversation With Camara

Exclusive Conversation with Makeup Artist Camara AUnique Helps

Her inspiring journey from self-taught makeup artist to renowned beauty entrepreneur and philanthropist.

Exploring her experiences with industry icons and her drive to support women of color, Camara shares her insights on faith, mentorship, and the transformative power of makeup.


Camara, what inspired you to pursue a career in makeup artistry, and how has your journey evolved over the past 14 years?

When I discovered my interest in the beauty industry I was working in retail at MACYS in 34th street NYC. I remember working in between the two MAC makeup stands, those women inspired me and I wanted to be just like them! The confidence they carried was incredible, but the downfall to it was they weren’t the kindest people when I came around to ask questions. 

This fueled something within me to become one of the best makeup artists and I started my journey on being self-taught. Now as I have evolved I know that experience helped me to see myself in up and coming artists be who I needed when I was in their shoes. See that joy in them to want to experience the beauty world and step into their God given calling unapologetically but also with a grace to always make sure they look back and reach out to those coming after them as well.

makeup artistry

Can you share some memorable moments or experiences working with renowned celebrities like Angela Bassett, Ava DuVernay, and others?

I do have some amazing stories to share like Yvette Nicole Brown the icon she is on our first time meeting picking me up in LA and driving me to her home to get her ready for an event, 8 years later we still work together. Mrs. Angie as I like to lovingly refer to Mrs Angela Bassett has looked out for me and advocated for me, during the pandemic I was just moving to LA and she allowed me to come hang with her but she knew that I was new to LA and she knew the pandemic had us not working so she split jobs between me and her LA artist just to make sure I was able to have money and pay bills. I like to think I am blessed to work with people who consider me just as much as I consider them and for that, I am grateful to God.

Your handcrafted faux mink lashes received Essence Magazine’s 2020 Best in Black Beauty Award. What drove you to create your beauty line, and what sets it apart from others?

Yes, and the Hello Beautiful “Melanin Beauty Award” in 2023 I have to shout them out because they consistently support my brand.

Black Beauty Award

My drive came from finding God and finding my purpose. Being a Christian woman I had never seen a beauty brand that advocated for my spiritual beliefs and I thought to myself it was too heavy to do, but one day I started to teach myself about the iconic women in the Bible and I thought how profound and relatable their stories were, how as a woman in this modern world I can see myself in these women shoes and though the times were different the stories many of us experience is similar.

I wanted to tell that story. I wanted women to see themselves in these women but also look in the Bible to see how they overcame trials and triumphed. This brand is set apart because it’s not about me it’s about helping women see their beauty image and identity through the eyes of the Lord.

How do you balance your passion for ministry with your successful career in the beauty industry?

To be honest it just merges, my clients know I minister and love God and they love me for my authenticity. The balance I would say is knowing how to read a room and being present not only with the client but with God so that I know when to speak and how to speak. This is something I have had to learn the hard way.

When I started I would blurt things but through maturity and development, I am able to be compassionate and considerate of the room I am and just be.

beauty industry


As a native of Brooklyn, how has your upbringing and the diverse environment of New York influenced your approach to your work and philanthropy?

I grew up in Flatbush, Brooklyn, to a single mother. Seeing how my mother was dedicated to giving me a good life while pushing me to be my best was inspiring, my grandmother and how she pushed to make sure her children were well cared and even how she cared for her grandkids was inspiring, my aunts how they showed up for me was inspiring. And though I probably didn’t recognize it back then being more mature I can see how it truly takes a village to raise up a child.

My family is Caribbean from Trinidad and Tobago so there was always a sense of pride and respect for my culture, but growing up in Flatbush you saw how the culture didn’t always see the bigger picture. I knew that I always wanted to give back to others and with a Name like Helps how can I not think of other people. Being philanthropic has to be who you truly are for it to be effective-9 and since I started in makeup I have been donating my time to underprivileged girls via a prom dress drive, this helped me nurture the young girl in me who worked at the young age of 15 just to afford to have things I liked and wanted. And being an adult now I look back wishing I could’ve just been a kid. So how can I help

That teen whose mother can’t afford the full experience but desires to do that for her child. I was a part of also donating time to thrivers of domestic violence relationships, I like to affectionately call them that because I thrived from my experience and I believe every pain we grow through prepares us for our true calling. I had to turn my pain points into purpose.

What advice would you offer to aspiring makeup artists and beauty entrepreneurs, especially those from underrepresented communities?

The advice I would give now is to find a mentor who walks in the fruits of the Holy Spirit and that means someone who’s patient, kind, gentle, disciplined, loves what they do and people are joyful and exudes faithfulness and goodness in their life. This person will know how to steward your destiny and experience with them correctly. They will push you to be your best and release you to grow and be great. They would teach you how to be a great leader yourself so you too can build up others.

Can you elaborate on the importance of proper makeup application for women of color?

For years women of color especially in Hollywood have had experiences of not having people do their makeup who knew how to match them. A while back I was with my client Naturi Naughton when she was doing a major play at the 92Y in NYC. During that time one of her cast mates hired a makeup artist from an app I wouldn’t say the name of. The young woman was not a person of color and only had makeup for a white or Latina woman. You can tell she was scared and instead of asking for help she panicked and cried. I stopped her and helped her through the application, the company then reached out to thank me but never followed up with having me teach their artists.

It is important that we don’t condemn people who do not know but use it as a teachable moment to help lead them to feel safe to want to try again and learn. But it’s also the company’s responsibility to make sure they’re providing resources and classes for those students who want to know how to do makeup for all women but don’t know where to start or how to ask since race is a touchy subject and black women are just tired having to teach someone how to respect and see us.

Makeup Artist Camara

How do you maintain your incomparable work ethic and unwavering faith in an industry known for its fast pace and challenges?

I am very strong on integrity and honesty. I also live by being aware of myself and how others make me feel. Having an awareness of yourself and knowing your own triggers and things you can work on helps you see things from a Godly perspective. So when a challenge comes my way I can step back and ask myself if is this my flesh or if is this a lesson I am being taught for my next level. Being this way helps me see a challenge and face it in love and move forward.

Also having my faith in Christ has helped me balance my life by allowing me to see people through his eyes. And not condemn them and forgive easily.

Can you discuss the significance of incorporating relaxation and empowerment into your makeup sessions, as mentioned in your bio?

I’m that girl who loves peace. I enjoy my own peace but I also enjoy providing a peaceful experience when someone works with me. Hiring a makeup artist is a luxury and when someone is paying for a luxurious experience you want to make sure you’re providing that.

I also step back and think that God wants me to service his child at the moment and just as much as he cares for me he cares for them, so how can I maximize this time with them and also make sure they feel seen and heard.

In Conversation With Camara

Also collaborating with the client is key. This helps bring that sense of safety so they know that the person working on their face is listening to their needs and wants, this also helps them grow with someone and in return helps them feel empowered and involved in their process of getting ready. This works well with celebrities and executives because most times they’re preparing to speak and show up and they want to know and feel safe that their team wants to see them win!

What future goals or projects are you excited about pursuing, both professionally and philanthropically?

So much is happening I am speaking more and just did my first keynote speech! So if there are any speaking opportunities I have a story to tell! I am also expanding my beauty line and launching something beautiful at the end of this year! And I am really excited about that. I also have my More than Just Makeup™️ Academy, where I coach/ mentor creatives and help them reach their goals and pursue destiny!

makeup sessions

Finally, what legacy do you hope to leave behind through your work and contributions to the beauty and empowerment communities?

Wow! The legacy I want to leave is that every person who came in contact with me from now until I pass on that they saw God through me and heard his voice when I speak. I learned that this life isn’t about us conforming to how the world moves and being comfortable with being the Unique people we were born to be!

My name Camara AUnique Helps means Teacher who is different and helps others with her network and knowledge, I pray that that’s the legacy that’s left as well. That Camara surrendered her life and walked in the fullness of being a wonderful, loving helpmate to those she’s called to.

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