Blanche Macdonald Freelance Makeup graduate Sukhi Lidher is a stunningly talented South Asian Bridal Artist with some of the top posts in the #vancouvermakeupartist Instagram category. She also happens to be one of the most in-demand South Asian Bridal Makeup Artists in the Vancouver area, with her schedule booked well into 2023. Her social media is active on every platform possible, her makeups are breathtaking, and she’s even developed her own lip kits! So how does she do it? To mere mortals, it may seem daunting. But to Sukhi—who also happens to be the first female entrepreneur in her family—it all comes down to two things: making the journey count and having confidence in yourself.
Once you find that confidence in yourself, you really can do anything. I used to think that I needed to be great or perfect at everything to even try.
You’re clearly a very savvy entrepreneur. Can you tell us a bit about that journey and share some of your top self-marketing tips?
It really is a journey. I’ve been doing it now for a little over seven years, and it comes down to having confidence in yourself. I think a lot of people, especially when they first start out, lack confidence. But once you find that confidence in yourself, you really can do anything. I used to think that I needed to be great or perfect at everything to even try. Like filming or editing videos, that was hard for me to start because I was nervous and totally overthinking it. But no matter what it is, just give it a try. Most things are made out to be much more complicated in your head, and with enough practice, things will start to become second nature. A couple of girls who follow me send me messages all the time, being like, “How do you do it? It looks so hard but yours are so beautiful.” And I always tell them to just start doing it, start doing Makeup, start making videos; it’s the only way to get better. It was really only a little over a year ago that I really started making my content better and trying to come up with exciting content because I never thought I could do it, either. There are accounts you can follow with all kinds of tips and tricks to help you get started. My main piece of advice would be to pick up as many tips from as many people as possible and keep the videos under 30 seconds. Anything longer than that, and people don’t really watch.
Just start doing it, start doing Makeup, start making videos; it’s the only way to get better. It was really only a little over a year ago that I really started making my content better and trying to come up with exciting.
You’ve got over 100K followers on Instagram, over 58K on TikTok, and you’re booked well into 2023! What’s your secret to growing your business so steadily to reach these huge milestones?
I started doing Makeup back in 2014, and compared to now, Instagram was still a fairly new thing. There weren’t as many artists on there, so it was easier to gain a following when I started out. The biggest thing I did that helped me get off on the right foot was tagging companies when using their products. The app has changed so much since I started, and there are many more people on there now, but this is still applicable to artists at any stage. I started investing in myself and my kit and searching out products that I really loved, buying them and then tagging them in the final shots. I’ve ordered Huda Beauty since it was not mainstream and would ship from overseas with these exorbitant duty fees. But I loved it, so I used it all the time and tagged her in all my photos. The first time she reposted me, she had a few million followers. She’s reposted me about seven times, I think now, and every time she does, I see massive growth of 30-40,000 followers finding me. That’s really the best starting off point you can have. Try to find brands that you love and just tag them in everything. You also have to be consistent; it’s really key on these platforms. Just keep putting stuff you love out there, and people will follow you.
What kind of looks are your South Asian bridal clients asking for lately?
My clients love the full glam. The outfits are so heavy, there’s so much jewelry and so much going on that the full glam is almost necessary! In the last little while, I have noticed a bit of a change where some clients want to go a bit more natural and glowy, but it’s still very glamorous. My brides love the feathered brows and are coming around to a softer glam look, but I think that the full glam will always be a trend.
You’ve got a huge list on AllMyLinks that even includes your Amazon store! What was the thought process behind that?
I love shopping on Amazon; it’s so easy and convenient. I started the store because so many people were asking me where I got things in the background of my posts, things I used to organize my kit, and all those random little things you can find on Amazon, so I started a store. It’s a cool way to connect with followers because I’ll be like, “Oh I love this XYZ,” and they can buy the same thing as me and know that I like it and find it helpful.
Speaking of your followers, their many questions on your lip colour led you to develop your own lip kits recently. Can you share a bit about that process?
Yes! I constantly get asked what lip colour I’m wearing, like all the time. It’s probably the most asked question on my socials. I have three signature colours that I go for when I’m doing lips, so I thought, why not develop my own for the colours I wear most. I researched some manufacturers and found a Canadian one that I wanted to work with. Then I tested the products, colours, and formulations until I found the ones I liked! It was a long process and a bit stressful but this past year, I finally had the time to focus on it. I have a vision board of my business goals, and this is one thing that has been on there for so long. It’s something I dreamt of that I never knew if I would do or not, but my dream came to life! Everyone loves them so far too, which of course, is just another dream come true. They turned out so well.
I actually went to university for Criminology, and I didn’t like it. Then I went into teaching and worked with special needs kids for a while. I did like that, but Makeup was always on my mind.
What brought you to Blanche Macdonald in the beginning?
I actually went to university for Criminology, and I didn’t like it. Then I went into teaching and worked with special needs kids for a while. I did like that, but Makeup was always on my mind. My mom always had the best Makeup and hair so, from the time I was little, I was always watching her do it and trying to sneak products of my own into the cart when we went shopping. I always did my own Makeup and posted it all throughout my other jobs, and then people started reaching out asking if I would do their Makeup. I said no because I’d never worked on anyone else before, but that’s when I finally started to wonder if I should actually pursue Makeup. I finally decided that I’d give myself a year or two, try really hard, and if it didn’t work out, I’d go back to teaching. My parents were not happy about it at all. They wanted me to stick with my 9-to-5 job with benefits. No one we knew did anything like Makeup for a job. That was when I realized I was the first female entrepreneur in my family! I knew I needed to try and do what made me really happy. Blanche was always where I knew I would go if I was going to pursue Makeup. You want that certificate, the training and the knowledge from one of the most recognized schools in Canada to start your career with, right?
Blanche was always where I knew I would go if I was going to pursue Makeup. You want that certificate, the training and the knowledge from one of the most recognized schools in Canada to start your career with, right?
And how was your time there?
The Makeup program was so interesting. We took it all the way back to basics, starting with sanitizing and making sure your station is clean, setting things up for the most efficient flow, and developing your own makeup process. I learned so much and met so many people. It was the perfect way to start off my new career.
What would you tell them for students looking to move into the Bridal Makeup Artistry world?
I would say to take absolutely any opportunity that comes. And practice always. I used to go to school, come home around 3:30, quickly do my hair and then get a full makeup done so I could take pictures before the sun went down. I did that for months! Take pictures and post them no matter how happy you are with the outcome. Now I can’t believe some of the Makeup I used to do! But that’s exactly how you self-correct, learn and get better. We all start somewhere. You have to be ok starting with skills that you’re still learning. Don’t compare yourself to other people, have your goal, get your practice in, and have total tunnel vision for your dreams because nothing else should matter. Don’t ever give up!
The Blanche Makeup Program was so interesting. It was the perfect way to start off my new career.
Can you tell us what’s next on your vision board?
I’m starting to do masterclasses! I’ve really wanted to start hosting big makeup classes where people can come and learn everything. I was actually getting ready to kick all that off before COVID, so hopefully, I’ll be able to do my first one closer to the end of this year or the start of next. I have a whole vibe in mind for them; everything from the venue, to the sponsors, the goodie bags—I just want it to be a really fun event. I love hosting and throwing parties so decorating and planning will be SO fun for me. Otherwise, I think I’m also going to be expanding my makeup line, too!