‘Gabby Glam Co’, ‘Carnival Glam Hub’ , ‘Glam Con’: Do these business ventures ring a bell?
“For as long as I can remember, I just wanted to be a corporate girl.” Words of 23-year-old ‘glam boss’, Gabrielle Waite.
If you have been an avid social media user for the past three years, you would have witnessed the rise of a stunning, young girl boss in the local beauty industry.
Raised by both parents in Kingston city as an only child, Waite spent all her school years at Wolmer’s – pre, prep and high schools. She even describes herself as ‘bleeding maroon and gold’. Of course, soon after her time there, goals in hand, she headed to The University of the West Indies where she pursued a double major in finance and marketing.
“During university, I was introduced to a youth marketing agency by the name of UCA, and they exposed me to the marketing world. It was with them that I noticed my creativity and capabilities to become my own boss,” she recounted.
Make-up, Hair and Styling Consultancy
Having done the rounds with her mother, who also did her time as a make-up artist, Waite’s appetite for the beauty realm grew exponentially, and at the age of 21, during summer 2017, GabbyGlam Company, a make-up, hair and styling consultancy, was birthed. As Waite worked to build her clientele and her brand, she saw the opportunity to stamp her name on one of Jamaica’s fastest-growing foreign revenue industries – carnival! If you’ve ever participated in carnival as a reveller or a bystander, you know that no outfit is complete without great make-up, ‘beat to the gods’, and hair looking like it belongs on the cover of a magazine.
Waite started ‘Carnival Glam Hub’.
“I had some bookings for carnival 2018 and I didn’t want to do it at my house so I found a location, and when they gave me the cost, I figured I’d share the space with other make-up artists,” she said.
From 10 makeup artists and three hairstylists in that year, for 2019, Carnival Glam hub turned into a space hosting 50 makeup artists and, of course, additional hairstylists. Waite had no choice but to add more amenities to the package such as a shuttle service, breakfast and mimosas to allow revellers a unique glam experience.
“It was hard. At first I didn’t even tell my parents about the venture until I had all my ducks in a row, especially in regard to sponsorship. I had to believe in myself and my product like I never had before. I had to make sure I was still doing well in school,” said the determined extrovert.
That was not enough for this beauty and brain. Waite also planned and executed a beauty expo right here in Jamaica, which brought out celebrity make-up artists who have worked with famous faces such as Cardi B, Nicki Minaj and Chris Brown. The event is geared towards people in beauty who want to learn, grow and network while adding value to our local beauty industry.
Support and Advice
As a young entrepreneur, Waite draws on support from three sources: her parents, because they ask the hard questions; her friends, because they are always willing to lend a helping hand; and her mentor, because she is always ready to impart knowledge and offer guidance. To young aspiring entrepreneurs, Waite left this bit for you:
“Nike said it best: ‘Just Do It’ – simply because I’ve realised that there will never be a ‘perfect time’ to do anything. Things will always come up, life will always throw curve balls, whether it be financially, mentally or physically, so you just have to work with the imperfect time and do it now.”
Story by: Jessica Harrison – firstname.lastname@example.org
Photos by: Ricardo Makyn – email@example.com