Created In Partnership With Target

A Full Face Beat Can Be Empowering — This Makeup Artist Staked Her Career On It

Moriah Mierre always knew she wanted to be in beauty — she spent her childhood accompanying her mother to her weekly hair appointments (a smooth ‘90s-style updo) and watching her get glammed up. “My mother was already a beautiful woman, but after she got her makeup done, I was like, ‘Oh wow, you look so gorgeous,’” remembers Mierre, who recalls her mother’s signature, a bright fuchsia lipstick with a plum lipliner. 
It was this early exposure to the transformative powers of beauty that inspired her to pursue a career in beauty — and ultimately, open the doors to her very own luxury makeup studio, The Beat Lounge, in May. “When women come sit in my chair and I’m done with their look, they have this newfound confidence — it lights a fire in them and they look like they’re ready to take on the world,” says the 31-year-old Detroit native. “As women, we’re so used to pouring ourselves into everyone else, but when you come sit in my chair, this is the time for you.” 
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In partnership with Target, we talked to Mierre about what it takes to be a beauty entrepreneur, how she's growing her business, and what she’s doing to uplift the Black community.
When did you first fall in love with makeup and beauty?
“Growing up, I always watched my mom and the women in my family get dressed up and do their makeup. Seeing that every day, I just instantly fell into it. But my mom didn’t let me wear makeup. In high school, I started to try it out and my mom would get so upset. She’d say, ‘You’re too young. Just wait.’ When I graduated high school, I became engulfed in it. I was obsessed with watching YouTube videos; I’d watch makeup videos for nine hours a day. Then, I started practicing and getting into it at 19.”
Let’s fast forward a bit. You’ve worked with many celebrities, but it isn’t easy to book celebrity clients. Who was your first celebrity client and how did you get the gig?
“My very first celebrity client was Big Sean. I had a job at a makeup boutique, and they fired me but didn’t tell why. And I just prayed — not long after, I got a call to do men’s grooming for Big Sean for a campaign. I got the job because a friend who knew him personally referred me. I took it as a sign, and from there, I started diving into my entrepreneurship.”
You’re growing and bringing on more artists to work in The Beat Lounge. How do you deal with clients who only want to work with you?
“We’re still in that phase because I’m traveling a lot to L.A. People know when they come to me, they’re going to get professionalism, good customer service, and quality. They know how particular I am, how professional I am. And they know I wouldn’t have anyone working under me who doesn’t have those same qualities. This automatically makes my clients trust me.”
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What’s the key to making The Beat Lounge the place to get your makeup done in Detroit?
“It’s a luxurious experience. I have the lounge area with cozy, beautiful chairs and I serve you with wine or water. And there’s music to set a joyful vibe. Each artist has a personal vanity, so our clients can watch the whole process from start to finish. A vanity gives me that Hollywood feel. Some salons don’t allow clients to see themselves and the process. I think [seeing your transformation] is the most special part. It’s a fun process for them to watch and you get to feel like the star of your own show. You are the celebrity. You are the star here.”
Speaking of treating women like stars, how do you uplift the Black community?
“By bringing women together and promoting empowerment, self-love, beauty, and self-care. Getting your makeup done is a form of self-care. Clients tell me about the hard times they’ve been going through in the pandemic. And they say, ‘I wanted to come in here to take care of myself. I need a self-care day.’ They thank me for making them feel beautiful because they had forgotten, or they thank me for being a part of their special day and making them feel the most beautiful they’ve ever felt in their lives."
Let’s talk about business. What’s one of the biggest mistakes you’ve made in business?
“I’ve been a full-time entrepreneur for six years, but I’ve been doing makeup professionally for nine years. I’ve learned the power of contracts. I used to do [verbal] agreements and that doesn’t work. I’d get myself into sticky situations. In business, you learn why having contracts is so important. It’s something you and the client can always refer to.”
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There is competition in every industry, how do you stay focused to show up and own your lane?
“I don’t look at what other people are doing. I focus on my brand and my work. What I’m doing is my mission and my purpose, and I just stick with that. I don’t compare myself or compete with anybody else. I was sent here to help these women, and that pushes me. I’m making women feel seen and heard and valued and loved. I have no choice but to show up. It’s not about me at this point. It’s bigger than me.”
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