Welcome back to our Favourites Feature! The Blog Series where we delve into the lives and minds of our favourite MUA's, Bloggers and Influencers, where we talk all things make up, mental health and life in the spotlight!
We are proud to say that is it another wonderfully exciting month for our More Than Make Up features; this month we are shining a light on the beautiful soul that is Katie Harding from @Katieemmabeauty.
Katie is 26, lives in London and is a very talented make up and skincare blogger. We have been following Katie’s journey with makeup for quite some time, and we love seeing her share her warm personality along with her tips and advice. If you are looking for a heart warming read that is bursting with inspiration, then look no further than our interview with the lovely Katieemmabeauty.
What is your full name and where are you from?
My full name is Katie Emma Harding, and I'm from Bedfordshire, but currently live in London.
Tell us a little bit about your background and your story...
I grew up on a flower nursery... so spent most of my childhood running around, making dens, and generally annoying my parents. I then went on to study Music at University and now work in Digital Marketing for the West End - and absolutely love it!
When did you discover your love for make up and how did this affect your life?
I watched Zoella on Celebrity Bake Off in 2015, discovered there was a collection of people called YouTubers, and fell down the rabbit hole of makeup tutorials. So, yes, I didn't start wearing it till I was 19-20 years old. I was dreadful- but we live and we learn! I became slightly obsessed, and that's when I started my blog.
Was blogging something that you were passionate about from the beginning or did you just fall into it?
I started blogging at University. I absolutely adored it, and I used to spend hours avoiding my degree by doing my blog- ha! And it actually began to get a lot of traffic... Since moving out to the big wide work World, my blog has been something I've come and gone with. But I've since moved over to Instagram and, to be honest, this is where I spend most of my time!
How did you decide on make up being the main focus of your blog?
I really wanted to document my discovery in makeup - documenting products I'd tried and loved or hated, tips I'd picked up, looks I'd created and generally things I'd learned along the way.
Have you come across any resistance with your makeup journey, and if so, how have you coped/overcome it?
To be honest, not a whole lot of people in my life know about it. When someone important in my life found out about it while I was at University (won't name and shame), they weren't the most supportive and told me I should've been focusing more on my degree! Luckily, par that moment, I've always surrounded myself with people who inspire and empower me and they've stood by me and always supported it.And these days, Alex (my boyf) gets more excited about my blog/Insta milestones than I do!
Does doing your make up and Instagram page help your mental well-being?
Most of the time. Instagram is a trickly little devil, and sometimes working out how to keep up with the algorithm is so disheartening. But, the people I've met through the channel, and all the convos I have through comments and dms are so uplifting. I've been so lucky to have never had hate comments, and the comments sections of my selfies in particular are basically one big hype session!
Can you tell us a little more about your experiences with mental health?
I've struggled on and off with mental health since I was about 15-16. I was at my worst at 17, and missed a batch of my A-Level exams due to being signed off as not mentally ready for them (I'm a bit of a perfectionist, and they were worried how I'd have coped if I didn't get As across the board).Over the years, I've learnt to (as weird as this sounds) care less. Mistakes are ok and they're how to grow. If you focus entirely on your weight you'll never be happy. And ultimately fill your life full of things you love and enjoy.
How has your makeup journey helped you as a whole?
On the every day, I compare putting my makeup on to putting my war paint on. Not that I'm getting ready to fight anyone. But, it makes me ready for the day. When I wear makeup, I'm then in the mindset to get stuff done. And then, when I'm sitting there for hours playing with colour, it's a creative outlet. It allows me the space and medium to experiment and... I think I look great 😉
Where do you find inspiration for your looks?
I recently unfollowed 1,000s of accounts in a bid to only follow Instagram accounts that truly inspire me. It's still a work in progress... but honestly, my main inspiration is from other creators. I follow so many talented people who inspire me to give something a go.. and sometimes it works out and sometimes it doesn't- the latter you don't see a whole lot of!
Who and what would you say are your biggest influences?
My dad is the biggest influence in my life. We don't always see eye to eye (we're too similar and take everything too personally), but he works so darn hard, he lives by the ethos I've carried into my adulthood "find something you love to do and get someone to pay you to do it", and he always has some project on the go!
How do you tackle university living in London and constantly creating content?
I went to University in Southampton, but the biggest tip I'd wish I'd taken on more when I went to University is to make the most of it! I feel like I didn't truly live the University life until my third year and it's one of my only real regrets in life. Join that society, go to the pub with mates after lectures, enjoy your lie-ins, organise homely cinema nights... you get the idea! (not everything has to involve alcohol) And in terms of constantly creating content, I do take a fair few breaks... but batch taking content will be your biggest help. Especially when you work during most of the light hours of the day, set aside an hour or two on a weekend to capture all the content for the week, edit everything, write the captions and save them in drafts... and then all you have to do it post them throughout the week!
If you could speak to your younger self, what advice would you give?
Enjoy not having to pay rent or bills! In all seriousness, life really does get better. At some point, after being locked in your house for a year, you'll learn to really love what's important in life; your friends, your family, your freedom and your happiness. You'll find a job where you feel valued and challenged. You'll live in a flat full of light and life. You'll meet a guy who pushes you to be the best version of yourself. And... you'll love food SO much that your clothes won't fit anymore, but you'll also learn to be totally ok with it.
How do you aim to inspire others in a similar situation?
Sounds cheesy, but make a list of things you like or love about yourself. Because, I guarantee when you sit and think about it (you may need someone to help point them out at first, or it may take a long time because it's slightly unnatural) there will be just as many, if not more, things you like about yourself as you don't!
Which of your looks has been your favourite?
I actually really love one of my most recent looks with the green and blue moment. I wore it to Mighty Hoopla on 4 June, and had the best time, so it also has happy memories attached to it!
What is your proudest moment throughout your makeup career?
I mean, this moment is pretty cool! 😉
Charlie Betty Beauty’s Earth Palette was modelled on representing the Earth element - in the 5 elements of earth, air, fire, water and aether, what element would you say you resonate with the most and why?
Oh, totally water. I was such a water baby and was that kid who was always swimming along the bottom of the pool. I also LOVE showers, baths, swimming in the sea and generally being in the water!
What is your favourite shade in the Earth Palette?
I LOVE the greens and they're what drew me to the palette in the first place... Ivy is the most stunning green shimmer! But Capricorn is the most underrated shade... it has a stunning gold fleck in it and it looks stunning as a wash over the eye!
Charlie Betty beauty recently released our brand new eyelash line. Of the 3 brand new designs, which one is your favourite and why?
100% Fleur. They're fluttery and long (just my style of lashes), but they're also the perfect length! They're not too long where they're then awkward to apply and you have to cut them down, but they're also slightly longer than a corner lash. Just so pretty!
Do you tend to purchase makeup from companies based on their messaging and their values, or mainly based on what you are loving at the time?
Apart from the odd exception (looking at you Maybelline Sky High Mascara), I tend to buy cruelty-free. Past that, I tend to focus more on real people's reviews as to whether a brand or a product is any good.
What new product would you love to see or experiment with this year?
I'm still on the hunt to find the lip liner brand or formula for me. So that's deffo on my list!
Finally, what’s a quote that you live by?
I've already touched on it.. and I'm sure dad got it from somewhere else, but "find something you love to do and get someone to pay you for it". Your job (whether self-employed or employed) is most of your awake life... so you may as well love it!
Thank you for such an enjoyable and heart warming interview Katie, you make us so inspired to continue following our hearts and to focus on doing whatever makes us happy. You can follow Katie on instagram by clicking here, and you can also see her YouTube content by clicking right here!
Don’t hesitate to let us know your favourite MUAs, Bloggers and Influencers in the comments below. We are always looking for inspirational people to include in our More Than Make Up Features. If you missed last month’s Feature of @effys_place, don’t panic, you can view it by clicking here! Or you can subscribe to our blog today and never miss another upload!