To Top

Check Out Deidre Mattingly’s Story

Today we’d like to introduce you to Deidre Mattingly.

Hi Deidre, please kick things off for us with an introduction to yourself and your story.
Growing up, dancing was my passion. I started dance when I could walk and continued on throughout my entire adolescent life. Hair, makeup and fashion were always a part of performing and my everyday life. I was always that ballerina in class with the unnatural hair color, weird nails and different style. I knew early on that I wanted to do makeup professionally for film and productions but experienced some pushback for not going the ‘average college route’. Being the stubborn natured person I am, it didn’t deter me but pushed me further into it. After graduating from Aveda Cosmetology school in Minneapolis MN, I moved down to FL to attend Joe Blasco Makeup Artistry School. Going to school with other artists and getting to finally ‘create’ was such a torch to my flame. I fell in love with special effects and being the ONLY girl in class who hated horror movies, geeked out at all the cuts and gore effects! My first taste of commerical work was starting at the golf channel at 19 years old. I think I threw up just about every morning for weeks from the nerves (or also could be from waking up at 230am everyday!) After realizing that Florida wasn’t for me, I moved to NC where my family had relocated. I fell in love with the area and finally found a place that felt like home. Having known not a single person outside of my two parents… starting out was harder than I imagined. I worked at a few spas and tried building my network on the side, along with gaining some work/life experience. I may have had big goals but I was still only 20 and little experience to fall onto. I ended up finding a local MUA with over 20 years of experience and asked to meet with her.

I basically begged her to let me follow her around and clean her brushes and learn from her… to my complete surprise, she said yes! Denise Hutter ended up teaching me so much about the business, about life and about being a badass. Her strength and talents have shaped me into the businesswoman I am today and couldn’t be any more grateful! After a lot of bumps along the way and finding a ‘rock bottom’, I quit my spa job for good and decided to finally put all my energy into being a freelance makeup artist. To date, one of the scariest decisions I ever made but also the absolute best one. After about two years of networking, tears, bills and more tears – I finally could say I was making a living doing what I love. Freelance life isn’t for the faint of heart but every day, I am excited for what’s coming next. Having now completed two full-length feature films, I’m dying to work on my next feature! I’ve worked with so many amazing, talented, inspiring people and can only imagine what the future might hold. Beyond blessed for where I am today and for not giving in to society (or myself) and taking the path less traveled.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
“I know I’m on the right path, because things stopped being easy”

For starters, it’s hard to remember very many people who DID support my decision not going to college. I knew my parents would support me regardless but it did give me doubts about the career I was choosing and if I could truly be successful.

After my ex of three years left me unexpectedly while living in Asheville, I felt completely broken. I fell into depression and moved back in with my family at 24 years old, feeling like a complete failure.

I hadn’t had the career I hoped for, the marriage I thought I would, the ability to support myself financially and living under my parent’s roof again.. After struggling for some time with those feelings, I decided that that was enough. With nothing left to lose, I was going all-in for the career I dreamed of. Unfortunately, another setback was my parents moving out of state shortly after my decision to be a full time freelancer. So here I was. A 24 yr old, depressed, anxious, alone, start-up freelance business owner- just barely off the ground and no clue how I was going to pay rent. I sat on the floor in my apartment and had a complete anxiety attack.

I decided the next morning to take all this anxiety and fear and turn it into energy and momentum. There was a fire sparked that propelled me forward to prove to myself, and to the people who doubted me, I could do it.

Another big obstacle I faced was I hated doing hair. For seven years of my career, I avoided it as much as possible, even though I had a cosmetologist license. Makeup always came naturally for me, but hair was a struggle bus- so I just never did it. After so long of avoiding my fears, I realized business would double if I just added hair to my services. This was such a mental obstacle and it TERRIFIED me. Slowly but surely, I forced myself to start doing updos. Well as it turned out, I really enjoyed it! I couldn’t believe I waited so long and stressed so much about something I could have been doing (and enjoying!) The whole time.

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
Natural beauty is where I find myself specializing in. Clients come to me because they don’t want to look ‘cakey/overdone’. My goal is always to let my clients shine, not be out-shined by their makeup. I strive to make clients more comfortable in their own skin and educate about good skincare practices- because a good canvas is where it all begins. I truly enjoy that time I have someone in my chair… I want to know WHO they are. I’m not one for small talk, let’s talk about their passions and their difficulties. I love building a connection with each person I work with and finding what makes each of them beautiful from the inside-out. I believe we all have to do better about building each other up and if I can help boost one person’s self-confidence, then I’m doing my job.

We love surprises, fun facts and unexpected stories. Is there something you can share that might surprise us?
Something surprising most people don’t know about me is that I’m pretty introverted. I’m a huge animal lover, so most of my spare time is spent with my little circus of 2 cats and a dog I recently adopted. I love my little furr-fam and the mild chaos it brings! But after full days on set and lots of socializing, I need time to recharge. Best way for me to zen out is on a nature walk, kayaking or even fishing!

Contact Info:

Image Credits
Dalvin Nichols 8 Bit photography Michelle Lynn Photography Robert Snow Photo- red bull Art by Courtney Winter Joe Reale – Midtown magazine Jonathon Okafo – Dagtype Films LLC

Suggest a Story: VoyageRaleigh is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

More in Uncategorized