We had the good fortune of connecting with Mary Iris and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Mary, how has your background shaped the person you are today?
I was born and raised in San Diego. When I was 18 I started working as a medical assistant administering shots and phlebotomy. Growing up in a Filipino family, my mother encouraged me to work in healthcare. So I attended Cal Poly Pomona and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in nutritional science. Thereafter, I decided to stay and live in Los Angeles. But ever since I was young I was very interested in beauty and skincare. I used to read so many glamour magazines like Seventeen magazine, J-14, and teen vogue. There would be a segment of beauty home remedies like putting mayonnaise in my hair to get that extra shine or putting raw egg whites as a face mask to minimize my pores lol. I remember wanting to work as a makeup artist at the MAC store but I kept going down the medical field route. Now in my early 30’s, the beauty industry has changed a lot. I finally decided to do what I’m most passionate about by becoming a permanent makeup artist to help others feel more confident with their appearance.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
It was a start of a new year, 2022 and I had a resolution that I wanted to make something of myself other than being a mother, which I adore, however I wanted to build a name for myself out there. I put my life on hold going to college for seven years and taking care of my kids. I felt like it was time. I signed up for a brow training course and soon enough was working on clients. Starting a small business is definitely not easy. Everything is a learning process and it takes time and dedication. But if you do what you love then it won’t feel like work. I’m making an impact on a person to feel more confident and that confidence will shine and be unnoticed.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Growing up in San Diego, there are beaches everywhere nearby. I lived less than 5 miles away from Mission Beach. The perfect day would start out having breakfast at the OG Broken Yolk in Pacific Beach. Then go for a beach trail hike at Torrey Pines in La Jolla overlooking the ocean. For lunch I’d recommend the San Diego Pier Cafe at Seaport Village. It’s basically a house on stilts in the water overlooking Coronado bridge. Fresh seafood, bloody Mary’s, and an amazing sunset view. Then for nightlife is definitely the Gaslamp District in the heart of San Diego. One of my favorite spots is Tipsy Crow. It’s a 3-story building with a bar on every floor. First floor is a billiard lounge, on the second/ground level are live bands that play cover songs, and the basement is a mini club. Everything in one place!

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My determination to work hard came from my mother. She was a single parent and worked long hours, day and night to provide and give me the essentials to thrive. My continuous support would be from my husband. Through all my phases in life, he has encouraged me to “just do it.” My love and commitment to keep going would be for my 2 little boys. To show them what it means to work hard and enjoy life doing what you love. Lastly, the encouragement of my mentor, family, and friends who keeps cheering me on.

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