It is our goal to look and feel beautiful – through many different ways, because of many different reasons. And there’s definitely nothing wrong with that. To feel beautiful is to be confident about oneself, to know our worth and value, and to love what we see within us.
And over the years, the issue of the usage of cosmetics among women has always been a ground for debate. Many say it empowers women; some say it only pushes for more self-hate. The arguments are endless – and nobody seems to be winning. The significance of using cosmetics all depends on how and why is it is used.
But for 19-year-old internet personality, Chea Sreynea, putting on make-up goes beyond wanting to be beautiful. Make-up is a form of art, says Sreynea in her famous YouTube channel. She showcases her talent in make-up and raises the standard of creativity through her make-up tutorial videos.
Sreynea doesn’t own a salon, like the other make-up artists we know. But she makes use of what technology has gifted this generation – digital opportunities. She puts on make-up, records it and uploads the video on her YouTube channel, Srey Nea , which now has over 83,000 subscribers.
Many netizens praised her make-up skills and how her videos provide encouraging tips for women who want to try cosmetics but are not sure what to do.
“Make-up is all about women choosing her own beauty, her own self. For instance, some women like to look sharp with a think eyeliner. It makes them feel more confident and sophisticated. There are also some women who prefer cute looks because they feel great inside when they look simple but elegant. Women can choose; they’re free to do that. This is where make-up comes into the scene – cosmetics enable women to look however they want to look, as long as they’re feeling confident. You see, make-up is a form of self-expression. So it’s really important that we allow women to practice their freedom, and we can start with simple things such as make-up.”
But Chea Sreynea’s success as a vlogger didn’t come without struggles. She feared people’s reactions on her videos, thinking many would say she’s wasting her time in doing useless things.
“I was scared at first. I was scared that I would be criticised for posting videos of myself applying make-up. I was afraid that people would tell me that I am self-centered and narcissistic, that I’m a girl who’s obsessed with her own beauty. I didn’t really believe that my skill is enough for me to be called an artist, and that there’s a future in this industry I’m choosing,” says Chea Sreynea.
“But those fears disappeared when I glanced back and saw my mother. She is my core inspiration. She’s the one who pushes me to reach for my dreams, whatever they are. More than being a mom, she is my best friend, my adviser, my source of motivation.
“I’ve experienced several criticisms and judgments in social media, which made me hesitate to create my YouTube channel, even when I know that I am deeply passionate about make-up. But I remember when my mom tapped my shoulder and told me that I have only one life, so I should do something that would make me feel most alive as long as I don’t harm other people.”
Because of her mother, Chea Sreynea has now gone far in her dream, becoming one of the most famous vloggers and social media influencers in the Kingdom.
To Chea Sreynea, her make-up studio is the place that she would called herself a “wizard girl”.
“I would say it’s a ‘magic place’, where I can turn myself into different kinds of personas. I was born with this kind of passion. The moment I play with different colour palettes and makeup-tools, I feel like I become a magician or a wizard. I can even turn myself into a fairy if I want to through make-up.”
Chea Sreynea believes that having a decent look is essential in living a decent life. In a world where first impressions are based on physical appearance, it is important to look your best. Many may try to invalidate this, but isn’t our appearance – or how we present ourselves – a proof of our self-esteem and confidence? When you know you look good, you feel confident in facing people wherever, whenever. Thus, giving you the chance to connect to the world in a healthy and positive way.
“Having a decent look is important simply because we are all attracted to beautiful things. For example, when you had a bad day at work and then you suddenly see a wonderful work of art, you would surely feel much better inside. This applies to oneself. Whatever the circumstances are, when you look and feel good about yourself, you will definitely feel better.”
It’s all just about how you handle yourself – alone or in front of other people, Chea Sreynea says. It’s important to stay true to who you are, but ready to improve.