Christina Doll // City of Prince George
When award winning makeup artist Many Paavola moved back to Prince George from Vancouver to be closer to her family after becoming pregnant with her second child, she didn’t think there would be a market for her services in the city. But once she had settled in, she recognized there was space for her offerings in the city so she opened MP Makeup Artistry.
Paavola specializes in doing makeup for events, including weddings, birthdays, graduations, and holidays, as well as for Halloween and SFX. She can often be spotted at events around town painting the faces of kids and kids at heart. She transforms them into everything from cats to dinosaurs. Her clients are aged 3 – 100, but she says she’s most popular with the 5 – 9 year olds.
Like many small businesses, MP Makeup Artistry has been negatively impacted by the pandemic. Due to the inability to be in close proximity with other people and rules around the hosting of events being changed constantly, she experienced a massive decrease in business. “As a makeup artist and face painter, COVID 19 decimated my business. I wasn’t allowed to book anyone for 4 months, and when I could, I had so many conflicting new rules as to how I could operate my business that I saw about a 70% decrease in business. I was able to keep afloat, but it was very difficult to keep positive and looking forward,” says Paavola.
Despite the hardships she faced, she persevered and modified her business offerings to ensure MP Makeup Artistry could continue operating. She took advantage of virtual technology and used it to offer makeup lessons, drew on her art degree to start offering window painting as one of her services, and painted hundreds of masks. Now that some outdoor events are being permitted, she is once again able to offer face painting services.
MP Makeup Artistry is normally booked months in advance and she’s honoured to have been part of hundreds of events in Prince George. During these trying times, her clients have continued to show their love for her and her phenomenal work: “They have shown me so much support during this very trying time.”
Visit the MP Makeup Artistry website to learn more about Paavola’s services, see additional photos of her work, and to book a service.
About the author: Christina worked first as a radio journalist and then a public relations specialist in her hometown of Prince George for almost a decade before transitioning into her current role of Workforce Development Officer in the Economic Development Division at the City of Prince George. She has public and private sector experience in economic development, external and internal communications, marketing, social media and website management, event planning, and research. She has a passion for storytelling and for providing support to local businesses to help them grow and thrive.