We had the good fortune of connecting with Nicole Bruno and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Nicole, what do you attribute your success to?
I believe the most important factor of my success is being faithful to myself, my clients, and my family . Honesty is the best policy . Making sure you can commit to a project not only by actually doing the work, but believing in what I’m doing as I do it. I love making every client feel amazing after they leave my chair. Everyone ! From Children’s FacePaint to Brides and even Special FX makeup. Always being on time and communicating with my clients making them lifelong clients instead of a quick buck is the best commitment you can make.
Once you have proved to the client once that you keep your word, word of mouth becomes the best advertisement you can have. People believing in you to do the best is an awesome feeling to have and when you have that standard for every job or creation the expectation of yourself always remains high. Even through hard times I try and teach my kids as well that a great business will always bounce back and never stop trying and believing . Every day I strive to be a better human for my kids too! Wanting my husband and children to be proud of me is the best motivation for my success. Committing to growing to the top and being the best to prove anything is possible if you put your heart to it !
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Getting All Dolled Up isn’t just for others to acknowledge you clean up well, but it’s about taking the time to take care of yourself . A lot of the clients I have made I believe I have made for life . When I meet a client I make sure to communicate with them and give them the attention they deserve from the minute we start talking until after the job is done . Making a quick bucks isn’t for me ! I want to make forever clients and continue to learn and offer more services. When a client leaves my chair I want them to feel the best they have ever felt. Have confidence and vibrancy to fill a room. I want the client to feel comfortable and acknowledge I listened to what they asked for giving them a unique and custom application with the best products and sanitation service I can . Being a makeup artist is one thing, but combining hair and makeup with licensing and state certification let’s you know I care to do it right!
Anyone can open an Instagram and love makeup but opening a business and doing the work to do it right sets me apart for a lot of artists down here honestly. School not only teaches you how to properly maintain your makeup and keep it sanitary, but school teaches you how to understand skin tones, oil conditions, undertones, and face structures. Understanding face shapes and contour will make or break the application. Being able to create a one of a kind flawless better version of each client for each circumstance takes time and patience . Hair and Makeup for a bride turns into makeup for maternity shoots, then facepainting for their kids parties, then the glam parties for teens and makeup for proms to weddings once again . First impressions are lasting impressions and being able to continue to understand each vision and transition your art to keep your clients is something they will remain loyal to forever . Word of mouth is the best marketing strategy in the world. I live going the extra mile for everyone of my clients and my contractors. I was told in makeup school having everything and saving the day because you happened to bring a little extra never killed anyone . So do the right thing and go the extra mile, bring a steamer to the shoot or a balloon for the birthday girl.
Covid has definitely put a complete damper on my business. It’s been absolutely humbling and devastating. Covid hit at the busiest time of my career. I went from being booked solid for months to out of business overnight. I had to see what else I could offer and What else was still operating . Kids production was still around and events for kids were in demand so I decided to open a PG version of All Dolled Up and call it Sunshine Shots Photography. Here is where I have spent the last year of quarantine doing private events for kids that are Covid safe and up to cdc codes. I did two Santa Clause events for Christmas where the kids were able to come and have a 1 on 1 experience with santa and get gifts . I have linked with World of Kids who are the best kids agency around if you ask me, and they run my ad for me making it possible to do kids headshots for their models ! What a dream come true right ! Never give up is what I learned!
No matter what, be true to yourself and to your clients and friends and especially the ones you love ! Find your nitch ! Find your way ! Just keep swimming ! My next adventures are soon to come ! One will be offering a complete package for Adult/ Kids parties Makeup and Hair , face paint ( body paint ) , glitter tattoos, tinsel hair , airbrush tattoos! Additions like video, photography , decorations, cake, cookies, balloons arches, catering , bartender and Server ! Think about it ! Want it ! Make it happen! You only fail if you never try if you ask me ! Sometimes it seems like the end of the world but maybe it was time to rebrand myself . Everything happens for a reason, we may not know the reason, but one day you will look back and laugh and it will all make sense .
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.
This… this is great ! Well I’m going to line up this to do with kids and without, cause there is no sense of a best friend traveling to see you without some kind of mischief. We live right off the beach In Fort Lauderdale so I would definitely try and convince them to stay at the North Beach Village instead of a big hotel to get the real vibes of Flocal Living . Then we would hang out in the pool and soak up all the vitamin D in the world reminiscing about our old Jersey tans before we had kids and had plenty of time for tanning booths and the sun. Setting up a campground on the sand is a must! People from the cold and north need to have that connection with Mother Earth and they just don’t so getting the toes in the water and butts in the sand for the kids would be a few days too. Being in the sun is exhausting so I would have to head to amazing lunches and dinners where I know food will be quick, accurate and worth my hard earned money .
Definitely Poke Lolo for some Poke bowls and Chicken cone for another great lunch or dinner day ! Casablanca would definitely have to be our classy date night where we enjoy the ocean without the kids and some nice wine ! A night for the men that is a must would be a las olas run! Starting with an absurd amount of meat at Chima, yes please , and a stroll to all the best bars and martinis in town . Ten years ago we would have strolled downtown to the dark side and Fat Cats but I’m not too sure if I would turn into a pumpkin . Flippos would have to be a fun day and at least walk to the new playground on the beach ! I don’t think there is any point of coming to Fort Lauderdale if your not smelling the ocean and feeling the breeze for the majority of it. Hitting up the Hollywood peir wouldn’t ever be a bad day . Renting some bikes or things the kids will probably fight us to have fun on always sounds like a great idea ! Lol Maybe a Sunday Funday at the Ward and eating at Rivertail for an early dinner and magical cocktail to end the journey .
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?
Ahhhhhh… that’s a hard one for me to narrow . There were a lot of years in life where I’m sure people questioned me ever doing anything productive in my life . I never took the easy road. My husband believes in me, taking the time and patience to let me start a business. I was a starving artist for a while. It’s real. Through thick and thin and good and bad jobs paid and not, he always just said ok baby. If that’s what will make you happy. Inspiring me to be a better human for both my beautiful children and giving me the ability to be home with them and raise them myself is the best gift I’ve been given. My kids are my number one fans and definitely deserve a shout out. Not only do they believe in me but they have found a passion for events acting and working on sets as well. They are my biggest fans and my best motivation. My next shout out would have to be two the two men who gave me a chance before anyone else ever did . They must have seen something I didn’t but after the years becoming business partners with then has been a dream come true . Brandon Rudich from BRP studios and Tyler Molinari from Posche models north gave me my first hair and makeup jobs ever . Allowing me to walk Into to their studio and do art on their clients almost 7 years ago has been my life changing experience I never thought I would ever have . And I am forever grateful for all.
Broadcast Beats Studio SunshineShots Photography BRP Studios JFS Studio