Miami Carnival is set for this weekend. We caught up with Makeup Artist Danielle Aka Pecker/Woodpecker, who shared some makeup tips for masqueraders who are in the Parade of Bands on Sunday, October 9th. Danielle is better known as Pecker or Woodpecker, a self-taught makeup artist from the Caribbean based in South Florida.
Tell us your journey on how you became a Makeup Artist?
“My journey to becoming an MUA started on Instagram with my live show “MakeUpn Chill with Woodpecker,”; a weekly tutorial for an audience of eager learners and clients whom I dubbed Chillers. Being from the beautiful island of Jamaica has influenced the exotic vibrancy in the makeup looks I prefer to create. I am passionate about dramatic art on the blank canvas that is a face. However, the versatility allows me to easily create exceptional Natural Glam as well.
I believe in the transformative power of makeup and its use to express self. Each ‘Chiller’ leaves the chair feeling either glamorous or bold.“
What’s your connection to Jamaica, and where do you currently live?
When I was younger, my parents decided to move to Jamaica, their homeland. I lived on that beautiful island for most of my life. Jamaica and its people have had the most significant influence on my life, and quite frankly…I AM A JAMAICAN. I’m currently living in South Florida.
How did you get started as a Makeup Artist?
I always wanted to wear makeup as a child and teen, but that wasn’t allowed in my home. Later, while at university, I began to dabble in what I thought was makeup. I was a hot mess. In 2020, when the pandemic began to affect the western world, I started watching YouTube makeup tutorials to pass the never-ending time I had. I practiced what I had learned and continued learning as much as possible. And well, here I am today.
Tell us about your Makeup n Chill IG show?
So Makeup & Chill with Woodpecker (AKA Pecker) was born in April 2020. While practicing and learning new techniques in makeup, I would post pictures of the look I had completed on Instagram. A good friend of mine kept encouraging me to make my tutorials, start a YouTube channel and do Live tutorials on IG. I took her up on the encouragement and did weekly shows on IG. In the beginning, it was me showing off a new skill in makeup that I’d learned, but soon after, I had weekly guests, other talented MUAs, who would create a look based on the theme of that week, all while having a glass, or 2, or wine and chilling and chatting. It has been some time since there has been a show because most have returned to work and become very busy again.
What was the first high-end makeup product you ever bought?
The first high-end makeup product I ever bought was from NARS.
What advice would you give other MUAs trying to grow their following on Instagram?
As an MUA still trying to grow a following on Instagram, just be authentically yourself, keep up with trends, and be consistent.
What do you see as one of the biggest trends as it relates to makeup for Carnival Masqueraders?
To me, the biggest carnival makeup trend has been rhinestones and face gems. However, this year I’ve seen that Cut Creases are trendy as well.
What are five essential makeup tips for masqueraders staying fresh during the 2022 Miami Carnival Parade?
1. Book a makeup artist to get you right on that day. I am still taking bookings and have some slots still open. Book with me via the link in my bio @pecker.mua on IG. If you can’t…
2. Make sure to do proper skin prep before applying any makeup. This includes sunscreen. Do not forget to moisturize, and DO NOT FORGET SUNSCREEN.
3. Use products that will leave your face, Matte. Stay away from dewy products on that day. You are in the sun all day; you don’t want to look shiny as soon as you step out on the road.
4. Set every step of the makeup process. You want that makeup to last you all day, so set with powder and/or spray after every step.
5. Secure your gems with spirit gum.
Bonus! Stay hydrated! Smile and tek Nuff picha!
Favorite thing about Jamaica?
My favorite thing about Jamaica? Do we even have enough space for this list? Lol. I’ll simply say culture. That should cover everything.
How can people reach you?
I can be reached
Miami Carnival Signature events:
- Junior Carnival – October 1, 2022, at Central Broward Regional Park, Lauderhill, FL
- Panorama – October 7, 2022, at Central Broward Regional Park, Lauderhill, FL
- J’ouvert – October 8, 2022, at Miami-Dade County Fair & Exposition, Inc., Miami, FL
- Miami Carnival Parade of Bands and Soca Concert – October 9, 2022, at Miami-Dade County Fair & Exposition, Inc., Miami, FL