Our latest guest on Industry Insider is Olivia Nicolaou, a Makeup Artist & Hair Stylist working in the Sports TV industry!
Tell us about yourself, what is your current role and what roles have you done previously?
My name is Olivia Nicolaou. I am a Makeup Artist & Hair Stylist working mainly in the Sports TV industry. I have previously worked for BT Sport, BBC Sport, Amazon Prime Sport, FIFA and I am currently the Head Makeup Artist for the Champions League on CBS Sport.
Whilst working with these channels, I have had the pleasure of working at major sports events within football, boxing, golf and Formula 1. I have also worked on music videos, dramas, films and entertainment TV.
What do you do in your current role?
My current role as a Makeup Artist and Hair Stylist at CBS Sport involves taking care of all the talent before, during and after air times, and making sure they are TV ready before they step on set.
What does a normal week look like for you?
As the Champions League is only shown a couple of days a week, I have time to do other jobs and have a vast portfolio which includes private clients, events, weddings, photoshoots or filming and sometimes I get to enjoy a day off! Every week is totally different which keeps me on my toes.
How did you end up where you are right now? When did you know you wanted to work in sport?
I started as a Trainee Makeup Artist about 6 years ago at another sports channel. I made tea, cleaned everyone’s makeup brushes and workstations throughout the day, collected and warmed up their dinner, did makeup orders and kept tabs on what we needed in the room.
I never knew I wanted to work in Sports TV until I was there and realised how kind all of the talent were. They are all real team players and I think that comes from being a sportsperson. It’s also a super busy sector to work in as there is always sports going on throughout the year.
What are you excited about in your industry at the moment?
Working in football, I’m seeing a big rise in women’s football and women being included in punditry. Currently at CBS Sport, we have a lead female host and a female guest plus 2-3 males and it’s the first channel I have worked for to have an equal number of genders.
I think it shows that women can still be into looking stylish in nice clothes and makeup, know their stuff with regard to sport and that their knowledge and opinions are respected. I love that!
What is your number one focus when it comes to your work?
Choosing one is really hard! But my number one focus is the person in my chair. I make sure my client is happy, comfortable and that they have that time with me to switch off, prepare themselves or do anything else they need to do.
From playing music I know they enjoy, putting a show/podcast on in the background they like..a chat or silence.. making sure they have tea/coffee, keeping an eye on them throughout the day and sometimes at the end of the day offering them lavender oil hot flannels which is always their favourite part…or maybe because it’s home time, my focus is always fully on my client.
In your area of work, what is something you feel most people don’t talk about or focus on enough?
Just how important we are behind the scenes. I think we make a big difference to how a talent will perform/present in respect of if they look good, then they will feel good.
What is the one piece of advice you would give to someone wanting to work in the sports industry?
There are a lot of late nights, long hours and travelling but it’s definitely not boring! As a makeup artist/hair stylist, it’s important to know how to work with all hair types, skin types and styles.
How to follow Olivia Nicolaou on social media…
Thanks for reading our Industry Insider with Olivia Nicolaou! If you want to read more from the series, you can do so by clicking here.