Athena Efstathiou came from a strict Greek family so her job in beauty wasn’t taken seriously or accepted by them for years, but makeup was considered a form of self therapy to Athena, the only thing that got her through a difficult time unsure of who she was or what her calling was in life. Like a meditation almost, she would spend hours and hours in her room practicing looks, completely transforming herself which naturally boosted her self confidence and helped her overcome her depression.

Athena’s family is very spiritual, her grandmother was a healer and uncle is a monk, she believes she has a calling to perform reiki and heal her clients through her art, like colour therapy. In a world where the media and society highlights imperfections or suggests that we should look a certain way, Athena believes in doing her bit to help people make them feel good about themselves and building self esteem, by accentuating their natural and unique beauty, “the woman who first sits down in my chair to the woman who leaves are two very different people. The transformation in their energy and confidence is amazing”.

We spent some time with this powerhouse to find out more…

Tell us about the journey that lead you to becoming an international makeup artist…

Makeup started as a hobby, a way for me to escape reality; I was working a dead end job, entirely unhappy with my life, not knowing what I wanted to do or who I even was the only thing that made me happy was spending hours in my room trying different makeup looks. It was like a form of meditation of me. Slowly people started to notice my skill and they would asked me to do their makeup! I then quickly realised this was the job for me. Against my family’s will, I got professionally trained and worked on a variety of different makeup counters until I finally took the jump and became a freelance makeup artist.

What has been the biggest learning curve since launching your brand?

Things that you want won’t always initially go to plan, but don’t be disheartened. Without failure, we don’t learn how to succeed. It took time, but having a positive attitude encouraged me to take advantage of opportunities, things will work out – Trust in the universe.

During lockdown you really thrived, how did you remain positive and pivot so successfully?

Lockdown has been a journey of self discovery. Suddenly my life went from being super busy and non-stop, everyday brought a new adventure… to being dead quiet. I was forced to spend time with myself, understand who I was as an artist and an individual. I then quickly realised I had a lot of healing to do. My panic attacks and anxiety got really bad. I concentrated on making content to keep myself busy, motivated and educated. I also started healing sessions with my reiki healer, she helped me change my life. My mindset changed, my career improved snd I started healing myself and woking on my self development.

What advice would you offer to aspiring makeup artists?

Don’t give up – ever. Hard work and talent will take you far. Also never stop learning, take any and every opportunity to learn new things to stay ahead of the game.

The beauty industry is plagued with a lot of negativity and pressure, how do you remain positive?

I focus on myself and stay away from drama. Focus on your own happiness and become the best version of yourself, blessings will follow. It sounds cheesy, but if you love yourself enough the day-to-day pressures (through things like social media) won’t affect the mindset and drag you down into doubting your skills or self-worth.

Looking back since launching your brand, is there anything you would do different?

I don’t regret anything. We have to go through what we go through and make mistakes in order to learn and become better people and also better in our careers. Everything we do is a learning curve. Take the lessons on board.

Talk us through an average day in your life…

Generally everyday was different in my pre-Covid life, I could be on shoots all day, on set, attending brand launches and meeting clients. Since lockdown, I usually wake up and do a grounding meditation, answer client emails and make content all day for brands for my social media platforms, and of course try and test new beauty & skincare products. I could be working on creative ideas till about 2am! I love it.

How much has social media played a role in the success of your brand?

Social media has been amazing. It really helped me to get my brand “out there”, so many people have reached out to me because of it! My social platforms are like a portfolio for me, available instantly with a click of a button. Brands and clients use my platforms to see examples of my work and makeup looks, which is important when working on new collaborations. I also love engaging with my followers and clients on my platforms to learn what they love (or don’t love!) about my work, I think feedback is really important for businesses to grow.

What is your go-to quote when lacking motivation?

‘Everything is always working out for me’. I never usually lack motivation out of laziness, it’s generally out of fear and self-doubt. Sometimes I need a shake and a reminder, so this quote helps me through!

What’s next for the business?

I have lots of exciting things in the pipeline, so watch this space. I’m hoping to continue to grow and inspire my audience I have also nearly finished my Reiki practitioner qualification so I wish to help others through the power of reiki. In a world where the media and society highlights imperfections or suggests that we should look a certain way, I believe in doing my bit to help women feel good about themselves and build self esteem, by accentuating their natural and unique beauty. The woman who first sits down in my chair to the woman who leaves are two very different people. The transformation in their energy and confidence is amazing.

What does self care mean to you?

It means putting myself first. It’s quite easy to forget about yourself when you’re busy and working on your brand or business so taking time away from the screen to go for a walk, eating well, meditating and resting works for me.

Follow this KWEEN and keep up to date with everything she is working on via @goddessbeautymakeup


Northern girl Laura is the epitome of a true entrepreneur. Laura’s spirit for adventure and passion for people blaze through House of Coco. She founded House of Coco in 2014 and has grown it in to an internationally recognised brand whilst having a lot of fun along the way. Travel is in her DNA and she is a true visionary and a global citizen.

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