RSVP WOMEN OF STYLE: Niamh Martin
In the latest instalment of the series, Nima brush founder Niamh Martin talks life, career and style with RSVP’s Blathin de Paor
Your path into the industry
I qualified as a makeup artist in 2003 and I’ve been painting faces ever since! As most artists stepping into the industry for the first time, I served my time on makeup counters. After two years between Selfridges, Harrods and Brown Thomas I hit the road as national trainer for a brand called Jane Iredale. It was with this particular position that I got a feel for teaching and I’ve been doing that ever since. I have worked in some of Ireland’s top colleges over the years and still teach on a regular basis. And it was through teaching that I saw niche for high quality brushes at affordable prices. High quality budget makeup brands such as Inglot were popping up all over the place making it affordable for young students starting out to built a kit, but there was no such thing available in the brush field. I wanted to develop a complete set that contained the perfect amount of brushes in all the different shapes and styles necessary to complete a full face from start to finish. Once I got this idea into my head I couldn’t think of anything else and so Nima Brush was born.
Your greatest achievement
I think my greatest achievement this far is NIMA Brush in general! We have just celebrated our third year in business, we have taken home three awards for ‘best professional brush range’ beating massive international brands. Our following and online presence is increasing daily with orders coming in from Australia, Canada, The Netherlands and a big following in Italy and we’re about to launch yet another collection. I’m pretty chuffed with all that so far!!
I love clothes! I absolutely love shopping and putting outfits together. And shoes….oh how I love my shoes! I’m currently nearly 8 months pregnant so right now I have no style!!!! But, when I’m not I love 70’s fashion. High waisted shorts with thick black tights, fitted stripey tops, play suits and jump suits. Playful day dresses with over the knee boots. I love colour also, you’ll never find me in black (apart from the tights!). And the highest heeled boots or shoes you can find!!! I once won a ‘Nina Devito’ painting at an Xpose party for wearing ‘Best Shoes’ of the night. I hang it proud on my wall. Hhmmm, maybe that’s my biggest achievement!
Your Style Icons
I’m not really one for watching celebrity style online or in magazines if I’m honest. I’m more of a people watcher. I watch the people around me and pick up on different style techniques. I’ll never forget working in Brown Thomas watching the style that would come in there on a daily basis. That was my inspiration – the Irish people around me! If I was to pick anyone I’d say Amy Huberman – such a lady, such class and always with a smile on her face. She’s pretty amazing. I’d like to be her when I grow up!
Your favourite piece
Oh so many, where to start. My ‘Mi Moneda’ chain. I got this for Christmas in 2012 when the brand wasn’t even available in the country! I had to order them in from Spain! I’ve two rose gold coins and they just brighten up everything! I have a fabulous Parisian style striped 3/4 length coat from Jasper Conrad that I picked up several years ago. It goes with everything, dresses up the plainest of outfits and I always feel great in it! Love when the autumn weather starts to kick in and I can pull it out of the wardrobe once again! The excitement. My Michael Kors suede tassel handbag is probably another I’d be lost without. Again, this goes with everything, big enough to hold all my millions bits and pieces but doesn’t weigh a ton. And I got this one on sale too! Result!
Your skincare routine
I start every morning with a wake up boost from my Image Vital C Cleanser. Smells of pure oranges and so creamy. This wakes up my skin and myself at the same time! I’ve recently started using an eye cream and serum from Juliette Armand which I’m really liking and I finish off with my Image Prevention + 30spf moisturiser which I bring right down onto my neck and décolletage. SPF is so so Important. At night time, my swear by product is the HOLOS Anti Ageing Facial oil and their ‘Happy Momma’ body oil which I’m currently covering myself with every night before bed to avoid the dreaded pregnancy stretch marks. So far so good! And it smells yummy!
Your favourite products
Oh god we could be here a while with this one. Ok for my base I won’t go near anything other than Jane Iredale Skincare makeup – beautiful coverage and I never need to touch it up all day. Once it’s on it stays put. Loving the NARS liquid highlighter in ‘Copacabana’ which I picked up recently. Sometimes I’ll mix this with my foundation or pop on beforehand for a really natural glow. My brows are a bit of an obsession and I recently started using ‘Boom brow’ from Fuschia. It’s fantastic. All applied with my trusty Nima Brushes of course!! I love dressing up my lips so a good liner and a good long lasting lippy is essential. I go for NYX lippies or the matte range from Mac in deep berries, warm pinks or pinky reds. You’ll never catch me wearing a nude lip. Boring! The Oils of Life body cream from the body Shop is a recent obsession. I cannot get enough of those body creams. They’re absolutely lush.
Your ‘me’ time
A good film or TV series with my other half, Brian. Fluffy pyjamas and a cuddly duvet. A night with friends around the kitchen table laughing til it hurts. Lunch with my mum on a random Tuesday afternoon. Walks in the park with my buddies and their offspring! Getting my hair done! Seeing my family and my beautiful twin Nephews, Jacob & Charlie. They live in London with my brother and future sister in law so time spent with them all is precious.
I love walking. I usually meet with a different friend 3-4 times a week for a good catch up and some exercise. At the moment I’m really into painting and upcycling old furniture. I could sit at the table painting items for hours. We recently had a party for NIMA’s 3rd birthday and I spent about two months in the run up spray painting items in gold and covering in glitter, making paper Pom poms, decorating wooden letters etc. I loved it. Apart from the glitter getting everywhere!
Your favourite restaurant
Myself and Brian’s favourite restaurant would probably be ‘Neon’ on Camden street. Its a noodle bar with a fantastic menu, reasonable prices and at the end you get a free ice cream cone. Which you get to pull yourself!!! It’s so simple, but it works. The food is consistently good so we go back time and time again. Would highly recommend it.
Your favourite holiday destination
I love the States. During my twenties myself and my father went to the states every year around October. It was the absolute highlight of my year every year. We visited New York, Boston, Las Vegas, LA, San Francisco, Chicago to name a few. We always had such a ball. Such amazing people, such incredible cities. Next on my list is New Orleans. Maybe next year…if I can find a babysitter!!!!
Your stress busting tip
Turn your phone off!!!! I swear they are the connection to everything and we’d be absolutely lost without them but with so many messages & notifications constantly coming through on one device via email, text message, whats app, Facebook messenger, snapchat etc it’s very easy to get completely overwhelmed at times. Just turn your phone off for a couple of hours. Or leave it in your bedroom when your home in the evening. Have a conversation with some one that’s physically standing in front of you! When you need to switch your off mind, start by switching the phone off.
Anyone that knows my brush range will see where the colour inspiration comes from once they enter my home! I find the shade of duck egg very tranquil and relaxing so that’s where the Artistic collection started from. I like clean, bright tones, whites (The Elite Collection), warm mocha tones, soft Browns. Candles everywhere, heart shaped table mats, cushions, picture frames everywhere! Warm, ,cosy, welcoming and very girly!
Your favourite piece
I’d have to bring this back to the painting we mentioned earlier. My ‘Nina Devito, Red Rose Stiletto’ painting won in 2008 for wearing best shoes at an xpose party! It’ll still be on my bedroom wall in twenty years time and it’ll still be as fabulous as it is today.