MAF started life as simply a messageboard for women to use as a place to ask makeup questions. Back in 2005, when it all started, it was mostly about bridal makeup, that being the discipline that Sam and many of the MAF artists worked in.
These days though, the forum is a hive of activity with artists working in all disciplines from bridal to catwalk, photoshoots to editorial, but with the same eclectic mix of full time professionals, part time professionals, students, newly qualifieds, and regular consumers.
There are 2 private areas of the forum that aren’t visible to the general public. One for the pros who advertise on MAF, and one for students and newly qualified artists. Both are busy, and have proved useful for artists who want to have perhaps a shoulder to cry on, to voice concerns, ask opinions or simply just to say ‘hey, I had a bad day’.
However, the rest of the forum is open for all to see, to join in, to share, and to be a part of. With a dedicated section to makeup advice, and one for hair advice, it made sense to have boards for product testing and reviewing. Sometimes its nice to have a different opinion on a product, and to have ‘live’ conversations, and this is a great part. Plus who else is Sam going to ask to do product testing for her? MAF members of course!
And of course, no makeup forum would be complete without a Face of the Day section. Sometimes it’s our own faces, sometimes it’s photoshoots, but it doesn’t matter who’s face it is, there’s always someone who wants to have a look! If you look hard enough, there are some familiar faces tucked in there, and even some bare naked ones too!
But its not all about the makeup, we have ‘chill out’ areas too, The Lounge, where we talk off topic, the Powder Room, where sometimes its not about advice, but just about ‘wow, I love this new product’. And because of our roots, a Wedding section too. There is the obvious ‘Hello’ section, but its worth popping in there first to say ‘hi’, you’ll receive a very wram welcome from everyone.
Finally, we have the classified sections, with For Sale, Wanted and RAOK (Random Act of Kindness), where anything can be sold, from makeup to DVDs, books and shoes.
MAF is a well moderated site, however, it’s not one that needs a great deal of moderation, its rare that we get trolls, and everyone is very respectful of one another. Its just nice to have somewhere to go, hang out, natter to friends, and pop by whenever you feel like it. And no matter what kind of a day you’ve had, all the members of the forum will be supportive, whether its to give a virtual hug, an empathetic ear, or even a smack round the chops if the situation calls for it!
With members scattered all over the UK, we regularly meet up with each other in our various locales. 4 went out for dinner and cocktails in Manchester recently, a whole bundle got together at the IMATS in January, and Sam is hoping to meet up with some of the Southern crew in London next week! But we aren’t exclusively UK members, we have a growing collective in Australia, at least they can all chat to one another in the same timezone, and some more who are living and working throughout various parts of Europe.
Some days are busier than others, and some days are very quiet. There’s no hard and fast rules, though working weekends and holidays often mean a lack of artists hanging out there, but there’s usually someone bobbing by at some point in time, so never think you’re going to be all alone!
MAF isn’t just for makeup artists, it never was, and never will be. Its just a nice place to be if you have a ‘thing’ for makeup and want to chat to others, and you know what? Even if your thing for makeup isn’t that strong, you’re still more than welcome! Either click this link here, or look up to the top of the page, and you’ll see the button there to pop it open in a new window! Best of both worlds, read here and there at the same time!
Looking forward to seeing you there soon…