Spotlight – Jack Oliver



Gurl: Though we’re sure everyone will know you already, could you give us a quick little introduction? 

Jack: Hey, I’m Jack Oliver I am currently a care working for Dementia and Alzheimer’s. I am now 27 years old and living back in my home town of Cambridgeshire during the Pandemic, I have been doing makeup for over 10 years now and am now striving to get back into what I know. 

Gurl: What would you say birthed your passion for make-up?

Jack: From a very young age I really found myself struggling with my gender and appearance so I think that alongside a few close friends and my general taste in fashion, music definitely swayed me to want to play with makeup. Once I found it, it was definitely hard to ignore as I absolutely loved the idea of change and being able to decorate the face with colour and shapes. It then really lifted from there on in and I would try and incorporate makeup into my art subjects at school using powder paints and skin, playing with textured and tones.

Gurl: It’s great that you took such a relatable struggle and combined it with a love for artistry to create not only an outlet, but something that shows of your talents and allows others to get to know you through your creations.

Gurl: Who do you consider your biggest inspirations when it comes to the style of work your create?

Jack: A lot of my inspiration comes from emotion, how I feel, what’s happening in my life at that moment in time. It’s a way to put it out and release. Some of my work in the past has been dark and heavy but I try and express all emotion into my work. Alongside that I have always loved fashion, runways such as Gareth Pugh, Vivianne Westwood. So fashion is a big part of inspiration for me too. 

Gurl: That sounds like a great combination of inspirations, freedom of expression is always key for artists and throwing in an element of fashion……well who doesn’t love that?

Gurl: When you got the call for Glow Up, how did you react?

Jack: Shocked.. in all honesty I know what my talents are but I really didn’t expect to get casted for the show. It really was an application on a whim of 5 minute break at work and feeling down. So why not just apply! 

BWD: That break was blessed and now so is the world, we get to see your talents on TV as well as social media. To any MUA’s reading, never hesitate to pop in the application.

Gurl: Prior to your appearance on the show, which of your stunning creations are you most proud of?

Jack: I have a few images I really resonate with regarding time and emotion!

Gurl: We love a trans pride moment up in this house and quite frankly that green looks mighty good on you!

Jack: Some that just really push my technical side too.

Gurl: Naturally, gotta show off those skills! These are both gorgeous but wow do we adore the monochrome look, it feels so elegant and a just a hunt of old Hollywood glam.

Gurl: You knew it was coming – what is your top make-up tip?

Jack: Right now I couldn’t stress enough about hygiene for yourself and your makeup/makeup kits. Butttt in a technical side of speaking I’d say if you are out and working as a makeup artist, really look at skin and how to work with it, always carry a colour wheel even if you don’t think you need one, they can be handy when looking for tones and colour. Honestly my no.1 tip is just go with the flow, enjoy the makeup and don’t let it stress you. A good deep breath (always remember to breath). 

Gurl: That definitely seems like a handful of tips but they’re all very useful and taking a breath is honestly a great suggestion for everything in life.

Gurl: If you’re in a rush, what are the key 3 products you’d grab before you’re out the door? 

Jack: Creme colour palette, translucent powder and a good brush. That way I can do absolutely anything. 

Gurl: Simple and effective, we like it!

Gurl: What was life like for you growing up as a wonderful queer person? 

Jack: I definitely had my times of why me.. it was a struggle in moments due to the location I was living and being the most weirdest looking one around, but I also had some amazing friends around me and grandparents who supported me so much that it really balanced out the emotions. I am so grateful for those I had around me and still support me to this day. I’m glad I found who I am and what makes me.. me! 

Gurl: Life is definitely a journey of discovery but there’s a lot of extra bridges to cross when you’re queer – many of which simply based on appearance, which is ridiculous really. We’re glad you had the support to get through it and blossom into your amazing true self.

Gurl: How did you feel seeing your pronouns proudly displayed on TV?  

Jack: Honestly… I had a tear in my eye, to have pronouns under our names in the show really proved to myself and so many others that our world is moving forward and the more of this that’s around, the more that our would will accept each and everyone. I’m proud to be part of the first group of people to be able to talk about pronouns on tv. 

Gurl: There was such a warming feeling seeing the pronouns being listed for all to see, we can only imagine how precious a moment it was when that first episode aired. The conversation has begun and it’s going to take us in the right direction.

Gurl: Do you have any advice you could offer to the young LGBTQI+ community? 

Jack: To always have fun, enjoy yourselves, your bodies and the youth you have, be creative and snap photos when you can to enjoy those happy memory’s. If you feel a struggle or low, reach out to a loved one and use you’re voice. You are loved. 

Gurl: We couldn’t have put that any better ourselves to be honest. Spread the love, stand together and have a great time being you.

Gurl: Just for fun, do you have a party trick? 

Jack: Ohhh my. So this one is silly but I’m double jointed in one single finger, my index finger, so I can bend the very end all the way! It’s kinda weird as when I show people not many people can do it. 

Gurl: Okay we definitely need to see that when we go for cocktails together……also to anyone reading, this is one of those “don’t try at home” moments – that’s not the kind of fingers snapping we encourage

Gurl: Outside of the gorgeous Glow Up family, could you recommend us 3 MUAs that everyone should follow?

Jack: Ok ok ok.. top 3 favourite Instagram MUA.. Rei Lilith, Celine Bernaerts and I can’t pick so imma say two more as I love them dearly as friends of mine; Anastasija Potjomkina and Luke Harris

Gurl: We’re not even gonna pretend to be mad that you included an extra, the more talent the better right?

Jack: Thank you so much for chatting to me today and I’m super excited for you to all watch GLOW UP S3! <3

Gurl: It’s been such a pleasure, you’re an absolute angel and we can’t wait to see you soar! xo

BBC Three’s Glow Up is streaming now on BBC iPlayer with new episodes at 7pm every Tuesday!

You can keep up with all things Jack by following them on Instagram, so go show the love <3

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is IG_button_icon.png