The male beautician with a magical touch
Posted Sunday, October 27 2013 at 00:00
He has all it takes to knead your skin for stress relief. Talk of women’s make-up for which he is a consultant.
I find the 33-year-old professional beautician and masseur, who is tall, and wearing dreadlocks, engaged with a client. His operation area is a rather spacious room, separated by glass partitioning. Steven Mukisa runs Steve’s Beauty Clinic and Medspa on Kampala Road.
His great entrepreneurship skills are quite visible, as there are feminine items like bags and shoes on sale, on shelves in the waiting area.
A few minutes later, he re-emerges and sits on one of the woven chairs.
He is a professional masseur, dermatologist and beautician; dispelling the belief that professional only refers to white collar jobs. Professionally, he is referred to as a dermocosmetologist.
He has been in the field for at least a decade. During the interview, he points out that contrary to what many think, this kind of work also requires one to be educated, and knowledgeable.
“You are dealing with muscles, and the neural system, and so you have to be very conversant with these areas,” he says. Over the years, he has attended a number of beauty schools, to widen his knowledge.
He says though that finding himself in this field was somewhat a coincidence, and not something he had initially planned to do.
“During my Senior Six vacation, in 1999, I was handpicked along with a few other guys as the pioneer students of a beauty school that had just been opened.
“We were what you would call ‘trials’, to see if the idea of a beauty school was a good one,” he explains.
A few months later, the trial was a success, and the school, which later on came to be known as the Pearl Institute of Cosmetology, opened, located on Makerere Hill Road. Mukisa then became more passionate about cosmetology, and thereafter decided to take it on as a career.
However, this did not go well with his parents who had wanted their first-born son to enroll for a law degree course.
“I'm the first born of four, so my parents thought my career choice didn’t reflect any responsibility, that I was not being a good example to my siblings,” he says.
This caused quite a rift between Mukisa and his family, and he says it took more than five years for his parents to come to terms with his career choice. “When I began appearing on TV and in newspapers, it dawned on them that my field of specialisation was not a bad one, and they liked it,” he emphasises.
Daring it in a woman’s world
There is belief people hold in regard to this profession. In Uganda and the outside world, men that engage in careers that are female -dominated are usually considered to be gay. In this regard, Mukisa disagrees explaining that being gay, is something that is common in very many other fields, not just the beauty and fashion world.
“The thing is that men tend to know what women want, majorly because they relate to those aspects that they look out for in a woman. That is why the best designers in the world are men, and also male hairdressers and stylists do a very exceptional job,” he says.