Ojas Rajani Interview: Exclusive Chat with The Celebrity Make-Up Artist

We invited Ojas Rajani, Celebrity Make-Up Artist, for an interview with The Wedding Journals to know more about her journey.

Ojas Rajani is Popularly known as Aishwarya Rai’s Makeup Artist, has been a part of the industry for over 26 years. She is loved for her glamorous, wavy hairdos and her trademark eyes. She has also provided her services to a number of Bollywood celebrities in the past.

So let’s take a look at Ojas Rajani Interview,

1. Tell us something about yourself and your company.

I’m a chartered accountant turned celebrity makeup artist and a hairstylist. It is because of following my passion and dream. I have been doing hair and makeup from the past 26 years, almost done three generations of actresses from Jaya Bachan to Shweta Bachan to her daughter Navya Nanda,& Amrita Singh to her daughter Sara Ali Khan. Urmila Matondkar to Aishwarya Bachan, Dimple Kapadia, and her daughter Twinkle Khanna. I also did hair and makeup for Deepika Padukone, Sonam Kapoor, Anushka Sharma, Jacqueline Fernandez, etc.

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I also run my Hair and Makeup Academy in Bandra West for about five years, taking training to another level.

2. What’s your competitive advantage and why can’t it be copied?

My Unique Selling Proposition is that I do hair and makeup and costume styling, so I see the overall look from head to toe. Having trained from the Miami School of Hair and Makeup Florida USA, I chose to bring in the dewy skin, no-makeup look in trend. 18 years back when I did films with Urmila Matondkar and Aishwarya Rai in Jodha Akbar and the time for her Loreal endorsements and Cannes appearance.

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I brought in the style of creamy dewy skin texture, with a very subtle foundation look and soft glamorous eyes with soft lip colors. I guess the way I do hair in my signature style sets me top-notch in the market and yes, my signature look is hard to replicate as my finesse of work and artistic vision sets me apart to the likes of my clientele, and sheer passion, determination, focus and a creative vision of the overall look wins me over others.

After all, an original will always radiate better than a copy. And yes my accomodating easy-going nature to understand a client’s requirement and to reciprocate their vision to reality is a winner all the way.

3. What challenges/obstacles did you face in your journey so far?

Life is a challenge, accept it! Basically, when I started 26 years back, Hair and makeup weren’t a very respectable profession, so one had to always prove their worth. For me, being a perfectionist and a workaholic helped me prove my worth. In the industry 18 years back, the style of makeup was different, From what I had learned in the US. But I think my ability to convince the Bollywood actresses to try my style of soft dewy makeup became a raging trend.

As you see in the past only Aishwarya Rai and Urmila Matondkar got their look right whereas other actresses like Rani Mukherjee, Shilpa Shetty were criticized for their overdose of makeup looks, So I guess they all reinvented themselves after seeing Aishwarya Rai with just soft foundation which gave a natural and radiant look and with the rosy nude lip colors to soft eyes with soft eyelashes. It became the range and every actress from that era tried copying the look coloring their hair in soft brown tones to wearing colored contact lenses to making their makeup looking peaches and cream like, all lux soap commercials, and today it’s THE LOOK.

In Bollywood, all sport the no-makeup look. Even brides have appreciated the soft no-makeup look. Earlier we saw brides with a lot of makeup, come out of a mythology movie. I think after Jodha Akbar people got the courage to change their style of makeup.

4. What are your expansion plans?

In terms of expansion, I have a dream of opening my academy and studio in all of the cities in India. I already have my academy in Malaysia and Singapore, but I would love all the cities of India to benefit from my academy. As I feel, The more you share your knowledge, The more creative you can get.

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I’m sure I set an example for others. The sky is the limit. I wanna open a college for Hair, makeup and styling, so they people can get real hands-down training from a Bollywood diva like me.

5. Tell our audience more about your failures? How should one bounce back?

Luckily I have been a destiny’s child and I haven’t let myself fail. But yes, focus on reinventing yourself and your skills all the time. Or u will get stagnant, as the competition, today is very fierce, nowadays social media has made it tougher to up your game. So, yes, please be alert and willing to do better and learn from everyone, as all have their own individual styles. But please do not give up. You have to be a go-getter.

6. How do you define success?

Name, fame, wealth are just one of the pillars of success. But being humble is when you earn respect & your client’s trust and admiration with your parent’s blessing. Then you know you have arrived at success.

7. Please share with us some of the challenges you faced in your journey.

Like I said I had my training in the US, my style was a little different from the trend in Bollywood makeup. But I guess my convincing power with sheer love and encouragement won everyone over, So I guess you have to gauge and understand the market trends and adapt to it with a pinch of your personal style.

And always remember what you can do only you can do. Never be insecure or scared of competition. As it only pushes you to do better and the best. Do not lose focus with other’s negative comments as there’s a saying “Criticize me when you are at my level. Till then you can just admire.”

8. What would you advise someone starting up and particularly to women entrepreneurs?

To all the women entrepreneurs out there, have patience and the willingness to learn. Do better. With focus and sheer dedication, will make you reach the top, Sky is the limit.

They laughed at me because I am different, I laugh at them because they are all the same. 

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Ojas Rajani Interview with The Wedding Journals

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Aastha Jha
Founder and CEO at The Wedding Journal


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