From dealing cards to enhancing brows, Rachel proves there is beauty in transitions and transformations.
Life, at times, is like a high-stakes game where you must be willing to take risks to find what makes your heart happy. Such is true for Rachel Dy, a casino dealer turned master artist at Miss Derm, who took a daring gamble and pursued a career in a new industry.
Discovering a new passion
Before she became a part of the beauty industry, Rachel dealt casino cards for almost six years. It was in 2020, during the height of the pandemic, when she decided to explore an entirely new path and sign up for training and certifications on semi-permanent make-up (SPMU) and aesthetics.
“I got inspired kasi parang ang sarap magkilay. Kasi ‘pag sa brows natin, we really love it, ‘di ba?” Rachel shares, saying that even though she initially wanted to master semi-permanent eyeliner make-up, she eventually fell in love with brow enhancement more. She found the entire experience fascinating. The different brow shapes, the skilful brow techniques, the artist’s view during procedures—all these things were new to her.
When she was just starting, she immediately realized that enhancing brows wasn’t as easy as she thought it would be. “Mahirap [pala] sa mga masters na gumawa ng kilay patalikod, lalo na pagdating sa strokes. Kasi may tamang strokes para sa [iba’t ibang kilay]. Kailangan talaga balanced ‘yung kamay mo.”
In spite of the challenges of being a newbie then, nothing stopped her from enhancing her skill.
“I practised and practised ‘yung flow ng blading ko,” she shares, saying that in her first job as a microblader, she had to handle 14 to 16 clients a day. This made her improve on her speed and mastery of the craft.
Here’s one particular session she couldn’t forget: “At my first job I've learned how to map properly, na dapat their eyes are open, sometimes we overlook this” she recalls. Such a scenario encouraged her to study different brow shapes and client needs. “I trained different scenarios hanggang makuha ko na ‘yung pinakapantay na sukat, especially sa seniors na may mga old tattoos.”
Then, it was in her second post that she truly enhanced her technique. “Kailangan pala ng you have a lot of experience. Marami kang kailangang mahawakang client, maka-encounter ng iba’t ibang kilay, bago mo magawa kung ano talaga ‘yung dapat sa kanila,” she says.
Rachel then discovered a newfound passion. Her jump from one industry to another allowed her to cultivate her innate artistic skills and heart for helping people look and feel their best. “I didn't expect na mapupunta ako sa industry na ‘to,” she says. “Casino dealer before—handling cards. Tapos ngayon kilay na ‘di ba?”
All her experience collectively contributed to where she is today: a highly-requested master artist at Miss Derm Quezon City, known for her expertise in brow enhancement procedures such as microshading, microblading, and especially reconstruction.
A master of the brow
When Rachel joined Miss Derm, she bloomed into a brow expert with exceptional skill and attention to detail, allowing clients to leave with brows that look perfected and personalised.
And how does she do it? By starting each session with a thorough assessment.
“In-a-assess ko [‘yung clients] based sa kilay nila, sa skin type nila, kung acidic ba sila—du’n ako nags-start,” she says. For Rachel, it’s essential to connect with her clients and find out their concerns first so that she can recommend services that fit them best.
“Minsan may client tayong gusto ng nanoblading, pero hindi naman nya need ng nano. Ipapakita ko sa kanila kung ano ‘yung procedure na dapat sa kanila. At sinasabi ko rin ‘yung magiging possible result per procedure at tinatanong kung okay lang ba ‘yun sa kanila.” Having these conversations at the onset of every session allows Rachel to set and meet client expectations.
Reconstructing unhappy brows
One of the things Rachel considers her major success in Miss Derm is her brow reconstruction work. “May mga umiiyak sa’kin na clients na nagawan sila before sa ibang clinic. Kapag hindi satisfied ‘yung client, pupunta sa’min. [Itatanong] kung pwedeng gawin. Kung pwedeng i-reconstruct,” she shares. “Minsan naman mali rin ‘yung aftercare nila. They used toner right away, or sa or sunlight ans sweat, kaya kumakapal ‘yung retention ng kilay.” According to Rachel, brow reconstruction requires another level of skill since you’ll be transforming brows that have an existing tattoo. Some artists and clinics don’t accept reconstruction work anymore because it’s more complicated than the usual microshading or microblading work. “Iba iba ‘yung technique sa iba’t ibang klase kilay. At iba pa lalo kung reconstruction.”
Thankfully, this is something Rachel knows how to handle. “Case-to-case basis,” she says. “Hindi lahat pwedeng i-reconstruct [agad] or i-cover up. Some will need removals like laser or saline.” In times like this, Rachel is straightforward about what the client needs. “Ayaw kong masayang ‘yung pera ng client. Talagang honest ako kung ano ‘yung treatment na kailangan nila.”
“Until I see tham happy kasi naayos na ‘yung kilay nila,” she says. “Kapag masaya ‘yung client, dun [ko] talaga [nararamdaman] ‘yung satisfaction na sinasabi.”
Aside from brow reconstruction, clients also love Rachel’s microshading technique. “Hindi ako full shading, soft shading ako. 70% sa baba, 30% sa taas. So when you see them, parang natural.” This is the formula that Rachel follows, but she still makes sure to personalise each stroke. Whether it's microshading to achieve a soft, powder-like finish or microblading for the striking hair-stroke effect, Rachel's technique results in brows that look impeccable and maintain their natural appearance.
Building her legacy as a Miss Derm artist
As beauty trends come and go like shifting seasons, Rachel knows that growth happens daily.
“Nag-g-grow kami [every day]. But we should continue to learn and know the new techniques,” she says. She invests her time in mastering new tools, collaborating with other Miss Derm artists, and sharing what she knows with the team.
To Rachel, the most rewarding thing about her job at Miss Derm is seeing their boss and their clients happy with her work. In her three years in the industry, her journey sure doesn’t stop at mastering her craft. She continues to be an avid learner and a vigilant observer of the ever-evolving beauty landscape.
“Gusto kong magtrain for other techniques pa. Gusto ko pang mag-grow talaga at makilala pa nang sobra si Miss Derm,” she says.
Rachel’s transformation to becoming a brow artist is a transformation that led to more transformations in each of her client’s lives. And with her at Miss Derm, there’s no doubt she can achieve greater things and establish her own legacy in the industry.