Murvihill faces the world in full color


A finished watercolor and teardrops inspired eye shadow look. Photo courtesy of Helen Murvihill (@ruethedayy)

“It was the Christmas of 2017, and my sister decided to get me makeup,” Helen Murvihill (11) said. “It was just a couple things from the drugstore, but she taught me to do makeup that night, and really encouraged me to have fun and explore. I’ve loved it ever since.”

Through her first interaction with makeup, Murvihill developed a passion for all things cosmetic.

“I’ve always been really interested in changing my appearance and seeing what I can do,” Murvihill said. “I started with just some basic makeup, a swipe of blush or maybe some lipstick, but now some looks take several hours. I also run my own makeup Instagram @ruethedayy. Really you should just have fun with how you look and how you want to present yourself.”

Murvihill showcases a completed rainbow butterfly makeup look for her Instagram. Photo courtesy of Helen Murvihill (@ruethedayy)

Through using cosmetics, Murvihill has not only been able to transform her appearance, but her opinion of herself as well. 

“In my school, I was kind of an outcast for most of elementary school,” Murvihill said, “but makeup really helped me. It’s a different way of expression that isn’t just clothing. Wearing what I want to wear is like, ‘I’m here right now,’ and it helped me build so much confidence. When I come to school wearing cool clothes with my makeup done, it’s like you’re going to see me and you’re going to know I’m having a fun time. It’s helped me expand my confidence.”

Not only has makeup boosted her confidence, but it has also helped her to connect with her LGBTQ+ identity. 

“As I’ve gotten older, being queer has had an important impact on my makeup,” Murvihill said. “I’ve seen artists like Lady Gaga, as well as LGBTQ+ makeup artists who really do amazing work. No one can do it like them, and their work really spoke to me. I wanted to be like them: openly expressing who they are and being themselves. I mean, people look at me and know I’m queer, and I welcome that—it’s true, I am.”  

From using makeup to connect with herself and identity, to practicing on family and friends, Murvihill has big plans for her future in cosmetology, but she wasn’t always so sure.

Student Matt Sippel (11) showcasing his “reverse Billie Eilish” hair color done by Murvihill. Photo by Nataleigh Scheller-Houska


“It was really hard to come to terms with the fact that I wanted to be a cosmetologist,” Murvihill said. “A lot of the push from my family and society is to do something academic, but it’s not going to make me happy. So now, I’m planning to do two years at community college to get my associates degree in business, and then I’m going to do two or three years of cosmetology school to get all of my certifications and training. I plan on running a formal event business. I want to do a little of everything: hair, nails, makeup. I want to create a one-stop shop.” 

Murvihill focuses on happiness and encourages others to find happiness through their own expression. 

“To some, hair and makeup may seem frivolous, but it makes me happy,” Murvihill said. “It makes me really, really happy. I couldn’t imagine my life any other way.”