Julien Henry, 29, used to be a jockey but is now a makeup artist from France who decided to move to Bali to escape from the stress in Paris. He’s planning to launch a new makeup line in Indonesia. Henry shared his day with Carla Albertí de la Rosa.

The first thing I think of when I wake up at 7:30 in the morning is what I have to do for the day. I have a coffee with milk and one teaspoon of sugar and I have a cigarette. I can’t eat anything in the morning; my stomach is closed. I’m quite drowsy for about an hour after I get out of bed so I sit and have my coffee for a while.

I ride my bike to the gym at 8:30; it’s a small gym in Kerobokan and it takes me about 10 minutes to get there. I stay for over two hours. I exercise on all the machines but I hate cardio so I don’t do it often. I’m almost 30 now and I can see my body is changing so I want to be healthy.
I then go to eat at a local warung. Since I don’t have anything for breakfast I have an early lunch. I need rice every day; if I don’t eat rice something is missing. My grandmother was Vietnamese and I’ve been eating rice every day since I’m a child. I have lots of vegetables and I normally have chicken. In Bali they cook chicken in many different ways and I never get bored of it.

I go back home and take a shower. I like to do different things every day and I try to discover Bali. It’s not a big island but there are so many things to see. I’ve been a makeup artist for 10 years and I now travel back and forth to Paris to work with my clients.

While in Bali, I like to see the different styles of makeup of the Balinese dancers. It’s very different from Europe. They have many beautiful colours in their dresses and I think they wear too many colours on their face. They would look better with simple makeup as they have many ornaments on their head and their clothes are already very bright. But it’s very interesting to compare the way people use makeup in different countries. I like to learn with famous Indonesian makeup artist Yeanne Intansari about different techniques that in the end take you to the same result. I watch her work for a couple of hours.

I go back to France depending on the promotion of the artists I work with. I’ve been working with artists like Victoria Abril for seven years; she’s a very famous actress in France, although she’s originally Spanish. So I go back to Paris or Spain every time she has a promotion and I stay for a few months. When I first meet a new client we need some time to get used to each other and to find the right tones for them.

I want to start up a makeup collection in Indonesia and right now I’m finding out about what people like and I’m studying the market. Many people over here buy very cheap makeup and it’s not good for the skin as it has a lot of chemicals and can cause allergies. But expensive ones like Make Up For Ever are too expensive for the locals.

I want to use natural pigments but create a brand that is affordable. In the afternoon, around 4, I love horse riding on the beach. I used to be a jockey, when I was 13 until I turned 19, and riding is still an amazing feeling. There’s a stable with 15 horses at the end of Dyana Pura. I ride the same horse; it’s a grey one and has a very strong temper. I’ve ridden everywhere in the world and in many places the horses are skinny but these are beautiful and well looked after. There’s nothing better than riding a galloping horse on the beach while you see the amazing Balinese sunset.

I like to use my professional makeup on my friends, so around 7pm they come home and I prepare them for the night. Doing night makeup is the best as I can be more creative. I also like to transform men into women and I work with drag queens. I’ve been fascinated with transformation since I was young. It takes me about an hour and a half to prepare their face. I need to put on more makeup to cover the masculine features and the rough areas. I cover their eyebrows with makeup and then I paint them on top. I brush their wig and they are a different person.

Life here is more relaxed and the weather allows you to do more things outdoors. Around 9pm I go out for dinner at a local warung and then for a few drinks with friends. Vodka is my favourite but I’m trying to be healthy so I take it easy. I normally go back home around midnight. I collapse on my bed and recover my energy to give it my all at the gym the next morning.

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