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Erwin Totanes Oning, a name to watch in the fashion industry when it comes to make-up and hairstyling. Erwin or “Kleng” as he is fondly called by his family and friends was born and raised in Labo, Camarines Norte. Growing up, he always has this dream to succeed and become one of the prominent make-up artists in the country.

Equipped with ambition, talent, compassion and faith, he left the country and worked in United Arab Emirates as a Human Resource Manager. After 5 years he became a Sales Manager of a British Company. Working in the corporate world didn’t stop him to use his innate skills in make-up application when he had free time. His hair and make-up creations were soon noticed by professional artist abroad enabling his make-up works to be featured in Abu Dhabi’s Tempo Magazine.

When he went back to the Philippines, he utilized his valuable experience as well as his passion for beauty enhancement, and got the chance to collaborate with country’s brilliant people behind successful fashion shows and beauty pageants.

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For Kleng, the satisfaction that comes from using makeup to help people look their best or become characters far different from their usual selves is priceless and very self-fulfilling.

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To be a successful makeup artist, you should be creative and artistic, enjoy experimenting with ideas and materials, and have a good eye for color, he added.

Being a makeup artist requires long hours, mostly on his feet, requiring both stamina and fitness plus patience, and is quite challenging. The job can be stressful at times, too, with early morning travels for photo shoots and late evening shows. But Kleng firmly believes that…

if it is your passion that you follow and you love what you do, you will never work a single day in your life.

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His number of clientele began to increase, undoubtedly because of his world-class hair works and make-up style. He got the chance to groom several well-known personalities in the international fashion as well as the most influential people in the business industry.

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Fashion Designer JEANNIE GOULBURN phil am life awards Host and Columnist Johnny Litton

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As he continues to create his own name in the industry and receives various recognition he never let success go into his head, he believes in the importance of finding creative ways to share the credit and pull other people up the ladder of success along with him. Treat everyone with dignity and respect. You may be successful, but that doesn’t make you better than anyone else. For him, life is a continuous learning process and mistakes are the irate clients that is why he work extra hard to learn new techniques and characterization appropriate for the make-up world to ensure quality service to his patrons. With all these blessings, he can only say…

Thank you God for everything!

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Erwin “Kleng” Oning — a Laboeño…. A true pride of Camarines Norte!


Dian April Poblete
Camarines Norte News

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