Featured Beauty Influencer: Catherine Martinez

Next Class Starts: Dec 30th
Next Class Starts: Dec 30th

These days it’s not easy to stand out in the vast crowd of beauty influencers. Aspiring influencers really need to bring something unique to the table in order to be noticed. This level of uniqueness is what brings us to our next featured beauty influencer in this series. Catherine (Cat) Martinez saw a need for more inclusive content and sought to fill that need using American Sign Language.

This Month’s Featured Influencer: Catherine (Cat) Martinez

A post shared by Cat (@catthe1st) on

Where Cat’s At

Cat is currently living in New York. She recently graduated from NYU with her degree in communicative sciences and disorders. Her reach goes far beyond the East Coast, though. She has been featured in articles by People®, Life & Style©, Today©, Elle©, Bustle® and PopSugar©, just to name a few.

What Cat Does

Cat is unique because she creates makeup tutorials using American Sign Language. She has over 38,000 followers on her Instagram account, @catthe1st. She also posts her ASL tutorial videos to her YouTube channel. Cat’s following is less than 100,000 which qualifies her as a micro-influencer. What sets micro-influencers apart is their high rates of engagement. Engagement is the interaction between followers and influencers measured by likes, comments and shares. Many micro-influencers have impressive engagement rates compared to influencers with huge follower counts. Barron’s® reports that micro-influencers account for about 79% of the beauty influencer mix.

Cat is considered a micro-influencer based on her follower count, but the impact she has on her followers is huge. This is reflected in her high engagement rates, and growing audience. She gets an average of 1,500 likes and 50 comments per post! Engagement is often overlooked by brands looking to collaborate with influencers. Many times overall follower count is considered most important when brands consider partnerships with influencers. It is becoming more apparent now that engagement is actually very important to consider as well.

According to Forbes®, “engagement is the key factor in an influencer’s ultimate success when it comes to commercial viability.” This is largely due to the fact that engagement is often interpreted as high trust with an influencer. An audience that trusts an influencer is thought to be more likely to purchase products that influencer is supporting. Some major beauty brands have taken notice of Cat and have sent her products to review including MAC Cosmetics™, Urban Decay™, and Anastasia Beverly Hills®. Cat also teamed up with Wet N Wild™ for their Breaking Beauty Campaign late last year.

An Interview With Cat

Cat began learning ASL while she was studying communicative sciences and disorders at NYU. It was during this time that she noticed a lack of makeup tutorial videos tailored to the hearing impaired. She saw the need and started fixing the problem. She has received awesome feedback from her followers, especially those that are part of the deaf and hearing impaired communities.

In an interview with PizzaBottle© Cat explained what drew her to ASL and incorporating it into her videos.

“Sign language, which happens to be in the [Communicative Sciences and Disorders] program, is something that I fell in love with and was eager to learn. Many of my peers whom were either deaf or hard of hearing always complimented my makeup and were interested in the beauty industry. However, they did not feel like they fit in since there isn’t much deaf culture beauty resources or involvement.
… It just struck me one day when a few peers in my class asked me to translate what a blogger they were watching was saying, since the tutorial was auditory and had no other mode of communication. I recently started my channel to change that.”

Education Sets You Apart From the Rest

The beauty industry is becoming more competitive every day. Cat’s education is what inspired her to begin her ASL makeup tutorials. If you’re interested in beauty and even the possibility of becoming an influencer, consider getting a beauty education at Bellus Academy! Our cosmetology and makeup artistry programs could get you on the right track to your future in the beauty industry! Contact us today.

banner that reads other featured influencers

Featured Beauty Influencer Series

Leave a Reply

Notify of

Why Choose Bellus?

Travel the World

We offer International Certification (ITEC) which allows our graduates to work in 38 countries around the world.

See all Top 12 Reasons to Choose Bellus »

Top Job Placement

Our career services team and student mobile app make finding your dream career so much easier.

See all Top 12 Reasons to Choose Bellus »

Business & Marketing Training

Classes that prepare you to own a business and market yourself.

See all Top 12 Reasons to Choose Bellus »

Our Reputation

Bellus is the most awarded beauty and wellness institution in the country and Intercoiffure recently ranked us the #1 beauty school in North America!

See all Top 12 Reasons to Choose Bellus »

Compete in Competitions

Our students have a history of succeeding at national student competitions including TrendVision and America’s Beauty Show.

See all Top 12 Reasons to Choose Bellus »

We're Tech Savvy

Our app gives 24/7 access to academics, attendance and job postings. Select programs offer social learning on iPads, which are included in the student kit.

See all Top 12 Reasons to Choose Bellus »

Exam Prep

All of our programs include a mock state board test to prepare you for the state license exam and our kits include the state board kit and licensing fees.

See all Top 12 Reasons to Choose Bellus »

Top Educators

We invest in our educators to ensure that they are trained in the latest industry techniques and trends.

See all Top 12 Reasons to Choose Bellus »


Our relationships with high-end salons in Southern California allow students to network with top stylists and owners. (CA campuses only)

See all Top 12 Reasons to Choose Bellus »

We Give Back

We have an undeniable passion for humanity. Our schools are honored to give back and participate in community events while utilizing our technical skills.

See all Top 12 Reasons to Choose Bellus »

Multiple License Programs

Bellus is proud to offer combined courses that allow you to enroll in one program and graduate with multiple credentials.

See all Top 12 Reasons to Choose Bellus »

Alumni Benefits

We give our graduates access to job postings, the opportunity to attend campus events and alumni scholarships for advanced education.

See all Top 12 Reasons to Choose Bellus »


“The teachers were amazing! Without Bellus, I wouldn’t have the rewarding life I have today. School was something I looked forward to every single day. I can’t believe I have a job that I love going to every day.”

- Adrianna
Read more success stories »


“My life has changed so much. Within eight months of graduating, I now own a successful wax bar. I am forever grateful for the great education I received at Bellus Academy.”

- Jonyse
Read more success stories »


“For the past year I have been working on super-yachts in Spain as a massage therapist for billionaires and have loved every second of it! I don’t know what I would’ve done without Bellus’ training and expertise.”

- Clare
Read more success stories »


“I love how hands-on the nail program is at Bellus. I am a visual and hands-on learner and I appreciated the time and focus on my advancement throughout the program. I would definitely recommend Bellus Academy to anyone interested in beauty and wellness education, especially the nail program!”

- Kelsey
Read more success stories »


“The program and educators in Make-up Artistry are exceptional. The curriculum was so well designed that each day I couldn’t wait to get to school and begin the next step in learning high-end makeup. I feel very comfortable after taking this class to apply for a job anywhere in makeup, including a Hollywood studio, theater, photography or in a high-end salon and spa.”

- Jessica
Read more success stories »
man shave


“As a cosmo crossover, the Barbering Program was not only an excellent way to brush up on the basics, but also the best way to take my career to the next level. The staff was so helpful in every aspect and I highly recommend the program.”

- Johnny
Read more success stories »


View our Disclosures & Consumer Info along with the Net Price Calculator
Click here

Financial Aid

Yes! Financial Aid is available to those who qualify.
See financial aid options

Flexible Schedule

We offer day & night classes. We also have new classes starting every month.
See upcoming class starts