All redheads are real-life mermaids, but most are not actually mermaids with fins and seashell tops. That is until you meet Mermaid Avalon. She is a professional mermaid in California who travels to events, parties, festivals.. and more!
We spoke with her about how it is to actually be a mermaid day to day:
H2BAR: How did you become Mermaid Avalon?
MA: Growing up, the only redhead princess I had to look up to was Ariel, from The Little Mermaid. I had a swimming pool as a child and would practice swimming with my legs together like a dolphin or a mermaid. My dream job at the time was to be a dolphin trainer at Sea World, but I guess the tables turned on me and now I’m the one doing tricks! I discovered freediving as a teen and would routinely swim off of Laguna Beach with bi-fins. Eventually, I discovered companies online who had developed swimmable mermaid tails that use a built-in freediving monofin, and immediately committed to my first silicone mermaid tail! I have collected several tails and countless tops, crowns, and other accessories since then!
H2BAR: Tell us a bit about Orange County Mermaid?
MA: Orange County Mermaid is the name of my entertainment company. I travel all over Southern California (and sometimes even out of state) to perform at children’s parties, resorts, weddings, baby showers, charity events, corporate parties, music festivals, housewarmings….any event that people would want a “real life” mermaid to entertain at! Because I am so close to Los Angeles, I have had the chance to meet numerous celebrities and executives of major companies. I have been featured on the Emmy-award winning children’s show, Charlie, as well as in numerous photographic campaigns and editorials. It is truly my dream job, and I am so happy that we are expanding to hire more mermaids and “merhandler” assistants!
H2BAR: Did you always love mermaids as a kid?
MA: Of course! I have had a deep love of mermaids and the ocean since I can remember!
H2BAR: How does being a redhead help your role as Mermaid Avalon?
MA: I feel that redheads have a significant advantage when it comes to the mermaid entertainment industry. We have the pre-Raphaelite look that so many people associate with mermaids, nymphs, sirens, and the like. And of course, there’s Ariel too. It’s not always easy being a redhead mermaid though– I have to pack on a lot of reef-safe sunscreens because I am constantly out in the sun!
H2BAR: Why do you love your red hair?
MA: I feel like my hair is such a major part of who I am. It makes me stand out in a crowd and I feel like I have the feisty stereotypical redhead personality, too. I can’t imagine having any other hair color. I’m not sure that I would be into mermaiding if I wasn’t a redhead, either.
H2BAR: What’s one thing most people don’t know about being a mermaid?
MA: It’s hard work! I studied Communications and Business for my Bachelor’s degree, so, fortunately, I had enough of a marketing background going into this to know what to expect. Some people think that just because I look like Ariel that mermaid work just falls into my lap, and that simply isn’t the case. It is 100% self-promotion online and in person before you even start making money. It can be really stressful financially considering the initial commitment of a silicone tail alone can set you back anywhere from $900 to $4000.
Mermaiding can also be painful. Aside from the sunburns, muscle aches, and foot cramps, swimming with your eyes open in chlorine pools can easily irritate them, and you are more prone to skin irritations such as hot tub folliculitis and even ringworm from working with so many children. I have to take great care to cleanse and moisturize my skin and hair after all that swimming…I’m not trying to look washed up!
H2BAR: Where do you get your mermaid tails and outfits from? They are stunning!
MA: Right now I primarily use tails from Finfolk Productions (who I highly recommend), but I also own tails from The Mertailor and Fliptails! I have a fleet of spandex “beginner tails” in various sizes from The Mertailor and Fin Fun as well! Spandex tails are a lot lighter and easier to get on and off so they are great for children and adults who are new to mermaiding.
H2BAR: What’s your favorite makeup product(s) to rock your mermaid look?
MA: Urban Decay All-Nighter Setting Spray is my absolute must-have because I need to waterproof my makeup for mermaid work! Tarte recently released an absolutely fin-tastic mermaid makeup line as well. Make Up For Ever’s matte foundation and Make Up For Ever’s “Aqua” line of eyeshadow pencils are really great for underwater photoshoots, too.
Rock it like a Redhead!