Jay works as a makeup artist and as an instructor for makeup and hair styling at a makeup school in Munich. In his spare time, he dresses to the nines and performs as a drag queen on stage and in clubs. More and more often, these are even paid gigs. His drag persona is called Pinay Colada. Jay describes her as a fun and iconic queen whose message is to put fun out into the world. “Pinay is an upgraded version of myself. The things Pinay says and does, I might not have done as Jay in the past, but now I would. But I'd definitely need more time to take heart. Pinay is just more unapologetic.” Being helpful is very important to her. “Pinay likes to call herself the Munich Miss Congeniality. She always has time for other queens to give and show them some tips and tricks regarding makeup and to support them.”
Jay used to work in retail and was stationed in Munich for three months to train new colleagues. During this time, he realized to what extent a city and its environment can have an impact on you. “In 2015, some things happened that weren’t that great. That's when I broke up with my then-boyfriend and my circle of friends got kind of negative. I didn't feel comfortable in Hamburg anymore. Then, in my first three months in Munich, I met my current husband.” Jay then got the offer to stay in Munich. “I thought to myself, this is a good chance for a fresh start.” In 2019, he trained at the makeup school while still working his other job. Only a bit after completing his training, he started his training to be an instructor himself.
Jay likes Munich a lot. He has since made many friends and had no trouble settling in. “I think every city has its pros and cons, and it just depends on the general situation you’re in. How you see a city – either as an anchor for yourself or as a burden you want to jettison.” Jay was quickly able to overcome the initial shyness he felt towards the local LGBTQIA+ community. Today, Jay can hit the gay bars and always meets someone to have a great night out with. Performing as Pinay Colada has certainly played its part in his development, thus the community is very important to her: “If I hadn't been at Pride in 2017 and seen the amazing drag queens in their colorful ball gowns, Pinay wouldn't have been born.”
For Jay, being queer is a big part of who he is. “It took me a long time to like and love who I am more or less and be comfortable with myself. I think that's something that we all kind of have in us as queer people. The need to accept ourselves first and love ourselves the way we are.” As Pinay, Jay likes to break down gender identities and he wants to show that makeup and people who are read as masculine or male don’t contradict each other. When it comes to queer projects, it is important to Jay that queer culture is not simply appropriated by brands but also appreciated. In the future, he wishes to grow as a drag performer and start collaborative projects. In private, he and his husband are preparing to take care of a foster child.