Torres balances running, makeup, YouTube channel

Written By Lauren Ortego, Co-Copy Desk Chief

Being a full-time student, collegiate athlete, working two jobs and running a YouTube channel with over 11,000 subscribers sounds like a full plate for a 21-year-old, but Eric “Spiffy” Torres came with his own fork, knife and appetite.

“I’ve always been very energetic, very just out there and outgoing,” Torres said. “I was always involved in pretty much everything. I kept busy with extracurricular activities; whether I was in the rotary club, student council and anything else I could throw on top of that, I would.”

The Texas-native first heard about Point Park’s then budding track program back in 2014 from an email from his now coach, Kelly Parsley, and the rest was simply finding a major that fit him. He eventually decided on public relations and advertising.

“I had known nothing about Pittsburgh, or Point Park in general,” Torres said. “So, I just kind of said, ‘You know, why not? Let me go ahead and take this chance and see what this school’s all about’ – and I loved it.”

Torres’ mother was the person who jump-started his running career, “throwing” him into it at the age of five, and the appeal of the challenge that comes with solo sports has kept him in it ever since.

“He’s really nice and outgoing; he’s very supportive,” Carlos Polanco, a teammate of Torres’ and business management major said. “I think our team is very close.”

Even though he enjoys the solo aspects of running, Torres is still very much a team player. Coach Parsley suggested that Torres was like the glue that keeps the men’s and women’s track teams from being totally separate, as his demeanor has earned him friends on both teams.

“Eric is very charismatic, people flock to him because of his personality,” Parsley said. “He’s a really good balance for our team in terms of helping connect our men’s and women’s teams so there isn’t a big divide.”

Thanks to this practically life-long career, Torres has grown accustomed to the packed schedule he now maintains. Adding two jobs into the mix, one at Whole Foods and the other at Sephora, is enough to stress most people out, but Torres remains positive.

“Oh, I love it there,” Torres said, regarding his Sephora job. “I just love getting to play with makeup, talking to clients about the different products and seeing all the new arrivals that we get.”

Torres has been wearing makeup since he was 17-years-old, starting small at first, but eventually becoming more comfortable with bigger, bolder looks.

“I was a junior in high school and I remember my first time wearing makeup, I actually walked into Sephora by myself,” Torres said, laughing. “Not to the drug store or anything, I went straight for Sephora.”

Makeup isn’t just a hobby for Torres. He hopes to, with the help of his PR and advertising degree, transform it into a career with his YouTube channel ‘SpiffdUp.’ There, he does everything from makeup tutorials how to look “Fall af” to answering questions from his subscribers to talking about everyday life situations.

His channel, which he estimates to be about five years old, currently has 11,052 subscribers, to whom he refers to as “his family.”

“[YouTube] was one of the main outlets that allowed me to wear makeup and be a little bit more comfortable,” Torres said. “It was my excuse so I could be like ‘Mom, I’m wearing this because I have a YouTube channel and I have to.’”

Torres is now a second semester sophomore, after taking a two-year break following his freshman year. During those two years, he lived in Mount Washington for one year and then eventually moved back home to Corpus Christi, where he was first hired at Sephora.

Torres eventually felt everything falling into place perfectly, allowing him to return to school with a better mindset and more motivation.

“I feel like it’s always important for college students… if you feel like you’re not mentally there, yet, don’t invest all the money if you’re not going to take it seriously,” Torres said. “That’s what I was facing the spring semester of my freshman year. I thought, ‘Let me just step back for a second, give me some time to mature up a bit and figure everything out.’”

Looking to the future, Torres is excited that his team is currently ranked number one, as he’d finally get to visit the elusive west coast for the conference meet in Vancouver, Wa. He’s never been farther west than Texas and would love to see a change in scenery.

Torres doesn’t see a change in pace any time soon, and is optimistic about what is to come.

“I like what I do, and I like to stay busy,” Torres said. “I’ve just always been that way.”