Working as a makeup artist offers flexibility, the chance to be your own boss, travel the world and mingle with the stars – whilst earning money doing something you love. This lucrative career is incredibly rewarding. Experts such as Sarah Meredith are testament to how rewarding a career in make-up can really be.
But where to start?
Here you’ll get the lowdown on the best way to begin your journey from dreamer to professional make-up artist.
What skills to I need?
Any professional will tell you, that it’s not just about learning how to apply makeup – you’ll need to know all about skin care, as well as keeping track of the latest styles, trends and new products. The makeup industry is constantly evolving, and you’ll always need to stay one step ahead of the game. The most accomplished makeup artists can recreate a look from any era, so you’ll need to do your research when it comes to things like vintage styling.
Learning the theory of makeup is one thing – actually putting those skills into practice requires creativity, artistic flair and self-belief. You’ll need great communication skills to create a finished look that matches your clients’ expectations. Diplomacy may be required when it comes to a difference of opinion regarding what will suit your client, so you need to be able to listen and communicate with confidence.
To be a successful makeup artist, you need to be able to perform under pressure and be willing to work long, often unsociable hours. Being a makeup artist is rarely a 9-5 job! And like many jobs, once you’ve completed any training, you’ll find yourself constantly learning new skills and joining the latest make-up classes and product launches.
What are my career prospects?
Qualifying as a makeup artist can open doors into the worlds of theatre, film, television and fashion, so the possibilities are endless!
If you want to break into the TV and film industry, be aware that you are usually expected to be qualified in hairdressing as well as makeup. Celebrity makeup artists are usually freelance, but can earn good money if they are successful.
Not all professional makeup artists work in the showbiz industry – you may choose to specialise in bridal makeup or work in a beauty salon. Ultimately, the choice is yours.
Where to start?
To be taken seriously as a professional makeup artist, you will need to be qualified and experienced. First, choose a reputable training school that offers first-class teaching from expert tutors. You can choose from a wide range of courses that will equip you with the relevant skills to become a makeup artist – from one day taster courses to intensive training packages. When it comes to make-up, experience is everything. so take advantage of opportunities that will add credibility to your CV. Rates of pay may be low at first, but think of it as laying the foundations of your career.