It’s the dream of many girls and boys- but what does it really take to be a makeup artist?
In times where Instagram and YouTube are presenting a multitude of young girls that show incredible before and after videos of themselves by countering and highlighting every inch of their face, and sometimes even body, it seems like everyone could become and call themselves make up artist. Even young 13-year-old girls such as @makeupslayzoe or @caseymundy use the term in their profile description on their social network platform, but the self-entitlements need to stop and be clarified.
What does it take to be a makeup artist and how do you build a makeup artistry business?
1: First of all, a makeup artist is someone that has certain knowledge of texture, color, and different skin types. And that requires a lot of practice on as many different faces as possible using a variety of beauty products to build up a solid knowledge and your own makeup kit with the products you know how to get the best results anytime and anywhere. It takes a lot of practice to understand the different techniques and skin conditions. A dry liquid foundation for examples will have an absolutely different result on a 17-year old wrinkle and pimple free face then a 42-year-old woman who might already have fine lines. And not every highlighter suits all skin tones. That is something you won’t learn by only doing makeup on yourself for example.
2: After you gained as much experience as possible, by maybe working as a brand ambassador for an established makeup brand, a young makeup artist should start to work on creating a good portfolio. In order to do so, he or she needs to find different photographers that are willing to work together. Ideally, this work is on a free test base meaning that everyone involved (model, photographer, and makeup artist) are offering to work for free in order to get a good photo in the end. The portfolio should represent the basic skills every makeup artist should know such as a perfect eyeliner or accurate red lips, but also a makeup artist must have its own style and key talent and his or her pictures should demonstrate that.
3: The third step is usually something that seems to be the hardest but it’s super important to gain further experience by becoming an assistant for an already established makeup artist that works in the industry you prefer. Note that not every makeup artist needs to work for fashion editorials, you might be interested in working with celebrities or for the film industry or for bridal or funeral homes, and that’s totally fine. Only through assisting you are able to learn how to work on set, you get introduced to possible future clients and learn many more valuable details.
4: If you feel you are ready to work on your own start with the following: get your own website and share your work and a list of all clients you worked with. Print your business cards and carry them along with you anywhere you go because you never know to whom you might run into, and build up a social network. Contact as many potential clients as possible and don’t lose hope if they don’t get back to you right away. Stay consistent and patient.
5: Last but not least the two keywords – connect and create!
Connect with as many people in your field as possible, show them your work and show interest to work with them! There is no way around marketing yourself! You don’t become a visible and credible makeup artist simply by being highly skilled. So make sure that everyone around you knows about
your business and present it in the best possible way. Be confident and believe in your craft. Another way is to get recommended by an artist you assisted before.
Keep creating new pictures and practice new styles and techniques as much as possible. Becoming a makeup artist and running a business requires you to never let your passion die. Never stop learning and never stop creating. There are always new trends, products, and styles and you need to keep showing that you are up to date.