Getting Started as a Makeup Artist

Interested in being a makeup artiist?

Looking for some advice for getting started as a makeup artist? Let our own expert get you started on your dream.

Interesting in Getting Started as a Makeup Artist

Reader Question

Hi Dana,I'm really interested in getting a job in the make up or cosmetic industry? How would I go about doing that? I hope you can help as I'm desperate and in need of some guidance.

~~Many thanks, Sascha

Expert Reply

Dear Sascha,

What I suggest you do is start using the Internet to research schools where you live. That would be the first step. Most schools only teach you the basics and it is out in the "real-world" where you learn advanced skills. You may also need to take additional training (like airbrushing) AFTER you get your basic cosmetology license. This must be your first goal. Get licensed in the state that you live in and where you will eventually be working. Then try to start working either for a salon or freelance or both. Most of what I learned as a makeup artist was on my own, after beauty school. Good luck!

~~Dana

Reader Question

Dear Dana,

My daughter is in her senior year of high school and is still not sure what career direction she wants to take. She is VERY good at doing makeup though. Where in our area could she find a good, well-rounded school for makeup artistry (one that would be taken seriously on a resume)? Or is there a series of College Courses you could recommend. We live in the San Francisco (East Bay Area) California.

~~Thank You, Stephanie

Expert Reply

Dear Stephanie,

In your area of the country, The San Francisco Institute of Esthetics and Cosmetology, a Paul Mitchell Partner School, offers programs for students preparing for the California state board exam in Cosmetology, Esthetics or Manicuring. For new students the curriculum is designed to prepare them with the skills they need to become successful professionals in today's competitive salon and spa market.

According to their website, the Institute is dedicated to providing programs that support the lifelong learning process and need to stay current in the rapidly changing environment of Esthetics and Cosmetology. This state-of-the-art facility is located in the South of Market district in San Francisco, CA. What I love about the Paul Mitchell organization is that they have donated a sum total of $120,000 to Hurricane Katrina relief. Good luck to your daughter!

~~Dana

Reader Question

Dear DanaAre there retail department stores that hold senior make up seminars?

~~Thank you, Mary

Expert Reply

Hi Mary,

Not that I'm aware of unfortunately. You may want to contact your local department store, get connected to either the Chanel, Lancome or Estee Lauder counter, and ask if one of the makeup artists could spend some time with you. It may simply mean you might be expected to buy a few new products for the free service but it could definitely be worth it. If you have specific questions, please send them along to me and I will be more than happy to answer them! ~~Dana

Reader Question

Dear Dana,I have been studying makeup application and have been a makeup artist approximately 6 years now. My goal in life is to open my own makeup store and teach classes on application. What my question to you is - do you know how someone like me goes about setting up accounts with certain makeup lines in hopes of carrying their products in my store? Please let me know where to begin.....

Thanks much, MakeupM

Expert Reply

Dear MakeupM,

You may want to do some online research to start. Make a list of the makeup lines you want to carry then search out their websites. Contact their sales rep for your particular area. Usually each company will have a particular sales person/account representative listed by region. If not, contact the head of sales or anyone else just to get started. You can even visit your local department store to stop at the counters and inquire about who you could contact. Have business cards made ready to hand out too. Good luck!!

~~Dana

Reader Question

Dear Dana,

''I am a make up artist/beginner/ from Moldova - a far away and small country, and I need your advice. I like very much the book of Robert Jones "Makeup Makeovers" and as I want to implement his techniques in my work, I am trying to find some similar eye shadow colors on the local market. But we don't have a big choice on that, only Mary Kay, Isadora, Bourjois and professional Peggy Sage (from the make up school). Please suggest me a company that has the colors most like (if not the same) that Robert Jones uses.

Thank you very much!

Olga

Expert Reply

Dear Olga,As I am not that familiar with Robert Jones' makeup, I'm not sure what colors he is using. However, I would suggest simply adding to your makeup kit the basics. Neutrals like browns, grays, plums, and a variety of base colors like apricot, champagne, cream, white and silver. You can't go wrong with these basics to start. A good website to visit is www.camerareadycosmetics.com. They have a few eye shadow palettes you may be interested in ordering.

~~Dana

Reader Question

Dear Dana

I have been constantly searching for the perfect beauty school. Making sure they are accredited and professional. Right now I am in school for fashion marketing, but I want to go to beauty school to become a professional make-up artist. I don't know where to start in picking the best school to attend, one that can teach me air-brushing and more... I just want something beyond the normal experience of a basic beauty school.

Do you have any in mind ? What do I need to do to become a professional make-up artist? I want to work with celebrities, models, photographers...just, exciting people who are willing to take the ordinary outside of the box and challenge my creativity.

~~Thank you, Roxanne

Expert Reply

Dear Roxanne,What I suggest you do is start using the Internet to research schools where you live. That would be the first step. Most schools only teach you the basics and it is out in the "real-world" where you learn advanced skills. You may also need to take additional training-like airbrushing after you get your basic cosmetology license. This must be your first goal. Get licensed in the state that you live in and where you will eventually be working, and then try to start working either for a salon or freelance or both. Most of what I learned as a makeup artist was on my own, after beauty school.

~~Dana

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Getting Started as a Makeup Artist