15 Tips to Get the Best Makeup Artist jobs

Makeup artist jobs: Makeup artists use cosmetology products to produce specific makeup designs for their clients. There is a broad range of specialization for makeup artists, including wedding makeup and special effects work. If you’re interested in becoming a makeup artist, learning about the different specializations can be beneficial.

In this article, we explain what a makeup artist is, list types of makeup artist jobs you can pursue and offer helpful tips for getting a job in the makeup industry.

Read on: 19 Tips to Get the Best Makeup Artist Choice

Makeup artist jobs

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What is a makeup artist?

A makeup artist is a cosmetology professional who designs and executes designs using cosmetology products such as mascara, body paint, blush, foundation and bronzer. Makeup artists can specialize in producing natural looks for events, glamorous looks for fashion or entertainment and highly specific special effects looks for film, television, theatre or events.

How much a makeup artist can earn may depend on factors like their network, performance, professional opportunities and clientele. The national average salary for a makeup artist is $63,273 per year. Other factors, like location, can also affect how much a makeup artist can earn. For example, the highest paying city for makeup artists is Las Vegas, where they can earn an average of $119,906 per year. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, barbers, hairstylists and cosmetologists may expect their field to grow by 19% from 2020 to 2030.

See also: Top 8 Things You Can Do To Become A Successful Makeup Artist

1.  Artistic

An artistic makeup artist may be a professional who creates makeup looks for exhibitions or shows. Artistic makeup artists may use body paint and apply makeup in comprehensive designs using the whole body, rather than just the face. These artists often create makeup looks for the sake of generating interesting art.

2. Branding

A branding makeup artist may work directly with makeup companies and help them develop looks to sell their product. The branding makeup artist works with models during photo shoots and commercial filming and helps them model the product effectively. Branding artists may also provide input on details about the product and how to improve its quality.

Makeup artist jobs


Cinematic makeup artists are those who work with actors and create makeup looks for filming movies. They understand how makeup works with the lighting on set and can adjust it to look natural. A cinematic makeup artist may work with natural makeup looks for contemporary films, or may provide more in-depth looks for glamorous or supernatural characters.

4. Fashion

Makeup artists who work in the fashion industry apply makeup to models in a way that complements their outfits. A fashion makeup artist may work at a fashion show to help models prepare to model clothing. They may also work at fashion photo shoots to help reapply makeup between shots.

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5. Freelance

Freelance makeup artists develop their own client base and take appointments according to their schedules. A freelance makeup artist may specialize in many areas, including fashion, wedding and special effects. Freelance artists often have more freedom and choice in which clients they work with.

6. Influencer

A makeup influencer is a professional who creates makeup content online. They may create content like photos, how-to videos, compilations and challenges. When makeup influencers gain a large enough following, they may begin working with celebrities or creating their own products.

Makeup artist jobs

7. Personal

A personal makeup artist is a professional who works exclusively with a single client. Many celebrities and high-profile figures require constant attention to their appearance and may hire personal makeup artists to travel with them and ensure they look great. For example, this may include actors, public figures on television or politicians.

8. Retail

A retail makeup artist works in a store and helps sell products. They may work behind a specific makeup counter or within a store that specializes in beauty products. These artists model products by helping customers try different types of makeup. The retail artist encourages the customer to purchase the product.

9. Salon

Salon makeup artists work in a traditional salon setting. They may combine their makeup skills with other beauty abilities, like hair or nails. Salon makeup artists may work with clients for weddings, big events and makeovers.

See also: Top 20 Makeup Artist Sample Rules

10. Special Effects

Special effects artists use makeup to produce extreme physical appearances. They may work with film, television or other companies that require special characters. For example, this may include theme parks, haunted attractions or sporting events.

11. Theatrical

Theatrical makeup artists create makeup looks that accentuate features for viewers can see them from the stage. This often includes exaggerated makeup for the brows and lips so viewers can better see the facial expressions of the actors. Theatrical makeup artists may work for a theater or travel with the cast.

Tips for getting a job in the makeup industry

These are some tips for getting a job in the makeup industry:

12. Create a thorough online portfolio.

An online portfolio is a website where you can host pictures of your previous work. Creating an online portfolio can help people discover you generate clients for you to work with.

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13. Focus on professional networking.

 Professional networking is the process of meeting new people and connecting with them. In the makeup industry, having professional contacts can help you gain access to professional opportunities.

Makeup artist jobs

14. Earn your cosmetology license.

Depending on which state you live in, you may require a cosmetology or esthetician license to do makeup for clients. Be sure to check with local regulations and pursue the degree or licensure necessary for legal practice.

15. Learn about new makeup trends.

 Makeup artists can gain attention online and find new clients by learning about new makeup trends and engaging with them. Consider making videos or tutorials for how to create new looks or post content of yourself trying out new makeup trends.

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