How to Become a Freelance Makeup Artist

Many makeup artists choose to freelance rather than work for someone else. Freelancing gives you the opportunity to be your own boss, work as much or little as you want, and control the jobs and clients you take on. As a freelance makeup artist, you should focus on a specific path, such as wedding makeup, print or fashion shoots, or theatrical and special effects. Becoming a licensed esthetician will give you the core training in makeup application and skin care needed for this profession.

Instructions

    • 1

      Find an approved cosmetology school on the website of the licensing department or cosmetology board in your state. Complete the necessary classroom and hands-on salon training. Depending on your state's licensing requirements, complete the specific number of hours of training. Take your state licensing board exam to obtain your esthetician license. If you decide to pursue a career doing theatrical, special effects or television and film makeup, you may want to find a program that specializes in this area.

    • 2

      Take a job in a salon or retail store or with a cosmetic company. This position will give you the foundation and training needed before venturing out on your own as a freelancer. You will work with people of all shapes, colors, skin types and eye colors. Additionally, you will gain experience working closely with people and honing your sales and customer service skills, regardless of what specialty of the business you decide to work in.

    • 3

      Take before and after photos of your work. Place the pictures in your portfolio book and create a website to showcase them. Also post testimonials from your customers on your website.

    • 4

      Buy necessary supplies, such as brushes, applicators, spray bottles, sponges and a variety of makeup. Several makeup companies allow you to purchase cosmetics at a discount as a professional artist. Buy a makeup train case to house your supplies and makeup, as you will likely need to carry them with you on jobs. Many cases are made of metal and contain partitions to organize your items. Larger cases come with wheels for easier transport.

    • 5

      Venture out on your own by offering to do makeup for fashion shoots, fashion shows, weddings and other special events for free or a low fee. If aiming to do theater or film makeup, intern for a production company and start with local productions. Determine your pricing, by the job and by the hour. As a freelancer, you should buy liability insurance.

    • 6

      Network using all of the connections you have made through your previous jobs, industry events and school. Your school may help you find connections and offer career counseling. Join unions if you work in the entertainment industry. Sign up for websites that advertise freelance jobs and put the word out that you are freelancing. Participate as a vendor in wedding shows.

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References

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