Education Makeup Artist Career: The 3000 Billion Dollar Industry Awaits...

Makeup Artist Career: The 3000 Billion Dollar Industry Awaits YOU!


makeup artist specializes in the art of putting on makeup. It is a highly promising career choice for both men and women. Yes, we all know how to put on makeup for ourselves. But a makeup artist is a professional who knows how to do professional makeup when and where required.

He or she may work for movies, television, live shows, and private clients. Makeup artists can work in beauty salons or parlors as a professional Beautician. Moreover, You may work in counters or stores for the demonstration of beauty products. Many large companies who produce makeup products hire such professionals.

In other words, makeup is not only to make them look more presentable but also suitable. And sometimes composition is also used to create unique looks for artists and actors. The right use of brushes and colors may also make people disfigured by burns or accidents look ‘normal.’ You can see there are many avenues of work for makeup artists.

How to Become a Makeup Artist.

Personality Traits.

You need to be a creative and arty person with a flair for color and brushes. Remember, those are your actual weapons to beautify the World! As you will be managing beauty conscious people, it is essential to have strong people management skills. You need to be diplomatic, tactful, and sometimes sympathetic. Moreover, you should be an excellent communicator, though you will have a lot of listening to do!

An eye for detail and discipline are also essential qualities. For instance, you should have the abilities to reach perfection while standing on your feet for a long time. Please note, clients need a pleasant, smiling face with strong confidence. Above all, you must keep the larger picture in mind.

Skills Required for a Makeup Artist.

  1. First of all, you must be creative – filled with original ideas.
  2. Knowledge of modern makeup procedures and products is added benefit.
  3. Confidence is what you need while performing makeup.
  4. Sometimes you need to be a little Diplomatic and Tactful.
  5. Flexible to any work schedule and location.
  6. Self-driven.
  7. Good communication skills.
  8. Pleasing personality.


Education Icon

You should have a minimum high school diploma to start. That is the base requirement for any makeup course. If you do not want to join any professional course, no problem. For example, there are so many contents, videos available online which you can check. You can study on your own and practice.

To be accurate, the more exercise you do – the more confident you be. However, if you have an opportunity, try to apprentice with a professional makeup artist. Working at a beauty salon as a student is also a good option.

The freshest option is joining online courses. Those do not require any experience or education to enter. But, the downside of those courses is they lack practical on-hand guidance.


Here you should know that every country and state have their own rules for approving a makeup artist license. It is a must for applying for a professional career.

For example, the USA Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) guides that every makeup artist must complete a formal training to be able to apply for State License. Every state has its licensing process. Read here for state-wise details and requirements.

Certification Courses.

Makeup Artist Education

There are three major certification courses available. All the courses teach how to work with a palette of colors, study skin types, and tones, even hair colors, and styles. You will learn different makeup processes based on season, day, evening, night, special occasions, and fashion. There are both theory & practical sessions. Once it is complete, you may try for getting a job, or start your venture. Here is an overview of the courses:

You may Like: 30 Ways to apply Foundation on face.

Makeup Artistry Certification.

It is one of the most demanded courses. It is of shorter duration and perfect for those who are not able to attend a full-time course. As mentioned above, it has both theory and practical classes.

Moreover, some training schools offer internship in their salons where you can gain real-life experience. You may also earn some money if you do well. The course involves:

  1. Makeup Fundamentals.
  2. Basic make up techniques.
  3. Advanced makeup techniques.
  4. Fashion makeup.
Diploma in Cosmetology.

This course improves your overall knowledge of Cosmetology. You must have basic knowledge about makeup artistry to get the maximum benefit out of it. This course involves:

  1. Fundamentals of Skin Care.
  2. Knowledge about various cosmetics.
  3. Hand-on experience and analysis of various cosmetic products.
  4. Customer Management.
Degree in Cosmetology.

During this course, you will gain in-depth knowledge on the Diploma course subjects, plus other specialized courses. You will have practical times more so that you can master the topic. So this course is suitable for people who can spend more time practicing. The specialized courses involve:

  1. Safety and Precautions.
  2. Sanitation processes.
  3. Modern Beauty tools.
  4. Business Management.
Theater Degree.

It is an optional course. If you wish to build your career in film or theater, you must attend this course. This course is specially designed to suit the industry requirement. The additional subjects are:

  1. Quick touch-up (makeups during shootings).
  2. Special Effects (e.g. Wound marks, face-over etc.).
  3. Scene based makeup (based on the characteristic of the actor).
  4. Full Body makeup.

Makeup Artist Schools.

In the recent past, finding a makeup artist school was tough. Now, the situation has changed as most of the technical schools and universities have included the course. It takes 2-4 years to complete the courses. However, some private schools offer shorter-duration courses; typically less than two years. And you can do simultaneously with other classes or jobs.

Before joining any course, you must check if the school has Certified and accredited by the National Accrediting Commission of Career Arts and Sciences (NACCAS). You should also check if the State Licensing Department approves those.

Top 10 Makeup Artist Schools in USA.
  1. Montclair State University.
  2. Santa Monica College.
  3. Milwaukee Technical College.
  4. Mt San Antonio College.
  5. Augusta Technical College.
  6. Cosmix School of Makeup Artistry.
  7. Cameo College of Essential Beauty.
  8. Emerson College.
  9. Boca Beauty Academy.
  10. Empire Beauty School.

Makeup Artist Jobs.

Career Icon

To be exact, as a makeup artist, you have unlimited options to progress your career. You can work at salons, spas, health farms, skin clinics. Production houses, advertising agencies, movie, drama industry, model photographers have enormous demands for theme artists.

Cosmetics counters, stores are great places to gain experience. When you build a portfolio and reputation, you can get to work with top stars, plays, live shows, celebrities, special occasions, and more.

Another good option to work as a freelance makeup consultant, a makeup teacher, or even work with companies making makeup products. You can also open your makeup salon or be an online beauty guide. I know some makeup artists who have their beauty channels on YouTube. It is unbelievable but true that they earn thousands from online only.

Makeup Artist Career Path

A makeup artist should go through 4 essential steps:

Certification Courses.

You must have a certification followed by Diploma or Degree in Cosmetology or related fields. We have already discussed this above.

State License.

In the USA, you need the State License for a makeup artist career. You need to be certified by an approved makeup artist school, followed by attending an exam arranged by the State.

Gaining of Experience is very important.

As you know, the professional makeup artist needs to work with precision and high perfection. So gaining experience is very much essential for career exposure.

Scope of Jobs.

Proper exposure and experience in related fields can help you get a better job. Even if you are on your venture as a freelancer, it helps to get regular. Apart from your domain knowledge, you need to develop qualities like market knowledge, listening, customer service, and management skills.

Job description.

As you have to work with a vast array of products, you should know them inside out. The same goes for the skin. It is of utmost importance that you know what kind of product will suit what skin complexion.

You should also know about all kinds of skin-care products, makeup removal products, anti-aging creams, colors, foundations, lipsticks, nail polish, eye makeup, etc. Moreover, you must know how to camouflage the dark spots and highlight an even tone. Deciding styles and looks based on the face or hair types are very much significant.

If you are working with models and screen stars, you will also have to learn specialized makeup techniques. It includes making a person look older or younger, or lighting effects for a specific scene.

You may have to create particular ‘looks’ as well and work with the director’s vision of how the screen persona has to look. As I stated above, you need to undergo a Special makeup course for that.

Job Responsibilities.
  1. Deciding potential clients.
  2. Client’s requirement analysis.
  3. Plan desired outcome.
  4. budget plan.
  5. Decide approx. time required (very important in Film industry).
  6. Beauty products selection and arrangement.
  7. Ordering artificial items like Wigs, silicon pads (for face-over) etc.
  8. Designing draft sketches and presentation to the clients.
  9. Performing individual allergy and skin sensitivity test.
  10. Makeup on client on scheduled date and time.
Makeup Artist Job Requirements.

Please note that job requirements may vary from clients to clients. Here are a few of the most demanded criteria you should try to develop and highlight in your resume.

  1. Ability to Discuss, understand, and plan to achieve client specified look.
  2. Gaining experience is definitely a positive aspect for this profession. You must highlight all your experiences in the CV.
  3. You must be capable of understanding skin types and plan makeup accordingly.
  4. Should be aware of the adverse reactions of the products you are using.
  5. Excellent time management capability is another most important factor .
  6. If you are planning to work with any agency, you need to be team player.
  7. Should be able to work in fast-paced work environment.
  8. You must be flexible with the time and location as you may need to work weekends and late nights.
  9. You may need to multi task.
  10. Must be enthusiastic about latest cosmetic trends, tools, and developments.
Makeup Artist Resume Template.

Here is a sample resume template which you can use for preparing your Profile. (Please Note: it is just a sample Resume and you must modify it as and where required. To download full CV, check the link below).

Makeup Artist Resume

To download this Resume template, CLICK HERE

Find latest Makeup Artist Jobs at

Salary of a Makeup Artist.


The salary range for a makeup artist is between $18,000 and $115,000 per year. The hourly range is $9.00-$55.00 per hour. Good freelance makeup artists can make from between $100 to $2,000 a day. It depends on experience, location, and industry.

Please note: These values are excluding the Tips amount, which is very common, and makeup artists can earn a lot of money from Tips. As per the Bureau of Labor Statistics data, the average salary of a makeup artist is around $60,000 before Tips.

Makeup artist for actors and production houses, fashion industries, and advertising sectors are the highest-earning group.

Makeup Artist Salary Charts.

Makeup Artist Salary
Makeup Artist Salary (Hourly)

Industry-wise Salary Chart.

Industry-wise Average Salary (Annual)

Bridal makeup is another specialty, and if you are known for it, you can get more money during the wedding season. Salon or cosmetics counter job payments depend on the locality, and based on your expertise and experience you have. Makeup artists can find work in most places and can even open their salons or teaching courses.

Final Words

As I mentioned above that the opportunities for Makeup Artists are unlimited. Yes, it’s true as you can see. Industry-specific jobs, freelancing, online training, spa, salon, beauty center, product selling – a few to name. As per last year data, it’s a $3000 Billion industry.
So if you have a love for skin, sense of beauty trend you must opt for this profession. And I am sure it will never go wrong.

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