How to Become a Make-Up Artist in 3 Simple Steps

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What is a Make-Up Artist?

Make-up artists are professionally trained artists that transform the skin and improve its appearance of by using make up paints and other accessories.

Continue reading and learn how to become a make-up artist.

The daily duties of a make-up artist are:

  • Deciding if the physical outcome of the client is satisfying
  • Ordering the materials she/he needs from the suppliers
  • Making draft notes and initial sketches
  • Organizing a plan of action and a timetable
  • Explaining to the client the process
  • Applying make up to the client
  • Making sure the make-up fits with client’s colors and clothes
  • Staying updated on new techniques

Make-up artists need to pay attention to the details as even the smallest detail can change their clients’ appearance.

They also need to have critical thinking skills and a good aesthetic because they will need to decide which make up fits better a client, depending on several factors.

Good communication skills are also needed as they come in touch with clients on a daily basis and they have to be able to explain them the make-up process.

Make-up artists are mostly employed by the entertainment and beauty industry.

They work at television and movie studios, fashion shows, photography studios and beauty salons.

They also work exclusively with a person, travel with them offering their services.

The average salary of a make-up artist is $44,310
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Make-Up Artist Specialties

Theatrical make-up

Theatrical or stage make up is used along with stage lighting with the goal of highlighting the actor’s face in order to make his/her expressions visible to the audience. This can be achieved by defining the lips, eyes and facial bones.

Fashion make-up

Fashion make-up is mainly used in fashion runway and fashion photography. It is also commonly used in films and television.

(FX make-up) Special make-up effects

FX make-up is mostly used at film shooting. Make-up artists use plaster casting, prosthetics, theatrical blood and other mediums to achieve non-human appearances and metaphysical characteristics.

Bridal make-up

Bridal make-up is a relatively new sector of make-up. There are several looks that can be given to the bride like glamorous, ethnic, or contemporary.

Airbrushing

At this technique the make-up artist uses an airbrush spraying various ingredients like water based color and alcohol.

High definition

At high definition make-up they use reflectors, lights and various ingredients like minerals to make the skin flawless.
What is a Make-Up Artist

Becoming a Make Up Artist

Step 1: High School Preparation

High School Courses for Make-Up Artists

Physics and Chemistry

It maybe sounds a bit odd but these two classes will help you with your make-up artist studies.

They will help you understand the composition of the ingredients you will be using, how they react to the skin if they cancel each other out etc.

Art & Design

It is common sense to take art & design classes as an aspiring make-up artist. Take classes in art and color theory if offered.

These classes will help you develop a basic sense of aesthetics that will be really helpful later.

Step 2: Complete an Accredited Training Program in Make-up Artistry

Make-up Artistry Certificate Program 3 months to 1 year

These short term programs are usually offered by technical schools and state universities.

They are about 18 semester credit hours programs and are offered either on-campus or online.

Due to the practical nature of this profession we suggest to complete an on campus program.

It is easy to get accepted as you will only need a high school diploma or something equivalent like GED.

Curriculum

Required Courses (12 credits)

  • Culture and Appearance
  • Fundamentals of Makeup for Beauty and Fashion
  • Advanced Principles and Techniques of Makeup for Fashion and Beauty
  • Professional Level Challenges in Makeup Artistry

Electives (6 credits)

  • Introduction to the Visual Arts
  • Art in Western Civilization: Ancient Through Medieval
  • Art in Western Civilization: Renaissance through Modern
  • Textile and Apparel Industry
  • Stage Make-Up
  • Advanced Stage Make-Up

The cost of a Make-up Artistry Certificate Program is relatively low and ranges from $1,800 to $19,500.

When deciding which college or university to attend, we strongly recommend contacting them for further information and details.

Click the button below to get free info about accredited certificate programs near you.
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Associate’s Degree in Cosmetology program 2 years

Because there is no make-up artistry associate’s degree program you can get a cosmetology associates degree with make-up orientation.

These are 48 – 75 credit hour programs and can be completed mostly on campus.

It is easy to get accepted at a program like that, as you will only need a high school diploma or a GED.

Curriculum

Core Courses

  • Freshman Cosmetology
  • Junior Salon I
  • Junior Salon III
  • Tinting I
  • Tinting II
  • Senior Salon I
  • Senior Salon II
  • Rules, Regulations, and Physiology
  • Intermediate Cosmetology Lab
  • Resolution of Skin Diseases and Disorders
  • Intermediate Cosmetology Lab II
  • Chemistry and Chemical Services
  • Basic Business Practices

Electives

  • Introduction to Hair Coloring and Styling
  • Intermediate Hair Coloring and Styling
  • Advanced Hair Coloring and Styling
  • Contemporary Hair Styling
  • Fundamentals of Chemistry
  • Fundamentals of Chemistry Lab

The cost of an Associate’s Degree in Cosmetology program is relatively low and ranges from $6,000 to $26,000.

When deciding which college or university to attend, we strongly recommend contacting them for further information and details.

Click the button below to get free info about accredited certificate programs near you.
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Associate’s in specialized business degree (Special Make-up effects program) 2 years

If you want to become a special make-up effects artist there are some associate’s degree programs available.

They are 70 semester credit hours programs that can be completed on-campus. The admission requirements are a high school diploma or a GED.

Curriculum

  • Sculpture I
  • Cosmetic Make-Up
  • Foundations of Make-Up Effects
  • Anatomy and Anthropology
  • Hair and Beards
  • Sculpture II
  • Mold Making and Casting
  • Digital Sculpting
  • Critical Histories of the Arts
  • Introduction to Psychology
  • Advanced Make-Up Effects
  • Beginning Animatronics
  • Advanced Mold Making and Casting
  • Special Effects from Page to Screen

Animatronics track

  • Professional Skills Workshop / Make-Up Portfolio
  • Advanced Animatronics
  • Special Effects Props

Fashion and Performance track

  • Basic Airbrush Illustration
  • Professional Skills Workshop / Make-Up Portfolio
  • Special Effects Props
  • Fashion and Performance Make-Up

The cost of an Associate’s in specialized business degree (Special Make-up effects program) is $33,500.

When deciding which college or university to attend, we strongly recommend contacting them for further information and details.

Click the button below to get free info about accredited certificate programs near you.
Find a School

Step3: Get licensed

While there is no official make up artistry licensing, in order to practice this profession you will need a certification in cosmetology.

Requirements

While the requirements vary from state to state all states require to be at least 18 years old and have completed a professional training (1,000 to 2,000 hours of theoretical and practical training) in most cases from an accredited from your state’s board school.

Examination

The exam is divided at 2 parts the written exam and the physical exam.

The written examination of the National-Interstate Council of State Boards of Cosmetology covers the following areas:

  • Sanitation and Infection Control Procedures
  • Advanced Knowledge of Human Physiology and Anatomy
  • Structure and function of the layers of the skin
  • Advanced Knowledge of Skin Conditions and Disorders
  • Chemistry
  • Cosmetic Ingredients
  • Factors that Affect the Skin
  • Dermatological Terms
  • Plastic Surgery Terms
  • Skin Analysis
  • Exfoliation Methods
  • Electricity and Use of Various Electrical Equipment
  • Advanced Methods of Hair Removal
  • Advanced Facial Treatments
  • Advanced Body Treatments
  • Lymphatic Drainage
  • Pre/Post Operative Treatment

The physical examination of the National-Interstate Council of State Boards of Cosmetology covers the following areas:

  • Cleansing the Face
  • Setup and Client Protection
  • Ultrasonic Exfoliation Treatment
  • Manual Lymphatic Drainage
  • Particle Microdermabrasion
  • Jessner’s or 20% BHA Chemical Peel
  • Advanced Facial Treatment – LED
  • Electricity and Electrical Equipment – Microcurrent
  • Dry Exfoliation and Mud or Seaweed Mud
  • Advanced Body Treatment

 Cost: $40

How Long Does it take to Become a Make-Up Artist and How Much does it Cost?

Option1: Certificate

Degree Time Cost
Certificate 3 months – 1 year$1,800- $19,500
Certification 1 month$40
Total 4 months – 1 year $1,840 - $19,540

Option 2: Associate’s Degree

 

Degree Time Cost
Associates Degree2 years$6,000 to $33,500
Certification 1 month $40
Total 2 years & 1 month $6,040 - $33,540

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