How Much Money Do Makeup Artists Make?

By Subodh / August 24, 2014

When you stay glued to the TV screen watching those models scorching the ramp or marvel at those Hollywood heartthrobs flaunting age defying looks, it is natural to think of the secret behind this. No matter how many Botox shots those divas take or go under the surgeon’s knife, getting such porcelain perfect skin would not be possible without the skills of makeup artists! While the makeup professionals largely remain in the shadow and their clients hog the limelight, they actually earn reasonably good amounts of money.

The Work Environment

As it is, makeup artists work in various environments ranging from film studios to fashion show venues. Their services are also a prerequisite in the television industry. Some of them get employed in cosmetic stores, large hairdressing salons and a few lucky ones can become favorites of celebs and actors. Based on client type and needs, they may have to work outdoors as well. This is often the case with makeup professionals working with various film and TV studios. This may involve working at irregular timing.

Makeup artist

How Much Money Makeup Artists Can Make?

This is a common question asked by a section of the mass who have no inkling about inside tales of the showbiz industry. This can vary on several factors, but a new artist can earn as much as $26,000 a year. However, a veteran artist with several years experience and steady reputation can make over $40000 a year or more.

Factors That Affect Pay OF Makeup Professionals

There are a number of aspects that are responsible for discrepancies in pay package of makeup professionals:

  • Type

Not every makeup artist caters to the same type of client, as it is. A professional catering to celerity clients may make more than a colleague who works in a salon and gets a fixed salary. Some artists also work freelance and get good amounts for working in events like wedding or personal events of their clients. Artists working in video and film industry usually earn more than those working in salons.

  • Time Of Work

Those make up professionals who are working with companies, studios or salons generally get fixed salary and it is proportionate to the number of working hours in most instances. This is where self-employed makeup professionals have an edge. They can work for long hours based on assignments and makes the most out of it.

  • Range Of Services

Professional makeup artists often offer allied services. Some of them may be well versed in haircut and pedicure, for example. They find it easier to get new clients and earn more in less time.

  • Location of Work

The location of work can also have a direct impact on earnings of a professional make up artist. For example, a person working in a posh studio in California or LA will earn more than a colleague who is working in downtown or suburban areas.

  • Skill Set And Qualification

While cosmetologists working in spas and salons need license and training, this is not the case with most makeup artists. They can do without much formal education. While many fashion institutes and even universities offer specialized training course for makeup industry, it has been observed that a majority of professionals pick up the skills while interning or on the job. To race ahead of intense competition in the industry, some of them often opt for short term certification courses offered by skincare and cosmetics giants.

The Bottom Line

Like other professionals catering to needs of showbiz and glamour world, make-up artists can make a lot of money if they work hard, sharpen their skills and remain consistent. While competition will be there you can use various means to get an edge over competitors.

  • Some makeup artists are trying to leverage the tremendous power and reach of social media nowadays to shine in their career. Sites like Facebook and LinkedIN can be mentioned in this context.
  • Apart from that, creating and maintaining an online portfolio goes a long way in getting new clients and retaining existing lot.
  • Even in this technology driven age, word of mouth has not lost its appeal. There are several instances where make-up artists have bagged big clients and prestigious assignments through client referrals.