A makeup artist may be employed in different fields, such as the entertainment and the fashion industry. While the salary differs based on the industry, experience, location, and personal ability, the average salary that a makeup artist is known to earn ranges between $400 to $2000 on a daily basis, and annually it is somewhere around $35,000.
A makeup artist is a person who is an expert in giving the desired look to a person who needs to appear on TV, fashion shows, concerts, etc. The type of makeup to be applied on the performer mainly depends upon the specific needs of the person or the show. So, just applying normal makeup on the models and performers is not the only thing that a makeup artist is expected to do. The requirements actually vary from simply hiding blemishes to applying special effects make up that can be anything from showing a young person aged or creating a monster out of a good-looking actor. For a job that is so demanding, the salary range is equally great. Here’s a look into the figures that a makeup artist is capable of earning.
Salary Range of a Makeup Artist
- Television and Broadway: US $45,000 to US $75,000 annually
- Full-time Employees: Aforementioned salary range with other benefits, like, health insurance, paid vacation, retirement plans, etc.
- Movie Industry: US $90,000 annually, approximately
- Personal Care Industry: US $28,000 anually
All makeup artists are not salaried employees. Many experienced and highly acclaimed makeup artists tend to freelance or work on projects. There are others, who tend to work under contracts by multinational cosmetic companies, production houses, magazines, etc. Some makeup artists, tend to become personal makeup advisors for celebrities and personalities. A few create their own beauty houses and give consultations to those who come seeking for a makeover. Thus, the makeup artists salary range depends on their professional area and experience. Their salaries also upon the type of client and the project and the popularity of the makeup artist. Prior experience and nature of the job are also important factors that affect the average salary for a makeup artist. For example, a shoot for an editorial piece in a magazine will not pay the makeup artist as much as an ad (shoot) for the same magazine. However, salary of makeup artists during the initial struggling stages tends to be low and in some cases, they may have to work as a freelancer.
Although the make up artist field is exciting and can be highly profitable, quite often it is difficult to prepare for it and then find a suitable job in it. Many makeup artists have to rely on other related jobs to slowly gain experience and make a successful career in this field. But if you have the talent, patience and self-confidence, you can do wonders in this field.
Skills Required by Makeup Artists
The most important attribute that makes a makeup artist successful is his creativity and ability to visualize a specific image and then bring it to life by using makeup, wigs, prosthesis, etc. But the artist has to be smart enough to understand the color and skin tone of the person and then apply the appropriate make up. The kind and amount of makeup to be applied varies from person to person as makeup that looks good on a singer may not look appropriate on a business executive.
Along with having good knowledge of the makeup applying techniques, a makeup artist has to also be well versed with other necessary parameters regarding the setting or field he is working in, like, if the artist works in a show business, he has to be knowledgeable about the effects of stage lighting or costumes on the performer’s appearance and accordingly apply the make up. If working in a theater or performance environment, the makeup artist has to be wise enough in analyzing the script to ensure that the characters end up looking the way they are described. However, these decisions should be made in collaboration with directors and costume designers. Also, working in a particular set up also requires different make up ideas. For examples, if the shoot is scheduled in a hot environment, the makeup used should not run due to the perspiration of the artist. These are certain fine points, that a makeup artist is expected to know. Now let’s get on to the more interesting part of the makeup artist salary range or how much does a makeup artist make after a brief look at the qualifications and job prospects of a makeup artist.
Qualification and Job Prospects
Education or training in the necessary artistic skills for this field cannot be acquired from normal schooling. Though some college preparation may help you, quite often it is the trade school type of education and on the job training that can help you to excel in this field. The aspiring students can specialize in this field at schools of cosmetology and can acquire or improve their skills by participating in amateur community theater or other performing arts or learn from others having more experience. Apart from studying or learning general hair and makeup techniques, students should also take up specialized makeup courses, like, course in media make up, production arts, etc.
The best route to a job in this field is to volunteer with smaller organizations in order to build an impressive and attractive portfolio containing a collection of photographs of work samples. In some television stations, theater companies or fashion design houses, internships are available which can help students in implementing what they have learned and enhancing their talents. Students having certificates in beauty therapy, make up, fashion, etc. can start their career by being an assistant to an experienced makeup artist or by working in some beauty salons. Makeup artists, if so inclined, can also work in departmental stores to sell mass-market makeup products or work as consultants for some cosmetic companies. In short, there is no shortcut to making it big in the field. You have to work your way up to the top, and leave your mark there.