How to Start Working as a Freelance Makeup Artist?

Makeup Artist

A freelance makeup artist will typically work in TV, film, beauty, fashion, or the private sector, i.e. providing makeup for personal clients, from brides to those simply wanting to look great for an event.

A lot of time, makeup artists will work in a number of different sectors, and one day is rarely the same as another.

If you are interested in working as a freelance makeup artist, here are some of the steps you need to take:

1. Don’t start working without a contract

An increasing number of people are working on a freelance basis today, with a global workforce of around 1.1 billion freelancers. However, a lot of these freelancers are working without the protection of a contract.

A freelance contract is a properly organized document where the project scope is detailed, explaining the type of work you will and won’t be doing. This document ensures everyone is on the right page and it provides you with some protection financially too.


You can easily find a makeup contract template online – all you need to do is change the words to suit your work and terms.

2. Enhance your skills with a good makeup course

Getting some experience under your belt is important. Taking a makeup course and acquiring certification helps to show that you know what you are doing.

makeup course

You do not need to go down the formal route. There are a lot of great online makeup courses available today as well.

3. Think about what sort of makeup you want to specialise in

You also need to consider what area of makeup you want to specialise in. Do you want to work with film and TV stars? This is suitable for those who are great at dramatic makeup styles and understand what makeup looks like on camera.

Bridal makeup is a popular area for freelance workers to get into. Or, you may decide to do work for models and fashion brands ahead of runway shows and photoshoots? There are many options, so you need to think about what is going to be the best fit for you.

4. Build a professional make-up kit

Next, you need to put together a good make-up kit. You are going to need a wide range of products, with different shades available.

You may want to stick to one brand, but most make-up artists will combine different products from all of their favourite brands.

Think about the ingredients and what products are going to be kind to the skin as well. Take the time to source your products effectively and read reviews that have been left by others.

5. Put together an impressive portfolio

Rope in your family, friends, and anyone else who fancies having their make-up done for free, so that you can take some beautiful photographs to add to your portfolio.

A good make-up portfolio is one that is varied. So, show off different make-up styles. Don’t simply do everyone’s make-up in the same sort of style.

You also need to make sure you get the lighting right, as this can make a massive difference when taking photographs of others. You can read these tips on using the right lighting for make-up if you need a helping hand.

Whenever someone considers hiring you, they will check out your portfolio, so it is really important.

Final words on working as a freelance makeup artist

If you are to work as a freelance makeup artist, it is important to have a contract in place to protect yourself first and foremost.

You should also prioritise improving your makeup skills, as there are always new trends, techniques, and products to master.


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