Great, you're a makeup artist...now, what? Well, what exactly counts for 'being a makeup artist?' My very first boss told me it was when I had made someone cry, made some laugh, color corrected and worked on a very wide range of skin tones. It was also after I washed a million brushes. (we can use that number give or take. This was the advice a lot of people gave me.) In Cosmetology school, my advice from a lot of mentors was the same. You are truly a hair stylist when you've made someone laugh, someone cry and turned someone blue! Yep, I did, turn someone blue. But, that story is for a different time.
The industry has changed a lot but some essential tools to get you started will/have always stayed the same. Here is a list of things that I found great to help you get started when walking into the freelance world of artistry.
1. Get a contract....seen by a lawyer
This is the number one thing. I think everyone gets the idea of maintaining a contract. But, the best advice anyone has ever given me was: "make sure your contract can stand up in a court room". It is typically $50 (on average) to have a lawyer quickly look over and sign. Then, you're gold. They usually will let you know additional things that should be in it to protect both yourself and your client. I will eventually do a blog on the essentials for a contract.
2. Set yourself up with multiple outlets to advertise but ESPECIALLY a website.
Instagram and Youtube are great. They are awesome to use as search engines. But, nothing beats a website. I can not stress this enough. Every one of your search engine tools and platforms should link to your website. A lot of groups I am in talk about the difference between a 'working artist' and an 'instagram' artist. Looking busy is great but BEING busy is even better.
Pro Tip: Make Business cards. They are cheap and affordable for get started ones.
I truly enjoy moo.com cards.
3. Get yourself into a networking, Facebook communities and more.
The "groups" I talked about are often found on Facebook. I throughly enjoy In My Kit and Glossible. These are amazing resources to seek out advice from VERY experienced and talented artists. You know the saying, 'No such thing as a stupid question'. Your mama was wrong. There is. It is an unresearched one. Take your time to search through the group, take time to ask a detailed question and more. You will get the best responses and it will ultimately grow you. Take all the constrictive criticism.
Seek out networking events for groups you would well connect with, This could be women empowerment groups, beauty related groups or even a photography networking event. Thinking outside the box will make you more marketable and, ultimately, broaden your professional circle.
4. Build a great quality kit with Essentials ONLY.
I made the mistake in my early career of OVER packing. I had every color Makeup Forever and Mac liner you could find. I also had six different types of foundations. Here is to the better days of a foundation that I create the coverage, the liners I need and a ton of multi-use items.
Pro Tip: Find Multi use items.
IE Lip/Cheek Items, Use Shadows as liners and more.
Pro Tip: You don't need a premade Palette. You need a way to depot everything.
5. Get all your pro discount cards in order.
Sign up to Camera Ready Cosmetics, Salon Centric (if you're licensed) and your favorite brands that offer pro discounts. Pro discounts are every where. Some cost an annual fee. They vary in requirements but most will take business cards and a website to verify yourself. File all your passwords and information somewhere to come back to. This will save you on time and money in the long run.
Pro Tip: Keep an inventory sheet to keep track of your most used items, where to get the replacement and how much your replacements cost.
We will dive deeper and deeper into "You're a Makeup Artist. Now, What?" in more blog posts. I think we can all be amazing artists but having some business sense can set us apart. That same boss as above, told me, "I can teach anyone to be an artist. I can not teach everyone to have passion. You have the passion and skills needed to flourish". With my years of passion, I'm here to give some education on the business guidelines that took me a while to find.