How Much Does it Cost To Become a Makeup Artist?

A career in makeup can be a fulfilling and exciting venture. Whether you want to be a freelance makeup artist or open your own makeup business, there will be some startup costs like schooling, legal expenses, makeup equipment and more.


Studying Makeup Artistry

Enrolling in a professional makeup course will help you gain industry knowledge of the basics and principles. You will master different make-up techniques and develop your skills in new areas by getting to spend dozens of hours in-class practising hand-to-brush under the guidance of master makeup educators.

In addition to building your portfolio, during your course, you will get the chance to network with your fellow peers and teachers to build a network of other makeup artists in the industry

Before you look into your schooling, make sure to do your research. A tip is to find a place that aligns with your main objectives and professional goals. Consider what you want and if the school can aid you in achieving your goals.

Investing in Makeup Kits & Equipment

Your makeup kits are the most important investments to have when it comes to being a makeup artist. You need to do a lot of research and care. Every artist will be working with diverse clients so you will need to create a kit that can serve anyone. This includes having a variety of colour palettes, foundations, concealers, colour correctors and more. You will need to take into factor the different locations, weather, climate and people.

Make sure you invest in quality makeup brushes and products. You should not buy used brushes and beware of counterfeits. Face Agency offers a wide range of professional makeup products at our makeup store and at our sister company Simply Fierce.  We offer professional makeup products direct to Australian Makeup Artists

You will also need to fund specialised cleaning products (like makeup removal pads, brush cleaning supplies and cotton swabs). Your boxes, bags and containers are also a component of expenses for the kit themselves.

When you enrol in a professional makeup  or SFX  course at Face Agency, you will need to purchase a makeup kit which will include a full kit of the tools and professional products from industry-leading brands such as Ben Nye, Paris Berlin & Kryolan, you can view a full list of what’s included in the kit here

Something to consider investing in is portable lighting, this can important when you are applying a client’s makeup and the natural lighting doesn’t work in your favour. Look into a ring light or/and makeup lights (2 square panels and one eye light).


Public Liability Insurance & Registering Your Business

If you’re planning on becoming a freelance makeup artist or opening your own makeup business, that means you need to learn about the legal rules and their expenses. You should take into consideration insurances, permits, rentals, etc.

As a freelance makeup artist you will need to register an ABN with the Australian Business Registry, this is completely free to do. We will cover this more in-depth in our upcoming article about how to become a makeup artist

Whether you’re skilled or experienced, having business insurance protects you and your company from financial losses in case any accident happens (life is unexpected). Take into account the factors- who you work for, where you live and whether you feel secure in your career.

Having insurance means you don’t have to take money out of your pockets when bad situations happen. For example, what if one of your clients had an allergic reaction to one of your makeup products?

Insurances can range from $65 to $100 per month depending on who you’re insured with (for example, BizCover or Smart Business Insurance). You will need to do more research on what insurance you want to work with. For example, if you’re planning on working with BizCover and you select “Portable equipment insurance”, your tools can be protected in case they’re lost, damaged, or stolen.



You need ways to get your makeup business out there. So what are some ways you can market yourself?

A great free way to get started advertising your makeup services is through word of mouth.  This is where you do makeup for friends, family or relatives and if they’re happy with the look, ask them to spread the word. There are two ways to do this if you’re a beginner, giving them a discount or doing it for free. It’s better to give them a discount as you’ll be getting paid for your work and this should cover the cost of the products that you use.

Using Facebook and Instagram is a must for up-and-coming makeup artists to showcase their work


Brand identity is so important when it comes to starting your makeup business. Having a strong brand influence helps you bring awareness and differentiate yourself from your competitors. It’s how the public perceives your business.

There are a few ways you can do this such as having your logo, crafting a brand identity board or plan, your website design and your social media content. You do these yourself or better yet, invest in a freelancer to do these things for you at a one-time fee.

You can also purchase pre-made templates online (such as business cards, price lists, social media content, website themes, etc.) specialised for beauty businesses. Use sites like Etsy, Creative Market or Fiverr.

When first starting out, only pay what you can afford. In the future, once you have more money coming in from your business, you can invest more money into a professional re-brand.


After you have your brand up and running, it’s time to own your own self-hosted website. Having your own site is worth it in the long run and provides a great way for potential customers searching for makeup artists on Google.

Having your own website for your makeup startup is a great way to showcase your portfolio, bring in passive clients through Google search engines, bring brand awareness and collect interested viewers in an email list (another great way to have potential clients). It’s like a digital business card because you can add all your social media and contact info in one place.

Self-hosting your own website should cost around $200 – $400 AUD depending on who you are with and what bundle you choose (basic or premium). It is recommended to use WordPress as you’re able to customise the site however you like. But if you’re looking for something user-friendly and just wanted to make a portfolio, you can use Squarespace.

You will need to pay for your own domain name (which is separate from your hosting cost). It cost as little as $20 per month or less. So make sure you research your available business name.


Overall, how much does it actually cost as a makeup artist?

The answer is: it really depends.

You could invest as little as under $500 – $5,000. Or you can invest more than $8,000. That all depends on your finances and location.

If you’re doing makeup for clients by travelling to their place or inviting them into your own home, the overhead cost will be lower. But if you’re planning on opening your own makeup studio or boutique, then you will need to look into the cost of utilities, rents, leases and more (which will cost more).