How to Become a Makeup Artist

Practice your craft

If you are considering becoming a makeup artist, it is almost certain that you love spending time applying makeup. Practising and trying out different techniques to bring different styles of makeup looks can be a great way to hone your craft as an upcoming makeup artist. Trying out application techniques on your friends and family is a great way to transfer these skills to applying makeup on another person and develop your professional skills. During your time studying makeup at Face Agency, our lecturers will help you to further refine and develop the skills that you have already learned. Face Agency makeup courses are designed to teach both beginners and intermediate makeup artists


Career Outcomes

There are a limitless number of pathways that a career in makeup can take you along which we cover in-depth in our career outcomes article. The two main career options we will cover in this article extend along many different pathways are freelance makeup or a special effects makeup


As a freelance makeup artist, you are able to work your own flexible hours and provide styles of makeup that you enjoy. Quite commonly, freelance makeup artists will offer a wide range of event makeup services, applying makeup on clients for events such as birthdays or formal events. Right up to high-end bridal makeup which is a much more high-stress environment but also more profitable to you as a makeup artist.


Special effects makeup training can take you all over the world working on different theatre shows, television and film sets as just a few examples. Even in Adelaide, there are a lot of small projects that are in need of SFX makeup artists to bring the director’s vision to life, from creating grazes and bruises all the way to turning your talent into a brain-eating zombie or an alien from outer space.



Register for Professional Training

The best way to give your future career as a makeup artist a kickstart is to enrol in a professional makeup course. At  Face Agency, we offer a range of courses that will equip you with all of the specialist skills and knowledge needed to enter the hair and makeup industry with confidence and expertise. All of our courses are held exclusively in-person, meaning that you will get to spend hours in class at our studio learning techniques and getting to practice them under the guidance of lecturers.


Not only will you learn expert skills and techniques for applying different styles of makeup, but our lecturers and staff at Face Agency will also teach you the professional skills you need to start your own business or career in makeup.


Our Professional Makeup Artistry course is the perfect entry point into the makeup industry, you will study a range of topics at our makeup school including;

  • Colour Theory
  • Product Knowledge
  • Foundation Application
  • Eye Makeup Application
  • Lipstick Application
  • Contouring & Highlighting
  • Natural & Dramatic Makeup Looks
  • And Lots More Listed On Our course page


The Creative and SFX Makeup Course can open new doors into the film, magazine, theatre and TV industry. If you are already a makeup artist or would like to start a new career in the creative/special effects makeup industry, this course can offer you the techniques, confidence and understanding to allow you to participate in the field as a creative, theatre and SFX makeup artist, throughout your course, you will learn some of the following topics;


  • Makeup Through The Ages
  • Male Makeup
  • Creative & Character Makeup design and application
  • Bald cap making and application
  • Bruising, Cuts & Grazes Burns, Scars, Blisters
  • Diseases, Death
  • Makeup Foam Latex Character Applications
  • And More Listed On Our SFX Course Page


Build out your Makeup Kit

Buying affordable makeup is a great way to get started and develop basic techniques, as you gain confidence and start providing your services professionally you will want to consider investing in a collection of professional makeup products. Although it is cheaper to purchase makeup from drugstore brands that offer great value, we would recommend investing in makeup artist-grade products that will have more vibrant colours and last for hours longer on your client’s skin.



Create your Portfolio

When you are creating your portfolio, try to include as many photos as possible of different styles of makeup (Event, Formal, Bridal & SFX)  on different models to demonstrate your skills.


This portfolio is a professional showcase to demonstrate your abilities of  applying various styles to different face shapes and ethnicities, your potential clients will also be able to use your portfolio to point out the style of makeup that they would like applied.


Freelance vs Employment

Running your own business and being the boss is often considered the dream as you have extremely flexible hours, but it isn’t for everyone. As a makeup artist, you have the option of entering into the industry as a freelance makeup artist but you also have the option of applying for jobs in the industry


As an employed makeup artist you will either end up working as a sales consultant or a beautician, some of these positions may require the relevant certification. These careers provide a great option that may not want to run their own business and would prefer the security of part time or full-time employment


Network with other Makeup Artists

Building a network of fellow makeup artists around you within South Australia and across the country can be a great to build lifelong friends that you can bounce ideas. There will be times throughout your career as a makeup artist where you might not be able to take a booking from a client, you can easily refer the potential client to someone in the industry that you know and trust. They will likely also refer work back to you


Optional; Register an ABN & Business Insurance

As you continue to pick up freelance work as a makeup artist, providing your professional makeup skills to friends, family and new clientele, you will need need to register an Australian Business Number (ABN) with the ATO. The ATO defines the threshold for when you will need to register for an ABN when you no longer intend to provide your services as a hobby but when you intend to run a business and turn a profit, the best way that we can simply is that if you are looking to get paid for freelance makeup services consistently, you will need to register for an ABN which is easy and free to register on the ATO’s website


Promoting your Business

We have already discussed the importance of networking with fellow makeup artists as a way to promote your business. There are several ways that you can bring in work for your make

One great way to promote your new business providing makeup services is through Facebook  & Instagram. As a makeup artist, social media platforms will act as a portfolio to showcase your skills in applying makeup in different styles on different people. Keeping your social media platforms up to date on a regular basis shows to potential clients that you are committed to your craft as a makeup artist


You might want to also provide free or heavily discounted makeup services to your friends and family as a way to practice and build up your portfolio, providing a discounted service means that you will still be able to cover the cost of your products