How to Start a Successful Business as a Freelance Makeup Artist


If you love the beauty industry, have a flair for creativity and are passionate about makeup, becoming a freelance makeup artist might be a great career option for you. Just like starting up any kind of business, there are a few things to consider to make sure it’s the best option for you, and to increase your chances of success. Becoming a makeup artist is a amazing option for those who want to have a creative job where no day is the same, as there will likely be a wide range of projects week in and week out.

If you’re thinking about starting your own business and becoming a freelance makeup artist, follow some of these steps to be on your way to a thriving business and creative freedom!

Get networking

Because you’re working on a freelance basis, it’s more important than ever to have a large and well-connected network. Whether it’s chatting to people at live events in your area or connecting with people online on platforms such as LinkedIn, you need to start growing your contacts to ensure success. A great way to do this is to get involved at any local events where make-up artistry would be required, such as local wedding expos. Even if you don’t set up your own stall, just being at the event and getting to know some other local businesses will help you to grow your network so that people can refer you to their clients if someone is looking for a makeup artist.

Have the right tools

It would be very unprofessional for you to offer your services to a client, and then discover you don’t have the right (or enough) tools. One of your biggest and most important investments for your business will be your tools. Without them, you literally won’t have a business. Make sure you purchase the best tools and equipment you can afford, to make sure you have the best start with helping and assisting your clients. From make-up such as eyeshadows, concealers, foundations and mascaras, right through to professional brush sets, eyelash curlers and glues, you need to make sure you have the best gear possible, to avoid any difficult situations with clients down the track.

Get social

Like any new business, it’s always important to work on your SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) and social media networks. Social media is a great way to broaden your network by liking and interacting with other local businesses. By building a basic website and creating social media profiles, you can start to get the word out about your business. However, it’s not a case of creating the accounts and leaving them. Providing updates, uploading images of your work and interacting with people on your accounts is a great way to ensure people know you’re active, running a business and ready for clients, instead of makeup just being a hobby.

Set your prices

There will be plenty of different websites offering a wide variety of answers to the question “What should I charge?” There are a few different ways of approaching this question. One way is to look at your competitors and see what they are charging. This will give you an idea of what people are also willing to pay and how you can stay competitive in the local market. You also need to take into consideration what you’re happy to be earning. If you look at your monthly bills and can’t earn anything under $2,000 a month, you will want to ensure that your business can provide this for you. Alternatively, you can run your business part-time whilst it is growing, and continue with a ‘day job’ until you can make ends meet with your business alone.

Stay organised

As you start to get clients and potential leads, you need to stay very organised. Over time you will develop your own processes to ensure you’re always organised and on top of everything. You may feel a diary or planner that you write in each day with to-do’s and tasks is the best way to keep yourself organised. You may need a wall planner or alarms set on your phone to get jobs completed. Whatever it is, make sure you implement it and ensure you stay on top of your paperwork and client list.

Have a portfolio

Especially when starting out, some people will want to see a portfolio to ensure you can in fact apply make-up and you know what you’re doing. If you have never had clients before, create a portfolio using images of friends and family. Friends are great for being volunteers, especially if it means they get to be pampered with a free makeup session. Ensure you take plenty of ‘before and after’ pictures and keep them in a portfolio. It’s always handy to have a hard copy, as well as an online copy of your portfolio, so that you can show potential clients if you happen to set up a face-to-face meeting.

Stay confident

It can be daunting in the real world, as well as online, where there are literally thousands of other people wanting to become freelance makeup artists just like you. But, it’s not impossible. The best thing to do is stay positive, confident and assertive. You will have to play the role of salesman at times and persuade a client to choose you if they’re going to be choosing someone else. After all, this is your job and how you will make ends meet. It’s always important to stand up for yourself, your skills and your business and make the most out of your new business.

Get creative as a freelance makeup artist

It doesn’t have to be hard to start your own business as a freelance makeup artist. You will need to have a plan, stick with your strategy and ensure you do a great job. Once you start to get a few clients, you’ll be able to get recommended by past clients for anyone else looking for your services. In time, you will have yourself a successful freelance makeup artistry business.


To find out more about how to become a qualified beauty therapy and makeup artist, visit the ICI website today.

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