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How do I Become a Fashion Makeup Artist?

By Sheri Cyprus
Updated Mar 02, 2024
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If you want to become a fashion makeup artist, you'll have to focus on trendy looks. Fashion is all about clothing, accessories and even makeup being “in” style. More than that though, you also have to be original; as fashion designers have one-of-a-kind creations to display, their models' makeup must coordinate with the designs in a unique way. Understanding how to apply makeup on people of different skin types and colors is also crucial. If you want to become a fashion makeup artist for models, applying flawless, camera perfect cosmetics that flatter each individual should be your goal.

Choosing the right cosmetology school is essential, as not all of them offer courses in runway and print fashion makeup applications. Print career opportunities for those who strive to become a fashion makeup artist include magazine feature stories as well as advertising pages. Runway cosmetics classes teach makeup artists high fashion techniques that the students should use to inspire their own innovative applications. Specific makeup techniques for photography must be mastered or cosmetic applications won't photograph well.

If a cosmetology school offers job placement in runway or print, this can help you to become a fashion makeup artist in the specialty area you've chosen. Another way that you may be able to branch out into becoming known for creative makeup that photographs well is by starting a website for your business that includes a picture gallery of your work. Friends or family members could serve as your models until you get paying clients. Once your website is complete with your contact form and text that sells your services to potential clients, you can promote it by writing online articles about high fashion makeup services on free Internet article directories. Being able to link the article to your website is the purpose of these efforts; you want to drive online traffic to your site as a way of getting targeted sales leads.

Your website and marketing efforts can help you get extra work in order to gain experience as you study to become a fashion makeup artist in runway or print. Your side jobs could include special events such as weddings. Look for weddings in which the bride wants a different, trendy look in her makeup. Some brides hire makeup artists for the entire wedding party, including the grooms. Male grooming and cosmetics for men are becoming increasingly popular; if this area interests you, you may be able to stand out if you can bring out new, stylish and sought-after cosmetic looks for males.

Practical Adult Insights is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

By backdraft — On May 23, 2012

Makeup for fashion models is very different then the makeup that gets applied to actresses and news anchors. The makeup on the models is usually aesthetically ambitious and very loud. It has to make a statement across a room and stick in the minds of spectators the brief time the model is on the run way.

Often the fashion designer will work with the makeup artist to achieve a certain look that compliments the clothes.

By chivebasil — On May 22, 2012

I went to cosmetology school in order to become a make up artist. It was a one year program and it was focused just on makeup. Other programs go into hair and other body care areas but mine was almost strictly makeup on the face.

I found a job with a local news station right out of school and I have been with them for 5 years doing all of the makeup for the on air talent. I love my job and the people I work with. Becoming a makeup artists can be a great career path for people with a creative eye.

By summing — On May 21, 2012

Putting together a portfolio is crucial for finding work as a makeup artist. It does not all have to be professional work but it should be professionally presented.

I got started by taking pictures of myself after I had done all my hair and makeup. I would also offer to do work for my friends for free as long as they agreed to pose for my portfolio. This was an easy way to practice and to build up proof of my skills. When I actually started getting paying jobs I could prove that I was worth working with.

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