You know the expression, “Disaster lurks around every corner”? We’re not trying to be a Negative Nancy, but the first step to averting disaster – or at least remedying it – is acknowledging that it’s possible! You’re probably used to making mistakes from your initial makeup artistry training, but the makeup mishaps don’t just magically stop once you’ve achieved your makeup certification…
Even if you can’t avoid absolute catastrophe, it may help to know what they are ahead of time. Read on for the 4 disasters every freelance makeup artist will experience!
Spending all your money on the big brand names
You’re a professional now, so you’ll want professional-grade products—that’s completely reasonable! But sometimes you’ll find yourself blowing $500 at a Sephora VIB sale and only walking away with 10 products, and half of them are for personal use! You were supposed to spend that money replenishing some of your supplies but you blew it all on the new holographic pigments and aren’t prepared for that big job you booked next week. Now what?
Luckily Sephora has a great return policy, but you may not be so lucky if you are, say, shopping the sales at IMATS. Create a budget and stick to it! An expensive makeup kit isn’t built in a day, and you shouldn’t be rushing to replace all your drugstore makeup with their high-end counterparts. Some drugstore brands actually work just as well and can give you a better bang for your buck!
While we’re on the subject of a professional makeup kit, make sure you insure it in case anything goes awry!
Managing your time
Speaking of budgeting, it’s not just your bank balance that you’ve got to keep your eye on! You have to make sure that you’re also budgeting your time correctly. Once your makeup career starts picking up, there will come a time when you’re suddenly swamped with appointments. You’ll find that your professional life might eat into your personal time, and all work and no play can lead to some disastrous consequences. While you might have not have a full-on breakdown, you will find yourself bawling your eyes out at one point or another. The worst thing is to have all this happen in front of a client! Even if you plan ahead, time has a way of getting the better of us.
Make sure you schedule breaks and actually stick to them! Resist the urge to check your phone during your 30 minute break—your clients will ultimately benefit from this, too! If you feel tired or stressed out, chances are you’re probably not performing at the top of your game. You want to make sure that your clients keep coming back. Don’t be afraid to say no if you can’t reasonably fit it into your schedule.
Remember, you’re your own boss!
Handling bad reviews
We might be teetering on the realm of overdramatic, but we think it’s hailed as a disaster if you start losing gigs and/or clients because a few bad eggs leave scathing public reviews. We’re not saying that bad reviews can only result from antagonistic clients—sometimes you might do or say something off-hand that has a deep impact. But the next step that will make or break your makeup business, especially if you get few reviews to show at the beginning of your career, is how you handle it!
If you’re a freelance makeup artist, you’re expected to handle all client complaints (as you are the CEO, HR officer, and wage-worker of your own business!). There will be times when a simple misunderstanding is the only thing that stands between you and a client, while other instances might not be resolvable. Make sure that you’re approaching each bad review with empathy, and always remedy the problem directly instead of rerouting them to other channels—show them that you care!
Your first contract
The biggest disaster is when you’re counting on a client to pay you on time and in full amount after a major gig—and they refuse to pay or they disappear into thin air! It sucks to think about it, but you don’t want to be taken advantage of by some opportunistic clients.
Your employment contracts detail the boundaries and criteria of your work with your clients and models. Having a contract entitles you to proper treatment under the law—it’s an official agreement that you and the other party need in order to uphold your mutual responsibilities. Yes, it sounds like boring desk work, but contracts can and will save you from utter disaster!
Make sure that your makeup artist contracts are comprehensive—this can come in handy when you’re worried about certain aspects of your business relationships. You may want to add on additional clauses for non-refundable deposits for no-shows, or have a travel and/or parking fee if you find yourself traveling outside your usual work area for jobs.
All in all, no one can avoid potential disasters in their career as a makeup artists. But there are ways to avoid and remedy these situations if you play your cards right. Live and learn, my friend!