When it comes to finding the right makeup school, there are a lot of things to consider. For example, what should the school criteria include? How can you tell if a makeup academy is reputable or not? In this article, we’ll show you how to choose the best online makeup school for YOU and your career goals!

Let’s get started, shall we?

Is professional makeup the right career for you? Here are the top pros and cons of this job, so you can decide once and for all!

How To Choose The Right Makeup School For You: In-Person Vs. Online

When it comes to choosing the best makeup school, you have 2 options: in-person or online. So, let’s begin by breaking down the pros and cons of each type of makeup program…

In-Person Makeup School

Pros

  • You can build a strong rapport with your classmates and instructor(s).
  • You’re able to get immediate feedback on your work/progress.
  • It can be easier to find models to work on during your classes.

Cons

  • It can be expensive to travel to/from the school – especially these days, with the current price of gas.
  • Typically, in-person schooling is a lot more expensive.
  • The class schedule might not be flexible enough to work around your work/life schedule.
  • You may not be able to find a makeup program that’s close to home.
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Online Makeup School

Pros

  • Generally, online schooling a lot more affordable (e.g., lower tuition, payment plan options, etc.).
  • You get the freedom to study on your own schedule and at your preferred pace.
  • There are a lot of online makeup programs to choose from, from foundation courses to advanced/specialty classes.

Cons

  • The wrong kind of online makeup school will make it more difficult to get helpful feedback on your progress.
  • Your interactions with classmates and instructors may be more limited.
  • It can be easy to get distracted while studying at home if you aren’t self-disciplined.

So, which type of learning environment is the right fit for you?

On the one hand, you might feel like you’d benefit from the structure of an in-person course, as well as want the chance to build relationships with classmates and tutors. If so, then this is probably the route for you.

On the other hand, however, you may be looking for a more affordable option that allows you to study at your own pace. If this is the case, then an online makeup school would be the better choice for your goals.

For the purpose of this article, let’s assume that moving forward, you want to learn more about picking the best online makeup school…

How To Choose The Best Online Makeup School: Must-Have Criteria

When you’re looking for an online makeup school, there are certain criteria that the school itself should meet. Some critical green flags include the following:

✅ The Online Makeup School Is Properly Accredited

These days, there are a LOT of scammers out there who want nothing more than to steal your hard-earned money. For this reason, when looking at online makeup schools, be sure to check and see that the institution is properly accredited. This means that it’s been evaluated by an outside agency and determined to meet certain educational standards.

QC Makeup Academy, for example, holds an A+ ranking from the Better Business Bureau. On top of that, we’re a faculty of QC Career School – a trustworthy pioneer of distance learning since 1984!

Pretty happy businesswoman doing make up in home office

✅ The School Has a Legit Website

When you’re looking at an online makeup school, take a look at the company’s website. Does it look legitimate? Is it user-friendly? Are the school’s policies, procedures, and course information easy to find?

An online school’s website will tell you a LOT about that school as a whole. If it’s poorly designed and/or lacks need-to-know info, that’s a pretty big red flag!

QC Makeup Academy’s website, for example, is designed with the student in mind. For starters, it’s incredibly easy to navigate. Plus, it’s got all the information you need – right at your fingertips!

✅ The Makeup Tutors Are Qualified

The best online makeup school will have qualified instructors who are the real deal. Not only will they possess the experience and expertise needed to be teaching your course; they’ll also be properly certified.

The tutors and expert instructors at QC Makeup Academy are all exceptionally qualified! They have years of experience in the professional beauty industry, as well as countless designations and qualifications to their names.

Take our lead instructor, Nathan Johnson, as an example. Nathan helped handcraft QC’s Master Makeup Artistry Course, in addition to many other QC programs. With over 20 years of experience as a celebrity MUA and makeup coach, Nathan has worked with such A-listers like Paula Abdul, Lea Michele, Kyra Sedgwick, Kevin Bacon, Paul McCartney, and more!

✅ They’re On Social Media

When choosing the best online makeup school, the next thing you’ll want to do is see if they’re active on social media. These days, any business that isn’t on social media in some way is pretty sus. After all, social media is a great way for an online school to showcase their culture, the kind of awesome community they have, etc.

QC Makeup Academy is VERY active on social media! This is because we love connecting with our students/alumni, as well as sharing tips, tricks, blog posts, and useful resources. Plus, we’re always looking for an excuse to post pictures and videos of our happy students/grads and the beautiful makeup looks they’ve done!

Interested in checking out QC’s social media?

Connect with us here:

✅ The School’s Support Team Is Actually Reachable

How annoying is it when you try to get a hold of a company’s support team, only to be met with radio silence? If an online makeup school’s Support Staff aren’t easy to get a hold of, are prone to ghosting, and/or have a terrible attitude, proceed with major caution!

Here’s yet another awesome perk of becoming a student at QC Makeup Academy: our Support Team is quite literally the BEST! 💕 They’re available 7 days a week by phone, email, and live chat – depending on your personal preference. Plus, they’re always quick to respond to any inquiries or issues you might have.

It also helps that they’re super friendly and more than happy to help you out, no matter what the concern might be!

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How To Find an Online Makeup School: Course Criteria

Okay, so we’ve gone over some things to look for in an online makeup school. Now let’s talk about the actual criteria the program itself should meet. When trying to choose the best online makeup school, make sure the course offers the following:

✅ A Solid Makeup Curriculum

When you’re looking at online makeup courses, make sure to check out the curriculum of the course itself.

Does it cover everything you’re hoping to learn? Has the program been designed by experienced beauty experts? Does it cater to beginner makeup artists, experienced MUAs, or both?

QC Makeup Academy offers a wide, comprehensive list of makeup and beauty certification programs that cover all of the following areas of the industry:

  • Makeup Artistry (for personal makeup)
  • Master Makeup Artistry (for professional makeup on clients)
  • Skincare Consulting
  • Pro Makeup (meant to be taken after the MMA Course)
  • Global Beauty
  • Portfolio Development
  • Airbrush Makeup
  • Hair Styling Essentials
  • Special FX Makeup
  • Fashion Styling
  • Virtual Makeup Training

Want to learn more about these courses? Check out the full curricula for QC’s self-paced, online certification programs here!

✅ Affordable Tuition

Of course, you want to make sure you’re getting your money’s worth when you sign up for an online makeup course. But this does NOT mean you have to break the bank in the process!

The truth is, there are plenty of affordable options out there, in terms of online makeup schools.

Take QC Makeup Academy, for instance! Our online programs are some of the most affordable you’ll find! For starters, we offer a low monthly payment plan option, thereby allowing you to spread out the cost of your course over time!

What’s more – the moment you enroll in one QC course, every other course is then available to you at a whopping 50% off!

Click here to learn more about the cost (and payment options) of QC Makeup Academy’s courses!

✅ Hands-On Experience

MYTH: You won’t be able to get any hands-on experience through an online makeup school.

FACT: The best online makeup school will guarantee that you get plenty of hands-on training on actual models!

This makes total sense… After all, what’s the point of taking a makeup course – yes, even online ones – if it won’t prepare you for the real world?

QC Makeup Academy’s online programs offer students countless opportunities to put their skills to the test via practical, hands-on assignments. You’ll be challenged to find and work on models of different ages, genders, etc. Furthermore, you’ll be required to complete assignments on models with different skin tones, skin types, etc.

closeup young lady prepared by makeup artist

✅ Business Training

If your goal is to start your own makeup business, then it’s important to find a course that also offers business training as part of its curriculum. After all, there’s a lot more to being a successful MUA than just knowing how to apply makeup!

All of QC’s courses provide a full unit devoted entirely to business training. As a result, graduates walk away knowing exactly how to launch – and run – a successful company of their very own. From building a clientele to marketing your services, our certification programs cover it all!

PRO TIP: Join QC Makeup Academy alumnus and industry expert, Devyn Gregorio, as she breaks down why a business class is ESSENTIAL to your makeup training!

✅ A Legitimate Makeup Certification Upon Graduating

When graduating from an online makeup school, you should be proud of your accomplishment! And what better way to show off your new skills – and certification – than by displaying it for the whole world to see?

As we mentioned earlier, QC Makeup Academy is a well-respected and accredited institution. As such, when you graduate from any of our courses, you’ll receive either a certificate of completion or an internationally-recognized certification + designation!

The following QC courses will provide a globally-recognized certification:

The remainder of QC’s courses provide a globally-recognized certificate of completion!

Deciding On an Online Makeup Academy: Red Flags To Avoid

Now it’s time to move onto the red flags you’ll want to watch out for. After all, choosing the wrong school can be a very costly mistake – both in terms of your time and money.

When it comes shady online makeup schools, keep an eye out for the following warning signs…

🚩 The Online Makeup School Is Unaccredited

As we mentioned earlier, one of the many benefits of QC Makeup Academy is our accreditation. But there are many online makeup schools out there that are not accredited. While this doesn’t necessarily mean they’re a bad makeup school, it’s still something to be aware of.

Generally speaking, if an online school isn’t properly recognized, it could mean that:

  • They don’t adhere to certain quality standards
  • They’re not properly licensed
  • They might not have been around for very long
  • It’s not a legitimate online makeup school

Obviously, these are all totally valid concerns! As such, if you come across an online makeup school that’s unaccredited, make sure to do your due diligence before enrolling. Make sure they’re legit first.

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🚩 They Have a Bad Reputation

Another HUGE red flag is to watch out for is if the school has a bad reputation, both online or otherwise. For instance, do they have more negative reviews than positive ones? Are there countless complaints about them?

Of course, every makeup school – whether it be online or in-person – is going to have at least a few unhappy students. That’s just the way it is. But if the majority of what you see online is negative, then that’s a glaring red flag you shouldn’t ignore.

The best way to get an accurate idea of an online makeup school’s reputation is by reading reviews from multiple sources. This way, you can get the most accurate picture of what people are saying about them.

Curious about what people are saying about QC Makeup Academy? Take a look at our Facebook reviews!

🚩 You’re Promised “Quick and Easy” Results

In order to choose the best online makeup school, it’s important to avoid any place whose promises seem too good to be true. For instance, if a school claims that they can turn you (and your skill-set) into that of a professional MUA in less than a month, then that’s probably not realistic.

Now, we’re not saying that it’s impossible to become a certified makeup artist quickly. After all, some people pick things up faster than others and will be able to finish their makeup course in less time. But generally speaking, it’s going to take more than just a month to acquire all the skills needed for long-term success in the beauty industry.

So, if an online makeup school is making any grandiose promises, be at least a little wary. After all, we know that the LAST thing you want to do is waste your time and money on something that’s not actually going to work.

🚩 The Cost of The Makeup Course is Dirt Cheap

Now, this rule doesn’t necessary apply to all makeup courses. Some schools, for example, may offer short workshops or quick modules that you can purchase à la carte. In these cases, it makes sense that these may be offered at a very low price.

What we’re referring to are extensive, full-on certification courses offered at a ludicrously low cost.

Here’s a good rule-of-thumb to abide by: if a school’s tuition fees are suspiciously low, there’s a reason for that… And it’s not a good one! Good-quality makeup courses will typically cost a few hundred dollars, at the VERY least.

And most high-quality programs? Well, you’ll be looking at paying anywhere from approx. $500 to $1300. (Although, as we mentioned earlier, this is still relatively cheaper than in-person courses – and you’ll have more payment options at your disposal!)

Now, it obviously goes without saying that there are always exceptions to the rule. However, if an online makeup school is claiming that they can fully train you (from no experience to the level of a professional MUA) for less than $100, that’s a MAJOR red flag!

If the price seems too good to be true, that’s because it probably is. So, just keep that in mind.

🚩 Your Makeup Certification Costs Extra

Another red flag to watch out for is any online makeup school that tries to make you pay extra for your certification. This isn’t cool, no matter the circumstance!

The fee for your certification should be included within the cost of tuition. After all, you’ve earned it! If a school is trying to make you pay additional and/or hidden fees for it, you’re being scammed.

So, as we’ve suggested before (and will continue to suggest again), do your research before enrolling in any online makeup class. This way, you can make sure the certification provided is included in the cost of tuition before signing up with the school!

Young brunette girl holding graduate degree diploma smiling happy pointing with hand and finger to the side

🚩 You’re Only Given Textbook Learning

When choosing the best online makeup school, make sure they offer more than just textbook learning. While it’s important to have a foundation in theoretical makeup artistry knowledge, you also want to make sure you’re getting hands-on training, too.

Ideally, your online makeup course should offer both classroom-based learning AND practical assignments. Only this way will you then be able to graduate with the confidence needed to actually apply any style of makeup professionally – and not just understand the theory behind it.

How To Become a Makeup Artist

Now that you know how to choose the best online makeup school, it’s time to start your journey to becoming a certified MUA! So long as you remember to do your research, ask around for recommendations, and ensure that the program you choose is properly accredited, you’ll be well on your way!

We also STRONGLY encourage you to check out our Ultimate Step-By-Step Guide to Becoming a Makeup Artist! This informative article will break down all of the following information:

  • Whether or not being a makeup artist is truly a good career
  • Educational requirements
  • Cosmetology school vs. makeup school
  • The length of time it’ll take to become a certified makeup artist
  • Which field is best for makeup artists
  • How to become a certified MUA in 3 easy steps, even if you don’t have any experience
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Final Thoughts

We hope you enjoyed reading this article on how to choose the best online makeup school. With the right research, and so long as you know which criteria to look for, we guarantee you’ll find the course that best suits your needs!

Do YOU have any questions or comments about choosing the best online makeup school? Let us know in the comment section below! We love hearing from our readers!

Stay glam, beauties! 😘

Author Sloane Seguin

More posts by Sloane Seguin

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