Graduate Feature

professional makeup artist's guide to budgeting

A Professional Makeup Artist’s Guide to Budgeting

By | Graduate Feature, Student Features, Tutorials & Tips, Your Makeup Career | No Comments

QC Makeup Academy Student Ambassador, Whitney Conn, shares her secrets on how she budgets as a professional makeup artist! Whitney has a few years of makeup artistry experience under her belt and knows all about how to budget for all her makeup expenses!

Whether you are just starting out or have been deep in the makeup industry for years, budgeting for your makeup business expenses is a must. Budgeting allows you to plan and track where all of your money is going. It allows for growth possibilities as your needs change. Budgeting will not only save you money, but time as well. Find out below how I plan my budget out for all of my makeup expenses.

Makeup Kit

My biggest investment is by far my makeup kit. Stocking it with good quality products for my clients is very important to me. I plan every year to use my tax return to fund my kit for the upfront cost. I tend to spend $400 to $500 when first stocking my kit. Then use the rest of the amount to replenish any empty products or to buy new products as needed for applications. As my skills grow, so will my need to stock my makeup kit with different or new products.


We never stop learning as makeup artists and it’s our job to constantly keep ourselves educated. The makeup industry is a rapidly changing field. To stay up with all of this, I chose to continue my makeup education. While I paid for my first course up front, I continued by adding on other courses as promotions came up or when I paid off a previous course. I try to keep my yearly budget for schooling around $1500; which could include more than one course within a years’ time.


Social media has taken the marketing world by storm. Paid ads are a great way to gain more reach.  I budget somewhere are $35 to $50 a month to post ads or to boost my page. This allows for a further reach to more potential clients or views on my social media page.

Marketing products, such as business cards, I buy depending on how fast I give them out. The cards and the logo conversion cost around $60 for a pack of 500 cards. I budget $100 to $150 per year on marketing materials as I see needed for events or busy times of the year.


Depending on where you live or if you are willing to travel there are marketing and makeup events all over. This is a wonderful place to meet fellow makeup artist and to put yourself out there. Many makeup events have classes to further your education or to refresh skills you already have. It is a good way to see things from a different perspective and learn from those who have been in the industry for many years. I budget between $500 to $800 a year for tickets and travel expenses for these trips. The trip may end up becoming a vacation while I am there for that event, which is a win-win for me.

As you grow in your skills and as your business demand grows, so should your budget. This may mean investing in higher quality products or that the courses you are taking requires more supplies. Whatever the reason may be it will be an ever-changing thing.

How do you budget your salary? Let us know some tips in the comments.

How did Whitney balance her full-time job with taking makeup classes online? Read this article to find out!

I Graduated From QC Makeup Academy – Now What?

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QC Student Ambassador, Stephanie Wyatt, is now a graduate in QC Makeup Academy’s Master Makeup Artistry program!

If you’ve been following her makeup journey, then you may be curious as to what she has planned for her future! In this video, Stephanie talks about her progress in her Special FX Makeup Course and Portfolio Development Course, as well as her career aspirations!

Let’s Recap

My Online Makeup Courses

I graduated from the Master Makeup Artistry Course, and am now currently enrolled in both the Portfolio Development Course and the Special FX Makeup Course. The Portfolio Development course is a bit more technical, so it doesn’t come with any workbooks. I am waiting until I finish my Special FX Makeup Course before starting on this one!

Since I am working full time, it took me around a year to complete my Master Makeup Artistry Course. I have until February 2019 to finish my other two courses, so now that my work commitments has slowed down a bit, I will be focusing my attention to my Special FX Course!

I have already completed the written assignments for Unit A, and am just missing the three practical assignments. Finding the models and time to complete the assignments can be tough, but since I have free time this weekend, I will be grabbing my family members to practice on! The Special FX Course has four units, so the course should not take too long to complete. But it is really good that I am able to get three full years to complete my courses. The courses are designed to be taken part-time, so they are perfect if you are a full-time mom, have full-time work, or are studying full-time. I do really enjoy that about QC.

Graduating as a MIMP

It honestly felt so surreal to receive my MIMP certificate, which says my name on it and shows that I am a certified makeup artist. I graduated in February 2017, so it’s been a year already! I’m excited to continue on with my Special FX course, so that I’ll be prepared for Halloween this year with all the gore-y makeup!

Currently, I’m actually not advertising myself as a makeup artist. However, I do film makeup tutorials on both my channel and occasionally on QC’s YouTube channel. I have also done some makeup applications on clients who found me through word of mouth. But at the moment, I really want to wait until I complete my Special FX Course before advertising myself.

I would eventually love to enroll in QC Makeup Academy’s Airbrush Makeup Workshop as well! I also want to gain experience in eyelash extensions, tinting, and perming, as well as eyebrow tinting and waxing. I love eyebrows, so I would like to learn those things on the side.

My Career Goal

My biggest career goal is to become qualified in special fx makeup and prosthetics, and to be able to do that in TV and film. That is my dream. I watch a lot of films, and absolutely love the makeup and prosthetics used. I find it very fascinating, and it’s incredible to see what people can create with makeup. I especially love the Walking Dead, and am impressed with all the makeup looks in the show. I would love to be able to create that someday, and be able to work on a TV or film set. I don’t just want to be on the credits, but I want to be part of the film and be a part of the whole experience. I want to be able to see my artwork on the big screen, and be able to say “that was me”.

I am really grateful that I came across QC Makeup Academy, because it has opened so many doors for me as both a makeup artist and as a YouTuber. As a certified makeup artist, I’ve had the opportunity to work with amazing makeup brands such as Maybelline, Makeup Revolution, Urban Decay, and NYX. And that is just a dream come true.

Honestly, I was a bit iffy about doing an online course at first, but it’s one of the best thing that I have done. It has opened so many doors and I love everyone at QC as well. The tutors are fantastic, and the people I work with behind the scenes to create these videos for you fantastic as well.

If you’re thinking about enrolling, you should definitely reach out to talk to someone from QC, or myself. I will be happy to answer any questions or queries you may have.

After enrolling with QC Makeup Academy, I feel so much better about myself. Sometimes I do still have bad blending days, bad brows days, or bad eyeliner days, but at the end of the day I am a certified makeup artist. To be able to have a certificate that proves that, means a lot to me. I can now say: “It’s official! I’m a makeup artist!”

Inspired by Stephanie’s journey so far? Learn more about QC’s online training classes!