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Graduate Feature

Student Feature: Caroline Edwards

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Tell us a little bit about yourself!

Hi everyone, my name is Caroline! I’m 46 years old, with 4 children and 6 grandchildren. Before makeup came into my life, I worked in a special needs school. I adored it, and only left because my own child became chronically ill.

I love spending time with my family, friends, and generally having a giggle. Truth be told, you’ll often find me hanging out in my makeup room during my spare time. I eat, sleep, and breathe makeup!

Why did you decide to become a professional makeup artist?

I found makeup during a very dark time in my life. Struggling to accept my child’s illness, and that fact that he could no longer be able to go to school, I became very isolated. One day, however, an advert popped up on my news feed about becoming a makeup artist.

I’ve always loved makeup, but I never considered it a potential career for myself until that moment. So, I decided I would take the class for myself. No one could have foreseen how this journey would ultimately save me and help me grow. It’s absolutely the reason why I’ve gotten to where I am now!

Despite still being a makeup artist student, you already have your own successful MUA business. Can you tell us a little about its history, and the kind of professional services you offer clients?

I started building my bridal business last year. I figured, why not just bite the bullet?

I began by putting my name out there, which led to a position within the most beautiful salon. My coworkers there knew of my aspirations to open up my own business. They really supported me and encouraged me to go for it!

I’ve taken part in a lot of bridal photoshoots, in order to network with other suppliers and gain some professional images for my website. In addition to doing makeup, my business also offers skincare advice and makeup lessons (group sessions and/or 1-on-1s). I’ve slowly started adding hair-related services, too.

I just love to share my knowledge and help others!

You’ve been super busy lately working as a makeup artist for a feature film. WOW, that’s truly amazing (congrats are in order!). How did you land this job? What’s the experience been like?

This opportunity came to me after I’d connected with another makeup artist. We clicked straight away, and she has become a very dear friend. She was working on a film at the time, and after chatting for a while, she offered me a place on her team.

It’s been the most incredible, wonderful experience! The cast and crew are absolutely amazing. We’ve all become a little family unit. What started out as 1 day of work experience has turned into an ongoing job for me! It’s now been 10 months since I joined this film crew. I feel very blessed.

You look to have done your fair share of regular makeup, SFX makeup, bridal makeup, and even editorial makeup (for ELEGANT magazine). Of all these different categories, do you have a favorite one?

That’s hard! I adore every aspect of makeup. I think my favorite style, though, is red carpet glam.

That being said, I adore editorial makeup and photoshoots. Nothing can ever take away that feeling of seeing your work published!

You’re enrolled in Nathan’s Master Makeup Artistry course, and are currently killing it with an A average! How are you finding the program so far? (E.g. The tutor interaction, videos, course texts, assignments, student support, etc.)

I don’t have enough words to say how wonderful QC Makeup Academy is. Nathan is extraordinary! He’s honest, but never cruel. You always know that everything he tells you is coming from the heart.

If you want to learn and improve as an artist, you need to be able to take constructive criticism. It’s not harsh, nor is it meant to upset you. It’s merely to help train your eye and keep pushing you.

My whole experience has been nothing but a pleasure. The videos are clear to understand, and in addition to looking beautiful, the text books are full of all the information you need! I found the assignments to be very detailed.

There are quite a lot of them, so you must work hard to be able to learn. But you WILL learn, and gain all the tools you need to do this job professionally!

It’s also worth noting that my fellow students are simply awesome. The student-run support group on Facebook has been life-changing. There’s a very real sense of family community within QC, whether it’s between the students, or extended from the staff. I love that!

What made you want to enroll in QC’s Portfolio Development Workshop? What specifically do you hope to learn and take away from it?

I thought it would come in handy to understand how to organize photoshoots and develop my business portfolio. After all, without a decent portfolio, how can I properly showcase my work?

Why did you enroll in online makeup courses instead of offline?

It would be impossible for me to attend in-person classes with all my personal commitments! So physical makeup school wasn’t an option. After that, I turned my focus to online schools.

I had initially done a few online courses elsewhere, but they really didn’t teach me much. After that, I researched some online makeup schools, and QC Makeup Academy jumped out at me. The deal was sealed from that point on!

Is there a particular technique you’re still working to improve?

I’m always working on my skills! But for me, blush and lips are things I want to take to the next level.

Name your Holy Grail product that ALL makeup artists should have (and why)!

I don’t have just 1 product. But I AM in love with the brand, Charlotte Tilbury. In my experience, her product line works beautifully for bridal makeup. They’re also just as awesome for editorial looks, too, since they show up so well on camera. I couldn’t be without her products!

Maximize your time at home by earning your professional makeup artist certification! Enroll today in QC’s leading online Master Makeup Artistry Course!

Katey Stevens sugar skull makeup look

Graduate Feature: Katey Stevens

By | Graduate Feature | No Comments

Tell us a little bit about yourself!

I’m a freelance makeup artist that mainly focuses on collaborating with local photographers and wedding venues. I provide my makeup services for a variety of photoshoot types, such as:

  • Editorial
  • Boudoir
  • Bridal
  • Headshots
  • Prom
  • Special events
  • And any other occasion wherein someone might want to be a little “extra” and done up!

I was born and raised in the beautiful Evergreen State of Washington. I found my passion for makeup as a young child, admiring my Mom getting ready in her bathroom mirror. Outside of makeup, I enjoy spending time with my husband, Cameron, and our two boys, Logan and Jameson.

I’m an avid hiker and enjoy exploring the Cascade Mountains. Also, I love spelunking, riding dirt bikes, quads, gardening, and enjoying good food with good people!

Why did you decide to become a professional makeup artist?

Back when I first met my husband, I found he was/is so ambitious and encouraging. He gave me the confidence boost I needed to believe that I could run my own business and follow my dreams. It’s largely due to his support that I decided to become a full-time MUA!

makeup for photoshoot model

How would you describe your makeup style? What is your favorite makeup style?

I would describe my makeup style as diverse. I view makeup as an art form. I have a variety of interests; from soft glam and bridal, to SFX makeup (involving liquid latex and prosthetics). My favorite makeup style, though, would have to be an evening glam look. Nothing beats a smoky eye or a bold lip!

Tell us a little about your makeup business, Alluring Makeup Artistry. What was the process like in starting your own business?

I visualized the start of my business as a checklist of tasks and goals. I knew I had to start the journey with a makeup academy that could provide me with the tools I needed to get started, and a flexible schedule. I was still working full-time back then, as well as raising two young boys. A flexible makeup school was a must!

I began gaining experience by doing makeup for weddings on the weekends throughout summer. I’d get referred through friends and family, which is how I started getting my name out there. Then I created a makeup-related Instagram page, Facebook Business page, and website. I worked hard to build clientele through social media, local networking groups, and referrals.

You specialize in on-location makeup services for your clients. Can you tell us a little about what that means? Do you feel that providing this service gives you any advantages over your competition?

Adaptability is everything in the makeup industry! That includes being able to function well while being on the move, with a strict timeline.

Whether I’m indoors or outdoors, I can show up at any location and adapt. Regardless of the venue, the weather, or any other circumstances, I’ll have my makeup train, my chair and folding table, my lighting and camera, and be prepared for anything!

It’s also really important to understand how to do a bunch of different makeup styles. That way, you can be flexible, and still suit the person and vision for a project.  My artistic diversity and willingness to adapt to my surroundings gives me a HUGE advantage over my competition.

You focus a large part of your business on collaborating with other local vendors and suppliers. Can you elaborate on this (in terms of the types of collaborations you do, and why you find it beneficial to your career)? Would you recommend this practice to other aspiring MUAs, and if so, why?

I focus on collaborating with local vendors because, as vendors, we’re all working toward a common goal: to have the best customer satisfaction by providing our strongest skill-sets.

Katey Stevens crazy eye makeup look

Photographers, wedding planners, venues, event coordinators, salons, bridal boutiques… All these people that we build relationships with will benefit from the experience. Likewise, our customer traffic will grow once we’re all referring clients to one another and supporting each other’s businesses. This is especially helpful in my case, because I live in such a rural area.

What is the proudest moment in your makeup career so far?

EVERY special moment I share with my clients, when they see themselves in a different way, is my proudest moment. Sometimes, I feel I can maybe help them see themselves in a way they’ve never seen themselves before. That’s incredibly rewarding.

Do you have a favorite look that you’ve done, either on yourself or a client?

Yes, it was a purple, sugar skull makeup look. I did for fun on a friend, and it’s definitely my favorite look so far! It was really cool, because I had all the time in the world to be creative and really take my time with it. It turned out exactly how I had imagined it would. I was very happy with my work.

Two hours later, we had some pretty awesome results. We then went outside to my backyard, took pictures with my camera, and had an impromptu photoshoot!

Why did you choose QC Makeup Academy over all the other makeup schools out there? How do you think QC Makeup Academy has prepared you for working in the field?

The reason I chose QC Makeup Academy, over all the other schools out there, was because I felt they were truly one-on-one. But yet, it was still in a format that allowed me to continue working full-time and managing my life at home with my two young boys.

The entire QC staff were all great, too! From the instructors, to the Student Support Specialist team, everyone was very professional, kind, and helpful. I feel that QC Makeup Academy definitely prepared me to work in this field. They gave me the knowledge and the sense of professionalism that allows me to continue to grow, even to this day!

What’s on the horizon for your Alluring Makeup Artistry in 2020?

In 2020, my goals for Alluring Makeup Artistry are to:

  1. Continue filling my appointment book with clients, and
  2. Continue networking with local vendors, so I can build relationships and grow my freelance business.

Long-term, I hope to be the go-to MUA for events around my area. Who knows, maybe I can even become an international business someday!

Finally, if you were trapped on a desert island, what makeup product would you bring and why?

Mascara! I feel eyelashes are the finishing touch to every look! 😉

Want to become a professional makeup artist, just like Katey? Enroll in QC’s internationally leading Master Makeup Artistry course today, and get certified in 2020!

pink theme - girl applying blush

QC Makeup Academy’s Top 10 Makeup Articles of the Last Decade

By | About the School, Education, From the Experts, Graduate Feature, Hair Styling, Makeup Trends, Style, Your Makeup Career | No Comments

Happy New Year, beauties! Though it may be the start of a brand new decade, we thought we’d do the ultimate 10 Year Challenge by paying our respects to the 10 most popular blog articles over the last decade.

So strap in, get comfy, and put your coziest socks on, because these blogs are well worth the read!

Fake eyelashes are fun and fabulous, but they can also be the literal worst to put on. Getting glue all over the place (such as around your eyes) can make for a real nightmare. Especially when you finally secure them on, only to realize they don’t even fit! Luckily, this article breaks down the basic steps to finding – and applying – the perfect falsies.

beautiful model wearing false eyelashes

It’s completely understandable to want to take the extra time to ensure your client is 100% happy with what you give them. You’re a professional, after all! That being said, you may actually be taking too much time in certain places that simply do not need it.

These extra minutes can instead be focused on the aspects of the appointment that matter most. QC executive tutor and professional MUA, Nathan Johnson, provides everything you need to know here, so you best know how to prioritize.

Believe it or not, not every cosmetic product pandered to you is actually required. In fact, many items – even those marketed as top-notch, quality products – either don’t deliver what they promise to, or can be easily replaced by something cheaper. This article is a must-read for anyone who’s looking to free up some unnecessary space in their professional makeup kit, while still keeping the essentials.

One of the greatest ways to get motivated is by seeing others just like you making a successful name for themselves in the makeup industry. This is why we love to showcase our QC students and graduates, and why they’re always such a big hit with our readers!

Special FX Makeup course graduate, Tyler Russell, is without a doubt a talented and valuable asset to the MUA world, so it’s no surprise that his feature made the Top 10! Keep reading to see his portfolio, learn about his personal makeup style, and hear how Tyler feels that QC Makeup Academy prepared him for working in the field!

special fx makeup - avatar-looking creature

Let’s get real here: you may like makeup, but it takes a lot more than that to become a successful, working MUA. Unfortunately, an interest in cosmetics isn’t enough these days to make you stand out from the crowd. There are other crucial factors that are key to being able to turn makeup from a hobby into a career. If you read these 5 reasons why you shouldn’t be a makeup artist and find yourself agreeing with them, it may be time to revisit the chalkboard!

When it comes to the makeup industry, there’s a false notion that in order to be the best, you must always have the best. So basically, if you’re on a tight budget, you’re out of luck. But wait, don’t put your palettes away just yet! The fact is, this isn’t true at all. Many cheaper brands have been known to work just as efficiently as their pricier counterparts.

We highly recommend this article for any aspiring (or even working) makeup artist who’re looking for a few ways to save some cash, without sacrificing quality.

woman shopping for cosmetic products

Millennials are known for their innovation and ability to create new, amazing things. Credit where credit’s due: they’ve paved the way in terms of both makeup and fashion. But admittedly, there have been a few blunders along the way, and not all trendsetting attempts have hit their mark.

Written by QC Fashion Styling tutor and personal stylist, Mallory Sills, his article explores 4 millennial fashion trends that are definitely more cringey than cute.

Another SFX makeup enthusiast, Kirsten Hart is a Master Makeup Artistry graduate at QC Makeup Academy. She’s also paved quite the way as a professional MUA, known for her striking, colorful looks, and her epic Instagram branding.

Check out this article if you’re looking for some serious inspiration for your own portfolio, and are curious to see how online makeup schooling has helped Kirsten along the way!

Think you’re a hairstyling guru? A fountain of follicle knowledge? A sensei of the strands? (Okay, we’ll stop.) Take this popular quiz and find out if you really know as much as you think! Maybe we’ll stump you – and if not, feel free to brag in the comments!

woman curling hair

As a newbie makeup artist breaking free into the professional world, it can be overwhelming to know where to start. But never fear! As The Beauty Buzz’s most popular blog article of the decade (WOW!), we’ll help arm you with 6 ironclad tips to not only get the ball rolling, but set you up for long-term success doing what you love most!

If the past 10 years were able to bring us this much amazing information, imagine what the next ten will hold! Is there anything you’re hoping to see and read about? If so, let us know in the comments!

Turn your MUA dreams into a reality by enrolling in QC’s leading Master Makeup Artistry course today!

smiling woman making heart symbol with fingers

Top 10 Most Popular Makeup Blog Posts of 2019

By | Education, From the Experts, Graduate Feature, Guest Articles, Student Ambassador, Your Makeup Career | No Comments

It’s hard to believe that today is the last day of not just 2019, but the decade!

Before we ring in and bring back the roaring 20s, we thought it’d be nice to look back at the top 10 makeup blogs of this past year that were your all-time favorites!

Part of our QC Graduate and Student Feature series, this article focuses on talented SFX graduate, Sophie Kraynak. Taking one look at a sampling of her portfolio shows us all that her success is truly well deserved (and why this article made the Top 10, even though it was only published earlier this month)!

With a unique background in the Marines, Sophie delves into how this experience shaped her makeup skills and personal style, as well as how QC Makeup Academy played a part in growing her professional career. Now a professional MUA, Sophie has earned quite the presence on TikTok, has worked with TTDEYE Contacts, and was even contacted by Rihanna’s cosmetic line, Fenty, to take part in an online challenge!

male makeup artist applying sfx makeup to client

We all know that you can have all the makeup knowledge in the world, but without a good understanding of skincare, makeup alone will never reach its full potential on your client’s face. In this informative article, Nathan breaks down 5 popular misconceptions that will actually make you break out (among other things). Have you fallen prey to any of these myths? Debunk them now for healthier skin in 2020!

Whether it’s shapeless clothing or culturally insensitive attire, there are certain fashion trends that millennials have been known to adorn that, frankly, need to stay in the past. QC Fashion Styling tutor and personal stylist, Mallory Sills, explores a handful of different fashion faux pas: what they are, why they do not work, and how we’ll be doing ourselves a favor by keeping them as far away from the new decade as possible.

Written by QC graduate, Student Ambassador, and professional makeup artist, Gabrielle Rivera, this article piqued our readers’ interest thanks to its focus on teaching which SFX products to outright avoid. We admit, some of these (like not using character kits) came as a surprise, even to us! If you want to make sure your Special Effects work is top-notch, you’ll be doing yourself a favor by ditching these items from your makeup kit, and opting for better alternatives!

makeup artist applying makeup to client

Here, QC executive makeup artist and tutor, Nathan Johnson, discusses 5 common makeup errors you might be making, without even knowing it. Many of these habits stem from a lack of proper makeup knowledge and education – something that online makeup schools can definitely teach you! Are YOU guilty of making any of these mistakes? 2020 can be the year you kick them to the curb!

Speaking of mistakes: is there a better way to enter the New Year, with a brand new set of resolutions, than by first making sure you’re not bringing any bad habits from 2019 with you? We think not! Nathan’s back, this time using his expertise in the field to let you in on 8 more crucial errors you may be making when it comes to makeup technique and etiquette – and how to go about breaking them so you can best succeed as a professional MUA!

Time is precious to any makeup artist, so it’s important to learn where you can afford to shave a few minutes, so that you always have ample room for what really matters. Nathan touches up on 5 key moments during a job where you may find yourself putting too much time into something that doesn’t actually need it.

From the initial greeting to the kind of conversation you make with your client, this article is chalked full of useful info that will help polish up your A-game and keep you on the ball during appointments!

Contrary to popular belief, there are plenty of cosmetic products that you actually don’t need in your repertoire. Whether it’s because they don’t truly work as advertised, or simply because there’s a more cost-effective substitute you can use instead, this article explores 5 makeup products that are surprisingly useless to you. Let us know if any of these come as a shock!!

makeup brushes and neutral eyeshadow palette

Another SFX makeup enthusiast, Tyler Russell is a graduate of QC’s Special FX Makeup specialty course, and now a professional MUA. Known for his painstaking attention to detail, Tyler goes into depth about what’s required in order to excel in the SFX field, as well as how QC helped fine-tune his skills. In addition to his epic goals for 2020, Tyler also reveals the one piece of advice he wishes he’d known before starting his makeup training! (Guess you’ll have to read it to find out what that is!)

Special Effects makeup has definitely shown itself to be a favorable topic for our readers, and the fact that this is our most popular blog of 2019 is proof! Part of our QC Student Feature series, this article focuses on Master Makeup Artistry student, Kirsten Hart, exploring both her background and makeup portfolio.

Displaying a wide array of different SFX (and even glam) looks, Kirsten goes into why she chose QC out of all the makeup schools to further her cosmetic education. She also shares some valuable tips on how to build up a solid Instagram presence!

It’s definitely going to be fun to see what articles will become most popular next year! Is there a specific topic you’d like to read about in 2020? Let us know in the comments!

Ready to make your dreams a reality in 2020? Enroll in QC’s leading Master Makeup Artistry course and start your MUA journey today!