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Running a Makeup Business: Expectation vs. Reality

By Career Advice, Your Makeup Career No Comments

There’s no question that owning your own business is a dream for many professional makeup artists. But what is the reality of owning and running a makeup business? Is it all glitz and glamor – or are there some hidden truths that you need to know before taking the plunge? Today, we’ll explore the expectations vs. realities you may not have considered.

So, keep reading to learn everything about the reality of having your own makeup business!

What It’s Like To Run Your Own Makeup Artistry Business: Expectation vs. Reality

Alright, let’s dive right in! Here are 10 expectations vs. realities of running a makeup business that you need to know…

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Expectation #1: You’ll Make Bank Right Off The Bat

Many people expect that they’ll make a ton of money right away when they start their own makeup business. As in, they’ll be raking in cash hand-over-fist and living the high life within a few short months.

Where does this myth come from?

Probably from all of the social media “gurus” out there who make it look like they’re swimming in dough. Similarly, celebrity MUAs who work with A-listers probably charge – and earn – a pretty penny. In turn, this can mislead the everyday makeup artist into thinking that they, too, will be making a killing right out of the gate.

HOWEVER, that’s not to say that you can’t eventually make a wicked income! Learn more about the average yearly salary for a makeup artist to get a better idea of the kind of figures YOU can earn!

Reality #1: It Might Take A While To Build Up Your Makeup Business (and In Turn, Your Profits)

In the real world, it will likely take time to build up a clientele and establish yourself as a reputable makeup artist. This means that in the beginning, you might not be bringing in as much money as you’d like.

And that’s okay! Remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day.

The same goes for building up a successful makeup business. It takes time, patience, and a whole lot of hard work. So, if you’re not making bank right away, don’t sweat it. Just keep hustling and eventually, the money will start rolling in.

Expectation #2: Starting a Makeup Business Can Be Done For Dirt Cheap

If you want to start your own makeup business, you might think that all you need is a few decent brushes, some good quality products, and voila – you’re in business! Understandably, this misconception is especially appealing to those who are just starting out and might not have a lot of disposable income.

Reality #2: Starting ANY Business Requires an Investment

While you might be able to get away with spending very little money when you first start out, it’s important to understand that starting ANY business requires some level of investment.

For example, in addition to brushes and products, you’ll also need things like:

  • A registered business name
  • A website
  • Business cards
  • Business insurance
  • Marketing materials, etc.

Plus, if you’re planning on working from a brick-and-mortar location, you’ll need to factor in the cost of rent, utilities, etc.

Furthermore, you’ll want to plan ahead to make sure your finances are covered for the first year of operation. This is especially important because it can take time to build up a clientele when starting any business… And that means your income might be a bit erratic in the beginning. Therefore, during the first year of business, there may be times where you’ll need to dip into your own pockets in order to stay afloat.

To give you a tangible number that you can work with, Small Biz Trends states that in the United States, the average startup + first-year costs for small businesses tends to range between $30,000 and $40,000 USD. Of course, it’s 100% possible to spend less (or more) than this – it all depends on the specific business being started and where it’s located.

What we’re basically saying is, while you might be able to get by with spending very little in the beginning, understand that there will be some costs associated with starting your own makeup business!

Expectation #3: You Can Work Anywhere, Anytime

As a makeup artist, you might think that you can work whenever, wherever, since you get to determine your schedule. After all, you’re your own boss, right? So, if you feel like working at 3 am on a Tuesday, who’s going to stop you?

Reality #3: Running a Makeup Business Means Making Certain Sacrifices

While it’s true that being your own boss has its perks, it’s important to understand that running a business also requires making certain sacrifices.

For example, as much as you might want to, you can’t always work whenever, wherever. Yes, having the ability to create your own schedule is amazing… But ultimately, you’ll need to be available when your clients are available. And that might mean working during weekends, evenings, and even holidays!

Furthermore, you’ll need to be willing to travel to wherever your clients are. So, if you’re not up for putting in the extra miles (literally), then being a makeup artist might not be the right career for you.

Young woman sitting at dressing table and looking in the mirror while makeup artist applying concealer with cosmetic brush. Female stylist doing professional makeup for client in beauty salon. Makeup article.

Expectation #4: You Can Quit Your Day Job Immediately

This is a big one. A lot of people think that once they decide to start their own makeup business, they can immediately quit their day job and pursue their passion full-time.

Reality #4: You Should Probably Keep Your Day Job – At Least for a Little While

Look, we totally get it. Choosing to pursue your passion and start your very own business is a huge accomplishment – and it’s super exciting! So, it’s understandable that you might get caught up in all of the hype and want to quit your day job immediately in order to pursue your new career.

But here’s the thing: as much as we’d all love to be able to do that, it’s just not realistic for most people. In fact, unless you have a ton of savings that you can fall back on, quitting your day job without any sort of backup plan is actually a pretty big gamble. This is because, in reality, the average small business takes approximately 2-3 years to become profitable.

So, while we know it might be tempting, our best advice would be to keep your day job (at least in the beginning) and work on building up your makeup business on the side. This way, you’ll have a steady income to fall back on in case things don’t go as planned.

Expectation #5: Running a Makeup Business is All Fun and Games

Another common misconception about running a makeup business is that it’s all fun and games.

After all, what could be better than getting paid to do something that you love? Not to mention, the world of makeup artistry is not like, say, the world of finance. Rather, it’s creative, it’s fun, and it’s pretty darn glamorous.

So, understandably, this might lead you to believe that running a makeup business is all rainbows and butterflies…

Reality #5: Running a Makeup Business is a Lot of Hard Work

Make no mistake about it – running a successful makeup business IS creative, fun, and glamorous. But at the same time, it also takes a lot of hard work.

Yes, you’ll get to play with makeup all day long and make people look and feel their best… But you’ll also have to deal with the not-so-fun parts of running a business, like advertising, marketing, accounting, and (if you have employees) HR.

So, if you’re thinking about starting your own makeup business, just know that it’s not all fun and games. Running a successful business requires dedication, discipline, and a whole lot of hard work. But if you’re up for the challenge, then we say go for it!

Expectation #6: You Can Operate a Successful Business WITHOUT Proper Makeup Training

Interesting fact that you may not have known: in many places around the world, makeup artistry (unlike cosmetology and esthetics) is NOT actually a regulated field. Meaning, there are no formal education or training requirements in order to become a makeup artist.

So, obviously this means that you have the green light to launch a career – and makeup business – without first getting some professional training under your belt… Right?

WRONG.

Reality #6: Professional Training is a MUST If You Want Your Makeup Business to Succeed

Just because there are no formal education or training requirements in place for makeup artists, doesn’t mean that you can operate a successful business without proper makeup training. In fact, we would argue that the opposite is true.

If you want people to take your business seriously (and trust us, they will), then it’s important that you have some sort of professional makeup training. This could be anything from a certification program (such as the self-paced, online certification courses offered at QC Makeup Academy) to a full-blown degree from a cosmetology school.

Think of it this way: if YOU were the client, and you had to choose between an MUA without any formal training and an MUA with a professional certification or degree, who would you choose? We’re guessing the answer is pretty obvious.

So, if you’re serious about starting your own makeup business, then our best advice would be to get some proper training first. Trust us, it’ll be worth it in the long run!

Check out the full list of online makeup certification courses currently offered at QC Makeup Academy!

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Expectation #7: Running a Makeup Business is Expensive

This is another common misconception about running a makeup business – that it’s expensive. While we can’t pinpoint for sure where this myth stemmed from, our best guess is due to the fact that, in order to run a successful business, you need to make sure you have the proper tools and equipment.

And let’s face it, quality makeup products aren’t exactly cheap!

Reality #7: You Can Easily Operate Your Makeup Business On a Budget

While it’s true that you running a makeup business requires having the proper tools and equipment, this doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s expensive. In fact, depending on how you choose to operate your business, it can actually be quite inexpensive.

For example, if you decide to work freelance and visit your clients at their homes or chosen location, then you won’t need to worry about the costs associated with renting out a studio space.

Or, if you choose to specialize in a certain area of makeup (like weddings or special effects), then you can invest in the specific tools and products required for that area, rather than buying a bunch of expensive, general-use products.

So, as you can see, there are a number of ways to operate your makeup business on a budget. It’s all about being strategic with your finances and only investing in what you need.

Tips For Creating a Realistic Budget for Your Business

Now that we’ve busted this common myth about starting a makeup business, it’s time to give you some practical tips for creating a realistic budget for your own business. Here are a few of our best suggestions:

  • First and foremost, it’s important that you have a clear understanding of your financial situation. This means knowing how much money you have to work with and what your regular expenses are. Once you have a good handle on this, you can start to think about how much you can realistically afford to spend on your business.
  • Next, make a list of all the essential items you need for your business. This could include things like makeup products, brushes, a website, business cards, etc. Once you have your list, start to research the prices of these items so that you can get a better idea of what they will cost.
  • Finally, remember that your business budget is not set in stone. As your business grows and changes, so too will your budget. So, don’t be afraid to revisit it on a regular basis to make sure that it’s still accurate and realistic.

PRO TIP: Discover how you can better budget yourself as a makeup artist with the help of these 4 industry secrets!

Expectation #8: You’ll Need To Undercharge Your Makeup Services At First

This is another myth that we hear all the time from aspiring MUAs: that they’ll need to undercharge their services at first in order to get their business off the ground. Now, we can absolutely understand why this logic appears to make sense. After all, if you want to attract customers, then you need to offer them a good deal, right?

Furthermore, especially if no one knows who you are yet, you might think that it’s going to be hard to charge top dollar for your services.

Reality #8: You Should NEVER Undercharge Your Makeup Services

As a general rule, you should never undercharge your services in order to attract customers. In fact, if you do this, you could actually end up doing more harm than good.

Why? Well, first of all, it sends the wrong message to your potential clients. If you charge too little for your services, they might think that your work is also low quality. After all, why would someone pay top dollar for something that’s not worth it?

Secondly, undercharging for your services can also make it difficult to run a profitable business. After all, if you’re not making enough money to cover your costs, then how are you supposed to stay in business?

But thirdly, and arguably most importantly, undercharging your makeup services is doing YOU a major disservice! As a professional makeup artist, you have invested time, money, and energy into perfecting your craft (especially if you’ve gotten professionally trained and certified). So, why sell yourself short by not charging what you’re truly worth?

So, What’s The Solution?

The key is to find a happy medium between charging too little and too much for your services. Do some research on what other makeup artists in your area are charging and use that information to help you determine a fair price for your own services. And, of course, don’t forget to factor in your own unique experience and skills when setting your prices.

Need help figuring out what you should be charging clients for your makeup services? Here are 4 types of makeup artistry services and what you should be charging for them!

Expectation #9: You Can (and Should) Be Doing Everything Yourself

Running your own business can be a lot of work. But as a result, it’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that you have to do everything yourself in order to be successful. After all, it’s your makeup business. So, shouldn’t you be the one in charge of everything?

Reality #9: This Will Probably Lead To Burnout

One of the biggest mistakes that new makeup artists make is trying to do everything themselves. And while it’s admirable to want to be in control of every aspect of your business, the truth is that this is simply not realistic (or sustainable) in the long run.

Think about it this way: as a makeup artist, your time is better spent doing what you’re good at (i.e. doing makeup). So, why waste your time on tasks that someone else could easily do for you (like social media, marketing, bookkeeping, etc.)?

The key is to learn how to delegate and outsource the tasks that you’re not good at or that you don’t have time for. This way, you can focus your energy on growing your business and doing what you love!

But What If You Don’t Have The Budget For This?

If you’re just starting out, then it’s understandable if you don’t have the budget to hire someone to help you with your business.

In this case, the key is to be strategic about the tasks that you delegate. Start with the tasks that are taking up the most time or that are causing you the most stress. Then, once you have more money coming in, you can gradually start outsourcing more and more tasks.

Expectation #10: Getting Your Startup Running Will Take Up Most Of Your Time

Depending on how you view this particular myth, this may actually be a reason why you’re hesitant to start your own makeup business. After all, if it’s going to take over and dominate your entire life, then is this endeavor really worth it?

This can be an especially damaging misconception if you happen to have a full-time job, are a student, and/or are a busy parent.

Reality #10: This Depends On Your Definition Of “Most Of Your Time”

Yes, the truth is that starting your own makeup business will probably take up more of your time than you originally anticipated. But this doesn’t mean that it has to take over your whole life!

As we mentioned earlier, one of the best things about being your own boss is that you get to set your own hours. So, if you only have a limited amount of time to work on your business, then you can simply schedule your work around the other important things in your life.

Of course, this doesn’t mean that you won’t have to make some sacrifices in the beginning. But if you’re strategic about how you use your time, then you should be able to get your business up and running without completely sacrificing your personal life.

After all, keeping a healthy work-life balance is one of the most important things you can do for your business (and for yourself)!

Young girl with a make-up artist in the studio in front of a mirror. Makeup article.

Final Thoughts

Starting your own makeup business can be a very rewarding experience. But it’s important to go into it with your eyes wide open. Be prepared for the challenges that you’ll face and don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it.

If you can do these things, then you’ll be well on your way to success!

Got any questions or comments for us? We’d love to hear from you! Leave us a comment down below or send us an email at [email protected].

Thanks for reading! đź’•

How to find a niche for your makeup business Feature Image

How to Find a Niche for Your Makeup Business

By Career Advice, Your Makeup Career No Comments

One of the most important decisions you will make when starting your makeup business is deciding on a niche. Picking the right niche can help you focus your efforts and attract customers who are interested in what you have to offer. In this article, we’ll discuss the value of specialization and how to find a niche for your makeup business.

Plus, we’ll also reveal some popular niche ideas you can use to get started. So, let’s jump into it, shall we?

Wait! Before we go any further, do you first know how to become a professional makeup artist – even without any prior experience? If not, you should check out our step-by-step guide first!

Beauty Niche Meaning – What Is a Niche?

A niche is a defined target market that you focus your business on. When it comes to makeup, there are endless possibilities for niches! You can focus on providing services for weddings, movie sets, or fashion shoots. Or, you could specialize in working with clients who have skin conditions like acne or rosacea.

The benefits of specializing in a niche are twofold. First, it allows you to become an expert in your field and attract customers who are looking for that expertise. Second, it helps you stand out from the competition by offering something unique that other businesses don’t.

What Makes a Strong Niche?

When you’re trying to decide on a niche for your makeup business, there are a few factors to consider. First, you’ll want to make sure that the niche is something you’re actually passionate about. After all, you’ll be spending a lot of time working in this area!

Second, you’ll want to ensure that there’s a demand for the services you plan to offer. For example, if you love doing special effects makeup but there aren’t many clients in your area looking for that type of service, it may not be the best niche for your business.

Third, you’ll want to make sure that the niche is something you can realistically achieve. For instance, if your goal is to become the go-to MUA for fashion shows but you live in a small town, it may be tough to make that happen.

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Is The Beauty Industry a Niche Market?

The beauty industry is a great example of a niche market! This is because there are endless possibilities for niches within the industry, from hair stylists to skincare consultant to makeup artists. And, because the industry is so vast, there’s always room for new businesses to find their niche and succeed.

What Sells The Most in The Beauty Industry?

Some of the most popular items in the beauty industry include makeup, skincare products, hair care products, and fragrance. Of course, this varies depending on the niche you’re in and your professional qualifications. For example, if you specialize in natural cosmetics, your best-selling services might be different than those of a MUA who focuses on special effects makeup.

Niche Makeup Business Trends: What is The Target Market for Makeup?

Now that we’ve discussed what a niche is and why it’s important for your makeup business, let’s talk about how to find the perfect niche for you. To do this, you’ll need to first start by identifying your target market.

Your target market is the group of people who are most likely to use your products or services. When it comes to makeup, your target market could be anyone from teenage girls to working moms to brides-to-be. Once you’ve identified your target market, you can start narrowing down possible niches.

For example, if your target market is teenage girls, you could specialize in providing natural makeup looks or teaching them how to do their own makeup. If your target market is working moms, you could focus on providing quick and easy makeup routines that fit into busy schedules. And, if your target market is brides-to-be, you could specialize in doing wedding makeup or creating custom makeup looks for each bride.

fashion portrait with pink and green. a beautiful glamor model with stylish make-up on the face a shimmer on the cheekbones and shiny pink lipstick on the lips. sexy girl with copy space

How to Find a Niche for Your Makeup Business

There are a few things to keep in mind when you’re trying to find the perfect niche for your makeup business…

As we mentioned earlier, the first thing you’ll want to do is make sure that the niche you pick is something you’ll legitimately enjoy doing. Secondly, you’ll want to ensure that there’s actually a demand for that particular service in your area. Lastly, you’ll want to make sure that the niche is something you can realistically achieve.

Once you’ve considered these factors, it’s time to start brainstorming possible niches for your business. To get started, here are a few specialized makeup business ideas:

  • Makeup artist for brides
  • Makeup artist for special occasions
  • Personalized makeup consultant
  • Virtual makeup consultant
  • Natural cosmetics specialist
  • Airbrush makeup artist
  • Skincare consultant
  • Hair stylist
  • Fashion stylist
  • Special effects makeup artist
  • Global beauty makeup artist

Let’s take a closer look at each of these specializations…

Our Top 11 Specialized Makeup Business Ideas

Niche #1: Makeup Artist for Brides

As a makeup artist for brides, you would be responsible for creating custom looks for each bride on her big day. This could include doing a trial run before the wedding, as well as the actual wedding day itself. Additionally, you may also be hired to do the makeup for the bridesmaids, mother of the bride, etc.

Target Market

  • Brides
  • Wedding parties

Special Skills Needed for This Niche

  • Ability to create custom looks for each bride
  • Knowledge of different skin types and tones
  • Ability to work with a variety of makeup products
  • Time-management skills/efficiency
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Pros and Cons of Being a Bridal Makeup Artist

Pros:
  • You get to be a part of someone’s special day
  • There is potential for repeat clients
  • Can be very lucrative
  • Provides excellent networking opportunities with vendors, suppliers, and venues
  • Very in-demand service that shows no signs of slowing down
  • Potential for a great salary (especially during peak wedding season)
Cons:
  • May require working on weekends, evenings, and holidays
  • Can be very demanding and stressful, especially during peak wedding season
  • Requires a high level of skill and experience

Interested in a career as a wedding/bridal MUA? QC Makeup Academy‘s self-paced, online Master Makeup Artistry Course can get you trained, internationally certified, and ready to book your first bride in as little as 2-6 months!

Niche #2: Makeup Artist for Special Occasions

As a makeup artist for special occasions, you would be responsible for creating looks for clients who have important events to attend. This could include anything from birthday parties and graduations to red carpet events and galas. You would need to be able to create a variety of looks, as well as have the ability to work with last-minute requests.

Target Market

  • Clients with special occasions (birthdays, graduations, red carpet events, galas, etc.)

Special Skills Needed for This Niche

  • Ability to create custom looks for each client, based on the type of event being attended
  • Flexibility/adaptability
  • The ability to work with a variety of makeup products
  • Time-management skills/efficiency

Pros and Cons of Being a Special Occasion Makeup Artist

Pros:
  • You get to help clients look their best for their big day
  • There is potential for repeat clients
  • Can be very lucrative
  • Provides excellent networking opportunities with vendors, suppliers, and venues
  • The various types of events will give you ample experience doing different kinds of makeup for a variety of situations
Cons:
  • May require working on weekends, evenings, and holidays
  • Requires a high level of skill and experience
  • Can be very demanding and stressful, especially during peak season (graduations, proms, etc.)
Funny girl in birthday hat on blue background

Niche #3: Personalized Makeup Consultant

As a personalized makeup consultant, you would be responsible for helping clients choose the right makeup products for their individual needs. This could include anything from finding the perfect foundation shade to selecting the right skincare routine. You would need to have in-depth knowledge of a variety of different makeup products and brands, as well as be able to help clients find the products that fit their budget.

Target Market

  • Clients who need help finding the right makeup products

Special Skills Needed for This Niche

  • In-depth knowledge of different makeup products, brands, and ingredients
  • Ability to find products that fit each client’s individual needs and budget
  • Knowledge of the different skin types
  • Excellent customer service skills

Pros and Cons of Being a Personalized Makeup Consultant

Pros:
  • You get to help clients find the products that are right for them
  • Can be very lucrative
  • Ample opportunity for positive reviews and word-of-mouth referrals
  • Flexible hours/work-from-home opportunities
Cons:
  • Requires in-depth knowledge of different makeup products, brands, and ingredients
  • May require working with clients who are not familiar with makeup or have specific needs/requests
  • Some clients may be unhappy with the products you recommend

Niche #4: Virtual Makeup Consultant

As a virtual makeup consultant, you would be responsible for helping clients choose the right makeup products for their individual needs via video chat or phone call. This could include anything from finding the perfect foundation shade to selecting the right skincare routine. You would need to have in-depth knowledge of a variety of different makeup products and brands, as well as be able to help clients find the products that fit their budget.

Furthermore, you would need to be able to properly communicate this knowledge, all through virtual correspondence (rather than via face-to-face interactions).

Target Market

  • Clients who need help finding the right makeup products but cannot meet in person due to physical, mental, or emotional limitations
  • Long distance clients

Special Skills Needed for This Niche

  • In-depth knowledge of different makeup products, brands, and ingredients
  • Ability to find products that fit each client’s individual needs and budget
  • Knowledge of the different skin types
  • Excellent customer service skills
  • Proper virtual communication skills
  • Basic technological skills (needed to use video chat apps/software, etc.)

Pros and Cons of Being a Virtual Makeup Consultant

Pros:
  • You get to help clients find the products that are right for them
  • Can be very lucrative
  • Flexible hours/work-from-home opportunities
  • No need to commute or travel to meet with clients, which means a larger client pool for you to book with
Cons:
  • Requires in-depth knowledge of different makeup products, brands, and ingredients
  • May require working with clients who are not familiar with makeup or have specific needs/requests
  • Some clients may be unhappy with the products you recommend
  • You will need to invest in some basic technology (video chat software, a smart phone if you don’t already have one, etc.)

Fun Fact: YOU can learn how to take your makeup business online in as little as one month by completing QC Makeup Academy’s online Virtual Makeup Training mini course!

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Niche #5: Natural Cosmetics Specialist

As a natural cosmetics specialist, you would be responsible for helping clients find the right makeup and skincare products that are made with all-natural ingredients. This could include anything from finding the perfect foundation shade to selecting the right organic skincare routine. You’d need to have in-depth knowledge of a variety of natural makeup and skincare products and brands, as well as be able to help clients find the products that fit their budget.

Target Market

  • Clients who want to use makeup and skincare products made with natural ingredients

Special Skills Needed for This Niche

  • In-depth knowledge of different all-natural makeup and skincare products, brands, and ingredients
  • Ability to find products that fit each client’s individual needs and budget
  • Excellent customer service skills
  • Knowledge of different skin types, so you can make informed recommendations that will best suit their skin, goals, and needs

Pros and Cons of Being a Natural Cosmetics Specialist

Pros:
  • You get to help clients find the safest, healthiest products that are right for them
  • Can be very lucrative
  • Flexible hours/work-from-home opportunities
  • You get to help clients improve their makeup and/or skincare routines while also ensuring their skin stays safe
  • Moral benefit of using all-natural, free-from-harm, organic products
Cons:
  • Requires in-depth knowledge of different makeup/skincare products, brands, and ingredients
  • May require working with clients who are not familiar with makeup or have specific needs/requests
  • Some clients may be unhappy with the products you recommend

Niche #6: Airbrush Makeup Artist

An airbrush makeup artist is responsible for providing clients with a flawless complexion using an airbrush machine. As an airbrush MUA, you’d need to have in-depth knowledge of how to use the machine, as well as a variety of different foundation shades and formulas. You would also need to be able to find products that fit each client’s individual needs and budget.

Never seen airbrush makeup artistry in action before? Watch this fun, informative webinar with QC executive instructor, Nathan Johnson, and airbrush MUA extraordinaire, Marc Harvey!

Target Market

  • Clients who want perfect, flawless skin for their wedding day or other special event
  • Models for photoshoots
  • Actors for film and television
  • Special effects makeup clients

Special Skills Needed for This Niche

  • In-depth knowledge of how to safely and properly use an airbrush machine
  • Attention to detail, precision, and finesse
  • Ability to find products that fit each client’s individual needs and budget
  • Excellent customer service skills

Pros and Cons of Being an Airbrush Makeup Artist

Pros:
  • Can be very lucrative
  • Potential to earn a killer income
  • Endless job opportunities in various makeup fields
  • You get to help clients improve their makeup routine while also providing them with perfect, flawless skin
Cons:
  • Requires in-depth knowledge of different airbrush machines and how to properly use them
  • May require working with clients who are not familiar with makeup or have specific needs/requests
  • Some clients may be unhappy with the end result

Add an Airbrush Makeup Workshop certificate to your resume in as little as 8 weeks by enrolling in QC Makeup Academy’s Airbrush Makeup Workshop today! Oh, and did we mention you’ll receive a FREE airbrush machine as part of your course tools? As a result, you’ll be able to master airbrush makeup right from the get-go!

Beauty Fashion Model Woman , portrait, hairstyle with . Concept Girl face with perfect skin and dark lips in bright Background with hand holding aerograph.

Niche #7: Skincare Consultant

A skincare consultant is responsible for providing clients with customized skincare routines and products that fit their individual needs. As a skincare consultant, you’d need to have in-depth knowledge of different skincare ingredients, formulas, and brands. You would also need to be able to find products that fit each client’s individual budget.

Target Market

  • Clients who want help finding the best skincare routine and products for their skin type
  • People with specific skincare concerns (e.g., acne, aging, dryness)

Special Skills Needed for This Niche

  • In-depth knowledge of different skincare ingredients, formulas, and brands
  • Subject-matter expertise about skin types, skincare concerns, etc.
  • Ability to find products that fit each client’s individual budget
  • Excellent customer service skills
  • Tact and empathy

Pros and Cons of Being a Skincare Consultant

Pros:
  • You get to help clients find the best skincare routine and products for their skin type
  • Can be very lucrative, with the potential to earn a high income
  • Pairs perfectly with a makeup business
  • Flexible hours/work-from-home opportunities
  • You get to help clients improve their skincare routines while also ensuring their skin stays healthy
  • Creates the best possible canvas on which to also apply makeup
Cons:
  • Requires in-depth knowledge of different skincare ingredients, formulas, and brands
  • Failure to properly understand skin types and/or skincare products can have potentially damaging consequences
  • May require working with clients who are not familiar with skincare or have specific needs/requests
  • Some clients may be unhappy with the products you recommend

Pro Tip: In as little as 2 short months, you can become an International Skincare Consulting Professional (ISCP), thanks to QC’s online Skincare Course!

Niche #8: Hair Stylist

A hair stylist is responsible for styling their clients’ hair for everyday wear and/or special occasions. As a hair stylist, you’d need to have in-depth knowledge of different hair types, textures, and styles. You would also need to be up-to-date on the latest hair trends.

Target Market

  • Clients who need help styling their hair for upcoming events (e.g., weddings, proms, graduations, parties, etc.)
  • Clients who wish to have both their hair and makeup taken care of under one roof (as opposed to sourcing two different vendors)

Special Skills Needed for This Niche

  • In-depth knowledge of different hair types, textures, and styles
  • Ability to find products that fit each client’s individual budget
  • Excellent customer service skills
  • Knowledge of current, popular hair styling trends, braiding trends, up-dos, etc.
  • Bonus: knowing how to perfectly pair a given hairstyle to a particular makeup look, in order to meet the client’s expectations and properly reflect the event they’ll be attending

Pros and Cons of Being a Hair Stylist

Pros:
  • Can be very lucrative
  • Pairs perfectly with a makeup business, which will provide additional streams of income
  • Opens you up to a wider clientele
  • Flexible hours/work-from-home opportunities
  • You get to help clients find the best hairstyle for their face shape and hair type, while also ensuring their hair stays healthy
  • Lots of possible job opportunities (i.e., weddings, photoshoots, theater, film and television, etc.)
Cons:
  • Requires in-depth knowledge of different hair types, textures, and styles
  • Failure to properly understand hair types and/or hairstyling products can have potentially damaging consequences
  • May require working with clients who are not familiar with hair styling or have specific needs/requests (e.g., those with thinning hair, alopecia, etc.)
  • Some clients may be unhappy with the hairstyle you create for them

If you’re interested in adding hairstyling services to your makeup business, we strongly recommend checking out QC’s Hairstyling Essentials Course! In turn, we’ll help prepare you to book your first client within just a couple short months!

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Niche #9: Fashion Stylist

A fashion stylist is responsible for helping their clients put together the perfect outfit for any occasion. As a fashion stylist, you need to have an eye for detail and be up-to-date on the latest fashion trends. You would also need to be able to find clothing that fits each client’s individual budget.

Target Market

  • Clients who need help selecting the perfect outfit for an upcoming event (e.g., wedding, graduation, prom, party, photoshoot, work event, red carpet event, etc.)
  • Clients who are looking to refine their everyday attire for personal purposes

Special Skills Needed for This Niche

  • In-depth knowledge of current fashion trends
  • Ability to find clothing that fits each client’s individual budget
  • Excellent customer service skills
  • Creativity and an eye for detail
  • Ability to match clothing to hairstyles, makeup, etc.
  • Ability to find clothing that will help the client achieve their goals (i.e., looking good for an event, fitting better with their everyday lifestyle, etc.)

Pros and Cons of Being a Fashion Stylist

Pros:
  • Can be very lucrative, with the potential for a high income
  • Pairs perfectly with a makeup business, hairstyling business, etc.
  • Opens you up to a wider clientele
  • Flexible hours/work-from-home opportunities
  • You get to help clients find the best clothes for their body type, while also staying within their budget
  • Lots of possible job opportunities (i.e., weddings, photoshoots, theater, film and television, high-profile events, etc.)
Cons:
  • Requires in-depth knowledge of current fashion trends
  • Failure to properly understand fashion trends can result in outdated or unflattering clothing selections for clients
  • May require working with clients who are not familiar with fashion or have specific needs/requests (e.g., those with a limited budget but have luxurious taste, etc.)
  • Some clients may be unhappy with the clothing you select for them

Have we piqued your interest? Do you want to become a Certified International Styling Professional (CISP™)? If so, learn more about QC’s online Fashion Styling Course!

Niche #10: Special Effects Makeup Artist

A special effects makeup artist is responsible for creating custom and realistic-looking makeup designs for their clients. As a special effects makeup artist, you need to have an eye for detail and be able to create a wide range of looks, from the simplest to the most complex.

Target Market

  • Clients who need help finding the perfect makeup look for an upcoming event (e.g., Halloween, cosplay convention, masquerade ball, etc.)
  • Clients who are looking for a unique and customized makeup look
  • Film, television, and/or theater productions in need of an SFX makeup artist
  • Clients looking to create character makeup

Special Skills Needed for This Niche

  • In-depth knowledge of different SFX makeup products and techniques
  • Ability to create a wide range of horror, fantasy, and special effects looks, from the simplest to the most complex
  • Ability to create realistic gore and/or wounds
  • Excellent customer service skills
  • Creativity and an eye for detail
  • Ability to find the perfect makeup look for each client’s individual needs
  • Ability to create character makeup based on a script

Pros and Cons of Being a Special Effects Makeup Artist

Pros:
  • Can be very lucrative
  • Has the potential to be one of the highest paying makeup jobs
  • Is considered to be an advanced skill, thus making it extremely attractive to prospective clients
  • Opens you up to a wider clientele
  • Ample opportunity to get creative
  • Lots of possible high-end job opportunities (i.e., working in film, television, and theater, etc.)
Cons:
  • Requires in-depth knowledge of different SFX makeup products and techniques
  • Failure to properly understand these makeup products and techniques can result in poor quality work
  • Clients may not be familiar with the special effects process, which can lead to unrealistic expectations
  • The work can be physically demanding (e.g., having to apply prosthetics for long periods of time, etc.)
  • Not the best fit for someone who’s squeamish, as you may need to work with fake blood, create realistic wounds/gore, etc.

Does special effects makeup sound like the PERFECT niche for your makeup business? Then you need to enroll in QC’s online Special FX Makeup Course today and become an International Special FX Makeup Professional (ISMP)!

close up portrait of young beautiful girl with colorful face painting. Halloween professional makeup. hair in paint. beauty portrait. blue and pink hair

Niche #11: Global Beauty Makeup Artist

A global beauty expert is capable of working with clients from all around the world; creating makeup looks on any and all skin tones. Furthermore, their knowledge of global beauty practices makes them the leading expert to hire for religious and/or cultural events, such as international weddings. Thus, if one is looking for a prosperous niche for their makeup business, becoming a global beauty expert is the way to go!

Target Market

  • Clients who are looking for a makeup artist who is knowledgeable in global beauty practices
  • Clients who are getting married and want their wedding to reflect their culture/religion
  • Religious and/or cultural events that require a makeup artist (e.g., Chinese New Year, Diwali, etc.)

Special Skills Needed for This Niche

  • In-depth knowledge of global beauty trends and makeup techniques
  • Ability to work with clients from all around the world, on any and all skin tones
  • Flexibility to be able to create a wide range of looks, from natural to dramatic
  • Excellent customer service skills
  • Creativity and an eye for detail
  • An understanding of various cultural and/or religious traditions, in order to properly reflect them and meet cultural/religious standards

Pros and Cons of Being a Global Beauty Makeup Artist

Pros:
  • Can be extremely lucrative
  • Drastically opens up your potential client reach
  • Is considered to be an advanced skill, thus making it extremely attractive to prospective clients
  • Expands your client reach to people from all around the world
  • Flexibility to work in other countries
  • Ample opportunity to get creative and experiment with different global beauty techniques and looks
Cons:
  • Requires in-depth knowledge of global beauty trends and practices
  • Failure to properly understand these trends and practices can result in poor quality work or even cultural appropriation
  • The work can be physically demanding (e.g., having to apply makeup, henna tattoos, etc. for long periods of time)
  • Not the best fit for someone who doesn’t like to travel, as you may need to work in other countries

Do you have what it takes to be a global beauty makeup artist? If so, you’ll learn everything you need to know to succeed in QC’s Global Beauty Workshop! Enroll today and earn your certificate of completion in as little as 8 weeks!

Conclusion

There you have it! These are just a few of the many makeup business niches out there that you can specialize in.

Remember: it’s important to pick a niche that you’re passionate about and that you have the skillset to excel in. With hard work and dedication, you can make your dreams of being a successful makeup artist come true!

Which of these niches interests YOU the most? Let us know in the comments below! And while you’re at it, be sure to check out our other blog post on 15 Tips to Grow Your Makeup Business for even more advice on getting your company off the ground.

Good luck… And thanks for reading! đź’•

Start your dream career as a makeup artist by enrolling with QC Makeup Academy today!

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15 Tips to Grow Your Makeup Business

By Career Advice, Your Makeup Career No Comments

Are you looking to take your professional makeup career to the next level? If so, you’re in luck! In this blog post, we’ll provide you with 15 tips to grow your makeup business. These tips will help you reach a wider audience, book more clients, and increase your income.

So, whether you’re just starting out as an MUA or you’ve been in the industry for years, this advice will help you reach new heights.

Let’s get started!

Frequently Asked Questions

First thing’s first: let’s address some of the most commonly asked questions surrounding this topic and give them some answers!

How Do Makeup Artists Grow?

First thing’s first: as a makeup artist, what can you do to better your skill-set and take your expertise to the next level? After all, in order to expand your business, you’re going to need the high-quality services to back it up!

Here are a few things you can do to make sure you’re always on top of your game:

  • Stay up-to-date with the latest trends! This means following popular (and professional) MUAs on social media, reading industry news, attending makeup shows and conferences, etc.
  • Practice, practice, practice! The more real-world experience you have working with different products and techniques, the better equipped you’ll be to handle any client request that comes your way.
  • Get feedback from clients and peers alike! It’s important to get an outsider’s perspective on your work so that you can identify areas for improvement.
  • On that note, always be open to constructive criticism! No one is perfect, and there’s always room for improvement.

Furthermore, the single best way to grow as a makeup artist is to ensure that you get proper, professional training – such as that offered by QC Makeup Academy! QC’s self-paced, online makeup and beauty programs can be done right from the comfort of home, provide tons of hands-on experience, and give you a full unit devoted entirely to business training.

Plus, once you graduate, you’ll receive an internationally-recognized certification AND designation. Not only can you then add this to your resume; it’ll also be sure to WOW clients and make them more likely to book with you!

Learn all about QC Makeup Academy’s wide variety of online makeup courses here!

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How Do Makeup Artists Get Noticed?

Now that we’ve covered ways in which you can improve your skills as an MUA, let’s move on to the topic of getting your name out there. After all, if you’re not busy with work, then it’s time to figure out how to change that!

Here are a few ideas:

  1. Start by branding yourself and creating an online presence. This could include setting up a website or blog, building a social media following, etc. Make sure your brand is consistent across all platforms and that your messaging is clear.
  2. Network with other professionals in the industry (i.e. other makeup artists, hair stylists, photographers, etc.) and collaborate whenever possible. Not only will this help expose your business to new people; it’ll also allow you to build positive relationships with others in your field.
  3. Consider exhibiting at local trade shows or other events related to the beauty industry. This is a great way to reach new potential clients and promote your business in person!
  4. Finally, don’t forget the power of word-of-mouth marketing! Encourage happy clients to leave reviews online and tell their friends about your services. Positive customer testimonials can be extremely valuable for attracting new business.

How Do I Do Freelance Makeup?

A freelance makeup artist is someone who is self-employed and works on a contract basis, usually with individual clients. This can be a great option for those who want more freedom and flexibility in their work schedule.

So, how do you become a freelance makeup artist? Here are a few tips:

First, start by building up your portfolio of work. This will give potential clients a better idea of the services you offer and the quality of your work. Next, develop a strong network of contacts within the industry and collaborate whenever possible.

Then, market yourself aggressively! Use all of the resources at your disposal (e.g. social media, online directories, word-of-mouth, etc.) to get your name out there and attract new clients. Finally, be sure to keep your business organized and efficient by staying on top of things like scheduling, invoicing, etc.

Ultimately, the better you are at running your business, the more successful you’ll be as a freelancer!

Need more help getting your freelancing career started? Check out this article by Entrepreneur for their 6-step path to success!

Close up of a stunning beautiful young woman getting professional makeup. Makeup artist applying lipstick on a female client

How Can I Grow My Makeup Business?

Alright, let’s get to the real reason why you’re here… You’ve more than likely been thinking to yourself, “How can I get more makeup clients? What can I do to take my business to the next level?”

Luckily, we’ve got 15 tips that can achieve these very goals! So, let’s take a look at them…

15 Tips to Grow Your Makeup Business

Tip #1: Stay up to date with the latest trends!

In order to be successful, it’s important that you’re always keeping up with the latest makeup trends. This means regularly checking out new products, watching makeup tutorials online, and attending industry events. By staying up-to-date, you’ll be able to offer your clients the latest and greatest services!

Tip #2: Get involved with social media!

Social media is a powerful tool that can help you reach a wider audience and promote your business. Make sure you’re active on all of the major platforms (e.g. Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, Pinterest, YouTube, LinkedIn, etc.) and that your branding is consistent across all channels.

Here are some tips to keep in mind when creating your social media accounts:

  • Use original, high-quality images and videos
  • Write engaging captions
  • Offer exclusive deals and promotions
  • Host giveaways and contests
  • Follow and engage with other beauty experts you admire
  • Always respond to comments and messages others leave for you
  • Reflect your brand in everything that you post

A strong social media presence will have you attracting new clients and growing your makeup business in no time!

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Tip #3: Create a website for your makeup business!

A website is a must-have for any business, and the same holds true for makeup artists. Not only will it give potential clients a better idea of who you are and what services you offer – it’ll also allow you to build positive relationships with others in your field.

When creating your website, be sure to include the following:

  • Your professional biography
  • Examples of your work (a.k.a. your makeup portfolio)
  • Testimonials from previous clients
  • The services you offer
  • Links to your social media accounts
  • Prices (if applicable)
  • Contact information
  • An online booking form or e-commerce shop (optional)

Pro Tip: Keep in mind that designing and maintaining a website can be a lot of work. So, if you’re not confident in your web design skills, consider hiring a professional to help you out.

Tip #4: Get creative with your marketing!

There are endless possibilities when it comes to marketing your makeup business. So, get creative and think outside the box! Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Collaborate with other businesses in the industry (e.g. hair salons, spas, etc.) to cross-promote your services!
  • Sponsor a local event or charity! This is a great way to give back to the community and promote your business at the same time.
  • Create a blog or YouTube channel and share your expert knowledge with the world!

By getting creative with your marketing, you’ll be able to reach a whole new audience and grow your business like never before.

Tip #5: Don’t forget about online marketing, too!

These days, online marketing will be your best friend. Make sure you’re utilizing all of the available resources, such as directories (e.g. Yelp, Google, etc.), review sites (e.g. MakeupAlley), and social media platforms (again, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, etc.).

Furthermore, a worthy investment for your makeup business will be in paid advertisements. With paid ads, you can specifically target your ideal clientele via social media, Google ads, etc., and see a great return on the money you’ve invested into this venture.

By taking advantage of online marketing tools, you’ll be able to reach a larger audience and attract more clients!

Happy young woman streaming a beauty vlog from home, online content creator applying a makeup

Tip #6: Keep your prices competitive!

In order for potential clients to choose YOU over your competition, it’s important that your prices are competitive. However, this doesn’t mean that you should be giving away your services for free! Rather, you should take some time to research the going rates in your area. This way, you can make sure you’re pricing yourself accordingly.

Remember, too, that you can always offer discounts and promotions to attract new clients. (We’ll cover this in the next tip.) Just be sure that you’re still making a profit!

We’ve put together some additional information on properly pricing your makeup business services, so make sure to check it out!

Tip #7: Consider offering discounts and incentives!

When first starting out, it can be tough to attract new clients. One of the best ways to do so is by offering discounts and promotions! This will show potential clients that you’re serious about your work, and that you’re willing to go above and beyond to earn their business.

Some ideas for discounts and promotions include (but aren’t limited to):

  • A percentage off your services for first-time customers
  • Free makeup consultations for first-time clients
  • A complimentary service with each booking (e.g. a free skincare consultation with every makeup application)
  • Two-for-one deals
  • Referral programs (e.g. $20 off your next service for every friend or family member you refer)

There are endless possibilities when it comes to offering discounts and incentives. So, get creative and find what works best for you and your makeup business!

Tip #8: Offer a variety of makeup and beauty services!

Makeup artists often specialize in one area or another – such as weddings, special effects, or everyday makeup looks. However, it’s always a good idea to offer a variety of services in order to appeal to a wider audience. This way, you’ll be able to attract more clients and book more jobs, since your business will be a one-stop-shop for their beauty needs!

Some of the most popular services that MUAs offer include (but again, aren’t limited to):

  • Wedding/bridal makeup
  • Special effects makeup
  • Hair styling
  • Airbrush makeup
  • Editorial/photoshoot makeup
  • Fashion styling
  • Global beauty
  • Runway and fashion makeup
  • Makeup for film and television

By diversifying your services, you’ll be able to appeal to more people and grow your business at the same time!

Did you know that QC Makeup Academy offers certification training for ALL of the above specialties? It’s true! If you didn’t do so earlier, discover our wide range of online beauty courses here!

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Tip #9: Develop a strong makeup portfolio!

Your portfolio is essentially your resume. It’s what potential clients will use to judge your skills as a makeup artist. So, make sure it’s up-to-date and includes a mix of both personal and professional work. Also, don’t forget to showcase your range by including photos of different makeup styles!

Never put together a professional makeup portfolio before? Then make sure to keep this advice in mind:

  • Only use high-quality photos
  • Keep your portfolio organized and easy to navigate
  • In addition to makeup, include photos of your other beauty skills (if applicable), such as hair styling
  • Make sure the overall look of the portfolio is polished, cohesive, and professional
  • Show a range of makeup techniques and styles – but make sure not to show too many, otherwise your portfolio will be overcluttered

If you need help putting together a strong makeup portfolio, QC Makeup Academy has your back! Our 2-unit Portfolio Development Workshop will teach you everything you need to know to create a stunning, jaw-dropping display of your best work!

Tip #10: Offer virtual makeup and beauty services!

Over the course of the pandemic, many people have opted to stay home and avoid public places. As a result of the on-and-off gathering restrictions over the past couple of years, in-person makeup services weren’t always an option. However, the world quickly discovered that this did not mean that beauty professionals can’t still provide clients with the services they need!

Thanks to today’s technology, you can offer virtual makeup and beauty services – such as video tutorials, makeup and/or skincare consultations, and even full makeup applications! All you need is a good internet connection and some basic video-chat software (like Skype or Zoom). This way, you can continue to book jobs and make money, even during these uncertain times.

Furthermore, virtual beauty services will still provide your makeup business with major benefits even long after the pandemic is over. Namely, because they’ll allow you to work with customers from all over the world. This means that your (or your client’s) location will never be an issue.

And who knows? You might even start getting more requests for virtual services than in-person services!

Learn how to take your makeup business online in less than a month by enrolling today in QC’s 1-unit Virtual Makeup Training mini course!

Tip #11: Offer private and/or group makeup lessons!

One of the best ways to grow your makeup business is to offer private and/or group lessons. This way, you can teach people about everything from basic makeup application techniques to more advanced skills, like special effects makeup.

Not only will teaching others help you hone your own skills as a MUA; it’ll also give you a chance to build relationships with potential clients! In addition, if you’re able to create a successful course, you could even start selling it online or through other channels.

Just remember, though, that you should only be training others if you’ve first been trained yourself. Teaching makeup lessons when unqualified can have disastrous results, and lead to your business getting bad reviews (which we know you don’t want)!

Young beautiful bride applying wedding makeup by makeup artist

Tip #12: Attend beauty conventions and trade shows!

Attending beauty conventions and trade shows is a great way to get your makeup business in front of new potential clients. Plus, you can also use these events as an opportunity to learn about the latest industry trends and products (hello, Tip #1!).

Just be sure to do your research before attending any convention or trade show. This way, you’ll know which ones are worth your time and money – and which ones you should avoid.

If you’re not sure where to start, we recommend checking out some of the smaller regional shows. Not only are they more affordable than larger events, but they also tend to have a more intimate atmosphere that’s conducive to networking.

On that note…

Tip #13: Network, network, network!

Networking is key in any business – but it’s especially important in the beauty industry. After all, word-of-mouth is still one of the best ways to grow your makeup business!

So, how do you network effectively? Start by attending industry events (like the ones we mentioned in the last tip), and get to know as many people as you can. You never know when one of those connections could come in handy.

In addition, social media is also a great tool for networking these days. So, be sure to make use of platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to connect with others in your field. (Just remember to use caution when sharing personal information online.)

Finally, don’t forget about good old fashioned face-to-face networking! You can attend local meetups, join industry associations, or even host your own networking events.

Tip #14: Take part in a stylized photoshoot!

Another way to network face-to-face is to lend your makeup artistry skills to a stylized photoshoot. What’s a styled photoshoot? Well, it’s basically when a team of creatives come together to create a themed shoot. This could be anything from a fashion editorial to a wedding shoot.

By participating in stylized photoshoots, you’ll not only get the chance to work with other creatives; you’ll also have the opportunity to showcase your skills to potential clients! In addition, if the photos are published or go viral, you could see a surge in traffic to your website or social media pages.

Just be sure that you’re selective about which shoots you participate in. You don’t want your name associated with any shoddy productions – it’ll only reflect poorly on your business.

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Tip #15: Get involved in your community!

Finally, one of the best ways to grow your makeup business is to get involved in your local community. This could involve anything from volunteering at a women’s shelter to working with a local theater group.

Not only will getting involved in your community help you give back; it’ll also help you build relationships with potential clients. And, as we all know by now, word-of-mouth is still one of the best marketing tools around!

So, there you have it: 15 tips to help you grow your makeup business! We hope that this advice will help you reach a wider audience, book more clients, and increase your income. But most importantly, we hope they’ll help you achieve your dreams!

Which tip did YOU find the most beneficial?

Let us know in the comments below! đź’•

Get your makeup business up and running in as little as 2-6 months by starting your professional training with QC Makeup Academy today!