What does a Makeup Artist do?

A makeup artist is responsible for visually transforming people's' appearance via make-up, paint, wigs, and other accessories. Makeup artists have the ability to determine the correct material and application according to lighting, setting and physical facial features. They apply simple and complex makeup as required by the client ensuring the needs of the client are met. Makeup artists can work in a variety of industries including entertainment, fashion or cosmetic service. They may also work as a freelancer or part of a team.

Generally, makeup artists must complete a diploma from a vocational school in cosmetology or makeup with at least 3 years of experience within their chosen industry. Successful makeup artists possess excellent communication and interpersonal skills and have an artistic personality.

What responsibilities are common for Makeup Artist jobs?
  • Communicate with clients to understand their needs and wants
  • Stay up to date with the latest best practices, tools, and technology in your field
  • Adhere to personal hygiene standards
  • Determine the necessary supplies and equipment needed
  • Assist in applying and removing makeup and prosthetics
  • Apply makeup in a professional manner
  • Understand requirements from a visual and technical standpoint
  • Create appropriate hairstyling to complement makeup
What are the typical qualifications for Makeup Artist jobs?
  • Excellent knowledge of makeup products, techniques, and technologies
  • 5 years of experience in the makeup industry
  • Exceptional communication and interpersonal skills
  • Superior attention to detail
  • Creative mindset and artistic personality
  • Customer oriented with a proactive and positive attitude
  • Technical understanding of lighting, photography, styles, and dramatization
  • Deep understanding of health and safety rules
  • Great understanding of makeup and hairdressing techniques
Work/Life Balance
3.3 ★
Total Pay--
Career Opportunity
3.3 ★
Avg. Experience2-4 years

How much does a Makeup Artist make near United States?

$59,390 /yr
Total Pay

Base Pay


Additional Pay


 / yr
Most Likely Range
Possible Range
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Makeup Artist Career Path

Learn how to become a Makeup Artist, what skills and education you need to succeed, and what level of pay to expect at each step on your career path.

Makeup Artist

Years of Experience Distribution

0 - 1
2 - 4
5 - 7
Not including years spent in education and/or training

Makeup Artist Insights

Read what Makeup Artist professionals have to say about their job experiences and view top companies for this career.
Makeup Artist
Feb 18, 2023

“It is home based so it was comfortable and I learned all sides of this business”

Marguarite & Co Unisex Salon
Aug 7, 2021

“The pay was great and I always strived to do better than the day before.”

Freelance Makeup Artist
Jun 30, 2022

“Some time face many more things which is not good for our work also get bad experiences.”

M·A·C CosmeticsM·A·C Cosmetics
Makeup Artist
Apr 23, 2023

“I guess just not much work life balance but that’s the retail life anywhere you go.”

Lakmé Academy Powered By AptechLakmé Academy Powered By Aptech
Makeup Artist
Feb 8, 2023

“4. payment was always late then due dates. 5. they only give 1 sick leave a month and no other leaves which is miserable.”

Freelance Makeup Artist
Jun 9, 2021

“very good and rewarding in this career”

The Threading PlaceThe Threading Place
Eyebrow Threader
Feb 26, 2022

“Good place to work and nice”

Estée Lauder CompaniesEstée Lauder Companies
Make Up Artist
Jul 28, 2021

“You get to work with some of the top makeup artist and you get trainings every 6 months”

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Makeup Artist Interviews

Frequently asked questions about the roles and responsibilities of a Makeup Artist

The most similar professions to Makeup Artist are:
  • Salon Manager
  • Beauty Consultant
  • Hair Stylist
  • Spa Attendant

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