When to hire a makeup artist and how to know if they are a professional or just someone with a lot of makeup?
There are times when the need for your makeup to look flawless - professional head shot, red carpet events, gala's, wedding day, first dates, portraits. The problem is you feel like you don't know the first thing about putting makeup on let alone how to get camera ready. On top of all this you want your makeup to be natural in style and products. So what to do?
Google? Yelp? Bing? Good luck. You could be emailing and calling all day. Run to the makeup counter at the mall? Too much of a gamble.
Not to mention there are "makeup artists" (someone who bought makeup and started advertising their services) all over. The professionals (trained and licensed) are harder to find and will cost more than the "MUA" on Thumbtack.
First step - ask your salon or friends. Do they have a makeup artist or do they have one they love? Getting a referral from salons and planners, make it easy for the client because they have a trusted source who has seen the makeup artist in action and the final result. There have been endless stories from clients who booked a makeup artist and ended up removing their makeup and redoing it themselves, or confessing to me they were embarrassed by how much they had on and have photos to prove it from a friend's wedding.
Then check -Do they have a website portfolio or an Instagram page to see their work on?
My professional portfolio site is www.lovelybyapril.com
Next - Is the makeup artist licensed as a cosmetologist or esthetician? In my state it's required. In other states it may not be, however there are a few things to consider if they are not, and you want to proceed. The best way of knowing the following is to get a consultation with them
1- Is their kit clean? Has the makeup been used on others and cleaned, or decanted for sanitation? If their kit and products are dirty and disorganized, run. After spending 13 years in the industry, I have seen a lot of ways to apply makeup. The artist using the back of the hand or straight from the products is not a clean way to work. Makeup artists of all calibers are guilty of it at times, but a good one will decant the product onto a pallet to keep the rest of the product sanitary for the next client, a really good one will have their makeup organized and ready to decant for a client or a job. Be sure they have a clean pallet they are working off of for your sake.
2- Are their tools clean and sanitized? If you get squeamish thinking about nail salons, then get more squeamish thinking about what is about to go on your face, and if that tool has been washed properly.
3- What products are they using? If you want the products to be natural be sure to check what the artist uses. There are makeup pallets for $13 on Amazon with 100 colors, but they are guaranteed to be filled with toxins and synthetics you don't want near your skin.
Finally - If needed book a consultation with the artist to get a chance to try out looks, or get a tutorial on how to do your makeup. Having tips from a pro, will leave you feeling confident the next time you grab your makeup bag.
For a professional licensed makeup artist to come on-site to do your makeup expect to pay $85-$120 minimum, per person or per hour. In a salon $75-85. It's a priceless experience to feel pretty, confident, and camera ready. If you have an event you know you need a makeup artist for, be sure to book well in advance, the best professionals book fast.
Have you had your makeup done by an artist you loved? Share your best or worst experience.