A makeup artist, also sometimes written make-up artist, is a professional who applies makeup and sometimes prosthetics to the face and body. An artist’s rates largely depend on his or her skill level, training and professional experience. Makeup artist rates also vary by location, industry and the specific job. Since many makeup artists are booked per day, they usually charge higher rates for long, complicated jobs.
One of the most important factors that affect makeup artist rates is the individual’s skill level. Skill level is usually determined by an artist’s portfolio, training and professional experience. A makeup artist who is just beginning his or her career will usually charge less than one with years of experience. As professionals build their reputation and portfolio, they can begin increasing their rates. Many makeup artists also increase their earning potential by continuing to take classes and learn new techniques throughout their career.
Location is another important factor that affects makeup artist rates. While this is not always true, makeup artists in large metropolitan areas tend to earn more than those working in smaller towns. The demand for makeup artists will significantly impact how much artists in the area can charge. In small towns, jobs are sometimes limited. Larger cities usually offer more job opportunities and the potential to earn higher wages.
Makeup artist rates also vary by industry. The highest paid artists are usually those who work on high-budget films, television shows and advertisements. Depending on the specific assignment, these jobs usually require makeup artists skilled in special effects (fx) makeup, fashion makeup and airbrush makeup. While the entertainment industry is generally the highest paying, makeup artists rates are lower for professionals who do theatrical makeup for smaller, low-budget productions. The rates one earns will depend on his or her employer’s budget as well as the length and complexity of the job.
The entertainment industry is not the only industry that employs makeup artists. These professionals work in a variety of industries. While many makeup artists apply cosmetics, others become educators and sales representatives. Many makeup artists also choose to specialize in certain areas of the field, like airbrushing, bridal makeup or fx makeup. These professionals commonly work in salons or spas as well as freelance.
Freelance makeup artists are typically paid by the day, while full-time workers might earn an annual salary or hourly wage. Most full-time employees are also given certain benefits including healthcare and paid time off. Freelance makeup artists are not given these benefits. The advantage of freelancing is that professionals can set their own makeup artist rates instead of having these rates dictated by an employer.