Career Paths in Makeup Artistry Fashion Makeup Artist

Average potential earning | $60K/year

In-demand Careers in Makeup Artistry

The career path for professional makeup artistry is incredibly versatile. The options are endless when you have the right skills and training. From editorial, film & TV, fashion, theatre, special effects, or prosthetics design – you can make your mark anywhere! And once you do, you might even consider building your brand.


  • Build your portfolio: sometimes, this might mean unpaid work and volunteering, but it’s all for a higher purpose. And practice makes perfect!
  • NETWORK: network, network, network. Get out there and meet people. You never know who will remember you and hire you for a big job!
  • Be professional: as always, be respectful on any job, whether it’s paid or unpaid. Your reputation precedes you. 
  • Don’t be afraid to ask questions.
  • Be yourself: always strive to be your natural, creative, and authentic self!

A makeup artist working in the fashion world is essential to communicating style and image. Whether creating classic or avant-garde looks for a magazine shoot or runway or working directly with clients as a freelance or studio-based artist, the modern fashion makeup artist uses various techniques to create innovative artforms. A fashion makeup artist might find themselves adorning runway models with jewels along their lash lines, dabbing on neon green eyeshadow, and applying precisionist matte lipstick or helping a bride look her best on a very special day.

The job of a fashion and beauty makeup artist takes training and hard work. The first step in this journey is an education in makeup artistry from a reputable school like CMU. Here, you will learn the knowledge and skills required in today’s makeup industry. With help from industry experts, veterans, and professionals, you’ll learn the tricks of the trade, best practices, and current trends.

Starting out as a professional makeup artist takes persistence, determination and time to build your experience and portfolio. Most artists begin their careers by providing their services for free or payment-in-kind. You can leverage these experiences and build relationships with veteran artists who act as mentors and cheerleaders to young up-and-comers. Remember that it is a marathon, not a sprint.

Like many jobs in the beauty and entertainment industries, it is not all glitz and glamour. Days can be long and schedules unpredictable at times, but if you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life.

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