How to set up your own freelance makeup artist business?

How can you set up your own beauty business like me?
As a passionate make up artist, you have probably dreamed of running your very own beauty business. I am here to help you along the path to your dream career by offering a few useful tips on how to start up your own mobile beauty business.

Declare yourself self employed 
The first thing you need to do is register yourself as self employed. So before you get distracted by Facebook, games  or make up websites, go online to find the appropriate application form which will allow you to register for National insurance, tax and VAT. This will not only help you with your tax preparation, but also secure you as a legal business entity.

Market Research 
Researching the local competition is a great way to find out what other artists are charging and what services and treatments they are offering. Your aim is to offer something unique from other beauticians, making your business stand out from the others. Why not try advertising a loyalty card scheme where the customer receives a free treatment after 5 paid ones?

You will be travelling to various clients houses which means your equipment should be portable, light and easy for you to carry up a flight of stairs if necessary. There are specialist suppliers which sell portable beauty equipment such as fold up tables, portable make up brush bags and slimline mirrors.

Make your business stand out from the crowd by including unique make up treatments. As well as offering wedding and party make up services, why not offer something like a make up pamper party, or make up tutorials?

Social media 

You can boost your businesses publicity by creating your own Facebook page and Twitter account. Keep it updated with special offers, photographs and make up tips and always respond to a customer as soon as you can. Encourage your clients to leave comments and reviews on your Facebook page and offer special discounts to Facebook fans. Customers will like the fact they can quickly book an appointment with you by sending a message via Facebook, rather than having to call up.

152 thoughts on “How to set up your own freelance makeup artist business?

  1. I need a name for my makeup services, I hav been quiet about it for a while and it hasn’t been doin me good..pls help…I’m into bridal/photography/events/runway/miscalleneous makeup…I realy wana register it and get my contact card before the middle of july..pls help..or if u can give me tips on how to generate a name for would do..thanx emily. xoxo

    • Hey! This is so exciting, I would love to help you with naming your company. I work under my name Emily Hudspeth, well that was my name before I got married. That would be my first word of caution, only use your name if you think that will be your name forever! Now even though I have a new legal name, most people still know me as Emily Hudspeth because that is what I still work as.

      Have you thought about using your name or do you prefer to name your business something else? The first thing to think about is really get clear on who your ideal client is. You want to pick a name that speaks to them and that they identify with. You also want to choose something that will fit into all the markets you work with and be easy to remember and spell! I hope that helps!

      • Hi Emily, i found the advice u gave on creating a name for ur business very useful i’ve been tryin to carve a name for mine. I dream of being a freelance makeup artist and i have my brushes but honestly don’t know where to start; for example i don’t know what products2buy or in what colour pigments;moreover i don’t have enough capital to buy much products. Can u pls give me some advice on what basics to start with so i can avoid wasting what i have on unnecessary products? I will also appreciate regular tips from u on how to make my business a great success. I live in lagos, Nigeria.

        • First things first, get on the email list by putting your name and email in at the top of the page. I will send you my list of must have basics and also a list of all the professional discounts!

          • I would love to hear from you Emily.. Even I wanna start my new business, so I am eager for the tips from you. Looking 4ward to hear from you 🙂

          • Hi Emily
            I would love to hear from you, i want to start my business. please i need your advice and tips about the business, thank you God bless you.

          • Great to hear from you Masego. Follow the blog and look out for tips that I send only to those who are on the email list. Make sure to sign up!

          • Hello Emily,

            I’ve done some freelancing before but I would like to take it to the next level. I am requesting that an email of some suggestions on what to purchase. I’ve mostly worked with women that are from a medium complexion to a dark complexion, so I know what types of products to purchase. I know the technique is fairly the same on women with fair to medium skin tones but product wise I am somewhat at a loss (brands that work best, red and green color correctors verses orange color correctors and so forth). Any help in general is greatly appreciated.

            Thank you!


          • Hi Brandis, for the list of kit basics and pro discounts, put in your name and email at the top of the page and that will add you to the email list!

          • Hi Emily, I am eager to start my own business as a make up artist but I have the slightest clue how to start. Can you please help me. Thank u

          • Of course, I am happy to help with the list of kit basics and pro discounts. I can also blog on any topic that you may need help with because chances are that others are interested in the same.

          • I enjiyef your post.
            But I’mintoskincare.
            I amhavingproblemsonhowtosellect coloursfor mybizcardaswellaswellascoloursfor mydifferent products. E.gScrubs, cleansersetc.Thankyou.

          • hello emily, I love make up and i just started off as a make up artist and i found your advice very helpful . question I have is what products do you recommend I have in my kit and what brushes should i use on a budget?

          • Hi Emily I came across your post I’m looking to as a freelance makeup artist I don’t no where to start if you could please advise thank you so much for your time

      • Hi Emily I was wondering if you can give me a text please I really want to talk to you about this so I can understand more 214-395-4673

  2. Hi Emily,

    I’m so glad to read an article about you. I plan to open a makeup artist business. I’m a licensed Esthetician. I really love skin care and makeup.
    I plan to get my website and my business card done soon.
    I’m a little bit nervous because I have never done it before, what to expect and how to deal with customers.
    I also want to go to school again to continue my education for makeup artist.
    Do you know what kind of school or seminar I have to go to?
    I will be so glad if you are willing to help me.

    Thank You,

    • Hi Sri

      I am so excited for you to get your business started. You have a great foundation and I will love to help you launch it even further. I am in the process of adding some great information to the Fall workshop that I think you will love. Make sure to get on the email list (put in your name and email) to keep up to date on the latest and greatest developments.

      • Hello Emily, I want to start my business as a make up artist soon and I’ve been working on my website and business card. But I need to know the make up brands that are affordable and give good results. Also I will love to know necessary make up items to keep in mind and how to get them. Thanks

  3. Hello. Thanks for the information, it was really helpful. I would like to go into the makeup industry and with the little training I recieved from my home country. I would love to start something little. How would you suggest I do that. I am only 18 but I feel this can take me a long way but I would most definitely need your advice. Thanks

    • That is great! You are so ahead of the game! I love that you are looking for information to improve, learn and grow your business. Passion and education will get you so far. Keep it up! Make sure to get on the email list (put in your name and email under the logo) and I will be sending you info for the upcoming Fall workshop that is about to begin enrollment.

  4. Hello, I’m about starting a business, I’m currently in make up school and would commence as soon as I’m done. Would love to know that i can always get advice from you, thank you. Cheers!

    • That is great Aina! I am currently in the process of adding some great info to the Fall workshop. Make sure to get on the email list (put in your name and email under the logo) and look for emails about early enrollment. Space is limited and the VIPs on the email list will get the first shot.

  5. Good Afternoon,
    I am currently working on building my business as a makeup artist and I would like to know do you have any suggestions as to how to keep gaining clients and what is the best way to reach to new clients. I have some regulars and I offer discounts to there friends, but I would like new clients as well. I have business cards and flyers, along with a Facebook fan page, but do you suggest anything else??? Also, I am about to enter a school to gain more skills and learn more about the business side of makeup. I was wondering, in your opinion, should I continue to work at a cosmetic counter until I gain more clients or just step out of faith?

    • Hey Sonya!
      Great questions. I think the first step is to get REALLY clear on who your ideal client is. Once you know who that person is, you can really focus in on how to target them and get referrals to grow that client base even further. I can help you get clear on this and other aspects of growing your business. The fall workshop starts September 16th, let me know if you would like to register. You can take advantage of the payment plan options now. Those are available for another week or so!

  6. hello I would like to go into the makeup industry and with the little training I recieved from my home country ia.i am still traing and I would love to start something little. How would you suggest I do that. I am 22 but I feel this can take me a long way but I would most definitely need your advice. Thanks

    • Starting young in this industry is a definite advantage for sure! Get as much experience as possible thru practicing and assisting experienced artists.

  7. Hi Emily!
    I would like to go into the makeup industry. I would love to start something from a little, like start from freelance on weekends. I’m new in this industry. How would you suggest I do that. I am only 20 but I feel this can take me a long way but I would most definitely need your advice. I have many things to learn and improve. Hope you can help me.

  8. Hi.
    Pls I want to go into make up and av gotten a little idea which I think should start me up, though I still want to develop my self pls I need ur advice on what to do how to go about it I leave in CALABAR CROSS RIVER STATE NIGERIA.

    • Hey Crystal– Make sure to sign up for the email list by putting in your name and email on the page under the logo. I will send you my list of must have basics and the professional discounts you can apply for. That is where you can start, then I can send you more follow up information too!

  9. Hi emily, Please can you suggest a name for me, i’m a new make-up artist and i don’t have an idea to call my make-up enterprise.. I’ll be dealing with brides,models etc more like a free lance make-up artist.. Please if there’s any name you can suggest for me,because i’m looking at making my own make-up brand in the future,so i need a name i can easily abbreviate..thank you very much.

  10. I am so glad that I have found your site. I have been wanting to start freelancing part time for a while now. I know how to apply makeup, but do I need to go to a school first? I hear a lot of MUA’s never went to school. Also when it come to products I do not know where to start in building my kit. PLEASE HELP!!

    • Hey Mia! Thanks for dropping in. I see that you recently added to our email list. I will be sending you my list of basics for your kit and also a list of pro discounts you can apply for. I hope that helps!

      • Hey ..great to read all ur posts..iam an upcoming makeup artist..wanted to know a few things about how to promote oneself as well about the best professional makeup stuff .. would like to know which is the beat makeup school for short term courses..thanks dear

  11. Hello, I have been a cosmetologist for 7 years, ive been doing hair but my love is for makeup so I’m transitioning into that. I have a name, a targeted client base and its original I KNOW it would do great as long as its done correctly. What do I need to do now? Business cards, marketing, but is there any legalities to properly cover. The independent contractor is the same for hair. What is my next step?

    • Hey! You are on the right track! If you are an established stylist and know you your target client is, you just have to go out there and get them! Its great that you are already involved in the industry. Use your connections there to get into doing more makeup. Start by making people aware that you are doing makeup now. Get some business cards, work on your portfolio, set up a website and/or blog, etc. Do you have your LLC to set yourself up as a business? Next up is marketing yourself and creating your brand.

  12. Hey…I’m a freelance makeup artist and being out of makeup school for almost a year now..but its pretty hard getting clients as there are loads of muas in nigeria…being thinking of doin someform of publicity but I really do need ideas of what I can’t do to get my stuff out there…thanks you in advance

    • If you are looking to get your name out online, you can start by blogging regularly. That builds SEO to your website and people can find you more easily online that way. You should also get to know people in person. Reach out to people who you would like to work with, photographers, modeling agencies, etc and ask if you can come by an introduce yourself. Start by asking the people who you want to work with, what you can do for them. That goes much further than asking what they can do for you.

  13. Hi Emily…I’m a makeup artist from Nigeria and iv being out of the makeup school from almost a year and iv done just 3 job..I will like to get my face and what i do out there but I don’t know how to go about it and I need Ideas.i was thinkn of giving freemakeovers at fairs nd giving out my flier nd complementary’s so hard because a lot of people here are makeup artists ..

    • Giving away free services is not the most ideal way to get clients. Once you do it for free, they almost never want to pay you. Have you reached out to other makeup artists who are working and makeup money? I suggest you offer to apprentice and assist them, you can learn alot from a more experienced artist. What have you done to network and get your name out there, both online and in person? Perhaps find a good hairstylist who is going after the same target market that you are and create a package deal to cross promote each other?

  14. Hi I have have my hair dressing licenes for 5 yrs but but working for fast food. I really know I can make it I wanna fo hair snd make up. I already came up with a name.I also know a fashion designer. How do I start???

    • Hey Danielle! Sounds like you already started by getting your license. Now its time to put it to work and get some experience. Having a license gives you the ability to work in a salon under seasoned pros. That is the best place to learn!

  15. Hi Emily, I have found your page very interesting. I am new to all this but would love to be a professional makeup artist but I just don’t know where to start… what makeup course to take, what products to use, etc.. could you please advise which is best? thank you

    • Hey Toni! All of these questions are easier to answer once you know who your target client is. That is the first step in figuring out everything from what type of products to buy for your kit and how to market yourself so clients can find you.

  16. Hi Emily, i really loved your recommendations, I´m from México, so maybe my english is not that good LOL. I´m trying to get in the business, i do my makeup pretty cool and all the people are usually asking me who did my makeup, so i guess is time for me to start my own freelance business.

    I know how to apply every single thing on me, but i dont know how to start on other’s people face LOL. I mean .. how many kinds of fundation do i have to buy to match all my future clients solor skin? and what color? .. (I’m a MAC fan) … what are the must have basics to start?

    • Hi Ale! Good question. You can start by getting clear on who your target client would be and get a range of foundations (color match and coverage) that fit for that type of client. Then start practicing on your friends and family to sharpen your skills.

  17. I have worked as a Business Manager in Cosmetics for 15 years now! I do not have a Cosmetology or aesthetician License! Can I start my own Freelance makeup artistry business without those License? If so? What steps do I need to take to get started?

    • Hey Victoria
      Sounds like you have some good experience in the business and beauty industry. You don’t need a cosmetology license to be a freelance artist. You do need experience and there is so much you can teach yourself.

  18. Hey, I’m from Trinidad & Tobago. Really determined to start my own make-up business asap. I love all forms of art, especially doing make up. Please send me a beginner’s list of must haves. Looking forward to your advice. You’re doing a wonderful thing with this site!!

  19. Hey Emily,
    I am an aspiring make-up artist and I would like to know what the basic brushes to have are, and what are some ways to get to know the competition in my area so that I can offer services that make me stand out. Thanks! I look forward to hearing from you.

  20. Hello Emily,

    I am so glad I found your site. I was beginning to get so discouraged, I realized makeup is my passion two and a half years after I left New York. Now I live in Raleigh, NC where there are no classes and the network of pro artists are small. Right now I am working on being self-taught and could use any information you have available. I’m struggling with coming up with a name as well, I need to do this ASAP since I am ordering custom made bags for my business.

  21. Hello Emily, am a Nigerian girl and I want to start my makeup buisness which will later include manicure,pedicure,skin care and hair making…but I want to to help me with tips and I don’t know what name I can use for ma business,I want a name that is catchy,attractive and simple,please help me…am in a kind of environment where people don’t really appreciate makeups but am through in ma makeup school.looking forward to hearing from you,thanks

  22. Hey i just wanted to know if i need a license to be a makeup artist or need a license to apply any makeup on a person i have been putting makeup on people for 5 year’s and i am 21 year’s i love makeup so much specially when i see the shock an happy face’s i have written my own contract an printed it an review that contract with the people that i apply makeup on i live in hilo hawaii idk if need a license to even apply makeup on people….

    • Hi Roselyn, That is a great question. Whether or not you need to be licensed depends on what state you live in. Look up the rules and regulations for the state board of cosmetology to find out the current rules.

  23. HI emily so ive been a freelance makeup artist for over 6 years now.. I moved to GA bout a year now and just dont know how to get my name known here.. I lived in NY b4 and it was going great for me I had my clients worked on various weddings proms etc.. But here i have come to find it hard to get out there.. right now im renting a room at a salon but the traffic that goes there dont always get their makeup done so that sucks.. I would just like a couple of marketing tips that can help me.. Oh i made flyers which i have taken around and business cards as a way to help but i find that not even with that is helping..Im very talented and know I can get far just that im finding it quite hard to do so here. 🙁

    • Hey Elizabeth. Relocating can be tough! I have done it 4 times and its never easy. I would be happy to help you. If you are interested in working with me one on one or being a part of the next workshop, please email me and I will get you the info on how to apply!

  24. Hi,

    May you please send me a list of items I will need as a beginner in the industry. I have already made the mistake of offering free services to get publicity and it ended up being a waste of time.

    I did a makeup artist course and makeup is my passion. I really want to get into the industry freelance and this time round I wan to do it right.

  25. i want to start up my own makeup business by produce my own makeup and skincare using my name.pls can you help me with the contract

    • That is awesome! Congratulations. I am not a legal professional so I do not consult on anything related to legally binding contracts. I recommend finding someone who specializes in this type of legal work.

  26. Hi,
    I am planing to start to work like mobile Professional make-up artist/hairstylist. Would like to ask, what way to start is the best?
    I don’t have clientele yet, just because I am from foreign country came here not that long time ago.
    How I already know, I have to register like self-employed. Could I ask about taxes? and NI? How much % from the profit I have to pay?
    What if I will not find a client for few weeks? How much I have to pay then ?
    Thank you very much.
    Best regards, Inga

    • Start by assisting and experience artist or getting some experience working in cosmetics, maybe in retail. The products you will need to start your kit will be determined by the type of client and work you are doing. Use the list of professional discounts that I sent you when you signed up for the email list to help save some money when purchasing what you need.

  27. Hi! I’ve already signed up for the email list! I’m in school now and want to work on establishing the foundation of my business at the same time so that when prom season hits (right around the time I will finish) I can hit the ground running. I saw that you mentioned things like National Insurance, tax and VAT… what exactly are those things? I know I needed to get my business name registered and possibly get a tax ID if i chose to become an LLC but what other legal things might I be missing?

  28. hello there Ms.Emily! I am from Philippines and i just finished my course in basic cosmetology particularly in make-up.i wanted to be a freelance make-up artist the soonest possible but i’m kinda little nervous if i could do my job well…pls help me boost my confidence and it would be a big help if you could give me some more tips and advice….thank you so much i hope to here from you…God bless!

  29. Hi Emily, I just signed up, am almost loosing hope, am a freelance makeup artist and I started a makeup training school 6months ago but the responses are not encouraging, please I need your advice on how to generate the needed traffic to the makeup school and generally step up my game. Looking forward to hearing from you soonest.

    • I charge for trials and I would highly recommend that you do too. You are spending a lot of time with the bride to be during the trial, as well as using a lot of (very expensive) products. A trial is a service, just like the event day and you should charge accordingly. Some people give a higher price for the bride, maybe double, and then say the trial is included. Its not that they aren’t charging for the trial. Lumping both services in the higher price point, is a way of making sure that both get booked. Whether you choose to bundle these services or offer them a la carte, you should charge for them based on what your time and expertise are worth.

  30. hi Emily
    i just graduated as a beauty specialist and one of the things i love doing is make up,so i want to start my own business as a makeup artist freelancer and i dont know where do i start or how do i start for that matter please help me by advising or giving me a few tips on how i can go about into getting this idea of mine of the ground

  31. hello emily ,i just need some nice description about makeup to write on my web site i finished my study from beauty school i want to make my own business.i just need some attractive description about makeup to make people attract to my side.i saw ur website and its small request ,do u like to help in me,being a good makeup artist.

  32. Great tips! I am looking into becoming a freelance makeup artist. (hense why I ended up on this page lol) If you could answer a couple questions for me? 1) Is it NEEDED to have a makeup artist diploma to start? I do eventually want to go to school and get my diploma, but I just finished a crappy medical journey with a tumor, leaving me unable to work and without money. :/ But I want to start getting myself out there now…
    2) I signed up for the email list, but could you tell me the best way to get professional brushes? I have my own, but they are from ebay and I am not sure I would want to use them on clients, not to mention its not a full set. Do you know of any companies that help out new makeup artists?

    • Hi Brianna, welcome to the list! Check out Crown Brushes, they are really great, affordable, professional brushes that are great to start your kit with.

  33. Hi, I’m Katie and I’m 17 years old, leaving college in May. I’ve loved makeup since I was just 13 and I’ve been using it ever since, as I’m 17 now I’ve gained a lot of experience from practice and well to be honest I started using makeup as I suffered from very bad acne at that age, so along the way Ive also learned multiple ways of skin care, but anyway- I’ve decided not to go to university, or atleast until I find no other options.. I want to leave college and try to get out there, I’d like to have a business where I can design my own makeup and create a website, I also would like to be a makeup artist within the media or even just client based, but a problem I’ve been itching at the past month is I literally have absolutely no idea where to start, I made an instagram page ( which is another side to my interest in makeup as this is for my creative eye makeup work, I gained just 17 followers but I decided I’d like to get moving a bit more, as that is just for perhaps showing others what I can do, as I’m only 17 I know that the initial response would be to take some sort of makeup course or training but I genuinely don’t feel like I need this, I feel comfortable with what I can do, I feel as though I have skills in all makeup aspects of the face, however there’s so many things about me that I feel are holding me back, obviously I’m very young and only turn 18 this June but I also am very different to most people of my age, apart from my small instagram account I don’t use any social networking websites, I don’t have even one person that I can call a friend, I don’t really exist to anybody other than my family and boyfriend so I feel like I have nobody to help me with what I want to do, my family just sees makeup as makeup where I see it as my life career, but I like to see the positives in everything so living on the outside of today’s society I feel like I have so much time to put into this, I just really need a little help with where I should start here because I really am stuck

    • HI Katie, congratulations on getting an early start and knowing what you want to do at such a young age. That is a gift! Right now, keep working on your talent and set the foundation, your business will grow and follow.

  34. Hi Emily,

    I have a few mentioned we need to declare ourselves as “self employed” what if I want to start off working weekends only and have another full time job? I’m very confused about all the legal parts of freelancing. Does a freelance business fall under a LLC? Do I need insurance? When I start my website do I need a business license online as well just to advertise myself? Please help! Thanks

    • Hi Cintya, I cannot give you legal or financial advice since that is not my area of expertise. I can give you tips on how to build your business and market yourself as a makeup artist but you need to consult an attorney for legal questions.

  35. Hi Emily,
    Really want to start my own freelance business, can you please send me a list of necessary things needed to start.

  36. Hello Emily,
    I have been doing make up since I was 15 and now just getting back into it because I really love it kinda like my calling. Even though I am freelancing without an license I have worked with models on shoots and clients for events. I wanted to know should I take a classes to further my makeup education even tho I taught myself and learned techniques throughout the years. Or should I get a license so I could up business and clientele?

    • You can either take classes or continue to self teach, as long as you are learning! Do what is best for your market and clientele and get better in the best way you can. You need to look into your states rules thru State Board of Cosmetology on what types of license are required to work as a makeup artist. Specifically if you also do hair! The license is not always required but never hurts.

  37. Hi Emily, I am so excited after reading all these comments and seeing your response, I am also starting up an official freelance makeup business and need more advice on how to budget, market etc. If you can please come contact with me if possible I will really appreciate it. I have done about 4 weddings already and always got good feed back have great experience and every day I learn something new but now I finally made a decision to start an actual registered business as a Self-Employed professional! Looking forward to your feedback and may you have a blessed day! Luscious Lulls

  38. Hi! I am trying to start my own freelance kit, but don’t want to spend a huge amount of money! First things first, I need to find a decent-priced makeup train/travel case. The, if you could, tell me the basic for what to have in your freelance makeup kit. Like must-have brushes, products, and tools. Please keep in mind I want good quality, but don’t want to waste millions of dollars. Thank you, I really appreciate it!


    • Hi Ady, welcome to our little community! Make sure to sign up for the email list and I will send you a list of must haves, the pro discounts and how to sign up for them, along with a few other updates here and there.

  39. Hi. I am currently in the university. I want to start up an artistes and models make up business but i don’t have any idea about it though. I am into events so i want to add this to it and get people jobs to do. Please how do i go about this? #Bless

  40. I’m staring out as a makeup artist and trying t find that perfect name has been extremely difficult. My name is Jade. Do you have any suggestions?

    • Jade, I would recommend really thinking about who your ideal client is and what type of business you would like to start. That will help you find a name that works for you.

  41. Hi 🙂 could you please email me your list of must haves for start-up? I enjoyed your page and appreciate all of your advice!

    • Hi Tiffany, to get the list of kit basics and pro discounts, put in your name and email at the top of the page and that will add you to the email list!

  42. Hello Emily, Great review on what you said. i need names of my makeup business badly. i have some but not sure if its good. im not doing it alone. my friend and i are doing it. her name is Nini. the names are: 1. Ray Ray beauty 2. Touch of beauty 3. Belleza 4. Lady Belleza. please suggest thank you.

  43. Hello There. I discovered your weblog using msn. This
    is a very neatly written article. I’ll be sure too bookmark it and return to learn extra of your helpful
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  44. hi there as other peoples i m a new artist just recently made portfolio don’t no what to do and how to start with and also stuck to finding a right business name can u plz help me.

  45. Hi Emily… I’m Winnie, new in the business because I just concluded classes on make-over. Pls I would like to know about the discounted make-up product,various shades of powder both in concealer, foundation and loosed powder that could be used on client. Secondly wish if from what I have as my name u can help give me a name for the said business though I’ve some but would appreciate u making out one or two names out of it… Lastly I will appreciate if u will give me the leavrage to come for ur advice from time to time. Tnx much.

    • Congrats on completing your class and welcome to the business, Winnie. Make sure to get on the email list so you can have updates delivered to your inbox.

  46. Hi Emily,

    I have been trying to launch my makeup business for quite sometime now. I have pretty much everything I need; tools, contacts, a good portfolio, a brand name, a website, Facebook page, etc. But I’m still finding it difficult to launch my business properly. I don’t know if its because the market now its overcrowded or I’m just not standing out enough. I will be re-launching my brand next year and I have about $2k in capital. I do not wish to waste it so I’m wondering if you could advise me on what else should I invest in?

    Thank you so much!

    • Hi Irma, it is great that you have some capital to work with and it sounds like you have some experience too. Before you invest any money, I would recommend really brainstorming and figuring out what exactly you want to be doing, and you exactly you will be marketing too. That will help you streamline costs and work efficiently.

  47. I am a new free lance hair and makeup artist. I just graduated this sept. I wanna start a business but I dont really have an idea how to start one. Can you help and guide me how? Thank you so much.

    • Congratulations! I am happy to help! Let me know what specific areas you are struggling with and I will design some posts to help you. I am sure someone else is having the same issues.

  48. Hi Emily, I’m currently in make up school and would commence as soon as I’m done. I dream of being a big makeup artist and having a beauty line. I want to start buying things gradually, so What products should I buy and in what colour pigments; moreover i don’t have enough capital to buy much products. Can u pls give me some advice on what basics to start with so i can avoid wasting what i have on unnecessary products? I will also appreciate regular tips from u on how to make my business a great success. I live in Nigeria.

    • Jane, congrats on makeup school! I love that you have such a clear dream and vision for yourself, that is awesome. I always tell people that they should consider their ideal client and the type of work they do before investing in products. I don’t recommend specific brands because what I use in my kit may not be the perfect product that would work for YOUR client. There are so many choices out there so have fun with the trial and error part of finding what works for you. Good luck!

  49. Some good advice! I would also advise all aspiring business owners to start taking a completely professional approach to all communications, both written and spoken. There are quite a few talented ladies that have posted before me, that have not bothered to spell-check their posts or use proper grammar. This is a common mistake and easily avoided.

    Good use of grammar is a habit that is easy to lose, if one is careless. Every post on FB or Google, every blogpost, every letter to a friend, should be as clean and perfect as a high gloss resume going out to a Fortune 500 company. Potential clients see more than just what you intend them to see, and you never know who will come upon a poorly worded or spell-checked post and decide to go with another provider whose image and promotional materials were more sleek and well done.

    Good use of language and proper punctuation are an investment in your image. Bad grammar detracts from your professional reputation, thoughtless posts can do great damage. There are plenty of quick grammar fix books in every public library; everyone needs a brush-up occasionally, and all of my writer friends keep a grammar guide handy while they work, as do I.

    Take the extra few seconds of time now, and you won’t lose the respect of potential business contacts later. Peace, Mari

    • Preach, mari! I have been trying to think of a tactful way to write a post on this very subject. Ladies (and gents) when I get an email or comment from you asking me to plz hlp u in biz….I want either ignore you or tell you that my first tip is for you to learn and use proper grammar.

  50. Hi
    Emily.I’m Pamela and I live in China.I’m intending on starting online make up lessons but don’t know where to begin.I see a lot of them online and I’m aspiring to be a make up artist.Don’t know if your company does online courses .and what are the requirements.I really want to but don’t know where to begin.Im looking forward to read from you.Thanks.

    • Hi Pamela, thanks for contacting me. I am currently on hold for online courses. I am in the process of turning the program into a series of digital downloads that you will make the content easier for more people worldwide to access and more affordable too! The goal is to have this ready by the beginning of the year.

  51. Hi, Emily! I want to start-up as a makeup freelancer pretty soon. Please, I need you to give me details on the type of products/cosmetics to buy(ranging from light-skinned to dark-skinned clients). I would love the affordable ones as I have just little amount to start up. And also, where can I get them to buy at affordable prices, including the professional make-up brushes. I reside in PortHarcourt, Nigeria. Please, reply as soon as possible because I don’t want to spend what I’ve saved up. Thank you.

    • Hi Titi, make sure to sign up for the email list and I will send over the list of products (not specifically brands) but products you need to get started.

  52. Pingback: How To Apply Makeup Neatly |

  53. Hi Emily!
    This is so awesome!! One of my biggest passion since i was younger was to be a makeup artist/hair stylist for Brides / bridal industry. I have recently been very motivated and decided to pursue this dream of mine. Do you have any tips or advice on what i should do? Also, i have been debating on what brand of foundation and powder that is good yet affordable for someone who is a beginner like i am? Thank you so much!

  54. Hi Emily,

    I love your information. Well i have a huge passion for make-up and i want to back-up my education by going into the make up buisness, i am not really good in make up but i pleaded with my parents to put me in a make-up school, they declined my request owing to the fact that i am still in school, they agreed on a condition i finish school. I thought about it and finally decided i have to start early, can’t wait till after school,but doing it, i have to go ahead on my own without the help of my parents. Please can you advise me and give me info on how to go about it on my own.And also some relevant make-up tips. I am 17years old.åvp

    • Hey! Congrats on finding your passion so early. The good news is that you have lots of time to get it all figured out. Make sure to be on the email list (subscribe) so I can send you updates. Check the blog and email for the latest tips. Thanks!

  55. Hi Emily! I’m wanting to start my own business doing freelance makeup. I don’t have qualifications in makeup artistry, I’m looking into a few courses that last a few days with a certificate at the end, to have atleast that to stand by me. I’m good at what I do, but I don’t know where to start! Like what would be a good brand to use that would be affordable, I love Mac but I don’t have the cash to be buying like 10 different shades of foundations and concealers! If you have the time I would greatly appreciate some advice if you could email me please! Thanks so much x

  56. Hi ! My name is Christina and I wanna start my freelance makeup business but I have no idea where to start . I love makeup and doing makeup on my self and others right now I do makeup for close friends but I’m wanting to go further . What do you suggest my first step should be ? I don’t have a lot of makeup I work with what I have . do I need a license to be a freelance makeup artist. I would love for you to check out my Instagram page and tell me what you think @ makeup_hair_bychristina .

    • Hi Maria–You have a lot of options of “first steps” but one is to learn as much about the industry as possible. I hope this blog, the guides in the shop section and the resources page are helpful. Make sure to follow us on Instagram and Join the email list for updates and I can help as much as possible.

  57. Hello love i really would love to pick your brain…. I am a makeup artist already and doing well but would love to take it to the next Leave if u can please email Me at i have a few questions. Thank you for all your help.

  58. Hi Maria, my name is Tabie and i need your assistance on how to start my own business a freelance makeup artist, i love making people look and feel good about themself, i love makeup and i also do makeup to my close friends and my collegues , i have the name of my business,please check True Beauty Revolution ( TBR) i also work fo the company that sells makeup and i attend Makeup Seminar’s to learn moreyour, Your assistance and your advice will be highly appreciated.

  59. Hi emily, I need u to guide me on how to be successful on makeup business, have been in this field 4 2years but i av not done any job. Pls help me

  60. Hi emily am 4rm lagos Nigeria, am a makeup artist and am aspiring to be great in this job, but d problem is i don’t have money and am not from a rich home that makes it worst cause i don’t have friend and i av not gotten any client that can connect me, moreover i need to improve in my skills. Pls advice me on what to do. Email me @

  61. Hi Emily! My name is Mariah! I am in need of your advice for jump starting my freelance career in the industry. I actually would appreciate it if you could respond to me via email. Thank you!

  62. Hi Emily!

    I have found your article very helpful & loved getting a closer insight on the business aspect of this industry. You can have all of the talent in the world, but if you do not represent yourself & market yourself correctly that talent could go unnoticed.

    With that being said, I have been trying to widen my knowledge on the business aspect and would love to speak with you in greater detail about this side of the industry. I am curious about all of the “minor” details that people typically tend to overlook.

    I look forward to speaking with you soon!

    Again, thank you so much! (:


    Kenzey XOXO

  63. Hi Emily! My name is Ashley and would love advice on how to start up my own freelance career in makeup artistry! Please send me some tips and tricks on how to start to my email address.

    I am currently working at Clinique and know all about building relationships with my clients and looking into working for myself.

    Cant wait to hear from you!!

  64. I would love more about how to get my name out there.I’m a wedding makeup artist and have sum weddings but would like to be busy more. Please let me know what you thing I would do as far as advertising or discounts to get more weddings.
    Thanks Gwen

  65. Dear Emily.
    I would like to start my own business. Could you please give me some advice? I would like to ask you a few questions via email. Thank you in advance:)

  66. Hi Emily, I too would like for you to advise me on the basics of my freelancing beauty business please. I have the same problem as Dami from Nigeria.

  67. hy Emily,
    wana venture into makeup industry but dnt know how to go about it…. besides am knda having doubt as to whether it would wotk out or not…. looking forward to hearing from you

  68. Hi Emily,

    Thank you for creating this post! I’am actually starting my own hair and make-up services. It would be great if you can give me some points on how to market this kind of service especially online, what products are good to use based on your experience and what tool/product is a must have.

    Your response to this will be highly appreciated and hope to hear more from you!


  69. HI Emily! I have been doing freelance make up for a while but i feel kind of stuck…I have the same clients and I would like to get a little more busy. Can you help me with a few tips and ideas on how to grow my business and get more clients. I heard about Wedding websites but I don’t know how to become a vendor for them as they all ask for fees! is this how it works? also I am thinking about going to hair School as I believe the combo will be better for my business.
    Thank you!

  70. Hi Emily, thank you for the tips, I found it very useful, resourceful and help me a lot to think further for make up services business. I just Certified from one of Local Make Up Artist School here in Sabah, Malaysia. I want to further my knowledge maybe in Business Make Up services however I dont know where I Should Start and with what..

  71. Hi, Emily,

    Love your post! Could you please email me your list of must haves for start-up? Maybe you have some useful sites with make-up lessons? Do you think its necessary to go and stay in make up school in US or if i have a lot of self experience, i can just use my portfolio to find a job?

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