By Appointment Only


605 Second Street
Suite #207
Snohomish, WA 98290
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  • Andrea Yasmeen

What to Look for When Hiring a Professional Makeup Artist

In addition to the last post where I explained why you should hire a professional makeup artist and not Becky from down the street, let's talk about who you are hiring. Don't be fooled by the "professional certified makeup artist", "certified makeup artist" and other titles some people have given themselves. There is no such thing and what I mean by that is that it's not a requirement in most places to have any licensing or certification to do makeup. I myself have a "certificate", because early on I thought I needed one to look like I had my ish together, but how did I get it? I went to a class that was a few hours long, was given a few shitty mass produced, wholesale makeup to use and taught everything I already knew how to do. I didn't learn anything. The instructor literally talked about herself for the first hour and how she was a model and now an artist and works NYFW and works with celebrities, but there was no proof of that. She didn't know how to do makeup well and it showed when she demoed.

I felt like I had spent $250 on a piece of paper and guess what? It meant NOTHING. I will say there are some classes that are a few days long that really dive into makeup techniques and those are great to up your skill but just know that "certified" doesn't make you a professional artist.

What should you be looking for? Let's dive in.

Professional Website -

Not "", not "", NOT a Facebook page only.

A professional artist should have a professional website. Some artists simply put a landing page which is just one page with some info on it and some, like myself have multiple pages with info and a portfolio for potential clients to look at and see things we've done.

People -

By that I mean, you should be seeing makeup on OTHER people. I see a lot of, "I'm a makeup artist" posts on social media and then it's all photos of the looks they do on themselves. While sometimes they look great, not everyone will look good when you put that same look on another face. That's why when you are looking at artist's portfolios, you need to look at their photos and be seeing other people with makeup on, not just them. Also, keep in mind you and your wedding party. Maybe you have a mixture of ethnicities in your wedding party, but is this artist able to work on all shades? Do maybe the women who are darker skinned in their photos look ashy? I mean, these are real things to consider. I've worked a wedding where someone has shown up and not known what to even do with someone who was darker skinned. I've heard of people hiring an artist and having their bridesmaid bring their own foundation because they don't have their shade. ABSOLUTELY NOT. That's a red flag. PLEASE think about your wedding party.

Kit - Speaking of someone asking their client or wedding party to bring their own foundation, you should NOT be bringing your own foundation. I REPEAT for the ones in the back, you should NOT be bringing your own foundation. A professional artist will have a fully stocked kit ready to take on the day. If someone is asking you to bring your own, walk away. Also, if that person has only their shades of foundation....RUN. We do NOT mix personal and professional products, because first off, it's gross and second that is a sure way to cross-contaminate your kit. A professional artist should have a shade for everyone or a way to create a shade for everyone.

There should be disposables, alcohol, brush cleaner, etc.

Hygiene -

Let's continue this topic now that I've mentioned cross-contamination. A professional DOES NOT blow on your lashes to dry them. A professional DOES NOT use the mascara wand that comes in the mascara tube (disposables need to be used. A new one for each use.) A professional sanitizes their hands before touching your face. A professional either uses a new set of brushes on each person or disinfects between.

A professional NEVER dips a brush or finger into a cream product. (You should see a palette and spatula in their set up)

Licensing - I know, "but Andrea, you said you don't need a license to do makeup". What I meant is a makeup artist doesn't need a cosmetology or esthetics license to apply makeup. What they do need is insurance, a business license and possibly a service license to be able to travel to clients. Don't have those? Probably doing it under the table. I'm not trying to ruin anyone's hustle, but when an artist takes these steps, they're showing that they take their business seriously.

Contracts -

So many couples are taken back by a vendor mentioning a contract, but think about this. Let's put it into a scenario and maybe it will be clearer. Say you want to book someone and they say, "Great! I'm available on your date, it's just a $50 deposit to book". You might think, "GREAT! That was super easy". Now let's fast forward to the week of your wedding. Maybe you haven't heard from them in a while, maybe you have and you did a trial. You email them a few days before just to give them final details on where to go or something and they tell you, "Oh sorry, I must have forgotten to tell you but I can't do your makeup anymore". How pissed are you? I'd be livid. At that point, what are you going to do? Artists book up really quickly, sometimes up to a year in advance, so you are now stuck trying to find whoever you can to do your makeup or you're stuck doing it yourself. Yea, you're mad but what can you do? Nothing.

Contracts not only keep you accountable for payment BUT they keep the artist accountable as well. If they can't make it, usually with a contract, they would be responsible for finding a replacement. If they cancel with no replacement, they would be responsible for refunding any remaining balance that was given, etc. Everyone's contract is different, but the main takeaway is that without a contract, you are left vulnerable. It may seem like a pain to have to fill out a contract and pay a retainer to book, but just know you are booking with someone who values your business and respects your time.

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