How to Become a Makeup Artist for TV

Let’s face it – the glitz and glam of TV are compelling to many of us. Whether you’ve dreamt of starring in a show or working behind the scenes, it’s only natural to want to be a part of the magic that happens on-screen. As an aspiring TV makeup artist, you’re inspired to help create that visual magic, but you might also be unsure of how to achieve your goals. Here, the beauty experts at Bellus Academy shed some light on the process, providing tips along the way so you can mold yourself into a stellar TV makeup artist candidate.

Build Up Your Resume and Portfolio

Although many of us wish we could fast-track right to our dream jobs, it often takes a bit of time to work our way up. The path to being a TV makeup artist is no exception – if you want to earn a lucrative position like this, you’ll need to have the resume and portfolio to back yourself up. So be sure to dedicate a substantial amount of time to gaining field experience, whether you work in a salon or spa or as a freelance makeup artist. The more diversified your skillset and the more show-stopping your portfolio, the more likely you’ll be to realize a creative director’s vision when you’re on a TV set.

Always Read the Script

Whether you’ve landed your first job as a TV makeup artist or you’re still refining your craft, it’s always important to read scripts. This might mean reading the script to the show you’re working on or looking up publicly available scripts online, paying special attention to shows that have won awards for makeup or special effects. By familiarizing yourself with the tone of each script and gaining a sense of the director’s and screenwriter’s shared vision, you’ll become more able to serve future shows with your makeup skills.

Refine Your Listening Skills

If you’re determined to be a TV makeup artist, you must listen to and follow directions without missing a beat. While this may sound easy to do, realizing a director’s vision can become tricky when your client, an actor or actress, also wants you to realize theirs.

Further, when makeup touchups are called for on a set, TV makeup artists can sometimes double as off-stage confidants. If an actor is feeling tired, frustrated, or simply in need of a chat, you might become the shoulder they lean on while you work. In cases like these, it pays to be a good listener in a field where networking and positive impressions are so important.

Attend Cosmetology School

Although not every TV makeup artist attends cosmetology school, institutions like Bellus Academy can equip students with the breadth of makeup knowledge that aspiring creators need to earn their dream jobs. What’s more, they can also provide business insights and teach future makeup artists how to market themselves in the TV industry, where self-advocacy is just as important as your makeup skills.

Makeup artistry is all about self-expression, which is why it’s so important to learn basic color theory, proper application techniques, and other critical makeup principles. With a deeper understanding of these basics, students can realize their visions by thinking outside the box on fast-paced, high-pressure sets. To learn more about the Makeup Artistry program at Bellus Academy and how it can prepare you for a future in TV, contact a member of our admissions team at 858-375-6247.

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