Becoming A Successful Makeup Artiste

B eing an artist is more than enjoying makeup, it’s a fully encompassing business with equal parts creativity, clear communication, and the most important, excellent customer service. This is, of course, my personal point of view, but the lessons I learned in business are the same ones that I apply to my career now and I believe have led to me finding success. I believe that when deciding to pursue artistry as a full time career,  there are a few things to keep in mind.

First things first, it’s true when “they” say that first impressions are the most important. From the first correspondence with a potential client, the way you present yourself when arriving to a job, and even the opening page of your business website or social media. In an industry with so much competition, focusing on making a great and lasting impression is imperative. I like to think of corresponding with a potential client, and even my agent, just like we (should) do in business- promptly. Early in my career, I asked another makeup artist to shadow and to my surprise, she agreed! I was elated and she asked me to send her some sample work, my social media site, and some details of what I wanted to learn in our time together. I responded back promptly and told her I’d send it all that night and continued my day, it was a long one, I got home tired, and ultimately got back to her 3 days later with all the info requested. To my surprise, she got back to me right away, but with a hard lesson-she turned me down. She (very kindly) taught me one of those lessons that would stick forever, if I wanted to be taken seriously in the industry, I would stick to my word. If I said I’d send the information that night, I should have sent it, and if I needed extra time, I should have written her so. Sigh- that was hard, but I will always remember her words and now, I stick to my timelines. If I tell a client to “standby” because I am with another client at the moment, I get back to them, that day. Even if it’s by text or pushing it back to the next day; staying on top of communication and being transparent in doing so is not only a part of doing good business, but definitely a part of being a successful artist.

Next, and possibly the most important part of finding in business, is customer service. How many times have you been in a store or restaurant and experienced bad customer service? I bet you’ve thought of that experience every time you’ve been back, if you ever went back again. Customer service in an artist setting can mean anything from your demeanor while you’re working on your client, the types of conversations you might be having (especially those you think nobody is listening to), how often you might be browsing your phone while working, and even how you follow up after the job is complete.

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