ARTIST TIP | Tips for Aspiring Make-up Artists: Building Your Kit!

One of the building blocks on the road to becoming a make-up artist is developing your professional make-up kit for use on clients. Remember it’s the quality of the products in your make-up kit that will help establish your credibility and make your make-up work overall look better (and last longer!). Since a lot of the jobs in this industry are based on word of mouth, it’s best to have quality products that reflect your quality of work! During those initial months of building your kit, it only makes sense to save where you can, as you try to nail as many gigs as possible. Here are some tips for building your professional make-up kit without breaking the bank:

1. Check out make-up warehouse sales.
L’oreal and MAC both have seasonal sales where prices are marked down anywhere from 25% to 75% off. Remember not only is it a good time to buy make-up, but it’s also a good time to buy moisturizers, make-up removers and make-up tools.

2. Check out your local drugstore or discount superstore for deals.
I’m an avid fan of stocking up on supplies from Shoppers Drug Mart (sorry Canadian readers will know what I’m talking about) whenever they have bonus points sales. Nowadays, Shoppers also sells brands like Lancome, Smashbox, Make-up Forever and Benefit so you can get all of your favourite brands and rack in the bonus points as well!
The other night I was in Wal-Mart and picked up a couple of packs of Maybelline’s Blackest Black Waterproof mascara at one of the best prices I’ve seen in years – 2 tubes for $5! Yes, reason enough for me to scoop up multiple packs!

3. Check out your local dollar store.
I’ve blogged about my love for dollar store q-tips before. Seriously, you can’t go wrong. 400 q-tips for $1. The dollar store q-tips are my fave because they have a minimal amount of cotton, and won’t leave a cottony residue on your face. Check out this post to see their versatility!

4. Check with your favourite counter to see if they offer any make-up artist or make-up artist student discounts.
MAC is great for supporting make-up artists, and you can find out more about their programs here.

5. Buy the lightest foundation and the darkest foundation in cool and warm tones.
Buy these foundations on opposite ends of the colour spectrum and mix in accordance with your client’s skin tone. Until you start getting more make-up artist jobs, you likely won’t need every colour under the rainbow. Splurge on the brand of foundation you buy – great-looking skin post make-up is always a winner with clients and may win you some referrals down the line!

6. Buy disposables.
Buy disposable mascara wands so you don’t have to constantly replace your mascara. Check out Elegant Faces where 25 mascara wands go for $8. That means that’s 25 times you can use your mascara without replacing it for only $8! Imagine having to buy 25 tubes of mascara at $6 each – totally impractical!

7. Try to get a part-time (or full-time) job at a make-up counter.
Not only will you be gaining valuable experience in your field of choice, you’ll also be able to save money by building your kit with a handsome discount!

7. Pass on the make-up kit your school provides, and start building your own!
If you can, skip out on the kit that your school is offering, unless it contains brands that you’ll use in your future professional make-up applications (if you’re unsure of the quality, look up reviews and ask other people who have used the products.) Use that $500 (and up!) that would have gone towards the cost of materials for class towards buying good quality products.

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