Film Makeup Artist Job Description

Film Makeup Artist Job Description, Skills, and Salary

Are you searching for a film makeup artist job description? Get to know about the duties, responsibilities, qualifications, and skills requirements of a film makeup artist. Feel free to use our job description template to produce your own. We also provide you with information about the salary you can earn as a film makeup artist.


Who is a Film Makeup Artist?

A Film Makeup Artist is someone who applies makeup on actors on set. They may contribute significantly to helping writers and directors deliver stories on the big screen with their art. Depending on the film and the location, they could collaborate closely with the production crew and the director, and their working hours and schedules might vary.

They may also create and apply theatrical makeup designs for feature films and television actors. Depending on the production and the character, the complexity and style of the design will change, but skilled film makeup artists can pull off various looks from any era and genre.

There are like four different types of film makeup artists, they are:

Key makeup artists: They do the makeup for prominent roles and actresses and complete any particularly challenging designs. The lead makeup artist assigns tasks to and manages the assistants and makeup artists to maintain a uniform appearance throughout the session.

Makeup artist: Makeup artists dress up the non-lead performers and members of the ensemble cast. Under the guidance of the key makeup artist, makeup artists are responsible for executing the key makeup artist’s unique creations.

Makeup assistants: They assist makeup artists with body makeup (such as body painting or other art) and other menial tasks. The chief makeup artist may direct the assistant makeup artist to take photos of the cast’s makeup in case of retakes.

SFX makeup artists: Special effects makeup artists are the ones who use prosthetics and foam latex in their makeup for actors.

Film makeup artists, like many other unseen workers in the entertainment business, realize they’ve done a good job when their art looks so real.


Film Makeup Artist Job Description

What is a film makeup artist job description? A film makeup artist job description is simply a list of duties and responsibilities of a film makeup artist in an organization. Below are the film makeup artist job description examples you can use to develop your resume or write a film makeup artist job description for your employee. Employers can also use it to sieve out job seekers when choosing candidates for interviews.

The duties and responsibilities of the film makeup artist include the following:

  • Clarify the client’s visual needs through communication.
  • Create and draw out the haircut and makeup design concepts.
  • Ensure you make the necessary steps to reduce unfavorable side effects from specialized makeup and haircare procedures usage.
  • Get updated about laws and regulations regarding health and safety.
  • Fit and care for prostheses, hairpieces, and wigs.
  • Keep abreast of new cosmetics and beauty products.
  • Locate, budget for, and purchase supplies and machinery from knowledgeable vendors.
  • Read scripts to determine the materials and appearance needed, take budgetary considerations into account, and find areas requiring investigation.
  • Make sure that the hair and makeup are consistent, and work with the other design team members to create a cohesive and overall aesthetic.
  • Showcase and practice your practical knowledge of lighting, the photographic process, colors, and the effects special effects and makeup techniques have on the skin.
  • Predict how long it will take an actor to get made up as it can help you be more efficient with your time management.
  • Work fast and precisely under time constraints.
  • Take thorough notes and pictures of your work to keep a current portfolio of work.



  • A high school certificate, GED, or its equivalent
  • An associate’s or bachelor’s degree in cosmetology or related discipline
  • Experience through an internship or apprenticeship as a makeup artist for television or movies
  • Professional certification in makeup, cosmetology, or a related profession
  • Have a portfolio
  • Knowledge of several makeup techniques


Essential Skills

Here are the skills you require in your career as a film makeup artist:

  • Ability to Stay Calm Under Pressure
  • Communication
  • Creativity
  • Customer Service
  • Flexibility
  • Detail-orientation
  • Interpersonal
  • Makeup Knowledge
  • Ready to Learn
  • Time Management
  • Digital

Ability to Stay Calm Under Pressure

Even film makeup artists occasionally make blunders since nobody is flawless as sometimes the lipstick or eyeliner may not look quite right. In these circumstances, if the film makeup artist becomes upset, the actor will too. A talented film makeup artist should learn to keep calm in these circumstances and find quick fixes.


Film makeup artists will interact with clients, photographers, stylists, models, and celebrities from time to time. An effective makeup application depends on understanding each film’s or actor’s demands and objectives. As a professional, you must also be polite and assured while offering advice, making remarks, and so on.


As with every kind of art, makeup takes a little bit of imagination to stand out. Instead of using moisturizer or primer, the first step in achieving an iconic appearance is visualizing and conjuring up an image of it in your head. The most crucial quality a makeup artist must have is creativity and an eye for beauty.

Customer Service

Film makeup artists must spend hours collaborating closely with their customers. Making your clients feel comfortable and recognizing their demands becomes crucial. Gaining their trust is crucial, as is understanding what works for them and patiently gaining their buy-in. In addition to ensuring a lasting relationship with customers, providing excellent customer service will enable you to get new customers through their referrals.


Film makeup artists must be versatile and ready to adjust their methods rapidly to meet the comfort and demands of their customers when those needs change. A lot of times, there will be several adjustments in films. For film makeup artists, it will be crucial to be ready for such circumstances, adjust swiftly, and complete the work with the highest quality.


A film makeup artist must master the important ability to pay attention to detail. To give your customer a faultless appearance requires hours of work and care. A minor error may ruin the overall appearance. The difference between a professional and an amateur artist is finesse. Makeup artists must learn to focus for long periods without losing track of the minute details.


As a film makeup artist, you are your own business’s marketer, sales representative, and entrepreneur. Building relationships with clients is a necessary part of your profession from the time of booking until the project is finished. By developing your interpersonal abilities, you may make sure the client will remember you in the future. Additionally, having outstanding people skills can aid in making clients feel at ease, which is crucial for a stress-free encounter. Clients frequently ask you about tools you’re utilizing or the aesthetic you’re designing. It will be nice to patiently respond to their inquiries and handle any issues they may have. Your interpersonal skills will be crucial in these situations as well.

Makeup Knowledge

The most important skill a makeup artist should possess is a thorough understanding of makeup theory. An in-depth study of several disciplines, including color theory, face anatomy and bone structure, product chemistry, etc., will be aided by a well-designed cosmetics course. Beyond this, mastering makeup tools, methods, and trends will be essential for professional success.

Ready to Learn

In the beauty sector, a fresh trend emerges every so often. A makeup artist must keep up with emerging trends and constantly pick new skills. Clients will turn to you for advice on the newest styles, and occasionally they’ll want you to imitate a certain celebrity’s or film’s makeup; in these situations, understanding the most recent trends in the beauty industry will help you appear to do a great job. It’s crucial to broaden your horizons as a learner if you want to succeed as a makeup artist.

Time Management

You will often be working under tight schedules as a film makeup artist, so effective time management is a crucial skill. Delays may result in a rushed and subpar job and an unsatisfied client. In addition, the effectiveness of all operations will be a component of any film makeup artist’s success. This requires you to think on your feet and be ready for any emergency or catastrophe in addition to ensuring you have all the equipment necessary to produce a fantastic output in line with the client’s expectations.


Knowing how to use social media and having some basic video abilities will assist you as a film makeup artist in the digital age to exhibit your work, gain a following, and attract new clients.

Knowing how to use social media and having some basic video abilities will assist you as a makeup artist in the digital age to exhibit your work, gain a following, and attract new clients. It will also assist you in honing your trade and improving your proficiency.


How to Become a Film Makeup Artist

To become a film makeup artist, follow these steps:

Step One: Enroll in a Cosmetology Program

It’s not necessary to attend cosmetology school to work as a film makeup artist, but it can give you a better grasp of how to apply makeup, style, and trim hair, and take care of nails and skin. Additionally, you might study bacteriology, sanitation, and business practices.

Find a reputable institution that teaches courses with a focus on film makeup. The course length might be for months, depending on the curriculum and licensing requirements. Other options for schooling include:

Obtaining a bachelor’s degree in theater from a college or university is an additional option. Many programs include cosmetics in the curriculum, and some even let students specialize. You may learn how to apply basic makeup and corrective and special effects makeup with this training.

Another option is earning an associate’s degree in theater or drama. You may study courses in stage makeup, stagecraft, lighting, and production. It could give you a strong basis for upcoming training, education, and career progress.

Step Two: Become Licensed

It’s crucial to adhere to local laws where you intend to operate if you want to become a certified film makeup artist. Through vocational institutions or schools, you can finish a training program that your state or country mandates.

Step Three: Perfect your Craft

In addition to being innovative in their work, successful film makeup artists pay attention to the producers, performers, and directors to get the desired effects. If you possess the abilities or characteristics stated above, your chances of success will rise.

Step Four: Gain Practical Experience

Working as a makeup artist at a fashion store, cosmetics shop or theater will provide a practical experience. There are people with various personalities, ages, and skin tones. A key component of makeup artistry is customer service, and the counter is an excellent spot to gain the most knowledge and exposure.

Step Five: Learn the Fundamentals of Producing

Knowing what takes place on a movie set may help you prepare for your visit by letting you know who to report to, where to stand, and whether you can speak with the director. Learning about the many crew members, departments, and tasks can help you understand who does what. You may access a range of online resources, go to nearby filmmaking workshops, or sign up for filmmaking programs to learn about the fundamentals of production.

Step Six: Build a Portfolio

Making films or pictures of your finished products will assist you in creating a portfolio that demonstrates your methods and abilities for potential clients and employers to assess. A portfolio should ideally demonstrate the range of appearances and fashion choices you can make. You may collaborate with photographers to produce work that you two can use for portfolios.

Your website or social media account can host your portfolio. Simple portfolio websites are inexpensive, simple to make and improve your professional appearance. Additionally, you may create a different social network page and upload your images there. Choose a media that is ideal for the kind of makeup artist position you want to get and is also simple for other people to observe.

Step Seven: Network

Working in the film industry requires more than just skill; it also requires connections. Think about using social media to grow your network or spending time in locations frequented by individuals in your business. When you are among individuals in the profession, whether you are working or just networking, you want to create the greatest possible impression because film crews frequently use the same makeup artists for all of their projects.

For professional makeup artists, there are several organizations, clubs, and unions that can facilitate networking with the appropriate individuals. They frequently provide chances for people interested in employment in makeup artistry to network with companies and other experts.


Where to Work as a Film Makeup Artist

Film makeup artists work in independent television networks, theaters, and major film studios.

The job frequently involves working shifts at night and on weekends. They spend a lot of time in studios and on sets, so the surroundings and working circumstances change often.

Physical fitness is important for film makeup artists since they spend time standing.

Because many major motion pictures or television shows employ sets spread around the nation and abroad, traveling will come from time to time.

The work can be rather demanding because of the long hours and significance of the role in a project. However, most film makeup artists find their profession gratifying and love it.


Film Makeup Artist Salary Scale

In the United States, a film makeup artist earns an average salary of $45,760 yearly which is about $22.00 an hour, $880 weekly, or $3,813 monthly. Their annual salary can be as high as $108,500 and as low as $15,000.

The yearly income range for film makeup artists in the UK is from £18720 to £33986, or £22809 on average.

In Canada, the average salary for a film makeup artist is CA$44,411 per year or CA$21 per hour. Makeup artists typically earn between CA$33,219 and CA$52,272 annually.

In Australia, the average pay for makeup artists is AU$158,779 per year or AU$81.43 per hour. More experienced professionals earn up to AU$162,344 yearly, while entry-level roles start at AU$68,070.

A film makeup artist in Germany may earn between €25,628 and €40,327.

In Ireland, a makeup artist can expect to make between €24,299 and €38,235 per year.

A film makeup artist in Nigeria may earn a monthly average salary of ₦80,000.

The salary scale differ based on skill level, the number of jobs done, clients, location, and years of experience.

Job Description

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