How to be a Successful Freelance HMUA Artist in the Age of the Gig Economy
The Australian beauty market is rapidly growing and breaking new boundaries. Once known only for the rich, the industry is now deemed more accessible to everyone because of the progress being made in affordability and social media. These changes have allowed beauty professionals to make a name for themselves and develop their own signature brand. Among the best examples are trailblazers such as Karissa Pukas, Lauren Curtis, Chloe Morello, and more.
These pioneers have inspired countless others to take up the brush and glam as a career to bank upon. The beauty professionals we see nowadays are no longer confined in workplaces. They are often travelling across the city to service their customers. This is the new gig economy and it is a lucrative career.
You can have a career in hair & makeup if you are passionate about it. You know what the old saying goes: “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” That holds true in many ways if you commit to being a freelance stylist. Your passion and drive are the things that will define your success.
Why consider freelancing?
Being a freelance Hair & Makeup Artist has its pros and cons. The cons are: you don’t have a fixed monthly income and everything is Do-It-Yourself. The pros are: having your own time, being able to mould your own personal brand style and the freedom from the daily work grind.
The gig economy is on the rise and more people are finding ways to work at their own terms. They find their clients through social media, online groups, community chats and niche marketplaces.
Australia has a huge number of makeup artists that are under the gig economy. Some of them even have started in selling their own signature product lines. There are many reasons why they became freelancers. Some wanted the comfort of flexibility. They get to choose their own hours and to speak with their clients directly. They also get the option to choose their own clients that they see fit. The most important of all is the freedom gained from pursuing their own path and making it big. They are no longer restricted by the common 9 to 5 grind found under beauty studios.
There’s a huge and diverse market to get new clients in creative ways. There will always be weddings, debuts, parties, and businesses as clients. These businesses often choose to hire freelancers for their events. If you’re just starting, you can first get recommendations from friends and family. They will help you branch out and make more acquaintances in your growing network.
How to Become Successful in the Industry
There are things you need to consider before taking the first step to the freelancer life. If you have the support of your friends and family, you still need to make the best personal effort to succeed in the freelance world. How will you be able to start? Here are things you should consider to prepare yourself.
Skills You Really Need
Passion—This is the driving force that will push you to move forward. Not everyone has the passion for the things they do. Others just do the job to get easy money. You must find meaning in what you do. You must treasure every moment. Your career is a journey and not a destination. Each client is a blank canvas and a potential work of art.
Confidence—It’s your job as a makeup artist to boost your client’s confidence. You are there to help them look and feel their best. It’s a different story if you’re the one who doesn’t have confidence in yourself. Confidence is necessary since it will help you overcome challenges and keep pushing yourself to become better at your craft.
Communication skills—Having good communication skills will allow you to work effectively with your clients. It will also help you understand what your client wants and be able to deliver what they are asking for. If you do an excellent job, they will be very happy to do business with you again.
Actual Skills – This pertains to the level of your skill in applying makeup and fixing up hair. Makeup artists must be very proficient in identifying the cosmetic brands and the best combinations to style up a client. Factors such as age, skin colour, facial features and preference are conditions to work with. Makeup artists must be flexible, creative and accommodating in order to style up their clients with the best results possible. It is a journey of continuous learning where new fads, new trends, new techniques and new cosmetic brands can influence your style. You must have the dedication to improving your craft.
Materials You Must Have
Portfolio— Your best work upfront. This is exactly why you need to build your portfolio as you start your career. A portfolio is the collection of your best works. A portfolio will be able to showcase what you can do with your abilities.
Pricing—Before taking up clients, you must determine your pricing. It can prove as a challenge. Pricing too much or too low can affect your image as a makeup artist. Charge too high and you risk losing clients. Charge too low and you will make less money and be branded as “cheap for hire”. The best advice to take is to observe your competitors, look at their price range, their years of experience and compare it with yours. Pricing by the middle-ground will allow you to price your services within the acceptable rates offered by the market.
Tools—Your makeup kit is your lifeline. Purchase cosmetics and beauty products that have the best results. You may choose the ones that you are very familiar with. Then there’s the budget. When you’re starting out, make sure to buy a versatile makeup kit. Don’t worry if you don’t have a large set of makeup supplies. You would want to have the basics and essentials first. You can later upgrade your kit with more varieties once you start earning.
Pointers You Must Not Forget
As a makeup artist, you need to start off with the support of your friends and family in order to get referrals as customers. In return, these customers that are pleased with your service can help market you through referrals. Once someone gains an interest, you can now show your portfolio and start negotiating with the prices.
Aside from family and friends, you must learn the tricks of the trade. Networking is essential in building an identity in the industry. You must learn that marketing is essential for freelance workers. Whether it’s a quick chat during events or starting a conversation online, what matters is you build connections and convert them into a stream of customers.
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