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Makeup Artist
Makeup Art by Alex
Posts: 19
West Hollywood, California, US


I have done a lot of TFP/TFCD, and I don't want to anymore since makeup is now my only source of income.

I don't know what price to put on my services...

I don't want to charge too much, because I'm still newer, and there are plenty of people who would do it for free.

I recently got offered a job from a business who needs someone to do makeup for a few employees. I think it's for their website/cards.

I just went blank when I was asked what I charge... I really don't know what to charge.

I think all my life, having no money, asking someone to pay me for something I do seems really weird for me.

So, I'm seeking advice:

MUAs- How much would you charge?
How do you price your services?

Thanks--

Alex
Sep 16 09 04:44 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Makeup Art by Alex
Posts: 19
West Hollywood, California, US


...Am I allowed to bump?
Sep 16 09 07:12 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Jacquelyn Marie
Posts: 4,129
Boston, Massachusetts, US


First off, it depends on what kind of makeup you're doing/how many people/how many hours. I would keep those ideas in mind. Also don't sell yourself short. If you know you are capable of doing amazing makeup then mark your prices accordingly.


My best friend is a freelance makeup artist and her rates are usually $50-$100.

Hope this helps.
Sep 16 09 07:57 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Kristen S Makeup
Posts: 1,371
Plymouth, Massachusetts, US


There are a lot of threads on this. If you do a search, you will find some. 

For the most part, everyone is different, although they *should* be in the same ballpark.  It depends on the market you're in and the job you're doing.  The best thing for you to do is to get in touch with some other makeup artists in your area. 

Don't sell yourself short and don't be afraid to charge what you're worth.  I was terrified to give a number at first, but it gets easier with practice.  smile
Sep 16 09 08:06 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
ROSHAR
Posts: 3,791
New York, New York, US


Honestly- I think you need more professional shots in your port before you start charging.

I suggest professional photography
Professional models
and clean makeup

Im not trying to critique you but trying to let you know.

It takes time to build a portfolio strong enough to present to clients.
Took me 2 years. 4 to get it to what you see now.

Keep testing but each time try to work with better and better photographers.
Sep 16 09 08:40 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Jordan Liberty
Posts: 4,828
New York, New York, US


Roshar wrote:
Honestly- I think you need more professional shots in your port before you start charging.

I suggest professional photography
Professional models
and clean makeup

Im not trying to critique you but trying to let you know.

It takes time to build a portfolio strong enough to present to clients.
Took me 2 years. 4 to get it to what you see now.

Keep testing but each time try to work with better and better photographers.

+1

Sep 16 09 08:53 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Elizabeth Lakomsky
Posts: 2,235
New York, New York, US


Jacquie Marie wrote:
First off, it depends on what kind of makeup you're doing/how many people/how many hours. I would keep those ideas in mind. Also don't sell yourself short. If you know you are capable of doing amazing makeup then mark your prices accordingly.


My best friend is a freelance makeup artist and her rates are usually $50-$100.

Hope this helps.

This is probably the worst advice.  Ever. Period. Op, it depends on your market as well. There are many threads On this. Check the FAQ thread listed on top of the forum

Sep 16 09 08:58 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
ROSHAR
Posts: 3,791
New York, New York, US


Jacquie Marie wrote:
My best friend is a freelance makeup artist and her rates are usually $50-$100.

Your best friend is seriously undercharging.

Sep 16 09 09:04 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Monkey
Posts: 12,755
Adelaide, South Australia, Australia


Elizabeth Lakomsky wrote:

This is probably the worst advice.  Ever. Period. Op, it depends on your market as well. There are many threads On this. Check the FAQ thread listed on top of the forum

MmmHmmm!!! This isn't how you charge.

Sep 16 09 09:06 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Jordan Liberty
Posts: 4,828
New York, New York, US


::cough:: undercutting ::cough::
Sep 16 09 09:08 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Jacquelyn Marie
Posts: 4,129
Boston, Massachusetts, US


I just read in your profile "Since doing makeup is my only source of income, I won't do any TFP/TFCD unless it's an assignment that I really need for my book. " So charge what you normally do?
Sep 16 09 09:36 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Monkey
Posts: 12,755
Adelaide, South Australia, Australia


Jacquie Marie wrote:
I just read in your profile "Since doing makeup is my only source of income, I won't do any TFP/TFCD unless it's an assignment that I really need for my book. " So charge what you normally do?

Good point!!

If you're so experienced that you'll only take paid work, you should have your rates all worked out by now!

If you're not that experienced, you need to test more. With experience comes knowledge. With that knowledge, you won't need to ask what you should charge.

Sep 16 09 09:43 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Vanessa Dawn- Jhaesayte
Posts: 2,567
Toronto, Ontario, Canada


Roshar wrote:
Honestly- I think you need more professional shots in your port before you start charging.

I suggest professional photography
Professional models
and clean makeup

Im not trying to critique you but trying to let you know.

It takes time to build a portfolio strong enough to present to clients.
Took me 2 years. 4 to get it to what you see now.

Keep testing but each time try to work with better and better photographers.

+2

If you can get money for it, then power to you, but please charge by the half day or full day, not per person. I can't tell you what that would be because it's different depending on your area and the type of work involved (ie: commercial work, portfolio development, bridal)

And since you are just starting, I will tell you something that will suck to hear, but will be helpful in the long run... It takes a LONG time to make enough money from makeup to be living off of it decently. I would recommend that you do NOT use this as your main source of income YET. Get a part time job to help you pay the bills, and keep testing so that you book reflects some of the better portfolios you see here on model mayhem.

You will get paid jobs occasionally, but remember, asking for the photos from paid jobs doesn't really come off as professional, so if you ONLY take paid jobs, your portfolio won't show your improvement (because you either WON'T get the photos from paid jobs, as that's pretty common, or it will be the kind of work you won't want to put in your book in most cases). Even people who have been working MUAs for a decade still do test and trade work for their books. That's a part of the job that never ends.

I'll also put it this way... Have you DONE bridal makeup before? How many times? Have you worked in fashion shows? Do you know how to groom an older gentleman for ceo headshots? Can you work fast under pressure and get good results? Can you do a nice clean beauty MU job in under 20 minutes? Can you handle doing basic hair? Can you do children's makeup? Can you do a senior woman's makeup? How well is your kit stocked up? Do you know the difference between a lot of the styles of makeup? Are  you familiar with period/era makeup?

Just to name a few.... if you have said "I don't know" to most of these, then IMHO you are not ready to be charging yet. Not to sound harsh, but I'm trying to gauge your level or skill and knowledge as an artist so that I can give you better advice on whether you should even be accepting paid jobs at a lower rate, or refusing it because you are not at that level yet. (Because undercutting someone who IS at that level of experience because you are a bit less experienced is not cool)

Sep 16 09 09:45 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Makeup Art by Alex
Posts: 19
West Hollywood, California, US


I've never charged before...that's why I'm making this post.
Sep 16 09 09:46 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
ROSHAR
Posts: 3,791
New York, New York, US


Makeup Art by Alex wrote:
I've never charged before...that's why I'm making this post.

Your profile says doing MU is your source of income.

Sep 16 09 09:49 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Makeup Art by Alex
Posts: 19
West Hollywood, California, US


If I had the time to get a part time job, trust me, I would... but with the whole school-freelancing- single mom thing.. It's tough.

and if you would, please stop quoting the post that pretty much says my work sucks and answer this:

AS A NEW MUA, IF YOU WERE OFFERED PAID WORK, HOW MUCH WOULD YOU CHARGE, AND HOW DO YOU DETERMINE IT?
Sep 16 09 09:49 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
ROSHAR
Posts: 3,791
New York, New York, US


Makeup Art by Alex wrote:
If I had the time to get a part time job, trust me, I would... but with the whole school-freelancing- single mom thing.. It's tough.

and if you would, please stop quoting the post that pretty much says my work sucks and answer this:

AS A NEW MUA, IF YOU WERE OFFERED PAID WORK, HOW MUCH WOULD YOU CHARGE, AND HOW DO YOU DETERMINE IT?

No one says your work sucks.

We are saying your portfolio isnt strong enough to command proper rates at this time.
I even took the time to help explain what you needed in order to command proper rates.

That was 3 years of trial and error that I learned on my own but handed to you on a silver platter in 5 min.
Your welcome.

To answer your question (with a proper portfolio)
My day rate goes between 600 to 1500 and goes up depending if its a bigger client.
Half day is 350.

Sep 16 09 09:56 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Vanessa Dawn- Jhaesayte
Posts: 2,567
Toronto, Ontario, Canada


But remember, Rosh is in New York, so his rates will be different from what you should be charging.
Sep 16 09 09:58 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
ROSHAR
Posts: 3,791
New York, New York, US


Jhaesayte wrote:
But remember, Rosh is in New York, so his rates will be different from what you should be charging.

True- but if she wanted specifically her area she would have pvted those in her area and not ask generally.

Sep 16 09 10:00 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Monkey
Posts: 12,755
Adelaide, South Australia, Australia


Makeup Art by Alex wrote:
I've never charged before...that's why I'm making this post.

When you're ready to use makeup as your only source of income, you'll know how much to charge.

It's business. You don't just hop online and ask what your business should charge clients. You learn, research, develop a business plan, etc. for a long time before you know what to charge.

Sep 16 09 10:00 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Monkey
Posts: 12,755
Adelaide, South Australia, Australia


Jhaesayte wrote:
But remember, Rosh is in New York, so his rates will be different from what you should be charging.

And he's amazing!! tongue

Sep 16 09 10:01 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Vanessa Dawn- Jhaesayte
Posts: 2,567
Toronto, Ontario, Canada


Makeup Art by Alex wrote:
If I had the time to get a part time job, trust me, I would... but with the whole school-freelancing- single mom thing.. It's tough.

Hmmm.... then I would say that you should get a part time job that pays a decent wage, and do makeup once every week or two as tests to buff up your book. It will be more stable for you AND your child to be getting a regular paycheck in a long term way, instead of getting sporadic money here and there and having to struggle in between jobs to make ends meet. And when you are ready to break out into the professional MUA world, you can charge good rates that people will be willing to pay because you have an awesome book, instead of getting the odd job here and there that will only pay a low rate. It really would be better in the long run.

EDIT- I am NOT, by any  means, telling you to quit doing makeup. I'm just trying to drive home the fact that it may take longer than you are expecting to make a decent living at this, and that it will be even MORE difficult for you and your family than getting stable part time work. You can still take on the odd paid job even if you work part time, as you can switch your schedule around with people who are willing to take your shift, or if it's a HIGH paying gig, call in sick.

Sep 16 09 10:02 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Makeup Art by Alex
Posts: 19
West Hollywood, California, US


Thanks everyone for all your help!
Sep 16 09 10:06 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
ROSHAR
Posts: 3,791
New York, New York, US


Id like to add.
When stepping into full time freelance you go through periods of no work.

I can be booked 15 days straight or not have a single job in 2 months.
Sep 16 09 10:06 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Vanessa Dawn- Jhaesayte
Posts: 2,567
Toronto, Ontario, Canada


But the best thing to do to answer your question would be to find people on MM who are working artists in your area, and ask them what their rates are. Not all of them will answer, but if you can get three or four replies, then you can get a good general idea of what your rate should be.
Sep 16 09 10:07 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Danny Does Glamour
Posts: 2,342
Atlanta, Georgia, US


Roshar wrote:
Honestly- I think you need more professional shots in your port before you start charging.

I suggest professional photography
Professional models
and clean makeup

Im not trying to critique you but trying to let you know.

It takes time to build a portfolio strong enough to present to clients.
Took me 2 years. 4 to get it to what you see now.

Keep testing but each time try to work with better and better photographers.

She's already being asked how much her services cost. Some people don't give a shit about portfolios. Sometimes networking or word of mouth gets the job. If she's already being asked, why wait?

OP, charge what is standard in your area. If you're uncertain then do some research.

Sep 16 09 10:14 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Ken Marcus Studios
Posts: 8,356
Los Angeles, California, US


Have you asked them what they have been paying in the past and what their budget is?

Seems like that's a better place to start, rather than ask us in a forum


KM
Sep 16 09 10:15 pm  Link  Quote 
Hair Stylist
A J T
Posts: 3,113
Brooklyn, New York, US


Jhaesayte wrote:
But the best thing to do to answer your question would be to find people on MM who are working artists in your area, and ask them what their rates are. Not all of them will answer, but if you can get three or four replies, then you can get a good general idea of what your rate should be.

Emphasis on the working part. Make sure they are people that take their job seriously, not just Girls With Caboodles. You'll get the most accurate answers from them.

Sep 16 09 10:16 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
ROSHAR
Posts: 3,791
New York, New York, US


Danny Does Glamour wrote:
She's already being asked how much her services cost. Some people don't give a shit about portfolios. Sometimes networking or word of mouth gets the job. If she's already being asked, why wait?

OP, charge what is standard in your area. If you're uncertain then do some research.

AKKK- I just reread the OP.

OP- I owe you an apology.
I Skimmed through the post and didnt see that you were asking cause someone asked you.

OK- its still usefull information for you, just not in what you were asking this moment.

But to actually answer your question...

One thing you can do is ask what their budget is.
Another is to PVT those in your area and ask how much they would charge for this.

Again- sorry I misread.

Sep 16 09 10:21 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Danny Does Glamour
Posts: 2,342
Atlanta, Georgia, US


Alexander Tome wrote:

Emphasis on the working part. Make sure they are people that take their job seriously, not just Girls With Caboodles. You'll get the most accurate answers from them.

What are "girls with caboodles"? Sounds kinky.

I really don't belong in this forum do I?

Sep 16 09 10:22 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Jessica Vaugn
Posts: 7,320
Los Angeles, California, US


Danny Does Glamour wrote:
I really don't belong in this forum do I?

No. We belong at the gym. Go put on pants.

Sep 16 09 10:23 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Monkey
Posts: 12,755
Adelaide, South Australia, Australia


Danny Does Glamour wrote:

What are "girls with caboodles"? Sounds kinky.

I really don't belong in this forum do I?

Caboodle = kit


GWC... Guy with camera... Girl with caboodle

Sep 16 09 10:24 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Danny Does Glamour
Posts: 2,342
Atlanta, Georgia, US


Jessica Vaugn IN MIAMI wrote:

No. We belong at the gym. Go put on pants.

Great. Now everyone in the thread knows I am not wearing pants.

Go put on a top. Your caboodles are showing.

Sep 16 09 10:25 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Jessica Vaugn
Posts: 7,320
Los Angeles, California, US


Danny Does Glamour wrote:
Great. Now everyone in the thread knows I am not wearing pants.

Go put on a top. Your caboodles are showing.

Hey. I just opened my 300 dollar case that was just shipped... we KNOW my caboodle kit is retired!! LOL!

Sep 16 09 10:26 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Vanessa Dawn- Jhaesayte
Posts: 2,567
Toronto, Ontario, Canada


Bahahahaaaa!
Sep 16 09 10:26 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Kristen S Makeup
Posts: 1,371
Plymouth, Massachusetts, US


Roshar wrote:
Id like to add.
When stepping into full time freelance you go through periods of no work.

I can be booked 15 days straight or not have a single job in 2 months.

This. 

It's the hardest thing about being freelance.  Right now I'm trudging through this month with one day off because I'm making up for a slow summer.  Next month might be the same.  I'm going to have to talk to my boss at my non makeup part time job about going on hiatus so I can come back when the working spree ends.  And just so you can gauge where I am, I'm in the union, I've had celebrity clients, I do weddings, I do promotional work, I'm available for travel, and I still keep a part time job.  (Granted she's amazing about my short notice makeup gigs, or else I wouldn't be able to do it)  It's not like once you hit a certain amount of time, or you do a certain kind of job, the makeup gates suddenly open up and you can support yourself comfortably full time forever. Some months I make great money and some I struggle to pay my bills.  It takes a lot of time to build a steady, good paying clientele.

Sep 17 09 05:55 am  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
MP Make-up Artistry
Posts: 5,103
Prince George, British Columbia, Canada


Makeup Art by Alex wrote:
If I had the time to get a part time job, trust me, I would... but with the whole school-freelancing- single mom thing.. It's tough.

and if you would, please stop quoting the post that pretty much says my work sucks and answer this:

AS A NEW MUA, IF YOU WERE OFFERED PAID WORK, HOW MUCH WOULD YOU CHARGE, AND HOW DO YOU DETERMINE IT?

I dont think any one said your work sucks....

But I get the mom thing , im one.. not a single mom abut a mom, do you have a strong supportive circle of people who can help you?? you will need it as some jobs pop up on SUPER short notice and since this will be your only income you will have to take them...

and as far as what your rates should be, why not call around, see what it costs to get make-up done at salons, counters and through freelance artist.. then base your price around that.. keeping in mind your relatively new, but dont super undercut either....

everyone has given some great advice... this forum can be cut throat at time so dont take it personally.... or at least try not to...

also doing thread searches with the plastic puppet are VERY helpful...
wishing you luck and hoping this helps.. Mandy

Sep 17 09 05:05 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Maee Kroft
Posts: 283
Los Angeles, California, US


Jordan Liberty wrote:
::cough:: undercutting ::cough::

+1

Sep 17 09 05:11 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Cindy Contreras MUA
Posts: 62
Montreal, Quebec, Canada


Roshar wrote:

No one says your work sucks.

We are saying your portfolio isnt strong enough to command proper rates at this time.
I even took the time to help explain what you needed in order to command proper rates.

That was 3 years of trial and error that I learned on my own but handed to you on a silver platter in 5 min.
Your welcome.

To answer your question (with a proper portfolio)
My day rate goes between 600 to 1500 and goes up depending if its a bigger client.
Half day is 350.

600 to 1500 ? wow, thats really good! smile
I live in Montréal...I ask around...50 to 100 $ I just started doing this as a Job. But I went to a makeup skool and learned and practiced all about makeup.
Should I move to new york ? tongue Would I have more jobs and opportunity there ?

Sep 17 09 10:29 pm  Link  Quote 
Makeup Artist
Jordan Liberty
Posts: 4,828
New York, New York, US


MUAamorosa wrote:
600 to 1500 ? wow, thats really good! smile
I live in Montréal...I ask around...50 to 100 $ I just started doing this as a Job. But I went to a makeup skool and learned and practiced all about makeup.
Should I move to new york ? tongue Would I have more jobs and opportunity there ?

My half day rate is 350, full is between 500 and 1200 (commercial is higher), and I'm located in Philadelphia (my rates are slightly higher when working in NY or any city that requires travel). $50-100 is undercutting no matter where you are. Rates go hand-in-hand with quality and experience. If you research your area and talk to WORKING artists, you'll probably find out that your rate is significantly lower than the norm. Also make sure your rates reflect your experience in that arena, my rates for film are significantly lower than my rates for still photography, as I am less experienced in film than some of my colleagues.

Sep 17 09 10:36 pm  Link  Quote 
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