I've been stumbling with writing on this topic for sometime. I think that some people might find it as though I'm trying to convince future clients of my services or expect them not to question me and what I do at all. That is not the case. I love questions. I love when someone is fascinated with what I do, why I do it, where I got my education, what's in my kit, etc. So due to insightful conversations I've had with all sorts of women, I wanted to propose my own question; What type of investment are you willing to make for yourself on one of the most important days of your life?
I come across so many wonderful, beautiful and just plain different personalities. Some women like a lot of makeup and wear it regularly, some never wear makeup and don't have any interest in learning how to apply it. Some just don't want to spend the time on themselves which is totally fine. That is me Monday-Friday. When women ask me about my pricing or have a conversation surrounding it, I get ranges from, "Wow you're so reasonable!" to "That is out of my budget." or "I would never pay someone THAT MUCH money just to do my makeup." To each their own. I'm not going to sit there are persuade one person that I am worth it if they don't already see that for themselves in my work that I post. But this is the ONE place where I can have an open conversation with those that feel what I do isn't worth it and is essentially a pointless service.
What makeup artists do isn't something that anyone can do. For those of you that have said, "I am seriously just makeup challenged. I've tried to contour myself or give myself a cat eye and it always looks stupid and uneven." If you have a hard time creating looks on your own face, the face that you see EVERY SINGLE DAY, what makes you think that just ANYBODY on the street can do it for you? First and foremost, makeup is an art. At the end of the day, your face is a blank canvas for a makeup artist. Not everyone can create straight lines. Not everyone can recognize the color wheel and know what color is best for you. Blending and shading is part of all forms of art. So to that I say, how much are you willing to pay for someone to recognize your best qualities and accentuate them, or take your worst qualities and straighten them out? What is it worth to you, to have someone recognize that you have hooded, close set, blue eyes that can make your eyes look bigger, farther apart and bluer just by correctly applying eyeshadow? This is just a small example of the things we as artists recognize, that others simply do not.
I've also had people ask me what the difference is between what I do and what someone at a makeup counter does at any mall. The difference is that, not all of the makeup counters require their employees to attend a makeup school. MAC has a school that is great. But at the end of the day, these employees are there to SELL the brand. They aren't invested in you and they are not going to come to you on location. Another thing I don't like is that their kit is limited to their brand and their brand only. To me, that just seems insane. I am a firm believer that each brand has something that is unique and different to it's brand that makes it exceptional. For example, MAC eyeshadows have a reputation for being the best, Makeup Forever has an amazing line of HD Foundation, NARS is known for their amazing blush. When you're limited to only ONE brand, to me, you are not getting the best there is to offer. You are getting a possibly uneducated sales rep, using their line that they work for and trying to get you to buy a lipstick to touch up for the rest of the night.
Any makeup artist that is worth your time will have multiple things. They will have a secure contract for you to sign and place a deposit on. They will have a high end kit that contains only the best makeup that they have tested themselves. (MOST kits will contain 90% high end brands. You get what you pay for.) They will provide a sanitary work space and prove their sanitation of their products as well as their brushes. They will ask you questions. Every person has different skin and not one product works the same on everyone. They should be knowledgeable on temperatures of light and how they can contort colors into looking different shades. (Have you ever got ready in your bathroom looking amazing and then walked outside into pure daylight and realized your makeup is 3 shades too dark from your jaw to your neck?) There are so many things I could touch on but these are the most important things to me.
What you're actually paying for when you hire a professional makeup artist is simply security. There is no other word I would use to describe it. You have peace of mind knowing that you hired a professional that will show up on time (not cancel on you for any reason other than by acts of God), bring their entire kit of professional makeup (possibly their light system as well) to YOU, will make you look EXACTLY how you want to look, will guide you in the direction of what will look best for your skin tone, face shape, eye shape, color correct you, and will provide a makeup application that will last through the tears, sweat, weather related problems, hugging/rubbing on people and crazy dancing that is sure to take place. I wonder all the time WHY a bride WOULD NOT get a makeup artist when they are paying thousands of dollars for a photographer/videographer to record the whole day. WHY wouldn't you WANT that security of knowing that your makeup is HD compatible and will not look tear streaked or creasing/sliding off your face in the pictures you paid thousands of dollars to have? You can't repeat the day. There are no do-overs for your wedding. You will have these pictures to look back on forever.
I truly hope that whoever reads this that may have been on the fence, will appreciate the work that we do and recognize that QUALITY work is NOT cheap. BUDGET for this type of service. I promise you will get what you pay for every.single.time.