Is being a makeup artist a viable career choice?

Having worked in the hair and makeup industry for close to 17 years now and travelled the world doing what I absolutely love.  My answer is a resounding YES! 

I have grown my own freelance makeup business from just myself working full time as a hair and makeup artist (this is my only income and it is lucrative) to a team of 14 artists nationwide. Like any career or dream, it is what you make of it and being a Qualified Makeup artist is just not enough. You need to work incredibly hard to: 
Get your name known and trusted
Get your skills up to date and constantly keep them updated 
To market yourself 
To run a successful freelance business 
Keep your tools and kit updated, clean and hygienic
As I mentioned I have been fortunate enough (no actually let’s rephrase that I’ve worked VERY hard to travel around the world doing makeup. From Berlin, to London and even the Winter Olympics in Canada I have worked backstage with the Top Makeup artists in the World. 
I am a MAC PRO sponsored artist and I still am invited to Master Classes which I never turn down as it’s an opportunity to learn makeup tips and tricks from the best makeup artists world wide! 
What are my top ten tips to becoming successful and actually making money as a makeup artist? 
1.  Get a qualification behind you (not so you have a certificate) But so that you have the confidence and KNOWLEDGE behind you
2.  Network – meet industry insiders, bloggers and photographers 
3. Present yourself well, whether in person or online 
4. Build your kit so that it contains high end, fantastic long lasting products – this takes years of trial and error.  What works for another makeup artist, you may not love to work with. 
5.  Hone your techniques, attend masterclasses, watch YouTube Vids and PRACTICE
6.  Attend our Business Course for all the info on how to start and run a business  being a Makeup Artist is NOT just about painting faces 
7.  Start off by building a professional, incredible portfolio – even if that means doing some free shoots.  Everyone starts somewhere – I did YEARS of free shoots and even now do the odd one or two to update my portfolio and network. 
8.  Add onto your skills.  Attend a course or two when you can afford it. 
9.  Keep motivated – chat to other makeup artist friends and motivate yourself.  No-one can do that for you.  You are your biggest cheerleader! 
10. Set goals for yourself and congratulate yourself and celebrate when you achieve them – no matter how small.