Makeup Artist Salary

Women account for the majority of Makeup Artists in the United States. The entire group has an average salary of $16.06 per hour. Earnings for this group are mostly affected by geographic location, followed by the specific employer and tenure. Most Makeup Artists report high levels of job satisfaction. Some workers in this field — more than half — are not awarded benefits. Medical coverage is reported by around two in five and dental plans are enjoyed by slightly less than a third. This report is based on answers to PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$21,455 - $72,483

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$10.14 - $39.45

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$27K$54K$81K
Salary
$21,455 - $72,483  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $2,367  
Commission
$0.00 - $14,681  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$21,609 - $80,755  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jul 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 78
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$22$44$66
Hourly Rate
$10.14 - $39.45  
   
Hourly Tips
$0.00 - $7.55  
Overtime
$10.75 - $63.87  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $2,367  
   
Commission
$0.00 - $14,681  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$21,609 - $80,755  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jul 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 383
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Job Description for Makeup Artist

Makeup artists use cosmetic products to enhance natural beauty and create attractive looks that meet clients' needs. They work in a number of settings, such as demonstrations at makeup counters and trade shows, high-fashion makeup for runway models, theatrical makeup for film and stage productions, and movie special-effects makeup design. Depending on the makeup artist's niche, they may based in one location (such as a salon or makeup counter) or travel regularly to different locations. Makeup artists may work as freelance professionals or for an employer. Examples of freelance makeup artists' jobs might include a bride's makeup for weddings, actors' makeup for stage production, and models' makeup for fashion photographers print and catalog work. Makeup artists with a single employer might work at a specific salon or makeup counter, among other locations. These professionals may continually expand their clientele and specializations, creating opportunities for career advancement. Makeup artists must be able to adapt to clients' specific needs, such as if they have an allergic reaction to a certain cosmetic or if certain products aren't translating to film or photographing well.

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Makeup Artist Tasks

  • Select makeup shades and products for individuals.
  • Sell makeup and cleansing products, and provide information and advice on cosmetic application.
  • Consult with clients, perform makeup demonstrations, and provide skin care consultations.

Common Career Paths for Makeup Artist


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It is somewhat unusual to come across Makeup Artists who move on to become Retail Store Managers, but it does happen from time to time, and the median salary for that position sits slightly higher at $40K. As Makeup Artists progress in their field, many go on to become Performance Makeup Artists. In fact, this transition is more common than anything else, and pay for the position is usually $39K per year. Another common career choice for Makeup Artists is to move into a Retail Store Assistant Manager role. Typically, Retail Store Assistant Managers get paid $32K.

Makeup Artist Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Makeup Artist


Many Makeup Artists can be found at M.A.C., Sephora Usa, Inc, M.A.C. Cosmetics, Sephora Inc., and Macy's, Inc., firms that are at the top of the field. M.A.C. Cosmetics offers the largest salaries in town ($39K on average), but the considerable range in workers' salaries creates a rather varied pay scale that stretches from $31K to $72K.


Pay by Experience Level for Makeup Artist

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


The average beginner in this position makes around $32K, but folks who have been around for five to 10 years see a markedly higher median salary of $40K. After working for 10 to 20 years, Makeup Artists make a median salary of $45K. Makeup Artists who have racked up more than two decades of experience report lower incomes overall; the average sum for this crowd comes out to only $41K.

Pay Difference by Location


Dallas is home to an above-average pay rate for Makeup Artists, 46 percent higher than the national average. Makeup Artists can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like New York (+28 percent), San Francisco (+28 percent), Chicago (+16 percent), and Miami (+15 percent). Seattle ranks last in the field for pay, reporting salaries 12 percent below the national average. A couple other locations with smaller-than-average paychecks include Houston (7 percent lower) and Las Vegas (4 percent lower).

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Experience Affects Makeup Artist Salaries

Experienced
up arrow 25%

Late-Career
up arrow 15%

Mid-Career
up arrow 13%

National Average
$36,000


Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 68 votes.

Gender

Female
91 %
Male
9 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
3%
1-4 years
39%
5-9 years
30%
10-19 years
20%
20 years or more
7%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 40% dental benefits Dental: 31%
vision benefits Vision: 26% employee benefits None: 57%
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