Movie makeup jobs are glamorous, exciting, and fun. They have long hours, but these hours are compensated at some of the best rates for estheticians in the country, often around $40 an hour. Plus, there’s all that time spent working and celebrating with movie stars!
General Makeup Artist for Movie Shoots in the New York Metropolitan Area
The best Hollywood makeup jobs are… not in Hollywood. In New York and New Jersey, costs of living are high and costs of labor are higher. In order to attract talented people, movie studios shooting in the metropolitan area pay huge wages, often over copy00,000 a year, just for makeup artists. In between shoots, makeup artists can also have a blast and make a fortune doing makeup for the stage: between comedy shows, Broadway, alternative theatre, and art performances, there’s always money to be made.
General Makeup Artist in Hollywood
Hollywood, strangely, isn’t quite as lucrative as New York. Though your employers are the same studios and TV producers working in New York, more competition from estheticians drives down prices across the board. Still, Hollywood pays more than salons by a long shot. Average wages of makeup artists working in the movies in California are around $80,000 a year.
Sci-fi or Fantasy Makeup Artist, Anywhere
Because they take place in fictional worlds, science fiction and fantasy shoots tend to be all over the map. Major TV shows and movies are shot in New Mexico, Oregon, Vancouver, Toronto, and Montreal. Canada, with its low costs, attracts Space Channel pilot projects by the dozens.
Making aliens or elves might seem unusual for an esthetician. However, it will use all your skills. Your job won’t just be to make aliens look weird, it will be to make them look weird and beautiful. Just look at the work of Mandy Hall in the new Star Trek series. Hall’s work on sexy aliens won her an Academy Award and a first-class meal ticket for the rest of her life.
Designer of an Actor’s Signature Look
This is the ultimate job for makeup artists. Once up-and-coming actors really find a look that works for them, they tend to stick with it. They don’t confine their look just to movies, either: They’ll need it for parties, award shows, or even dates. If you are on the team that made the magic look in the first place, you are in for a wild, and profitable, ride!
Just ask Sam Fine and Gucci Westman. Because of their work on the signature looks of Queen Latifah, Natalie Portman and Drew Barrymore, they now spend their time flying around the world doing the stars’ makeup to the tune of $3000 a day.