Perfect Your Makeup Kit

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As you begin your career in professional makeup artistry, the main questions you will likely have as a beginning Makeup Artist is how to build the perfect kit, and what makeup products should be included in it! We know that working without tools is impossible, but there is also no one "right" answer in what your makeup kit should look like. Of course there are the basic products that should always be included - but the brands, colors, types, and additional items, is what will make you as an artist unique! As you grow as an artist, your makeup kit will also grow - as you develop your own style and client base, you will notice the products that are the "perfect items" for your own makeup kit.

For now, as you are just beginning - remember that your makeup kit is a magic wand, without which no transformation will succeed. Therefore, if you decide to embark on the path of a Makeup Artist, be patient: the perfect products for your kit is not an easy process, and will include trial and error (though we think testing out new products is part of the fun!) With that said, we have prepared a guideline for the basic items in your beginning makeup kit:

Any makeup begins with cleansing the skin and preparing it for the subsequent application of products. With cleansing, keep everything simple - it is important to choose the medium that suits all skin types. Micellar water is a must have, and a gentle makeup remover is also a great product to have on hand. As well as a moisturizer - you may want to invest in a higher moisture product as well as an oil-free moisturizer product for both your clients with dry and oily skin. Your clients also will likely bring their own skincare preparation products (this is also highly encouraged!) that they prefer to use.

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Selecting your base foundations: this selection is likely the part that you fear the most - but do not worry, it is easily solved! You do not have to buy 12 jars of foundation: otherwise, just imagine how heavy your makeup kit will be! You can consider only four shades (lightest and darkest) of your choice, as well as a white and yellow color adjuster - this will allow you to achieve perfect shades for all skintones.

Concealer: Follow the same guidelines as the foundation - a selection of lightest and darkest shades, which you will also be able to use for cream contour and highlight!

Powder: A translucent loose powder is ideal as it has a universal tone and adapts to any skin tone.

Blush: Each client is an individual with different color needs and requests - a blush palette with lighter and darker neutral shades is ideal.

Contour + highlight: A contour + highlight palette will be very helpful. You may want to pick up two, one with lighter toned contour/highlight and another with the darkest complexions, depending on the clients you plan to work with.

Eyeliner: Invest in neutral (black and brown) colors - the eyeliner can include your application of choice; pencil, gel, or liquid. You may want to consider a few different application techniques, to see what you are most comfortable with using (and in different settings they will require different products and methods of application!)

Eyeshadow:
First, begin with a palette of neutral shades (especially if you will be focusing on special occasion and bridal makeup!), as well as client work. Most clients will want neutral makeup. After you have started your professional education, you can begin to invest in additional creative color palettes that catch your eye for your artistry.

Mascara: a classic black mascara will be your lifelong partner!

For the preparation of lips, invest in a lip balm to moisturize the lips pre-application.

Lipstick:
Consider a lip palette, as similar to the blush palette - clients will request different shades, and a palette allows you to mix to also create your ideal color!

Do not forget about your essential tools:
Brush set - invest in a brush set (or two) which will include application for foundation, powder, eyeshadow, and lips.

Disposable products: It is essential (to remain sanitary) that you always have disposable tools on hand, these include:
Mascara wands + spoolies
Lip wands
Sponges
Q-Tips

in addition to:
70% isopropyl alcohol (for sanitizing your workspace and tools)
sanitizing wipes
Cosmetic Sanitizer Mist / Brush Cleaner
Tissues

It all adds up quickly, but it is important not to skimp on your kit, even as a beginner. While you do not need to invest in the most expensive brands, it is also important to not select the least expensive brands either - middle range professional brands are key to a professional's appearance!
Still feel overwhelmed? That is why we have created a beginning makeup kit complimentary for our Master Makeup Artist course students - hand selected by our industry professional educators, this kit will kickstart your education and career!

Our makeup kit includes some of our favorite brand name products (Make Up For Ever, Smashbox, Inglot, and more!) for you to experiment with and build upon, read the current list below (but we are always updating and improving, and if we find another product that we love - we will upgrade the kit and include it for you!):

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- MAKE UP FOR EVER ULTRA HD LIQUID FOUNDATION x 4 (retail value of $172)
- MAKE UP FOR EVER FULL COVER EXTREME CREAM CONCEALER (retail value of $102)
- MAKE UP FOR EVER EXCESSIVE LASH Arresting Volume Mascara (retail value of $25)
- MAKE UP FOR EVER AQUA XL WATERPROOF LIQUID LINER (retail value of $23)
- MAKE UP FOR EVER STEP1 SKIN EQUALIZER (retail value of $37)
- INGLOT High Gloss Lip Oil (retail value of $18)
- INGLOT Makeup Brush 31T (retail value of $15)
- INGLOT TRANSLUCENT LOOSE POWDER (retail value of $13)
- INGLOT AMC EYELINER GEL 77 (retail value of $17)
- INGLOT DURALINE (retail value of $14)
- SMASHBOX PUCKER UP LIPSTICK PALETTE (retail value of $24)
- SMASHBOX EYESHADOW Full Exposure Palette (retail value of $52)
- SMASHBOX Cover Shot: Eye Palette (retail value of $29)
- MEHRON SYNWAX (retail value of $10)
- IMAGIC CAMOUFLAGE COLOR CORRECTOR CREAM PALETTE (retail value of $12)
- PRO-LINE BLUSH PALETTE (retail value of $15)
- PRO-LINE Contour Blush Highlight Palette (retail value of $15)
- False Eyelashes (retail value of $12)
- GLITTER (retail value of $25)
- STRASS (retail value of $25)
- 22-PIECE SET: Professional Makeup Brush Set (retail value of $35)
- METAL PLATE WITH SPATULA (retail value of $10)

For those who are just starting their way into the world of makeup, it is important to start it with the right tools. We are always open to our students: write to us and we will figure out how to help you find the perfect products for your individual makeup kit!

Building Your Professional Makeup Kit

As a Makeup Artist, your professional makeup kit is the core of your work. This is where the magic comes from, it’s your practical tools for expression and of course the materials that will help you gain your source of income. If you’re a fresh graduate from a makeup course, the first step to becoming a successful Makeup Artist is to build (or expand on!) your own makeup kit.

Professional makeup kits take a long time to build and are a pretty serious investment. It takes a lot of time, research, and of course, trial and error. You have to try and see what fits your style and budget, but remember you spend money, you make money. Basically, don’t be afraid to invest. A good purchase will pay off in the long run. Like your portfolio, your kit will constantly grow and change.

Envision the bigger picture. Ask yourself the right questions: What type of makeup will you be doing? How will you carry the makeup? Will it travel? Visualize the kit, take a notebook and create your fantasy bag - your kit is a reflection of your unique artistry and the industry specialization you wish to focus on. Also, keep in mind that durability and versatility should apply to all of your investments.

Now let’s get started!

Step 1 The Bag

This one is a big one, as a Makeup Artist is always on the go. Set life, far away locations, personal homes, fashion shows -  the list goes on. Truth is that most of the time you will have to go somewhere for your job. 

In order to be efficient, not to over carry products, but also not be underprepared you need to ask yourself the right questions. Also take into consideration your usual form of transportation. It’s much easier to carry a larger kit if you are driving as opposed to using public transportation. Be smart, keep it clean, keep it organized.

What’s great is that nowadays you have so many options: train cases, tackle boxes, backpacks, professional makeup cases. The last ones can be great, but they can also be a bit pricey. Honestly, any piece of luggage can become an efficient kit holder with some work and imagination. Remember this has to work for you. You are the one that is in control.

Step 2  Brushes

Brushes are the bread and butter of your kit. They are your most important tool, and choosing the right ones is crucial for getting the job done. You can definitely choose to begin with a prepared brush set, but with a little bit of research you can create your own basic set that will be tailored for your style of application. 

Take into consideration materials: natural vs synthetic. Traditionally natural hair brushes are better for dry products/powder and they come in numerous varieties of types of hair with different attributes. Synthetic ones are best for cream or liquid products. Again do your research. What’s important in the end is that the brush you choose gets the job done.

Just a quick list: make sure you have face brushes, eye brushes, lip brushes, and cheek brushes.

Step 3 Skin Care/Skin Prep

As a beginner, building your first skin care bag is a very important step. Spend some money here. You will probably work with a multitude of skin tones and complexions. You should have a variety that works for all skin types, but be careful to have something even for the most sensitive of skins.

Step 4 Face

Liquid Foundation: A range of 5-6 shades should do the trick at the beginning. This is definitely an important buy as not all your clients will have the same skin tone and you will want the foundation match to be perfect and their skin to be flawless.

Concealer: Light, medium, and darker shades – dependent upon the color tone of the skin on your client.

Powder: In order to set the foundation. Powder application color should be translucent (no color) so it applies to all skin tones.

Step 5 Eyes

Eye Shadow: Have a good color selection, in a different range of colors, shades, mattes and shimmers. Professional palettes are a great investment.

Eyeliner: You need to have a good combination of pencils and liquids/gels in staple colors black and brown! Get fancy later!

Mascara: Again, black and brown mascara for clients with different tones and desired makeup techniques.

Brows: Powders and pencils in different shades of brown for filling and shaping.

Bonus: Fake Eyelashes - if you feel like you need them, stock up on them. You only use them once so find an affordable option.

Step 6 Lips

Lip Conditioner/Balm: A basic balm is all you need to start. Remember, a lip oil and lip scrub are a lifesaver for days when your client has very dry lips. This will allow your lip application to go on smoothly.

Lipstick: Here is another item where you can save money with palettes. Singular lipsticks can be hard to reach in your travel bag. With a good palette, you can mix colors and create the desired that you want for each individual client. 

Lip Liner: A rage of lip pencils to match your lipstick selection. Keep your pencils sharp and sanitize them after each use.

Lip Gloss: If your client wants a glossier lip vs. matte. Think Clear (which can go over any lipstick which makes it the holy grail of lip gloss), and basic (think red, pink, orange), neutral, and later you can add bright colors, metallic and darker colors.

Step 7 Cheeks

Blush: A pre-made palette should do the trick, around 6 shades that have varying degrees of warmth – you will use this to create the perfect blush color based on individual skin tone.

Bronzer: One to two universal bronzers (for a lighter complexion and darker complexion). If you are really on a budget you can also substitute by using the darker shades from the blush palette.

Step 8 Miscellaneous

Last but not least, here is everything that will make your life easier and cleaner (sanitiziation in Makeup Artistry is incredibly important in your professional kit!): makeup remover, disposable mascara wands, cotton balls and swabs, face cleanser, face wipes, brush cleaner and hand sanitizer. 

There it is - a small guide to building your own kit and starting your makeup career! Having a base, researching and testing your own products will help you build your unique makeup artist kit that will set you apart.