Making the Right Choice

Choosing the best makeup course can be daunting, with so many schools, colleges, academies and studios offering “MUA” courses today, it’s certainly confusing for any aspiring Make-up Artist.

Here’s some brutally honest advice on what you need to know about your training provider –

  1. Choose an established trainer – everybody seems to be tagging MUA or academy onto their status today, there are no regulations, no licenses required to run a makeup course…….anyone can do it. Make sure YOUR training provider has been doing it a long time!
  2. Good range of experienced tutors – a good makeup course should have a range of different, professional, experienced tutors who are still actively working within the industry YOU want to go into. You need a large range of skills and information to be good at what you do…..1 or 2 tutors will limit your learning experience. Your tutors are also your first contacts and networks into industry, make sure they’re well established.
  3. Work experience – any trainer that PROMISES work experience is either lying or delusional! Let me break this down…….when we send you out on work experience, you go with OUR reputation on the line…….we have to know that you are ready and able and sometimes this doesn’t happen whilst you are training. It’s absolute career suicide for any working Make-up Artist worth their salt to send anyone and everyone out on work experience. You can’t put a singer on stage who’s paralysed with stage fright. An honest trainer will and should be able to place you on work experience when you both feel YOU are ready and a suitable opportunity comes up. This may happen after your training but should never be PROMISED!
  4. Graduate success – you MUST be able to see a long varied list of graduate achievements/ work credits.
  5. Testimonials– you MUST be able to read graduate testimonials and NEVER accept one liners, edited from a bigger testimonial. This only gives you half a picture.
  6. Speak to the graduates – an honest trainer will have access to a long list of graduates that you should be able to converse with. Personal expectations vary, so don’t be put off by the odd minor negative, as long as it’s not horrendous, some negatives will tell you your feedback is authentic and not just done by selected people.
  7. Recognition – is your school recognised by INDUSTRY? I’m not talking followers on Facebook here, I’m meaning do industry professionals and relevant businesses know of and trust your training provider. If you’re planning on a serious career in fashion/ TV & Film Martha’s Makeup Academy may not quite cut it as a recognised trainer. Do your research!!!!!
  8. Standards – is your training provider offering courses that meet industry standards/  requirements and insurance necessities. Industry standards are constantly changing, as should the courses your trainer is offering.
  9. Time – OK, let’s be real here. A skilled trade takes time to learn, a multi skilled trade takes even longer. You CANNOT and WILL NOT learn a skilled profession in 2 days or 1 week!!!!! If you see the words fast track, step away! There is no such thing and any training provider offering a “fast track” course is completely disrespecting every professional working Make-up Artist out there!!!
  10. Cost – the cost of your course is a business investment. If it’s cheap…..there’s a reason. A good established trainer offering multi skilled courses with kits, resources, taught by professionals cannot offer a budget priced course! You get what you pay for!
  11. Location – the location of your school is irrelevant! As long as it provides good facilities and resources and isn’t located in the Amazonian Jungle. Many students will relocate for the duration of their course and an exceptional school will have students attending from all over the world. Locating next to a film studio does not necessarily mean they have associations and privileges with their well known neighbours (some do) but sadly this isn’t the case of all!!! Again, do your research!!!!
  12. The learning environment – A good range of facilities and resources is essential to get the most out of your learning experience. A good school will be set up the same as a professional industry makeup room, which tends to be practical. Be wary of the seduction of decorative surrounds here! Whilst chandeliers and trendy accessories look very pretty, just be careful you’re not buying into the decorative allure of the place. Most serious providers will have multiple clean, functional training areas, focusing on practicality and optimal learning.
  13. Visit your trainer – you absolutely MUST visit your training provider. A swish website can be done by anyone. You must visit during class hours, be able to experience a class in action, talk to the students and tutors and be given honest and detailed information by the person showing you around. Use your gut instinct!
  14. Future work – any trainer that PROMISES future work is a big fat liar!!!! NO ONE can do this, it’s absolutely absurd to be able to offer or promise work for the future of every student. Walk away if you see/ hear this, its total bullshit!!!!!
  15. Social media  – OK, this generally goes 2 ways here…..a trainer with over a hundred thousand followers is a red flag. A trainer with a few hundred followers is also a red flag! Jesus had 12 followers, Hitler had millions!!!! Please use your noggin here…….nuff said!
  16. Aftercare – OK, once again anyone can tell you pretty much anything on this subject…..you need proof here!!! The best way to do this is ask the graduates? Most good trainers will have social media groups/ forums for their graduates, an honest trainer will NOT object to you accessing these and asking open questions to ALL their graduates.
  17. Expectations – building a successful skilled career takes time. I always tell students that you can expect to keep investing for the first 3 years. This includes your initial training, kit development, being available for work experience and lots of travelling about. You need to be realistic. I always say, if you go into this with good intentions and you’re constantly pushing forward you really can’t go wrong. Please don’t listen to anyone who glamorises or makes it seem easy. It takes an extremely focused dedicated person to succeed in any profession. It ain’t easy but god damn it’s worth it!
  18. Research – do your research on all the trainers you’re interested in!!!!

Good luck young Padawans! 😘

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