As most know, I'm a freelance makeup artist. Not a free makeup artist.
I haven't put forth much efforts to expand my business because I wanted to get other things settled with before I hustle - especially around times like this when it's prom and wedding season! But for now I'm not putting myself out there, anything I get is word of mouth but I'm not actively pursuing any makeup jobs.
I'm slowly buying things for my kit here and there with whatever leftover money I have - it's not cheap, and when I do find cheap things I make sure it's things I'll use on my own face, but in the end - it's my own money being spent regardless of how little or how much I spend on it. I have a lot of things set in my kit apart from buying foundation and concealer, but I digress.
So I tend to do friend's makeup for free ONLY as a birthday gift or how I see fit. The friends I do makeup for free are ones who tend to do a lot of things for me, are generous in terms of paying for me when I go out or whatever so with them I feel bad for charging and I don't feel right. It's very few of them anyways, so to me it doesn't feel like any waste of time or loss if I do the favor. Or it's free if I ask them to help me practice on them and take some photos. Only exceptions and I had to mention this because I know some makeup artist that will absolutely charge no matter who or what. I will not and that's a personal choice. I see no right in wrong in this but in other things I do as I'll mention later.
Anyways, while I do this for some friends - I refuse to do it for all. Just because I am your friend and I know how to do your makeup does not mean I will do it for free or at a cheap price. My pricing is low in general because I don't have all necessary things for a complete look (foundation/concealer) and also because I rarely do it right now so I'm not in demand and I'm completely start-up. I start at a reasonable $20 for eyes/face basics and $25 with lashes. I charge more with distance/wedding. While MAC charges $50 and that goes towards buying their products - so I see my pricing reasonable. As I grow, I will definitely charge more - don't get me wrong, but as for now I'm keeping it low.
What kills me is that people who are freelancing are selling themselves for cheaper. HELLA CHEAP!
I lost jobs to girls who were charging $10 for eyes and even $5 per person. FIVE FUCKING DOLLARS! I mean, I love a good deal and all but you know how much this hurts someone who is actually trying to make a living and profession out of this? Some aren't even freelancing or a professional, some girls are good at doing makeup and decide to do it on whoever that ask and for $5 or even free. Killing me.
I close friend was even doing looks for free at times and I would get so mad at her. It was her own MAC collection she would use, her time and stuff and she'd do it for free. She's just too nice and I kept telling her, "if you do these favors so often - people are gunna take advantage of you and you gotta get compensated, regardless." And it still happens, she's no push over so a lot of girls go to her because she either won't charge or will do it cheaply. And no - a "free" meal does not compensate it. Might as well just pay me or I'll order hella shit.
I got a few offers so far for prom, one being a good friend of mine and I've done her makeup before for free in return she'd get all her cousins to pay when I do their makeup. Well, all those hoochies went to some lady for the fan-fucking-tastic deal of five dollars so last minute I was out of a good job because competition had a better price. This same friend just text me asking if I can do her sister because the person she knew would be busy. No problem - just pay up.
I got a response of:
"Whaaaat?! that's too much... just for eyes?".
Sorry, can't lower it - same price I'm charging another girl.
"I can do her foundations and no lashes!"
Yeah, still the same price.
"I'll get back to you later."
I was going to ask her how much she thought for kicks but honestly I was so mad I didn't even bother. I have a feeling she's going to ask our other friend - knowing her ass will do it for free.
If applying makeup was so easy and cheap - don't you think everyone will be able to do it flawlessly? Whatever "skills" I have took time to study, time to master and money to get there. Don't care if you're my friend or cousin or boss... PAY ME! And most times you are paying for quality. While I question some "freelancers" work out there - majority are really good at their job and we do it because we love and I like making someone feel really pretty. Scouts honor, one of the best feelings. But if your trade/skill were house painting - would you do it for free? HELL NAH. Nope, sweating and shit painting walls for free. Pfft. Think about it...
Don't sell yourself for so cheap because you're ruining things for makeup artist in general out there, make a profit - either way, whatever money you make...some of it goes back to replenishing or building your kit. Be choosy of who you do favors for. If they really were your friends they'd be supportive of it and know what your time is worth. And like I said - I will order hella shit to eat to compensate for that makeover. I ain't playin'.