Is the Makeup Artist for my wedding, ripping me off?
I could end this article here, but I have a feeling you would like some more explaining.
Have you ever wondered why vendors charge so much as soon as you mention the word “wedding”? If you were simply planning your birthday, it would be so much cheaper, right? Right! Well, the fact of the matter is, you aren’t planning your birthday. You’re planning your WEDDING. Which, to most people, is a far bigger deal than your birthday. And I can only imagine that you would expect a far better and more personalised service on your Wedding day than if it was just any old other event.
Everyone has a completely different budget when it comes to their wedding, so remember to consider this when planning your day. As BookMoreBrides explain in this educational article Ten Things Couples Need To Know About The Wedding Industry That The Media Will Never Tell You: “If you only have $10,000 to spend on your wedding, we can’t make it look like you spent $100,000 no matter what we do”, so make sure to spend the money in the areas that MATTER TO YOU!
This rings true for ALL areas of your wedding. If you’re only budgeting $500 for a photographer, rather than the average $5000 for a photographer, than you cannot expect the results of that $5000 photographer.
SO, if you’re like most brides and only want to look the absolute best on your wedding day, remember your makeup artist plays a main role in how you will look on your big day. Your makeup artist, however, is one of the vendors who doesn’t usually charge a wedding surcharge. Most artists charge the same price for each person at a wedding, as they do for an individual event makeup (do keep in mind that some artists may add a cost on to the brides makeup, to compensate for the extra care and time spent).
When you’re choosing your makeup artist, don’t be discouraged if they charge more than Joe Bloggs down the road that uses her mothers 20yr old Mary Kay foundation, and only charges $50. If you’ve been following a specific artists work for a while, and you are set on using them for your wedding, contact them at the initial stages of planning, and get them to do a personalised quote for you, so you are aware of the costs you need to incorporate in to your budget. Don’t contact them after you’ve blown your entire budget on an extravagant Vera Wang gown and Christian Louboutin pumps, and expect they will cater to you at the cheapest amount possible. I see this happening more and more, please do not expect your makeup artist (photographer, event stylist or ANYONE for that matter) to cost match or greatly reduce their service price simply because you don’t want to spend the extra money. Remember: Quality over quantity! The QUALITY of makeup artists, also, varies greatly – so this will be reflected in their pricing. You have people who are just beginning, more experienced artists, and the people who are the very best in the industry, who will obviously charge at a higher rate. Basically, you get what you pay for.
Remember, these people are providing services to YOU, and are doing their JOBS. Put your shoe on the other foot, and consider if it were you running your own business. When considering the costs of your services, you must consider (from a makeup artists point of view, specifically):
- The amount of money you spend on updating your techniques and keeping current with trends
- The professional quality tools you use ie brushes, disposables etc
- The professional quality product you use
- The quality of work you produce
- Studio running costs
- The costs of insurance, advertising, website costs etc
- The amount of time you spend doing quotes, invoicing, attending to enquiries, researching suitable products for people with allergies or special requests, packing your kit, on the road to your venue, finding parking, paying for parking and tolls where applicable (this is where travel &/or parking/toll fees will be invoiced), setting up, hanging around for touch ups, or the extra time spent waiting for your client to finish tying up loose ends on phone calls etc that delays the amount of time they are in your seat
It is all TIME, and not just the time that you’re sitting in the makeup chair. And it is someones job. Everyone deserves to get paid for their job, right? Vendors/MUAs have bills and living expenses, the same as anyone else.
I understand that not everyone can see the art in makeup artistry – and it “all looks the same”, but trust me, the quality of work varies significantly!
If the makeup side of your wedding, really is not important to you, and you really cannot determine the difference between a good makeup artist and an AWESOME makeup artist, or the quality of makeup, then yes, definitely go for your budget end MUAs! But if you are very particular, and only want to look the very best for your event AND your photos, then please do remember that good quality makeup artists, come at a price – they’re not just “trying to rip you off”, they’re providing a high end service. Don’t respond with “But I can get it from ‘x person’ for so much cheaper”, if that is the case, and that fits a bit better within your budget, then definitely go with ‘x person’.
At the end of the day, this isn’t a hobby for most, it is their job. Their income. Their business. You can’t go to Coles and expect them to halve your bill, because you spent too much money at the nail salon. You can’t buy a pair of shoes if you don’t have the money. Therefore, you can’t expect a service, if you’re not willing to pay for it.
Hope this makes a little sense, here, I have included a very rough idea on what you can expect to pay for makeup services.
Graduate artists: $60-$70pp
Experienced artists: $80-$120pp
Well sought after industry professionals: $150-$300+pp – and in some cases upward of $1000pp for some celebrity artists.
Travel fees are common for artists who have to travel beyond 25km of their CBD and are charged per km, and again vary between each individual business.
**These prices are loosely based on the average makeup artists pricing per person (Brisbane area), and is to be used as a guide ONLY. As stated above, please note that all makeup artists have different rates, inclusions and terms and conditions. Please consult your personal makeup artist directly for any further advice, prices or quotes etc. Average costs will also vary greatly depending on the State/City the makeup artist resides ie a small rural town mua may not have the same average cost as a major city mua.