Tuesday, November 6, 2012


A couple of months ago I was asked to be on Illusions Beauty BlogTalk radio talk show. I will include a link below for you guys to listen.  The subject—“Glam Squad”.  We discussed a lot including my love for NY and others loathing of NY hahaha.   We also discussed folks using the title Celebrity Makeup Artist. I was recently emailed the question what makes a person a celebrity makeup artist? It’s a title that has been used as much as one drinks water these days.  Here’s my take on the title and why – you shouldn’t use it unless its true

You know you’re a celebrity makeup artist when:

·         At least 90 percent of your clientele are “Celebrities”

·         Celebrities have you on speed dial—and actually call you

·         You’re booked at least 3 months in advance

·         You have amassed at least 3 steady celebrities

·         When you don’t work for free or half rate just to get the gig

·         When the majority of your income comes from working with Celebrities (IE the gigs pay your bills)

·         When you don’t have to explain who you are working with –and what show they’re from

·         They actually pay your full day rate and happy to do so


·         you luck up and get a gig with one or two celebrities

·         your resume reads like a “WHO'S THAT? instead of a “who’s who”

·         You don’t make the majority of your money from  celebrities

·         They are not your day to day client

·         You worked with them once and they never called you again—though they may have promised to in the future

·         You did the gig for free or discounted your rate

Any of the latter fit into your category then remove “Celebrity” Makeup Artist from your Title

Lets-me explain
When you use the word "CELEBRITY"—before makeup artist you are saying this is the way I make a living-understand? Like Bridal Makeup Artist. I know there is a certain cache to being a celebrity artist I get that, but if you don’t have the credentials to back it up you do yourself a huge disservice. 

THE Pros and the CON
The Pro--you’re a PROFESSIONAL MAKEUP ARTIST with a good site, good solid work—bravo!! You’ve gotten the opportunity to fill in for Mariah Careys makeup artists cause she was sick.  You think-honey I have arrived.  You do the gig—Well.  You rush to change your site and business cards with the new title CELEBRITY MAKEUP ARTIST.   CON!!!!!  Why? She’s your first (she could be your fourth) celebrity you’ve touched, Mariah isn’t your client so she will not be paying your rent. You can put it down on your makeup artist resume and dream of more fabulous gigs to come your way.    

When I read bios/resumes of “celebrity makeup artists”  sometimes there isn’t any celebrity list, just name dropping to increase their cache or so they think.  It either tells me that you either lucked up and got a cool gig (that has definitely happened to me and major congrats to you) or you assisted someone and didn’t give credit everywhere—and believe me I know about the latter and how that error can bit you in the ass.  Either way sorry to tell you, you are not a celebrity makeup artist. 

 Think, if you’re going to apply for gigs from assisting to counter to anything in between they will ask you way more invasive questions then a simply name drop.  You don’t want to be caught out there with an answer filled with hesitation 
The interview goes (of a gig you really want)
 “I see you’re a celebrity makeup artist, fabulous- so give me a list of celebrities you’ve worked with and what was it for?” How was it to work with Mariah, how did you handle their agent/manager?  I know X was her makeup artist are you her replacement?  How much was the job? Who called you?  You reply “Well I’ve (hum) actually (uh uh) worked w her once (Huh-Ohhhhhhh)  and a friend (huh) of a friend referred me and I didn't get paid
Their reply "oh, ok so tell me about the others you have listed?"---your reply "sound of crickets"  If you think no one will ever delve deeper you’re wrong.  Seriously, why embarrass yourself?
Unless your clients are like:  Sam Fine (every black  female celebrity I can think of) , Billy B (Pink, Sharon Stone, Lady Gaga), Mylah Morales (Rihana) , Reggie Wells(Oprah like no other ) , Frances Tolot (from Madonna to  Beyonce), Sharon Gault (Madonna Britney, Christina Justine etc)  and countless other fabulous artists you are just embarrassing yourself. THEY ARE CELEBRITY MAKEUP ARTIST. They have paid their dues, worked their craft and earned the clients they have. 

It has taken me years to put down the word “Celebrity" in my title list. For me I normally like my descriptions to read Beauty, Editorial, Fashion, Runway, High Def, 3D, Celebrity Makeup Artist and Educator—the title would be longer(lol) or a simple favorite of mine is the best, Makeup Artist.  Being a Celebrity makeup artist is not my ONLY means of income. For me I do love the total sum of what makes me a makeup artist.

If you think you’re fooling the masses with that title, you’re not. What is so wrong with being a fabulous Makeup Artist who has worked on a few Celebs? Not one Thing!  Believe me the industry will always ask the who, what, where, and why, you’ve worked with, and the industry as big as it seems is very small especially in the celebrity world.  Why pad your resume or title if you don't have too? What’s the rush to being something that you’re not? If you do get the  celebrity gigs, congrats you are on your way--build your clients do great work and more will come. 
Believe me I know J 

If you read this and get insulted then you have totally missed the whole meaning behind the article


  1. Love it Deshawn! Raw, UNcut, and true.. who can get offended by truth?! Thank you for all you do.

  2. This article needs to be published EVERYWHERE lol...I will be sharing this!

  3. Absolutely right,great post Deshawn!!

  4. On point! thanks for breaking it down:)

  5. Great post! Love your breakdown of it all. So very very true in what you said. Being a newbie I am always reading other MUA's bio's and they use this title very loosely. take care!!

  6. Thanks everyone really appreciate you reading this Just something that was on my mind and bugging the hell out of me lol

  7. love this soooo much, thank you for writing it. Jo xox

  8. Hi, Deshawn. Great article. Same goes for hairstylist & photographers... Be well!

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    ", then Khoobsurat will be right choice for you. Pooja Goel is a world renowned Celebrity Makeup Artist in Delhi. She is the founder of Khoobsurat Beauty Salon. Having tremendous experience in this domain, she knows very well how to provide you attractive look.


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