Makeup Artist Schools in South Carolina

If you find that you want to start a career in makeup, where can you go to develop the professional skills you'll need to excel on the job?

Or if you just love makeup and want to get better at it, where can you find some guidance?

Below, we've got a list of your education options, a quick chat about whether or not makeup artists needs licenses, and a compilation of all the beauty schools and makeup artist schools in South Carolina. ​

Your Educational Options​

Basically, there are five ways that you can learn about makeup:

1. Enroll in a Makeup Artistry Program. These are makeup schools that focus *only* on makeup, and provide very specific instruction on how to work as a makeup artist. As a student, you'll learn a number of different skills, including how to:

  • Apply makeup in different styles (ie, avant-garde vs. wedding vs. clean vs. live performance, etc);
  • Select products and materials, and determine how to build a functional makeup kit;
  • Work with creative professionals (like photographers, creative directors, fashion editors, buyers, and so on) and determine a shoot's "look"; and
  • How to network with industry professionals and generate new business.

That can be the tip of the iceberg, really--high-end makeup schools provide a really in-depth training period for makeup-artists-to-be!

These are a great option if you want to become a freelance makeup artist, and focus on working with models, actors/actresses, brides, etc.

2. Find A Cosmetology School. Whereas there are only a few makeup schools, there are plenty of cosmetology colleges and beauty schools, and that's part of their draw. They provide a tried-and-true way to enter the beauty business, and give you all the basics to start a career in the beauty business. Whereas makeup schools "go deep" with makeup artistry, cosmetology schools provide an introduction to a LOT of different subjects. As a student, you'll be taught how to:

  • Style hair as per client instructions (that's difficult, and it's a great skill to have);
  • Color, shape, and texturize different hair types;
  • Provide different styles of manicures and pedicures;
  • Come up with skin care routines for clients with special needs; and
  • Apply makeup to clients with different facial structures, skin types, and dermal imperfections.

Cosmetology isn't as "glamorous" as makeup school--or, some of the high-end makeup schools, anyway--but MANY makeup artists get their start in a cosmetology program, and go on to fantastic and exciting careers.

3. Private Sessions with a Professional. This can be a super-fun way to learn about makeup. Instead of signing up for a school, schedule private coaching sessions with a makeup artist in your area of South Carolina. You'll get some face-time with a pro, learn about the things you *want* to learn about, and actually get to talk to someone who makes money as a makeup artist.

4. Live Intensives. Also referred to as workshops, intensives are another great way to learn about makeup. Most workshops deal with a particular topic like "how to do bridal makeup as a side business" or "how to use airbrush techniques," and they're usually pretty affordable. You can check on websites like Yelp and EventBrite and Meetup for intensives in cities like Columbia, Charleston and North Charleston, Greenville, and Hilton Head.

5. Last But Not Least--Look Online! You're all over this one, obviously, because you found your way to our website! That said, there are thousands of really helpful tutorials online. There's a lot pretty lousy videos, but try to sift through everything to find the hidden gems.

Makeup Artist Schools in South Carolina

Which Option Is Right For You?

Each of the options above has its pros and cons. Here's how it shakes loose:​

​Makeup School--Cons: Pricey! Very, very pricey. It's not uncommon for classes to cost $10,000 or more for a full-time, six-to-ten month program. Also, when you graduate, you will not be able to get any kind of state license (and that can be important; we'll talk about that below).

Makeup School--Pros: You get a one-of-a-kind education, and it's a great start to a great career as a makeup artist.

Cosmetology School--Cons: You'll get introduced to the beauty business and the techniques you'll need, but you won't learn too much about makeup. It's mostly information about hairstyling, with some other lessons thrown in.

Cosmetology School--Pros: You WILL be able to get a license after you graduate, and having a degree in cosmetology can help "set you apart" from other makeup artists, and when you're competing for jobs, that can be a very good thing!

Private Sessions--Cons: It can be costly to pay for all the sessions you'd need to learn all about being a professional makeup artist. It's a good way to supplement your beauty education, but it's not a great way to learn absolutely everything you'll need to know on the job.

Private Sessions--Pros: It's a short-term, low-cost way to learn about makeup and get some face-to-face time with someone who's living the dream. We actually think everyone should do this at some point, in addition to formal training.​

Live Intensives--Cons: These don't happen every day! You might have to wait a while for a workshop to roll through town.

Live Intensives--Pros: They're fun! And affordable! And they can really introduce you to areas of makeup you didn't know much about.

Learning about makeup online--nothing but pros!

What Kind Of License Will I Need?​

In order to work at a beauty salon--in any capacity--you'll need a license. So if you want to do makeup in a salon, you'll need to get a cosmetologist license (or an estheticians license--they're also allowed to apply makeup a salon or spa setting). It can be worth getting a cosmetology license, because if your makeup career ever slows down, you can find temporary work in a salon.

As for licenses that are specific to makeup artists--we've read everything we could find and consulted the South Carolina Board of Cosmetology site, but we can't find anything that talks about the licensing of makeup artists. And, while we know many makeup artists who practice as unlicensed *freelance* makeup artists (that is, they work with brides/actors/models and other folks, and *not* in salons), that may eventually change--it's likely that South Carolina will, eventually, become a lot more strict about licensing of makeup artists.

Should you have questions, you can consult the South Carolina Board at (803) 896-4588 or boardinfo@llr.sc.gov. They have the last say when it comes to beauty careers in South Carolina, so if you've got questions, they're the ones who have answers!

Makeup Instruction in South Carolina​

According to our last search, we could find no makeup schools in South Carolina. That's the bad news.

The good news is that you don't really need an education from a makeup school to begin a career as a makeup artist. In fact, many high-earning makeup artists got their professional start at a cosmetology program. If you'd like to go that route, here's a list of cosmetology schools you can contact. And--don't be bashful! Let them know that you'd like to learn as much as you can about makeup.

We hope this helps! Come back and drop by when you've become a world-famous MUA! :)​

Carolina College of Hair Design
3420 Clemson Boulevard
Anderson, SC 29621
(864) 332-0031

Carolina College of Hair Design
Innsbruck Mall at 85 Tunnel Road #16
Asheville, NC 28805
(828) 253-2875

Technical College of the Lowcountry
921 Ribaut Road
Beaufort, SC 29902
(843) 525-8211

LeGrand Institute of Cosmetology
2418 Broad Street
Camden, SC 29020
(803) 425-8449

Cosmetic Arts Institute II
1131 Savannah Highway
Charleston, SC 29407
(843) 549-8587

Esthetics International School
10 Clusters Court
Columbia, SC 29210
(803) 798-8611

Kenneth Shuler School of Cosmetology & Nails
449 Saint Andrews Road
Columbia, SC 29210
(803) 772-6042

Paul Mitchell The School — Columbia
700 Gervais Street
Columbia, SC 29201
(803) 772-2232

Regency Beauty School — Columbia Campus
260T Harbison Boulevard
Columbia, SC 29212
(800) 787-6456

Remington College — Columbia Campus
607 Bush River Road
Columbia, SC 29210
(803) 265-4398

Virginia College — Cosmetology Program
7201 Two Notch Road
Columbia, SC 29223
(803) 509-7100

Carolina College of Cosmetology
1600 Elizabeth Street
Conway, SC 29526
(843) 248-2413

Kenneth Shuler School of Cosmetology & Nails
Garners Ferry Road Campus
7474 Garners Ferry Road
Columbia, SC 29209
(803) 776-9100

Denmark Technical College — Cosmetology Program
1126 Solomon Blatt Boulevard
Denmark, SC 29042
(803) 793-5176

Upstate College of Cosmetology
1727 East Main Street
Easley, SC 29640
(864) 269-6881

Kenneth Shuler School of Cosmetology & Nails
Florence Campus
2443 West Lucas Street
Florence, SC 29501
(843) 679-3778

Carolina College of Hair Design
38 Liberty Lane
Greenville, SC 29607
(864) 235-6792

Kenneth Shuler School of Cosmetology & Nails
Greenville Campus
3528-A Highway 153
Greenville, SC 29611
(864) 269-6886

Paul Mitchell The School — Greenville
1215 Woodruff Road
Greenville, SC 29607
(864) 640-8111

Charzanne Beauty College
1549 South Carolina 72
Greenwood, SC 29649
(864) 223-7321

Williamsburg Technical College
601 Martin Luther King Junior Avenue
Kingstree, SC 29556
(843) 355-4165

Trident Technical College
1001 South Live Oak Drive
Monck’s Corner, SC 29461
(843) 899-8033

Kenneth Shuler School of Cosmetology & Nails
North Augusta Campus
1113 Knox Avenue
North Augusta, SC 29841
(803) 278-1200

Paul Mitchell The School — Charleston
4952 Centre Pointe Drive
North Charleston, SC 29418
(843) 725-0246

Virginia College
6185 Rivers Avenue
North Charleston, SC 29406
(843) 614-4300

Jolei’s Hair Institute
203 West Main Street
Olanta, SC 29114
(843) 396-9010

Kenneth Shuler School of Cosmetology & Nails
Rock Hill Campus
2383 Cherry Road
Rock Hill, SC 29732
(803) 328-5166

International School of Beauty
7708 Asheville Highway
Spartanburg, SC 29303
(864) 804-6094

Palmetto Beauty School
2601 East Main Street
Spartanburg, SC 29307
(864) 579-2550

Regency Beauty Institute — Spartanburg Campus
225 West Blackstock Road
Spartanburg, SC 29301
(800) 787-6456

Virginia College — Cosmetology
8150 Warren H. Abernathy Highway
Spartanburg, SC 29301
(864) 504-3200

Sumter Beauty College
921 Carolina Avenue
Sumter, SC 29150
(803) 773-7311

Columbia Academy of Cosmetology
1221 Sunset Boulevard
West Columbia, SC 29169
(803) 796-9986

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