Makeup Artist Schools in New Mexico

Are you wondering where makeup artists learn their skills? Would you like to know if there are any makeup artist schools in New Mexico? The post below has EVERYTHING you need to know to become a makeup PRO. Let's go to it.

Different Types of Training​

Most professionals learn the trade through one or more of the following educational choices:

Cosmetology Colleges. This is perhaps the most common way to enter the field. A cosmetology school will provide you with a full understanding of the beauty field, and upon completion of the program, you'll be able to style hair in dozens of ways, use chemicals to color hair, use various processes to curl or straighten hair, apply manicures, create skin care routines, and use different makeup techniques.

  • Positives: Classes are usually affordable, and a community college will often have a cosmetology program for a couple thousand dollars. Private institutions may charge more, but there's a wide range of costs, and you can usually find a school in your price range. The other positive is a big one: after you complete the program, you'll be able to get a cosmetology degree, and that will allow you to work as a makeup artist or beauty specialist in any New Mexico spa or salon.
  • Negatives: Cosmetology colleges don't go into a lot of detail where makeup artistry is concerned. If you want to become a professional makeup artist, a cosmetology school is a good start, but it won't teach you everything you need to know. You'll still need to round out your education by going to workshops or getting private lessons.

Makeup Artist Schools. While cosmetology schools don't go into great detail about makeup application, makeup schools do. They teach you how to actually *be* a makeup artist: you'll learn how work with color theory and determine a client's best look; you'll begin to put together a professional-grade makeup kit; you'll get guidance on how to assemble an impressive portfolio; you'll learn how to work with photographers, and the important relationship that photographers and makeup artists have; and finally you'll learn MANY different application techniques and styles.

  • Negatives: Makeup schools can get VERY expensive. It's normal for a makeup school to cost up to $15,000 or more for a full-time program. The other negative is also important to note: after you graduate, you will not be able to get a New Mexico cosmetology license. Depending on what kind of career you want to have, a license can be important. We'll talk about this more a little further down the page.
  • Positives: You'll get an excellent education on makeup, and meet like-minded students who are aspiring to successful careers in the makeup business. Creating a network on beauty professionals is super-important, and we've written a couple of posts about it (so be sure to check those out!).

Private Lessons from An Expert. This can be a very fun option. Look up a makeup artist near you, and simply call them and ask for a lesson! If the artist doesn't already offer private lesson (and many do, because it's a great way to bring in extra cash), you can negotiate a rate for classes (and that can be your first experience as a business person!).

  • Positives: First of all, private lessons can be a lot of fun! And, if you have friends or family members who also want to expand their knowledge of makeup, you can make it into a group outing. Not only that, but you can ask the artist about his or her business experience, and learn about the technical side of running a small business. And, perhaps most importantly, lessons from a working artist can help you develop skills you may not have gotten elsewhere.
  • Negatives: Private lessons are a great way to learn a couple of different techniques, but it's not a substitute for a beauty education. Also, if there are no artists in your immediate area, you may need to travel to a metropolitan area with a larger population, such as Albuquerque, Las Cruces, Santa Fe, Roswell, or Rio Rancho.

Local Intensives. These are another short-term way to build your expertise. Very often, an artist will host a single class or a small number of classes in a local hotel, conference center, beauty salon, or commercial space. The topic may be broad ("how to apply makeup") or specific ("how to use airbrush makeup"). You can usually find upcoming classes on sites like Yelp, Meetup, Craig’s List, and Event Brite.

  • Positives: Intensives aren't really a big commitment, and they usually have a pretty reasonable price tag (some are less than a hundred dollars, and the most expensive ones we've seen are week-long ones for about $1,000). They're another great way to get introduced to the business side of makeup.
  • Negatives: Intensives don't happen all the time, and you may get stuck waiting for one to come to your nearest metropolitan center. And, the better you get, the less likely it is that an intensive will actually teach you something you don't know.

So, which is the right option for you? That depends! If you'd like to become a full-time freelance makeup artist, a makeup school or a beauty school is probably the best option. If you want to be able to work in salons and spas (and that kind of work will provide you a LOT of career security), then a cosmetology school is definitely your best bet. If you're just looking to pick up a little bit of knowledge because you love makeup and it's a great hobby, the private lessons and intensives are the way to go.

Makeup Artist Schools in New Mexico

How Artists Are Licensed​

Most people know that in order to become hair stylist, barber, esthetician, or manicurist, you need to get a license. But what about professional makeup artists? Do they need a license?

We consulted the New Mexico Board of Cosmetologists website and we couldn't find any laws or forms that discussed the makeup arts. Here's how we believe it plays out:

If you plan on being a makeup artist on a *freelance* basis--that is, if you want to work on models, musicians, actors, performers, brides, etc. on a freelance basis and not in a New Mexico beauty salon or New Mexico spa--then it doesn't appear that you need a license. This also applies to most makeup counters--most salespeople at makeup counters do not have a license.

If, however, you want to do makeup in a salon or spa, or work as any type of beautician in a salon or spa, then you'll need to get a cosmetology license from the state of New Mexico.

Should you have any questions, you should definitely reach out to the Board--they are the ones who enforce the state's cosmetology rules and issue beauty licenses--so you'll want to call them before making any career decisions.​

New Mexico Makeup Programs​

There are three fantastic makeup schools in New Mexico:​

The Vanity Makeup Studio
3205 Silver Avenue SE
Albuquerque, NM
(505) 710-6802

Callas Beauty Institute
1001 Golf Course Road
Rio Rancho, NM 87124
(505) 554-6537

Santa Fe Community College
6401 Richards Avenue
Santa Fe, NM 87508
(505) 428-100

There are also a number of great cosmetology programs you can attend to kick off your makeup artistry career:

The Aveda Institute of New Mexico
1816 Central Ave
Albuquerque, NM

Adorabella Beauty Academy
800 Juan Tabo Boulevard Northeast
Albuquerque, NM 87123
(505) 554-1053

Central New Mexico Community College
525 Buena Vista Drive Southeast
Albuquerque, NM 87106
(505) 224-3000

Toni & Guy Hair Academy
2201 Uptown Loop Road Northeast
Albuquerque, NM 87110
(505) 842-8767

Tony & Guy Hairdressing Academy
2201 Uptown Loop Road NE
Albuquerque, NM 87110
(505) 866-4489

Northern New Mexico College
921 North Paseo De Onate
Espanola, NM 87532
(505) 747-2100

University of New Mexico — Gallup Campus
705 Gurley Avenue
Gallup, NM 87301
(505) 863-7500

Vista College
850 North Telshore Boulevard
Las Cruces, NM 88011
(866) 442-4197

Luna Community College
366 Luna Drive
Las Vegas, NM 87701
(505) 454-2500

Razor Academy
4100 Southern Boulevard
Rio Rancho, NM 87124
(505) 896-3377

Southwest School — Cosmetology
1810 North Silver Street
Silver City, NM 88061
(575) 388-3000

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