Makeup Artist Schools in West Virginia
You *LOVE* makeup and you want to become an expert. Maybe even a professional, full-time, sought-after makeup artist. Where do you go to learn more about the trade, and perfect your skills?
Here are the four ways that people can learn about makeup--both for personal enjoyment, and to become paid artists.
1. SCHOOLS OF MAKEUP ARTISTRY. There are about 40 or 50 makeup schools in the United States that teach *only* makeup artistry. They go into incredible detail about different styles of application, the different sub-categories of makeup artistry (for example, bridal makeup artistry vs. runway makeup artistry vs. photo shoot makeup artistry), and to handle the "professional" side of makeup, like how to find new clients and build a thriving business. Makeup artist schools are a GREAT option if you're very serious about becoming a makeup artist. They're expensive--most cost more than ten grand for a six-month program--but many people swear by them.
2. COSMETOLOGY COLLEGES AND BEAUTY SCHOOLS. These are a MUCH more affordable option for people who want to enter the makeup trade. These schools usually cost less than $10,000, and instead of teaching only makeup, beauty schools teach a more "rounded" education, and include instruction on how to cut/shape/style/color hair, how to provide professional-style manicures and pedicures, how to design skin care routines for clients with specific issues, and how to apply and remove basic makeup. The most helpful thing about cosmetology schools is that graduates are allowed to sit for a cosmetology exam upon graduation (and in a section below, we'll discuss why that may be a great thing).
3. SHORT-TERM WORKSHOPS. The two options above are for folks who want to enter the beauty business, but this option is great for everyone--including people who just want to learn a little bit more about makeup. Workshops--also referred to as intensives--are short one-day or two-day classes that teach a specific aspect of makeup. Sometimes it's basic ("how to apply eye makeup," for example) and sometimes it's advanced ("how to apply makeup for models who will be in front of flash photography"), but that's the beauty of it--you can sign up for the workshops you want to learn more about. These types of classes are usually held in more metropolitan areas, so check ThumbTack, EventBrite, Yelp, and Meetup.com for workshops in Charleston, Huntington, and Parkersburg.
4. ONE-ON-ONE COACHING SESSIONS. If you don't care to wait until a workshop rolls into town and you don't want to sign up for a makeup school, why not arrange some classes for yourself with your own private makeup artist? Every year, there are more and more makeup artists in every state, and many of them LOOOOVE to give private lessons, because it's an easy source of income. The best part about private coaching is that you can 1) bring your friends, and make it an event, and 2) request specific lessons on whatever it is you're most interested in.
5. ONLINE HOW-TOs. While it's not technically "school," there are some truly fantastic online tutorials out there, and they're well-worth viewing. There are some pretty terrible ones out there, too, and we'd suggest you skip those! We've pulled together some of the "best of the best," so be certain to take a look.
Getting Your LICENSE (Maybe)
We mentioned licenses in the previous section; we'll expand on that a bit. Many people who want to get into makeup--either full-time, or as a side-gig doing weddings--are concerned about licensing. Do makeup artists in West Virginia need licenses, or not?
The short is: "yes" you need a license if you're going to work in a Kentucky beauty salon, and "technically, yes" if you want to do solo makeup gigs.
If you work in any beauty establishment--a beauty salon, for example, or a day spa--you'll need a license to get hired. It's illegal for people to work in a business establishment as a beauty professional and not have a license. Most people either go to a beauty school and get a cosmetology license (if they're interested in doing hair) or go to an esthetics school and an esthetician license (if they're interested in providing skin care).
If you wish to be a makeup artist who does not work in a beauty salon, but instead does gigs for weddings, photo shoots, commercials, and so on--technically you *should* have some kind of beauty license--but many makeup artists who work these gigs do not. It's our guess that the state of West Virginia will eventually become a little bit stricter when it comes to licensing, but for now, there seem to be many makeup artists working without any kind of license.
If you have questions or concerns, contact the West Virginia Board of Cosmetology homepage or call them directly at (304) 558-2924. They make sure that salons and salon workers are following the state's beauty laws, and they can help you with any questions you have.
West Virginia Cosmetics Training
We could find no "makeup-only" makeup artist schools in West Virginia. But that's ok! As we mentioned, there are plenty of MUA superstars who got their start at a cosmetology school. If that's the path you'd like to take, here are some beauty schools you can contact:
Academy of Careers and Technology
390 Stanaford Road
Beckley, WV 25801
Carver Beauty Academy
4799 Midland Drive
Charleston, WV 25306
Clarksburg Beauty Academy
120 South Third Street
Clarksburg, WV 26301
Southern WV Community & Technical College
2900 Dempsey Branch Road
Mount Gay, WV 25637
Cutting Edge School of Hair Design and Salon Clinic
401 Pierpont Street
Petersburg, WV 26847
Mercer County Beauty School
1397 Strafford Drive
Princeton, WV 24740
Scott College of Cosmetology
1502 Market Street
Wheeling, WV 26003