Make-Up Artist Schools and Colleges in the U.S.

Make-up artists assist clients with skin care techniques and the application of facial cosmetics. These specialized cosmetologists work with clients in the beauty salon environment or provide services to performers in the television, film or theater industries. Aspiring make-up artists can earn certificates, diplomas and associate's degrees in make-up artistry or cosmetology.

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How to Select a Make-Up Artist School

When selecting a make-up artist school, individuals should start by seeking accredited programs. Because every state requires cosmetologists and personal appearance workers to pass a licensing examination before starting their careers, make-up artistry students will want to enroll in agency-approved colleges or state-licensed beauty schools in order to receive high-quality training in their field.

Prospective students evaluating programs in make-up artistry should select programs according to their individual interests and career ambitions. Some public and private institutions offer certificate programs that focus solely on the application of make-up, while other schools include make-up artistry courses as part of cosmetology diploma or degree programs. Cosmetology programs often require students to complete additional courses on skin care, hair cutting, hairstyling and basic business practices.

Aspiring make-up artists should also consider the length and level of study that they wish to pursue before deciding whether to earn a diploma, certificate or associate's degree. Diploma and certificate programs typically last a year or less in duration, while associate's degree programs can take up to two years to complete.

Make-Up Artist Program Overviews

Certificate in Make-Up Artistry

Participants may meet the qualifications for a certificate after completing as few as six courses. Students take both theoretical and practical courses in preparation for careers as make-up artists. Courses include make-up application fundamentals, character make-up, fashion make-up and advanced make-up techniques. Some vocational or technical schools may have their own salons in which students can work under supervision to gain additional experience.

Diploma in Cosmetology

At the diploma program level, prospective make-up artists typically complete courses within the broader cosmetology field as well as those within their specialization. Diploma programs commonly involve both coursework and externship opportunities at salons. Students may take courses in skin care, cosmetic art, product knowledge and client services.

Associate's Degree in Cosmetology

An associate's degree program in cosmetology involves extensive coursework and training; students fulfill general education course requirements in addition to specialized courses. Practical training is also most common at this level of schooling. Those who are interested in make-up artistry careers can specifically benefit from associate-level courses in sanitation and safety, beauty tools and business management. These programs may also focus on state licensing preparation. They may result in an Associate of Arts or Associate of Applied Science.

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    • North Dakota (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at University of North Dakota include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Non-Degree: Certificate
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Culinary Arts and Personal Services
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    • Texas (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at University of North Texas include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
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    • Tennessee (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at East Tennessee State University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
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    Areas of study you may find at Brown University include:
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    Areas of study you may find at Macon State College include:
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    Areas of study you may find at Grand Valley State University include:
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    • Connecticut (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Central Connecticut State University include:
      • Graduate: Master
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      • Post Degree Certificate: Post Master's Certificate, Postbaccalaureate Certificate
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    • Colorado (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at University of Northern Colorado include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: Post Master's Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Culinary Arts and Personal Services
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