Have a go at our Makeup Business Planning Quiz below. The results of previous respondents are then explained throughout this blog:

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From the time Cleopatra of Ancient Egypt crushed charcoal and coral and applied it to her lips and eyes, makeup has been a part of human dress and design.

It’s used range from the practical to the theatrical and it is used around the globe to accentuate beauty and make aesthetic changes to a person’s appearance.

The trade has truly become, and art form and trained practitioners are rightly given the title artist. In the UK, the sector has flourished in the past 10-15 years and the low-cost nature of the business makes it an attractive proposition to entrepreneur’s who might have limited budgets and are looking for a business that is flexible and can fit around busy lifestyles.

You have landed here because of your expressed interest in learning more about the makeup business sector. Please enjoy the blog below and learn more about this ever more popular sector.

Industry Stats

The figure below shows some of the key industry stats including the wider cosmetic market value, projected market growth and number of UK based makeup artists. The sustained growth of the industry and the multiple applications and areas of specialism encourages creative entrepreneurs to begin their own ventures. Each adopting and adapting subtly different business plans to carve out their own unique offering.

Part of a UK market worth over £2bn, makeup artistry has become an ever more popular service in recent years. The increase in personal disposable income with the expectation for more specialist beauty services has driven the makeup artist sector upwards.

It can be argued that the pressure to look ones best has never been more acute with the ‘Instagram Effect’ encouraging people to spend more on personal appearance than ever before.

The role of makeup artist also has applications beyond the beauty industry with commercial opportunities abound throughout the visual media sectors such as TV and film. The continued growth of those sectors has added to the already burgeoning demand for quality makeup artists throughout the nation.

Makeup artistry courses have remained in the top 5 most popular technical collage courses for the past 5 years. For those more entrepreneurially minded, newly qualified make up technicians have ample opportunity to explore and develop their own business ventures. An attractive proposition given the start-up costs can be significantly lower than other start-up businesses in the wider beauty industry.

The numbers vary but on average a makeup artist who works as the sole employee of a small business could expect to see between 10 and 12 customers a week. The number is slightly skewed by the volume of part-time, lifestyle businesses who may only work in evening and weekends and see only a couple of clients each week.

A full-time business may have its own shop front or sublet a space out of a larger site like a hair salon.

The services a makeup artist may offer can fall into 5 general categories. Each makeup businesses has its own blend and specialisation of makeup services. The graphic below indicates the uptake of the most popular offerings. The combination and/or specialism of one or more of these services and equipment is what allows each makeup artist business to differentiate itself from others in the market.

General makeup services feature as a service in 100% of respondents and can be considered as the base line service for all makeup businesses. More niche areas like makeup lessons and theatrical makeup services can create a point of differentiation for an enterprise. There are also a wide range of complimentary beauty products that could be sold as part of an alternate revenue stream.

Average Customer Spend for Makeup Businesses

The average spend on a makeup artist is around £73 per person. This spend is generally made up of an hour’s worth of treatments per customer, per visit. Based on an average of 12 appointments a week that is a potential turnover of £40,000 per year.

How Do Clothing Brands Get Financed?

As previously mentioned, there are low barriers to entry for anyone looking to start a makeup business. A successful, trusted and reputable make artist will have had some form of professional training but once qualified there is very little by way of tooling and equipment required to begin a new makeup businesses A new company will be required to build up a regular client list which may take time and any additional staff members would also need to have the right training behind them.

Given that the level of competition, starting a makeup there is a clear advantage in preparing a proper business plan in order to prepare to begin trading in the best way possible.

‘Focus Make Services’ was founded by Katrina shortly after she became a qualified makeup artist. With a small £2,000 Start Up Loan she was able to create a small but attractive website, undertake some local advertising and purchase a small amount of retail stock.

By running a free makeup trial day at a local beauty salon once a week she was able to showcase her skills and start up build a client list over the course of a couple of months. The detailed business plan she invested in gave her some clear figures and milestones to lend a degree of comfort in her strategy of offering those initial free services.

A high proportion of makeup entrepreneurs have secured funds from Start Up Loans and other debt finance from traditional bank loans. The table below shows the main sources of business finance and their associated percentage. In some cases, for larger projects, businesses may need to obtain finance from more than one source.


The layperson may be misled into thinking a fully written business plan would only be a requirement if looking for outside finance. Whilst it is true a solid business plan would be a pre-requisite for any form of form debt or equity finance the value of having a quality business plan cannot be underestimated. Even for those self-funding, a viable and robust business plan is a sure way to keep focused and accountable which will ultimately lead to better business decision making.

Importance of a business plan

The right pricing structure and the ability to find new customers is vital to any makeup business. As is the understanding the business’ revenue model, showing the number of customers it requires, in order to hit breakeven.

Any serious company should look to invest in a proper, written business plan in order to maximise its potential. The graphic below shows a high proportion of makeup businesses have invested in a professionally written plan and all new ventures should look to do the same.

So what can we say about starting your own makeup business?


  • The industry is flourishing
  • The businesses can be flexible and start on small levels of investment
  • Customers are generally loyal and will return to the same artist for similar treatments again and again


  • Strong market competition makes it important to establish a recognisable brand and reputation
  • Takes time to build up a customer base and cash flow planning is therefore key


How you can succeed

The best way to get ahead of the competition and eliminate the biggest unknowns and risks when starting your own makeup business is to invest in a high-quality business plan. The investment is invaluable. We at MyBizPlan provide the highest quality and yet lowest cost business plan in the UK, for a minimal outlay you can obtain a high-quality, visually stunning, financially robust business plan. It will give you a greater chance of seeking that vital finance and in the long run, could save you thousands. 

If owning and running a makeup business sounds like the kind of business for you, get started with a Makeup Business Plan from MyBizPlan. See which of our solutions is right for you by having a go at our – Do You Really Need a Business Plan Questionnaire?

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