I’m about to drop a real truth bomb on you. Are you ready?
Starting an MUA business — or any business — is hard. Okay, maybe that’s not the hottest take ever, but it’s something that we business owners aren’t that great at talking about. Sure, we love to talk about our business when everything is working and running smoothly, but we’re not so quick to share the messy side of things. And trust me, there’s lots of messy things, especially when you’re just getting started.
When I started out, I had to do and figure everything out on my own. DIY was the only option. When I wouldn’t have clients, I’d look to my analytics to see how people were interacting with my website and then I’d make changes. I spent an incredible amount of time investigating, changing, tweaking, optimizing… and then something crazy happened. I was copied.
All that hard work, all those hours… and for what? To be copied by someone else in my same industry who undercut my prices? You could say I learned what it meant to be in this industry; the good, the bad, and the ugly.
I decided that I could either sink or swim. Obviously, I chose the latter.
I even wrote an article about this experience which was published for the Tuesdays Together Guide for The Rising Tide Society and Honeybook! Read the article here.
If someone was copying me, it means I am doing something right! If someone is doing the same thing to you, I’d love to have a one-on-one call to chat about it. I also want to share this article I wrote with you. It was actually published by Honeybook for 120,000 creative entrepreneurs, which just tells me that I am definitely NOT alone.
My experience with someone stealing my sales page and website copy was especially painful because of how long it took to do all of it on my own. Running a part-time makeup artistry biz is actually a full time job. Evenings, weekends, mornings. You’re either doing makeup, cleaning your kit, or doing admin stuff. Oh yeah, and if you’re like me, you have a family. Kids. A husband. So there’s no time, really. That’s why it took me 3 years to finally get to this point where I have my system in place.
Do you have 3 years? To spare? Or would your rather skip all the headache and invest in time-saving templates that will grow your biz fast?
Starting an MUA business is just like any other business. You have to have contracts, invoices, and a process for onboarding clients. You have to get information from your clients before you meet with them. If this all sounds like a lot of work, don’t worry. There are amazing digital templates out there to help get you up and running quickly.
I chose to create a handful of digital templates that I can use and re-use to make things a little bit easier on myself. I just need to plug in the client information and make some tweaks and it’s good to go! These templates are the same ones I use today, and I created a version for other aspiring makeup artists, too! They’re in my shop and trust me, they’re SUCH a time-saver.
In this post, I want to share with you some of the digital templates you should grab first. These are the tools that are going to be the *most* valuable to you if you’re just getting started or looking to streamline your client communication:
Ok, for the longest time, I didn’t have enough clients to even justify paying for a client management system. I would send PDF contracts and invoices over and well, that would work. It wasn’t until I had more clients than I could manage with this system that I began using Honeybook (my client management system). If you have a CMS, great. But I will say that many production companies and agencies still need an actual proposal and/or invoice NOT connected to a third party app. This Makeup Artist Invoice Template is STLL the template I use today. As a matter of fact, I’ve just sent one out last week.
Customer service is everything for an MUA business (or any business). When your clients feel heard and respected, they’re going to be hooked. Having a polished and professional client questionnaire to send over to them is such a valuable tool. They’ll see that you care about their preferences, allergies, areas of concern, etc. They’ll appreciate that to you, they’re not just “another client” and instead, an individual that you really want to get to know better.
As an artist, making your client experience the best one is the most important thing you can do. Honestly, this is where you differentiate yourselves from the rest of the pack. Not only does this make your client experience amazing but it helps you to prepare and grow your kit.
Create a client questionnaire template that you can quickly customize and send off in just a few minutes. Your clients will feel totally pampered and you can get on with your day! If you want to use the same one I use, I got you covered.
Honestly, this is where I’d spend so much time, crafting the perfect email. I didn’t want to sound desperate but I also want the client to say “yes” to me! Of course, sometimes I am not available, so I have to say “no” to the client, which can be hard. Writing that email is a balance between letting them down gently and keeping the door open for future appointments (hopefully).
This is a “business in a box” for MUAs who serve bridal clients. The bundle includes eight of my best bridal email templates, an invoice template (also great for professional looking price quotes) and a detailed bridal questionnaire you can use to prepare for the big day. They can all be easily branded and plugged into any software you already use. Work smarter, not harder, bridal makeup artists!
I use Honeybook for my client management. In fact, I am a Honeybook educator so should you choose to go with them for your client management, I’ll gladly help you every step of the way. I love it because it is so easy to set up your emails, create automations, and apply them to your client. You don’t have to sit down and write the emails from scratch every time. In fact, I put together a bundle of my most frequently used emails so you can copy and paste them into your client management software or whatever you use to send emails!
**If you sign up to Honeybook using my referral link, you’ll receive the Full MUA Bundle Free and I’ll even set it up for you!**
I hope you enjoyed this blog post! Please check out my shop because my digital templates are seriously good, y’all. I even have a Full MUA Bundle option that includes everything: my client questionnaire, price quote, invoice template, and nine of my most popular email templates. If you just want to get it done and move on with your life, this is the way to go!
Do you have any questions about digital templates or setting up your MUA business? Feel free to reach out. If you need a little bit more help than just a quick question or two, I offer one-on-one coaching for aspiring makeup artists, too! You can learn more about that right here.
Oh, and before you go, I want to give you another free gift ? I created a free checklist of all of the resources I recommend for aspiring MUA business owners! I wrote a blog post outlining them here. You can also download the list for free (with instruction). Yes, it has referral links (not affiliate links) with exclusive discounts — but hey, they are what I am actively using in my business so you can trust they are the best! Click here to download it!
I’m Natalie, an American born makeup artist & makeup educator based in Wiesbaden, Germany. I truly believe that makeup, when applied well, can transform us in so many ways. My page is a space for inspiration, education, and advice. Thanks for being here & I’d love to connect with you!