Hair and Make-up Artist

In many productions the roles of hair and make-up artist are usually separated, however, in micro-budget film projects, the two roles are performed by the same person. Generally, these two professionals work in order to enhance the actors’ aesthetic look; however on a film set they might be working to achieve the opposite if the theme of the film requires doing so. Hair and make-up are two crucial elements in the general design of film and TV productions, creating a distinctive appearance for the characters based on the social class, age, time period as well as other necessary elements in order to produce the desired illusion. 

Hair dresser cuts, dyes hair, creates hair-dos and on a film set they may be working to make the actor’s hair look as though they have just come through a hurricane.

Make-up artists by means of cosmetic products create the relevant look of the actor, e.g. to make their face appear as though they are ill. Film make-up artists also learn to make realistic scars and wounds.

Hair Designers are employed throughout pre-production and production, and usually work on a freelance basis. The hours are long and the job can involve long periods working away from home. 

Job/task description

  • Create the make-up-artistic concept
  • Come to an agreement about the concept with the director and the costume designer
  • Create make-ups and hairstyles that meet production requirements and reflect the idea of the film
  • Responsibility for the overall design, application, continuity and care of make-up and hair throughout the pre-production and production periods
  • Choose relevant cosmetic materials to embody the character of the film
  • Work with artificial hair
  • Design and application of hairpieces, hair extensions, facial hair, bald caps, tattoos, body paint
  • Design and application of medical effects such as cuts, scars, bullet wounds, burns, bruises, blood and the physical symptoms of various diseases and ageing and death effects
  • Work closely with numerous actors during the shoot
  • Prepare actors and look after them during their scenes
  • Work can be physically demanding, and requires stamina, as it involves many hours of standing or bending over Actors