As a makeup artist in Hawaii you may feel like your opportunities are endless. According to Hawaii’s Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism, last year around 449,000 people were married in the state, taking advantage of the tropical climate and stunning photo backdrops. Wedding makeup is just one of the career opportunities you will find in Hawaii.
The performing and theatre arts comprise another significant market for makeup artists in the state. You will find many professional theatre troupes located throughout the state, along with several professional dance and opera companies. Makeup artists are an essential part of any stage production.
Film and television production in Hawaii represents yet a third significant market for makeup artists. A new law passed in 2013 now offers film production companies an income tax credit of up to 25 percent for movies produced in Hawaii. As a makeup artist, you could potentially work on the set of the next big blockbuster production filmed in Hawaii.
To become a makeup artist in Hawaii you will need to be licensed by the state Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs’ Professional and Vocational Licensing branch. Hawaii’s Board of Barbering and Cosmetology determines the regulations you will need to abide by.
Meeting the Requirements to Become a Makeup Artist in Hawaii
If you want to work as a makeup artist you will need to earn the Beauty Operator License that is issued by Hawaii’s Professional and Vocational Licensing branch. To be eligible for this you must be at least 16 years old and have a high school education before enrolling in a makeup artist college program.
There are four categories of a Beauty Operator License, two of which will allow you to work as a makeup artist:
- Cosmetologist – As a cosmetologist you can offer the services that are performed by an esthetician, hairdresser, and nail technician.
- Esthetician – As an esthetician you can offer services that pertain to makeup, spa, and skin care.
To become licensed in any of these categories you will need to complete a specific course of study through a school of cosmetology or esthetics.
Makeup Artist Education in Hawaii
There are two ways you can complete the education requirements to be eligible for licensure as a Beauty Operator-Cosmetologist, or as a Beauty Operator-Esthetician so as to be able to work as a makeup artist:
- Cosmetologist – complete 1,800 hours of beauty school classes or 3,600 hours of an apprenticeship
- Esthetician – complete 600 hours of beauty school classes or 1,200 hours of an apprenticeship
The cosmetology education that pertains to esthetics overlaps with the esthetician education. Whichever category of license you pursue will therefore include similar curriculum content related to makeup artistry:
- Techniques and strategies of makeup application
- Spa facilities and service options
- Skin care products, applications, and techniques
- Sanitation, health, and safety
- Makeup and cosmetic chemistry
- Hawaii cosmetology laws
You must complete your education from a school or in an apprenticeship program that is approved by the Hawaii Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs. You may also be allowed to combine apprentice and education hours.
Once you have completed your education you will need to pass an appropriate exam for your category of licensure. The licensing process is detailed on the state’s Beauty Operator Requirements and Instructions document.
Employment Opportunities for Makeup Artists in Hawaii
From movie and TV production to theatre and the salon industry, makeup artists in Hawaii find rewarding jobs in diverse fields.
Hawaii’s Film and Television Production Studios
Film and television production are huge markets in Hawaii that represent a significant percentage of the state’s makeup artist jobs. Whether you are working for a locally-based company or a Hollywood studio shooting on-location, you will also find that the average salary for makeup artists in the film industry is higher than other fields.
As a talented makeup artist you may be on the list of credits of the next big film or TV series to come out of Hawaii, joining the ranks of:
- Jurassic Park
- The Hunger Games
- The Karate Kid part II
- Pearl Harbor
- Pirates of the Caribbean – two films in the series
- Indiana Jones – two films in the series
Performing Arts in Hawaii
The field of performing arts is another of Hawaii’s largest employers of makeup artists. Throughout the state you will find professional companies that include:
- Army Community Theatre
- Ohia Productions
- Paul and Vi Loo Theatre
- Honolulu Theatre for Youth
- Hawaii Theatre Center
- Manoa Valley Theatre
- A the World’s a Stage Theatre Company
- Aloha Performing Arts Company
- Ballet Hawaii
- Central Theatre Arts Academy
- Diamond Head Theatre
- Hawaii Opera Theatre
- Hawaii Repertory Theatre
- Hilo Community Players
- Mamiya Theatre
- Kuma Kahua Theatre
- Waimea Community Theatre
Beauty Salons and Cosmetic Companies
Island locals and throngs of tourists all want their turn to be beautified. Years of exposure to the island’s strong sun can also accelerate aging and wrinkles, which can be remedied by makeup artists who work at day spas, beauty salons, and professional cosmetic companies. Some of Hawaii’s top names in these fields include:
- Leslie Fair in Honolulu
- Lucid Makeup Artistry on Oahu
- Delish Makeup Artistry in Honolulu
- Kecia Littman in Honolulu
- Susan Ko in Honolulu
- Maui Makeup Artistry
- Jessica Waite on Maui
- Beauty by Trisha on Maui
- Susan Ko on Oahu
- Love.art.beauty aka The Lab on Kauai
You will also recognize the following commercial companies, which were recently advertising for qualified makeup artists:
- Disney Resort and Spa in Kapolei
- Gucci in Honolulu
- Tiffany & Co in Honolulu
- MAC Cosmetics in Honolulu