In our post, My Secret Strategies for Building an Amazing Bridal Team, we talked about how to start thinking about the process. Today we will discuss how to find artists and stylists for your bridal team.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN MAKEUP ARTISTS & STYLISTS
MAKEUP ARTISTS & HAIRSTYLISTS WHO SHOW UP ON TIME
These are the people who show up to the interview on time. You would be surprised how many are late or don’t even bother showing up to a damn interview. I'm almost laughing at how basic this shit is, but it's true! You will weed a lot of folks out in the interview process alone over punctuality.
The artists and stylists that show up late, will give you all kinds of excuses for why they are late. Just nip the interview in the bud and send them home. I don’t care that you had a flat tire, your ass is late. Here is the brutal reality: Will a bride be understanding when she has a limited time before she has to be at church? No. And neither should you. Being punctual is CRUCIAL. Don't waste your time with these artists. Keep it moving and find the ones who are punctual and show up on time.
Find People You Want to Be Around
Find people with a wonderful attitude, good manners and that you would love to be around. Weddings are an emotional time and personalities matter more than ever!
In the day of social media, it’s amazing to me how many times I come in contact with people I think are the walking dead. My mom laughs at me every time we are out and I come in contact with these zombie-like creatures. As I sit at a restaurant, it goes a little like this:
“Are you ok?”
“Do you have a pulse?”
Gets side-eye from waitress as if she can't be bothered to smile.
You know who I'm talking about. These people sit there staring at you like a deer in headlights.
Hello? Is anyone in there?
The key is to look for someone that at least has a pulse! These artists and stylists are representing you and your brand and weddings are high energy. You don't want to bring a stick-in-the-mud to a party, do you? Neither does your bride.
A good personality and good energy go a long way in the world of weddings. Find someone who is not only pleasant to talk to, but share good manners and knows how to read a room. (Mothers of the bride will appreciate it!)
FIND RAW, NATURAL TALENT. (Even if they're new.)
You probably wonder why this is third on my list of what to look for in a makeup artist and hairstylist right? Well, this is something that CAN be taught. If someone has the other two skills working in their favor, it is easy to cultivate someone who has talent but needs polishing around the edges in terms of skill set.
It's 2018, everyone and their brother is a makeup artist. We all know that. But here's the rub: This generation has all been told they are special and can do anything they can set their mind to. I hate to break it to you, but I don’t agree at all. If that were the case, I would be researching and discovering new stars, black holes, and planets for NASA. But I'm not that smart when it comes to complicated math formulas. Know your weaknesses and your strengths and find people who make you better as a whole.
The same goes for makeup artists and hairstylists. Just because they call themselves one, doesn't mean they're good at it. Finding these rare gems will be hard, but they ARE out there. Sometimes right out of school.
Leading By Intuition
Another key to finding a good team member is to look for talent that leads by intuition. Intuition is 80% of the battle when hiring good makeup artists and hairstylists for your bridal team (along with problem-solving skills).
The other 20% of the actual artistry can be taught with time, coaching, and practice.
When it comes to hairstylists, you must have a cosmetology license, so these types are easier to find. They will have the basic understanding of how to do styles, and with practice—if they are good—they will get better with each job.
LICENSE TO WORK
What I am about to say is going to get people’s knickers in a fucking twist. Hold on to your mittens, kittens, we are going to rattle some cages.
In most states, YOU MUST be a licensed cosmetologist or esthetician to do makeup. So when hiring talent for your team, be sure they are licensed in your state.
If you still are confused, Google “professional regulation in your state”. This will give you the phone number to your regulatory agency and they will tell you over the phone if you need a license or not. It's really that simple.
Thanks to the makeup schools that are popping up everywhere, they all tout the “Certification” angle to make their classes feel like they have value. In most states you aren't required to have a license to “demonstrate” makeup (like in department stores) but to work on-site, most states require you to have a license.
The ones who argue against it usually have a financial interest in telling you otherwise. They also are very good at bending the law to work in their favor. Do your due diligence when researching this subject and be sure your bases are covered.
I have zero reasons to lie to you on this one. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
FINDING TEAM MEMBERS
I have hired team members from almost everywhere. Here are some great places to start looking:
- Cosmetology Schools
Cosmo schools are wonderful to get new and eager team members who want to start out as your associate artists. Call the schools you know turn out good students and ask to talk to career placement services. They will usually be glad to help you.
- Facebook Groups and Local Beauty Message Boards
We have our Glossible Facebook Group and I have found artists to assist on there and so have other makeup artist friends. Facebook groups and message boards are great to watch how people interact on social media as well.
Yes, believe it or not, I have advertised for jobs on Craigslist. While I get more coal than diamonds, I have managed to find a few great team members over the years. You have to pay for ads on Craigslist now, so if that’s not in your budget, perhaps networking in other ways is more in line with your budget.
- Social Media
It’s so easy now to put up “We’re hiring” posts on social media, be it your Facebook Page or your Instagram. You never know who may be a fan of your business and would jump at the chance to join your team. These are the ones I find make the greatest team members because they are already watching your business and admire it.
THE INTERVIEW PROCESS
When I initially built my team, I got many applications all at once. I had up to 30 resumes that were amazing and I wanted to interview all of them. But 30 hours of interviews? No thanks!
Here is how I solved that problem.
I conducted Group Interviews where I invited potential candidates in and we talked to all of them at once. We told them about our company, about the position, and about how the role of artist and stylist would work. We also got to observe how they interacted with other potential artists and stylists.
After a brief introduction to the company, I did a game called “Listening Skills”. This was a game where each person took five minutes to learn about the other person’s hair and beauty needs. Each person told the other about their lifestyle and what they would want for their hair and makeup.
At the end of the game, each candidate repeated back what the other person wanted and made suggestions on what they were going to do for the client. The ones that had exceptional listening skills and made good suggestions made it to the next round—the audition.
TIP: To be an amazing makeup artist or hairstylist is to listen to your clients.
The candidates who made it to the “audition round” were asked to come in and do a makeup or hair audition using live models. The models came in with a look they wanted to wear and asked the artist or stylist to make suggestions or modifications according to their needs.
Once the artist or stylist did the pre-consultation, I have them execute the desired look. At the end of the audition, I chat with them on why they did what they did for the client. They should be able to explain to me why they made the choices they did. This shows me their thought process and thinking skills. While there is no right or wrong answer, this gives me an idea of where they are in terms of skill level and problem solving skills.
After the audition, I dismiss them with a time and date on when I will be back in touch.
After the Audition
After the potential team member leaves, I have the model stay behind so I can interview them without the artist or stylists present. This allows the model to speak freely and openly without the fear of being in the room with the artist or stylist.
Tip: When getting models to sit for auditions, here is a great tip. Use friends you trust and who KNOW you. These are the people who are not afraid to give you honest opinions on how they looked or felt in the chair. If the artists or stylists bring their own models, their friends will always give glowing reviews. These friends may also post a disadvantage because they have done their friend's hair or makeup before. You want real results and an inside look at how they problem solve with clients they have never worked with before.
In the end, auditions are a great way to see how potential artists interact with people they don’t know. Gather your trusted friends to come in and get a free service on the condition they provide valuable feedback to you.
If they sing their praises, you know you’ve found a winner.
HIRING YOUR NEW TEAM MEMBER
Now that you’ve found a great new team member for your blossoming bridal business, it’s time to protect yourself. This is when it’s important to have an Independent Contractor Agreement for Makeup Artists and Hairstylists. This contract template is to be sure they keep their end of the bargain while representing your company.
I always advise you to consult with an attorney in your state to be sure you:
- can use independent contractor contracts
- that you tailor it to suit the needs of your business
- that you make it clear they are not an employee of the company
We use Independent Contractor Agreements for our studio so that we keep everything transparent and expectations clear. While some parts of this contract may be null and void, some things you may want to add as you grow your business.
If you decide to download this contract, please take it to an attorney in your state and have them make adjustments according to your own unique needs.
Tip: We created this contract so that you will save time and money on having the attorney make adjustments for you instead of drafting one from scratch. Since most attorney’s work on an hourly basis, this saves you time and money.
Now that we have told you where to find your new bridal makeup and hairstylists, let's talk about what to pay them.
Check out our next post on “How to Pay Your Bridal Team And Not Go Broke”