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A List of Makeup Classes Beginners Should Expect to Take



Have you been exploring your creativity and wondering, “Where can I find makeup classes near me, and what do they even involve?” To answer the first question of “Where can I take makeup classes?” the Cortiva Institute has locations around the country. To answer the second, we’ve created this sample list of the typical accredited makeup courses someone signing up might expect to take after joining a trusted makeup school. Those who are starting to get serious about their dreams – but also want to understand what they’re signing up for – should use this list as a basic tool for understanding the type of makeup courses one might see.


Note: The curriculum, as with any college or institute, updates regularly, so the specific makeup class names and descriptions may differ when you apply and join the program. Ask during the application process for more details on what your specific program will involve when you request more info.


Examples of Makeup Classes for Beginners

Typically, certification involves becoming familiar with the art, the science and the business of makeup, along with learning tons of practical, real-world knowledge and having hands-on experience. Check each makeup class description to see what you would be learning when you look through your specific program’s booklets, but here are some basic concepts that should be covered:

  • Anatomy and Physiology – This dive into anatomy will give you a deeper understanding of the face as well as skin.

  • Skin Disorders and Universal Precautions – Going into more detail, this course will allow you to understand disorders affecting the skin glands.

  • Makeup and Chemistry – Brow tinting and artificial lashes are focused on in this course, which covers basic chemistry and chemicals found in the skin.

  • Skin Reactions – With any reputable program for makeup certification, classes covering inflammation, pigmentations and lesions are important.

  • Dermatology and Esthetics – A deep dive into important dermatological knowledge like acne, skin cancer and products is often a part of the coursework.

  • Ethics and Law – Understanding the federal law, local law and ethics of cosmetology is important for any makeup artist.

  • Skin Clinic I and II – Courses that have real-world relevance are very important, and these two courses give practical work in a professional setting to learn important hands-on skills.

  • Fundamentals of Makeup – Usually, there will be a few fundamentals courses. One might cover color theory, color consultations and creating a look, and another might involve the history of makeup and how to craft your career.

  • Professional Development – Whether you want to go into your own business or join a spa, a course like this can help train in networking and relationship building.

  • The Business of Makeup – A good makeup artist certification program will feature at least one course on how to go about navigating this unique business. A course like this should cover basic business plan creation, marketing, sales and portfolio creation.

  • Courses on Specific Techniques – Depending on the specific program you’re looking at, these classes may either be electives or baked into the program.

  • Airbrushing – Learn popular, newer techniques of applying makeup.

  • Special Effects – Do special effects makeup for film, theater or TV! This may come in the form of body art, prosthetics or theater makeup meant for intense lighting.

  • Lashes – Tinting and shaping lashes requires special training.

  • Waxing – Body and brow waxing training needs to cover sanitization and sterilization.

  • Massage – Facial massage is a popular skill for those looking for work in spa settings.

  • Using Specialty Machines – Those doing facials, waxing and working in a spa will want to take this course.

  • High Fashion – Courses like these are for those dreaming to do high definition, editorial makeup that is shown in intense photography.

  • Weddings and Events – Event makeup is a great field for a new makeup artist, and a course on this specifically can help you learn the ropes.

  • Makeup Aging Skin, Teens and Men – Work with popular-yet-underrepresented groups and learn about their specific skin needs.

  • Specialty Treatments and Applications – Microdermabrasions, chemical peels, light therapy and other strategies for facials are more advanced esthetician practices that a makeup artist should be aware of.

Again, there are many different classes one can get specialized training in, from special effects training to makeup for men to high-fashion makeup. You can also find specific skin-care courses as well. This list is merely a jumping-off point. If you’re still asking yourself, “What will be in the specific makeup artist classes near me?” take the first step in your path to an exciting and fun career by learning more about our makeup artist program by connecting with us today.