Unless you’re going to rub makeup into people’s skin with your fingertips, you’re going to need some equipment.


Fortunately, we’ve created this list for beginner MUAs, so you can get 100% of the equipment you need to make people look beautiful.

Whether you’re starting college, an apprenticeship or beauty school, read this list.

It’s worthwhile checking what equipment your education provider provides before you buy anything. Still, it’s always good to have the equipment, so you can practise in your spare time and freelance if it’s an option.

Without further ado, let’s get started:


Pre Makeup Application Must-Haves

Before you begin applying makeup to clients, you need to ensure their face is ready. Here’s what you need to prepare:

1. Moisturiser

Great skin = great makeup. Moisturiser is the perfect base for makeup because clean, soft skin is easier to work on. There are several reasons you should apply moisturiser before makeup, which include:

  • Moisturiser makes your skin look clean and smooth
  • Moisturiser mattifies oily skin which is prone to flaking (which mean makeup dissolves and falls off the skin)
  • Moisturiser can help you cover blemishes, which means you won’t need to keep caking foundation on where it isn’t necessary
  • Moisturiser can help protect you from the sun (unless you’re from the UK), which means your skin will be healthier and won’t redden


Before you pick moisturiser, you should know what skin types there are:

  • Dry skin — tight, uncomfortable and flaky skin usually caused by a mixture cold air and warm inside air; need hydration from moisturisers with ingredients like shea butter
  • Oily skin — greasy, oily skin that feels slippy and wet, caused by dry skin and clogged pores; need lightweight, oil-free and non-greasy moisturisers with hyaluronic acid
  • Combination skin — a combination of the two above types of skin, can be difficult to find the right product as what solves a problem in one area can cause another in another area. Look for lightweight moisturisers and apply sparingly
  • Sensitive skin — blotchy, red, itchy and swollen skin that can be caused by allergies or skin conditions. Look for fragrance-free, natural, gentle moisturisers

(Most people will use a moisturiser anyway, but it’s good to have some to hand).


Further Reading: Understanding Skin Types


2. Primer

Primer does what it says, primes the skin for anything you’re about to apply. There are plenty of options for different types of primer; it all depends on what you want to do.

Here are a few reasons primer is a must-have in your makeup bag:

  • Primers can have multiple qualities, such as eye cream or sunscreen
  • Primer helps makeup stick for longer, so you won’t need as many applications throughout the day
  • Primer absorbs oil and gives your skin a matte look
  • Primer reduces the appearance of large pores
  • Fills in lines and evens out skin
  • Brightens up your skin


Different types of primer suit different skin types and colours:

  • Matte — lightweight, minimises pores, can clog pores and lead to breakouts
  • Silicone-free — flawless finish, works on dry skin, doesn’t work on sensitive or acne-prone skin
  • Tinted primer — dewy finish, works best on small pores with smooth, even skin, draws attention to uneven skin
  • Colour-correcting — neutralises skin, reduces the need for large amounts of foundation, great for sensitive skin


Further Reading: 4 Types of Makeup Primer


Pre Makeup Application Nice-to-Haves:

  • Face mist — if you want to pamper your clients or they have irritated, red skin or a skin condition, pick up a rosewater spray. It has anti-inflammatory properties, is a barrier against UV rays and is packed with antioxidants.
  • Lip moisturiser — lip moisturiser has soothing properties, promotes fast healing of the skin and protects from UV rays, it prepares the skin for any lip products you’re about to put onto it.


Makeup Application Must-Haves

Once you’ve prepared your client’s face, you can start to apply makeup. Here’s what you need:

1. Foundation

You need to use foundation to achieve an even skin tone on the face and neck. There are loads of different foundation shades; it all depends on your skin tone.

Foundation can also come in cool and warm tones — it depends on the client’s undertones.

Here are the reasons you need foundation in your MUA kit:

  • Foundation forms a protective barrier that protects you from UV rays and pollutants
  • Complements your skin type and tone
  • Makes your skin look healthy and gives it a subtle glow
  • Lessens the appearance of blemishes
  • Can help to conceal skin conditions like rosacea
  • Other products are applied more easily with a base of foundation


There are various types of foundation:

  • Liquid — comes in a variety of shades and colours, lightweight, can dry too quick
  • Powder — easy to apply, can look heavy and ‘caked on’
  • Mousse — lightweight feel, can create a mask appearance if you use too much
  • Mineral — great for troubled skin, too much can accentuate blemishes and wrinkles


Further Reading: Different Types of Foundation

Do you want to start 2019 by learning a new skill?

Posh Nailz offer various, high standard courses that help you on your way to create you own profession career in the beauty industry. For course start dates for our training centres contact us now.
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2. Concealer

The purpose of concealer is to cover dark spots on the face, particularly under the eyes, and conceal spots. More experienced MUAs may use concealer to highlight specific parts of the face, such as the cheekbones or the chin.

Here are the reasons you need foundation in your MUA kit:

  • Complements foundation and creates an even skin tone
  • Refreshes tired eyes
  • Disguises puffiness, blemishes, scars and imperfections
  • Camouflages dark circles and pigmentation
  • Can prevent lipstick from bleeding


There are different types of concealer:

  • Liquid — natural-looking coverage, not ideal for dry skin
  • Balm — stay put all day, ideal for layering, can be intimidating if you don’t know what you’re doing
  • Cream — bright and refreshed look, hydrating for dry skin, can give oily skin breakouts
  • Stick — great for little blemishes and dark spots, precise, can be heavy, won’t stay locked on a breakout


The Eyes

Eyes are usually what people look at when they’re talking to us, so here are some makeup products you can use to decorate the eyes.

1. Eyebrow Makeup

Eyebrows are the frame of your face, so you’ll want to make them look as flattering as possible. While you don’t want to overdo a client’s eyebrows, you can add makeup to give them a natural, subtle glow.

Here are the reasons you need eyebrow makeup in your MUA kit:

  • Give a natural, fuller look to eyebrows
  • Adds shape to your face
  • Make uneven eyebrows symmetrical
  • Create unique looks


There are different types of eyebrow products:

  • Pencil — great for reshaping, soft and natural look, can look quite severe
  • Pomade — creates deep, dramatic looks, can get messy
  • Powder — lightweight and natural, wear off quickly
  • Gel — dramatic effect that lasts, tricky application


Further Reading: How to Become a Makeup Artist: Posh Nailz 8-Step Guide


2. Eyeliner

Eyeliner has been used for thousands of years by both men and women, from Egyptian kings like Tutankhamun to goth rocker Marilyn Manson — guyliner, anyone?

Eyeliner is typically used to create the appearance of a wider or smaller eye and is often used to create dramatic and dark effects.

Here are the reasons you need eyeliner in your MUA kit:

  • Eyeliner can make smaller eyes appear bigger
  • Adds shape to the eye
  • Create bold looks
  • Draw attention to the eyes and eyelashes


There are different types of eyeliner products:

  • Liquid eyeliner — great for dramatic looks, hard to apply
  • Pencil eyeliner — loads of colours and easy to apply, doesn’t create the perfect straight line
  • Gel/cream eyeliner — great for smokey looks, easy to smudge, isn’t as easy to transport


4. Mascara

makeup artist kit mascara

Mascara is a makeup tool initially used by the Egyptians to mask them from evil spirits. Nowadays, darkening, thickening and lengthening the lashes can make the eyes appear larger and more doe-like, but can also add a dark, smokey, classy look.

Here are the reasons you need mascara in your MUA kit:

  • Makes the eyes look bigger and fuller
  • Light eyelashes appear darker
  • Adds shape and definition to the eyes
  • Wear it on its own or with other types of makeup
  • Adds volume and thickness


There are different types of mascara formulas:

  • Tube — easy to remove, great for people who have allergies, lack volume
  • Waterproof — suitable for oily skin, stays intact, lightweight, not water soluble (doesn’t dissolve in the eye), difficult to remove
  • Fibre — make lashes look longer and add volume, flake easily, can look unnatural
  • Regular — builds up on the lash easily, looks natural, rubs off easily, doesn’t keep lashes curled


There are different types of mascara brushes:

  • Twisted wire brushes with close-set brushes — swipe on in a few strokes, add volume and length, easy to apply at base
  • Rubber brushes — plenty of control, doesn’t clump, lengthen lashes without fullness
  • Fat wands — large in diameter, create volume
  • Curled or hourglass wands — great for adding a winged effect
  • Short, close-set bristles — separates lashes and coats hairs evenly, great for long and thick lashes


Further Reading: What Qualifications Do You Need to Become a Makeup Artist?


5. Eye Shadow

makeup artist kit eye shadow

Eye shadow is used under the eyebrows on the eyelids and is used to make the eyes stand out. There are hundreds of colours and textures, and you can create unique looks that complement your client’s skin tone.

Here are the reasons you need eye shadow in your MUA kit:

  • Makes the eyes stand out
  • Add depth and dimension
  • Make eyes appear larger
  • Draw attention to the eyes
  • Create bright and bold looks


There are different types of eye shadow:

  • Cream — travel-friendly, blend quickly, aren’t long-wearing or waterproof
  • Stick and crayon eyeshadow — travel-friendly, easy to apply, crease easily, not much blending time
  • Liquid — good for dry skin, easy to apply, no need to use primer, messy, run easily
  • Powder —  most commonly used, blendable, pigment depends on the quality, versatile, can create natural or dramatic looks


Keep Your Freshly Decorated Eyes Peeled for Part 2…

You’ve got the essentials for your MUA kit. You know what you need to prepare your skin, start the makeup application process, and apply makeup to your eyes. In part two, we’ll be talking about lips, lipliners, powders, contours and bronzers.

Do you want to start 2019 by learning a new skill?

Posh Nailz offer various, high standard courses that help you on your way to create you own profession career in the beauty industry. For course start dates for our training centres contact us now.
Sign Up Now