Monday, August 30, 2010

I Wanna Be an MUA: How To Determine Your Day Rate

I have touched on this topic a few times in the past.  It usually comes up after I have taken a class or seminar.  Most would say to do research on your peers and target market to come up with a median average.  While I do agree with that I also feel that as an MUA one should know their worth.  That said I have a fellow beauty blogger/MUA friend, well a few actually, who I feel don't know the value of their gifts.  These are some seriously talented ladies with tons of experience to boot, still trying to figure out how much they should charge.  We have had discussions on pricing that I feel still haven't been resolved in the past way so I think I've finally arrived at a solution and once it hit me I thought it was a rather simple way to go about it.

The researching of your market and peers is still very important in this exercise.  This will determine what you charge per person.  Of course figure in different variables like lashes, brow work, airbrush, etc., but you will at least have a good general figure(s) to start with.  Once you have that number, lets use $50 for this example (not including variables), then you need to be realistic with yourself - to beat a good face how much time does it take you?  This should include prep work, foundation application, intricate eye makeup (if you only figure in time for a simple eye look of course you are not being honest with yourself), lashes, a lip, the whole nine yards.  Lets say that on an ideal day you like to take about 45 minutes-an hour for everything.  OK great - so if someone asks you what your day rate is and you figure a day of work is eight hours with a break (please take a break!  at least for some water) then your day rate would be equal to $350 - saying you don't get a paid lunch, if you do, then your day rate is $400 (that's with an hour lunch break).  That number can be shifted as needed, say for instance you let them know that it applies to a set number of faces - in this instance no more than 7, any additional faces would be a set amount per person.  So on and so forth.  If you need to figure in fees for parking, hotel, etc then do that too. 

As you progress and grow in this business of course you can alter your fee schedule, you SHOULD alter it.  It is deserved after all the classes and experience being added to your MUA resume.  Anyway, this is just my take on it.  Hope it helps someone out there even as just a starting point.  When I first started I had no idea what to charge or if to charge at all.  Now I know but it would've been great to have a little guidance.  Good Luck! :)

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