I used to think that freelance hair stylists and makeup artists led such exciting and glamorous lives. Getting to work with models, photographers on photo shoots and backstage at fashion week; traveling to exotic places and the fashion capitals of the world.

Well, have you ever heard the saying – don’t sit too close at the ballet because it ruins the illusion?

It’s time to take off the rose colored glasses

I have had my beauty blog for several years now. I’ve had the privilege of meeting many talented artists – hearing how they got into the industry, career highlights, the projects they’ve worked on, all the obstacles and struggles they’ve faced.

Early morning call times, hulling around carryon suitcases filled with tools and products, and standing on your feet all day, fighting jet lag, not eating all day – the list goes on.

You can’t be a freelance artist without having a love for your craft – it’s that passion that keeps them going.

Getting jobs is a constant hustle – they need those pay cheques to keep coming in so that they can pay their bills and put food on the table. That in itself is stressful enough but they also have another struggle – getting paid.

Yes – you read that right.

Sounds crazy – but it’s true. It would be the equivalent of living each day under the stress of the Covid-19 lockdown.

Freelance artists – hair stylists, make-up artists, models, photographers and assistants – are told getting paid after the fact is a part of the industry and they just have to deal with it.

Chasing payments

Freelance artists deserve the same protection and respect as all other professionals. The art they create – it’s not a hobby – it’s their livelihood.

Some have waited up to 8-9 months to receive payment and when they follow-up they are often brushed off.

Behaviors must change.

Attitudes must change.

There can be no more excuses.

Freelance artists must get paid and they must get paid on time.

Clients and agencies need to honor the 30 day net pay on invoices.

Anything less is completely unacceptable.

The fashion and beauty industry MUST ensure that their artists get the fundamental respect they deserve, because they are the backbone of the industry.

They are the ones who create the magic.