On larger productions these related jobs may be separated, but usually the two roles are combined. Working initially with the designer, the Hair and Make-Up Departments are responsible for the design, application and care of hair/wigs and make-up during a production.
- Hair/wig dressing.
- Specific make-up skills, including period and ageing.
- Specialist areas, including wig making, body painting, prosthetics, making contact lenses and teeth.
- Good communication and diplomacy skills.
- Knowledge of relevant Health and Safety guidelines, including good working practices and hygiene.
- BA (Hons) Fashion: Hair & Make-Up for Fashion- London College of Fashion Click Here
- BA (Hons) Make-Up and Hair Design – Southampton Solent University Click Here
- BA (Hons) Specialist Hair and Media Make-Up – University College Birmingham Click Here
- Make-Up Design and Hairstyling – BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma – West Thames College Click Here
- See also: The Wig Accadamy & Uk Wig School
Other courses are available. Those above represent a sample from various drama schools and universities.
- Ensuring that actors’ hair and make-up fits within the overall production design, with particular attention to historical detail on period dramas.
- Supervising adjustments and repairs to wigs, maintaining them during long runs, making sure wigs are collected at the end of each performance and prepared for the following one.
To become a hair and/or make-up artist it’s important to do a good foundation course – completing an NVQ in hairdressing is also advisable. It’s vital to gain practical on-the-job experience, starting with work placements at local theatres. Many Heads of Wigs start as Wig Assistants, gaining invaluable experience in hair, wigs, make-up and special effects by working closely with senior colleagues.