Life as a makeup business owner: Jessica's story

Meet Jessica. 22, who founded her own makeup brand, Jecca Blac. Part of our Bitesize world of work series.

"My company's vision is to celebrate individuality."

  • Jessica loved arts subjects at school and studied Art, Sociology and Business at A-level
  • She went on to learn how to do makeup and hair for film, TV, and fashion at university
  • When she graduated, Jessica realised that there was a lack of makeup products available for the transgender community. Being transgender means identifying as a gender other than the one you were assigned at birth
  • Jessica set out to create her own, inclusive makeup products and spent time working with the transgender community to ensure she could cater to her clients' needs.

What to expect if you want to own your own business

Jessica learnt her trade at a specialist academy. Other ways to get into professional makeup are through a college course, an apprenticeship or getting hands-on experience to work towards the role. For example, at college, you could study qualifications such as a Level 2 Certificate in Makeup, Level 3 Diploma in Theatrical Media Makeup or Level 3 Diploma in Beauty Makeup Techniques. You can find out more information about becoming a makeup artist on the National Careers Service website.

Jessica now owns her own business creating gender-free makeup products. Working for yourself looks different for each person and each business, but in general it means you:

  • run your own business and are responsible for its success
  • can decide how, when and where you do your work
  • charge an agreed, fixed price for your work
  • sell goods or services to make a profit
  • can hire people at your own expense to help you or to do the work for you.

The salary and working hours when you own a business can vary enormously but what's most important is you work hard and love what you do.

You can be both employed and self-employed at the same time. You can work for your employer during the day, for example, and run your own business in the evenings and at weekends. It’s important to contact HMRC for advice if you’re not sure if you’re self-employed.

You can get help with setting up or developing your business, through the government’s business support services, for example, for advice about tax or how to find funding to start your business.

This information is a guide (sources: LMI for All, National Careers Service, GOV.UK)

For careers advice in all parts of the UK visit: England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales

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