How To: Get a Pro Discount

Friday, March 22, 2013

I'm sure as beauty bloggers many of you are aware of the Pro Makeup discounts that many companies are offering for working makeup artists/cosmetologists to give us a break on product purchases for our kits. If you're not, you should know that there are cosmetic companies out there that are willing to give working makeup artists a discount ranging from about 20%-50% depending on the brand. When going through the application process for these programs you may find that if you live in a State/Country that does not require you to obtain a beauty license to be a Makeup Artist (like where I live in California),  it's difficult to obtain proof of your employment if you're doing mainly freelance work. I found myself in this very situation when I was looking to develop my bridal kit and looked a bit more into the pro programs and found that there are ways to get the discount without actually being on the payroll of a profession production. And there's how I did it!

First, I googled companies that offer the program and found the one's I was most interested in, the first being the most common, MAC. The MAC pro discount program was my introduction to the process of applying to other brands, and once I had my documents for this the rest of them were a breeze to apply to. Here is a list of accepted required documents to apply to the program from the MAC website

"Provide two current pieces from the following that indicate your selected category/profession: 
Composite Card, Business Card with name and specific profession, Editorial Page with name credit, Union Card, Professional License, Diploma/Certificate, Publication Masthead, Program/press Materials with name, Contract on Production Company Letterhead, Crew/Call List on Prod. Co. Letterhead, Professional Letter of Reference of Employment." 

The first, easiest and most necessary item on this list and one that you should already have as a working makeup artist is the business card. You can order some cute cheap ones at, which is where I ordered mine. After I went through those though, I decided to try and they have a WAY better selection, however they are more expensive. 
The second item from the list proved to be the most difficult for me because all I really had as proof of my work were the pictures I had taken and testimonials from my clients. However I had been working closely with my friend who is a hair stylist, and this is where I came up with my professional letter of reference. I had her write me a letter about the work I had completed with her and because she was a licensed cosmetologist I had her write her licence number on the bottom of the letter as well as list the salon she worked out of so there would be no questions about legitimacy.
Once I had these 2 pieces the rest of the work was easy, I just sent a copy of my photo ID and filled out the application form and sent a check ($35.00) for the amount of the annual fee. Keep in mind that MAC takes a VERY long time with this process. It was well over a month before I heard back from them via email that my application was received and was under review, I think it was a few more weeks after that, then I got my approval application that said I should see my card in the mail within a couple of weeks.

After I succeeded at getting the MAC pro I decided to investigate more into other brands that I love and found that the process was almost identical for a few companies and I now have pro cards for MAC, Urban Decay and Bobbi Brown. 
Urban Decay's was the easiest by far, you can submit basically the same documents but they prefer it to be done via email, I was approved for my pro-discount literally the very next day. The discount amount is 40% and the only bad thing about this program is you are only allowed to use your discount online and it restricts MANY items (like no NAKED Palettes!). So it's definitely worth your time because it takes almost no time, but it still is kind of a bummer that it's so limiting. Especially since so many artists have the naked palette in their kits...
Bobbi Brown was also the same process and the discount of 40% can only be used when purchasing items online. But to my knowledge it applies to all products, which is great because their pro-palettes are in the $250.00 range with is incredibly expensive, so the discount sort of brings it down to normal range.

Currently, I am working on getting the Makeup Forever Pro card, but they do not accept the letter of reference so I'm going to look through their required documents and see what I can do to apply.

So that's my experience! Kind of drawn out but I just wanted to make you all aware that you do not have to pay full price if you are a working artist and looking to expand your kit! If you have any stories, questions or comments about this, please share.

7 people left comments on: "How To: Get a Pro Discount"

  1. Did you ever get your mufe pro card? MAC was my introductory card too!

  2. No I never got the MUFE discount, but I did get one's for Naimies and Nigels in LA and both of these stores sell MUFE. I do have a makeup artist cert now so I'm thinking of looking into it again :)

    1. Can you explain your Naimie's process? You don't need a cert in my state.

  3. Has MAC changed their requirements on applying for their mac pro?

    1. not that I know of. But at this point I just have to renew mine, not re-apply

  4. This post is worthy of appreciation, looking forward to more exciting! discount uk