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When to Hire Hair, Makeup, and Wardrobe Pros for Your Video

When your on-screen talent has a pimple, so does the production itself. Hiring hair, makeup, and wardrobe pros for your video production will help your performers, and thus your video production, look their best.

Why You Should Hire A Makeup, Hair, and Wardrobe Crew for Your Video

Your video production needs makeup, hair, and wardrobe crew for three reasons:

  • To help on-screen talent look their best and feel confident
  • To help on-screen talent better match their character’s appearance
  • To collaborate with the director of photography, lighting crew, and on-screen talent to ensure how a performer looks matches the director’s vision

Whether you’re a corporate employee appearing on camera for the first time or a veteran performer with a hundred credits, it is an act of bravery to appear on screen. That means they deserve to look their best with the help of a makeup, hair, and wardrobe team.

Helping your on-screen talent look their best gives them the confidence they need to perform at a high level. You don’t need to provide everyone who stands in front of a camera a complete makeover, but you can help hide a temporary skin blemish or tame a wandering strand of hair. Changing out a sweat-soaked shirt can be life-saving for the performer.

This help allows your on-screen talent to focus on their work instead of worrying about whether hundreds or thousands of strangers will see that acne flare-up.

Your crew also helps on-screen talent look more like their character. A sprinkle of gray in someone’s hair can make them look older. A pair of glasses can make them look more intelligent. And a suit can make them look like a respectable business person instead of someone with a liberal arts degree and the shame of their blue-collar family.

Finally, how someone looks in real life may not match their appearance on-screen because cameras capture images differently than the human eye. An experienced makeup, hair, and wardrobe crew knows this and can help ensure that on-screen talent looks as the director intends.

That is, makeup, hair, and wardrobe professionals provide another creative voice to any video project. When allowed to collaborate, they can help match the director’s vision and reinforce themes or visual motifs while ensuring that production continues smoothly.

How to Maximize Your Makeup, Hair, and Wardrobe Budget for Video

The best way to maximize your budget here is through preparation. When you hire your makeup, hair, and wardrobe artists during pre-production, you allow them to begin collaborating with DPs, lighting crews, and on-screen talent. Then they’ll work proactively to ensure you don’t waste time and money during production.

Then, should an issue occur during production, they can problem solve quickly and effectively. They’ll be ready to sew rips, provide touch-ups, and prevent hair-based continuity errors from pausing shooting. 

Of course, not every video production has a budget for a deep bench of makeup, hair, and wardrobe artists. In these cases, you may ask some of your on-screen talent to do their own hair and makeup or bring in their own wardrobe.

On small shoots, this shouldn’t generally be an issue. For instance, an executive giving an interview in a conference room probably has brand-appropriate attire they can wear. In that case, you may only need a single person to fulfill all three roles to ensure the CEO looks their best.

However, it’s important to remember that everything you ask your performers to do that isn’t performing will pull their attention away you’re paying them to do. Instead of working on the script, they may be spending more time getting their look right, which may cause delays and, eventually, budget overruns.

If you decide to go this route, though, there are some things to keep in mind. For instance, ask them to bring in a variety of outfits so the director and crew can pick the right one for the scene. Bringing only one option runs the risk of delays while other options are brought in, or the performer makes a round-trip home to pick up a new selection.

A Note on Diversity

We touched briefly on how people look in real life doesn’t always match their on-screen appearance. This can especially be the case when you’re working with a variety of skin tones and hair types.

Some of the responsibility here will fall onto the shoulders of the DP and lighting crew more than it does the makeup, hair, or wardrobe team. However, an experienced team can collaborate and work to ensure everyone, not just those with particular complexions, look their best on camera.

It’s also important to consider the hair needs of your on-screen talent. For example, some hair stylists don’t have as much experience with curly hair. Often, that results in curly-haired talent working on themselves while their straight-follicled castmates get professional attention. In turn, the performer left to their own devices is pulled away from the work you hired them to do to focus on something you should’ve provided. 

For those with a singular focus on the budget, it’s important to note that these aren’t expensive fixes. In most cases, it doesn’t cost an extra dollar to understand and fulfill the needs of your on-screen talent.

In fact, considering diversity for in-front-of- and behind-the-camera positions can keep costs low. It gives you access to the broadest pool of talent available while creating a positive, professional atmosphere that gives everyone the chance to work at their highest level. Considering the needs of your cast also means that production can keep moving forward instead of shutting down while hair, makeup, or wardrobe needs to be re-done.

Help Your Talent Achieve Their Best Look for Your Video

Your production needs a hair, makeup, and wardrobe team whenever you want your on-screen talent to look their best. Luckily, hiring professionals during your pre-production process can create a collaborative environment that fulfills the director’s vision while minimizing needless breaks during shooting.

For more advice on how to make your B2B video production a success, head to The Video Reformation Blog.