|Makeup & Hair Sponsorships|
Have you ever seen your favorite makeup artist or hair stylist's name attached to a cosmetics company or hair salon and wondered what that meant? You know, Diane Kendal for Aveda or Ward for Bumble and Bumble. I know I did.
I first became aware of this practice six years ago when I was hunting for an agency in New York City. I was baffled by the many artists listing companies in editorial credits–not agencies. Did these artists work for these companies instead of agencies? I had to find out.
After calling the various cosmetic companies and salons, I was shocked to learn that most of the makeup and hair artists had nothing to do with the company other than getting paid to attach the company’s name on editorial pages. Hair stylists, on the other hand, usually had some affiliation with the salon they were advertising–the stylists cut or colored hair on specific days, but not always. “We pay several hair stylists hundreds of dollars a month for sponsorships,” (sometimes referred to as credit sales) says a manager at a top Manhattan salon. “And I haven’t seen any of them in the salon in over a year. But having their names in the big magazines month after month brings in big business.”
So that’s the bottom line–money! Susie Smith in Salt Lake City may never look like Kate Moss, but she can use the products these artists’ claim to use on Kate Moss or get her hair cut in the salons mentioned. It’s also about prestige. “Having our name in the big magazines allows us to charge a lot more for services,” says one salon manager. “It’s good advertising for us.”
So how much money are these companies paying artists? Here’s where it all gets tricky. All the companies and makeup artists or hair stylists I talked to refused to go on record about the amount of money being exchanged. “I don’t think it’s kosher to tell you what we pay our artists,” says a public relations professional at a leading cosmetic company. “We pay every artist a little different and I don’t want to start a war.”
Sobeit. What I have been able to uncover is that makeup artists and hair stylists get paid with free products, money or both. Dollar amounts begin at about $100 per page of editorial and go up to about a high of $350 (on the average).
But it doesn’t stop there. The big money is in being a spokesperson for a company. My deep-throat at the cosmetic company told me a spokesperson gets paid an annual salary–sometimes in the high five to six figures–plus editorial credit dollars. What does a spokesperson do? Sally Hirshberger said in numerous magazine articles that she helped develop the new Sheer Blonde products by John Frieda. And when makeup artist Sonia Koshak was involved with Aveda, she taught classes at company functions and helped develop new colors. Unfortunately for Koshak, company loyalty is premium. Rumor has it that Aveda let her go when she co-wrote Cindy Crawford’s Revlon ???????????? ????????? ???????? endorsed beauty book. Don’t pity Koshak though, she has her own signature line available at Target stores.
So, my fellow artists and hair stylists, it all sounds pretty good, huh? Good money coupled with good editorial can’t be beat. But those are the key words–good editorial. You must have top, top, tippy top editorial pages to even be considered for a sponsorship. Vogue, Harper’s Baazar, even Glamour will do nicely, thank you. “Good magazines are everything,” says another cosmetics public relations specialist. “And it must be consistant.”
These people mean business. I know one makeup artist who has done every platinum plugging hip-hop artist on the charts today, but cannot get a sponsorship because her work appears in magazines deemed less than tippy top. “I’ve done Vibe, Spin and Rolling Stone,” she says with a sigh. “But I can’t get a makeup [sponsorship] deal.”
So there you have it. Sponsorships are great, but getting one is not easy. If you think you have what it takes, send your book crammed with tear sheets to cosmetic companies or hair salons and see what happens–and good luck.
represented by Halley Resources Inc. in New York City.