Level 3 Diploma in Theatrical Special Effects Hair and Make-up – School Leaver

Hair and beauty student putting on make up onto a woman


The Level 3 Diploma in Makeup Artistry is an intensive course that gives you an introduction to the many avenues of makeup artistry and therefore is a great starting point to guide people into the areas that are most suitable for their skills and interests.

Course Content - What will I learn?

The course includes a variety of makeup subjects and requires students to complete research projects and practical applications for the following units: Fashion and Photographic Makeup including bridal, catwalk, commercial, editorial, airbrushing and fantasy fashion creations. Media Makeup including special effects, use of ready made prosthetics, casualty effects such as burns, cuts and wounds – creating characters for stage and film, period makeup and science fiction characters. Body Painting, from face and hair to full body. Hair and Wigs including various styling and setting techniques for fashion, stage and TV. You also complete essential studies in Camouflage Makeup – Health and Safety and Professionalism and Communication in the industry. Underpinning all these subjects is Creative Studies which incoporates the development of a research sketch book.

Am I right for the course?

The course develops students skills for a career path in Retail, TV, Film, Theatre and Fashion make-up professions. These creative industries are highly competitive, and are most suitable for individuals that are very passionate about makeup artistry and want to develop and mature into professional makeup artists’. The course requires students to attend every lesson and a 100% commitment to developing and practicing your makeup skills, knowledge and understanding through critical research, consistent independent technical practice. Students are required to complete a number of research projects and essay’s at level 3 in preparation for your final assessments. This full time course runs over 3 days as contact time in class and students are expected to undertake additional study outside of lessons. Students will also be expected to stay until 8:30pm one night which represents industry expectations

Four GCSEs at Grade 4 / C or above including English and successful completion of Level 2 Hair and Media Makeup or Level 2 Beauty Therapy qualification. Also potential students with previous experience in art, media, film, theatre and fashion will be considered.

There are 10 units in this qualification and each unit requires the completion of a written research project. On completion of written research projects, you will prepare for your final practical assessments in term 3 by researching and developing mood boards which are presented to your assessor. During practical assessments you will be questioned about the various aspects of your work and expected to demonstrate accurate knowledge and understanding about various aspects of makeup such as the products used, application methods, safety considerations, research undertaken etc.
Each assessment must be documented through photos and is prepared and presented in a portfolio which is submitted for the qualification.

Students are required to pay via the college Wisepay system for kit that includes the purchase of a uniform and a quality Charles Fox Makeup kit. There is also a professional photo shoot at the end of the course

Your course lecturers are professional working makeup artists and are trained teachers and assessors with many years of experience in the industry and in teaching. The course lessons are active, creative and intensive and designed to inspire and develop all the students towards creating great and interesting work for their final assessments. The various subjects in the course make for a very interesting mixture of lessons and due to the large number of makeup applications required, 100% attendance is mandatory. For every application, it is highly recommended that students who wish to create professional level work and gain access to working in this competitive industry must continue practising the skills in their own time. There is no such thing as naturally talented makeup artist’s. Successful makeup artist’s refine their skills by consistent dedication to practice – there is no other way but through constant practice.

What Next?

As soon as you start this course it is important to start thinking about what you want to do after you complete it! It takes many years to develop your career in makeup artistry and gaining work experience such as assisting a professional makeup artist in either fashion, TV or film is the industry standard in starting you off in the right direction to build your confidence and contacts while developing a CV and professional level portfolio. Further studies are recommended for those who would like more time and guidance to extend their skills. Popular foundation level and degree level makeup courses at university are highly competitive and generally require that you have a foundation degree in art. If you are interested in the creation and application of advanced level prosthetics for film and TV then studies in fine art, drawing and sculpture are essential.

Our Hair and Beauty courses enable you to work in a wide variety of salons, nail bars, spas, cruise ships, or even work abroad in luxury resorts. Depending on the level you choose to study, we recommend that you carry on climbing the ladder within Oaklands, and then onto university or into employment.

Potential careers:

  • Beauty Therapist
  • Theatrical and Media Makeup Artist
  • Nail Technician
  • Massage Therapist
  • Salon Management
  • Beauty Consultant
  • Reflexologist
  • Aromatherapist
  • Skincare Consultant
  • Hairdresser/stylist

Ready to take the next step?

Reaching your career goals is just a click away.


16-18 years old, no tuition fees apply to Full Time courses and fees subject to confirmation. Additional costs applicable to BHS courses.

For all two year courses fees shown above are per year.

Aged 19+ and planning to take a level 3 or above a different fee may apply. You may be eligible for an Advanced Learning Loan.

All HE courses (full and part time) are subject to tuition fees.

In need of more advice?

Contact our Admissions team to find out more about student fees and how they might apply to you.

Experience what the future
has to offer at Oaklands College

Studying at Oaklands is about finding out what you enjoy learning, with a huge range of courses including A Levels, BTECs and Apprenticeships our students are given a the opportunity to make their own academic choices, and thrive in a subject they enjoy.

Scroll to Top