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It all comes down to the root - at least with language, an interesting part of a language. How a word can mean what it does and what you want it to mean in your context.  The root of the word "discipline" comes from the Latin discipulus meaning “one who takes,” to later disciplina meaning "instruction," to discipline as we know it today, to mean "training" and also "a branch of knowledge."

The are many branches of the makeup tree.

My idea of discipline is a merge of both -  the training of makeup skills, and also the specialization, the branch of knowledge.

Most makeup artists that have made a name in the field have had success in a single field. They also speak highly of training and that they never stop learning.  You could say they have discipline  and a discipline.

While makeup itself is a discipline, there are many varied areas of makeup that one can specialize in. There are two schools of thought around makeup artistry and skill set.

One is that a makeup artist should study and perfect a single field of makeup artistry. They work at it for many years so they become a master of it and can become eminent their field. The other thought is that it is good to know all areas makeup or many and therefore an artist has more chances of getting hired.

Discipline is not just the single vision of makeup but also the diversity makeup - it's not like each of us loves and embraces every type of makeup out there. But we can perfect at least one - or a few.

I don't personally know - I stumbled upon her feed on Instagram and was blown away by her meticulous eyeliner looks, ones that she had perfected in a way that is colorfully unique. Definitely a liner discipline here! I love how she has mastered this look of soft, perfect blending with sharp, hard liner. And she pulls it off with obvious inherent talent.  Discipline pays off! 

As individuals users of makeup - we may not need to master or have a particular discipline - but as more extreme users like drag, cosplay or professionals like photography and fashion artists - honing in can be well worth it.

Here is a quick scope of the various makeup Disciplines:


Beauty makeup is about creating the look of perfect skin and bringing the best features of the face forward. Pro artists use pro products to last all day and to have the advantage of higher pigmentation levels. Pro products also tend to have less color change and work fast because of that level of pigmentation. Contrived natural or fierce drama, it's about what modern beauty is of the moment. 

Photography and Fashion

Makeup for photography and is for that one perfect static image. Did we say perfect?  Yes, we did, because for fashion, industrials or portraits it’s about bringing the lighting,  face, and mood into one perfect moment in  time. Clean makeup work is requried and HD quality is essential .


Film makeup artists must be able to employ a multitude of makeup skills. No doubt you've seen a period movie with beauty makeup and special effects. That takes a thorough understanding of many makeup disciplines.


Theater makeup artists must be able to convey the essence of a character to an audience that may be close up in an intimate theater or a great distance like grand opera at The Met. We are talking about in depth training of highlight and shadow here!

Special FX(Special Makeup)

Monsters and Zombies and Orcs – oh  my! Whether for film, zombie runs or  emergency responder training, creating realistic effects take different types of makeup and personalities.


Cosplay and Fantasy are about the game - that is looking like you just walked out of one Or a comic book or a movie! Part theatrical in spirit, but up close and personal. Creating fan art out of yourself or creating something new – we see the pattern here: Create!


We're talking BIG makeup here. REALLY Big! The art of transformation and the skill of using makeup to manipulate the face to a bring about a completely new image is the  basic idea of Drag Makeup.  But there is nothing basic about it. Color, countouring, blending, lashes galore. Great wigs and great wardrobe are a requisite to make the look work.


Makeup educators help build careers in makeup magic. Some in classrooms and some online. We support them all because makeup is one of the few cool careers you can learn and get paid for without a degree. And we must pay tribute to the kind souls who show the rest of us how it’s done.

You may find that you already have a makeup discipline or you want to explore them all.  You may not like a division of makeup is even considered, makeup is makeup.  I kind of get like that sometime.  Somehow though, the idea of knowing and having your sight set on an area and goal is a path that just feels right. Whatever your Discipline is or where ever you want to go with makeup - enjoy and celebrate it!  It's not the just the Discipline, but the training and dedication that matters. And the fun and feeling accomplishment that comes with it!

When MakeUpMania began - almost two decades ago - I was working in the film industry and was in awe of the varied makeup I was exposed to. Probably the reason I ever went into makeup was for the products. I loved makeup so much! I loved it since I was a little girl and I still love it. One of reason filmed seemed to woo me , was that I would have to pick one discipline - I could not decide.  I had a blast on the several films that required different disciplines in one film - maybe even one scene!

We see so much talent on social media that are witnessing that love of a type of makeup has lead to outstanding work.  Uber outstanding work! And not just by professional paid working artists.  But by thousands of posters all over the net. Building on talent over talent in the social world has lead to work that was unimaginable just a few decades ago.  And much of it is divided into a a sub-culture of a genre of a disciple.  It seems that by narrowing in we are getting more expansive!

So when we re-did this year - it was a homage to all these areas of makeup.  Not just beauty, the big realm of makeup artistry, not just film (my Alma Mater in makeup), but all Disciplines, all makeup genres, all types, all that is loved by all in makeup. We just want to keep l loving it all and support it all in anyway we can. 

While bumping around, doing a little research for this, I found this quote on Discipline. I liked and thought this is a good way to end this blog, helping me to remember that Discipline helps not only in our art but in our life as well.

To think good thoughts, however, requires effort. This is one of the things that discipline — training — is about.

James Clavell - Shōgun

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