We can’t turn on the TV or even open Facebook right now without being bombarded with the latest news on the coronavirus. The number of infections, number of deaths, borders closing, panic buying, heck, even fights breaking out over toilet paper!
It’s too easy to get caught up in the hysteria and join in the panic.
As makeup artists we have even more reason for concern as our very livelihood is being threatened – we touch people’s faces for a living! Jobs are cancelling every day, and as I write this, there is a real threat that our government may cancel smaller gatherings like weddings, as they have in Italy.
So what do we do?
Today I’m sharing my top tips for what to do in the face of a pandemic.
1 Stay calm and practice mindfulness. I know, I know, easier said than done right? We need to be conscious about our thoughts and focus. Our success is at least 50% dependent on our mindset. We can’t control what happens, we can only control how we react to it.
ACTION TIP: Don’t turn on the TV or go onto Facebook or your news apps for the first hour when you get up. Use that time to meditate, journal, learn something new, or spend time being present with your loved ones. Play a game with your kids. Eat breakfast with your partner. Call your parents or grandparents and talk about something else. Write down a list of 10 things you are grateful for.
2 Focus on what you can do, not what you can’t. While jobs might be cancelling, and your empty diary can be a cause for concern, this WILL pass. Some freelancers will be forced back into other jobs. But within a few months the lockdowns and quarantines will be over, and people always get married. The economy will bounce back, businesses will start advertising again, and demand for makeup artists will pick up.
ACTION TIP: Use this time to strengthen your business foundations and catch up on those things that you might not get done when it’s super busy. Update your website or portfolio; get your accounts up to date; gather testimonials from past clients; consider starting a customer loyalty program.
3 Practice Hygiene. Hygiene is one of the most important parts of our job, and now, it is more important than ever. Review your hygiene practices, and reassure your clients. Maybe send out an email newsletter or write a blog post on how you care for your clients safety with your hygiene and sanitation practices.
ACTION TIP: Give your kit an overhaul. Deep clean everything. Chuck out old products. Take the pans out of custom palettes and clean under them. Downsize your kit while you’re at it!
4 Review your Contract. If you work with personal clients you should definitely have a contract with terms and conditions of your operations. Your contract should clearly set out your cancellation and refund policy, both in the event that your client cancels, and in the event that YOU cancel. Your contract should also have a “right to refuse service” clause, which covers things like your client turning up with an infectious disease.
ACTION TIP: Look over your contract. When was the last time you really read through it? Get legal advice if you think it could be lacking in some area.
5 Look at alternative ways to earn money. The reality is that a LOT of people are going to be stuck at home… and they will be bored. There will be many people out there who normally don’t have a lot of time, and now have a HEAP of it. Many businesses will be introducing “work from home” procedures, so while times might be difficult for us, there will be people out there who are still earning their income, but not having to commute to their jobs every day. They can’t go out to restaurants, bars and clubs for a while, they can’t go on overseas holidays, so they will be looking for other ways to be entertained (and, spend money)
ACTION TIP: Brainstorm ways that you could earn extra money. Get inventive! How can you take your business online? Do you have a YouTube channel? Can you offer 1:1 makeup lessons and do them over Zoom? Can you host makeup parties online? Online shopping is still a thing, can you be an affiliate for a brand?
While it may seem really grim right now, be assured, this too shall pass. Things will get better (ok, they will probably get a whole lot WORSE before they get better), but the industry will bounce back. In face, there will probably be a BOOM later this year, all those brides who have had to reschedule, all those businesses that need boosting by advertising. I predict that once this is over, things are going to get super busy.
I am sure that there will be a number of freelancers who’s businesses won’t survive this challenge. I don’t want that to be you, so join me each week and get my latest hints and tips on how you can weather the storm, and firm up your business foundation so that you are READY to go when things turn around. If you haven’t already, sign up to get my newsletter delivered straight to your inbox every Thursday at suelouise.com/list