Are you a makeup artist looking to diversify your skillset? Read on to learn why this skill has been invaluable over the course of my makeup career, and why it’s not quite as violent as it sounds! Below I share my passion for an invaluable income source during dry spells – hair punching.

hair punching is not as violent as it sounds
woman punching fur onto wolf prosthetic makeup appliance

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In This Episode We Cover:

  • Why diversifying your skill set is imperative in this day and age.
  • What makes hair-punching a valuable skill to have.
  • Some exciting news about what’s to come if you want to work with me.


click here to read the transcript!


Episode 22: Show notes

teacher and students inworkshop

We’re going to take a detour from our usual makeup discussions to dive into the fascinating world of hair punching. Are you ready?

Now, before your imagination runs wild, let me reassure you that hair punching is not as violent as it sounds.

In fact, it’s a highly specialized skill that makeup artists like myself have found invaluable in our careers.

So sit back, grab your favorite cup of coffee, and let’s delve into the intriguing world of hair punching!

Diversifying Skills for Success

In the constantly evolving world of makeup, being a jack of all trades and mastering multiple skills has become somewhat essential.

While it’s crucial to excel in one particular area, being versatile and capable of accomplishing various tasks adds tremendous value to your repertoire. Whether you’re a movie makeup artist doubling as an esthetician, or a makeup effects professional with hairdressing skills, diversifying your skill set opens up new opportunities.

Hair Punching Defined

So, what exactly is hair punching?

It’s a highly specific skill within the makeup effects field that involves inserting hairs, such as human or synthetic fibers, into materials like silicon and foam latex.

This technique allows makeup artists to create realistic or fantastical hair effects for different characters and creatures.

One of the most exciting applications of hair punching is the creation of three-dimensional eyebrows on silicon appliances. By punching hair into these appliances, makeup artists can achieve a more realistic and seamless look when applying them to the performers.

The Value of Hair Punching

Hair punching, while niche, has proven to be incredibly useful for makeup artists like myself.

It is a unique way to enhance the overall appearance of prosthetic appliances and allows for quick on-the-spot adjustments and recreations.

Let’s face it: in the unpredictable world of filmmaking, last-minute changes are inevitable. The ability to adapt and recreate hair work in challenging conditions can be a career-saving skill.

Amd often-times, you can be on set out in the middle of nowhere, far from the effects house who built your makeup effects (including hair work) and things can change. Or deadlines shift, and your prosthetics show up without any hair work completed at all.

Even with just some hair-punching knowledge, you can confidently tackle these unexpected challenges.

Embracing the Niche

Hair punching has become a passion for many makeup artists, myself included, to opening doors to exciting opportunities.
And as a result educational workshops and online courses have emerged, catering to artists who want to hone their hair-punching skills. These resources provide a platform for artists worldwide to connect, learn, and grow in this specialized area.
For me personally, teaching hair punching workshops and seeing the tremendous response from fellow artists has been incredibly rewarding.

It’s such a joy to share this expertise and witness the growth of other passionate makeup artists, hairstylists, and perhaps budding hair-technicians – yes you can just specialize in hair punching if you like. Become known for it, and you’ll never be out of work again!

The Exciting News

Now, here’s the unofficial scoop just for you, my loyal listener.

I’m thrilled to announce that I’m currently in the process of developing an online course entirely dedicated to hair-punching eyebrows!
This course will cater to both beginners and those who want to enhance their existing skills.

If you’re interested in embarking on this exciting journey with me, be sure to join the waitlist at

By signing up, you’ll be guaranteed to be first in line when the doors open, and receive exclusive updates, making you one of the first to know when the course is about to launch.

As this episode comes to a close, I hope you’ve enjoyed this brief excursion into the world of hair punching.

Whether you’re a makeup artist looking to diversify your skills or simply intrigued by the artistry behind this technique, hair punching offers an exciting and unique perspective within the field.

Embracing niche skills such as hair punching can lead to unexpected opportunities and elevate your career to new heights.

So, keep an eye out for my upcoming online course and join me on this thrilling hair-punching adventure!


Click here to listen to this episode!


Episode Transcript

[00:00:00]: We’re kind of doing a 180 today as I chat about something that has become a bit of a vertical in my makeup career.
And I mention it because it has been, at times, an invaluable income source when my makeup work has dwindled or in between really big and demanding projects that I could usually do this work from home. Generally, jobs such as these would have a much shorter time frame than, say, a three to six months feature film or an entire TV series, or let’s say, an overseas project as well, working far away from home or with a long drive.
Now, if there was one piece of advice that I could give myself at age 21 or to anyone starting out in makeup today, it would be this to be really good and known for one thing, but to be prepared to know how to do many things and to do those things fairly well. You don’t have to be the best person in the world, but be prepared and know how to do many things.

[00:01:42]: So perhaps for you, that looks like you’re a movie makeup artist, but you’re also an esthetician and you work Saturdays at a local business, or perhaps Monday to Friday you work in a makeup effects shop, but you’re also a hairdresser or a trainee hairdresser working weekends in a busy salon.
Both of these examples mean that in between projects, you can step into those roles in more of a full-time position or something like that. I know it can be tough, especially when you’re working two jobs, but I feel strongly that it can be well worth it when the work dries up. Case in point, 2020 and now 2023.

There are many options when it comes to diversifying, and while this may contradict my beliefs of yesteryear if you remember the old phrase, jack of all trades, master of none. Well, as I get older, and as this world that we live in gets more and more unpredictable, the more I find that that little old phrase isn’t quite as true for me as it used to be. Okay, so back to what I was talking about hair punching. If you’re still scratching your head and you’re confused as to what on earth I’m talking about, hair punching is a highly specific skill within the makeup effects field that involves inserting hairs, sometimes human.

[00:03:07]: I know it’s a bit gross. Sometimes yak, mohair, fur and synthetic fibers into materials such as silicon and foam latex to create realistic and sometimes unrealistic or creature or human hair effects for whatever the job may call for.
One of my favorite applications of this job is to punch eyebrows onto silicon appliances. Now, I just want to add that what we call the piece that has been sculpted, molded, and run in silicon is an appliance. It’s what you apply onto your performer. And I love to punch eyebrows onto silicon appliances to create a realistic-looking eyebrow so that when the makeup artist applies or glues on the silicone piece, it already has the eyebrows on it that are three dimensional. Talk about a niche, right?
So while the word punching might be a bit extreme, it really just refers to the action of pushing or inserting the hair inside the material to replicate a hair or hairs coming out of the skin. And the funny thing is, this has been an incredibly useful niche for me as a makeup artist.

[00:04:24]: As I mentioned, I love punching eyebrows. I even taught some live workshops on the very specific subject here in Los Angeles just this year, and they were so much fun, and I’ve had so much of a response from artists all over the world, actually, that I’m currently in the process of turning it into an online course.
And this is something that I’m really excited about, and I’m kind of sharing with you here first and unofficially, so stay tuned. Whether you already hair punch or you’ve never done it, but you’re really interested and you’d like to learn with me, I’ll keep you posted as we get closer.
Another reason hair punching can be invaluable as a skill for a makeup artist is you can be out in the middle of nowhere and your prosthetic appliances show up for you to use on your job. But you do a makeup test as you usually do, only the director wants to change something. Or perhaps your actor gets recast. And the work that was done beforehand in the workshop, which is a zillion miles away, has to be redone and on the spot, and usually really quickly.

[00:05:35]: Or worse still, the hair work wasn’t even done in the first place because the deadline for the work to be built was super fast and they didn’t have time to do it. It can be pretty scary, but if you have some amount of knowledge and skills, you can make it work.
And that’s what’s great about these niche skills such as hair punching, ventilating, also known as knotting or tying. So I just wanted to introduce you to a technique that it truly has been a savior for me in my career, and it’s something that I’ve grown to love doing and also love teaching. And if you’d like to up your skills or learn as a complete beginner, I have the best news for you right now. I’ve got a healthy waitlist for my brand new course that focuses purely on hair-punching eyebrows. So if you go to so it’s just punching. There’s no g in there, so

[00:06:36]: You can sign up right now.

As I mentioned, I’m currently creating the course, which is really exciting, and I can’t wait for it to be finished and to reveal it to you and launch it to the world, because there’s not many courses like it, and there are very few really good hair punches out there. So it’s a good skill to have in your back pocket, for sure.
But in the meantime, please feel free to jump on my waitlist. I will keep you informed with all updates, and you will be the first to know when my course launches.
Okay, this was really fun for me. It’s a little sidestep from makeup, but it’s kind of in the world of makeup and makeup effect. So I hope you’ve enjoyed it.

[00:07:14]: I hope you learned something, and I look forward to seeing you next time. Okay, bye.


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