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Level 3 Diploma in Special Effects Theatrical Make-Up & Hair

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Course Description

This course is for students who would like to work in the areas of theatrical, fashion, TV and photographic make-up. You will gain real experience working on live projects and client briefs as well as entering competitions. This will give you the opportunity to show your creativity and ability to work under pressure.

This course will give you a recognised qualification that demonstrates your knowledge, creative skills and understanding of the industry. You’ll also have the opportunity to show your inter-personal skills and professionalism through work in our own commercial Riverside salon.


City & Guilds VRQ Diploma in Special Effects, Theatrical Make-up and Hair (QCF)

Entry Requirements

A minimum of 4 GCSEs grade C/4 or above to include English or Mathematics are required to begin this course. Due to the skills involved, students will also have had to complete a Level 2 qualification of either an NVQ Level 2 or VRQ Level 2 in Hair and Media Makeup.


This course is taught by a mix of classroom teaching followed by practical sessions to demonstrate understanding of key special effects, theatrical make-up and hair principles. All level 3 students will have the opportunity to work with their own clients in our Riverside salon.

All staff have a great deal of experience within this area and deliver excellent teaching standards which allows students to unlock their potential and gain valuable practical skills and knowledge.

Topics on this course include:

  • Health and safety
  • Airbrush make-up
  • Design and apply body art
  • Fashion and photographic make-up
  • Creative hair design
  • Style and fit postiche
  • Media and special effects make-up
  • Prosthetic pieces and bald caps
  • Competition work

Work Experience

Students have the opportunity to take part in many local and national competitions and support our theatre productions throughout the year.


Following the completion of this course, students have a choice of possible progression routes such as the Level 4 in Theatrical and Media Make-up, Higher Education or employment.

For those students wishing to go straight into employment, possible careers can also include employed or freelance make-up artist in theatre, film or fashion or teaching.

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