Media Makeup Student gains work experience in Lapland

Matthew knight, one of the Media Makeup Level 3 students had the opportunity to gain work experience working the Christmas season as a makeup artist in Lapland at a resort.

We couldn’t wait to hear about Matthews trip and how it benefitted his studies and inspired him to want to take his studies further.

“I went out on 17 November 2022 and for the first week it was really chilled out, they explained everything to us, and we had an induction. They showed us around the resort and we got introduced to all the face charts for the special elves so that we could learn the looks. We looked at the wigs and the prosthetics for the Santa’s, how to take care of them, wash them and curl them.”

santas wigs

“We had the first week and a half induction period to learn and get to grips with everything, we were then thrown into the start of the season. The head makeup artist taught us and showed us the ropes for the first 3 days. Every single day you’d be doing something different.”

We asked Matthew if working in the industry allowed him to pick up any new techniques and skills that he could bring back to his Level 3 course.

“I learnt techniques to bring back to my Level 3 Makeup course at college, I learnt different things in Lapland and it was also great to apply the different techniques I learnt in college on my work experience at the resort.”

“I’m known at college for being quite slow with my hair and I’ve literally got so fast at hair and makeup. At Lapland, doing the elves, you had 15 minutes to do a whole face of makeup, we had to keep going down the line of elves until we’d done everyone. It was really hectic in the morning. At first, it was overwhelming, we were all struggling a bit and people were waiting for their makeup to be done. It was really stressful but we got to grips with it really fast.”


It’s so beneficial for students to gain work experience in the industries they wish to pursue careers in, we asked Matthew his views on work placements and how it boosted his confidence.

“I would definitely recommend the experience, I am really shy and struggle to come out of my shell. It helped me massively talking to complete strangers. I thought I was fine on the journey to the airport, as soon as my family left, I was terrified. Straight away, I went on the group chat and found the people I was going to be flying out there with. By the end of it, we had a little family and it was nice to have people to relate to.”

the elves

The last time we spoke to Matthew he told us how after college he just wanted to be purely client-based, it’s great how an experience like this has allowed him to realise that he wants to take his skillset further and knowledge base further with higher education.

“I already knew I wanted to go to university and do more education but being away with the students who were at university solidified things for me. I started writing my personal statement and got everyone to check it.”

The course Matthew wants to study is Hair and Makeup for Fashion, focussing on visual art and design.

“My level 3 has enough qualifications to allow me to get on to the course alongside my level 2.

There are work experience opportunities such as fashion week, they’ve had the head artist of MAC speak to them, it looks incredible. The London College of fashion is just dedicated to art forms. It’s the second most popular uni in the world for doing the course I want to do. I’ve always wanted to work on the runways and do magazine edits.

London’s a big populated area so there are more opportunities to practice with clients, I would also like to do photoshoots or like small films.”

Matthew finishes his level 3 and then he hopes to go straight off to London in September.

“There are so many opportunities that come your way with the course, I’ve always said that Level 2 and 3 is an all-rounder, you learn about everything. You do a bit of theatre work, high fashion Avant Gard and the era looks, it pretty much allows you to do everything.”

Are you interested in studying Media Makeup at Chesterfield College? Find out more about our courses and how we can help you be successful within the hair and beauty industry.

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