A Cut Be­low

Hairstylists, who earn smaller checks than their coun­ter­parts in the makeup de­part­ment, cry foul over pay dis­par­ity

Variety - - Contents - Story by ZOE HEWITT

Hairstylists say they aren’t mak­ing as much as their makeup coun­ter­parts

in pro­duc­tion, no two de­part­ments seem more con­nected than hair and makeup. Makeup artists and hairstylists be­long to the same IATSE union lo­cal — 706. They share the same work trailer, stay on set for the same hours and of­ten even work on the same ac­tor at the same time.

Yet, in an in­dus­try where con­tract ne­go­ti­a­tions last for months and ev­ery cent must be jus­ti­fied, hair­styl­ist de­part­ment heads make al­most $650 less per week than their coun­ter­parts in the makeup de­part­ment, ac­cord­ing to the Show­biz La­bor Guide’s IATSE Ba­sic West Coast Agree­ment con­tract. And even though the ap­pli­ca­tion of “fa­vored na­tions” prac­tices of­ten mit­i­gates the dis­par­ity, the con­trac­tual re­al­ity per­sists.

Lo­cal 706 out­go­ing pres­i­dent Sue CabralEbert says the dif­fer­ence in pay is rooted in gen­der, go­ing back to the days when men were makeup artists and women did hair. “It’s dis­crim­i­na­tion,” she says, and “it’s in­grained in the cul­ture.”

Hair­styl­ist X, who prefers to re­main anony­mous for fear of ca­reer ret­ri­bu­tion, points out that each de­part­ment “works the same hours, and both have spe­cial artis­tic skills.” Hair­styl­ist Y, also anony­mous, fur­ther high- lights the pay in­equity, not­ing that stylists must go to school “for 1,600 hours and be li­censed by the state of Cal­i­for­nia, yet makeup artists don’t have to have any cre­den­tials, and still they get paid more.” Also, hairstylists must pay to re­new their li­censes reg­u­larly in or­der to work on union projects, while makeup artists aren’t re­quired to have any for­mal train­ing or reg­u­lated cre­den­tials.

“We’ve been try­ing for 25 years to get pay eq­uity, [but] we’re not the ones who hold the purse strings,” Cabral-ebert says. “The pro­duc­ers are. We’re try­ing to make it so they can’t say no, whether it’s through leg­is­la­tion or a court de­ci­sion.”

A makeup artist, who also prefers to re­main anony­mous, agrees: “It should be fair across the board. It would be dif­fer­ent if they were hir­ing lower- qual­ity hair peo­ple, but that’s not the case. Some­times on a show the hair­styl­ist has [decades of ex­pe­ri­ence]; the fact that their [con­tracted] num­bers are lower is just in­sane.”

Stu­dios’ use of the fa­vored na­tions prac­tice of­ten min­i­mizes the dif­fer­ence in pay, bud­get­ing the same amount for both

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.