How To Become a Stylist for a Celebrity

Updated December 12, 2022

If you have a passion for trends, celebrities and styling others, you may excel as a celebrity stylist. They follow current trends and select outfits for celebrities that reflect these styles. Earning a job as a celebrity stylist requires industry knowledge and a strong portfolio. In this article, we review what a celebrity stylist is, what they do, the skills they hold and how to become a stylist for a celebrity.

What is a celebrity stylist?

A celebrity stylist dresses, fits and styles public figures for events, such as film or television productions, advertising campaigns, concerts, music videos or any other public appearances. Many of them work closely with makeup artists and hairstylists to ensure the celebrity's outfit matches with other elements of their look. Celebrity stylists typically act as a consultant for the celebrity by staying updated on trends to ensure they look fashionable at all events.

Related: What Are Makeup Careers?

What does a celebrity stylist do?

A celebrity stylist chooses a famous person's wardrobe and advises them on clothing items, accessories and shoes to wear to an event. They typically order celebrities' clothes and find outfits that follow current trends. Celebrity stylists also work closely with clients to learn more about their style preferences. They select outfits that complement a celebrity's personality, image, hair and makeup to grab the attention of fans or news publications. Job duties of a celebrity stylist include:

  • Selecting clothing and accessory pieces for publications, advertisements, music videos, films or television shows and concerts

  • Building a recognizable and appealing fashion image for celebrities

  • Staying updated on current and popular trends, fashion designers and fashion labels

  • Conducting research on potential accessories, fabrics and clothing construction for celebrities to wear at upcoming events

  • Collaborating with tailors, designers, photographers, hair stylists, makeup artists and the media to ensure celebrities looks fashionable at all events

  • Going to fashion shows to uncover new styles or looks for celebrities to wear at different events

  • Predicting upcoming fashion trends for celebrities to wear first

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Celebrity stylist skills

Celebrity stylists must stay updated on current fashion trends at all times to ensure the celebrity they're styling wears these fashions before others. They must also have effective interpersonal skills to listen to and understand the needs and preferences of celebrities to ensure they're providing them with outfits and accessory pieces well-suited for their personality and image. Common skills celebrity stylists should have to excel in their role include:

  • Attention to detail

  • Research skills

  • Creativity and imagination abilities

  • Design skills

  • Interpersonal and verbal communication abilities

  • Confidence and self-motivation

  • Strong knowledge of the fashion industry

  • Ability to spot styles and trends

  • Networking skills

Related: 18 Fashion Designer Skills

How to become a celebrity stylist

Becoming a successful celebrity stylist typically takes time to gain the necessary education and industry experience. Follow these steps to become a successful celebrity stylist:

1. Earn the necessary education

After graduating high school, enroll in a college, university or other educational institution that offers either a bachelor's or associate's degree in fashion design or fashion merchandising. These degree programs offer courses in a wide variety of subjects, like computer-aided fashion design, trend forecasting, history of fashion, fashion show production and textiles.

Some accredited institutions also offer fashion styling certificates. You'll typically take courses in areas like clothing and accessory design, fashion business practices, fashion forecasting and color theory.

Related: How Much Do Fashion Designers Make?

2. Pursue an internship

Either before or after graduating from a fashion program, pursue an internship to gain hands-on training and experience in fashion and styling. Many fashion programs offer internship opportunities for college credit. You can receive first-hand experience working alongside designers, fashion retailers or other professional stylists. Some of them may have connections to the industry who can provide you with full-time opportunities after graduation.

3. Build your portfolio

Once you've gained experience in the fashion industry, you can add your work to a professional portfolio. Your fashion and design portfolio should contain pictures of the styling projects you're most proud of and have gained positive feedback from.

If you've yet to earn professional experience, share examples of school projects and assignments you've completed that may impress hiring managers or industry professionals. Some educational programs may even teach you how to compile a professional fashion portfolio as well.

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4. Stay updated on fashion trends

As you pursue opportunities in the fashion industry, trends and styles may consistently update accordingly. It's important to conduct constant research and update yourself on these changing trends to ensure you're always aware of what's currently in style. You may attend an interview where the hiring manager asks about the latest trends, which gives you the opportunity to Impress them with your knowledge and experience by always remaining up to date on what's performing well in the fashion industry.

5. Get industry experience through freelance work

Since the fashion industry can be competitive, with several candidates applying for celebrity stylist roles, it may take a while before you can earn a full-time opportunity. Consider completing freelance projects and work independently to style other people who may be lower-profile celebrities or public figures. This is a great way to get your start, build portfolio experience and meet more people in the industry who could connect you with potential high-level opportunities.

6. Network with other fashion industry professionals

Attend industry events, like fashion shows or conferences to build your networking skills and introduce yourself to industry professionals. Craft a captivating elevator pitch as you introduce yourself to potential employers. An elevator pitch is a 30 to 60-second speech that introduces yourself, briefly describes your background and details why you'd be a great addition to their team.

Bring your portfolio to show to others and distribute business cards, if possible, to make sure potential employers have your information and know how to contact you for potential opportunities.

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