• Study mode: Full Time
  • Location: Creative Media Skills | High Wycombe
  • Duration: 2 Years
  • Start Date: September 2020

Course Overview

A major production’s hair and makeup department might have 40 people working in more than 15 different roles. At Bucks, we’ll help you join a creative community and master the magic of prosthetics, wigs, media makeup and more.

We’ve linked up with industry specialists Creative Media Skills (CMS) to create this two-year accelerated course. Based mostly at Pinewood Studios, you’ll learn in their top teaching spaces just along from real film sets (in fact, Lucasfilm, creators of Star Wars, is practically next door).

  • Get ready for industry in just two years with this accelerated option
  • Learn from industry experts in the Creative Media Skills teaching spaces, based at Pinewood Studios
  • Explore the theory behind hair and makeup with support from the Bucks teaching team, based at our High Wycombe Campus
  • Understand what it takes to set up as a freelancer with our entrepreneurial skills module
  • Master the skills you need for a range of hair and makeup roles – from prosthetic technician to wig supervisor.

More placements, more choices

Bucks is a Placements Plus university. So, whatever degree you do, you can be sure there’ll be plenty of industry-relevant opportunities on offer, to help you get into your chosen field.

We’ll also prepare you for work beforehand, with special skills for work training, further boosting your CV, and building skills employers will value. In recognition of the value we place on these skills we have incorporated this experience into your study time.

Placements Plus is all about helping you get some valuable experience under your belt while you’re a student. To increase your choices later, and help you get the graduate-level job you want.

Course Details


Bright lights. Incredible equipment. Famous faces. Nothing compares to the buzz you’ll feel working on set. The UK is currently one of the world’s leading centres for film and TV productions. And, with employers struggling to find professionals with the right skills, there’s never been a better time to become part of this exciting industry.

The course is just two years, but you’ll learn everything you need to know, and feel ready for industry by the time you graduate. We’ll be honest, it might feel intense at times, and we’ll expect you to challenge yourself. But it will all be worth it when you’re qualified to work around the globe on major productions!

You’ll split your time between Bucks and Creative Media Skills, based at Pinewood Studios. Our teaching team will give you insight into the theory that underpins hair and makeup for film, while CMS bring in experts with years of experience to share industry know-how.

Being part of the Pinewood Studios community, you’ll have the chance to network with professionals. And there are lots of events you can take part in – from watching the latest screenings to listening to fascinating industry talks.

Styles that fit a story

The practical elements of our course are designed with industry in mind. On the course, you’ll explore pre-production and film set etiquette. We’ll help you understand the rules, roles and responsibilities of individuals in a production team, as well as explaining who you will report to and the expectations within a professional context.

It’s key you master different makeup techniques, so we’ll help you explore a range of areas such as prosthetics and special effect makeup. At the same time, you’ll experiment with a range of materials to understand what it takes to bring characters to life.

It’s not just about crafting something that looks great, it will be your job to create character designs that fit a script. We’ll teach you about various period hairstyles and show you how to recreate them. Most importantly, you’ll understand the history and theory that informs your designs.

Get ready for success

Throughout the course, you’ll have the opportunity to collaborate with students from other courses, such as those on the costume design or performing arts degrees. This will give you the confidence you need to work with people in roles such as wardrobe assistants and costume designers.

In your second year, you’ll get to grips with professional practice, and we’ll help you develop essential entrepreneurial skills. As many people in this area work as freelancers, we’ll teach you everything you need to know for success, from how to set up to paying your taxes.

At this point, we’ll encourage you to gain some industry experience to boost your CV. Bucks New University and Creative Media Skills have a diverse network so you’re likely to be one of the first to hear about opportunities on offer.

What are the course entry requirements?

A typical offer will be a UCAS Tariff score of 80. A minimum of two full A-levels (or equivalent) is required. Every application is considered on an individual basis.

For further details of our international English entry requirements, please visit our international pages.

Applicants who do not meet the minimum requirements for the three-year undergraduate programme, or those who do not feel fully prepared for a degree course, can apply for a four-year programme including a Foundation Year; find out more.

Course Modules

Module Map

This module map provides a list of the modules that make up your course. You can find more information about how your course is structured on our Academic Advice section.

The modules available on this course are as follows:

Stage 1 Modules

  • Historical and Contextual Studies
  • Hair & Makeup Essentials
  • Pre-Production & Film Set Etiquette
  • Final Project - Year 1
  • Advanced Hair and Make-Up 1
  • FX Makeup & Prosthetics

Stage 2 Modules

  • Advanced Hair and Make-Up 2
  • Character Design & Making
  • Professional & Entrepreneurial Skills
  • Contextual Studies
  • Major Project and Contextual Report


How much does it cost

Full Time Home and EU, Academic Year 2020-2021: £11,100 per year

Most courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees.

Fees quoted are for the next intake and are subject to change. Fee costs for subsequent years may rise in line with inflation, course delivery costs or subject to government regulations.

For information on financial assistance to support your learning, visit our Undergraduate Fees and Funding section.

Questions about fees?

Contact our Enquiries Team:
0330 123 2023

How do I apply?

For application details please visit bucks.ac.uk/applying-to-bucks


What are my career prospects

After studying at Bucks, you’ll be set up for success and ready to work on major productions anywhere in the world.

You could use your expertise to work as a:

  • Makeup artist/makeup assistant
  • Hairdresser/Chief hairdresser
  • Hair Supervisor
  • Wig Supervisor
  • Prosthetic supervisor or technician
  • Prosthetic artist.

The Big Deal

At Bucks, we believe in putting our students first. That’s why our Students’ Union have developed our exclusive ‘Big Deal’ package. We’re the only university in the UK to offer free access to such a diverse and exciting range of activities – all to enrich the university experience.

We offer FREE events and entertainment, additional skills workshops, sports, recreational activities, societies and paid student rep schemes. All at one of the top 10 Students’ Unions in the UK.  It’s a big deal!

We are proud that our exciting and dynamic students’ union is ranked in the top three in the UK for representing student’s academic interests (NSS 2019). It’s a big deal!

Want to find out more? Visit our Students’ Union page or watch our video.