Are you considering becoming a Cosmetologist?
If you enjoy beauty and helping others, Cosmetology might be a great career option. Cosmetology is the art and study of enhancing and beautifying hair, nails and skin. Cosmetology dates back before 4000 BCE and was first used by Egyptians who used organic and mineral materials to beautify eyes, skin and hair. Make-up was used by both men and women to enhance their beauty. Many Egyptian tombs contained makeup canisters and kits. Cleopatra used lipstick that got its hue from ground carmine beetles, while other women used clay mixed with water to color their lips. Chinese royalty in the Zhou dynasty used gelatin, beeswax, egg white, and gum arabic to paint their nails gold and silver.
A lot has changed over the centuries as well as beauty standards, but what hasn’t changed is that the art of beautifying the physical appearance can make a huge difference to one's self-confidence and self-image.
What are Cosmetology careers?
There are several categories within the field of cosmetology:
Hairstylists also known as hairdressers offer a wide range of hair services, such as shampooing, cutting, coloring, bleaching and styling. They often advise clients, both male and female, on how to care for their hair at home.
In addition, hairstylists advise clients about hair and scalp issues. Hairstylists also keep records of products and services provided to clients, such as hair color, shampoo, conditioner, and hair treatment used. Hairdressers use chemicals to change hair texture. Hairstylists use creativity to create unique hair styles for special events. Tools of the trade include hairbrushes, scissors, blow dryers, curling and flat irons.
Hairstylists are expected to stay on top of current hair trends and are required to do continuing education in order to keep their skills current.
Median Hourly Wage: The median hourly wage for hairdressers and hair stylists was $14.27 per hour or $29,680 per year in 2021.
Job Outlook: There is a projected 19% increase between 2020-2030.
How to Prepare for a Career as a Hairstylist / Hairdresser?
You are required to graduate from a state-approved education program and pass a state exam for licensure. Most states require you to be at least 16, have a high school diploma or GED, and complete a state-licensed cosmetology program. The steps to becoming a hairdresser are generally the following:
- Earn a high school diploma or GED.
- Enroll in a state-approved cosmetology school. To find out which schools are accredited in your state, you can visit the National Accrediting Commission for Career Arts & Sciences at: http://naccas.org/accredited-school-search
- Gain the necessary hands-on practice.
- Pass the licensing exam and get certified.
- Take continuing education classes and maintain licensure.
Desired Skills of a hairdresser: Creativity, Stamina, Patience, Listening Skills, Customer Service, Organization and Time Management.
***Often, because hairstylists work so closely with their clients, clients often vent their problems and issues to their hairstylist. They may talk to their hairstylist as if they were their counsellor. They form close personal relationships with their clients that can last years and decades.
Some of the Benefits of Being a Hairstylist:
- Make people feel better about themselves
- Help to Empower Others
- Make People Feel Confident and Beautiful
- Use Creativity to Create Hairstyles and Looks
- Develop Client Relationships
- Educate Others on How to Take Care of Their Hair/Scalp at Home
Hairdressers may work independently or in a salon, spa or hotel. They may also work on cruise ships, production sets for tv or film. Most hairdressers work in a salon or spa. They may work independently renting a booth and building up a clientele base or they may work for a salon and pay the owner commission.
Some of the Challenges of Being a Hairsylist / Hairdresser:
- Long Hours on Your Feet
- Repeated Exposure to Chemicals
- Difficult and Demanding Clients and Bosses
- Low salary
- Risks of being exposed to Covid-19, colds or contagious skin diseases.
Implementing hygienic practices will minimize risks greatly and will keep you and your clients safe and healthy. This entails sterilizing tools, combs, brushes after each use as well as sanitizing your chair and workstation. Many salons and spas have strict protocols to help protect staff and clients and to create a healthy and safe work environment.
If you enjoy the beauty industry and working with hands and feet, you may consider becoming a nail technician. Nail techs beautify nails by performing manicures and pedicures. Nail Techs shape and polish nails and often use creativity to embellish nails with different designs. They apply nail extensions and different services such gel and acrylic nails or fills. They trim down and condition cuticles and may offer specialized beauty treatments to hands and feet such as paraffin wax which softens and conditions skin and nails.
Median Wage: The mean national wage and salary for nail techs in the U.S. is $14.05 per hour or $29,210 in 2021.
Job Outlook: A nail technician has the opportunity to work in several different settings and meet all sorts of people. Plus, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), jobs for manicurists and pedicurists are on the rise and expected to grow 33% between 2020 and 2030 – much higher than the 7% average of other careers.
How to Become a Nail Technician?
In most states, you'll need to be at least 16 years old and possess a high school diploma or GED in order to become a nail tech. From there, you’ll need to complete a nail technician program or apprenticeship and pass an exam to obtain licensure. You can usually complete the program under a year, and sometimes in as little as a couple of months.
What Skills Do I Need to Become a Nail Tech?
- Good Interpersonal Skills. You will be working with a wide range of people from different backgrounds and varying personality types.
- Creativity. You will be designing different nail patterns for customers.
- Good manual dexterity. You will be using your hands consistently for long hours.
- Good Listening Skills. Listening to what clients want and need.
- Customer Service Skills
- Ability to Sit for Long Periods of Time
What are the Benefits of Being a Nail Tech?
- Develop Good Client Relationships
- Flexible Hours
- Satisfaction from Seeing Customers Happy
- Artistic Expression
What are the Challenges of Being a Nail Tech?
- Exposure to chemicals and fine nail dust Risk of fungal, viral and bacterial infections
- Difficult and Sometimes Unhygienic Clients
If you enjoy the beauty industry and beautifying skin, then becoming an aesthetician might be a good career choice for you. Aestheticians are skin care specialists who use a variety of services and products to help beautify and care for skin. They may perform a variety of services but focus predominantly on facial skin care. Depending on the school and selected program, aestheticians are trained to work in medical spas, salons, hospitals, healthcare facilities or may be self-employed and work from home or have their own office.
Some of the services that aestheticians provide are: chemical peels, facials, scrubs and hair removal. They meet with clients to evaluate skin and decide on the best treatment options. They help clients with skin imperfections such as acne and scarring and can help clients attain a more youthful, even and healthy glow. Some aestheticians are employed by and work with dermatologists and plastic surgeons and may perform pre-op and post-op services on clients. It can be an exciting and fulfilling career choice. If you enjoy making people feel good about themselves then this could be a good career option with a lot of opportunity for growth and advancement.
Median Wage: $37,300 per year or $17.93 per hour in 2021.
Job Outlook: Employment of skincare specialists is projected to grow 29 percent from 2020 to 2030, much faster than the average for all occupations.
How to Become an Aesthetician?
Skincare specialists must complete a state-approved cosmetology or aesthetician program and then pass a state exam for licensure, which all states except Connecticut require.
A barber cuts, styles and colors hair, beards and moustaches and is predominantly focused on men. A barber may also fit and style hair pieces and provide face, neck and scalp massages. A barber usually works in a specialized salon called a barbershop. Barbering has a long tradition in the U.S. and other countries. It has traditionally been a place to come together and socialize. Barbers may develop strong interpersonal relationships with their clients and a loyal customer base.
It is thought that barbering originated in ancient Egypt. Archaeologists have found artifacts and barbering tools that date back to 3500 BC! Archaeologists have discovered relics from the Bronze Age that point towards the use of sharpened flintstone and oyster shells for shaving. Also, the paintings and markings recovered from the remains of the early Egyptian civilization display clearly the profession of barbering as a regal profession that was honored.
It has also been discovered that hairstyles were a part of the social class system in early Egypt. Kings, clergy and Slaves all had unique hairstyles to differentiate between their classes and roles in the societies.
Likewise, there were different barbers for each class of society. Barbers doubled as religious priests and used to perform surgical and religious practices in addition to modern barbering services.
The art of barbering has long been held as a respected and revered profession and continues to be a culturally important practice and gathering place throughout many areas of the U.S. and abroad.
Median Wage: In 2021, the Median National Wage for Barbers was $17.16 per hour or $35,700 per year
Job Outlook: Overall employment of barbers, hairstylists, and cosmetologists is projected to grow 19 percent from 2020 to 2030, much faster than the average for all occupations.
How to Become a Barber?
Barbers must obtain a license in order to work. Qualifications for a license vary by state, but generally, a person must fulfill the following criteria:
- Reached a minimum age of 16
- Received a high school diploma or equivalent
- Graduated from a state-licensed barber or cosmetology school
After graduating from a state-approved training program, students take a state licensing exam that includes a written test and, in some cases, a practical test of styling skills or an oral exam.
In many states, cosmetology training may be credited toward a barbering license and vice versa, and a few states combine the two licenses. A fee usually is required to apply for a license, and continuing education units (CEUs) may be required with periodic license renewals.
Some states have reciprocity agreements that allow licensed barbers and cosmetologists to get a license in another state without needing additional formal training or state board testing, but such agreements are not common. Consequently, people who want to work in a particular state should review the laws of that state before entering a training program.
What kind of skills do you need to be a barber?
Creativity: Barbers, hair stylists, and cosmetologists must keep up with the latest trends and be ready to try new hairstyles for their clients.
Customer-service skills: Workers must be pleasant, friendly, and able to interact with customers in order to retain clients.
Listening skills: Barbers, hair stylists, and cosmetologists should be good listeners. They must listen carefully to what the client wants in order to make sure that the client is happy with the result. Physical stamina: Barbers, hair stylists, and cosmetologists must be able to stand on their feet for long periods.
Tidiness: Workers must keep a neat personal appearance and keep their work area clean and sanitary. This requirement is necessary for the health and safety of their clients and for making clients comfortable enough so that they will want to return.
Time-management skills: Barbers, hair stylists, and cosmetologists need to manage their time efficiently when scheduling appointments and providing services. For example, routine haircuts do not require the precise timing of some other services, such as applying neutralizer after a permanent wave. Clients who receive timely hair care are more likely to return.
What are some of the benefits of becoming a barber?
- Build great relationships and social connections.
- Flexible hours
- Fulfilling to help others look and feel great.
What are some challenges of becoming a barber?
- Standing on your feet for long hours
- Can take a toll on your body
- Being exposed to chemicals
- Risks of viral, bacterial or fungal infections.
- Itching and irritation from hair.
- Difficult clients
All in all, if you enjoy meeting and interacting with a wide range of people and enjoy helping people feel better about themselves then barbering may be a good career option for you.
Do you enjoy working with make-up and helping others to look and feel beautiful?
Makeup Artists use a variety of skills and tools to create and transform the way people look and feel. Makeup Artists use different techniques to enhance a person’s beauty, disguise blemishes or create special effects. Makeup Artists specialise in a particular area of makeup artistry, such as theatrical makeup for film, stage or television, fashion makeup for modelling shoots, special events makeup for weddings and other occasions, or working in a retail store, helping customers sample makeup. It can be an extremely fulfilling profession with lots of room to grow and branch out.
How to Become a Professional Make-Up Artist?
Although a formal education beyond high school isn’t required, a cosmetology certificate or degree can help teach you the skills and client management you need to succeed. You can also research and learn make-up artistry on your own. Research master make-up artists on social media and learn which techniques they use. Watch videos and tutorials on YouTube. Practice, Practice, Practice!! Find friends and family members willing to let you practice on. Experiment and refine your craft. Connect with other beauty professionals and find a mentor if possible. Become active on social media to market yourself and to connect with other professionals in the beauty industry.
Median Wage: The average salary for a makeup artist is $30.88 per hour in the United State as of July 2022. (Indeed.com)
Job Outlook: Demand for Makeup Artists, Theatrical and Performance is expected to go up, with an expected 2,420 new jobs filled by 2029. This represents an annual increase of 9.67 percent over the next few years.
What are some of the benefits of being a make-up artist?
- Make People Feel and Look Beautiful
- Always Meeting New People
- Live Doing Your Passion
- Creative Outlet
- Flexible Hours
- Discount on Make-Up and Tools of the Trade
- Career Versatility
What are some of the challenges of being a make-up artist?
- Difficult Clients
- Deadlines and Time Management
- Building a Reputation and Clientele Can Take Time
- Unstable Income
- Being at Risk for Bacterial, Fungal or Viral Infections
- Good Listening Skills
- Good Skill Set and Talent
- Good Interpersonal Skills
- Time Management
- Ability to Work Under Pressure
- Desire to Learn New Skills and Techniques