The demand for hair styling, coloring, and similar treatments has been growing over the years. This has positioned the beauty industry as one of the industries that keeps evolving. That’s because there’s no point in time where people will not try to look good. That’s why choosing a career as a cosmetologist has a lot of returns.
From hair care tips to complicated skincare routines, there are a whole lot of avenues to venture into. But before we get further, let us understand what cosmetology is. It’s the art and science of applying beauty treatments. This includes caring for people’s hair, nails, and skin. The branches of specialty that are provided by cosmetologists include:
- Manicure and pedicure
- Non-permanent hair removals like waxing
- Permanent hair removal like electrology and intense pulsed light (IPL)
One of the ways to open a great career where there’s a lot of demand is by completing your cosmetology course. Several institutions offer cosmetology courses. You just need a little research to find the best.
Considerations Before Becoming a Beautician
With the rise of social media and an increase in body consciousness, people have become immensely focused on beautifying themselves. Technology has also made skin enhancement procedures and hair care tips more feasible. So if you intend on becoming a beautician, we have some suggestions for you.
1. Education and Training
You need to have a high school diploma at least as your minimum educational qualification before joining a cosmetology program. A lot of people believe that there are no academic qualifications required to become a beautician. If you have had these thoughts as well, then you’re mistaken.
One must have a high school diploma and a degree in cosmetology. You must also do a written and practical state test to receive a permit for the profession.
Cosmetology programs include both classroom instructions and hands-on learning in school-based salons. The classes cover topics like skincare routine, makeup, and hair care tips such as how to care for wavy hair. If you’d like to operate your salon, a course in marketing and business management will come in handy.
These courses will enable you to get a certificate or an associate degree. All states have different requirements when it comes to obtaining a cosmetology license. Thus, you’ll have to complete a written and a practical exam.
The exams are conducted by various governing bodies that differ from state to state. In some instances, beautician licensing is the duty of licensing bureaus.
In other cases, states make it the responsibility of boards of cosmetology or state department of health. Excelling in the state board exam is not easy. That’s why you need thorough preparations if you’re to get into this profession.
Apart from mastering what you’re taught in school, be sure to take some online practice tests. You can take free practice tests provided by CPT Guru, which will help you to pass your exams. It will provide you with knowledge not only in the field of Cosmetology, but also in the areas of Esthetician, Barber, and Nail board exams.
2. Stay Updated in the Trends of the Industry
As a beautician, you’ll have to stay informed about the changes and growth within the industry. This is despite having completed your cosmetology certification and programs.
Keep in mind that there are always new products and techniques entering the market. Thus, having as much information as you can about the cosmetology field is crucial. It enables you to offer your clients a broad range of services to choose from.
It also enables you to anticipate the direction that some sections of the industry are headed. This is good if you intend to be a trendsetter in the business. Additionally, be sure to stay engaged in many areas of the industry. It will enable you to inspire regular clients and impress new ones.
3. Consider the Expectations and Expertise of the Profession
Apart from the education and training, a beautician’s capabilities are important. You’re required to have good communication skills and the ability to listen to a client’s needs.
You must also learn how to handle time and give every client a great deal of consideration. You’ll also be required to have stamina and endurance since you’ll spend a lot of time on your feet while attending to clients.
Good presentation and communication skills will help you to interact with clients well. Keep in mind that the client-cosmetologist relationship is vital in this field. That’s because you want to provide clients with a good atmosphere where they trust your recommendations and your services.
4. Knowledge of Beauty Products
Your knowledge of beauty products does not end with knowing their colors and texture. You may be planning to work with a large number of clients or an elite handful of clients. Whatever the case, a time will come when your clients will want you to recommend some products for their skincare routine.
Of course, you’re not expected to be knowledgeable about every product. But there are things you must ask yourself:
- How effective are the products you’re using?
- Does the brand you’re using have any scandals in their reputation?
- Are there harsh chemicals that could irritate the skin in the products you’re using?
So you must research and have information on every product you use. Remember that you owe it to your client base to ensure every product you use on them is safe.
5. Local Laws and Regulations
Local laws and regulations differ by state and the type of salon you intend to have. A salon that provides skin care services will require different licenses from the one that offers hair care services.
Thus, you must research to ensure compliance with state laws and regulations. If you intend to adjust your business plan due to the regulations, be sure to do so early. It will prevent you from stopping your operations later on due to fines.
Here are the common licenses, regulations, and permits for a salon business:
- Salon license
- A building permit
- Cosmetology licenses
- An identification number from the employer (EIN)
6. Years of Experience
Know that you’re not likely to make a lot of cash right away. Being a new business, you’ll have a hard time getting your name out and finding clients. Most of the time you’ll only have walk-in clients. Word of mouth and coupon specials are some of the strategies that will help you attract new clients.
With time, you’ll gain the job experience that will give you an established and loyal clientele -people who can book regular appointments in advance. When you get to that point, chances are that you’ll want to open another salon and hire stylists to work for you.
7. Choosing the Right Location for the Business
Location is one of the important expenses you would incur if you intend to have a salon. So note that there are various factors to consider when deciding where to build or rent the retail space.
The area must be well populated and accessible by public transport or by car. You also have to ensure that you’re far away from the competition that offers the same services as you.
Get a solid location with enough parking spaces. You’ll receive more clients visiting your salon if the place is convenient. This will translate into more revenue to pay off any loans you may have. You’ll also have some extra cash to set aside for business growth.
The beauty industry is versatile and there are opportunities for everyone with passion. But even if you know about the choices available, you may not know where to go after choosing the direction of your career.
Note that success looks different for everyone and so does the path to success. But regardless of your goals, the factors here will help you know how to go about becoming a beautician.