Cosmetology Careers: Career Advice From a Cosmetology School

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Cosmetology is a career field with much to offer. As a person about to embark on a new career in cosmetology, you’re sure to have some questions. Who better to get the answers from than 5 experienced and skilled professional cosmetology instructors?

Feed your curiosity and gain vital knowledge about the beauty industry by taking a look at their answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about cosmetologist careers in regards to: cosmetology career fields and cosmetology career success.

Cosmetology Career Fields:

Where/what would be your ultimate dream career as a working cosmetologist?

  • Being an educator!
  • Owning my own successful salon.
  • Becoming a Redken Artist.
  • Becoming a platform artist.
  • Managing a salon.
  • Teaching students and current cosmetologists the newest and hottest trends.
  • Working on a movie set with famous people!

What are the most in-demand fields or specializations of Cosmetology and why?

  • Most definitely a well educated accomplished colorist. Anyone can slap on color. A professional is a chemist who can predict the end result.
  • Every field. People love to be pampered and have services done to make them look and feel better about themselves. In each field we have to power of doing so.
  • A business person who is passionate and knows exactly what they are doing.
  • Someone knowledgeable, cutting edge and different from everyone else.

What are the most rewarding fields/specializations of cosmetology and why?

  • Business ownership, growing others, investing in the future of a growing staff. Knowing 1+1=2 in business and setting and meeting goals.
  • Color. With coloring you can help a person express themselves with bright bold color, or be natural with subtle tones; you can also make a person look younger.
  • When you have a client that comes in and is having a bad day or a rough time and you put a smile on their face because of the job you have done for them.
  • To finish any service and have it be exactly what you pictured in your mind!

Would you rather own a salon, manage a salon, or work in a salon – and why?

  • Own, manage and work in one. I do it every day. I love it. I won’t give up working behind the chair.
  • I would rather own my own salon because that is when you know you have made it in the industry.
  • Work in a Salon, I love to service my clients without all the responsibilities of owning the salon.
  • I am a leader. I love to be able to work with a rewarding team. Whether it be owning a salon with a talented crew, managing a group of well skilled stylists or just working in a salon.

Cosmetology Career Success:

What is the most challenging thing you’ve faced in your career as a cosmetologist?

  • When the recession hit! I lost 40% the first year. I am not speaking of guest count, but income due to guests stretching out their appointments. It has gotten better, but it will ebb and flow with the economy.
  • Discounting services. We all have friends and family that expect discounts and it is our job to let them know it isn’t possible. This is how we make our living.
  • When first starting out its hard to stay focused and market yourself.
  • Moving and starting over in another city.

How did you overcome that challenge?

  • By changing the way we do business. It was taught and encouraged to NEVER discount services. Now it is encouraged to market with discounts. Becoming an affordable high end salon and day spa has changed everything.
  • By explaining to loved ones that I love my job, I’m very passionate about it, but I also have a family to support just like everyone else and I need to get paid.
  • By having the drive to be successful.
  • Marketing, working in a restaurant part time to meet people and gain new clientele.

What do you think made you a successful cosmetologist?

  • My professionalism, commitment to excellence, addiction to education, servant’s heart, leadership skills, humility, confidence and my servants heart.
  • The attitude to accept criticism, striving to be the best, continuing education and always putting a smile on my clients’ faces.
  • Loving what I do.
  • Trying to keep up with new styles and trends. After school it’s all self taught.

What things factor into pay as a cosmetologist? (example: location, specialty, experience, education)

  • You want to make sure you are in a salon that invests in ongoing education. This makes the latest trends and advanced techniques available to clients.
  • Experience is valuable but not always positive.
  • Location is important. An “a” location is one where it is easily accessed, attached or by busy businesses, directly off a busy street.
  • Good signage.
  • Using your education in a professional manner is next.
  • Repeats, Referrals, Retail and Rebooks are the 4 R’s that earn money.
  • Communication with your clients, approach, friendliness, cleanliness, punctuality, and high knowledge and training.
  • Knowledge, continuing education, keeping up with what’s in and most importantly, marketing yourself!

How do tips factor into your salary?

  • I use them to pay down debt. By law, you claim tips. My paycheck pays life, bills etc. My tips are extra payments that are leading me to a debt free life.
  • As a cosmetologist tips are a huge factor in getting paid. They are probably 30% of our income. When you get a good tip you know you made your client happy.
  • I use my tips for petty cash. It’s a great add on to an already expected salary.

How do you get the most tips?

  • Going the extra mile, being neat, keeping the guest dry, clean and looking great. Educating clients on how to duplicate their looks at home.
  • Listen to your clients, communicate with them and try to achieve the desired look.
  • Give great customer service and be confident in what you do best.
  • Always being attentive to your client.

Now that you’ve heard from real professionals in the industry you can go into your new career with a little something extra that may just put you ahead of the curve. Depending on where you are in the process you may still be searching for the perfect cosmetology school to get you started. You will likely be able to find an excellent program at your local technical college. Check out one today!

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