According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment in the field of cosmetology will grow about 20 percent during the period from 2008 to 2018. Cosmetologists provide a variety of beauty services, but as they advance in the field they tend to develop a specialty in one area.
The first step to entering the field of cosmetology involves completing the training that your state requires to become licensed. Vocational schools, beauty colleges and community colleges offer programs that will help you complete the requirements. If you enter the program full time, it will last about nine months. Then the state will require that you take a written and practical exam to prove that you have mastered the skills necessary to become licensed.
Once you start working you will be responsible for building and retaining your own clientele. To successfully do this, you will need excellent people skills. Savvy marketing techniques will help you to implement plans such as referral programs and client bonuses. The more in demand you become, the more likely clients will pay more for your services. Therefore, advancement in the field of cosmetology is directly linked to gaining experience and working with a large clientele.
Most cosmetologist find securing a entry-level position an easy task. But competition for positions at the most popular salons may be challenging. New cosmetologist may find starting out discouraging, since it takes time to build a clientele. Some end up entering another field of employment to earn a steady income. Additionally, when the economy takes a downturn, many people look for ways to lower their expenses, and clients may visit the salon less often.
Make sure you keep your license current once you receive it. Make yourself a more attractive candidate for employment by regularly participating in workshops and advance classes to improve your skills. Get practice under skilled cosmetologists. You may find it worthwhile to work as an apprentice for a well-known cosmetologist, learning the techniques that helped them to build a strong clientele. Once you have built a clientele, you can open your own salon.
Cosmetologists who specialize in a single area of the field may have an easier time finding work. Most cosmetologists specialize in styling hair. Some choose to concentrate in the area of nail care and build successful businesses providing manicures, pedicures and nail enhancements. According to a report by the Dominican University of California, “Nail care is the fastest growing sector in the beauty industry, generating more than $6 billion annually.” The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics expects esthetics (care of the skin) to see the biggest growth in the cosmetology sector, about 38 percent from 2008 to 2018. A cosmetologist may also advance her career by becoming a sales representative or demonstrator for a product manufacturer. A cosmetologist may also choose to advance her career by working as a makeup artist.