Many people think that cosmetology is just about learning how to cut and style hair, but being a beauty professional means so much more than that. From hair to makeup, nails and skin care, cosmetology is an industry marked by an entrepreneurial spirit, creativity, diversity and more.
Keep reading to learn 15 fun and interesting cosmetology facts that may surprise you!
Table of Contents
- Cosmetologists can earn a full-time salary on a part-time schedule
- Cosmetologists are artists
- Cosmetologists can do more than just cut and style hair
- Cosmetology connects you with inspiring people
- Cosmetologists make a real impact
- You can be your own boss in cosmetology
- Cosmetologists never stop learning
- Cosmetologists can work outside the typical beauty world
- Some cosmetologists develop their own product lines
- Cosmetologists can be educators
- Cosmetology has been around for thousands of years
- Cosmetology can travel with you
- Cosmetology is a diverse, growing industry
- Cosmetologists are some of the happiest workers out there
- You can become a cosmetologist in as little as a year
1. Cosmetologists can earn a full-time salary on a part-time schedule
It’s true! If you’ve ever wondered about how cosmetology pays, a recent study found that salon professionals have an average salary of $54,307 — and that’s working an average of 27.8 hours per week. This cosmetology salary also includes tips. Adjusted to a full-time, 40-hour workweek, this number would equal an average annual salary of $79,807.
The same study also found that 96% of salons offer employee benefits, and 99% offer flexible scheduling. So, if your dream is to work a career where you can earn a full-time salary on a part-time schedule, cosmetology could be the path for you!
2. Cosmetologists are artists
Cosmetology is about so much more than just learning hair cutting and makeup techniques. It’s also about having an eye for beauty and artistry.
Every client brings a unique canvas to your chair, and it’s your job to see what styles and techniques would work best for them. Is your client’s hair not properly suited for dramatic layers? Maybe some texturizing in the right places would be better instead. As a cosmetologist, you are so much more than a hair stylist. You are also an artist.
3. Cosmetologists can do more than just cut and style hair
Speaking of hair styling, many people think that’s all cosmetologists do — but that’s not the case! Cosmetologists are trained in hair, makeup, skin care and nails. That means cosmetologists are able to offer their clients lots of different services. Plus, if you ever decide to pursue nails rather than hair, you’ll have the training and licensure to do so.
Cosmetologists can also work in more settings than just the salon or spa. Some cosmetologists do editorial work, where they can assist in hair or makeup for things like music videos or magazine photo shoots. The sky really is the limit!
4. Cosmetology connects you with inspiring people
Another thing new cosmetologists may be surprised by is all the incredible people they meet. Working in the service industry can connect you with people you wouldn’t ordinarily get to know — like a world traveler taking a pit stop in your local area, a social media influencer or even just someone from the other side of town.
Meeting these kinds of people can be an extraordinary experience because of all the new perspectives and interesting stories they can share with you. You never know who’s going to inspire you next.
Plus, clients aren’t the only inspiring people you’ll meet. Many cosmetologists find friendship and community in fellow stylists, lash artists, local photographers and other creative partners.
5. Cosmetologists make a real impact
Cosmetology is about so much more than helping people feel beautiful — it’s about helping people feel confident and seen. As a cosmetologist, you have the opportunity to make a real impact in others’ lives.
You can help your clients believe more in themselves and encourage them to work toward achieving their dreams. You can be a confidante in their darkest hours and a cheerleader when they need it most.
Cosmetologists can also make a difference by learning the signs of domestic abuse and human trafficking. With the Milady RISE certification, stylists can become allies and learn how to safely help clients in crisis.
Plus, RISE-certified students also have the opportunity to receive $500 toward their cosmetology education through the Milady RISE scholarship program!
6. You can be your own boss in cosmetology
If you dream of becoming an entrepreneur and working for yourself, cosmetology could be an amazing opportunity for you. About one-third of all cosmetologists are self-employed, meaning they are their own bosses. This means you could have the power to:
- Make your own hours.
- Determine what services you will offer.
- Choose what clients you will work with.
- Decide which products you will use and sell.
- Pick your own prices.
Independent stylists and cosmetologists often do booth rent or rent a private salon suite. This means they pay a weekly or monthly fee to gain access to that chair/room but still remain in control of their own business.
7. Cosmetologists never stop learning
Graduating cosmetology school won’t be the end of your learning in this industry. Continuing education is extremely important in the cosmetology industry. Sometimes this can be in the form of additional classes you must take to renew your license. More often, you’ll take a class of your choosing to advance your skills. These classes can range from learning about new extensions, hair coloring or makeup techniques.
Cosmetologists often need to continue learning new skills to keep up with changing trends. This means you’re not likely to get bored doing the same thing every day. It’s all about what’s next!
8. Cosmetologists can work outside the typical beauty world
Have a passion for helping others feel confident, but not sure you want to work in the salon? You may be surprised to hear that cosmetologists don’t have to work in the standard beauty world. Many cosmetologists find their passion in helping others at places like:
- Funeral homes
- Nursing homes
9. Some cosmetologists develop their own product lines
Cosmetology is an amazing industry for those who want to become entrepreneurs. Whether they want to launch a line of hair products, skin care lotions or even makeup, many cosmetologists create their own line of beauty products. So, if you find yourself wishing there was something different on the market, make it happen yourself!
10. Cosmetologists can be educators
Did you know that cosmetologists are constantly working as educators? As a cosmetologist, you will likely find yourself educating clients daily about what styles, colors or products would be best for them.
Plus, if you love educating, you can make it the center of your career by becoming a brand ambassador or a school instructor. Many cosmetology brands, like Redken, hire cosmetologists to represent their brand and teach classes using their products. Or, you can get an instructor’s license and teach the future generation of beauty professionals!
11. Cosmetology has been around for thousands of years
The history of cosmetology begins in ancient Egypt, around 10,000 BCE. Both men and women would use natural pigments to dye their hair, rouge their lips and color their cheeks. They would also stain their nails with henna and use kohl to line their eyes.
It’s safe to say that cosmetology is a time-honored tradition — one that will likely be around for thousands of years to come!
12. Cosmetology can travel with you
Let’s say you get licensed in the state of Nevada, but after a few years you’d like to move to New York. While you may be thinking your Nevada cosmetology license won’t do you any good in New York, you’d be wrong.
New York has reciprocity with Nevada, which means as long as your Nevada cosmetology license is current, you can apply to have a New York license without any additional schooling or tests.
Many states have reciprocity with one another, so cosmetology really is a career that can travel with you.
Plus, depending on state laws, some cosmetologists can work as traveling stylists to meet their clients in their home cities. Some stylists can also work on cruise ships. This means you might be able to get paid to see the world!
13. Cosmetology is a diverse, growing industry
If you want to work in a diverse, growing industry, cosmetology could be the perfect industry for you. According to the latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, cosmetology careers are growing at a rate of 11%, which is much faster than average.
Not only is cosmetology a growing industry, but it’s also one full of diversity. Compared to the national average, the cosmetology industry employs:
- Almost twice as many women
- About 5% more minorities and people of color
There really is a place for everyone in the beauty industry!
14. Cosmetologists are some of the happiest workers out there
Did you know that cosmetologists are some of the happiest workers in the world? In fact, one survey looking for the happiest workers found that hairdressers topped their poll. Psychologist Barry Schwartz even rated hairdressing as a top job for worker satisfaction in his Ted talk, so it’s no wonder about 70% of hairstylists report being happy with their jobs.
15. You can become a cosmetologist in as little as a year
Maybe the most surprising thing about cosmetology is how quickly you can make your dreams a reality. Depending on your location and school, you can go to school full-time and graduate in as little as a year.
So if you’re wondering whether cosmetology school is right for you, know that one of the best parts of this industry is that it’s never too late to pursue a career in beauty!
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