Cosmetologists provide hair styling and beauty services, but they must attend cosmetology school first. Most cosmetology schools require that students be at least sixteen years old before they can apply.
A complete course in Cosmetology consists of between 1,200 and 2,100 hours of both theory and hands-on instruction. It normally takes about ten to twelve months for a student to complete the course. Tuition can range anywhere from $2,500 to $8,000 depending on the cosmetology school. Cosmetology schools offer financial aid for those students that need financial assistance with the cost of tuition. Students attending vocational-technical schools may be able to learn cosmetology as a part of their high school coursework.
Cosmetology schools teach students how hair should be cut to achieve the latest styles. Students will learn to properly shampoo and condition hair before cutting or styling it. Students must also be able to help clients choose a hairstyle based on their facial features. Once the client’s hair has been shampooed and cut, clients may ask that the cosmetologist color, curl or straighten their hair.
Students at cosmetology schools learn to use all types of tools including scissors, razors, clippers, rollers, clips, hot combs, and curling irons. But, cosmetology schools don’t just teach students knowledge about hair. Many cosmetologists also offer other services such as facials, scalp treatments, waxing, and manicures.
Once you complete your coursework in Cosmetology, you will be required to take the State Board exam before you can legally practice cosmetology. The exam consists of a written exam as well as your being asked to perform certain skills on a client. A license is good for 2-4 years. Once that time is up, you will be required to pay a renewal fee. Some states require continuing education of their cosmetologist, so once you have passed your courses from a cosmetology school, you may want to attend a local community college to take additional classes and earn an associate’s degree.