How to Become a Hair Stylist
There are many different career paths that you can pursue as a hair stylist, including working in a salon, freelance work, or even working in the film or theater industry.
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2 Years

The Definitive Guide to Becoming a Hair Stylist

Are you looking for a fulfilling career? Do you love to make people feel beautiful and confident? If so, then becoming a hair stylist might be the perfect fit. The beauty field is booming in today's society, with more people seeking out ways to look and feel their best.

Hair stylists are an integral part of this industry as they specialize in cutting, styling, coloring, perming and curling hair. Professionals can create many different styles - straightening or wavy locks; curly afros; sleek bobs or pixies on top of your head; braids or cornrows; updos for weddings or proms - the possibilities are endless. There is no limit to what you can do as a hair stylist.

Of course, becoming a hair stylist takes more than just having a passion for the industry. There are specific steps you must take to be successful. This guide will teach you everything you need to know about becoming a hair stylist, including:

  • The education and training required
  • The different types of licenses and certifications available
  • The skills required to succeed
  • The different types of careers available in the field
  • The average salary and job outlook for hair stylists

So, if you're ready to learn how to become a hair stylist, let's get started.

Becoming a Hair Stylist: Educational

One of the first steps in learning how to become a hair stylist is deciding on the type of education and training you want to pursue. Many different beauty schools across the country offer programs in hair styling. While not all programs are created equal, most will teach you the basics of haircutting, styling, and coloring. In addition, you will learn about the different types of hair products and tools used in the industry and how to use them safely.

Most states require hairstylists to be licensed to practice. Licensing requirements vary by state, but most need you to complete a cosmetology or hairstyling program from an accredited school, pass a written test and a practical exam, and pay a licensing fee. To keep your license current, you may also be required to complete continuing education courses occasionally.

Becoming a Hair Stylist: Training

In addition to formal education, many hair stylists receive on-the-job training from their employers. This type of training can be highly beneficial as it allows you to learn the ropes from experienced professionals. In addition, many salons offer apprenticeship programs that can last up to two years. You will shadow more experienced stylists and gradually build your skills during this time.

Becoming a Hair Stylist: Skills

There are specific skills that all hair stylists must possess to be successful in the field. These include:

The Ability to Communicate With Clients

It is vital that you can understand your clients' needs and wants to give them the best possible service. To become better at this, you should always ask questions and listen carefully to their answers. Contrary to popular belief, hair stylists are not just someone who cuts hair - they are therapists, confidants, and friends.

The Ability to Work Well Under Pressure

As a hair stylist, you will often have multiple clients scheduled back-to-back. This can be challenging at times, but it is vital that you can remain calm and organized no matter the situation. There will also be times when you have to work late or on weekends to meet a client's needs.

The Ability to Follow Directions

To be successful as a hair stylist, you must be able to follow the instructions of your boss or client. This includes knowing the specific steps involved in a particular style and understanding the desired outcome. In addition, you want to make sure that the customer is happy with the final product, not just how it looks when you're finished.

The Ability to Work With Different Hair Types

Not all hair is created equal. You will encounter all different hair types in your career, from straight and fine to curly and coarse. Therefore, it is essential that you can work with all kinds of hair and understand the best way to style it. This skill will improve with practice, so don't be discouraged if you don't get it right the first time. Just be willing to experiment and learn from your mistakes.

The Ability to be Creative

As a hair stylist, you will often be asked to create new styles for your clients. This means thinking outside the box and coming up with fresh ideas. You don't have to be an artist, but it is helpful to have some creative flair. In addition, you want to provide your clients with looks that they will love, making them want to come back to you again and again.

The Ability to Take Criticism

No one is perfect, and you will undoubtedly make mistakes during your career. It is crucial that you can take criticism gracefully and learn from your mistakes. This includes constructive criticisms from your boss or clients and negative feedback from online reviews.

The Ability to Stay Current With Trends

Like it or not, trends come and go in the hair industry. Therefore, you must be able to stay up-to-date with the latest trends and understand which ones are appropriate for different types of hair. You don't want your clients to look like they're stuck in the past, so it is crucial to be ahead of the curve.

Becoming a Hair Stylist: Career Paths

Now that you know how to become a hair stylist, it’s time to put your skills to the test. Once you have completed your education and training, there are many different career paths that you can pursue as a hair stylist. Some of the most common options include:

Working in a Salon

The most common way to become a hair stylist is to find work in a salon. Salons are found in just about every town and city, so this should not be too difficult. When applying for a salon job, bring your resume and portfolio with you. Salons are different from barbershops in that they offer a more comprehensive range of services, such as hair color and styling, perms, and relaxers.

Working as a Freelancer

If you are looking for more flexibility or want to be your boss, you may want to consider working as a freelancer. Freelancers are not employed by any salon and instead work on a contract basis with multiple clients. This can be a great option if you are good at marketing yourself and building a client base. Freelancers can also work directly with clients in their homes.

Working as a Hair Colorist

Hair colorists are in high demand and can often find work in salons, freelance, or even as part of a team in a hair show. Hair colorists are responsible for creating and applying all types of hair color, from highlights to all-over color.

Working as a Hair Stylist in a Film or Theater

If you are interested in working in the film or theater industry, becoming a hair stylist is a great way to get started. Many productions require a hair stylist to style the hair of the actors and actresses. This can be a great way to get your foot in the door of the entertainment industry.

Working in a Barbershop

Barbershops are a great place to start your career as a hair stylist. They typically offer lower pay and fewer opportunities for advancement, but they are a great way to gain experience. Many barber shops also provide training programs, which may be a good option if you want to become a hair stylist.

Working as a Hairdresser

Hairdressers are hair stylists who specialize in working with women's hair. They typically work in salons that offer services, including hair cutting, coloring, and styling. If you are interested in pursuing a career as a hairdresser, do your research and find a salon that offers the type of services you want to provide.

Hair Stylist Salary and Job Outlook

The average salary for a hair stylist is $28,000 per year. The job outlook for this profession is good, with an expected growth of 19% between 2020 and 2030. This growth is partly due to the increasing popularity of services such as hair color and styling. If you are looking for a stable career with good earning potential, becoming a hair stylist is great. Hair stylists are also in high demand, so finding a job should not be difficult.

Wrap Up

Becoming a hair stylist is a great way to start a stable and rewarding career. Becoming a hair stylist includes completing a cosmetology program, obtaining a license, and finding work in a salon. There are many different career paths that you can pursue as a hair stylist, including working in a salon, freelance work, or even working in the film or theater industry.

So, if you are looking for a stable career with good earning potential and opportunities, becoming a hair stylist is a great choice.