A tale of continuous educationBlog ▸ Beauty Career, Beauty Student Advice | December 29, 2016
I hear a lot of people tell me that they are so happy they are not in school anymore. They don’t have to get up early for class, have late night study dates for a test, and they don’t have to worry ever again about setting foot inside of their school.
I won’t lie; this confuses me, because as a cosmetologist, I always think to myself “Does our learning ever really stop- even if we are no longer in school?”
The answer for a cosmetologist is simple… No.
Being a licensed cosmetologist is one of the most rewarding careers. I get paid to be creative, have fun, and make people look and feel beautiful. Who can argue with that? I have the power to change the lives of my customers; however, if I’m not careful, I also have the power to turn this wonderful career that I love so deeply into something that might make me dread going to work.
I have had the pleasure of working with many different cosmetologists in my time. Some have blown me away by their ability, while some have made me question why they came into this field in the first place. There is always that stigma of “good” and “bad” hairstylists out there, but what makes someone good, versus someone bad? To me, that answer is simple. Education. Once you are working you can never surrender to the thought that your education is over. The day you think that you no longer need to learn anything new is the day you become a “bad stylist.”
I have seen first-hand what happens to a cosmetologist who refuses to further educate themselves. What does that look like? Well, let me paint you that picture. It usually starts with a customer coming into the salon looking for the new color technique” or the latest “haircut fashion”. They sit in their stylist’s chair, excited, showing pictures and describing in detail the look they are going for. Then it happens. That stylist has a faint look of fear in their eyes and they begin to worry because even though they are amazing at what they can do, deep down they know that they have no idea how to create the look the Guest wants. They ask themselves questions like: “how do I place those foils?” “What type of partings should I take for this cut?” “Does this need to be texturized?”… followed by “I’m not sure I can do this.”
Moments like these happen when a stylist hasn’t been to any cutting classes or stopped by a local hair show to get the details on how to prefect this year’s hottest look, or worst yet, the REFUSE to learn. We all know that trends come and go, but if I don’t educate myself on how to achieve these looks on my customers, I will eventually begin to fade into the background, and I will be forced to watch the stylists who take the time to learn soar higher into their career.As a stylist, I make sure to keep myself up to date with what’s “hot”. It was not an option for me. I have no desire to watch my customers leave me for another stylist who knows how to rock the cut they are after. And, I don’t want to be the stylist that is sitting around wondering why I can’t build my business when all I know how to do is the same coloring technique I learned sixteen years ago.
Our customers come to us with expectations. They trust in our abilities, not just for cutting, texturizing and coloring, but they look to us to give them recommendations. They want to know that we take an active approach in keeping our skills up to date.
I had a very lovely woman as a longtime customer of mine for many years. She always liked her hair cut the same way, and she never strayed from her color. Every six weeks for her visit she would always ask about ‘the styles people were wearing these days’ or ‘what is the new color trend.” One day I asked her about it. I asked why she always wanted to know what the trend was and why she never wanted to try it. Her response was priceless to me. “I don’t want those styles, I am a creature of habit and I like what I have, but I LOVE that I have a stylist who knows what’s going on, and if I ever decide to change my look up, I know I can count on you to be the one to do it.”
So next time your local beauty supply is having a class, or you get that flyer in the mail about an upcoming beauty show, think twice before you casually forget about it. You may not learn the latest and greatest, but as long as you learn one thing- a new technique, a new way to mix color or even how the latest hair gadget works, your customers will be great full when they come to you and you can give them exactly what they are looking for.
If you are interested in learning more about a future in cosmetology, please fill out the online form on this page or call us at 1 (800) 964-1328.
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