Cosmetology Career Field

cosmetologistCareer Overview

Cosmetologists provide their clients with hair care services to improve their personal appearance and self-esteem. Cosmetologists can also be called hairstylists or hairdressers. The services they provide can include shampooing, cutting, coloring, and providing hair styling services. They can also provide clients with home hair care advice. Cosmetologists can also provide manicures, pedicures, scalp treatments, and facial treatments. They can also advise their clients on make-up and wig and hair piece styling.

Education Requirements

Cosmetology Certificate/Diploma ( 9 months)
Associate’s Degree in Cosmetology ( 2 Years)

Cosmetologists and barbers are required by law to have a state license. To obtain this license, they must graduate from an accredited barbering or cosmetology program. These programs are usually available through private beauty school or state funded trade school or trade schools. They are generally about 9 months in length. Some cosmetologists also continue on to obtain an associate’s degree in the cosmetology field.

Licensing Requirements

Cosmetologists are required by law to have a state license. The requirements for this license vary by state, but they generally include being at least 16 years of age, having a high school diploma or an  equivalent, and having graduated from a state licensed barbering or cosmetology program. These programs usually last about 9 months. Students must also pass an examination to obtain the license. The exam includes both a written and sometimes a practical test. There is usually a fee required to obtain the license and periodic renewal requirements.


Makeup Artistry
Student Instructor
Hair Cutting
Hair Styling

School Recommendations

Marinello School of Beauty
Steiner Institute of Esthetics
Pinnacle Career Institute
Broadview University
Eagle Gate College

Employment Trends

Jobs Available in 2008: 630,700
Projected job openings through 2018: 757,700
Average Hourly Salaries for cosmetologists in 2008: $11.13

Related Jobs

Fitness workers
Makeup artists, theatrical and performance
Massage therapists

Article Reference: Bureau of Labor Statistics






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