June 3, 2021

Salon Success Academy Guide to Cosmetology

Student blow-drying hair

Do you want to pursue a future in an exciting and fulfilling industry? If you’ve always had an interest in hair and makeup, a career in cosmetology might be perfect for you! Cosmetology can be the perfect way to bring beauty into other’s lives, practice creativity, and keep you on your toes as the industry evolves.

If you’re wondering what the next step is, don’t worry! We’ve created this guide to help you on your path. We understand that getting started can be a process, but with this guide you can learn more about cosmetology and see if it’s right for you! In this guide we’ll cover:

  • What is Cosmetology?
  • What do Cosmetologists Do?
  • How to Become a Cosmetologist
  • How to Choose the Right Beauty School
  • What Financial Aid Options are Available?
  • Where Can a Cosmetologist Work?
  • What are the Benefits of Working in Cosmetology?

At Salon Success Academy, our instructors and admissions representatives have been training the future of the beauty industry for years. We’re committed to providing a quality education and the hands-on training you will need to be successful both in school and after graduation. If you’re ready to get started, don’t hesitate to contact us! We would be more than happy to answer any questions you may have.

What is Cosmetology?

woman applying makeup to another woman's face

Cosmetology includes the study of hair, skin, and nails. A cosmetologist is someone who has gone to school to study these techniques, which requires many of hours of schooling. They have then studied and sat for a state exam to become a licensed cosmetologist.

Aside from salon skills, a successful cosmetologist must learn many other important skills, such as:

Cosmetology can be a very rewarding career for many, and can fit into your busy schedule! At Salon Success Academy, we offer flexible schedules to choose from. There’s day and evening options as well as full and part-time schedules. Contact us today to see which scheduling option might work best for you!

What Do Cosmetologists Do?

If you’re curious about what cosmetologists do in their daily work, you can learn more in our cosmetology program! Our 1,200 clock hour program combines in-depth classroom instruction, hands-on training, guidance from our instructors and extensive preparation for the state licensing exam. Our program includes:


Hair treatments are what can make up a bulk of a cosmetologist’s work! These treatments can include but are not limited to:

  • Hair cutting
  • Hair styling
  • Hair coloring
  • Bleaching
  • Perms
  • Texturizing
  • & more

Facial Treatments

A cosmetologist can also expect to perform many types of facial treatments in their line of work. If you’d like to work in a full-service spa or salon, learning facial treatments can help you offer more options to your clients! These facial treatments may include:

  • Facials
  • Eyebrow waxing
  • Facial waxing
  • Makeup application
  • & more


Nails are also included in our cosmetology program. This part of our curriculum includes:

  • Manicuring
  • Pedicuring
  • Nail care
  • Artificial nails
  • & more

Find out more about our cosmetology program and see if Salon Success Academy is the right fit for you!

How to Become a Cosmetologist

three women holding hair brushes and scissors

There’s a few steps to become a licensed cosmetologist! The first one is finding a cosmetology program. At Salon Success Academy, we require our students to:

  • Be at least 17 years old
  • Show U.S. completion of 12th grade (diploma or transcripts), GED, or pass results for the HiSET or TASC exam

Once you find the right program, you may be required to tour the school, interview, and complete an application. Once you’ve been accepted into the school, you will need to pass your written and practical exams given within your program. Upon completion of your program, you will sit for your state’s cosmetology exam. As soon as you pass, you may apply for state licensure and begin your future as a licensed cosmetologist!

How to Choose the Right School

Choosing the perfect school for you can help you be successful as a beauty professional. The right school will not only prepare you for your state licensing exam, but for after graduation in your future career. Consider the following when it comes to schools:

Research the Programs

Take a look at the programs offered by each school. What is the program length? Are there options for scheduling options that will fit into your busy life? Does the program cover skills you’d like to learn? Not all programs are created the same, and finding the right one is a vital step in your beauty school journey.

Take a Tour

A tour can allow you to get a better feel for a school’s culture and what campus life is like. On your tour, you can also have the opportunity to meet instructors and students and get their perspective. This can help you decide if the school is right for you!

Talk to an Admissions Representative

An admissions representative can help answer any questions you might still have. Be sure to bring a list so you can make sure you cover everything from scheduling to financial aid.*

What Financial Aid Options are Available?

Did you know that there are financial aid options for beauty school students? When it comes to your education, you may qualify for financial aid assistance! Financial aid options include:

Federal Financial Aid

We recommend that all students start by filling out a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form. FAFSA can help you determine if you qualify for federal assistance, such as loans, pell grants, and more.


Scholarships are a great way to help pay for school, as they often do not need to be paid back. We encourage all our students to apply for as many scholarships as they can. Our financial aid team can help you determine what scholarships are available and what you might qualify for. We also suggest all students look at scholarships through Beauty Changes Lives to see what’s available!

Where Can a Cosmetologist Work?

As a licensed cosmetologist, you can have so many opportunities to find different jobs within the industry. Because beauty is such a flexible career choice, new careers are being created almost every day. In the last few years we’ve watched the rise of careers such as beauty influencers and marketers, which used to be far and few between. You could also have the opportunity to work as:

  • Salon stylist or owner
  • Spa stylist
  • Movie/TV makeup artist
  • Celebrity stylist
  • Beauty advisor
  • Beauty school instructor
  • & More!

Your future in beauty is up to you, and you have the ability to pursue the career of your dreams. Many students start off in a salon, which can be a great field to practice your skills, make valuable connections, and network within your community. From there, the beauty industry is open to you! We look forward to seeing all the amazing places our students will end up.

What Are the Benefits of Working in Cosmetology?

woman applying makeup

If you’re considering a future in cosmetology, you’ll be excited to know that there are so many benefits! A big benefit of working in the beauty industry is socializing. As a cosmetologist, you’ll be working in a very social environment, which will allow you to meet new people and make many new friends.

Another benefit of working in cosmetology is the opportunity to express your creativity. As you learn more advanced skills and techniques, there will be chances for you to flex your creative muscles. As new industry standards are being developed, you will continually be able to learn more and grow your skills.

There are many other benefits when it comes to working in the beauty industry, which you can discover in your time in school. You’ll be able to work closely with beauty professionals and local salon owners to discover every amazing aspect of cosmetology.

Get Started at Salon Success Academy

Your future in the beauty industry could start sooner than you think! If you’re ready to jump into cosmetology, contact us. Our admissions team is more than happy to answer any questions you might have and see if Salon Success Academy could be the perfect fit for you.

*Financial aid is available to those who qualify.

Salon Success Academy

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