Six months after achieving her childhood dream of opening a dance studio in rural Wisconsin, the coronavirus quarantine orders forced Bekki DelVecchio to shut down.
"I was devastated," the mother of seven said. "I cried for weeks on end, just missing my students and missing the place and the haven I'd created."
DelVecchio, her husband, and five of her children moved near Provo, Utah, to be close to family. With their financial and moral support, she enrolled in cosmetology school to become a hairstylist. She graduates in July.
DelVecchio will be re-entering the workforce at an opportune moment as cosmetology emerges from a bleak year of lockdowns and diminished business. The personal care industry has experienced a decline of 2% overall, but this bounceback, driven by state reopenings and new safety measures, could lead to employment increasing at a rate of 10% through 2024. Workers may nonetheless face competition for jobs at the higher paying salons, of which there are relatively few.
The cosmetology industry involves more than customer service and good hand-eye coordination. You must use communication and organizational skills to coordinate, supervise, manage, or train others to accomplish goals. If you possess these key soft skills and can adapt to the unique daily challenges of each client (such as different needs, hair types, face types, nail types, etc.), then there are many occupations in this industry that could be right for you.
4 cosmetology jobs women can get now
- Hairstylist. These beauty professionals provide haircutting, hairstyling, and a range of other services along with performing routine administrative and clinical duties to manage their clients. Income and schedule can be affected by factors such as location and whether you are renting a booth in a salon, typically keep all their proceeds after deducting the fees for their booth rental, working for yourself in a salon space, or performing mobile services either at your home or your client's.
- Esthetician. Focusing on proper care of the skin requires training in the field, with specified programs taking at least two years to complete, along with a detailed certification process and official medical training required for some practices. The requirements for this job are to provide skincare solutions like facial treatments, hair removal procedures, and makeup services. You should also know how to communicate well to explain procedures well and calm down anxious clients.
- Cosmetologist. This job requires keeping up with the latest trends to offer various services ranging from haircuts, makeup, skin and hair treatments, and even manicures and pedicures. They must have extensive knowledge and experience on the subject providing options that encompass the full body and making suggestions according to a client's hair condition or facial structure. Prioritizing customer satisfaction is also key because of the wealth of services you'd be providing on an individual basis.
- Makeup artist. This role works best with people who are very adaptable as they have to use and be experienced with a variety of products to achieve a client's desired look. The job itself is also very fluid as you could find employment in the retail sector, with studios, models, and even for specific brands. Studying how to achieve different popular looks and networking effectively are key as this job relies heavily on client satisfaction and a positive social media presence.
How to write a cosmetology resume
Now you're ready to write your resume. There are three different resume formats you'll want to consider:
Functional resume format: Best when you're new to the industry or have significant gaps in employment
When you are just starting out in a new industry or have a gap in your experience, the functional resume is the best option. Be sure to put forward your excellent interpersonal skills and highlight experience in current beauty trends. You should also keep up with the latest cosmetic methods and applications because providing your client with the latest treatments is a must.
Here's an example of what a functional cosmetology resume might look like:
Combination resume format: Perfect when you want to put equal emphasis on your skills and work experience
The combination resume is a great fit for candidates looking to draw attention to both relevant skills and work experience. It's vital, especially now, for those in the cosmetology field to cite that they are following the latest hygienic procedures and ensuring the sterilization of all the tools and equipment.
Here's an example of what a combination resume might look like:
Chronological resume format: Great when you can show solid career progression and clear achievements
Chronological resumes are the best way to show career achievement and progression. Experienced cosmetologists should highlight their efficient time management skills, team management, customer service, and dexterity.
Here's an example of what a chronological resume might look like:
How to explain career gaps on a cosmetology resume
Career gaps in the cosmetology and personal services industry are easy to explain because the field changed dramatically over the last year, closing thousands of stores and pushing even the most successful salons to adapt quickly to changing health procedures.
How you filled the gaps in your resume is dependent on the type of salon or beauty sector you worked in as companies like Avalon and Aveda switched their stylists over to remote teaching and direct product sales to keep employees afloat. However, it doesn't necessarily have to be freelance or gig work that filled your time, many things can contribute to your candidacy, including:
- If you've helped clients safely handle their own beauty needs from home you can highlight those experiences.
- Keeping an active creative portfolio and social media presence has been a great way for beauty professionals to stay up on trends.
- Taking a refresher course offered by Empire Beauty School, or another reputable institution, is also a relevant resume asset.
Finding a cosmetology job with a flexible schedule
Many cosmetology, esthetics, and barber jobs offer fairly flexible scheduling, but the environment and pay vary based on hours worked, the ability to expand client growth, and whether you are renting a booth or studio space. Since having an online presence is more important than ever, proper networking is the best way to find jobs in this industry. You should also try industry-exclusive job boards like Avalon.edu and The College of Hair Design.
Effectively using new technology like social media and online scheduling systems is both supremely important for building client relationships and maintaining a schedule that works for you. Online booking is rapidly growing in popularity because it eliminates scheduling wait times and allows clients to schedule at their convenience. Social media is a constant in our lives and offers great advertising opportunities. Professionals must learn how to promote their business appropriately and effectively.
You have to find a job that works for you and your schedule. Building a resume that's tailored for jobs currently available is a major step in the right direction. While there are many factors to consider in this industry like specific training and health requirements, if you love helping people feel more confident and healthy, then this is the field for you.