September 20, 2021

What is Cosmetology?

Woman with red hair and nails, eyes cast down

If you’re into beauty, you’ve likely heard the term cosmetology used to describe a lot of different jobs, like hair cutting and styling or makeup application. 

While hair and makeup are a big part of what cosmetologists do, there are many more skills that licensed cosmetologists learn and can practice.  

Female stylist cutting woman's hair

During their time in cosmetology school, cosmetology students complete numerous hours of specialized training. In Kansas and Missouri, for example, you have to complete 1500 hours of education and pass the state board exam to become a licensed cosmetologist.

So, what is cosmetology? And what are all the different aspects that fall under the cosmetology umbrella? Let’s find out!

History of Cosmetology

Cosmetology is the study and application of beauty treatments. Modern cosmetology really began in the 1900s when big beauty brands like Max Factor and Maybelline were founded. The first formal education courses for the study of cosmetology started in the 1930s. By the 1950s and 60s, cosmetologists were started to learn special hair treatments, like coloring, perms, and heated styling techniques.

The cosmetology industry boomed as technology make it easier for trends to sweep the country. People wanted to have their hair and makeup to make them look like their favorite movie stars. Further, cosmetology treatments became more affordable for the lower and middle class.

In 2020, nearly 623,000 people in the US were employed as cosmetologists. This industry is also expected to grow by 19% over the next decade!

Cosmetologists are responsible for starting and pushing new trends in the beauty industry. Cosmetology has been present around the world for centuries and will undoubtedly continue to play an important role in fashion and culture.

What Do Cosmetologists Do?

Cosmetology has a deep history and is a defining feature of culture, but what exactly do cosmetologists do? 

A cosmetologist can learn the full range of beauty services during their time in cosmetology school, including:

  • Haircutting and design
  • Barbering
  • Texturing
  • Makeup artistry
  • Skincare services
  • Nail services

Cosmetologists are the professionals when it comes to beautification. They are also responsible for the safety and comfort of their clients. So, much of their training also focuses on the science behind these treatments, as well as sanitation methods. 

This means that cosmetologists are also trained in basic chemistry and biology to understand how the products they use work. This ensures that they use chemicals for hair dying, styling, and coloring as well as skincare products correctly. 

makeup artist doing makeup

Where Do Cosmetologists Work?

You can find cosmetologists working in a variety of settings. The majority of cosmetologists work in hair salons or spas offering beauty services. Cosmetologists can be hired directly by salon owners, or they may rent out a booth in the building. 

Some cosmetologists prefer to operate as freelancers or work with staffing agencies to be hired for specific jobs. They may be available for hire for weddings, proms, photoshoots, or even TV and movie productions. 

They can also work in other capacities at cosmetic product companies, product sales, and salon corporate management. The wide variety of career paths and job possibilities is one of the great features of cosmetology

When you attend a beauty school, you will learn about many different things but you can choose something specific to focus on when you begin your career.

But if you’d like to pave your own way and have an entrepreneurial spirit, you could start your own business! Many salon owners are cosmetology school graduates. 

How to Become a Cosmetologist

Another great aspect of choosing cosmetology as a career is the relatively short amount of time it will take you to complete your education. Compared to a traditional four-year college, you could be finished very quickly! Full-time students can complete the 1,500-hour cosmetology program offered by Crave Beauty Academy in about a year.

Not only is it quicker to complete your education to become a cosmetologist, but it can be a much more hands-on experience. First, you will learn all of the necessary skills in the classroom, as well as with Pivot Point – our unique distance learning technology. 

Once they have mastered these skills, our students have the opportunity to get real hands-on experience. They spend some of the 1500 hours getting practical experience in a student salon cutting and styling hair for clients. This experience can be very valuable and help you when you go from school to work!

woman getting hair cut in salon

Our teachers also ensure that every student can gain valuable business and marketing skills through our Nuts and Bolts Training. This is incredibly beneficial if you hope to one day open a salon. But you’ll also learn how to build a resume and portfolio to help you land that first job after you get your license!

Do You Want to Become a Cosmetologist?

If a career in cosmetology sounds ideal to you, the first step is to enroll in beauty school. At Crave Beauty Academy, we know how important it is to learn practical skills that will help you get ahead in any career you choose.

So, we invite you to contact us and learn more about the possibilities of a career in the beauty industry. You can also schedule a tour of our Wichita, KS, and Ballwin, MO campuses to see what it’s like. Start your journey with Crave Beauty Academy today!


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