How to get into beauty therapy

20th June 2020

A career in beauty therapy is the perfect choice for anyone with an interest in hair and makeup artistry. This industry is growing at an exponential rate, and its job pathways are ever-changing and evolving. The rise of social and global media has resulted in more exposure within beauty, and the industry is representative of increasingly diverse skills and interests. There is now a place for all aesthetics, and today a career in this area can range from a nail technician running their own Youtube channel, to a special effects makeup artist on an international movie set.

Why study beauty therapy?

Beauty therapists (or beauticians, as they’re sometimes called) often work one-on-one with clients, fostering personal relationships with the people they work with. They must communicate effectively with their clients to ensure that their needs are met, and to make them feel safe and listened to. In this sense, beauty therapy can be a wonderful vehicle for empowerment; beauticians have the skills to help people realize their beauty dreams, and to make them feel more comfortable in their own skin.

People with artistic tendencies are well-suited to this industry. Fine motor skills and an eye for detail are wonderful assets for those who work in beauty, and a career in this area provides a tangible and immediate outlet for those creative impulses.

While careers in traditional art forms are often hyper-competitive and difficult to find success in, positions in beauty are vast and varied. Some beauticians focus on special occasion artistry, working with clients to create hair and makeup looks for weddings, photo shoots, and other important events, while others help people to maintain every day looks through spray tanning, hair removal and manicures.

There is also a great deal of flexibility within this industry. Not only do you have the option of specializing in different areas, you may also have the ability to work freelance, or as part of a team in a salon, day spa, or on a cruise ship. The range of opportunities are endless.

Study and career pathways

There are a number of shorter courses and certificates that will allow you to quickly begin your career in beauty therapy, and gain invaluable hands-on experience in the process. For example, becoming an eyelash and eyebrow technician is one such option which can have you breaking into the industry in as little as 6 months. Almost all study pathways in this area are completed on-campus, as practical experience is highly valued in beauty. Many of the courses even provide a student-run salon on site.

If you are already working within this industry and are looking to extend your skills – or transition from part-time to full-time work – you may like to enrol in a more in-depth course such as a Diploma of Beauty Therapy. This diploma provides pathways into a range of areas including dermal therapy, laser therapy, spa therapy and waxing therapy. These specializations explore current and up-and-coming science and technologies, focusing on the intersection of STEM and the creative arts. You can choose to concentrate on one particular area by honing that skill, or build your portfolio by becoming proficient in many.

Beauty therapy courses offer a number of different choices in terms of length and style of study, as well as a variety of specializations. Explore your options for beauty therapy courses and pathways.


Leadership and entrepreneurial opportunities

A career in beauty therapy also offers leadership opportunities through the management of businesses. Becoming a salon manager will help you to effectively run a team, gaining skills in the management of employees – including recruiting and training – as well as finances and other resources.

If working solo is more your style, there are an increasing number of entrepreneurial opportunities in this industry as well. In addition to freelance work from home, professionals in this area now have the ability to market themselves through social media and other online tools. Many courses in beauty therapy now equip you with the skills to start and promote your own small business in this increasingly digital world.

A growing number of people in this industry are even becoming the face of their own brands, and showcasing their skills as influencers on a variety of social media platforms such as Instagram and TikTok. Many people dream of becoming their own boss – of deciding who to work with and the hours in which to do this in – and a career in beauty therapy may just provide this.

Written by Elisa Thompson
Elisa Thompson
Elisa is a freelance writer and editor. She has a strong background in education, social and cultural studies, and has experience in research and academic writing.

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