career: Hair and beauty

What's it all about

The hair and beauty industry might sound fairly black and white, but in actual fact it covers a broad range of job roles that range from working on cruise ships to red carpet make up on the hottest celebs to giving make overs to people in care homes. Occasionally the hair and beauty industry collide into one job role, stylists on sets for example have to tackle both and designers need to visualise every aspect of their model and how it’ll work with their outfits.

Hair dressing and make up artistry is very hands on and practical, but there’s is also a lot of theory involved. As well as that, peoples heads and faces are in your hands so it’s understandable that training is needed before you get yourself a job!

Whatever job role you’re looking at, there’s a way into it without going to university. So long as your CV is full of experience and relevant skills, you’re sure to find a way of getting your foot in the door that suits you as an individual.

What could I be doing? 

What could I be doing?

  • Hairdressing
  • Hair colourist
  • Beauty consultant
  • Spa therapist
  • Nail technician
  • Masseur
  • Hairdressing assistant
  • Retail assistant

Routes in

As a very hands on and practical industry, the most popular way to get in is on the job training. While there are degree courses available, they aren’t as theory based as other degree courses and hold more practical elements. However, learning on the job means you get experience with clients, networking with employers and you can earn a wage.

In either hair or beauty, a popular route in is to do an apprenticeship. This is work based training while also gaining recognised qualifications to be fully qualified in the field. Not only this, but you also earn money as you train – so instead of going in to debt you’re becoming financially independent.

Particularly within the hair industry, internships are a good way of getting to understand how the businesses operate. It’s sort of like an extended work experience where you’re there for longer and are given more responsibilities. You might even be offered training afterwards to go on to a full time job. This is a great way to boost your CV and get your foot on the first step of a tall career ladder.

What skills will I need 

What skills will I need

  • Attention to detail
  • Good eye for colour
  • Time management
  • Efficiency
  • Team work
  • Initiative
  • Honesty
  • Customer service skills
  • Personable and friendly

Been there, done that

We’re still on the hunt for a fabulous case study to show us how it’s done. Are you #DoingItWithoutADegree in this field? Then get in touch by emailing hattie@unisnotforme.com to find out how you can inspire our ambitious school leavers.


Expert opinion

Are you an expert in this field? Then we want you to tell us what it takes to make it in this industry. Get in touch by emailing us at hattie@unisnotforme.com to find out more.



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