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How to Pick the Best Makeup School near Bessemer Alabama

Bessemer Alabama makeup artist school student applying makeup on volunteerNow that you have made a decision to become a cosmetologist and attend a makeup artist school near Bessemer AL, the process begins to search for and enroll in the right school. It's imperative that the program you select not only provides the appropriate education for the specialty you have chosen, but also prepares you for passing the licensing exam. When you start your preliminary search, you might be rather confused about the difference between beauty schools and cosmetology schools. Well don't be, because the names are essentially interchangeable and both pertain to the same type of school. We'll talk a little bit more concerning that in the following section. If you intend on commuting to classes you will want to choose a school that is within driving distance of your Bessemer home. Tuition will additionally be an important aspect when assessing prospective schools. Just bear in mind that because a school is the nearest or the lowest cost it's not necessarily the right choice. There are many other considerations that you should weigh when analyzing schools, for instance their reputation and accreditation. We will review what questions you should ask about the cosmetology schools you are thinking about later in this article. Before we do, let's discuss a little bit about what cosmetology is, and what kinds of training programs are offered.

What is Cosmetology

Bessemer Alabama makeup artist viewing bride's makeupCosmetology is an occupation that is everything about making the human anatomy look more attractive with the application of cosmetics. So naturally it makes sense that many cosmetology schools are regarded as beauty schools. Many of us think of makeup when we hear the word cosmetics, but really a cosmetic may be anything that enhances the appearance of a person's skin, hair or nails. If you want to work as a cosmetologist, the majority of states require that you undergo some form of specialized training and then become licensed. Once you are licensed, the work settings include not only Bessemer AL beauty salons and barber shops, but also such venues as spas, hotels and resorts. Many cosmetologists, after they have acquired experience and a customer base, open their own shops or salons. Others will begin servicing clients either in their own residences or will go to the client's house, or both. Cosmetology college graduates have many titles and work in a wide range of specializations including:

• Hairdressers
• Hairstylists
• Beauticians
• Barbers
• Manicurists
• Nail Technicians
Makeup Artists
• Hair Coloring Specialists
• Estheticians
• Electrolysis Technicians


As already mentioned, in the majority of states working cosmetologists must be licensed. In some states there is an exemption. Only those conducting more skilled services, for example hairstylists, are required to be licensed. Others working in cosmetology and less skilled, such as shampooers, are not required to be licensed in those states.

Makeup Artist Degrees and Certificates

Bessemer Alabama makeup artist applying lip liner on modelThere are essentially two options available to obtain makeup artist training and a credential after completion. You can enroll in a certificate (or diploma) program, or you can work toward an Associate's degree. Certificate programs normally require 12 to 18 months to finish, while an Associate's degree ordinarily takes about 2 years. If you enroll in a certificate program you will be instructed in all of the major areas of cosmetology. Shorter programs are offered if you prefer to concentrate on just one area, for instance makeup. A degree program will also probably incorporate management and marketing training so that graduates are better prepared to operate a salon or other Bessemer AL business. More advanced degrees are not prevalent, but Bachelor and Master's degree programs are offered in such specializations as salon or spa management. Whichever type of training program you choose, it's important to make sure that it's approved by the Alabama Board of Cosmetology. Many states only recognize schools that are accredited by certain reputable agencies, including the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS). We will cover the advantages of accreditation for the school you decide on in the next segment.

Makeup Online Programs

Online makeup artist courses are accommodating for students who are employed full time and have family commitments that make it hard to attend a more traditional school. There are a large number of online beauty school programs available that can be accessed through a home computer or laptop at the student's convenience. More traditional beauty schools are often fast paced given that many programs are as short as 6 or 8 months. This means that a large portion of time is spent in the classroom. With online courses, you are dealing with the same amount of material, but you're not devoting many hours outside of your home or commuting back and forth from classes. However, it's important that the program you choose can provide internship training in nearby Bessemer AL salons and parlors in order that you also receive the hands-on training needed for a complete education. Without the internship portion of the training, it's impossible to acquire the skills needed to work in any facet of the cosmetology profession. So make sure if you choose to enroll in an online program to confirm that internship training is available in your area.

Questions to Ask Makeup Artist Cosmetology Schools

makeup artist applying makeup on young lady in Bessemer Alabama salonFollowing is a list of questions that you will want to research for any makeup artist training program you are considering. As we have already covered, the location of the school in relation to your Bessemer home, as well as the price of tuition, will probably be your initial qualifiers. Whether you wish to pursue a certificate, diploma or a degree will undoubtedly be next on your list. But once you have narrowed your school choices based on those preliminary qualifications, there are even more factors that you should research and consider before enrolling in a makeup program. Below we have put together several of those supplemental questions that you need to ask every school before making a final decision.

Is the School Accredited? It's necessary to make sure that the makeup training program you enroll in is accredited. The accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education certified local or national agency, such as the National Accrediting Commission for Cosmetology Arts & Sciences (NACCAS). Schools accredited by the NACCAS must measure up to their high standards assuring a superior curriculum and education. Accreditation may also be essential for obtaining student loans or financial aid, which often are not offered for non- accredited schools. It's also a prerequisite for licensing in several states that the training be accredited. And as a final benefit, a number of Bessemer AL businesses will not recruit recent graduates of non-accredited schools, or may look more favorably upon individuals with accredited training.

Does the School have an Excellent Reputation?  Any makeup artist college that you are seriously evaluating should have a good to excellent reputation within the industry. Being accredited is an excellent starting point. Next, ask the schools for endorsements from their network of Bessemer AL employers where they have placed their students. Confirm that the schools have high job placement rates, attesting that their students are highly regarded. Check rating services for reviews as well as the school's accrediting organizations. If you have any relationships with local salon owners or managers, or someone working in the field, ask them if they are familiar with the schools you are considering. They might even be able to recommend others that you had not thought of. Finally, check with the Alabama school licensing authority to find out if there have been any grievances filed or if the schools are in full compliance.

What’s the School’s Focus?  Some cosmetology schools offer programs that are expansive in nature, concentrating on all facets of cosmetology. Others are more focused, providing training in a specific specialty, such as hairstyling, manicuring or electrolysis. Schools that offer degree programs frequently broaden into a management and marketing curriculum. So it's important that you pick a school that focuses on your area of interest. If your goal is to be trained as a makeup artist, make sure that the school you enroll in is accredited and respected for that program. If your desire is to open a beauty salon in Bessemer AL, then you need to enroll in a degree program that will teach you how to be an owner/operator. Selecting a highly rated school with a weak program in the specialty you are pursuing will not provide the training you require.

Is Enough Live Training Provided?  Learning and perfecting makeup skills and techniques requires plenty of practice on people. Check how much live, hands-on training is furnished in the Bessemer AL cosmetology lessons you will be attending. A number of schools have salons on campus that allow students to practice their growing talents on volunteers. If a makeup program provides minimal or no scheduled live training, but instead relies mainly on utilizing mannequins, it might not be the most effective alternative for developing your skills. So try to find other schools that offer this kind of training.

Does the School have a Job Placement Program?  When a student graduates from a makeup artist program, it's crucial that he or she gets support in securing that first job. Job placement programs are an important part of that process. Schools that provide help develope relationships with area employers that are searching for trained graduates available for hiring. Check that the schools you are looking at have job placement programs and ask which Bessemer AL salons and organizations they refer students to. Additionally, ask what their job placement rates are. High rates not only verify that they have broad networks of employers, but that their programs are highly respected as well.

Is Financial Assistance Available?  The majority of cosmetology schools offer financial aid or student loan assistance for their students. Ask if the Bessemer AL makeup schools you are reviewing have a financial aid office. Speak with a counselor and identify what student loans or grants you may get approved for. If the school is a member of the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS), it will have scholarships available to students as well. If a school satisfies each of your other qualifications with the exception of expense, do not omit it as an alternative before you learn what financial assistance may be provided.

Find Out More About Bessemer Makeup Cosmetology Courses

Find the Right Bessemer Makeup Cosmetology College

Selecting and enrolling in the right makeup artist college is important to get the necessary training to become a licensed cosmetology practitioner. Be sure to ask all the questions that you require so as to feel positive about your decision. Make sure to consolidate all of the information you receive from the makeup school admissions departments, prioritize what matters the most to you, and then utilize that information to compare schools. A reasonable beginning in your due diligence procedure is to make sure that the school and program you choose are accredited and have excellent reputations within the profession. If you begin with that foundation, and answer the additional questions provided in this post, you will be able to filter your list of schools so that you can make the ideal selection. Once you graduate and pass your licensing exam, you will be confident that you are ready to begin your new career as a professional makeup artist in Bessemer Alabama.


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