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How to Select the Best Makeup School near Tuscaloosa Alabama

Tuscaloosa Alabama makeup school student putting makeup on womanOnce you have made a decision to become a cosmetologist and enroll in a makeup artist school near Tuscaloosa AL, the process starts to search for and enroll in the best school. It's important that the school you pick not only provides the proper instruction for the specialty you have selected, but also prepares you for passing the licensing exam. When you begin your initial search, you might be somewhat confused about the difference between beauty schools and cosmetology schools. Well don't be, because the names are essentially interchangeable and both refer to the same type of school. We'll discuss a bit more about that in the upcoming section. If you anticipate commuting to classes you will want to find a school that is within driving distance of your Tuscaloosa home. Tuition will likewise be a critical aspect when assessing prospective schools. Just remember that because a school is the nearest or the least expensive it's not always the best option. There are many other considerations that you should evaluate when comparing schools, such as their reputation and accreditation. We will examine what questions you should ask concerning the cosmetology schools you are considering later within this article. Before we do, let's discuss a bit about what cosmetology is, and what kinds of training programs are offered.

Defining Cosmetology

Tuscaloosa Alabama makeup artist viewing young bride's wedding makeupCosmetology is a profession that is everything about making the human anatomy look more beautiful through the application of cosmetics. So of course it makes sense that numerous cosmetology schools are referred to as beauty schools. Most of us think of makeup when we hear the word cosmetics, but actually a cosmetic may be almost anything that enhances the appearance of a person's skin, hair or nails. In order to work as a cosmetologist, most states require that you go through some type of specialized training and then be licensed. Once licensed, the work environments include not only Tuscaloosa AL beauty salons and barber shops, but also such places as spas, hotels and resorts. Many cosmetologists, once they have gotten experience and a client base, establish their own shops or salons. Others will start seeing customers either in their own residences or will travel to the client's residence, or both. Cosmetology college graduates have many names and work in a wide variety of specializations including:

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


As already stated, in most states practicing cosmetologists have to be licensed. In a few states there is an exception. Only those offering more skilled services, for instance hairstylists, are required to be licensed. Others employed in cosmetology and less skilled, such as shampooers, are not required to get licensed in those states.

Makeup Artist Degrees

Tuscaloosa Alabama makeup artist applying lip liner on young womanThere are essentially two pathways available to get makeup artist training and a credential after completion. You can enroll in a certificate (or diploma) course, or you can work toward an Associate's degree. Certificate programs usually take 12 to 18 months to complete, while an Associate's degree commonly takes about 2 years. If you enroll in a certificate program you will be instructed in each of the major areas of cosmetology. Shorter programs are offered if you want to specialize in just one area, such as makeup. A degree program will also likely include management and marketing training to ensure that graduates are better prepared to manage a salon or other Tuscaloosa AL business. More advanced degrees are not typical, but Bachelor and Master's degree programs are available in such specializations as salon or spa management. Whichever type of course you decide on, it's imperative to make certain that it's approved by the Alabama Board of Cosmetology. A number of states only certify schools that are accredited by certain highly regarded organizations, including the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS). We will discuss the benefits of accreditation for the school you select in the following section.

Makeup Artist Online Schools

Online makeup classes are accommodating for students who are employed full time and have family obligations that make it challenging to attend a more traditional school. There are a large number of online cosmetology school programs offered that can be accessed by means of a personal computer or laptop at the student's convenience. More traditional cosmetology schools are frequently fast paced since many programs are as brief as 6 or 8 months. This means that a significant amount of time is spent in the classroom. With internet courses, you are covering the same volume of material, but you're not spending many hours away from your home or travelling to and from classes. However, it's important that the program you pick can provide internship training in nearby Tuscaloosa AL salons and parlors so that you also get the hands-on training needed for a comprehensive education. Without the internship portion of the training, it's impossible to acquire the skills necessary to work in any facet of the cosmetology profession. So be sure if you choose to enroll in an online program to verify that internship training is provided in your area.

What to Ask Makeup Artist Cosmetology Programs

makeup artist applying makeup on young lady in Tuscaloosa Alabama beauty salonBelow is a list of questions that you need to look into for any makeup artist training program you are contemplating. As we have previously discussed, the location of the school in relation to your Tuscaloosa home, as well as the cost of tuition, will undoubtedly be your initial qualifiers. Whether you would like to pursue a certificate, diploma or a degree will probably be next on your list. But once you have narrowed your school choices based on those preliminary qualifications, there are additional factors that you need to research and take into consideration before enrolling in a makeup school. Below we have compiled several of those supplemental questions that you should ask every school before making a final selection.

Is the School Accredited? It's essential to make sure that the makeup college you enroll in is accredited. The accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education certified local or national organization, such as the National Accrediting Commission for Cosmetology Arts & Sciences (NACCAS). Programs accredited by the NACCAS must meet their high standards assuring a superior curriculum and education. Accreditation may also be important for obtaining student loans or financial aid, which typically are not offered for non- accredited schools. It's also a criteria for licensing in many states that the training be accredited. And as a concluding benefit, a number of Tuscaloosa AL employers will not hire recent graduates of non-accredited schools, or may look more favorably upon individuals with accredited training.

Does the School have a Good Reputation?  Each makeup artist school that you are seriously evaluating should have a good to exceptional reputation within the field. Being accredited is an excellent starting point. Next, ask the schools for references from their network of Tuscaloosa AL employers where they have placed their students. Confirm that the schools have high job placement rates, attesting that their students are highly demanded. Visit rating services for reviews in addition to the school's accrediting agencies. If you have any contacts with area salon owners or managers, or any person working in the field, ask them if they are acquainted with the schools you are looking at. They may even be able to recommend others that you had not looked into. And finally, check with the Alabama school licensing authority to see if there have been any grievances filed or if the schools are in total compliance.

What’s the School’s Focus?  Many beauty schools offer programs that are broad in nature, focusing on all areas of cosmetology. Others are more focused, offering training in a particular specialty, for example hairstyling, manicuring or electrolysis. Schools that offer degree programs frequently expand into a management and marketing curriculum. So it's imperative that you select a school that specializes in your area of interest. If your intention is to be trained as a makeup artist, make certain that the school you enroll in is accredited and respected for that program. If your dream is to launch a beauty salon in Tuscaloosa AL, then you want to enroll in a degree program that will teach you how to be an owner/operator. Picking a highly regarded school with a weak program in the specialty you are pursuing will not provide the training you require.

Is Any Hands-On Training Provided?  Studying and perfecting makeup techniques and abilities requires plenty of practice on volunteers. Find out how much live, hands-on training is provided in the Tuscaloosa AL cosmetology courses you will be attending. Some schools have salons on site that allow students to practice their growing talents on volunteers. If a makeup program offers little or no scheduled live training, but rather relies heavily on the use of mannequins, it may not be the best alternative for cultivating your skills. Therefore look for other schools that furnish this kind of training.

Does the School have a Job Placement Program?  As soon as a student graduates from a makeup artist program, it's important that she or he gets help in landing that initial job. Job placement programs are an integral part of that process. Schools that offer assistance maintain relationships with local employers that are seeking skilled graduates available for hiring. Check that the programs you are considering have job placement programs and inquire which Tuscaloosa AL salons and businesses they refer students to. Additionally, ask what their job placement rates are. Higher rates not only verify that they have wide networks of employers, but that their programs are highly respected as well.

Is Financial Aid Offered?  The majority of cosmetology schools provide financial aid or student loan assistance for their students. Find out if the Tuscaloosa AL makeup schools you are considering have a financial aid office. Consult with a counselor and identify what student loans or grants you may qualify for. If the school belongs to the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS), it will have scholarships available to students as well. If a school fulfills each of your other qualifications except for expense, do not discard it as an option before you find out what financial help may be offered.

Find Out More About Tuscaloosa Makeup Artist Cosmetology Courses

Select the Right Tuscaloosa Makeup Cosmetology College

Selecting and enrolling in the right makeup artist school is imperative to receive the necessary training to become a licensed cosmetology professional. Make sure to ask all the questions that you need to so as to feel positive about your decision. Make certain to organize all of the responses you get from the makeup school admissions departments, prioritize what matters the most to you, and then utilize that data to contrast schools. A sensible start in your due diligence procedure is to make certain that the academy and program you pick are accredited and have impressive reputations within the field. If you start with that base, and address the additional questions supplied in this post, you will be able to narrow down your list of schools so that you can make the proper choice. And when you graduate and pass your licensing examination, you will be confident that you are ready to begin your new career as a professional makeup artist in Tuscaloosa Alabama.


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