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How to Select the Best Makeup College near Anchorage Alaska

Anchorage Alaska 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 Anchorage AK, the task begins to search for and enroll in the right school. It's important that the program you choose not only furnishes the proper training for the specialty you have chosen, but also readies you for passing the licensing exam. When you start your initial search, you might be somewhat puzzled about the contrast between beauty schools and cosmetology schools. Well don't be, because the names are basically interchangeable and both refer to the same type of school. We'll speak a bit further concerning that in the upcoming segment. If you plan on commuting to classes you will need to locate a school that is within driving distance of your Anchorage home. Tuition will also be an important factor when reviewing potential schools. Just keep in mind that because a school is the nearest or the least expensive it's not always the ideal option. There are a number of other qualifications that you should evaluate when analyzing schools, for instance their reputation and accreditation. We will review what questions you should ask concerning the cosmetology schools you are considering later in this article. Before we do, let's talk a bit about what cosmetology is, and what kinds of training programs are offered.

Definition of Cosmetology

Anchorage Alaska makeup artist showcasing young bride's wedding makeupCosmetology is a profession that is all about making the human anatomy look more attractive through the use of cosmetics. So naturally it makes sense that numerous cosmetology schools are referred to as beauty schools. Most of us think of makeup when we hear the term cosmetics, but basically a cosmetic may be almost anything that improves the look of a person's skin, hair or nails. In order to work as a cosmetologist, almost all states require that you undergo some kind of specialized training and then be licensed. Once licensed, the work environments include not only Anchorage AK beauty salons and barber shops, but also such businesses as spas, hotels and resorts. Many cosmetologists, once they have gotten experience and a customer base, establish their own shops or salons. Others will start seeing clients either in their own homes or will travel to the client's home, or both. Cosmetology college graduates are known by many professional names and work in a wide variety of specialties including:

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


As previously mentioned, in most states working cosmetologists must be licensed. In a few states there is an exemption. Only those conducting more skilled services, such as hairstylists, are required to be licensed. Other people employed in cosmetology and less skilled, including shampooers, are not required to be licensed in those states.

Makeup Artist Degree Options

Anchorage Alaska makeup artist using lip liner on young womanThere are primarily two options available to get makeup artist training and a credential upon completion. You can enroll in a certificate (or diploma) course, or you can pursue an Associate's degree. Certificate programs normally require 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 trained in all of the main areas of cosmetology. Shorter programs are available if you wish to concentrate on just one area, for example makeup. A degree program will also most likely incorporate management and marketing training to ensure that graduates are better prepared to manage a salon or other Anchorage AK business. More advanced degrees are not typical, but Bachelor and Master's degree programs are available in such specialties as salon or spa management. Whatever type of course you go with, it's imperative to make sure that it's recognized by the Alaska Board of Cosmetology. Many states only certify schools that are accredited by certain respected agencies, such as the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS). We will cover the benefits of accreditation for the school you choose in the following segment.

Makeup Artist Online Programs

Online makeup schools are advantageous for students who are employed full time and have family obligations that make it difficult to enroll in a more traditional school. There are a large number of online cosmetology school programs offered that can be accessed by means of a desktop computer or laptop at the student's convenience. More conventional cosmetology programs are typically fast paced due to the fact that many courses are as brief as 6 or 8 months. This means that a considerable amount of time is spent in the classroom. With online programs, you are dealing with the same amount of material, but you are not devoting many hours away from your home or driving to and from classes. On the other hand, it's imperative that the program you pick can provide internship training in nearby Anchorage AK salons and parlors in order that you also receive the hands-on training necessary for a complete education. Without the internship portion of the training, it's difficult to acquire the skills required to work in any area of the cosmetology profession. So make sure if you decide to enroll in an online school to confirm that internship training is available in your area.

What to Ask Makeup Cosmetology Courses

makeup artist applying makeup on woman in Anchorage Alaska 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 Anchorage residence, as well as the expense of tuition, will undoubtedly be your first qualifiers. Whether you want to pursue a certificate, diploma or a degree will undoubtedly be next on your list. But once you have narrowed your school options based on those initial qualifications, there are even more factors that you must research and consider before enrolling in a makeup program. Below we have compiled several of those supplemental questions that you need to ask each school before making a final decision.

Is the School Accredited? It's necessary to make sure that the makeup school you select is accredited. The accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged local or national organization, such as the National Accrediting Commission for Cosmetology Arts & Sciences (NACCAS). Schools accredited by the NACCAS must comply with their high standards ensuring a quality curriculum and education. Accreditation can also be necessary for acquiring student loans or financial aid, which typically are not obtainable for non- accredited schools. It's also a criteria for licensing in several states that the training be accredited. And as a concluding benefit, many Anchorage AK businesses will not employ recent graduates of non-accredited schools, or might look more favorably upon those with accredited training.

Does the School have a Great Reputation?  Any makeup artist college that you are seriously evaluating should have a good to exceptional reputation within the profession. Being accredited is an excellent starting point. Next, ask the schools for testimonials from their network of Anchorage AK employers where they have placed their students. Confirm that the schools have high job placement rates, showing that their students are highly demanded. Visit rating services for reviews in addition to the school's accrediting organizations. If you have any relationships with area salon owners or managers, or anyone working in the industry, ask them if they are familiar with the schools you are reviewing. They may even be able to propose others that you had not looked into. And last, contact the Alaska school licensing authority to find out if there have been any complaints submitted or if the schools are in complete compliance.

What’s the School’s Focus?  Many beauty schools offer programs that are expansive in nature, focusing on all areas of cosmetology. Others are more focused, offering training in a specific specialty, such as hairstyling, manicuring or electrolysis. Schools that offer degree programs often broaden into a management and marketing curriculum. So it's important that you choose a school that focuses on your area of interest. If your ambition 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 Anchorage AK, then you need to enroll in a degree program that will teach you how to be an owner/operator. Picking a highly rated school with a poor program in the specialty you are pursuing will not provide the training you need.

Is Enough Hands-On Training Provided?  Practicing and perfecting makeup skills and techniques involves lots of practice on volunteers. Check how much live, hands-on training is provided in the Anchorage AK cosmetology classes you will be attending. Some schools have salons on campus that allow students to practice their growing skills on real people. If a makeup program provides minimal or no scheduled live training, but rather relies predominantly on the use of mannequins, it may not be the best option for developing your skills. Therefore search for alternate schools that furnish this type of training.

Does the School have a Job Placement Program?  As soon as a student graduates from a makeup school, it's crucial that he or she gets aid in securing that first job. Job placement programs are an integral part of that process. Schools that furnish aid develope relationships with local employers that are searching for qualified graduates available for hiring. Check that the programs you are contemplating have job placement programs and ask which Anchorage AK salons and businesses they refer students to. Also, find out what their job placement rates are. Higher rates not only confirm that they have extensive networks of employers, but that their programs are highly regarded as well.

Is Financial Aid Offered?  Almost all cosmetology schools offer financial aid or student loan assistance for their students. Check if the Anchorage AK makeup schools you are reviewing have a financial aid office. Consult with a counselor and learn 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 offered to students also. If a school fulfills each of your other qualifications with the exception of expense, do not eliminate it as an option before you learn what financial assistance may be provided.

Learn More About Anchorage Makeup Cosmetology Classes

Select the Right Anchorage Makeup Beauty Program

Finding and enrolling in the right makeup artist program is important to receive the proper training to become a licensed cosmetology practitioner. Make sure to ask all the questions that you need to in order to feel positive about your decision. Make sure to organize all of the responses you receive from the makeup school admissions departments, prioritize what matters the most to you, and then use that data to contrast schools. A sensible start in your due diligence procedure is to make sure that the college and program you choose are accredited and have impressive reputations within the profession. If you begin with that foundation, and address the additional questions supplied in this post, you will be able to filter your list of schools so that you can make the right selection. And when you graduate and pass your licensing examination, you will be self-assured that you are prepared to begin your career as a professional makeup artist in Anchorage Alaska.


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