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How to Pick the Right Makeup Artist School near Palmer Alaska

Palmer Alaska makeup school student putting makeup on womanSince you have decided to become a cosmetologist and enroll in a makeup artist school near Palmer AK, the process starts to search for and enroll in the ideal school. It's imperative that the program you select not only furnishes the proper training for the specialty you have chosen, but also prepares you for passing the licensing examination. When you start your initial search, you might be somewhat unclear about the contrast between beauty schools and cosmetology schools. Well don't be, because the names are basically interchangeable and both relate to the same type of school. We'll talk a bit further about that in the following section. If you plan on commuting to classes you will want to locate a school that is within driving distance of your Palmer residence. Tuition will additionally be a critical aspect when assessing potential schools. Just bear in mind that because a school is the nearest or the least expensive it's not necessarily the best choice. There are various other qualifications that you should evaluate when analyzing schools, for instance their reputation and accreditation. We will examine what questions you should ask regarding the cosmetology schools you are thinking about later in this article. Before we do, let's talk a bit about what cosmetology is, and what types of courses are available.

Defining Cosmetology

Palmer Alaska makeup artist showcasing bride's wedding makeupCosmetology is a profession that is all about making the human body look more attractive with the use of cosmetics. So of course it makes sense that a number of cosmetology schools are referred to as beauty schools. Most of us think of makeup when we hear the word cosmetics, but really a cosmetic can be almost anything that improves the appearance of a person's skin, hair or nails. If you want to work as a cosmetologist, almost all states mandate that you take some type of specialized training and then become licensed. Once you are licensed, the work settings include not only Palmer AK beauty salons and barber shops, but also such businesses as spas, hotels and resorts. Many cosmetologists, once they have gained experience and a client base, open their own shops or salons. Others will start seeing clients either in their own homes or will go to the client's residence, or both. Cosmetology college graduates are known by many professional names and are employed in a wide variety of specialties including:

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


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

Makeup Artist Certificates and Degrees

Palmer Alaska makeup artist using lip liner on modelThere are essentially two pathways offered to receive 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 finish, while an Associate's degree ordinarily takes about 2 years. If you enroll in a certificate program you will be instructed in each of the main areas of cosmetology. Shorter programs are offered if you wish to focus on just one area, for example makeup. A degree program will also most likely include management and marketing training in order that graduates are better prepared to manage a salon or other Palmer AK business. Higher degrees are not prevalent, but Bachelor and Master's degree programs are offered 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. A number of states only approve schools that are accredited by certain reputable organizations, for instance the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS). We will discuss the advantages of accreditation for the school you choose in the following section.

Online Makeup Artist Courses

Online makeup artist courses are convenient for students who are employed full-time and have family responsibilities that make it hard to enroll in a more traditional school. There are numerous online beauty school programs available that can be accessed through a desktop computer or laptop at the student's convenience. More conventional cosmetology schools are often fast paced since many programs are as short as 6 or 8 months. This means that a substantial amount of time is spent in the classroom. With internet programs, you are covering the same amount 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 training program you select can provide internship training in area Palmer AK salons and parlors to ensure that you also obtain the hands-on training necessary for a comprehensive education. Without the internship portion of the training, it's impossible to obtain the skills required to work in any facet of the cosmetology industry. 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 Classes

makeup artist applying makeup on woman in Palmer Alaska salonBelow is a series of questions that you should look into for any makeup artist training school you are contemplating. As we have previously discussed, the location of the school in relation to your Palmer residence, together with the price of tuition, will undoubtedly be your initial qualifiers. Whether you wish to earn a certificate, diploma or a degree will no doubt be next on your list. But once you have reduced your school choices based on those preliminary qualifications, there are even more factors that you must research and take into consideration before enrolling in a makeup school. Following we have collected some of those additional questions that you need to ask each school before making a final determination.

Is the Program Accredited? It's necessary to make certain that the makeup training program you choose 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 may also be necessary for securing 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 final benefit, many Palmer AK businesses will not hire recent graduates of non-accredited schools, or may look more positively upon those with accredited training.

Does the School have an Excellent Reputation?  Every makeup artist college that you are seriously evaluating should have a good to excellent reputation within the industry. Being accredited is a good starting point. Next, ask the schools for testimonials from their network of Palmer AK employers where they have referred their students. Check that the schools have high job placement rates, signifying that their students are highly regarded. Check rating services for reviews as well as the school's accrediting agencies. If you have any contacts with local salon owners or managers, or someone working in the industry, ask them if they are familiar with the schools you are reviewing. They might even be able to recommend others that you had not looked into. And last, consult the Alaska school licensing authority to see if there have been any complaints submitted or if the schools are in complete compliance.

What’s the School’s Specialty?  Some cosmetology schools offer programs that are broad in nature, focusing on all facets of cosmetology. Others are more focused, offering training in a particular specialty, such as hairstyling, manicuring or electrolysis. Schools that offer degree programs commonly broaden into a management and marketing curriculum. So it's imperative that you decide on a school that specializes in your area of interest. If your goal 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 desire is to open a beauty salon in Palmer AK, then you need to enroll in a degree program that will instruct you how to be an owner/operator. Picking a highly regarded school with a poor program in the specialty you are pursuing will not provide the training you need.

Is Any Live Training Provided?  Practicing and mastering makeup skills and techniques involves plenty of practice on volunteers. Check how much live, hands-on training is provided in the Palmer AK cosmetology lessons you will be attending. Some schools have salons on site that enable students to practice their developing skills on real people. If a makeup school furnishes limited or no scheduled live training, but rather relies predominantly on utilizing mannequins, it may not be the best option for developing your skills. So search for alternate schools that provide this kind of training.

Does the School Provide Job Assistace?  Once a student graduates from a makeup artist program, it's essential that she or he gets help in finding that very first job. Job placement programs are an integral part of that process. Schools that offer assistance maintain relationships with area businesses that are seeking skilled graduates available for hiring. Check that the programs you are looking at have job placement programs and inquire which Palmer AK salons and businesses they refer students to. Additionally, find out what their job placement rates are. Higher rates not only verify that they have broad networks of employers, but that their programs are highly respected as well.

Is Financial Assistance Available?  Almost all cosmetology schools provide financial aid or student loan assistance for their students. Find out if the Palmer AK makeup schools you are looking at have a financial aid office. Talk to a counselor and find out what student loans or grants you may qualify for. If the school is a member of the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS), it will have scholarships available to students too. If a school satisfies all of your other qualifications with the exception of cost, do not eliminate it as an option before you find out what financial help may be available.

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Choose the Right Palmer Makeup Cosmetology Program

Finding and enrolling in the right makeup artist college is essential to get the proper training to become a licensed cosmetology specialist. Make sure to ask all the questions that you require in order to feel positive about your decision. Don't forget to consolidate all of the responses you receive from the makeup school admissions departments, focus on what matters the most to you, and then use that information to compare schools. A good start in your due diligence process is to make certain that the academy and program you select are accredited and have outstanding reputations within the field. If you begin with that foundation, and answer the additional questions supplied in this post, you will be able to narrow down your list of schools so that you can make the ideal selection. And when you graduate and pass your licensing exam, you will be self-assured that you are prepared to begin your career as a professional makeup artist in Palmer Alaska.


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