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How to Choose the Right Makeup Artist School near Flagstaff Arizona

Flagstaff Arizona makeup school student putting makeup on womanSince you have made a decision to train as a cosmetologist and attend a makeup artist school near Flagstaff AZ, the process starts to search for and enroll in the best school. It's important that the program you pick not only furnishes the necessary education for the specialty you have chosen, but also readies you for passing the licensing examination. When you begin your initial search, you might be a little bit puzzled about the distinction between beauty schools and cosmetology schools. Well don't be, because the titles are pretty much interchangeable and both relate to the same kind of school. We'll talk a bit further concerning that in the upcoming section. If you plan on commuting to classes you will want to find a school that is within driving distance of your Flagstaff residence. Tuition will also be a critical factor when evaluating prospective schools. Just keep in mind that because a school is the nearest or the cheapest it's not necessarily the ideal choice. There are a number of other qualifications that you should evaluate when reviewing schools, for instance their reputation and accreditation. We will go over what questions you should ask about the cosmetology schools you are looking at later within this article. Before we do, let's talk a bit about what cosmetology is, and what kinds of courses are offered.

What is Cosmetology

Flagstaff Arizona makeup artist finishing bride's makeupCosmetology is an occupation that is everything about making the human body look more beautiful through the application of cosmetics. So of course it makes sense that numerous 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 almost 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 take some form of specialized training and then be licensed. Once licensed, the work settings include not only Flagstaff AZ beauty salons and barber shops, but also such venues as spas, hotels and resorts. Many cosmetologists, once they have gotten 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 have many titles and work in a wide range 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 have to be licensed. In some states there is an exception. Only those offering more skilled services, for example hairstylists, are required to be licensed. Other people working in cosmetology and less skilled, which include shampooers, are not required to be licensed in those states.

Makeup Artist Education Options

Flagstaff Arizona makeup artist using lip gloss on clientThere 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 normally take 12 to 18 months to complete, 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 major areas of cosmetology. Shorter programs are available if you wish to specialize in just one area, for example makeup. A degree program will also most likely include management and marketing training so that graduates are better prepared to run a salon or other Flagstaff AZ business. More advanced degrees are not common, but Bachelor and Master's degree programs are offered in such areas as salon or spa management. Whichever type of program you go with, it's imperative to make sure that it's recognized by the Arizona Board of Cosmetology. Numerous states only approve schools that are accredited by certain respected agencies, for example the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS). We will cover the benefits of accreditation for the school you decide on in the following section.

Online Makeup Programs

Online makeup classes are accommodating for students who are working full time and have family commitments that make it difficult to attend a more traditional school. There are many online cosmetology school programs offered that can be accessed via a home computer or laptop at the student's convenience. More conventional beauty programs are often fast paced since many courses 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 amount of material, but you are not spending many hours away from your home or driving back and forth from classes. On the other hand, it's vital that the school you select can provide internship training in nearby Flagstaff AZ salons and parlors in order that you also receive the hands-on training required for a comprehensive education. Without the internship portion of the training, it's difficult to acquire 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 confirm that internship training is available in your area.

What to Ask Makeup Cosmetology Programs

makeup artist applying makeup on woman in Flagstaff Arizona salonBelow is a series of questions that you should investigate for any makeup artist training school you are contemplating. As we have already discussed, the location of the school in relation to your Flagstaff residence, together with the cost of tuition, will probably be your first qualifiers. Whether you want to pursue a certificate, diploma or a degree will no doubt be next on your list. But once you have narrowed your school options based on those initial qualifications, there are additional factors that you must research and consider before enrolling in a makeup school. Below we have collected some of those additional questions that you need to ask every school before making a final determination.

Is the School Accredited? It's essential to make sure that the makeup training program you pick is accredited. The accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education recognized 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 quality curriculum and education. Accreditation may also be essential for acquiring student loans or financial aid, which often are not obtainable for non- accredited schools. It's also a prerequisite for licensing in many states that the training be accredited. And as a concluding benefit, many Flagstaff AZ employers will not recruit recent graduates of non-accredited schools, or may look more favorably upon those with accredited training.

Does the School have a Great Reputation?  Each makeup artist college that you are seriously evaluating should have a good to outstanding reputation within the field. Being accredited is an excellent starting point. Next, ask the schools for references from their network of Flagstaff AZ employers where they have referred their students. Verify that the schools have high job placement rates, showing that their students are highly demanded. Check rating services for reviews as well as the school's accrediting agencies. If you have any contacts with area salon owners or managers, or anyone working in the business, ask them if they are familiar with the schools you are looking at. They might even be able to propose others that you had not thought of. And last, contact the Arizona school licensing authority to see if there have been any grievances submitted or if the schools are in complete compliance.

What’s the School’s Focus?  Many beauty schools offer programs that are broad in nature, concentrating on all areas of cosmetology. Others are more focused, offering training in a specific specialty, for instance hairstyling, manicuring or electrolysis. Schools that offer degree programs often expand into a management and marketing curriculum. So it's imperative that you enroll in 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 well regarded for that program. If your vision is to open a beauty salon in Flagstaff AZ, then you want to enroll in a degree program that will instruct you how to be an owner/operator. Choosing a highly ranked school with a poor program in the specialty you are seeking will not deliver the training you require.

Is Enough Live Training Provided?  Practicing and refining makeup techniques and abilities involves plenty of practice on volunteers. Check how much live, hands-on training is included in the Flagstaff AZ beauty courses you will be attending. Some schools have salons on campus that enable students to practice their developing skills on real people. If a makeup academy offers little or no scheduled live training, but instead relies predominantly on utilizing mannequins, it may not be the most effective alternative for acquiring your skills. So try to find other schools that furnish this type of training.

Does the School Provide Job Assistace?  Once a student graduates from a makeup academy, it's imperative that he or she receives assistance in landing that initial job. Job placement programs are an integral part of that process. Schools that provide help maintain relationships with area employers that are searching for skilled graduates available for hiring. Confirm that the schools you are looking at have job placement programs and ask which Flagstaff AZ salons and businesses they refer students to. Also, find out what their job placement rates are. High rates not only confirm 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 offer financial aid or student loan assistance for their students. Find out if the Flagstaff AZ makeup schools you are reviewing have a financial aid office. Consult with a counselor and learn 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 offered to students too. If a school satisfies each of your other qualifications except for expense, do not omit it as an alternative until you find out what financial help may be provided.

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Choose the Right Flagstaff Makeup Beauty College

Picking and enrolling in the ideal makeup artist program is essential to obtain the appropriate training to become a licensed cosmetology professional. Be sure to ask all the questions that you require in order to feel positive about your decision. Make sure to consolidate all of the information you get from the makeup school admissions departments, focus on what matters the most to you, and then employ that data to compare schools. A good beginning in your due diligence process is to make certain that the academy and program you decide on are accredited and have impressive reputations within the field. If you begin with that base, and answer 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 exam, you will be self-assured that you are prepared to start your new career as a professional makeup artist in Flagstaff Arizona.


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