How to Enroll In the Right Esthetician Course Near Birmingham Alabama
Once you have decided to enter the field of cosmetology and attend an esthetician school near Birmingham AL, the task starts to locate and enroll in the right program. It's imperative that the program you choose not only provides the necessary education for the specialty you have chosen, but also readies you for passing the licensing exam. When you begin your preliminary search, you might be a little bit puzzled about the difference between beauty schools and cosmetology schools. Well don't be, because the titles are essentially interchangeable and both relate to the same type of school. If you intend on commuting to classes you will want to find a school that is within driving distance of your Birmingham home. Tuition will additionally be a critical aspect when reviewing prospective schools. Just keep in mind that because a school is the closest or the cheapest it's not always the best option. There are many other qualifications that you should evaluate when comparing schools, such as their reputation and accreditation. We will go over what questions you should ask concerning the aesthetician schools you are thinking about later in this article. Before we do, let's discuss a little bit about what kinds of training programs are available.
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Esthetics school is an investment of time, energy, and money. Requirements vary from state to state, but the majority of states require that you complete at least 600 hours of training. Full-time school can take an average of six months to complete, and part-time school can take anywhere from 9-12 months. The primary purpose of esthetics school is to get you ready to pass the state licensing exam. They also teach basic skills that you will need to perfect through experience and sometimes additional classes, such as giving facials, body treatments, and performing waxing. More advanced training includes learning to work with machines, such as IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) and Lasers used to rejuvenate the skin and permanently remove hair.
Esthetician Job Description
Estheticians provide a wide range of beauty services to help their Birmingham Alabama clients look and feel better. This includes improving the quality of the skin (including the treatment of skin disorders), hair removal, permanent makeup application, and facial massage. Some types of estheticians, like medical estheticians, provide highly specialized procedures that require detailed training in order for it to be done safely and effectively. Medical estheticians can help individuals suffering from serious skin disorders, burns, and other trauma, and to help with pre and post-operative surgery affecting the health of their skin. Estheticians work closely with their clients in a friendly and positive manner, so an enthusiastic attitude and desire to help people is an excellent attribute for an aspiring esthetician to possess. Some of the basic duties an esthetician may perform will include such tasks as:
- Assessing a patient’s needs
- Chemical peels
- Laser treatments
- Massage of the head and neck
Online Esthetics Programs
Online esthetician schools are advantageous for Birmingham AL students who are employed full-time and have family commitments that make it hard to enroll in a more traditional school. There are numerous web-based beauty school programs offered that can be accessed by means of a desktop computer or laptop at the student's convenience. More conventional cosmetology schools are typically fast paced due to the fact that many courses are as brief as 6 or 8 months. This means that a considerable portion of time is spent in the classroom. With internet programs, you are covering the same amount of material, but you are not devoting many hours outside of your home or commuting back and forth from classes. On the other hand, it's essential that the training program you select can provide internship training in local salons and parlors so that you also obtain the hands-on training required for a complete education. Without the internship part of the training, it's difficult to gain the skills required to work in any facet of the cosmetology industry. So be sure if you decide to enroll in an online school to verify that internship training is available in your area.
What to Ask Aesthetician Trade Schools
Below is a series of questions that you should research for any esthetician training program you are considering. As we have already discussed, the location of the school in relation to your Birmingham home, together with the expense of tuition, will most likely be your first qualifiers. Whether you wish to pursue a certificate, diploma or a degree will probably be next on your list. But once you have reduced your school options based on those initial qualifications, there are additional factors that you should research and take into consideration before enrolling in a cosmetology program. Below we have compiled some of those supplemental questions that you need to ask every school before making a final determination.
Is the Esthetician School Accredited? It's essential to make certain that the esthetician training program you pick 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). Schools accredited by the NACCAS must meet their high standards guaranteeing a quality curriculum and education. Accreditation can also be important for acquiring student loans or financial aid, which typically 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, numerous Birmingham AL businesses will not hire recent graduates of non-accredited schools, or may look more favorably upon individuals with accredited training.
Does the School have a Great Reputation? Each esthetician school that you are seriously evaluating should have a good to excellent reputation within the field. Being accredited is a good starting point. Next, ask the schools for references from their network of businesses where they have placed their students. Confirm that the schools have high job placement rates, indicating that their students are highly sought after. Check rating services for reviews together with the school's accrediting agencies. If you have any contacts with Birmingham AL salon owners or managers, or someone working in the trade, ask them if they are familiar with the schools you are considering. They may even be able to suggest others that you had not thought of. And finally, check with the Alabama school licensing authority to find out if there have been any grievances filed or if the schools are in complete compliance.
What’s the School’s Specialty? Some esthetician schools offer programs that are expansive in nature, concentrating on all areas of cosmetology. Others are more focused, providing training in a specific specialty, for example hairstyling, manicuring or electrolysis. Schools that offer degree programs frequently broaden into a management and marketing curriculum. So it's important that you select a school that specializes in your area of interest. Since your goal is to be trained as an esthetician, make certain that the school you enroll in is accredited and respected for that program. If your dream is to launch a Birmingham AL beauty salon, then you want to enroll in a degree program that will teach you how to be an owner/operator as well. Selecting a highly ranked school with a weak program in the specialty you are pursuing will not deliver the training you need.
Is Plenty of Hands-On Training Provided? Practicing and perfecting esthetician techniques and abilities involves plenty of practice on people. Check how much live, hands-on training is furnished in the beauty lessons you will be attending. Some schools have salons on site that allow students to practice their growing skills on real people. If a beauty program offers minimal or no scheduled live training, but instead relies heavily on the use of mannequins, it may not be the most effective option for acquiring your skills. Therefore search for other schools that furnish this type of training.
Does the School have a Job Placement Program? As soon as a student graduates from an esthetician academy, it's essential that he or she gets assistance in landing that initial job. Job placement programs are an integral part of that process. Schools that provide aid develop relationships with Birmingham AL employers that are seeking qualified graduates available for hiring. Check that the schools you are considering have job placement programs and ask which salons and organizations 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 regarded as well.
Is Financial Aid Offered? Many esthetician schools provide financial aid or student loan assistance for their students. Ask if the 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 also. If a school satisfies each of your other qualifications with the exception of cost, do not drop it as an alternative until you determine what financial help may be offered.
Enroll in the Best Birmingham Esthetician Training
Locating and enrolling in the right esthetician school 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 certain about your decision. Make sure to consolidate all of the responses you get from the beauty school admissions departments, prioritize what matters the most to you, and then utilize that information to contrast schools. A good start in your due diligence process is to make sure that the college and program you decide on are accredited and have exceptional reputations within the profession. If you start with that foundation, and address the additional questions presented in this article, you will be able to filter your list of schools so that you can make the right selection. Once you graduate and pass your licensing exam, you will be self-assured that you are prepared to launch your career as a professional esthetician in Birmingham Alabama.