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Benefits of a career in beauty therapy

13 Mar 2017
Do you enjoy pampering your family and friends? Are you like a kid in a sweet shop when it comes to new beauty products? A career in beauty may be perfect for you.


What you’ll do
The benefit of working in the beauty industry is your job is very varied. From bridal make-up to anti-aging facials, the work of a beauty therapist is limitless. Your day-to-day tasks may include: giving a facial, giving a makeover by applying and advising on make-up, shaping or colouring eyelashes, giving a manicure, pedicure or nail treatment, wax treatments, or giving electro-therapy treatments. Building your skills portfolio is a great way to help grow your creativity and will increase the services you have to offer.

The location
The environments in which you can work as a beauty therapist are extremely diverse but equally as attractive. The common place to start your beauty therapy career is in a salon or spa. High street salons in large towns are often busy, so if you thrive off a fast-paced and lively environment, then this might be the place for you.

A job in a day spa or destination spa will suit those with a healthy wanderlust. This environment is perfect for meeting new interesting people in a tranquil and more intimate setting for the client. Clients are often very appreciative and happy to be attending the spa, making your day a lot more peaceful and relaxed.

Alternatively, a beauty therapist may work on the move as a mobile therapist or from home as a self-employed therapist. Equally, this location is perfect for the client feeling at ease in a familiar environment.

Salaries and income
Whilst salaries and income may vary depending on your working environment and experience level (typical salaries start at around £12,000 in the UK) there’s always ways to increase how much money you can make as a beauty therapist. Most clients tip between 10 percent and 20 percent of the service, making spa employees some of the highest tipped in the beauty industry. This is also a great way to gauge whether your clients appreciate the service you are providing.

Retail sales are also a good way to increase how much you earn as a beauty therapist.

Boosting earnings by selling the salon or spa’s product range is not only a good way to improve brand awareness for your company but encourages customers to come back to buy again from you. Upselling to every client that you work with could be anything between £50-£100 extra a day, depending on the company’s commission policy.

Giving back to the client
More and more people are visiting beauty therapists either on a monthly or even weekly basis as a way to de-stress and relax after a hard week. With the rise in popularity of eating clean and leading a healthy lifestyle, looking after your body has never been as important to people in the UK. Visiting the spa can remind people of the importance of self-care, causing them to make healthy changes in their lives. By being a beauty therapist, you can help them make that change, and give them the confidence to focus on their healthy living goals.

When working in the beauty field, you will get the chance to meet and work with a wide range of people. This will not only help keep your job feeling fresh and challenging but will keep the role interesting and fun, as one day is never the same as the last. Helping people feel good about themselves is the sole purpose of the job, so that gratifying feeling will be the reason you get out of bed each day.

Career path and progression
Once qualified as a beauty therapist the career opportunities are endless; choosing the career path you want, will depend on what appeals to you. Getting a job in a beauty salon provides you with a stable 9-5 environment, offering you job security and a guaranteed income. This environment often offers the opportunity to expand upon your current skills, taking new qualifications in treatments and procedures, and building your portfolio so you can reach a wider range of customers. With experience you can work your way up into management, earning a more generous pay package and receiving more flexible working hours.

If you are business-minded, you can become self-employed and build a business with your own clientele, working from home or as a mobile beautician. Becoming a mobile beauty therapist can be great for flexible working hours, around childcare or family commitments, but it also means you can be your own boss and work in an environment which suits you.

Is a beauty therapist career right for me?
To be a successful beauty therapist you’ll need to have a friendly and warm approach to clients, making them feel relaxed and comfortable, be tactful and diplomatic, and have great communication skills too. You’ll be skilled in the art of applying make-up, painting nails and generally beautifying yourself and others. As well as the job satisfaction of making your clients feel fabulous, you will need to be able to clearly explain the techniques and procedures you’re using, while learning about new products and treatments along the way.

As previously mentioned, a great way to build your business is through selling products and adding additional services (this way you’ll be able to earn commission and increase your salary), so a business mind and an aptitude for selling is a must.

What qualifications do you need to be a beauty therapist?
Courses and training help build your skills and credibility as a beauty therapist, and to be employed in a beauty salon or health spa, there are certain qualifications that you will need. In most cases in the UK, you will need to have completed both your NVQ Level 2 and 3 Certificates in Beauty Therapy (certification programs vary globally, to find ones in your region visit our Education Page). To do this there are positions available where you can study for the qualifications on the job in a salon or spa, or you can do a full-time or part-time course in a college or private beauty school.

Once you have completed these qualifications, you may want to add to your skills by completing a short course in a specialist area; this will not only improve your kudos as a beauty therapist but make you stand out as an individual in your field. Examples of courses available may include, UV tanning, laser and light treatments, epilation techniques or face and body art.

Sounds like the ideal job right? Well, you wouldn’t be wrong.

For a career that can offer job security, working opportunities, career progression, meeting new people and learning everyday…why would you say no? If you already have the interest and the skills to make it as a beauty therapist, all you need is the education. Take advantage of building a career tailor-made to suit you, and become a beauty therapist today!

By Carrie Simmonds

About the author
Carrie Simmonds is a Hair & Beauty Lecturer at MidKent College. Carrie specialises in the holistic side of the beauty industry including pregnancy massage, manual lymphatic drainage and lava shell massage. Upon completing her NVQ L2 & L3 Beauty Therapy courses at college and undertaking separate part time courses for Indian head massage and Reflexology, Carrie worked in a salon for 6 years progressing to a senior therapist before then leaving to go into teaching. Alongside teaching, Carrie also provides beauty therapy services from her home based treatment room and also works back stage at the O2 for the Jingle Bell Ball delivering massages to the performers.

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