I’m thinking of going to a part-time course to study cosmetology, but I am not well informed. What would you suggest?
I was in a similar place as you just a year and a half ago. My previous work experience was in the financial sector and I really wanted to switch to something that was more hands on in connecting with people. It's a big step to think about taking your life in a whole new direction!
While I was considering this industry, I spent a lot of time on professional forums and websites — just by reading what's out there on the Internet I got a good feel for what it's like to work in this industry.
The next thing I did was visit the two schools in my area to find out what I could about the industry, what the schools were like, etc. I will tell you that the school environment was one of the toughest parts of my transition. Think of it as high school drama on steroids and you get the right idea.
Certainly check into what is involved to attend your local school, but also be on the lookout for outside education opportunities. Most schools only equip you to get your license; if you want to really get ahead quickly, be prepared to attend additional classes during and after traditional schooling and to practice, practice, practice!
While I was in the research phase, I also went in and talked to a woman I had met previously who had worked in the industry for a long time. I highly recommend that you talk to people who are working in your local market to find out what jobs are available, what styles are popular, etc. If you can find someone to mentor you, you will be ahead of the game!
—Candice, Panache Nail Studio, Marysville, Wash.