Everything you need to know about beauty therapy apprenticeships

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manicure at beauty salon

Want a job where you make people feel good about themselves? Are you confident and outgoing, and love working with people? A career as a beauty therapist could be right up your street.

You could find yourself doing gel manicures in a neighbourhood salon, giving facials in a luxury resort, or even applying make-up to the stars on the set of a TV show.

A great way to get a head-start in the beauty industry is by doing an apprenticeship. We’ll take a look at what beauty therapy apprenticeships are like and whether they’re right for you.

What are beauty therapy apprenticeships?

During beauty therapy apprenticeships you will work and study at the same time. You’ll learn a range of practical skills and techniques.

Beauty therapy apprentices learn everything from waxing and
brow shaping to hand and foot treatments, spray tan and
makeup application

You’ll learn the ropes of a busy working salon, gaining transferable skills and like how to serve customers and how to work well in a team. You’ll also attend college to study towards a recognised qualification that is the stepping stone to becoming a fully qualified beauty therapist.

What are the different types?

Intermediate level

In intermediate level beauty therapy apprenticeships your role could be junior beauty therapist, beauty consultant or junior make-up artist. You will gain the Level 2 NVQ in Beauty Therapy.

Your duties would include:

  • Answering phone queries and booking appointments.
  • Greeting customers.
  • Filling out forms with customers’ personal information.
  • Preparing beauty salon rooms for the customers.
  • Practice treatments that you’ve learned at college, including facials, shellac manicures, pedicures, massages, eyebrow shaping, and waxing.
  • Helping to keep the salon clean and tidy.
  • Selling products to customers.

Advanced level

As an advanced level apprentice, you would train as a beauty therapist, make-up artist or beauty massage therapist. You will work towards the NVQ Level 3 in Beauty Therapy. You would learn more complicated treatments and techniques, building on your skill-set.

Your tasks could include:

  • Reception duties and greeting clients.
  • Give manicures, pedicures, make-up applications, waxing, eye treatments, facials.
  • Learn treatments like full-body massage, head massage, aromatherapy oil massages, hot stone therapies.
  • Learn how to improve skin conditions.
  • Learn advanced techniques to remove hair such as microdermabrasion (a treatment that uses crystals to remove dead skin cells).

Is a beauty therapy apprenticeship right for me?

At the intermediate level you usually won’t need any prior qualifications at all – you can apply for an apprenticeship straight from school. (For the advanced level you’ll need to have already gained the Level 2 NVQ in Beauty Therapy).

Apprentices must be able to put customers at ease 

So to see whether beauty therapy is right for you, let’s take a look at some of the skills and personal qualities needed for the job:

Where can beauty therapy apprenticeships take me?

After the apprenticeship you could go on to study specialist techniques like massage, aromatherapy or reflexology (that’s applying pressure to different parts of the body to ease pain or discomfort).

Qualified beauty therapists could go on to work on film
sets for fashion shoots

Farther down the line, as a qualified beauty therapist you could be working in hospitals, resorts, or cruise ships. You could be developing new beauty products or even become your own boss by launching a beauty business.

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Image credits

Main image via Pexels; beauty apprentice by WorldSkills UK via Flickr; beauty salon customer via Pexels; makeup artist by Mainstream via Flickr

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