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Hair, Fitness and Beauty Career Choices, Training and Qualifications

Check out careers in the hair, fitness and beauty industries – all fantastic jobs to consider if you love working with people!


Hairdressing and barbering are great career options for those with an eye for fashion, artistic flair, creativity and really good people skills. As a junior hairdresser, you would start your career by greeting customers, taking their coats, offering and serving drinks as well as shampooing and conditioning clients’ hair prior to them having it cut and styled by a more senior member of the salon staff. You would learn simple cutting techniques and be responsible for keeping the salon clean and tidy, whilst training to master more complicated techniques and learning the theory of hairdressing.

Once you’ve got some experience under your belt, as a senior hair stylist you’d be cutting and styling clients’ hair as well as colouring, perming or straightening and designing up-dos or other elaborate hairstyles, for customers’ weddings and special occasions.

Once fully qualified, you could work in an established salon or set up your own hairdressing business, either in a salon or as a mobile hair stylist, going into clients’ homes to do their hair. You could also work as a freelance hair stylist in hotels, hospitals or cruise ships or train to specialise in a specific area of hairdressing, like applying hair extensions or straightening and braiding Afro-Caribbean hair or you could go into theatrical wig making or hairstyling for TV and film.

There are several different ways to get into hairdressing and/or barbering. You can choose to do a course at your local college of further education or you can do an apprenticeship or a traineeship with a local hairdressing salon.


Careers in this industry include beauty therapist, nail technician or makeup artist. College courses are available in these three specialisms, as well as many more. Apprenticeships are also widely available in beauty salons and nail bars and as with hairdressing, once you are fully qualified and have plenty of work experience under your belt, you can work in abroad, in hotels and on cruise ships or you can train further and go into the theatre, TV and film.


What does a hairdressing apprenticeship involve?

If you’re really keen on a career as a hairdresser the first thing to do is to get some work experience. If you’re still at school, you can work as a junior in a salon on Saturdays, in the evenings or during school holidays or you can start your career on a hairdressing apprenticeship. Once you have some experience and ... Read More »

Fringe benefits

The hair and beauty industry constantly requires new talent to satisfy trend-conscious clients. BY SOPHIE BARNES The hair and beauty workforce needs to be focused and have an eye for visual and creative detail not to mention excellent interpersonal skills including the ability to gauge a customer’s mood, to know when to be cheerful and chatty or when clients just ... Read More »

A cut above the competition

Careers in hair and beauty can take you anywhere you want to go, but don’t take our word for it – a former world champion hairdresser lifts the lid on an industry that’s truly attractive. BY Sam Worth The hair and beauty industry offers a diverse range of careers in a multitude of environments, whether as a barber, beauty therapist, make-up ... Read More »

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