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Working in hair and beauty

The hair and beauty industry is large and jobs exist is hairdressing, beauty and makeup.  Here is a brief outline of the kind of jobs available and the skills that you will need.

Jobs in hair and beauty can involve working in a high street salon, a salon inside a hotel or leisure complex, on set for TV or film or even on a cruise ship.  You could be employed, freelance or self-employed and aside from the obvious roles, there are lots of opportunities in supporting roles, such as receptionist. Skills active have lots of information on different careers on their website.

Working in hairdressing

Hairdressing jobs include cutting, styling, colouring and perming as well as specialist hairdressing roles for both male and female hair.

Working in beauty

The beauty industry includes massage, waxing, piercing, facial care, consulting, and specialist makeup like wedding or fashion, reflexology and nail technician.

Working in makeup

Working in salons, TV or film, theatre or fashion, working in makeup is varied.  There are also very technical roles in things like cosmetology.

Skills needed

All of the sectors above and the job roles within them involve working directly with people and as such, you need to have very good people skills. You’ll need to be friendly and get on with people easily so that they feel comfortable.  More often than not you would have to work reception and help with ordering stock.


Everybody needs GCSEs or an equivalent in English and maths, but if you are considering being a hair technician or a career in cosmetology then science would be beneficial too.

There are plenty of routes into these careers, from traineeships all the way up to degrees but vocational qualifications are a good choice given that the jobs are all very practical.  You can search for apprenticeship opportunities in hair and beauty on the not going to uni website. To find out more and hair and beauty, visit our dedicated hair and beauty page where there are other articles and watch out for the next issue of Moving On which features an interview with Nicky Clarke.


About Lynette Daly

Lynette is the publishing editor of Moving On magazine. Moving On is devoted to helping young people make good choices for their future – education, qualifications and careers. Moving On really wants to motivate you! Our articles cover a range of topics to inspire and give ideas. Our magazines are delivered free to all schools, colleges and sixth forms in England and is also available online.

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