How Important is Creativity in Hairstyling?

Stylist applying hair dye to a client.

Are you creative? Do you help your friends style their hair? You may consider a career as a hairstylist. Creativity plays a role in hairstyling and includes personal creativity, creatively responding to client requests and problem solving. Hairstyling is an art form and your creativity is an asset to your clients.

Personal Creativity

Your creativity is a tremendous asset for client requests and problem solving. However, your hairstyling talents are not just about helping other people. Your creative skills can also help keep your work relevant and make your career more successful. It is the best way to ignite your passion for hairstyling. Now we will examine how your creative energy can be used to fuel your innovation, inspire you, guide you toward a new specialization, and increase the power of your personal marketing.

Creative Innovation

Creativity is the origin of creation and is inherent in both innovation and invention. It is a big part of what drives industry innovation in general, but it is an even bigger part of the haircare and beauty industry. Curiosity challenges us to experiment with new processes and develop new products. Sometimes we want to set trends, other times we want to solve problems. Necessity can be a powerful driving force behind what fuels your creativity toward innovation. There are many reasons to come up with something fresh and new, but all of them require some level of creative talent.

Creative Inspiration

Enthusiasm is infectious. Inspiration is contagious. The excitement you have for hair can be a source of professional motivation for you and for those around you. By cultivating your creativity properly, you will reach new levels of professional success. Clients can be boring or unpredictable, both of which come with their own unique set of challenges. It is important that you commit to fueling your creativity, connecting to the parts of the job you are inspired by.

Creative Specializations

Exercising and exploring your personal creative interests can lead you in new and unexpected directions. If you are creatively drawn to a specific part of hairstyling, you may consider expanding your profession to include a specialization. You might be interested in creating a braid design. You may have a knack for styling wigs. You may even have a passion for a specific community, such as the elderly. Following your creative passions into a new specialization can end up paying off if you are truly dedicated.

Creative Personal Marketing

We are living in an era of social media marketing and influencer endorsements. These may not seem like they play a significant role in your career, particularly if you are working out of a traditional salon. However, creatively marketing your work through various social media platforms can improve your relationship with clients and other industry professionals. You can showcase your work, build a fan following, and advertise any product or service deals to capture new clients.

It is all about striking a balance between engaging and informational viewer content. Creative personal marketing also helps if you decide to change salons. Having a client base that is dedicated to you will ensure steady work no matter where you decide to go. It is also worth acknowledging that most employers will do a social media search of any new potential hires. Having professional content on your social media profiles can help differentiate you from the rest of the pack.

Problem Solving

There are plenty of opportunities for a hairstylist to express creativity. Creative problem solving is an exceptionally important part of being a well-rounded and well-respected hairstylist. Let us take a look at some of the ways you can use your creativity to solve your professional problems.

Haircut Problem Solving

People may make haircut appointments because they need a style change or style maintenance. Although these may comprise most of your appointments, you will eventually have a client who needs your help repairing damage to their hair. Most repairs are for children who have taken the scissors into their own hands. Sometimes it is a DIY haircut that went terribly wrong. It could also be a bad haircut at the hands of an unqualified stylist that needs an experienced, qualified professional to fix it. Whatever the reason, you will need to harness your creativity in order to cut style out of the hair chaos.

Hair Color Problem Solving

Fixing hair color errors can be one of the more difficult parts of hairstyling. These errors can happen many ways and with varying degrees of severity. You may need to blend in a bad highlight misstep or fix an entirely discolored, uneven dye job. Some of the more severe cases of hair color catastrophes will require more skill and creativity to transform into a wearable hairstyle. The more technical knowledge of color mixing and matching that you have, the more creative you can be with the repair.

Style Problem Solving

Special celebrations and momentous events allow clients to look their best. Many clients go to a professional to have their hair styled for this reason. A client may be looking for a long-term style change, such as extensions or braids. They may want an updo or fancy hairstyle. Being creative can give a client a unique hairstyle that allows them to stand out during their special celebration.

Even though a client should be allowed to celebrate their own fashions and styles, there can be physical obstacles to making that happen. Differences in hair volume, texture, and growth rates can all play a part in a style setback. The more creative you are, the easier it will be to use your tools to tackle those setbacks and create a look that will have your client feeling fabulous.


Hairstyling work extends beyond the salon. Clients will seek out the advice of a certified professional when they have on-going trouble with their hair, particularly if they are familiar and comfortable with that hairstylist. Working to find a solution for your client, while also working within the boundaries of their lifestyle and budget, can be a challenge that requires creative problem solving.

Client Requests & Creativity

Part of the appeal of hairstyling is not knowing exactly what your client is going to ask for until they are sitting in your chair. They may call to make an appointment for a drastic alteration to change their look. They might call for a consultation about product and treatment recommendations. Most client requests will be easy for a certified stylist to accommodate, but there will also be the client requests that are difficult. Even the logistics of appointments can be tricky. Here are a few ways you can use your creativity to turn your client’s dreams into reality.

Length Requests

A change in length seems like a pretty easy way to change a look, but it may be more difficult than it appears to achieve. For example, you may have a client who dreams of an edgy, short haircut but is self-conscious about certain thinning or bald areas. On the other hand, you may encounter a client who dreams of long locks but has a hair growth cycle that is naturally short. Whatever the case is, you should be ready to get creative and help your clients with their hair length goals.

Color Requests

Most clients will come to you to cover gray hairs in a natural way. Others are looking for saturated color that is unique and edgy. And there are some clients who just want to dye sections or chunks of their hair. There can be challenges to coloring your client’s hair. Perhaps their hair is too weak to sustain harsh dyes or chemicals. Your client may want a drastic transition from a heavy, dark color to a light shade or hue. Hair coloration requires skill and precision under the best of circumstances. You will need to get creative if you are going to successfully and confidently take on color challenges.

Style Requests

Helping your clients achieve the hairstyle they want for their wedding, prom, photo shoot, video project or other event can be fun in a creative way. You can utilize your skills to create a style that is as memorable as the milestone itself.

Accommodation Requests

Most of the creative challenges you face as a professional stylist will be about hair. However, it is possible that you will need to creatively accommodate your clients on a more logistical level. For instance, you might have a client who wants a change in hairstyle but has trouble sitting still. You may encounter clients that have trouble with certain noises, lighting, smells, or other atmospheric stimulation. You may also have to work around equipment such as motorized wheelchairs or breathing accessories. Style and expression need to be equally available to everyone. This means any good hairstylist will get creative to give their clients the style change they need and deserve.

Final Thoughts

Hairstyling is an art form and creativity is a big part of the process. Being creative can help you please your clients and become a successful hairstylist. Creativity helps with problem solving and client requests. Creativity is an important skill that will help make every client happy. Use your innovation and inspiration for hairstyling to share your passion and creativity with the world.

Did learning about how important creativity is in hairstyling interest you? Need to get your undergraduate diploma in cosmetology? At Minnesota School of Cosmetology, we are dedicated to helping our Cosmetology program students develop a solid foundation and a flair for style through hands-on training in basic and advanced industry techniques. You will learn how to cut, color and style hair, give manicures and pedicures, provide spa treatments and perform various skin care techniques from industry-experienced instructors in a professional salon setting. We keep our class sizes small to make sure you get the individualized instruction you need and attention you deserve. You will graduate with everything you need to become a versatile artist in an exciting industry, including a cosmetology diploma from a respected college.

Contact us today to learn more about becoming a hairstylist and starting a rewarding career in the beauty industry.

What is Included in a Manicure & Pedicure?

Student practicing giving a manicure.

Interested in becoming a nail specialist or nail technician? Want to learn more about the reasons clients get a manicure or pedicure? There are many natural and mental benefits for clients from manicures and pedicures. These benefits make getting manicures and pedicures relaxing, while keeping an eye on health. In our Cosmetology program you’ll learn the skills you need to work  as a nail technician, and learn the benefits of working in the beauty industry.

What is a Manicure and Pedicure?

A manicure refers to the curation and care of a client’s hands and a pedicure refers to the curation and care of a client’s feet. This includes skincare, nail care, and artificial nail enhancements that can be customized to a variety of preferences. Let’s take a deeper look at the two main reasons for getting a manicure or a pedicure.

Reason #1: Aesthetics

The central reason for booking a manicures and pedicures appointment with a professional manicurist is to change, enhance, or maintain the look of your nails. There are many different options when it comes to personalizing the aesthetic of your fingernails and/or toenails. Here are some of the aesthetic aspects of your manicure or pedicure you can customize to your exact specifications.

Color – The color(s) of nail polish you choose to polish your nails plays a huge part in how your manicure or pedicure ends up looking. The shades and colors of nail polish available are virtually infinite, so you can feel free to pick how bright, dark, shiny, or shimmery you want your nail color choices to be.

Length – This aesthetic aspect of the manicure or pedicure varies quite a bit for both natural and artificial nails. How long you choose to wear your nails depends on several things, such as the size of your hands/feet, the length of your fingers/toes, and the health and size of your natural nail beds. The most important factor in nail length, however, is your own personal preference.

Shape – Unique or varied nail shape is primarily a characteristic of manicures more so than pedicures. There are several different choices when it comes to how you choose to shape your nails. Rounded tips, pointed tips, and blunted or squared tips are among the most common nail shapes requested. Natural nails can be shaped if they are healthy and strong enough to grow, cut and file. However, artificial nails are usually better for dramatic shaping options.

Designed Nails.

Art/Design – The sky is the limit when it comes to customizing your nail art with manicures and pedicures. It all comes down to how broad your imagination is and the talent of your nail technician. You may be someone who prefers subtle accent dots or classic stripe designs. You may dream of looking down at your nails and seeing miniature works of art.

Accessories: – Gemstones, crystal, beads, and other tiny 3-dimensional nail accessories can take the look of your nails from basic to breath-taking. These accents come in a variety of shapes and colors and can be clustered or spaced out. Even just a little bit of sparkle can go a long way in terms of elevating your manicure or pedicure.

Reason #2: Wellness

Health and wellness are also considered and addressed during a manicure or pedicure appointment. Getting your nails done certainly isn’t the same thing as seeing a medical professional for severe hand and foot issues. However, there are a number of physical and mental benefits to seeing a manicurist.

Skin – Any serious skin issues should always be addressed by a medically certified dermatologist, but a nail technician can address and advise you on many of the minor skin conditions you may be struggling with. Chronic dryness and rough patches such as callouses are just a couple of examples of skin conditions that can be addressed by a nail professional during a manicure and pedicure.

Nails – Having healthy nails is easier said than done for a lot of people. Fungus and infections must always be medically treated, but a manicurist can help you strengthen, grow, and repair your natural nails. Even if you prefer the look of artificial nails you still need to make sure that artificial nails have healthy natural nails to anchor to. This will help avoid excessive and frequent breaking.

What are the Mental Benefits of Getting a Manicure or Pedicure?

There is more to manicures and pedicures than the physical condition and the visual look of your nails. Sometimes going to the spa or salon is about taking some time out to focus on yourself. Let’s take a closer look at the internal benefits of manicures and pedicures.

Benefit #1: Self Care

Getting your nails done is all about self-care. Your mental health may not be the first thing you think of when you make your nail appointment, but there is something to be said for taking a timeout from the everyday grind to reset yourself. Manicures and pedicures are a great way to give yourself some time away from stress and pressure. Having a regularly scheduled break from your demanding life is healthy. Prioritizing yourself in an indulgent way can do wonders for your personal wellness. A manicure and pedicure can help keep you relaxed, give you a boost in confidence, and allow you to express your style and attitude in greater detail.

Benefit #2: Relaxation

A fragrant soak and a relaxing hand or foot massage can help you feel more relaxed. Indulging your extremities with this extra attention is particularly helpful if you are on your feet for long periods of time, or if your career requires a large amount of typing, handwriting, or other handwork. Pampering your hands and feet, with a manicure and pedicure, can relax your internal tension and help you relieve stress from the outside in.

Benefit #3: Confidence

Looking good is part of feeling good. When you are comfortable and happy with your overall look it can help you feel more confident as a whole. Your nails are an important part of your style and can make a difference in boosting your confidence. Make sure you know what you want and figure out your own personal nail style.

Benefit #4: Expression

Your nails make a statement to the people around you. What they say to the world depends on how you choose to have them done. Do they say that you are clean and classic? Do they convey an attitude of rebellion and edginess? Are you Avant grade and out of the ordinary? Do your nails purposefully contradict your personality? It’s all about what you want your nails to say.

What are the Benefits of Becoming a Nail Technician?

If you are someone who is naturally drawn to manicures and pedicures, you may have already considered making your interest in nail care a career. Do you want to academically and financially invest in your passion for nail care and nail design? There are a lot of positive aspects to becoming a fully trained and nail technician.

Reason #1: Interesting and Challenging Work

Being a nail technician leaves little room for boredom. The work itself may share fundamental qualities and similarities, however the specifics will vary from client to client. Here are some of the ways your professional nail work will keep you motivated and on your toes.

Lady showing off nail design.

Variety of Client Tastes and Preferences

Styles and preferences vary widely from person to person. You may have one client who wants to focus on conditioning their natural nails to maintain a more natural look and then another who wants 10-inch artificial nails with elaborately different designs on each one. Be ready to tackle any nail challenge that sits down at your station.

Different Anatomy

Nail shape, nail texture, finger/to length, nail strength and overall hand or foot size will all be factors to consider on an individual client-by-client basis. You will want to make your clients’ hands, feet and nails look, feel, and function the best that you possibly can. That means paying attention to the details of each individual customer during a manicure and pedicure.

Reason #2: Diverse Opportunities for Income

Another benefit to becoming a nail technician is the many career options you have to choose from. Where you work and how you manifest your career will all depend on the demands of your life and your level of commitment. Becoming a manicurist can give you the flexibility to create your own schedule or it can give you the stability of a predictable work environment. These are some of the most common career options for professional nail techs.

Nail Shops – Storefront nail shops are a fantastic way to get exposure to a high volume of clients for manicures and pedicures. These establishments typically have a lot of call-in and walk-in traffic which will give you a lot of practice and experience. It will also give you the chance to work with and learn from other seasoned industry professionals.

Salons/Spas – Spas and salons will often feature an area for manicures and pedicures as part of the services they offer to their clients. People who go to spas and salons are typically looking for a pampering experience, so you will likely be indulging your clients in more high-end treatments and detailed design work if this is the professional avenue you choose.

Retail – Shopping centers, certain flea markets, and fashion malls commonly feature manicure and pedicure services. These establishments usually rely on heavy foot traffic, so scheduling and preparation can be more hectic and fast-paced than it is with other nail care establishments.

Resorts/Casinos – Getaways and vacations are the perfect excuse for a little extra indulgence. Lots of people will seek out nail services and special treatments to spoil themselves while they’re on holiday. Manicures and pedicures are included in these indulgences. If you decide that a resort or casino is the right place to start your career, you will probably want to prepare for a lot of nail care first-timers and frequently changing faces.

Final Thoughts

The accessibility of celebrity and recognition through social media platforms has transformed the beauty industry across the board. Nail care is no exception. You can transform your passion and talent into a career through online tutorials, endorsements, and even entertainment. It all depends on your vision and your ambition.

Did this discussion about manicures and pedicures interest you in becoming a nail technician? Your search for a nail technician program ends at Minnesota School of Cosmetology, where you learn all the tricks of the trade to provide the look and TLC clients are looking for as part of our Cosmetology Program. Our campus locations are convenient, if you are looking for beauty schools that can train you to become a nail technician. You will graduate with a firm understanding of the anatomy of the nails and the skills to perform a variety of nail services, including manicures, pedicures, gel polish applications and nail art.

Both campuses feature salon-grade pedicure chairs and manicure stations where you will get to perfect your skills in a professional salon setting. If you are looking to become a nail technician, you can gain valuable, real-world experience you graduate working with products used in many salons across the country.

Contact us today to learn more about becoming a nail technician and starting a rewarding career in the beauty industry.

Are Hairstylists in Demand?

Hairstylists in salon chairs.

Just graduated from high school or contemplating a career change into cosmetology? It can be exciting when you decide to take the plunge. The beauty industry is innovative and resilient, but you may still have some questions and apprehensions about becoming a hairstylist. Are you wondering if it is a good idea to begin your transition into a new career field? Interested in what the learning process might look like, how long it will take, or if you are cut out to be a hairstylist at all? Let’s take a look at some of the most common questions about becoming a hairstylist.

Are Hairstylists in Demand?

The demand for hairstylists and barbers is growing. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the market is projected to grow 8% from 2018 to 2028.  The constant innovation and continued evolution of cosmetology and beauty have opened a lot of doors within the industry to have a successful career in hair. The only thing holding you back from achieving your goal of beginning your exciting new career in hair is the right training, the proper license, and the ambition to succeed.

What is the Education Commitment for a Career as a Hairstylist?

The education you will need to become a licensed hairstylist is not nearly as big of a time commitment as many other career options. Where other career fields require a traditional college degree that can take up to 4 years to complete, becoming a fully licensed hairstylist can happen in less than a year. For your best chance at success you will want to fully research all of your education options before making a decision. Finding a program that fits your lifestyle is important. Also, working with experienced industry instructors will help with the transition to a career as a hairstylist.

What Kind of Jobs are Available?

You may think that the term “hairstylist” means only one thing. However, a hairstylist is actually an umbrella term for a lot of different cosmetology professions. Hairstyling can have a lot of different focuses depending on the hairstylist in question. Let’s take a look at some of the areas of beauty a licensed hairstylist might choose to focus their career on.


Cutting hair is probably the most common association with being a hairstylist. This is the part of the process where scissors, clippers, and razors are used to tailor and shape hair. Any good hairstylist can cut hair into a variety of customizable styles. You will need to know how to deal with many hair textures, lengths, and head shapes in order to help your customers achieve the looks they want.


A colorist is a hairstylist who specializes in using a combination of chemicals and hair coloring to change the color of a client’s hair. This can include subtle, well-blended highlights and gray coverage to extremely saturated color streaks and ombré color transitions. The sky is the limit when it comes to creative hair color possibilities. It all depends on your client’s personal aesthetic style preferences and the condition of the hair they want to color. This subsection of hairstyling requires a lot of attention to detail and precision.


There are a lot of different reasons that a client might seek a professional hairstylist to help style their hair. They may have a special event, wedding or prom that they want to look special for. The client may want assistance with a long-term hairstyle, such as braids or dreadlocks. You may be called on to help create looks for television and photo shoots. Whatever the exact task may be, this type of stylist has a primarily focused on the physical manipulation of the hair itself. This can involve heat treatments including curling and straightening, twisting, and pinning hair into a certain style. It can also include chemical styling changes that alter the overall texture of the hair, such as perming and relaxing hair.

Synthetic Hair Work

Synthetic hair is becoming a very popular option for clients who want to drastically change their looks quickly or frequently. Hairstylists are becoming more interested in and aware of synthetic hair options. The kind of synthetic hair a client wants depends on how permanent or temporary they want their hairstyle changes to be. Wigs and extensions can be different lengths, textures and colors. This gives a client unlimited amounts of looks to choose from. Extensions (sometimes also referred to as weaves) can range from temporary clip-in options that are easily changed and removed to more permanent options that are glued or sewn into the client’s natural hair. If you want to focus on synthetic hair, it is important that you instruct your clients on the proper ways to secure, care for, and wear artificial hair.


Social media probably isn’t something that that is immediately associate with the hairstyling profession, but online opportunities to make a career in cosmetology are growing. Creative influencers can now make careers based on their passion for hair styling and creativity. These careers are financially facilitated through advertisements and product endorsements. These Internet based beauty career paths can be risky and require a lot of dedicated commitment to get started, but they are also lucrative and extremely rewarding for those who are able to use their creativity to make a name in the industry.


Using education to teach others is a fantastic way to put your skills, talents, and knowledge to use helping others achieve their goals. You may want to take the traditional route of educating people through the licensing process in the same way that you were. You may also consider setting up online tutorials for people at home who want to better their haircare or learn new styles. Being a licensed hairstylist gives you a credibility in online education that is often lacking in beauty tutorials. A license could help set you apart from amateur enthusiasts by giving you an authority they don’t have within the industry.

What Kind of Skills are Needed to be a Successful Hairstylist?

Along with the skills learned during professional education there are certain social skills that are important when working as a hairstylist. Here are a few of the people skills you will want to strengthen and/or develop.

Good Listening Skills

Being a good listener is important in almost every professional field, but it is especially important in beauty professions. When a client wants a change in their hairstyle it is important that you understand the look they are going for so that you can help the client find the best way to achieve their goal. It can be tempting to tune people out or to focus on what you want to say while someone else is speaking, but it is important that you actively pay attention to what your clients are saying when you are speaking. This will allow you to fully understand the client’s vision and give them the opportunity to clarify anything they don’t understand. Active, engaged listening throughout the appointment will also help you make sure that you don’t miss anything the client may change their mind about. Even if you decide that you want a hair career that is more remote or based online, it is important that you are able to communicate with and listen to your audience.


Being arrogant can make clients uneasy but being confident can help put them at ease. Being confident and self-assured can be easier said than done. For naturally anxious or socially awkward people, confidence can be difficult to come by even if you are the most talented hairstylist on the planet. Preparation is key for those who need a little help in the confidence department. You should practice a few standard questions to get the ball rolling at the beginning of the appointment. What products do you use at home? What is your home maintenance regimen? When was your last haircut, chemical service? These verbal skills can help build confidence.

If you are worried about how you will be received online or on social media, you can always research other successful online hair professionals for tips and tricks. A great way to help boost confidence and put professional anxieties at ease is to practice hairstyling skills until they become almost instinctive.


Keeping a schedule, ordering supplies and maintaining a professional space are all areas that require a certain amount of organization. Being prepared and aware can keep even challenging days from becoming chaotic, so it is important that you are professionally organized even if your personal lifestyle is a bit more cluttered. By organizing appointments, prioritizing tasks, and preparing equipment and supplies you can avoid unnecessary schedule interruptions and quickly fix any mishaps that may occur throughout the day without the added stress of disorganization.

Final Thoughts

Becoming a hairstylist is a career choice that provides a lot of different professional opportunities that fit a variety of personal preferences and lifestyles. So even if one particular professional door closes, there is a good chance that other options and avenues will open up. Hairstyling has a long history of expression and evolution. That isn’t going stop any time soon. Getting an education and taking that step toward your career goals will help you make being a hairstylist a part of the industry’s history and its transitions into the future.

Did learning about the demand for hairstylists interest you? Need to get your undergraduate certificate in cosmetology? At Minnesota School of Cosmetology, we are dedicated to helping our Cosmetology program students develop a solid foundation and a flair for style through hands-on training in basic and advanced industry techniques. You will learn how to cut, color and style hair, give manicures and pedicures, provide spa treatments and perform various skin care techniques from industry-experienced instructors in a professional salon setting. We keep our class sizes small to make sure you get the individualized instruction you need and attention you deserve. You will graduate with everything you need to be a versatile artist in an exciting industry, including a cosmetology diploma from a respected college.

Contact us today to learn more about becoming a hairstylist and starting a rewarding career in the beauty industry.

What Kind of Services Do Cosmetologists Provide for Prom?

Kids at Prom

Prom season is upon us. Fun and fashion collide to make this night truly magical. Your client’s night will likely be filled with moments they will think of for years to come. They may even be lucky enough to come away from their prom with nostalgic memories they will look back on fondly for a lifetime. With such a fun event on the horizon your client might be struggling with how to make the most of it. They know how they want to look, they know how they want to feel, but making those things a reality might be easier said than done. That is why you may want to think about all of the different ways you can help your client get ready for their special night. Let’s take a look at the many different ways a cosmetologist can help their clients prepare, then you can decide which ones apply to your client’s personality and style.

Hair Services for Prom

Your client’s hair can be a big part of their prom night look, not to mention that their hair will be in every one of their many prom pictures. Let’s take a look at some of the ways that a professionally trained cosmetologist can help a client elevate their look from amateur to exceptional.

Hair Styling for Prom

This is probably what the average prom-goer has in mind when they think of “getting their hair done for prom.” Styling refers to the curling, straightening, twisting, braiding, pinning, and otherwise manipulating of a person’s hair into a wide variety of styles and looks. This can be done using a variety of different tools and products to help achieve and secure a look. Curling irons, hair straighteners, sprays, pins, and barrettes can all be part of what gets your client’s hair to prom-going perfection. You may also choose to include hair fashion accessories such as a tiara or hair charms to add an extra special dazzle to your client’s look. Even if your client is comfortable styling their own hair, getting it professionally done can be the difference between hair on an average day and a style fit for a special event.

Hair Cutting for Prom

Cutting your client’s hair for prom might seem like a drastic step for one night. However, if your client is someone that likes to make a strong visual statement and they don’t mind taking a big leap, a vastly different cut will be sure to turn heads and have cameras flashing. This is a particularly good choice for those who are comfortable with change. On the other hand, if your client is someone who gets anxious about big changes to their hair, or if they really love their current style, you might want to consider a touch-up or a trim. Cleaning up their look before they hit the dance floor can make a bigger difference than they might realize.

Hair Extensions for Prom

Getting extensions means different things for different people. People have different kinds of hair and different style needs. Some extensions can be clipped in and be easily removed at the end of the night. However, they are less secure than extensions that are glued or sewn in. Those options are harder to remove than the clip in options and would be more permanent than just prom night.

Hair Coloring for Prom

Changing the color of your client’s hair is an exciting style step at any point, but it is made even more dramatic and exciting when you coordinate that change with such a special event. Unveiling a newly lightened, darkened, or colored hairstyle at prom can be a great way to stand out. It can also subtly elevate your client’s look, if drastic change isn’t exactly their thing. You may also want to consider temporary dyes that coordinate with their outfit. Finding a quality temporary dye that won’t damage your client’s hair or transfer onto their clothes or skin, however, can be difficult.

Makeup Services for Prom

Makeup is something that many prom-goers are already intimately familiar with. Your client may be wondering if seeing a professional makeup artist is really worth it, particularly if they are someone who has a passion for facial cosmetics already. The experience, tools, products and techniques that come with professionally done makeup can make a much bigger difference than your client might think. Here are some of the ways you can take your client’s look everyday-amazing to magazine-cover quality.

Classic Coverage

Makeup doesn’t always have to be thick or obvious. If your client likes to have a more natural look, they can simply ask you to keep things simple. Rather than bold colors and thick lines they can ask for even tones and natural shades. The benefit of going to you as a cosmetologist to get their natural beauty touched up before prom is that you are trained to perfectly blend and match colors to give them a truly flawless finish.

A Little Bit Daring

You may be excited about the idea of stepping a little bit outside your client’s comfort zone this prom season. If they comfortable with experimenting with their look, now might be the perfect time for you to try something thrilling and new. Ask them to use an exotic lip color. See if they are interested in trying a flashy eye color combination or an unusual liner. You may even want to give some unique false lashes a try for your client.

Living on the Wilder Side

It could be that you are the kind of person who sees a formal event like prom as a fashion and style challenge. Perhaps your client likes to take big fashion risks and enormous style statements whenever the opportunity arises. If this sounds like your client, then you are going to want to seize this opportunity to make your mark by discussing more edgy, trendy, extravagant options with their makeup. Your options for individualizing their prom night look are endless, so feel free to let loose and go wild with your makeup style.

Nail Services for Prom

Manicures and pedicures are another common component of prom night. Your client wants to look good from top to bottom, which means fingers and toes, too. Don’t let jagged nails, damaged hands, or weathered feet derail your client’s fantastic look.

Natural Nails for Prom

People sometimes assume that nail technicians only work with people who want to get or maintain artificial nails. In actuality, they offer a lot of services to people who want to keep and/or grow out their natural nails, including all kinds of painting and polishing options to make a special night even more glamorous. If your client is someone who likes to keep their fingers and toes more naturally manicured, try nail strengthening and skin conditioning treatments along with a professional polish job.

Artificial Nails for Prom

The options in this department are infinite. It all depends on your client’s aesthetic preferences, their lifestyle demands, and their outfit for the special night. It helps to have a few things decided before you go in, even if you don’t quite have everything decided. That way you don’t feel like you are wasting your client’s appointment time. Do they want long nails? Short nails? Square tips? Pointed nails? French tips? Do they want a polish color? Any glitter? Do they want a pattern with multiple colors, or just one? Are they hoping to match their nails to their outfit? Do they want to match their nails to their eyeshadow or lip color? These are all things to consider so that you can get any color references they may need to match. Getting artificial nails can really help polish the edges of your client’s prom night look while helping you tie it all together.

Extreme Length, Color, And Design

If your client is someone who already indulges in routine manicures and pedicures, they might be looking at this special event as an opportunity to take their nail fame to the next level. This can be done in several ways. The first of which is by choosing an extreme color. Rather than perfectly coordinating your client’s nail color with their prom outfit you might want to choose an opposing color to make them stand out. You may also want to consider something like a bright neon shade that will really draw attention to the detail in the nails. You might choose to highlight their manicure/pedicure fashion by deciding on an extreme length for their nails. Choosing to have long nails will help make their cosmetic choice more visibly noticeable and allows more room for detail and design. You can always suggest that they be trimmed back at a later appointment after prom is over. The exact length you and your client decide on will vary based on the size of their hands and the length of their fingers. Nail artistry and jewel design are a couple of other ways to take your client’s nails into head-turning territory. The sparkle of a rhinestone, the detail of a tiny pained picture, and color layering techniques can all be enough to stop the show with a simple waive of the hand. All of these are ways to keep your client’s nail style fresh and exciting for their special night.

Spa and Skin Treatment Services for Prom

Getting a spa treatment isn’t always something that people associate with prom season. It might not be the most common thought, but spa treatments can be a significant part of a successful prom night. There are a couple of different considerations when deciding which spa treatments will help your client get ready to wow their friends and family.

Feeling Good

Arguably the main reason people visit the spa is for relaxation. Prioritizing body comfort before posing for pictures and dancing the night away may not be such a bad idea. If your client is someone who is active or athletic, they may want to consider a specialty steam or soak. You can also indulge them in a hand or food massage. Any cosmetologist who specializes in skincare, would be able to walk a client through relaxing soak, wrap, and steam treatment options to help them decide on the right ones for their body and lifestyle.

Looking Good

Spa and skin treatments can also be beneficial when it comes to how your client’s skin looks when prom night rolls around. Getting a facial can help firm and clear a client’s skin to facilitate a healthy glow. Their radiant skin will help make every smile in each photo a little brighter and will accentuate their naturally fabulous face. You may also offer facial and/or body hair wax treatments before prom. This can make skin smoother and give clean edges to their lines and features.

Did learning about what kind of services cosmetologists provide for prom interest you? Need to get your undergraduate certificate in cosmetology? At Minnesota School of Cosmetology, we are dedicated to helping our Cosmetology program students develop a solid foundation and a flair for style through hands-on training in basic and advanced industry techniques. You will learn how to cut, color and style hair, give manicures and pedicures, provide spa treatments and perform various skin care techniques from industry-experienced instructors in a professional salon setting. We keep our class sizes small to make sure you get the individualized instruction you need and attention you deserve. You will graduate with everything you need to be a versatile artist in an exciting industry, including a cosmetology diploma from a respected college.

Contact us today to learn more about becoming a hairstylist and starting a rewarding career in the beauty industry.

What are the Benefits of a Chair Massage?

Workings getting a neck massage.

Massage offers scientifically proven relief from stress and chronic pain. Used worldwide as an adjunct treatment for a wide range of health-related needs, millions of Americans receive massages, but so many more could benefit if only it were more accessible. The good news is, for clients who want a massage but can’t get away from home or work for the full table version, massage therapists are taking chair massage on the road, and it’s been a tremendous success.

What is Chair Massage Therapy?

Chair massage is similar to table massage in most ways, except that instead of laying on a table, clients kneel in a specialized chair equipped with a pad and face cradle to support their head and chest. Most chairs come with extendable armrests for enhanced upper bodywork, and they’re fully adjustable for height and comfort.

The origins of chair massage aren’t exactly straightforward, as many techniques and equipment designs were arguably early versions of the practice. However, it was most notably and definitively established in 1968 by David Palmer. The goal of using a chair during massage was to increase the client’s relaxation and allow them to remain somewhat upright and aligned in the seated position. This method also allowed for a more of a public atmosphere during the massage itself. Privacy is required in other forms of massage because items of clothing are typically removed to create accessibility to certain areas of the body. Since chair massage deals primarily with the upper extremities and limbs of the body the client’s clothes always stay on.

How is a Chair Massage Performed?

A professional chair massage is performed with the same care and precautions as the full table version. Massage therapists ask clients about their goals and physical limitations. After a brief discussion, they’re seated face-forward in the chair, and adjustments are made for comfort.

Massaging generally begins with the large muscle groups in the upper back and radiates toward the lower back, shoulders, neck and arms. Because large muscle groups support the smaller muscles that are often the sites of pain, it’s an ideal technique. Massage therapists may recommend different types of massages based on a client’s physical responses, and what they believe would feel best.

While full-body table massages last from 30 minutes to an hour or more, most upper body chair massages require only 10–20 minutes, duration may vary based on need. When the massage is complete, the equipment is sanitized and prepared for the next client.

Where are Chair Massages Performed?

Chair massages can be performed anywhere the equipment fits including:

  • Offices
  • Shopping malls
  • Casinos
  • Conference centers
  • Day spas
  • Colleges
  • Hair salons
  • Libraries
  • Private homes
  • Health clubs

Benefits of Chair Massage

Adverse physical effects such as muscle tension, tissue binding, and muscular knotting can lead to headaches and joint discomfort. The damage, if left untreated, can cause long term effects. Prioritizing comfort and general health are a vital part of maintaining a high quality of life.

The chair massages is limited to the upper body, however the benefits are similar to full-body table versions and include stress reduction, enhanced circulation, increases physical flexibility, a more vibrant immune system, pain relief, deeper sleep, improved athletic performance, a brighter mood, and better chronic disease management.

Benefit #1: Stress Reduction

Research consistently shows that massages relieve stress. Just a single session has been shown to reduce high levels of fight-or-flight hormones while releasing the natural endorphins that improve mood and promote feelings of calm. Periodic massage sessions can help reduce stress on a continued basis. Many offices offer chair massage for this very reason.

Benefit #2: Enhanced Circulation

Massage stimulates the flow of both blood and lymphatic fluid. Massage improves vascular function almost as well as exercise. Because blood carries oxygen and vital nutrients, circulation nourishes the entire body, including the brain. Science shows a direct correlation between circulation and cognition. Early analyses suggest massage could help stave off some forms of cognitive decline. With the increase in the Baby Boomer population chair massage can help older clients reduce cognitive decline.

Benefit #3: Increases Physical Flexibility

The looser muscles and joints are, the easier it will be for someone to move them. Unbinding muscles and tissues through chair massage can help increase range of motion and freedom of movement. The tighter muscles are, the harder they will be to move and articulate.

Benefit #4: A More Vibrant Immune System

Massage improves immune function by boosting the production of the white blood cells responsible for fighting off infection. Although there are no large studies to suggest massage can affect cancer, these “natural killer cells” play a role in immune function and could help immunocompromised patients stay healthier.

Benefit #5: Pain Relief

More doctors are prescribing massage to help manage both chronic and acute pain. It can ease the daily discomfort caused by conditions such as fibromyalgia and arthritis, and it’s also been shown to reduce pain from musculoskeletal injuries from tennis elbow to sprains.

Massage has shown to decrease the symptom severity of conditions such as knee tendinitis and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. In many cases, the effects are as successful as other interventions, including anti-inflammatory medications and surgery. Because it’s low-risk and non-invasive, it also eliminates the worry of complications. Many patients who’ve tried massages for pain relief say they’re mostly effective, and most plan to continue.

Benefit #6: Deeper Sleep

Massages can relieve a broad range of conditions associated with poor sleep, such as anxiety, depression, pregnancy and chronic pain. When scheduled before bedtime, they can induce relaxation, but even day sessions help by improving circulation and increasing levels of serotonin, a hormone that helps regulate sleep.

Benefit #7: Improved Athletic Performance

In addition to helping athletes recover faster from injury, massage also appears to improve strength in muscles damaged by overuse and reduces the incidence of chronic muscle spasm.

Regular athletes benefit from massage after injuries to speed recovery, while performance athletes use it to gain a competitive edge. While not everyone is training for the Olympics, it could be an easy way for a weekend tennis player to strengthen a weak forehand.

Benefit #8: A Brighter Mood

Massage has a direct impact on the brain chemicals that regulate mood by lowering stress hormones, like cortisol, while boosting feel-good neurotransmitters including, serotonin, oxytocin and dopamine. The result is a feeling of well-being and sharper mental focus.

Benefit #9: Better Chronic Disease Management

Massage has far-reaching effects shown to benefit those with chronic disease. As a complementary therapy, it can mitigate the symptoms of conditions from diabetes to hypertension. While not a substitute for medication, a single massage can lower blood pressure readings for up to 72 hours.

Offering Chair Massages Versus Table Massages

Massage therapists looking to start or expand their practice should look no further than chair massages. Why? Chair massage requires less space, the equipment is portable, business costs are lower, and revenue possibilities are numerous.

They Requires Less Space

Massage chairs require about 30-percent less space than standard tables, and because massages are done with clients fully clothed, they eliminate the need for privacy and spaces in which to dress and undress. Further, chair massage can happen while someone is sitting in an office chair or at a casino poker table.

Business Costs are Lower

Having a permanent office can help a massage therapist build a more extensive practice, but it also means paying rent and associated costs such as insurance and advertising, something new graduates may struggle to afford.

Most clients receiving table massages also expect a restful, aesthetically pleasant environment and costly spa-like amenities that make it tough for first-time massage therapists to get a start while competing with established businesses.

Many new massage therapists will work at a spa or resort, leaving the cost of the equipment to the business they work for, allowing them to get experience before going off on their own to work with clients directly.

Revenue Possibilities are Numerous

A massage therapist’s income depends on the number of clients they serve, and there’s no better way to maximize potential than by offering chair massage. And because it doesn’t take as much time out of a busy day, clients are more likely to take the time to have chair massages, turning occasional clients into regulars and ensuring a consistent revenue stream. Unlike table massages that need to be scheduled days or weeks in advance, chair massages can be given virtually on demand.

Since 10- to 20-minute massages cost less than hour-long sessions, the service is financially fiscal. Massage therapists are less likely to lose business when there’s a downturn in the economy.

Final Thoughts

Stress is an epidemic, and massage is among the best ways to limit its effects. Once available only through luxury spas, chair massages are bringing this critical therapy to the masses. It’s a boon for 21st century health and an excellent way for massage therapists to do business.

Want to Learn More?

Did this information about the benefits of chair massage interest you? If you are interested in the healing powers of massage, you can begin your career in massage therapy at Minnesota School of Cosmetology. Our short-term massage therapy training program is designed to be completed in as little as 5 months with full time enrollment*. Our massage therapy training program is designed as a holistic program that will prepare students to focus on body mechanics of their clients as well as develop positive habits for the therapist. Together, those two areas will provide a foundation that can lead to longevity in the career field.

Contact us today to learn more about becoming a massage therapist and starting a rewarding career in the massage industry.

*Completion time for this program is defined by 35 hours per week.

Instructor Appointed to MN Board of Cosmetology

Written by Lindsay Cooley

Recently, Minnesota School of Cosmetology instructor, Donna Dungy, was appointed to the Minnesota Board of Cosmetology.  Everyone at our school is proud of Donna’s accomplishments.  Here is a little more about her and her journey in the cosmetology field.

About Donna Dungy: Cosmetology instructor and so much more

Donna Dungy has been in the cosmetology industry for over thirty years as a cosmetologist, salon owner, instructor, and was most recently appointed the newest board member with the Minnesota Board of Cosmetology as the Private School Instructor Member.  The Minnesota Board of Cosmetology feels that Donna Dungy offers an expertise and perspective that will add great value for the Board, licensees, and the public.  She has been an instructor at the Minnesota School of Cosmetology for 13 years!  We have been lucky to have her and her giving heart in our “family” for so long.  While Donna is an instructor at the school, she continues to work at Blessings Salon in St. Paul, MN also.  She has worked at Blessings Salon for over 13 years a stylist.

Donna Dungy, center, recently named to the MN Board of Cosmetology
Donna Dungy, center, recently named to the MN Board of Cosmetology


Giving Back

Donna has a fierce passion for supporting students and giving them the best education possible.  Donna truly believes that continuous education is key in the cosmetology industry.  She also has a huge heart and loves to give back in any way she can.  Not only is Donna there for the students, to help them when needed, but she also gives back to the community.


Donna and the Minnesota School of Cosmetology have been part of the Shriners Hospital Prom since the beginning, in 2010.  She puts in time and effort each year to organize a group of our students to do free hair styles, nails, and makeup for the prom attendees.  The students always love doing this event, to be able to put a smile on the faces of the patients attending prom, by making them feel beautiful and special!


It is apparent how important it is to Donna to be the best instructor she can be.  She gives her all to the students every day she is teaching.  Donna challenges them positively, in order to provide opportunities for growth in their education.  She has been called a “spitfire” because of her high energy and passion that she brings to the students’ education.  Donna does what it takes to help prepare the Minneosta School of Cosmetology students for the real world and stay on track to graduate and be as successful as they can be!  Thanks to Miss Donna for all of her hard work and dedication at our school, students and the cosmetology industry!


Donna along with son, Alon, and husband, Linden.
Donna along with son, Alon, and husband, Linden.

Stylist Tip: 3 Easy Steps to an Audrey Hepburn Look

Stylist Tip: Classic Hollywood

At the Minnesota School of Cosmetology, our students and stylists are always providing stylist tips to their clients.  For that classic old Hollywood look, there is no better icon than Audrey Hepburn.  Try the three easy steps below to give yourself that classic look!  If you’re a stylist, this is a great cheat sheet to have the next time one of your clients wants to try something different.

Iconic Hair

Audrey loved to keep her hair off her neck to help elongate her features.  Try a simple French twist with a slight bouffant.  Or a classic, neat bun high on the head, like she sported in the late 1970s.  Another go-to look for Audrey was wearing headscarves (she even wore one at her wedding in 1969!).  But her most famous look that she sported was the pixie cut in the 1950s. It takes bravery and confidence to achieve the pixie cut but definitely a look worth trying.  Look for pixie cuts that will accentuate your facial features or ask your hairstylist.

Cat Eyes

Audrey’s makeup was simple just like her outfits. She loved to use a beige eyeshadow along with a soft brown or black charcoal liner to draw her famous cat eyes on both her top and bottom lids. Then finishing with a dark grey eyeshadow and a coat of mascara.

Simply Chic

Dress in a simple all black/neutral look. Clean lines will make you look tall and elegant. Since Audrey was already tall, she chose to wear flats (preferably in black!). Stick to simply accessories that help emphasize the neck like scarves or a pearl necklace. And a pair of large, dark sunglasses is also a must, as Audrey often sported a pair on hot days.


Classic up do with a twist.
Take the classic up do and give it a modern twist.

For more information about becoming a cosmetologist or to schedule services, please visit the Minnesota School of Cosmetology website.  Minnesota School of Cosmetology has two locations: Plymouth and Woodbury.  The school offers a cosmetology diploma as well as a massage therapy certificate.

Week 1: What Happens in our Massage Therapy Short-term Certificate Program?


When people hear “short-term certificate,” it is not always clear if everyone is talking about the same thing.  The massage therapy certificate program at Minnesota School of Cosmetology is a 5-month program designed to get students trained in the skills needed to practice massage therapy.


Recently, our current class completed their first week of courses.  Our massage therapy program chairs at our Woodbury and Plymouth campuses, Denise Radcliffe and Diana Oberg, gave some insight into what our students were already doing by the end of week one.


What was the class able to start doing during week 1?


We started learning about the body- body systems, bones, endangerment sites, and how it all relates to massage.  It is very important that students begin to get an understanding of the language of the body.  We also worked on how to communicate through touch.  This is key to a massage therapist’s profession.


We spent some time on what qualities it takes to be a massage therapist and the professionalism and presentation of self.  It is very important they learn how to allow yourself to be mindful and to understand the sacred space of the table and creating a safe environment for them and their clients.  We go over the importance of proper draping.  This is key to creating a safe space and boundaries for the client.


Of course, we began learning the “chi dance” or body mechanics and utilizing your core for power.  We also started learning how to perform the first couple of massage strokes.  This allowed them to practice their mechanics at the table.

Vertebrae location
Students use stickers to identify the location of different parts of the vertebrae.

How is what they are learning in week 1 important to the rest of their training and career?


These foundational skills are critical to moving forward in the program and in being successful as a therapist. We talked a lot about how massage is an art form and how we are a complementary medicine. If they can grasp and solidify these foundational skills they will be set up to build from there.


We talk a lot about taking care of our bodies so they can perform for years to come. Most people do not know how strenuous it is to be a massage therapist. It is important to know how everything works together.  Knowing the endangerment sites helps to ensure they will safely massage each other and their clients.  We also integrate and talk about the holistic picture of what they are leaning and how it relates to their success.

Muscle fiber direction
Students draw the direction that the facial and neck muscle fibers run on a fellow student.

How do you feel week 1 went for you and your students?


Denise Radcliffe (Woodbury): “I love having them day after day.  They are living in the massage paradigm and getting to see what it takes to do massage day after day.  The total immersion of their learning is accelerating their proficiency.  One of the students commented they appreciated learning about the level of professionalism in massage therapy.”


Diana Oberg (Plymouth): “I feel like things went amazingly well.  The students have bonded and are working so well together.  They are eager to learn and have great questions (and a lot of them)! One student stated that she loves the day-long format because it is like going to a job every day and teaches them what a day could be like as a massage therapist.”


Find out more about the short-term certificate program


If you see yourself fitting into a classroom and program like this one, check out our massage therapy program at Minnesota School of Cosmetology.  We have two locations in Plymouth and Woodbury.  Next set of massage classes starts on April 2nd so set up a time today to find out more.


Contact the Plymouth campus at: 763.404.4800


Contact the Woodbury campus at: 651.287.2180


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