What is the Difference Between Cosmetology and Esthiology?

Instructor teaching a student the difference between cosmetology and esthiology.

There are many differences and similarities between cosmetology and esthiology. A diploma can be obtained for cosmetology in 10 months at a vocational school, 5 months for esthiology. Both people may work in a spa, salon or resort, however while a cosmetologist can become an esthetician with additional training, an esthetician is not trained to perform cosmetology services. Esthiology is a branch of cosmetology focused specially on skin care. But before we look at the differences between cosmetology and esthiology, let’s look into what each of these professions entail.

What is Cosmetology?

Cosmetology is the study and application of beauty products for the hair, skin and nails specifically. Cosmetologists are responsible for the beautification of their clients. They use hairstyling, makeup and nail art to improve a client’s confidence and self-esteem.


Cosmetologists are responsible for cutting, styling, coloring, foiling and texturizing hair. They learn different hair cutting techniques including fades, bobs, pompadours, updos and razor cuts. Regular haircuts are important to prevent hair damage, reduce split ends, and create thicker, heathier hair. Cosmetologist learn how to use hair appliances like flat irons, clippers and trimmers and advanced techniques like extensions, sew-ins and weaves. They also learn different braiding techniques, specialty perm wraps and chemical texture services.


Cosmetologists are taught proper make-up techniques for daily and special occasions, runway and photo shoots. Cosmetologists learn the proper way to apply foundation, concealer, bronzer, eyeliner, mascara, and lipstick. With these skills, cosmetologist can improve the facial features of their clients and offer an overall beautification of body and soul.

Nail Care

Cosmetologists provide manicures and pedicures to clients to keep nails strong and healthy. They will learn about nail structures and growth, nail disorders and diseases and how to provide salon-grade nail care and art.

What Does a Cosmetologist Do?

Cosmetologists provide haircuts, hair styling, hair coloring, makeup, nail care and other beauty services. Cosmetologists:

  • Analyze hair, skin, and scalp to recommend beauty treatment
  • Provide facial treatment and makeup analysis
  • Wash, color, lighten, and condition hair
  • Can provide manicures, pedicures and acrylics
  • Cut, dry, and style hair
  • Style and clean wigs
  • Manage billing and electronic record keeping
  • Recommend hair care products to customers
  • Clean and disinfect all tools and work area

What is Esthiology?

Esthiology is the practice of skin care. This includes facials, skin treatments, makeup application, and waxing for hair removal. Some specialties of esthiology include microdermabrasion, permanent makeup, chemical resurfacing, and electroloysis.


A facial is a process that uses creams and cleansers to help clean, exfoliate, nourish and hydrate a person’s skin. This is part of a larger skincare process and can include some complexion components. Facials can involve steam, facial masks, peels and massage.

Skin Treatment

Skin treatments deal with keeping skin smooth, firm and evenly toned. These skin treatments include skin solutions such as chemical peels, laser treatments, light therapies, heat-based options, and injection treatments.


Clients may seek out a specified makeup artist for makeup assistance. However, there a lot of people who prefer to get makeup advice from estheticians because they want to keep their skin healthy and free of damage.

Hair Removal

Getting rid of unwanted hair is an important part of Esthiology. Waxing and threading are two ways an esthetician can remove hair from a client’s body. Hair can be removed by shaving, but this type of hair removal is less permanent.  Laser, sonic and thermal treatments are also hair removal solutions, but they require specialized equipment and training.

What Does an Esthetician Do?

An esthetician is a skincare professional concerned with the appearance and health of a client’s skin. They can give skincare routine and product advice, as well as administer different skin treatments. An esthetician can perform conditioning skin treatments, face and body hair removal, facials, chemical peels, and technical skin treatments.

While esthiology is focused on the beautification of the skin, it should not be mistaken for dermatology. Dermatology is the medical field that focuses on skin health. Working in this field requires many years of college education that allows a dermatologist to diagnose and treat skin diseases and conditions. Dermatology should not be confused with the cosmetic field of esthiology, which focuses more heavily on helping clients with the beautification of their skin. Esthiology focuses on skin treatments and products that deal with issues such as discoloration of the skin, wrinkles, uneven skin texture, and skin firmness.

What is the Difference Between Cosmetology and Esthiology?

This is a common question asked by new students interested in a beauty and wellness career. While a cosmetologist can sometimes become an esthetician, an esthetician is not trained to perform most cosmetology services. Cosmetologists are trained to help with hair, nails, skin, and makeup. They would help with minor skin health needs and could give facials and have knowledge of makeup’s affect on the skin. Cosmetologists can specialize as a hairstylist, manicurist, make-up artist or other beautification specialist. An esthetician are experts at facials, skin maintenance services and receive a more advanced curriculum of skincare training than a cosmetologist would.

Cosmetologist can beautify a client’s body including hair, face, and nails, whereas the esthetician focuses on the health and beauty of the skin itself. A client would go to a cosmetologist to get a make-over, new hairstyle or pedicure, while a client would see an esthetician if they have skin maintenance issues. These skin maintenance services focus on wrinkles, age spots, dark marks, tone fading, skin softness, and hydration to name a few.

Final Thoughts

The programs at Minnesota School of Cosmetology offer both cosmetology and esthiology specializations. If you are ready to start earning and want a new career, becoming a cosmetologist or esthetician is a great way to learn the techniques that improve a client’s beauty and wellness.

Cosmetology Program

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.

Esthiology Program

Our Esthiology Diploma Program is designed to be completed in under 5 months (600 clock hours) with full-time enrollment.  Our Esthiology Diploma Program has been developed by talented, caring, real-world professionals, many of whom still work in the field.

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

How Do I Get Started in Cosmetology?

Smiling cosmetologists holding tools necessary to getting their career started

Interested in cosmetology but don’t know how to get started? The first decision you will need to make on your journey to becoming a successful cosmetologist is choosing a field to work in. Then you will want to get an education. Next you will fuel your creativity. Lastly, it is time to begin and expand your cosmetology career. Reading through this evolution will help you understand if you are ready to start down the path to becoming a cosmetologist.

What are the Different Areas of Cosmetology?

The word “cosmetology” covers several different areas of the aesthetic and beautification industry. They include hair, makeup and nail care. Let’s take a look at the main areas of cosmetology that might inspire you.


Hairstyling is a field with a lot of diverse opportunities. Typically, hairstyling careers are thought of as strictly cut and color in salons. These careers are popular options for stylists (particularly in the early stages of their careers), but they are far from the only opportunities in the haircare and styling industry. Wigs, weaves, artistic styling for photo and video projects, braids, extreme/unique coloration and fade design cuts are just some of the many specializations you have to choose from to take your haircare career to the next level.


Makeup artistry is a way to transform, enhance, conceal, and express oneself. It can be easy to immediately think of salon and retail when considering a career in makeup. Special event makeup for celebrations, ceremonies, and retail demonstrations is a prolific part of the beauty industry. However, you may also want to consider a career in effects makeup, online makeup application tutorials, celebrity makeup artistry, and set makeup for television networks and various public figures.

Nail Care

Manicures and pedicures are an important part of cosmetology that are continuing to grow in popularity. Specialty nail design techniques and unique materials make this area of cosmetology one of the most creative. The design and decoration choices are infinite. You could help clients grow and accentuate their natural nails with conditioning treatments and supplement recommendations. Also, you could help clients with artificial nails. All in all, the decoration choices available give you many options to make your clients happy.


A component of cosmetology that doesn’t often get professional recognition is the production and endorsement side of the industry. Product development and endorsement is an important and integral part of the beauty industry. This includes developing new techniques, formulating new products, discovering new tools, and finally, helping support and represent brands you believe in.

Get an Education

Once you have chosen the field you are most interested in pursuing, it is time to train. You will need formal training with qualified educators in order to have a long-lasting, successful career in cosmetology. While you train to become a cosmetologist, you will want to assess your individual needs, set realistic goals, decide on a program that is right for you and stay committed.

Assess Your Individual Needs

Everyone’s lives and abilities are different. You should take a moment and assess your individual needs. What is your schedule like? Can things be moved around to support your education? What are the current demands of your life? What is your financial situation? These are all questions you will need to answer before committing to a program.

Set Realistic Goals

Setting goals is a great way to motivate yourself and help guide your career decisions. However, it is important that you are realistic about your goals. This will help you avoid discouragement and disappointment. For example, doing celebrity makeup right out of cosmetology school isn’t likely to happen. So, you may want to gain some experience in a formal salon setting and branch out on a couple of special projects before getting into celebrity makeup artistry. It all begins with choosing the right program to facilitate your personal goals.

Decide on a Program That is Right for You

This decision will depend on your schedule and goals. While certain areas of cosmetology are more academically demanding than others, you may be relieved to know that you can become fully trained and certified quickly. Most programs can be completed in less than 10 months. You just need to find the program that fits your needs, schedule, and life.

Stay Committed

Perseverance is the key to success. As much as we may want to, we can’t control everything in our lives. The unexpected can derail even the best laid plans. It is important that you stay committed to your education, even in the face of uncertainty. It may not always be simple or easy, but you are worth the effort and you deserve the success.

Fuel Your Creativity

Technical knowledge, methodical preparation, and skill mastery are all crucial to building a solid foundation and a good reputation, but there is more to cosmetology than just the combs and brushes. Every field of cosmetology is about beauty, creativity, expression, and transformation. This is the part of your career that will need to be nurtured. When you feel the passion and creativity beginning to fade, you can connect with a cosmetology community, experiment, innovate, revisit the basics, try something new and create content to regain the passion.

Connect with a Cosmetic Community

Enthusiasm can be infectious. Especially when you find a group of people who share your passion. If you are new to cosmetology or are just beginning your industry exploration, a great place to start is online communities. There are passionate professionals on social media and various content platforms. In addition, you can connect to people around the world and jumpstart your creativity. If you are having trouble finding the right community for your specific needs, try starting something brand new.

Experiment and Innovate

Are there techniques you have difficulty with? Do you find yourself wishing for products that don’t exist yet? Is there a tool or process you feel needs improvement? Chances are you aren’t alone. Problems occur in the beauty industry that need solutions. Rather than waiting around for other people to come up with the solution, you can harness your creativity and come up with new methods and products to fill these industry gaps. After all, experimentation and innovation help the beauty industry to evolve and can be the catalysts for inspiration and continued creative expression.

Revisit the Basics

There will likely be times during your education and throughout your career that you encounter obstacles. These difficulties can discourage you. To push through, try getting back to basics. Revisit the parts of the industry that interested you in the first place. Then, refamiliarize yourself with the fundamentals to help you branch off in a new creative direction.

Try Something New

Boredom can be an obstacle on the road to inspiration. If you feel stuck, you should consider trying new things and learning new skills. For example, are you a hair stylist who usually specializes in haircuts? Try branching out into coloring or styling. Likewise, are you a makeup artist who usually attends events and makeup demonstrations? Give some extreme effect techniques a try. Also, getting out of your comfort zone can help ignite your career passion.

Create Content

Sharing your excitement is a great way to fuel it. Displaying your creativity for others to see might initially feel intimidating, particularly if you aren’t extroverted. Also, putting your work out into the world can lead to judgement, but it can also lead to support and recognition. You could curate an informative blog, begin a photographic portfolio, or create video tutorials. In the age of digital and online marketing, creating cosmetology content can help support your personal creativity while getting your name out in the industry.

Begin and Expand Your Cosmetology Career

Once a solid foundation has been laid through passion, creativity, and education, it is time to build your career. Considering your goals will help you create a plan for your professional life, but there is more to it than planning. Let’s take a look at some of the other things you will need to do to help secure your long-term career success.

Do Your Research

Firstly, it is important that you stay informed if you want an established, respectable cosmetology career. Interested in a position at an established spa or salon? Consider looking into their history and general reputation. Look at online reviews or speak with people who have worked there before. This can help you find a reputable establishment that fits your personal standards. The same goes for the products and tools you recommend to clients. Secondly, make sure to do research about the brand, and the ingredients and materials used to create the products and tools you use. No one expects you to know everything about every single tool, product, and brand available. However, you should be informed enough to answer basic questions and avoid client injury.

Gain Experience

It is okay if your career ends up somewhere completely different than where it started. In fact, there are many careers that require a certain amount of outside experience before you will even be considered. This professional experience can come from job opportunities, continued education, apprenticeships, and competitions. Consider new tasks as an opportunity to grow and try to think of challenges as steps toward your ultimate career goals. Thus, the more experience you have the more confident you will be in your skills. This will allow you to seize more opportunities. Your experiences in the industry can also help you build a name for yourself and elevate your recognition in the industry.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, modern technology has created new career opportunities that provide varying levels of earning potential and scheduling flexibility. Are you someone concentrating on gaining experience while avoiding marketing and promotion? You may want to start by teaming up with an established salon or spa. Do you need a more flexible schedule? Think about running your own company through a website and taking appointments with clients in their homes. Everyone defines personal and professional success a little bit differently. Make sure you are working toward your own definition of success when making decisions about your cosmetology career.

Did learning about how to get started in cosmetology 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 Different Hair Cutting Techniques?

Hairstylist demonstrating hair cutting techniques on woman in barber's chair

Different people get haircuts for different reasons. Talking to you about what a client doesn’t like about their current cut can help guide you to make any necessary corrections. Likewise, if you have a specific hairstyle in mind you should be upfront and detailed about your expectations so that your client can make the appropriate choices. The reasoning and motivation behind wanting a change in hairstyle can help inform the method and tool choices. That is why it is important to be a hairstylist that can communicate openly with clients. And, the best way to prepare for a career in hair cutting is to attend a hair school near you. Let’s take a more in depth look at the three main reasons people seek out a new haircut.

Hair Cutting Techniques: Corrections

Hairstyle correction refers to fixing something that a client is unhappy with about their current cut or style. This can range from the wildly dramatic to the barely noticeable. It all depends on the kind of correction they are looking for. For example, you could get away with very subtle, minor changes if they are unhappy with the thickness or volume of their hair. However, if you are hoping to correct a previous hair cutting mistake or aiming to create dramatic movement you are probably going to need more dramatic solutions.

Hair Cutting Techniques: Self-Expression

Haircuts are a great way to physically express personality and attitude. They can even be used to celebrate changes and recognize the beginning of a new personal chapter. Knowing how a client wants the haircut to make them feel can help you make the right choices for tools and techniques. Are they looking for an easy, low maintenance look that values function? Are they hoping to soften some edges with something bouncy and fun? These kinds of descriptors can help you create the look they want to see when they look in the mirror.

Fashion or Style Project Haircuts

While these kinds of cuts are rare, and typically apply more to wig work, fashion projects are another reason that a client might be in need of a new hairdo. Photo shoots, music videos, films, and photography projects are just some of the examples of highly stylized projects that could require a dramatic change in cut or hairstyle. These advanced hair cutting techniques can be learned at a hair school near you.

Things to Consider about a Haircut

It can be easy to look at celebrities and want their exact hairstyle. Unfortunately, the vast differences in hair from person to person can really make it hard to pull off the same look as someone else. Before your client falls in love with a haircut that would be unrealistic, take a moment to consider their current hairstyle situation. Here is a quick look at a few of the things you will want to keep in mind when you are style shopping for your client’s haircuts.

Hair Texture

Be realistic about how your client’s hair texture: is it coarse, fine, curly or straight? This will help you be realistic about how a certain haircut might look once it is completed, as well as how it might grow out over time. If they have synthetically texturized their follicles by relaxing or perming them, that should be taken into consideration before making the haircut, as well.

Hair Condition

Your client may want a long, luxurious hairstyle, but if their ends are severely damaged it can prevent them from achieving that goal. At the same time, if they struggle with an exceptionally dry scalp or damaged root system then a short cut may make the problem worse and more visible. If your client really wants a dazzling new hairstyle take the time to talk over their hair’s current condition and timelines.

Current Haircut

There are things that your client’s current haircut may determine about their future one. For instance, if they are currently sporting a look with a lot of choppy or dramatic angles it may take losing quite a bit of length if they want to smooth out their look. Another example would be if they have bangs. The length, thickness, and angle of their bangs, as well as whether or not they want to keep them or phase them out, can play a big role in the new haircut.

Cutting Terms and Techniques

While the idea of changing your client’s look can be exciting, the techniques and terminology of the salon can be confusing. Any certified hairstylist should help clearly explain or define any technique that their client might have a question about. However, let’s take a quick look at some of the more common terms and techniques you might hear when it comes to haircuts.


This term refers to a method of cutting that creates different lengths that lay one on top of the other. Layering helps create movement and make hairstyles lighter and cooler to wear. This is a great option for hairstyles that fall flat and appear stale or stagnant. It is also a great hairstyle option for warm weather months that can often lead to sweating and overheating. Layers can be subtle with very little difference in layer lengths, but they can also be dramatic with a vast difference in length between the bottom and the top layers. They can also be strategically placed to help shape your client’s face. It just depends on the client’s personal preferences.


Thinning refers to a technique that makes thick styles easier to wear. The thought behind thinning and layering are the same, but the overall effects are very different. Hairstylist will often use a specialized cutting tool called thinning shears to help lighten thick, heavy hairstyles. Thinning shears look like scissors with small sections cut out. It essentially looks like one of the scissor blades has the teeth of a comb. They are used to cut small, subtle sections out of the edge of a hairstyle to remove volume and weight. This can also be done with straight scissors through a technique called “slithering” where the hairstylist uses the straight scissors to make vertical cuts into the edge of the hairstyle.


Blunting is a term that refers to creating blocky or straight edges. It is a great way to add drama to a look. This might require a client to sacrifice length if they already have layers. Blunting a layered hairstyle would take the shortest layer and cut everything else to that length. The client can also choose to blunt a certain section or area of their hairstyle.

Graduated or Stacked Cut

The layers in a stacked or graduated haircut are very close together. They are often chosen to create bulk and weight in a haircut, while traditional layering often leads to a thinning or lightening result in the hairstyle. The angles of this kind of cut have to be precise. The weight line, or where the weight falls in a particular hairstyle, has to be deeply considered when making the decision toward a graduated or stacked cut. It is particularly helpful for those with thin or fine follicles.

Extension Terminology

Extensions don’t exactly refer to haircut, but they do affect style volume and length. Their popularity is on the rise among all colors, styles, and textures. So, it is worth taking a brief look at some of the terms that are used like set, weft, disconnect, and stitched.


A set of extensions refers to the entirety of the extensions. These sets come in a variety of length and thickness options so that that client is sure to get the additions to their hairstyle they are looking for.


The term “weft” refers to a single extension in a set. A set of extensions is made up of several wefts. The number of individual extensions depends on the style the client is going for. There can also be several different lengths and densities of wefts within the same set to create dimension in the hairstyle.


This term refers to the point where the client’s natural hair end and their synthetic extensions begin. The disconnect is typically more visible in styles that have blunt or boxy edges. That is why it is important that the client find a hairstylist who can help them learn how to properly and thoroughly blend these extensions into seamless style on a daily basis.


This refers to extensions that are sewn in rather than using adhesive or clips to secure the wefts. This process is typically time consuming and takes a skilled and focused hairstylist to complete. If a client is someone who likes to switch up their style fairly frequently, one of the more temporary options of securing extensions might be the right call. If they want absolute security in their new length and volume, this method is a far more permanent solution.

Barber and Close Cuts

Salons are not the only places haircuts happen. Too often we neglect to talk about barber shops and their contribution to hairstyle and design. If a client is someone who prefers a barber to a hairdresser, here are a couple of terms they might want to familiarize themselves with.


Fading is a method of hairstyling that uses a combination of clippers and scissors to taper the hairstyle from the base of the neck to the top of the head. A barber or stylist will use clippers to get an extremely close cut around the base of the neck and then very gradually increase the length tapering upward. Once they reach the top of the head, the length of hairstyle can vary widely. The term “fade” refers to the tapering cut leading upward.

Design Cuts

There are plenty of barbers and stylists that are sought out for their design cuts. A hairstyle needs to be short before a design can be cut into it. These haircuts are typically found in the upper parts of fades or on people with other closely shaved hairstyles. This specialization uses a variety of clipper types and attachments to create pictures and designs in hair that range from simple to exceptionally elaborate.

Final Thoughts

There are a lot of different ways that you can switch up your client’s hairstyle no matter what you happen to be working with naturally. It is important to know what to ask for regardless of the direction a client wants to take their personal style in. Knowing the proper terms and techniques can really help you clarify the hairstyle goals and the clients concerns when discussing their decisions and options. It can also help you feel more confident when taking charge of their brand new, exciting look. If you are creative and enjoy helping others express themselves, then a career in hair cutting and styling may be right for you. Look for a hair school near you and your career might be just around the next corner.

Want to Learn More?

Did learning about what the different hair cutting techniques are 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. At the Minnesota School of Cosmetology, 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.

Beach Chic 101: Everything You Need to Create Effortless, Summer Beauty Styles

Written By: Meesa OShanka

Cosmetology Instructor MSC Woodbury

We’ve finally arrived!  It’s time for fun in the sun and ice-cold beverages while we lather up with sunscreen for the next few months of summer.  While we crave the sun during our long Minnesotan winters, we also must refine our summer beauty routine to meet our busy schedules.  Here are some tips and tricks If you’re looking for a fun beachy look without spending hours getting ready.

Summer Beauty Must-Haves: Tinted Moisturizer

Tinted moisturizer is your BFF for the easiest summer beauty looks!  Tinted moisturizer gives you all the benefits of a sheer coverage foundation.  It’s lightweight and easy to apply with either a blender sponge or your fingertips.  The best part about tinted moisturizers is that they have your skin protection built right in.  Most tinted moisturizers will come with broad spectrum SPF 15 or higher to keep your skin protected while you’re out and about.

Summer Beauty Eye Makeup

To give yourself the effortless summer-ready eye look go for lighter neutral colors like coppers and browns like the ones found in the Urban Decay Naked Palettes.  Top it off with some dark brown liner to define your lash line and lastly let’s not forget a glossing mascara to complete your eye look. 

If you have oily skin or sweat-prone, you will want to make sure you are using a face and eye primer to lock in your looks. Don’t be afraid to add a little shimmer to your eyeshadow either because if the sun is shining, so are you!

Beachy Waves: The Summer Style Essential

For a quick and easy tousled beachy look grab yourself a salt spray for your hair.  Big Sexy Surfrider, Wella’s EIMI Ocean Spritz or Bumble & Bumble Surf Spray are some popular options for getting beach waves.  Professional styling products will give you the look of having just come out of the ocean without all that actual ocean salt on your colorful locks.  

Salt spray is easy to use.  After shampooing and conditioning your hair, towel dry and spritz a generous amount of your texture spray on to your hair.  Scrunch it up a bit in your hands and let air dry.

Pool-Ready Summer Beauty Picks

Spending extra time at the pool this summer? If you’re loving your time in pools treated with chlorine, you’ll want to take extra steps to ensure your hair is cared for. Here are a few tips that you can use to care both colored and natural hair to make sure your hair is in tip-top shape:

  • Use a leave-in conditioner: Leave-in conditioner provides a barrier that can help to protect your hair from the chlorine exposure in pools. There are leave-in conditioners designed specifically for swimmers and chlorine-exposed strands, like the Ion Swimmer’s Leave-in Conditioner.
  • Keep your blonde hair shining: Noticing your fair hair is taking on a greenish tint? Light haired colors may turn green when you’re in chlorine because copper is oxidized in the chlorine. Keep your hair bright and pure by using special swimmer shampoo, conditioners and purifying treatments like the Malibu Swimmers line.

Don’t Forget the Sunscreen

The last thing you’ll need for your beach look is sunscreen.  With the weather getting hotter and all of us craving that Vitamin D time make sure that you take time out of the day to put on some sunscreen to protect your beautiful skin. Sun protection is important to protect our skin from signs of premature aging and reduces the risk of skin cancer.

What Kind of Protection Do You Need?

So what should you be looking for in a sunscreen? First of all, when choosing a sunscreen always look for the words “broad spectrum”. Broad Spectrum sunscreens protect from both UVA and UVB rays while you’re out being a social butterfly.  Go for a minimum of SPF 30 and remember to reapply your sunscreen every couple of hours for best results.

Want to learn how to create easy and effortless beauty styles? Contact us today to learn about our Cosmetology and Esthiology programs.

The Importance of Communication Skills in Cosmetology

Cosmetologist using communication skills with client

There are many reasons that someone might consider cosmetology as a potential career path. Professions in the cosmetology industry can be both thrilling and rewarding in a lot of different ways. Helping people feel like the best version of themselves can be very fulfilling and there are many avenues of cosmetology to choose from. Skin, hair, nails and makeup are all areas that can be explored through cosmetology. The take your career to the next level, to gain new customers and retain current customers, a cosmetologist needs good communication skills.

Why Communication is Key

Speaking to clients is just as important as being able to perform the tasks of your job. Communication is how you sell your services and ensure that your clients are satisfied with your work. If you have poor relational skills or weak communication, it can do serious and lasting damage to your professional reputation. Which is why it is understandable that a significant amount of cosmetology students or those considering a career in any field of cosmetology may be anxious about this particular aspect of the industry. Luckily, there are some tips you can remember and some points to keep in mind so that you can feel confident about communicating with clients no matter what career in cosmetology you want to pursue.

Communication Skill #1 – Clarity

It is easiest when you are dealing with a client who can clearly communicate what they want. This is not always the case. You will encounter someone who has trouble describing or explaining what they want from you or how they want to look. You will need to get creative and rely on the strength of your own communication to come to an understanding. When you are trying to clarify communication between the client and yourself, remember that it is all about understanding what the client expects, and adjusting those expectations to them.


You can only please a client if you know what they want. So, the first thing that you will need to do is make sure that you have a solid grasp on what your client is expecting from you. Using visual and celebrity references can help. You can use color charts so that clients can better understand and identify the specific color they are expecting. If a client is coming to you with a problem, they are hoping to get some professional help with. It is also important that you understand the full scope of the issue before beginning. Some areas of cosmetology can deal with vulnerable skin and hair issues. When you are attempting to get some clarification or information about these problems it is important that you ask questions in the most sensitive way possible.


Even if you are the most skilled person in your profession there will come a time that a client will approach you with an impossible request. Adjusting a client’s expectations is a key part in any cosmetologist’s communication. It is important to keep in mind that honesty is the best policy when a client’s request is unreasonable or impossible. Knowingly disappointing a client with a false expectation is bad for business. When you encounter these communication challenges, the important thing is to have other options ready to present. The disappointment of not getting exactly what they want can be dissuaded with creative and mindful alternatives. Some people will be unhappy no matter what kind of adjustment you present to them. However, you will find that most people will happily take a compromise when you present them with a legitimate concern about their initial expectation.

Communication Skill #2 – Compromise and Confrontation

Client confrontation can be the most intimidating part of considering a career in cosmetology. You can excel in every area of your profession, but if you are unable to communicate to reach a compromise with your clients it will be difficult to retain clients. Communicating concerns and offering solutions are the two main areas to deal with the difficult side of client communication.

Communicating Concerns

There are many ways a client’s expectations might be impossible for you to meet. A client might want a last-minute appointment that you don’t have time to fit into your schedule. It could be someone who wants a hair treatment that would severely damage their hair. It also might be as sensitive as declining esthetician services because of a skin condition you can’t identify. Regardless of the issue, the first thing to remember is that you don’t want to humiliate your client or make them feel stupid. There may be times that you can ask question that lead your client to draw their own conclusions in your favor. Other times it may require a simple, thoughtful explanation of a certain restriction or challenge that needs to be addressed. There could even be a time when you will have to politely let your client know that they have an issue that is beyond your training and expertise. However, you need to clearly communicate your concern about an issue, the key skill you will need in confronting a client is kindness. Your consideration for their preferences and feelings will speak volumes.

Offering Solutions

Being able to present attractive, comparable alternatives to your clients when you can’t give them exactly what they want is a significant part of keeping them happy and returning. A combination of planning, skill and genuine effort goes a long way in the alternative solution department. You can’t prepare for every possible scenario but getting to know your clients’ styles and personalities might help you better troubleshoot with them. Keeping your communication skills sharp and up-to-date will allow you to offer your client a greater range of alternative that may approximate what they were originally looking for more closely. Even with things as simple as a scheduling conflict, an effort to reschedule and sincere concern for your client’s needs can make a big difference.

Communication Skill #3 – Confidence

Cosmetology is all about expression. Whether it is an esthetics treatment, completely new hairdo, an interesting manicure or am intense makeup makeover, cosmetology helps us bring things to the surface for the world to see. Confidence is an enormous part of that expression. A client’s confidence in your skill and ability, as well as confidence in their own appearance are a core part of successful cosmetology on any level.


If a client isn’t confident in your professional skills it is going to be easy for anxiety and tensions to rise. There are ways that you can demonstrate your ability besides hanging your cosmetology license on the wall or handing someone a portfolio. With new clients and prospective projects, it is important for you to exude confidence in your own skill. If you seem relaxed and sure of what you are doing the client to feel the same way. Practicing and staying current on trends will help build a solid foundation for your professional confidence, and allow others to feel confident in you, too. Continuing this level of professionalism throughout your relationships with your clients will help them feel secure in approaching you about trying new or challenging things.


There is nothing better in cosmetology than helping someone achieve the look they were hoping for. Likewise, disappointing a client can hurt your self-esteem and your professional reputation. So, it is important that your client not only looks good, but feels good about your work. Your communication skill level doesn’t have to be extraordinary for you to help someone feel good about themselves.

The Power of Positivity

Did your client have a creative idea? Let them know how innovative they are, even if it turns out to be something you can’t do. Does your client have a particularly attractive feature you want to help them accentuate? Tell them so. Is your client’s style unique? Compliment them on it. Along with enhancing your skills to give your best to your clients, it is a good idea to speak positively to your clients and to affirm their appearance choices every time you get a chance.

Cosmetology is an exciting, expressive and ever evolving field that has the potential to do anything from keeping someone looking their best for an upcoming event to creating the film and movie effects we all love. Considering a career in cosmetology will require training and dedication to your leaning and perfecting your skill, but it will also involve a lot of communication. By remembering these client communication tips, you can feel more comfortable dealing with clients in the capacity of cosmetology no matter what your specialization is.

Did learning about the importance of communication skills in cosmetology interest you? Need to get your undergraduate certificate in cosmetology first? 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.

Confidence & Cosmetology: Beauty Inside and Out

Looking in the mirror is a different experience for everybody. Some of us feel happy, some of us feel insecure, others of us are almost entirely indifferent to our appearance. Whatever the case is, cosmetologists instill a sense of pride and confidence for clients. Makeup and hair can be useful tools that can help your clients feel beautiful, strong, confident and important. Cosmetic work can do wonders for a person’s self-esteem, when approached in the right way. 

Listen to Requests and Consult References

 When someone comes to you for a new style, they will either have photos or descriptions of their desired look. Having an outline of what your client wants can be helpful, but it also leads to a lot of pressure. It will be helpful to remember a couple of things when dealing with this kind of client.

Remember that this experience is about the client feeling good.

Once the cosmetologist finishes with their work, they want their client to feel a significant boost of confidence and self-esteem. When the client looks at themselves, they should see the look they were hoping for. Cosmetologists should side with the client’s request even if the cosmetologist has other preferences.

Be upfront about unrealistic expectations.

Cosmetologists should never shy away from a good challenge. Evens uperior cosmetology skills can’t morph someone’s face into their favorite celebrity. If clients need a reality check, focus on what they can expect to see rather than what the cosmetologist can’t deliver.

Ask Good Questions

As a cosmetologist, you should understand what your client wants before you begin. Not every client is going to come prepared with explicit instructions and a bunch of visuals. Prepare to do a bit of investigative work when necessary. If you are unsure of your client’s expectations, here are a few things you can ask to help gain clarification.

Is it for a special occasion?

This can help the cosmetologist gauge how bold the look should be. Your client may have an idea of the look they want, but cosmetologists should make sure that they use the right styles to compliment their look.

What are your favorite features?

This will help the cosmetologist know what to stress and even what to avoid or conceal. Knowing the things that your client already feels confident about will help them amplify that confidence while down playing other features.

What color is the outfit you’re planning to wear to the event?

If the cosmetologist has a client who needs hair and/or makeup done for a specific event, it is important to know what they will wear. This gives the cosmetologist color palette options, along with haircut and styling choices. No one wants their face and hair to clash with their fashion. Neutral tones and colors that compliment eye color are safe bets if the outfit is undecided.

Make Gentle Suggestions

There will be times that a cosmetologist will get a client who wants their makeup or hair done for a special occasion. The cosmetologist may have no input or suggestion when it comes to how they want the finished product to look. Making suggestions about someone’s appearance can feel like walking into a mine field. Here are some ways to navigate beauty clients without hurting their confidence or overwhelming them with options.

Do a thorough visual assessment before you say anything.

Some clients may not be able to determine their aesthetic strengths, so the cosmetologist should meet them halfway. The cosmetologist should look for areas they consider strengths, as well as more problematic challenges.

Go with compliments over criticisms.

When a cosmetologist explains suggestions, they should make sure that they focus on the positives. Concentrate on their strengths to boost confidence. The cosmetologist’s job is to make their clients look and feel better, not worse. The cosmetologist should help the client focus on the attractive qualities, while distracting them from flaws.

Don’t overwhelm them options and opinions.

Clients who aren’t particularly knowledgeable or interested in cosmetics might be intimidated by products and industry terms. The cosmetologist should use a visual assessment to come up with ideas that will work well for the client. Clients can still have a say in how they look, but aren’t flustered or frustrated by too much information.

As a cosmetologist, you have the gifts and skills to change the way people feel about and see themselves. You have the opportunity to help give clients looks that are not only unique and beautiful, but brave. Make their confidence your calling card.

Interested in learning more about becoming a cosmetologist and helping your clients improve their confidence level? Need to get your undergraduate certificate in cosmetology first? 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.

The Positive Impact Cosmetology Has on Health

Cosmetologist and clientImproving your health should be a continuous journey for both cosmetologists and their clients. Everyone should strive to become a healthier, better version of themselves. It is not just about maintaining physical health, but also mental health. Cosmetology can have positive impacts for not only cosmetologists, but salon clients as well.

Positive Impact on the Cosmetologist

For cosmetologists, working in an industry that they love can have positive impacts on their health. People tend to feel less stressed and happier with their lives if they have a job they enjoy. If you do not dread your job, it is a lot easier to get up and go to work in the morning.

Avoiding Stress as a Cosmetologist

Stress can lead to depression and anxiety, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America. People may develop bad habits because of stress.  These habits may include excessive eating, drinking or smoking. When you have a job that you love, you may not turn to coping mechanisms to handle stress. People who love their job are more likely to be healthy and happy.

Despite this, not all stress is bad. Stress can motivate us to perform at a higher level or be life-saving in intense situations. Work stress and long-term stress, on the other hand, is not good for a person. Long-term stress can cause chronic health problems. A person with chronic stress will have trouble with immunity, digestion, sleep and reproduction health. Fight stress with plenty of exercise, good nutrition and a job that you enjoy.

Many cosmetologists are in the profession because they are passionate about beauty. They like working with hair and nails and socializing with others. Making other people feel beautiful can be very fulfilling for cosmetologists and stylists.

Positive Impact for the Customer

Customers visiting hair or nail salons are often looking to professionals to look and feel beautiful. They may want a new hairdo, color update, manicure or pedicure. People enjoy getting pampered by a cosmetologist. These services can help eliminate stress, raise self-esteem and improve the health of hair and nails.

Eliminating Stress

Being pampered can help eliminate stress. People can relax while the cosmetologist takes care of their beauty needs. The customer can sit in the chair and take a break. They don’t have to care for their spouse or children during this time, allowing them to focus on their own needs. They get to relax and unwind, which is a major benefit after a long day.

Scalp massages during the shampooing process helps relieve stress and increases endorphins in the brain. Also, a cosmetologist who befriend their clients may also feel a greater sense of social and emotional fulfillment.

Raising Self-Esteem

Not only does getting pampered eliminate stress, but it also raises self-esteem. Individuals who treat themselves to pampering at a salon tend to feel better about themselves. Whether a client gets a haircut, new hair color, fresh set of nails, or make-up, clients can feel like a whole new person. This enhances their self-esteem and improves overall well-being. Low self-esteem can lead to depression, so taking the time to get hair or nails done at a salon can really help raise a person’s self-esteem. Cosmetologists also feel better about themselves after transforming their customer’s appearances.

Social interaction with clients can also help the customer’s and cosmetologist’s self-esteem. Connecting with friends and sharing an intimate exchange can make a person feel better about themselves, knowing they have a positive circle of friends.

Improving Health Through Hair

It isn’t all about mental health. Customers experience physical health benefits when they visit their hair stylist. Oily hair can lead to skin irritations, which can be treated at salons. Professional shampooing and services can eliminate excess oil and promote scalp and skin health.

Cosmetologists that use chemical free and non-toxic hair accessories will also help the customer keep their hair in pristine condition. Many hair accessories can split ends and damage hair. The proper use of hair care accessories is important for the cosmetologist to help the customer keep their hair healthy.

Hair loss may occur, whether due to stress or a medical condition. Having clean and regularly maintained hair can prevent hair loss, or at least slow down the process. Treating the hair and keeping it healthy is an important part of the prevention process, according to the American Academy of Dermatology Association.

Cosmetology can have many positive impacts on health for both the cosmetologist and clients. Mental health is the most positively impacted. Having a job you love allows people to free their minds from stressful thoughts. Anyone hoping to become a cosmetologist can experience all the positive effects that the salon can provide for cosmetologists and their clients.

Ready to reduce the stress and raise the self-esteem of your customers? Need to get your undergraduate certificate in cosmetology first? 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.

Making Dreams Come True: Brandon’s Story

Brandon with Woodbury student, Elizabeth Sanchez.

Minnesota School of Cosmetology invites Brandon, who suffers from a rare genetic disorder called trisomy 18, also known as Edwards syndrome, to shadow students every other week at the Woodbury campus to learn more about the cosmetology industry.

Brandon first visited the campus as a client with his mother Natalie where he expressed his dream of becoming a cosmetologist. Brandon’s mom reached out to Minnesota School of Cosmetology’s Campus Director, Jill Hocking, and came up with the idea of allowing him to come to campus every other week to learn new skills from the students.

“I love fashion, doing hair, makeup and polishing nails,” said Brandon. “I’m really happy to be here!”

One employee who stopped by to say hello shared how happy he is when he is on campus. “He was just moving around the mannequin, blow drying like he was a famous hair stylist.”

Brandon’s Story:

Brandon’s genetic defect has caused him to have a cleft lip and palate, growth retardation, and he has had to have multiple surgeries to reconstruct his ear canals and he wears a hearing aid. He also had to get growth hormone shots for many years because he was not growing and was way under the normal percentile for his age. The doctors said Brandon would never talk, crawl or walk.

Brandon’s mom dedicated her life to him. According to Natalie, the doctors and social workers said that they thought she should give Brandon to foster care because he was not going to live long. It was at this exact moment in time, that his father walked out of the hospital and left her there alone.

“I told them no. I said that if Brandon was going to die he would die with me,” said Natalie. “I taught him how to crawl and also to walk. He has had many surgeries on his mouth and ears. On one occasion he stopped breathing when they were putting him to sleep and he almost died. He was in ICU for 2 weeks connected to multiple machines.”

“I’m very thankful to you guys for accepting him and making him feel so special. Sincerely, thank you!” said Brandon’s mom.

About Trisomy 18:

According to U.S. National Library of Medicine, trisomy 18, also called Edwards syndrome, is a chromosomal condition associated with abnormalities in many parts of the body. Individuals with trisomy 18 often have slow growth before birth (intrauterine growth retardation) and a low birth weight. Affected individuals may have heart defects and abnormalities of other organs that develop before birth. Other features of trisomy 18 include a small, abnormally shaped head; a small jaw and mouth; and clenched fists with overlapping fingers. Due to the presence of several life-threatening medical problems, many individuals with trisomy 18 die before birth or within their first month. Five to 10 percent of children with this condition live past their first year, and these children often have severe intellectual disability.

Connecting Community & Cosmetology: 

Minnesota School of Cosmetology is looking into having more aspiring community members with disabilities shadow students at our campus to learn more about the cosmetology industry. If you or someone you know is interested please contact Jill Hocking, campus director at jhocking@msccollege.edu.

5 Reasons You Should Get a Cosmetology Diploma

From personal to professional, there are many reasons to get a cosmetology diploma

If you want to work in a fun environment, love staying current on the latest trends in beauty, and have a passion for helping people look and feel their best, getting a cosmetology diploma is a great first step.

Still worried that it may not be right for you? Fear not! Read on to find out why getting a cosmetology diploma is an awesome pathway toward a fulfilling career.

You love it!

The old saying is true: If you love what you do, you never have to work.

Salon time can be super fun: hanging with your girlfriends, getting ready for prom or a wedding, or just relaxing and receiving a skin treatment. If you enjoy your time at the salon, why not be a part of it?

But you can’t go from cutting your niece’s hair to raking in tips at your own chair in a salon. You need training. And that’s where the cosmetology diploma comes in.

A good cosmetology school will teach you how to cut, color and style hair, provide spa treatments and apply facials, and give manicures and pedicures. Those in the beauty industry can find enjoyment in their work as they help people feel good inside and out, but they need proper schooling first.

You’ll learn things beyond beauty

Sure, going to cosmetology school will help you learn the latest industry trends and how to translate those looks to your customers.

However, you’ll also learn about the business side of the industry: tracking your sales and productivity, how many guests you retain, interpersonal relations, customer service and other behind-the-scenes aspects of the field. These are the kinds of skills you’ll be able to apply to nearly any industry.

Some schools also utilize technology, such as iPads, in the classroom, giving you the chance to use the latest programs and applications as you learn cosmetology.

It’s a growing industry

You don’t want to be stuck with a diploma and find yourself without any job prospects after you graduate.

That’s what makes the field so intriguing. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a 10 percent growth rate for barbers, hairdressers and cosmetologists from 2014 to 2024. The demand for special hair services has increased in recent years, a trend that is expected to continue over the next decade, according to the BLS.

There will be future openings as people retire or leave the profession for other gigs, and you can find salons in every area of the country. Many in the profession are also self-employed, which would let you set your own schedule.

There are many other career options

If you’re fascinated by the beauty industry but don’t see yourself working at a chair all day, there are other options you might not even be aware of. With the right education and experience, there are unique paths you can take in your career as a cosmetologist.


Industry publications and the companies that make beauty products need people who know about cosmetology and can write in an entertaining and informative way.

Sales rep

If you like meeting new people and are passionate about a particular line, being a sales rep might make sense. You’ll showcase products at trade shows and events, or going to salons and spas and demonstrate their benefits.

Sales consultant

In this role, you work for companies that want their lines sold at salons and spas. With your schooling and expertise, you’ll know what beauticians are looking for and be able to tell people why they should sell a certain product at their location.

Brand ambassador

At conferences and other events, you’ll be interacting directly with potential customers, giving out samples and generating excitement about beauty products.

These are just of the few opportunities you can find outside the traditional salon setting.

Do you want to own a salon?

If so, you’ll want an education in cosmetology. Many of those with experience in the beauty profession go on to open up their own salons.

If you’ve been working at a salon for a few years, you may come up with ideas for you own unique location. It can be thrilling and rewarding to be in charge and make the big decisions.

In this case, you should also consider whether getting a degree in business makes sense. There are schools that have specialized management programs related to the salon/spa industry.

As you can see, no matter what you want to do with your career, there are plenty of reasons to get that cosmetology diploma.


MSC Donates 500 Dresses to Help Girls in Need for Prom

Minnesota School of Cosmetology is giving a big boost to a Minnesota nonprofit dedicated to collecting prom dresses and accessories for high school girls who are in need.Prom, Cosmotology, We Care

In January, MSC’s Plymouth location donated more than 500 prom dresses that they gathered to Operation Glass Slipper. The dresses will go to girls who are otherwise unable to attend prom due to difficult or financial family circumstances.

“The partnership we have with Operation Glass Slipper has been great! Each time we do a dress drop off you can tell we are making a difference by the excitement of the director, Pam Philipp, when she sees us and all the dresses that people have donated,” said Dani Vetrano, Associate Campus Director of MSC-Plymouth. “Our students have been able to see firsthand what a difference they can make in someone’s life by doing the updos and makeup for the dress recipients of the Princess Event. We truly enjoy the partnership with OGS and believe it goes hand in hand with our “We Care” mission!”

“Operation Glass Slipper has outfitted over 9,000 deserving girls since the project was founded in 2006. We are heavily dependent on donations of dresses and accessories,” Philipp said.

The dresses and accessories are available for juniors and seniors at no charge to girls throughout Minnesota and Western Wisconsin. Operation Glass Slipper collects gowns year round. They must be in good condition and no more than five years old.

“For several years the Minnesota School of Cosmetology in Plymouth as served as a collection site for donations to Operation Glass Slipper. Staff members volunteer their time to deliver these donations to the Operation Glass Slipper warehouse in West St. Paul. I am always amazed at the enormous quantity of donations they bring. The deliveries include many beautiful dresses, and we know that they will be eagerly chosen by the girls we serve. Our relationship with the Minnesota School of Cosmetology in Plymouth is extremely important to us, and we appreciate the graciousness and enthusiasm of the staff members who help us,” Philipp said.

The students and staff of MSC live by the words of Margaret Mead: “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”