How To Become a Hairstylist: Career Tips from Industry Experts

Shafiur Rahman
9 min readAug 20, 2020


Image by Janets

To be honest, hairstyling is a very fulfilling profession both socially and creative points of view. In this blog, you will get an outline of how to become a hairstylist from scratch. All you need is the passion, willingness and the skills to follow.

For many people, Hairstyles are like crowing jewel. It plays an integral role in how you look. And to be honest these days your looks determine a lot on how you get treated. Hairstyling is a rewarding career option. This is to say for the ones bestowed with the gift of creativity.

What is a hairstylist?

True to the name of the profession a hairstylist provides full salon service. This includes colour, blow-dry, shampoo cut and style hair. In addition, they analyse the client’s hair and facial features to recommend a style. They provide treatment, instructions and also sell products to their clients. Hairstylists also use chemicals to strengthen hair, curl hair and apply for extensions. Furthermore, some advanced level hairstylists even design and set up wigs for their clients.

Nowadays hairstylists are very high in demand as people these days are very conscious of their looks. Going out in public with a plain look is something everyone tries to avoid. So to make the right impression in a formal or casual approach people rely vastly on hairstylists. You will even find people who place a lot of trust in their hairstylists and share a great deal of their life with them.

Difference between a hairstylist and a hairdresser

Hairstylist and hairdresser both appear frequently when it comes to hair professionals. Mariam Webster has listed both the terms as synonymous. Although hairdresser is a very ‘old school’ term which means ‘to dress hair’. On the other hand, the term hairstyling is used to sound professional. Anyways you can use either.

What does a hairstylist do?

The job of a hairstylist will require you to carry out the following duties and responsibilities:

  1. Hairstylists provide different types of services to nurture their client’s hair for formal or casual settings for official and social events.
  2. Provide Hair colouring hair dyeing and bleaching to taint your customer’s hair.
  3. Demonstrate the use of several cosmetics to your customers and sell products.
  4. Be proactive with the customers to grow a loyal customer base.
  5. Build up strong interpersonal skills, professional presentation skills and technical ability.
  6. Have the willingness to grow and keep updated with the current trends.
  7. Be flexible regarding working hours.

Is becoming a hairstylist hard?

Definitely hairstyling is a very difficult job to learn for sure. You have to study different types of hair, study the face cuts of people and always keep updated with the latest trends. If you are passionate about these the whole thing will seem to you like a fun child play.

Hairstyling is an unclassified profession to be eligible for immigration. So the scope of natives to try out a career as a hairdresser can be a great career option.

Path to becoming a Hairstylist

For a job with lower stress levels like hairstyling requires no fixed set of requirements. You can even start by joining a salon in your locality to learn the job. Being involved in such apprenticeship programs will get you more involved in work. But you need to complete your GCSE’s before you can opt for such a career choice.
But after getting past the training period it’s better to get certified with National Vocation Qualification (NVQ). This will further increase your employability. Therefore, it’s better to be certified you if want to become a Hairstylist as a long term career prospect.

Decide if the career is right for you

Having a passion for the work is an important element to succeed in any job. You may have even tried out other jobs and been unsatisfied with it. But its never too late to rediscover yourself. There is always a chance for you to grow an interest in something new.

The jobs that provide feeling of creating something has always topped the job satisfaction list. A creative soul is always likely to be happier if he gets to use his creativity at his workplace

So if you are a person who always enjoyed making people happy with your creative skills a career as a hairstylist can be the best fit for you.

Become an apprentice

Apprenticeships are a good way to learn trades jobs which requires you to be skilled at Something. While working in a salon you will watch and learn all the skills you need to work as a hair professional. You will have to attain a certain level of expertise before you are ready to work as a hairstylist. An advantage of apprenticeships are you earn while you learn.

You can test your hand upon finishing training by trying out an apprenticeship. Apprenticeship programs are the best way to associate you with the other professionals. You can easily verify if your hands fit this profession.

Customers loyalty is something all professionals have to maintain in the field of cosmetology to make a good living. This builds up with time. This also leads to gaining new customers from old customers.
Becoming an apprentice Hairstylist is easy. There are plenty of job vacancies that will allow being one. You can earn while you learn.

Get the skills and training

It’s hard to get into an apprenticeship without any previous experience. So to give you a head start you can simply pursue an online course on hairstyling. This will introduce you to the job responsibilities. For this CPD certified courses are the best to get your foot in the door.

Hairstylist qualifications

Apprenticeships will get you the job training you need to be work as a hairstylist. But you need to be at least 16 years old to enrol in such programs. It’s also being to look up online courses before opting for the apprenticeships. This will give you the extra edge in your job application.
To qualify as a hair professional you must complete the diploma on hair professionals course. Learners must complete English and Maths in their GCSE’s and have well functional skills.

Qualities you need to succeed as a Hairstylist

Firstly, to become a hairstylist you need a specific set of skills to find success as a professional. On the other hand, you also need a few personal qualities that will guide you through your path. Some of these qualities that will complement you in achieving your goal are as follows:

Passion for the work

The route to success is not always an easy one. You are sure to come across a lot of bumps. Sometimes the speed of your progress may bother you. These factors may make you impatient and may lead you to look for shortcuts. So having a passion for your work is something you must have in order to reach your goal. Having passion will help you stick to your principles.


Your training will give you the mechanical skills you need to carry out different methods of styling on your clients. But the main job is still up to your creativity.

You have to use your creativity to make your customer look good. And it’s going to be you who determines how to get your clients his/her desired look. This is a challenge you are sure to come across very Frequently once you start working.

So finding a way to enjoy it is the best way to face a challenge. Subsequently, with the time you will get better at your work.

Organizational skills

You will require a certain level of organization skill to gain lasting success as a hairstylist. It’s not like you are going to work with your clients with bare hands.

As a hairstylist, you will need to use a lot of tools and products while working. In this sense being organized can be quite handy for you. As a result of being organized with your tools and equipment, you can serve your clients harmoniously without any obstruction.

In addition, Your clients will have full confidence in you. These small little details are very important for a Hairstylist to build up a huge loyal customer base.

Attention to detail

This is a powerful quality that helps build businesses from scratch. The ability to focus on small details for a long time can get monotonous.

This quality is required to manage both the business side and the operational side of hairstyling. Firstly, as a hairstylist, you may be asked to do the same thing over and over.

On the other hand, working as a manager you may be asked to manage the finances of the business. There are a lot of inns and outs in a business. It takes a lot of focus to keep track of all of them in one piece.

=> Join our Professional Hair Stylist training Course


The job of a Hairstylist will demand you to be very proactive and energetic at work. Not that the job is a very physically challenging one. But the job will need you to possess a lot of manual dextrality for finer and precise work. It needs a lot of energy to carry out such works throughout the day.

Good interpersonal skills

Just simply being good at something is not enough these days to succeed. Having good communication with your clients and co-workers is also an important aspect of success. In some cases, It’s not even the service the clients are looking for. They are looking for a civilized discussion with the right company. That keeps the customers coming multiple times.

Tips to become a pro hair stylist

Here are a few quick tips for all new generation workforce from a field professional:

Think who you want to become?

Provide yourself with the right directions. Visualize the person who you want to become when you are planning your first steps to your career.

Execute your decisions

The main aim is to earn the skill set that is going to get you the job. So the main point is to implement the plan. Executing the plan is the main part of the operation.

Try to get varied experience

Gaining varied experience across an array discipline is a highly valued experience. It’s great for building leadership qualities and professional development.

Be prepared to learn new things

Whether you are working as a professional or running your own business you always have to take important decisions. You only gain the capacity to make the best decisions in your own capability by having access to the right information and having the experience. This is what experiences worth.

Learn to work in a multi generational atmosphere

There are five different generations in the workforce all at once today. Each have their own work ethic, perspectives and assumptions. So to make it work Its better not to get in each other’s way. Rather giving each other space to show what they are the best way to unfold the full potential in any work environment.

Find a new way to overcome obstacles

It’s very common to face a bumpy route to a new career. Facing such a situation is likely to reveal a new path for you which can be equally or even more effective for you. So learn from experiences. Device new ways to accomplish and reach your goals. A roadblock is not always a bad thing.

Be willing to do new things

Build confidence in yourself to so that whatever happens you can figure a way out of it. This is one of the most important skills to cultivate in yourself.

Increase your online presence

As a hairdresser, you can make a lot of money by increasing your online presence field. A lot of hairstylists these days have an online portfolio of their work. In addition, they update their business’s Facebook Instagram pages all the time. Subsequently, this leads to more clients and more business.
Nowadays the internet is a huge platform for hairstylists. By exhibiting their expertise on social media can help them gain many new clients. So while operating as a business the social media identity can play a big role in success. Influencers on Facebook and Instagram are doing a lot of business on these platforms.

The best things about being a hairstylist

One of the best things you will enjoy about being a hairstylist is you get to meet a lot of fine people in person. In addition to that you also get to work with them and share amazing moments. Meanwhile, you also get to use your creativity a lot in your workplace. So you are definitely not gonna miss out from the fun of creating something new. What can be more satisfying than a happy client?

Salary and know how’s of being a hairstylist

Hairstylist get earn a very healthy sum of money from their work. The clients place a lot of trust on their hairstylist to make them look good. So this enables them to earn a lot of money. The average salary of a hairstylist is £22,164 per year. The amount may vary from place to place.

Concluding remarks

Hairstylists can also earn a lot by selling cosmetics and hair care products to their clients. It has become a great side hustle for them. Suggesting clients with the appropriate beauty and hair care product is also one of their job responsibilities.

Originally published at on August 20, 2020.



Shafiur Rahman

Shafiur is a professional blogger and eLearning & SaaS Industry Specialist.