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In spite of the hectic schedule and odd office timings most of the work force of the country still prefers the software and banking jobs. But a recent research report has pointed out that slowly the trend is shifting and more and more youth prefer offbeat careers. One such offbeat career which is not just fun but also helps you in earning well is ‘cosmetology’.

What is cosmetology?
Cosmetology can be defined as a study and application of beauty treatment. It is the science that majorly focuses on making people look good. There are multiple branches in cosmetology - beauty therapy and treatments for face, hair, body and overall health care-.

Who is a cosmetologist?
A cosmetologist is not just an expert in makeup but also in skin care, hair care and beauty products. Hairstylist and hairdresser, beautician, skin care specialist, aesthetician, nail technician all are called as cosmetologists.  

How to become a cosmetologist? 
Students who are interested to become a cosmetologist need to obtain certain educational and licensing requirements. With the right educational qualification and license, cosmetologists can work in several industries and may also be self-employed.

Educational requirements to become a cosmetologist
To become a cosmetologist there is no particular formal qualification, but a course in cosmetology can be done by individuals who are above 16 years of age and there are various diploma and other courses with specialisations that may result in earning an associate degree. Many polytechnics and vocational institutes offer courses in beauty care/cosmetology. Most people in this field continue to take courses that help them stay in line with the latest trends.

What are the job roles of a cosmetologist? 
The job roles range from the regular haircut, hair wash, perming, styling, colouring, and hair extensions to manicure, pedicure and facials It also includes applying makeup to spa and steam bath treatments Any job in the beauty industry with an intention to treat beauty related problems or abnormalities to restore natural appearance or to make people look good is done by a cosmetologist. Some are trained to administer medications for chronic conditions. 

What is the scope in the field of cosmetology? 
The career possibility in the industry of beauty is endless. This industry offers various careers for these professionals to excel and grow. It is a lucrative career option with earnings increasing with experience and reputation Trained cosmetologists find well paid jobs in beauty parlours, high-end salons and in luxurious hotels/resorts Makeup professionals are always in demand in television and film industries Also, they are in demand in the world of fashion Other options are being an image consultant, writing books or articles and teaching.

Top colleges/universities in India for Cosmetology 

  • National and Regional Vocational Training Institutes for Women (Ministry of Labour, Govt. of India) in Delhi, Noida, Allahabad, Mumbai, Kolkata, Vadodra, Hissar, Indore, Trivandrum, Tura.
  • YWCA centres in major cities (www.ywcaindia.org) VLCC Institute of Beauty, Health & Management, branches across the country - www.vlccnet.com) 
  • Shahnaz Husain's Women's World International, branches and franchises across the country (www.shahnaz.in) 
  • Habib's Hair Academy, branches and franchises across the country (www.habibs.org.in)
Abroad 

  • Empire Beauty School, Lauderhill, FL, USA A.B.I. 
  • School of Barbering & Cosmetology New York, NY , USA 
  • Aaron's Academy of Beauty, Waldorf, MD, USA 
  • Saint Paul College, Minnesota, USA
  •  Maryland Community College, Spruce Pine, North Carolina, USA 
With inputs from careerindia.com