Ultimate Guide Of Things To Include On Your Cosmetology Resume
Writing a resume can be particularly daunting, especially for those who have never had to write one before. If you are fresh out of cosmetology school, you are probably wondering how best to lay out your resume and what to include to give you the best chance of landing your first job.
At its simplest, the purpose of a resume is to showcase your skills, training and personal qualities to a prospective employer - in order to hopefully impress them and win the available position. They are usually the very first impression that a potential employer will have, so are incredibly important to your success.
Great resumes are well thought out and constructed in an easy to read, logical manner. They should break down your past into manageable chunks of information, so as not to make it too difficult for an employer to find what they are looking for.
In most cases, recruitment managers will not spend much more than a few seconds skimming over the pile of resumes on their desk. For this reason, it is imperative to have a resume that stands out. It should make clear your best attributes, as well as any special skills that will give you an edge over other applicants.
Cosmetology careers can be considered different in some ways from others because:
- It is a very competitive industry
- It requires continual education to stay up to date
- Stylists are expected to be passionate and a model example of their skills
Of course, people who pursue a career in cosmetology are naturally going to be passionate about beauty and fashion trends. On that basis, the only thing that can set you apart in the first instance, is the impression given by your resume.
By following our tips, you can be confident you will have a strong and impressive resume to help you achieve your dream job.
How To Structure Your Cosmetology Resume?
The very first thing your resume should include is a dedicated section at the top of the page. This is called the “header” and it is where you should put a clear and simple layout of your basic contact information.
Include your name, address, telephone number and email information. If you have any form of online portfolio or your own website/blog, you may want to include the links to these also.
Unlike recruitment in years gone by, a potential employer will often look at a candidate’s social presence. Therefore, if you have an instagram page that showcases your skill and has a large following, don’t be afraid to drop the link in your header. It could actually be something that helps you stand out from dozens of similar applicants.
Keep this header style uniform across all documentation you send out. It looks very professional and makes it exceedingly easy for employers to find your contact information. The last thing you want is to force a potential employer to search through your resume to find your telephone number!
Once you have created your header section, you can get right to the heart of the resume. It is good practice to begin with your skills and qualifications, as this is usually the first thing an employer will want to know. Then you can move on to any work history you have in the industry before listing your training, education and license information.
With regard to the appearance of your resume, try to stand out without looking over the top. Some resumes can seem mundane and boring, especially online templates that haven’t been tweaked or enhanced in any way.
Remember, cosmetology is a creative profession, full of color and beauty. Your resume shouldn’t look like a decorative party invitation, but at the same time, it should have a some flair about it.
You could consider printing your resume on pretty, high quality paper; using feminine fonts in your header and section titles. However, be careful to avoid any overly curly fonts that could be difficult to read. The objective is to draw attention while still looking professional and clean.
Lastly, make sure any font style choices stay uniform across your resume and cover letter. Don’t jump from one style to another as this will look messy and distract from the information on the pages.
What To Include In Your Cosmetology Resume.
Once you have got your styling and layout decided - it’s time to get down to business and start writing your resume.
Here is our guide of things to include that will make your resume stand out from the competition.
Basic Personal Information
The very first thing to be aware of when writing your resume is to ensure you put down your full legal name. Do not write your nickname or an alias. The employer will require your true identity when processing applications. If you do not put your full legal name, this could cause complications and confusion later - potentially losing you a position.
With regard to your home address, we recommend simply listing your city and state, rather than your full address. This is to limit the risk of identity theft when submitting your resume in mass applications online. Employers will understand this and it is perfectly acceptable to protect yourself in this way. If you are handing your resume in personally, or sending via post, you do not need to worry so much about this.
When it comes to your phone numbers, make sure you are writing down actual working numbers! It is surprising how many people make this mistake with their resumes and lose out as a result. Be sure to delete any unprofessional voicemail messages or call tone music you have on your phone. This is fine for your family and friends, but may put off a potential employer.
In the same vein, ensure your listed email address is appropriate: “email@example.com” or “firstname.lastname@example.org” is guaranteed to taint a potential employers opinion of you immediately. It is easy to create a simple and professional email address that will not make you look foolish.
Furthermore, when applying for jobs, be careful with what you put on your social media profiles if you include them. It is best to either keep them locked down to close friends only, or refrain from putting party photos up that may make you look like a troublesome candidate.
- Use full legal name
- Be careful of identity theft online
- Ensure you use correct contact numbers
- Have a professional email address
- Be wary of social media presence
Skills And Qualifications
This is possibly the most important section of your cosmetology resume. Your skills are your primary assets to your prospective employer; so you really should put extra effort into selling yourself here.
During this section, showcase all the things you have learned to do confidently during cosmetology school. Don’t be shy, the more valuable skills you list here, the more valuable you are to an employer.
Alongside your technical beauty skills and qualifications, don’t forget to include social and personal skills that are crucial to a salon and their clientele. Some of the additional skills you could include are:
Very often, when people feel down they will “treat themselves” to a new hairdo, facial or manicure to make themselves feel better. As a cosmetologist, your job is not only to help them look great, but feel great too. Having a cheerful attitude, good conversational skills, genuine smile and generally friendly demeanour is essential to retain clients. No salon wants to employ a miserable cosmetologist who drives away clients by making them feel unwelcome.
Make a point of stating how much you love interacting with and meeting new clients on a day to day basis. This will make the recruitment manager feel more confident that you will be a good representative of their business.
Creativity is vital to the work of a cosmetologist. You need to be able to look at your client and visualize what will work for them as an individual to look their best. The same makeup or hair style will not suit everyone, so cosmetologists must have an artistic streak that complements their technical skills.
Make sure to mention any transformative work you have done during your time at cosmetology school. Especially if you have been involved in a consultation and restyle process that completely changed a clients look.
Working in a salon or spa isn’t a walk in the park. Days can be very long and you will be expected to be on your feet for many hours at a time. Your arms and hands may feel tired after holding tools, styling hair and performing treatments all day. It is likely you will have days when you have to go from one client to another almost non-stop during busy times.
A prospective employer will want to know you are able to stand up and keep going on those busy days. Be sure to talk about any physical activities that you do in your spare time and use that to support your ability to power through crazy appointment books with smiles and stamina.
On most occasions, clients that come into the salon will have an idea what they are looking to achieve, but will not be able to describe it all too well. This means it is very important for a cosmetologist to be an effective listener, able to understand what a client is asking for.
Furthermore, salon and spa professionals are often those who clients will share personal secrets with and open up to. It is very important that this information is not shared so as to maintain trust.
Potential employers will be looking for someone who they can be confident will carefully listen to client needs. We recommend referring to yourself as someone who is a good and effective listener on your resume.
The best cosmetologists genuinely enjoy interacting with their clients and getting to know their particular needs and preferences. They create a welcoming atmosphere and always offer service with a smile. If there is ever a problem or a complaint, they deal with it in a professional and courteous manner. This is incredibly important to maintaining a successful business.
Make a point of talking about your customer service training and experiences while you were at cosmetology school. Emphasize your passion for making people happy and welcome. This will help your resume stand out and be attractive.
This section of your resume is a snapshot of either what you have achieved thus far as a professional - or what you are looking to achieve in the available role.
Fresh cosmetology graduates without a career history should write an objective relevant to the position they are applying for. This can also be featured in your header section or cover letter for convenience.
An example of an objective would be: “ I am a licensed cosmetologist seeking an entry level position with A2Z Salon in Miami, Florida where I will have the opportunity to bring my own clientele, continue to uphold the reputation and standards expected of A2Z Salon and provide top class customer service.”
It is important to keep this section short and succinct. You do not want to waffle on so that the reader loses interest, or feels you are unsure what you want.
Be mindful to look over the job description and really get the feel of what the employer is looking for in a candidate. Refer to your skills that match the vacancy requirements in your objective for maximum impact. Don’t come across as too cold and clinical though, it’s ok to show some personality!
Education And Training
In this section all that is required is a simple and well laid out list of your education history and technical training. You should format the list so that the most recent education and training is first, not last.
For example, if you have just left cosmetology school, you would list that school at the top of the list, followed by whichever high school you attended and so on. Any special training you have undertaken, such as one-off day specialist courses, should be included in this section too.
Lastly, if you have been awarded any honors or awards, you should certainly include them here.
- Cosmetology Program Graduate, Aveda Institute | 2017
- Eyelash Extension Course | 2016
- Hair Extensions Day Course | 2015
Licenses And Certifications
This part of your resume is crucial. Prospective employers need to know whether you hold a license to practice in their state before proceeding.
Make sure you are clear about which cosmetology licenses and certifications you currently hold. As before, put the most recent at the top of the list.
- Arizona Cosmetology License (2018)
- Certified Eyebrow Threading Specialist (2017)
- Certified Theatre Make-up Artist (2016)
If you have just graduated from cosmetology school, you may understandably balk at this section.
However, you really have more professional experience than you initially think. All through your cosmetology training you will have had interactions with real clients and performed many treatments. All of this counts!
Make a list in this section of all the different services and treatments you have performed upon paying clients in the school salon. This can be everything from womens and mens cuts, to makeovers and manicures. Talk about the process you would undertake during a consultation, and the relationship you built with the client. Don’t forget to include business experiences too, especially retail sales and customer services. Even helping with a stock take counts.
All of this will stand you well in the eyes of a potential employer.
- Provided clients with the following hair services - shampooing, cutting, colouring, styling, conditioning masks and scalp treatments.
- Helped the salon manager with the stock count and ordering process
- Increased retail sales by 15% in a single month by promoting ‘Treatment Tuesdays’.
- Showed exceptional customer service by sending birthday cards to our regular clients.
- Built and retained great client lists.
- Performed facials and face massages.
- Listened carefully to clients to ensure they get what they want.
If you have been employed previously, make sure to elaborate and use professional language when describing your responsibilities. For example say “I consulted with clients daily about their skin care regimen”, rather than “I talked to clients every day”. This makes you sound far more engaged in your work and therefore more employable.
If you have employment history to add, list most recent, or current first.
- Hair Stylist, Top Beauty Salon, Miami, FL | 2017
- Nail Technician, Star Salon, Miami, FL | 2016
Recording your accomplishments is very important to your resume. High achievers stand out from the pack, so don’t be shy to put down every beauty award you have won here. Hairdressing competitions, school honors, salon sales increases - all of these are worth their place on your resume.
- First place at the Miami Student Hair Style Awards
- “Most Creative Work” Award for Theatre Makeup
- Top Salon Retail Salesperson, AZ Salon.
Last but not least is the references section. This is usually one of the next steps an employer will take if they are interested in your application.
You do not need to list all your references here when first sending out your resume. In fact, it is much more common for applicants to add “references available upon request” within this section. This is perfectly acceptable and will not affect an employers opinion of your resume.
If you want to, you can list a few references of previous employers or educators here or on a separate page altogether depending upon space. Make sure you include their full legal name, job title, company, address and correct contact details.
So there you have it, our ultimate guide of things to include on your cosmetology resume. If you follow these tips closely and work hard, you are certain to land your dream cosmetology job in no time at all.