Shearious Question: I recently left a corporate desk job after 25 years and am ready to go after my dream of owning a salon. I’m currently in school now taking night classes but want to see what life is like in a salon ASAP. Can I “intern” at a salon? What are my options?
Within the beauty and wellness industry internships are often referred to as apprenticeships. Working as an apprentice is a little different from the traditional intern perimeters. Let's walk through it.
It’s important to keep in mind that each state has its own laws and regulations regarding internships/apprenticeships. I suggest that you research your state's specific guidelines and speak with your school's admissions or job placement office before reaching out to a salon or spa.Whether you decide to do an actual apprenticeship or not, I think it’s a great idea to work at a salon or spa while you’re attending school. What better way to get a true sense of the industry and give you valuable experience to list onto your resume?
Keep in mind that each state’s requirements are different and without a license you may be limited to specific jobs or tasks that you can legally perform, but, don’t let that deter you.You might want to consider working as a Front Desk Coordinator. This will provide you with incredible insight into the day-to-day operations of a salon or spa. You can also work in a dispensary or backroom, providing light housekeeping, laundry, etc. I understand this job might not be so glamorous, but it will provide you with valuable knowledge of the salon and spa flow, organizational skills, and teamwork. And if retailing is your passion, working as a Retail Specialist within the salon or spa is a great opportunity to build customer service skills and gain knowledge of daily operations.
If you do decide to seek extra experience before graduating, schedule time to visit a local salon or spa for a tour and meet with the owner or manager. Advise the owner or manager that you are currently attending school and would love the opportunity to work at their salon/spa. Inquire if there are any positions available for front desk support, dispensary, or retailing. This is a win-win for you and the salon so hopefully, they welcome your willingness to help!
Working at the salon or spa while attending school is a powerful opportunity to help distinguish you from other soon graduates. Who knows? You might even find yourself securing a job as a service provider once you have graduated and are licensed because of the experience.
Photo: Shutterstock | Dasha Petrenko
How To Survive Your First Prom & Wedding Season As A Stylist
Shearious Questions: Handling Last Minute Add-Ons
Patti Wanamaker brings 21 years of experience to the Milady team where she currently serves as an Implementation and Training Specialist. Her intimate understanding of the salon, school, and beauty industry comes from 18 years of hands-on experience as a multi-faceted training specialist, including 8 years of salon and spa ownership of 3 salons with annual sales of $5 million. Her experience in all 3 areas of our industry allows her to think outside the box and develop innovative training that inspires and empowers beauty industry professionals.
Skin & Esthetics
For Future Professionals
Textbooks & Materials
State Board Practice Tests
Continuing Education (CE) Classes
Advertise with Us