Category Archives: Iowa

Become a Cosmetologist | Cosmetology Schools Waterloo IA

How to Pick a Beauty School near Waterloo Iowa

nail technicians training at Waterloo IA beauty schoolOnce you have made a decision to become a cosmetologist and attend a beauty school near Waterloo IA, the task starts to search for and enroll in the best school. It’s imperative that the school you select not only furnishes the necessary instruction for the specialty you have chosen, but also readies you for passing the licensing examination. When you begin your preliminary search, you might be a little bit puzzled about the difference between beauty schools and cosmetology schools. Well don’t be, because the names are pretty much interchangeable and both refer to the same kind of school. We’ll discuss a bit further about that in the next section. If you intend on commuting to classes you will need to locate a school that is within driving distance of your Waterloo home. Tuition will also be an important aspect when assessing possible schools. Just bear in mind that because a school is the closest or the least expensive it’s not always the best choice. There are various other qualifications that you should evaluate when analyzing schools, such as their reputation and accreditation. We will review what questions you should ask concerning the cosmetology schools you are thinking about later in this article. Before we do, let’s talk a little bit about what cosmetology is, and what kinds of courses are available.

Defining Cosmetology

Waterloo IA makeup ar4tist applying makeupCosmetology is an occupation that is all about making the human body look more beautiful with the use of cosmetics. So naturally it makes sense that numerous cosmetology schools are described as beauty schools. Many of us think of makeup when we hear the word cosmetics, but really a cosmetic may be almost anything that improves the look of a person’s skin, hair or nails. If you want to work as a cosmetologist, almost all states require that you take some form of specialized training and then become licensed. Once you are licensed, the work settings include not only Waterloo IA beauty salons and barber shops, but also such places as spas, hotels and resorts. Many cosmetologists, once they have acquired experience and a client base, open their own shops or salons. Others will start seeing customers either in their own homes or will travel to the client’s home, or both. Cosmetology college graduates are known by many professional names and are employed in a wide range of specializations including:

  • Hairdressers
  • Hairstylists
  • Beauticians
  • Barbers
  • Manicurists
  • Nail Technicians
  • Makeup Artists
  • Hair Coloring Specialists
  • Estheticians
  • Electrolysis Technicians

As previously mentioned, in most states practicing cosmetologists have to be licensed. In a few states there is an exemption. Only those conducting more skilled services, such as hairstylists, are required to be licensed. Other people employed in cosmetology and less skilled, which include shampooers, are not required to get licensed in those states.

Cosmetology Degrees and Certificates

Waterloo IA hairdresser cutting hairThere are essentially two pathways available to receive cosmetology training and a credential upon completion. You can enroll in a certificate (or diploma) program, or you can work toward an Associate’s degree. Certificate programs usually take 12 to 18 months to finish, while an Associate’s degree commonly takes about 2 years. If you enroll in a certificate program you will be instructed in all of the main areas of cosmetology. Shorter programs are offered if you want to concentrate on just one area, for instance hair coloring. A degree program will also most likely incorporate management and marketing training in order that graduates are better prepared to manage a salon or other Waterloo IA business. More advanced degrees are not prevalent, but Bachelor and Master’s degree programs are offered in such specialties as salon or spa management. Whatever type of training program you choose, it’s imperative to make certain that it’s certified by the Iowa Board of Cosmetology. Many states only certify schools that are accredited by certain reputable agencies, for instance the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS). We will review the benefits of accreditation for the school you select in the next segment.

Online Beauty Classes

student attending cosmetology school online in Waterloo IAOnline cosmetology programs are convenient for Waterloo IA students who are employed full time and have family responsibilities that make it difficult to attend a more traditional school. There are many web-based beauty school programs available that can be attended via a desktop computer or laptop at the student’s convenience. More traditional beauty schools are frequently fast paced since many programs are as brief as 6 or 8 months. This means that a substantial portion of time is spent in the classroom. With online courses, you are dealing with the same volume of material, but you are not devoting many hours away from your home or commuting to and from classes. However, it’s imperative that the program you select can provide internship training in area salons and parlors so that you also get the hands-on training needed for a complete education. Without the internship part of the training, it’s impossible to gain the skills needed to work in any facet of the cosmetology field. So be sure if you choose to enroll in an online program to confirm that internship training is available in your area.

Questions to Ask Cosmetologist Training Classes

Questions to ask Waterloo IA beauty schoolsBelow is a series of questions that you need to look into for any cosmetologist training program you are considering. As we have already covered, the location of the school in relation to your Waterloo IA home, in addition to the price of tuition, will most likely be your initial qualifiers. Whether you want to earn a certificate, diploma or a degree will no doubt be next on your list. But once you have reduced your school options based on those preliminary qualifications, there are additional factors that you need to research and take into consideration before enrolling in a cosmetology school. Below we have compiled some of those supplemental questions that you should ask each school before making a final selection.

Is the Program Accredited? It’s important to make certain that the cosmetology school you enroll in is accredited. The accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education recognized local or national agency, such as the National Accrediting Commission for Cosmetology Arts & Sciences (NACCAS). Schools accredited by the NACCAS must measure up to their high standards assuring a superior curriculum and education. Accreditation can also be necessary for securing student loans or financial aid, which often are not obtainable in 50701 for non- accredited schools. It’s also a prerequisite for licensing in some states that the training be accredited. And as a final benefit, many Waterloo IA employers will not hire recent graduates of non-accredited schools, or may look more positively upon individuals with accredited training.

Does the School have an Excellent Reputation?  Each beauty college that you are seriously evaluating should have a good to exceptional reputation within the profession. Being accredited is a good starting point. Next, ask the schools for endorsements from their network of businesses where they have placed their students. Check that the schools have high job placement rates, signifying that their students are highly sought after. Check rating services for reviews as well as the school’s accrediting agencies. If you have any relationships with Waterloo IA salon owners or managers, or someone working in the industry, ask them if they are acquainted with the schools you are reviewing. They might even be able to recommend others that you had not looked into. And last, consult the Iowa school licensing authority to find out if there have been any grievances filed or if the schools are in full compliance.

What’s the School’s Focus?  Some cosmetology schools offer programs that are comprehensive in nature, concentrating on all areas of cosmetology. Others are more focused, providing training in a particular specialty, for instance hairstyling, manicuring or electrolysis. Schools that offer degree programs commonly expand into a management and marketing curriculum. So it’s imperative that you pick a school that focuses on your area of interest. If your intention is to be trained as an esthetician, make sure that the school you enroll in is accredited and respected for that program. If your dream is to start a hair salon in Waterloo IA, then you want to enroll in a degree program that will instruct you how to be an owner/operator. Choosing a highly ranked school with a weak program in the specialty you are pursuing will not deliver the training you require.

Is Plenty of Live Training Provided?  Practicing and refining cosmetology techniques and abilities demands plenty of practice on volunteers. Ask how much live, hands-on training is provided in the cosmetology courses you will be attending. Some schools have salons on campus that allow students to practice their developing skills on volunteers. If a beauty school offers minimal or no scheduled live training, but rather relies predominantly on utilizing mannequins, it may not be the most effective alternative for developing your skills. Therefore try to find other schools that offer this kind of training.

Does the School Provide Job Assistance?  Once a student graduates from a beauty program, it’s imperative that she or he gets assistance in landing that initial job. Job placement programs are an important part of that process. Schools that furnish help develope relationships with Waterloo IA employers that are looking for skilled graduates available for hiring. Check that the schools you are looking at have job placement programs and ask which salons and organizations they refer students to. Also, find out what their job placement rates are. Higher rates not only confirm that they have extensive networks of employers, but that their programs are highly regarded as well.

Is Financial Aid Offered?  Almost all cosmetology schools offer financial aid or student loan assistance for their students. Ask if the schools you are investigating have a financial aid office. Talk to a counselor and find out what student loans or grants you might get approved for. If the school is a member of the American Association of Cosmetology Schools (AACS), it will have scholarships available to students also. If a school satisfies each of your other qualifications with the exception of cost, do not discard it as an alternative until you determine what financial help may be available.

Enrolled in Cosmetology School near Waterloo IA?

If you have decided to attend Beauty School in the greater Waterloo IA area, following is some interesting and perhaps useful information about the location of your new school campus.

Waterloo, Iowa

Waterloo is a city in and the county seat of Black Hawk County, Iowa, United States.[4] As of the 2010 United States Census the population decreased by 0.5% to 68,406;[5] the 2016 Census estimates the population at 67,934, making it the sixth-largest city in the state.[3] The city is part of the Waterloo – Cedar Falls Metropolitan Statistical Area, and is the more populous of the two cities.

Waterloo was originally known as Prairie Rapids Crossing.[6] The town was established near two Meskwaki American tribal seasonal camps alongside the Cedar River. It was first settled in 1845 when George and Mary Melrose Hanna and their children arrived on the east bank of the Red Cedar River (now just called the Cedar River). They were followed by the Virden and Mullan families in 1846. Evidence of these earliest families can still be found in the street names Hanna Boulevard, Mullan Avenue and Virden Creek.

The name Waterloo supplanted the original name, Prairie Rapids Crossing, shortly after Charles Mullan petitioned for a post office in the town. Since the signed petition did not include the name of the proposed post office location, Mullan was charged with selecting the name when he submitted the petition. Tradition has it that as he flipped through a list of other post offices in the United States, he came upon the name Waterloo. The name struck his fancy, and on December 29, 1851, a post office was established under that name. The town was later called the same, and Mullan served as the first postmaster from December 29, 1851 until August 11, 1854.

Select the Right Cosmetologist College near Waterloo IA

Waterloo IA barber blow drying client's hairSelecting and enrolling in the right cosmetology program is important to obtain the appropriate training to become a licensed cosmetology technician. Be sure to ask all the questions that you need to in order to feel certain about your decision. Don’t forget to consolidate all of the responses you get from the beauty school admissions departments, prioritize what matters the most to you, and then utilize that data to contrast schools. A reasonable beginning in your due diligence process is to make sure that the academy and program you decide on are accredited and have impressive reputations within the field. If you start with that base, and address the additional questions presented in this article, you will be able to narrow down your list of schools so that you can make the ideal selection. And when you graduate and pass your licensing exam, you will be confident that you are ready to start your career as a professional cosmetologist in Waterloo IA.

Other Beautiful Locations in Iowa

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