Expert Advice

The Skinny On Salon Jobs: A Beauty Mentor for Students Who Need Beginning Advice and Career Stylists Who Need a Shot of Inspiration

Carlos Valenzuela | April 7, 2017 | 3:20 PM

You had the best recipe for chocolate cake, but Mary does not eat gluten--so you make it gluten free, Joan needs low carb--you use almond flour, no sugar for Barry, and Joe is allergic to chocolate--you use artificial flavor. The intention is valid, but it tastes awful.

 Beauty school training may have started out with the best intentions, but the state imposed requirements, added pre-requisites, qualifications and testing. Next, the accrediting commission weighed in with stricter standards, and finally the department of education insisted on burdensome government guidelines. Add to this a diminishing number of salons offering school to salon training. The intention is valid, but fails to produce graduates for today’s salon needs. 

 As a former school owner, I feel for the student who asks for a job at our salon without the interviewing, technical or social skills needed for the job. Although I felt badly, I was powerless--until now.

 Over a year ago, I started writing The Skinny On Salon Jobs. I visited beauty schools and interviewed those who left the profession the first year after graduation (estimated at eighty percent). I tried to not point a finger at anyone because that never works—at the same time, I worked with beautiful young people to craft appealing wording suitable for today’s student. I knew it needed to be portable for use on a cell phone. It couldn’t be preachy or lengthy—more like small chunks of information punctuated with short videos. In addition, it had to be affordable. I knew I wouldn’t make money on it, but that’s ok.

 The Skinny on Salon Jobs is a conversation with a benevolent, often strict, beauty mentor who badly wants to guide the reader to success by telling them where the rocks are. For experienced professionals, it is a conversation starter on how to overhaul our industry’s basic training.

It’s impossible to offer solutions without stepping on toes. No matter what part you play, you are big enough to step back and realize that this cake tastes awful, and work to create solutions that benefit a learner’s job entry skills. After all, these are our industry’s future leaders. I offer The Skinny as a starter.

Purchase The Skinny on Salon Jobs:

Carlos Valenzuela has forty-plus years in the professional beauty industry as a consultant, stylist, trainer, author and entrepreneur and is author of The Skinny on Salon Jobs. [email protected]


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