Many MUAs see hair styling as a separate field entirely, but play your cards right and hair styling can be your secret weapon. The makeup industry is a tough market with plenty of competition. Without upping your game and adding to your qualifications and skillset, how can you hope to stand out from the crowd? Hair styling classes are one of your best assets to do this!
That being said, watching YouTube videos and possessing a natural ability to do a French braid aren’t going to be enough to add this additional service to your business. That alone won’t make you a pro. Like makeup artistry, hair styling doesn’t necessarily require schooling or certification – but having it not only makes YOU better, it better qualifies you when compared to others who don’t have it themselves.
But we get it: you have your hesitations. In fact, you’re probably thinking, is it really worth shelling out more money to take a hair styling class? It can’t benefit my makeup business that much, can it?
Well, let’s see about that. First, it’s important to quickly understand what exactly a hair stylist is, and what they do.
What is a Hair Stylist?
Is “hair stylist” just another term for a hair dresser?
NO! (We seriously can’t stress this enough.)
The two are completely different, and require entirely separate training, qualifications, and certification. In addition to styling, hair dressers are qualified to cut, color, bleach, and apply extensions to hair. A cosmetology license is usually required to be a hair dresser, which takes anywhere from 1 to 2 years to obtain.
As a hair stylist, you are NOT allowed to do anything but wash, dry, and/or style your client’s hair. You’ll learn how to use various heat tools, and master a number of different brush and styling techniques.
Here are 4 reasons why it would NOT be in your best interest to add hair styling services to your MUA business…
1. You don’t want to book more clients
In today’s age, Millennials and Gen Xers have enough money problems thanks to the economy, so they’re always more than happy to save their pennies whenever possible. This is just a fact: your clients are always going to be looking for ways to combine or decrease their expenses. Who wouldn’t jump at the chance to save some cash?
Chances are, in addition to your makeup services, you client is also in need of a hairstylist for her big event. This means an extra expense she has to pay for, more time she has to put aside for a separate appointment, etc. But if you were able to offer her BOTH makeup and hair styling services, she’d probably book you for that additional service in a heartbeat. It’s just a much more convenient and cost-effective option for her.
This is especially true with brides. The day of the wedding is hectic and stressful enough as it is for her! When researching her options for MUAs and hair stylists, who do you think she’ll be more inclined to want to book with: one makeup artist and another hair stylist, or an amazing makeup artist who’s also a hair stylist?
Point is, being able to offer both makeup and hair styling services would open doors to so many more potential clients. It would provide you with a niche that’s GUARANTEED to make you stand out from your competition in the area, in all the best ways. We think you’d find that it wouldn’t take long before you’d be so busy, you’d have to start booking clients in advance!
2. You don’t want to make more money
When you can offer more services to your clients, you’ll naturally be able to increase your income – that’s Business 101. You very well might already be making good money with your makeup services alone, but think of how much more you could bring in every month by adding in hair styling services as well!
One option is that you could offer standalone hair styling prices and services, same as how you set your makeup rates. Simpler hairstyles, such as basic up-dos, will be cheaper. The fancier the hairstyle, the more you can charge. That being said, even just the basic services (like washing and drying your client’s hair) can give you an additional $30+ from that one job.
Or, if your client wished to have both her hair and makeup done by you, you could also offer packaged deals. These sorts of options would further entice potential clients to want to work with you. Everyone loves bundles! For instance, Brinelley Hair and Makeup in Baltimore, Maryland, charges $250 for bridal hair and makeup as a packaged service.
When it comes to the various ways you can package these additional services, the sky’s the limit! But one thing’s for certain: it WILL increase your total income and bring you in more money.
3. You don’t like having options
We’ve touched on quite a few ways that adding hair styling to your makeup business benefits your career as a freelance MUA. But what about those interested in working in a salon?
The good news is that such a skill is just as much of an asset to salon managers, too! If their establishment is in need of hair stylists as well as makeup artists, hiring someone who can do both is one less body they need to staff and provide salary to. Plus, you have wiggle room to negotiate your pay and perhaps ask for a higher salary than you would’ve gotten just as an MUA. For the level of services you’d be capable of providing, it’d be more than fair, and many salon managers will recognize that!
Even if you don’t have any goals to work in a salon, the fact that it would at least be an option available to you is a more than a many other makeup artists out there could say. If nothing else, it strengthens your portfolio and equips you with a pretty solid resume.
4. You hate school
That’s not to say that you don’t love your craft, or even that you don’t like learning new things. But when it comes to an actual school environment, with assignments, and reading, and lessons? No thanks. You’re of the opinion that anything you can learn in a class, you can learn all by yourself on the internet for free.
We’re sorry to say it, but if that’s how you feel, you’re really limiting yourself in terms of your abilities. You’ll never be able to learn from an article or video tutorial the skills, techniques, and theories you’d be taught in school. For starters, there will be things you don’t know until they’re taught to you – so how would you know to research them on your own? You wouldn’t. Your self-taught education would be filled with a lot of self-imposed blind spots.
Schooling is the best method of acquiring information because its entire purpose is to take an expert who knows the ins and outs of the profession, and use their knowledge to help YOU learn and grow. So sure, school may not be your thing… But if this is truly the industry you want to work in, the results are worth it and second to none.