Thinking of taking an online makeup course? QC Makeup Academy Student Ambassador and alumnus, Nadia Calabro, is here to tell you the top 11 things to look for when researching online makeup schools!
Why Are Online Makeup Schools So Popular Nowadays?
When I made the decision to go back to school and follow my dreams of becoming a professional makeup artist, I’ll admit it: I was worried. How was I supposed to be a busy mom and be able to start a new career?
In-person classes wouldn’t be possible. So, the only option I had was to look into online makeup schools. This way, I would be able to do both. I can tell, you now, with complete certainty, that was the best decision I ever made!
Through my online makeup courses, I was able to study at any time and do my work from anywhere. QC Makeup Academy gives their students two years to complete their course, so there was no pressure on me to get through my studies quickly.
The independence provided by online makeup schools is ideal for anyone who:
- Has a busy lifestyle
- Doesn’t have access to brick-and-mortar classes
- Learns better in a solo environment (while still being able to connect directly with their tutors and fellow classmates online)
- Wishes to train at their own pace
- Doesn’t want to risk exposure to COVID-19
My QC makeup courses worked for me because I never felt like I had to keep up with anyone else. If there was a unit or area that I felt I needed more time and practice with, I was able to give myself that time. That way, I could make sure that I was doing it to the best of my ability.
Perks of Online Makeup Schools
Going back to school when you already have a full-time job – and in my case, a family as well – can seem scary. It can especially seem a bit daunting financially. One awesome thing about online makeup schools is that they’re typically much cheaper than in-person classes.
Note: Keep in mind that I can only speak to my experience with QC Makeup Academy. But when doing your research into all of your options, you’ll find this to be similar with plenty of other online makeup schools as well.
Personally, I was surprised to see that online makeup schools were actually more affordable. Some people may think that a lower tuition must mean a lower quality of schooling, but I can tell you that with the right school, this is NOT the case! Through QC Makeup Academy, I’ve received the same education – if not better – than what I would have received by attending an in-person school.
The text materials are dense and detailed; outlining each topic with extreme care and precision. There are also instructional videos to go along with each technique and lesson. I found these to be extremely easy to follow. Since they contain close-ups, you get a perfect view of the work being done.
The final step of each unit is to complete a hands-on assignment, wherein you must perform the techniques you’ve learned on a real-life model. This kind of practice not only ensures that you’re getting properly prepared to work in the real world; it’s also a perfect way for your tutor to gauge:
- How well you’re understanding the materials
- Where you’re strengths are
- Where you can improve
This way, they can provide you with detailed audio feedback after each unit!
Even before the pandemic, there has always been a need for online schooling. For one reason or another, many people prefer this method of education to its physical counterpart. But as we all know, the world we live in right now is unlike any other we have ever seen.
Many of us have no option but to do as much as we can from the safety of our own homes. Without online makeup schools like QC Makeup Academy, it would be impossible right now to start building a career for ourselves. Our lives and job aspirations would be at a standstill.
That Being Said…
There have always been online makeup schools, but when it comes to the internet, there have always been scammers, too. It’s critical to do your research when looking into any online makeup courses and institutions. Here are just a few shady red flags I urge you to watch out for:
1 – Suspiciously low tuition rates – remember, you get what you pay for!
For example, while QC Makeup Academy is very reasonably-priced, it’s still comparable to other online makeup schools. Don’t simply go for the online course that is cheapest! Similarly, be wary of ‘schools’ that say they can teach you everything you need to know at a suspiciously low price. This is often a big indicator that the quality of education is low, and you won’t be getting proper training.
2 – Courses that are all multiple choice quizzes and no hands-on training!
It’s always important to know the theory component of your schooling. But as a professional makeup artist, you will not be in the real world talking about makeup – you’ll be applying it. So, make sure that you enroll in an online makeup school where there is actually an emphasis on hands-on work.
3 – Needing to pay an extra fee to ‘buy’ your certification upon course completion!
This sort of school is a scam – full stop. Once you’ve paid for your course and put in all the work, there should be NO reason for you to have to pay extra in order to obtain your certificate/certifications. These should naturally be included within your course tuition.
4 – Lack of information on the school’s website!
A reputable makeup school will always have a professional website with all of the information you need. These details will be clear and properly laid out for you. It shouldn’t omit vital information or send you on a wild goose chase in order to find it on their site.
5 – No way to contact the school’s Support Team (or anyone, for that matter)!
There should always be an easy way to contact the school’s Support Team, as well as your tutors. Their responses should be reasonably quick and answer all of the questions you have.
6 – Lack of social media presence!
We live in a world where social media is everything. These days, nearly all reputable online makeup schools will have some sort of social media presence. If the school you’re looking into doesn’t, it might be worth it to look elsewhere.
7 – Suspicious reviews!
Fake reviews, mostly negative reviews, and no reviews at all are red flags!
When researching online makeup schools, always look into their reviews. Make sure that the reviews are credible. Pay close attentions to reviews left by current and formers students of that institution. If most of the students are reporting negative experiences, this should be a HUGE deciding factor for you.
8 – The school isn’t accredited!
This seems like an obvious one, but it’s still commonly overlooked. Just because a school has a social media page and website does NOT mean they are properly accredited. Online makeup schools that aren’t accredited are the ones you should be staying away from. So, take the time to verify this – and always go with a school that’s accredited!
What to Look For in Online Makeup Schools
I know, I know. The list we just covered seems like a lot of things to look out. Right now, you might be thinking, “Okay, so how can picking an online makeup school be a bit LESS daunting?”
Well, by knowing the criteria that all trustworthy online makeup schools SHOULD have! If the school you’re looking at provides the following 11 things, it may be the school for you!
1 – Proper accreditation
QC Makeup Academy, for example, holds an A+ ranking from the Better Business Bureau. This is a huge selling point for any online makeup school! If they hold this kind of ranking, you know they are the real deal.
2 – How long the school’s been in business
That’s not to say that relatively new schools shouldn’t be trusted. However, online makeup schools that have been around longer tend to have a bit stronger of a reputation, more rounded out course curriculums, and a larger list of alumni.
QC Makeup Academy has been a leader in online learning since 1984! I think it’s safe to say that a school that’s been successfully running for this long and continue to hold tight to their standings is an online makeup school that works!
3 – The courses themselves are of the highest quality
The best online makeup school will offer high-quality curriculums and learning materials. They’ll ensure you get exactly what you’re paying for! For instance, when you apply to QC Makeup Academy, you receive a physical copy of your course materials (as well as online access to the electronic materials). If your course includes some sort of makeup kit, you’ll receive that in the mail, too.
The text materials are jam-packed with all of the information you’ll need throughout your career. On top of this, QC students and grads are given lifelong access to their digital course materials, tutorial videos, coursework, and tutor feedback. Having this kind of unlimited access is a HUGE benefit, as you’ll always have a place to turn when you need a:
- Refresher on makeup techniques, theory, applications, etc.
- Reminder on the areas you need to improve on
- Reminder on where your strengths are
4 – You’ll receive a reputable certification or certificate upon graduating
There was one thing in particular that stood out to me about QC Makeup Academy: the fact that their certifications and certificates are internationally recognized. This means that graduates will have the ability to work internationally. Online makeup schools that can help open the doors to a wide range of job opportunities is what you should be looking for!
5 – There is some level of business training involved
If you want to start your own business someday, then logically, you’re going to need to know how to run a business. If you have no prior experience with this, online makeup schools that include a business component in their courses is a must!
QC’s courses have an optional unit entirely devoted to business training. As part of this unit, you’ll learn how to research real businesses around you in order to find comparable pricing and learn more about the local competition. You’ll also have the opportunity to plan your own business! You’ll create a business name, a target audience, and begin to build a portfolio for yourself.
While QC’s business unit is optional, I strongly recommend taking advantage of it. It’s the greatest way to prepare you to launch a successful career!
6 – Tutors are real, working makeup artists
This is a no-brainer! You wouldn’t study to become a doctor by training under someone whose only prior experience was binging Grey’s Anatomy, would you?
The same thought process should be applied to who you choose to learn makeup artistry from!
All of QC Makeup Academy’s tutors are industry professionals with years of experience under their belts. They have worked at makeup counters, own their own freelance businesses, have lent their expertise to fashion and award shows, and have even worked with celebrities! With this much experience behind them, there is no area that they cannot give advice on. The right tutors can prepare you for ANY path you want to take your career on!
7 – The school’s website is thorough, comprehensive, and informative
QC’s website is a perfect example! It provides in-depth information about:
- All of their available courses;
- The history of the school
- Tuition rates;
- Tutor profiles;
- Student and grad success stories;
- Contact information;
- And so much more!
Everything that you need or want to know about the school is perfectly and clearly laid out.
8 – The school has some sort of social media presence (bonus points if they post original content on a regular basis!)
QC Makeup Academy can be found across all major social media platforms, including Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest, and Twitter. They have thousands of followers, and are constantly creating new, original content.
I also love how they’re always posting student/grad success stories, and sharing their work on their Instagram and Facebook. It’s great when online makeup schools appreciate and showcase the hard work of their students! It reiterates how much that school truly cares – while also allowing their students to gain more exposure and potential job opportunities!
9 – There are lots of great reviews
QC’s website reflects countless positive reviews. They also have a 4.9 rating on Facebook. It’s easy to see that the many students who have attended QC have had great success within their courses – and even more importantly, in their careers!
10 – You can easily contact the school’s Support Team
Reputable online makeup schools will have a team ready and willing to assist you, provide more information, etc. QC’s website clearly provides 3 different ways to contact their Student Support Specialist Team:
- Live chat
Support is available internationally, and is also available via social media as well. The team is known to respond promptly and thoroughly to all inquiries. With such a wide range of ways to gain support, students never feel alone. They’re always able to resolve any issue they may have quickly and with ease.
11 – You can connect with REAL students and alumni
Before investing your money into an online makeup school, you might want to first talk to real people who have enrolled, in order to find out how their experiences were. This is a smart idea, and one I highly recommend!
This is why I personally love the fact that QC Makeup Academy has a Virtual Classroom on Facebook. This is a private group where students and grads from around the world can come together and connect. It’s also a place where prospective students can go for a 2-week trial). This way, you can chat with real students, see how QC operates, and get a clear idea of whether it’s the right school for you – BEFORE spending any money!
Finding the right makeup school is the first step towards building the future of your dreams. In order to make sure you’re starting your journey on the right foot, put in the work. Research online makeup schools to find the best one for you!
I did my research, and I can tell you without a doubt that QC has been the best choice for me. Don’t believe me? Try it for yourself!