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Sunday, 29 April 2018

Beauty Therapy Course- The Trilogy

When I first started my journey into becoming a Beauty Therapist, a blog post like this would have been so helpful! So, I decided that after 3 years of hard work I could talk you through my journey to hopefully inspire and most importantly, educate any aspiring Beauty Therapists out there to know exactly what this course involves. So sit back, get a snack and prepare yourself for a long post....

It all began by applying to College through my Secondary School and I knew that I needed a grade C in English and Science to achieve a place on the course. I attended an interview date to meet my future tutors and it allowed us to get to know each other a little better. I remember being extremely nervous as I’d never had an interview before and went in not knowing what to expect. She asked me a few questions such as- “Tell me about yourself” and “Why do you want to be a beauty therapist?”. A few months passed, I had finished my GCSEs (with the grades I needed) and I had to order my uniform and kit online. When everything arrived it finally felt real and I was very much looking forward to this next chapter in my life.

I don’t have any memories of my first day of college but I know I was the most nervous I had ever been. I had bought myself a giant folder for any handouts that were given, a pencil case full of pens and felt tips and a diary to note any assignment due dates. On the first day I’m sure we would have focused on getting to know everyone in the class and spoke about what the course consists of.

 The treatments I learnt during level 1 were; Basic Manicures & Pedicures, Skincare, Themed face painting, Makeup and Creating an image. I attended college 3 days a week and had a mixture of 3 hour practical sessions and theory classes. I knew straight away that this was the career for me as I picked everything up so easily- the practical lessons were educational yet fun, the theory was very interesting to me and I loved writing assignments. It also became apparent that this course was difficult, the work load was plentiful and it involved a lot of creativity. One of my favourite things about level 1 was moodboards. We had two ‘Create an Image’ assessments- I did an 80s Bridal look and a Fairy. It allowed us to use our creativity to plan an outfit, hair and makeup look for our chosen theme. We also trained in face painting, which was something different that I didn’t expect from beauty therapy. It was messy, entertaining and quite hilarious to make my friends look like spider man or a mythical tiger.  This year we had a week for enrichment which involved training in extra courses which was a great opportunity to fill up our CVs. I chose to do a makeup artistry course and gel nails.

In order to achieve a Level 1 Beauty Therapy Diploma we had to put together a portfolio which had paperwork for every practical assessment we had gained. We would have pre and final assessments and our final assessment grade (pass, merit or distinction) would be the overall grade on our certificate. We did not work with many 'real' clients during level 1 as we mainly practiced on fellow students, so going into Level 2 I was nervous to know that all assessments had to be done on paying customers.
Following the completion of level 1 I attended an interview to progress to the next level of Beauty Therapy. In this interview two of the lecturers asked a series of questions regarding why I wanted to continue training as a therapist and what my plans for the future were. I expressed my love for the industry and that I hope to continue on Level 2 and 3 and eventually have my own business in the future. A few days later, in the post, I received my offer of placement for Level 2 Beauty therapy and I couldn't have been happier.

After a fabulous summer it was time to go back to college and begin my second year of studies. We had a new uniform and a kit with all new products and tools. I arrived at class with my perfectly neat bun and a makeup look I had spent an hour on, ready to show my tutors how excited I was for this new year.
During level 2 we studied; Manicure, Pedicure, Facials, Eye Treatments (Brow & Lash Tint, Lash Extensions, Brow Shaping) Waxing (Bikini Line, Half/ Full Leg, Underarm, Forearm, Lip and Chin, Eyebrow), Create An Image and Makeup Application.

I think that Level 2 was a great year and I made some wonderful friends in the class. Much like Level 1 we had a portfolio with all of our practical assessments and exam results/ assignments. This year there were many more practical assessments and an exam for each subject, so I knew that I had to work extremely hard.  Most importantly, we had to work on 'real' clients. I had always been quite a shy, timid girl therefore having to work on clients was a little daunting to me. Nonetheless, I took on the challenge as I thought eventually it would become second nature, which it did. I wanted to do every client possible as I loved pampering them and getting good feedback after my treatments. I loved doing manicures/ pedicures, eyebrow/lash tinting and facials however I must admit that most students weren't looking forward to waxing as I think we were all a little bit reserved. I completely loved facials, still it did take me a while to learn the full massage routine and my hands did ache for the first few times practicing it.

For my Create an Image I chose a Unicorn. I spent ages creating a moodboard, I bought bright pink spray on hair dye and a unicorn headband. I had a pleasant time creating my look this year as I felt my makeup skills had improved greatly and I had so much more confidence in myself as a therapist. This year for enrichment I picked Sienna X spray tanning and Eyelash perming which again were great additions to the CV.
When it came to exam season I was apprehensive to say the least. Exams had never been my strong point and the hardest part was revising and not knowing what questions they may even ask. I think I passed half the exams and ending up doing written assignments for the ones I failed. I didn't mind though, as I love writing and assignments were quite enjoyable for me. 

At the beginning of the year I was concerned about finishing the course in time, knowing how many practical assessments we had to complete, however I got through them rapidly (because of my eagerness to take clients) and ended up being the first to finish. That allowed me to sit and revise ready for Level 3.

I attended my Interview for Level 3 with two of my tutors and unravelled that even though I hadn't been offered a place yet, truth be told I had already been revising. At my college there were three different routes to Level 3. It was either; Electrical, Spa or Media Makeup Artistry. I spoke to a variety of the previous Level 3 students whilst modelling for them during my second year as I wanted advice to which route I should choose. I had always had a huge passion for skincare and facials therefore the Electrical route seemed the obvious choice. When speaking to one of the students she explained how thankful she was that she chose the electrical route nevertheless she made it evident how difficult the course was. Now finishing the course I can also accentuate how strenuous and demanding the course can be, although It has been my most favourite year out of them all.

The treatments were studied were; Electrical Facials (High Frequency, Microcurrent, Microdermabrasion, Faradic, Galvanic, Vacuum Suction), Electrical Body Treatments (Microcurrent, Faradic, Galvanic, Vacuum Suction, High Frequency), Body Massage and Electrolysis. As you can see, that meant a whole lot of learning and training for these new electrical machines. It seemed impossible at the beginning of the year, yet after hours of work in the library I am now knowledgeable and trained to perform every one of those treatments and I couldn't be prouder. This year we were lucky enough to have 4 three hour practical sessions, one of those being time to perform and perfect our level 2 treatments. I found this to be beneficial to enhance my quality of treatment ready for going out into industry. We also had a theory class in which we learnt all of the anatomy and physiology however that simply was not enough time to learn it all, which indicated the importance of home study. My portfolio this year was as heavy as ever with all of my practical assessments and in the same way as before we had exams for every single topic. I can contemptuously say that I have passed every single exam and I could not be more thrilled after how diligent I have been. It truly shows how hard work gives results. I believe that after three years at college, my self-confidence and assertiveness has boosted and I am ready to start my career in the beauty industry and continue to grow and learn as a therapist.

  • Practice at home to enhance your quality of treatment 
  • Take every opportunity to work on clients 
  • Organise and take pride in your portfolio 
  • Take satisfaction in your personal presentation and feel proud to wear your uniform
  • Revise & make sure you're educated so you can provide the best advice to your clients 
  • Practice and try different selling techniques to sell products 
  • Create aftercare leaflets for clients and pre-prepare your consultation cards
  • Be passionate and explain the treatments fully to your clients
  • Continue learning and growing as a therapist

Congratulations if you've read this far! Thankyou for reading and I hope you found this post somewhat informative or helpful in any way possible. If you have any questions feel free to comment below or sent me a tweet -@jodielbeauty.

With love,

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