Do you have a passion for styling hair, applying skincare products, doing manicures and just helping others feel good about how they look? If so, you may find a career as a cosmetologist a perfect fit. Here you will find all the vital information you need about how to become a cosmetologist in Washington as well as a list of approved cosmetology schools in Washington.
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To become a cosmetologist in Washington, you must obtain certification or licensure through the Washington State Department of Licensing. Before you can apply for a license, you must complete a state-approved training program and pass a written and practical examination. The field of cosmetology includes hair stylists, cosmetologists, estheticians, skincare specialists and nail technicians.
For a cosmetology program to be state-approved, it must meet the requirements for hours of training. In some cases, the individual may be hired without the formal training if he or she has completed an apprenticeship and the required hours. Below are the hours of training required for the various occupations within the cosmetology field.
- Cosmetologist – 1,600 hours (2,000 hours for apprenticeship)
- Manicurist – 600 hours (800 hours for apprenticeship)
- Esthetician (skincare specialist) – 750 hours (800 hours for apprenticeship)
- Barber – 1,000 hours – (1,200 hours for apprenticeship)
- Master esthetician – 1,200 hours (1,400 hours for apprenticeship)
You must also be at least 17 years old to work as a cosmetologist in Washington. As the result of a 2013 law, state-approved cosmetology schools in Washington are now considered as postsecondary schools so students can receive financial aid.
Job Demand for Cosmetologists in Washington
The job demand for cosmetologists varies depending on the individual’s area of specialty, although overall employment looks good. Cosmetologists are projected to see an employment growth of 13% from 2012-2022 while skincare specialists could see a growth of 40% during that same period. This info came from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
Cosmetology and Beauty Salary Ranges in Washington
Cosmetologists in Washington earned a mean annual wage of $35,400 as of May 2013, according to the BLS. These wages were substantially higher than the national average of $27,530. Skincare specialists in Washington earned $31,960 in 2013 and this wage is slightly lower than the national average for this profession. Things that may alter earnings include location of shop, clientele, work experience and reputation.
List of Top Beauty and Cosmetology Programs in Washington
Listed below are some of the top cosmetology programs for students interested in becoming part of the cosmetology field in Washington. Also included are the program lengths and the location of the schools.
- Cosmetology Program – 1,600 hours – Beauty Academy – Wenatchee, WA
- Esthetics Program – 750 hours – Beauty Academy – Wenatchee, WA
- Cosmetology Course – 1,800 hours – Cascade Beauty College – Auburn, WA
- Cosmetology Program – 1,730 hours/5 quarters – Everett Community College – Everett, WA
- Cosmetology Program – 1,600 hours – Lucas Marc Academy – Richland, WA
- Esthetics Program – 600 hours – Lucas Marc Academy – Richland, WA
- Manicurist Program – 600 hours – Lucas Marc Academy – Richland, WA
- Cosmetology Program – 1,650 hours/5 quarters – Seattle Vocational Institute – Seattle, WA
You may want also to check the following Cosmetology Schools: