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How Much Does a Hairstylist Earn, and How Can I go About Finding Work After Graduating From Cosmetology School?

A Job search guide for the newly graduated hairdresser, cosmetologist, barber, and esthetician.

You’ve finally decided to embark on a career into the beauty industry. What motivated you to make the first step was your creative ingenuity and passion for making people feel great about how they look. But it’s not your intention to operate a charity. You’re also doing this to make a comfortable living. So, how much money does a cosmetologist make a year in Canada? 

Hairstylist Earning Potential

As a hairstylist, your earning potential will depend on a variety of factors, including your level of experience, the location of your salon, and the demand for your services. According to the Government of Canada’s Job Bank, the median hourly wage for a hairstylist is $17/hour, over $35,000/year. However, top stylists can earn significantly more, with some making upwards of $100,000 per year.  

In addition to your base salary, many hair stylists also earn a commission on the services they provide, as well as tips from their clients. The amount you can earn in tips can vary widely, but it’s not uncommon for stylists to receive 20% or more of the cost of their services in tips. Not only do tips increase your income, but it incentivizes you to master your craft and offer the best customer service.  

Finding Work as a Hairstylist after Graduation

So, how can you go about finding work as a hairstylist after graduating from cosmetology school? Here are a few tips to help you get started: 

  1. Network with other professionals in the beauty industry. Building relationships with other stylists and salon owners can help you learn about job openings and get your foot in the door. Checking out your local chamber of commerce may be a great start. 
  2. Build a strong online presence. In today’s digital age, it’s important to have an online presence as a stylist. Create a professional website or social media account to showcase your portfolio and make it easier for potential employers to find you.
  3. Consider working as an assistant or apprentice. Many stylists start out as assistants or apprentices, working under the supervision of a more experienced stylist. This can be a great way to gain hands-on experience and build your skills while also earning a paycheck.
  4. Look for job openings in salons or spas. Many stylists find work in salons and spas, so it’s worth checking out job openings in these types of businesses.
  5. Don’t be afraid to take on temporary or freelance work. If you’re having trouble finding a permanent position, consider taking on temporary or freelance work to gain experience and build your portfolio.

As you search for work as a hair stylist, it’s important to be proactive and persistent. Don’t be afraid to apply for jobs that may be out of your comfort zone or to ask for informational interviews with salon owners or other stylists. The more you put yourself out there, the more likely you are to find the perfect job for you. 

Job Search Tips for Hairstylists

Finally, here are a few additional tips to help you succeed in your job search: 

  1. Tailor your resume and cover letter to the specific salon or job you’re applying for. This will show the employer that you’ve done your research and are genuinely interested in working for their business.
  2. Be prepared to negotiate your salary. Don’t be afraid to ask for what you’re worth but be realistic and open to compromise.
  3. Show enthusiasm and passion for the industry. Employers are looking for stylists who are passionate about their work and are eager to learn and grow in their careers.
  4. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. If you’re having trouble finding work or aren’t sure where to start, consider reaching out to your cosmetology school or a professional association for help and guidance. A cosmetology school like Bruno’s is devoted to their graduates as much as they are to their students. 

By following these tips and staying proactive in your job search, you’ll be well on your way to finding a rewarding and successful career as a hairstylist. Also, don’t ever worry about job security. Unless baldness becomes a national fashion trend, there will always be customers who need haircuts! Why not start your application today?