How To Become a Beauty Advisor

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published March 22, 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Beauty advisors work directly with customers to market and sell products from across the industry. If you enjoy cosmetology, sales, marketing, creativity and beauty products, you may be interested in a career as a beauty advisor. In this article, we discuss what a beauty advisor is, the job duties and necessary skills, how to become one and the salary expectations and job growth in the field.

What is a beauty advisor?

A beauty advisor, also known as a beauty consultant, is a salesperson who specializes in the financial and material exchange of cosmetics and skin care products between companies and clients. Beauty advisors are like beauty influencers in that they recommend products and show their use to potential consumers. However, beauty advisors often work in-person or through direct virtual communication with customers rather than providing only non-conversational reviews. They are also interested in securing sales for their products rather than just offering opinions.

Related: 14 Top Careers in Cosmetology

What does a beauty advisor do?

As mediators between customers and specific brand or company, beauty advisors are not only responsible for making sales but also for providing excellent customer service and satisfaction. Some common job responsibilities of a beauty advisor include:

  • Answering customer questions about products, application techniques or usage

  • Greeting customers

  • Demonstrating product usage on themselves, models or clients

  • Describing the benefits, uses or special ingredients of a product

  • Maintaining store displays

  • Managing store inventory

  • Meeting sales goals

  • Offering personalized services like consulting, makeup application and skin care treatments to clients

  • Processing payments

  • Providing customer service

Related: How To Become a Makeup Artist

Skills for a beauty advisor

Beauty advisors can benefit from strong interpersonal, sales and artistic skills to excel in the field. Potential qualities of a beauty advisor may include:

Artistic ability

Beauty advisors may work with makeup, nail or haircare products that can benefit from artistic application. Understanding color theory, design or other artistic principles may be helpful when working in the cosmetology and beauty industries.

Communication

You may spend a majority of your time as a beauty consultant contacting business representatives, conversing with clients and sharing information. You may benefit from building oral and written communication skills or even practicing public speaking.

Customer service

As a representative for a brand, company or product, you may be the only point of contact a customer has with the organization. Typically, you may provide customer service through answering questions, receiving feedback, accepting returns or making exchanges and other interactions. Learning customer service skills and best practices may help make these parts of the job easier.

Math

Beauty consultants may tally product orders, calculate sales totals, make change for cash sales, conduct inventory and place orders for stock. Each of these tasks involves math. Consider strengthening your basic math and money skills to help you with these job responsibilities.

Persuasiveness

When working in sales, you can benefit from learning how to persuade customers to make or close a deal. Consider building these skills through debates, writing or other tasks that encourage you to think about how you could convince someone to make a particular choice.

Product knowledge

As a beauty consultant, customers may trust you as an expert on specific products or brands. Knowing about the composition of items, their application techniques, similar products within the same brand and other facts may help you to best answer questions and guide customers toward their desired purchase.

How to become a beauty advisor

Use these steps to learn how to become a beauty advisor:

1. Earn a high school diploma

To become a beauty advisor, you must earn a high school diploma or an educational equivalent like the GED. If possible, consider taking part in a joint high school and vocational school cosmetology program to build skills and knowledge about the beauty industry. You may also consider volunteering as a makeup artist for your school's drama department or cheer and dance squads to gain professional experience for a resume.

2. Consider earning a certification

Some beauty advisor positions may require potential candidates to have a certification from a qualified makeup or cosmetology school. Vocational schools and community colleges may offer similar programs as well. Requirements and program length may vary depending on the institution and individual certification. Typically, programs may take between six months and two years to complete and may include both classroom instruction and hands-on training.

3. Consider earning a cosmetology license

Consider earning a cosmetology license in your state to practice services on potential clients. Though requirements vary by location, some states may require you to have a current cosmetology license to do product demonstrations and applications on clients or models instead. To earn a cosmetology license, you must complete a vocational certification program, pass written and practicum tests, log experience hours and comply with other state requirements. Job listings may include licensing requirements, if applicable. If you are unsure about the licensing requirements for a specific position, contact the company.

Related: How Long Does It Take to Become a Cosmetologist?

4. Get sales experience

Consider building sales experience in retail or another related field to help you get a position as a beauty advisor. Working in retail may help you learn persuasive skills and understand other business responsibilities like inventory, using a cash register and handling customer service situations.

5. Learn about the product market

Read about, try out and study different products in the beauty industry to help increase your knowledge about the products themselves and the wider scope of the market. If you hope to work in a niche, like skincare, consider focusing on products in that discipline. If you hope to work for a specific company, consider researching their history and investigating their items. You may choose to look at books and magazines, watch tutorial videos or attend product launches and demonstrations to build your knowledge base.

6. Create a portfolio

Create a portfolio with images, video clips, tutorials and other media to illustrate your content knowledge and experience in the cosmetology and beauty field. You may show before and after results or talk about specific products you use and why. You can customize your portfolio to fit the requirements of a specific job posting or to show off your most marketable skills.

7. Consider freelancing

Consider starting your career as a beauty advisor as a freelancer for a direct sales beauty company. Typically, the company matches you with a recruiting consultant to help you get started and learn company policies and procedures. The organization may also require you to purchase a starter kit with product samples and training materials. Starting your career as a freelancer can be beneficial to help you build sales skills, learn about the industry and start with clients you already know.

8. Take part in company training

After you find a position as a beauty advisor, some companies may provide training about their products, tactics and policies. Some company trainings may be optional and others may be required or even paid. Consider taking part in any voluntary training sessions to learn tips from coworkers and other industry professionals to help you get started.

9. Engage in professional development

You may choose to engage in professional development seminars and workshops after getting a job as a beauty consultant. Your company may require attendance or make it optional. You may also need to record professional development hours to renew your cosmetology license. Consider attending company-sponsored events and outside programs that suit your interests to stay current on new products within the entire industry and to look for additional career opportunities.

Work environment for a beauty advisor

Beauty advisors may work for retailers with dedicated cosmetics sales counters. They may also choose to freelance without a designated workspace. For this reason, the work environment of a beauty advisor may differ depending on your position. Some positions may be primarily indoors and others may require travel to conventions, trade shows or client's homes. Both part-time and full-time beauty advisor positions may be available, and you may also set your own schedule sometimes. Depending on your company, you may work some evening and weekend hours.

Salary for a beauty advisor

On average, beauty advisors make $28,257 per year and may make up to an additional $4,000 in commission. Benefits packages for beauty advisors may include:

  • Dental insurance

  • Employee discount

  • Employee stock purchase plan

  • Family leave

  • Flexible schedule

  • Health insurance

  • Paid time off

  • Store discount

  • Vision insurance

  • Work from home

  • 401(k) and 401(k) matching

Job outlook for a beauty advisor

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) does not list specific job outlook information for beauty advisors. However, in related fields, the BLS expects to see a 0% change in retail sales positions within the next ten years. For skincare specialists, the BLS expects a 17% increase in jobs within the next ten years, which is much faster than average growth.

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