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Anyone who has ever styled the hair of a Barbie doll or cut their little sister's bangs (without being asked) has probably at one time or another considered a career in cosmetology.

Cosmetologists, who are also known as hairdressers, beauticians, beauty operators and hairstylists, enjoy a career that is fun and exciting. According to a December, 2008 article that appeared on USNEWS.com, a job satisfaction survey done in Britain in 2008 ranked hairstylist No. 1. According to the article, the results weren't surprising, since "It's one of the few careers in which you please nearly every client. (Save for the occasional one who cries, 'What have you done to my hair!')" It's also one of the few careers in which a person actually gets paid for staying up to date on fashion and trends. A fashionista's dream job!

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Cosmetologists enjoy a very "social job" and many clients eventually turn into friends. Other than the medical profession, there are not a lot of other careers besides cosmetology that involve touching people and being allowed into their personal space. Perhaps because of this close proximity between cosmetologists and their clients, strong bonds are often formed, and cosmetologists are often privy to private details of their client's lives. This may explain why many of them consider counseling to be another aspect of their job description!

Unlike a job in an office setting, where dress-codes are usually conservative and chatting needs to be kept to a minimum, cosmetologists are free to express themselves in many ways, from their personal style to the work they perform for their clients.

They are encouraged to chat up their customers, since any experienced cosmetologist will tell you that most clients are loyal because they like them personally, regardless of what their cosmetology skills are. Consequently, a cosmetologist's success is extremely dependent upon the level of their communication skills.

A career in cosmetology offers a great deal of job security, with little danger of becoming obsolete or in decline. Cosmetology is a $20 billion industry with ample room for growth.

Unlike some jobs that no longer exist because of outsourcing, off shoring, or technology, there is really no other way for a person to get a professional haircut without employing the services of a cosmetologist, unless they're comfortable having their mother cut their hair with the kitchen shears or the dog clippers! The word "cosmetology," which is derived from the Greek word "kosmētikos," means "skilled in adornment." But what exactly do cosmetologists do?

 

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