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November 1, 2023

How to Become an Esthetician in California?

esthetician student

California is a state where beauty is highly sought after. Natural beauty accomplished with attentive skincare and expert aesthetic treatments has even greater value because it is the kind of beauty that lasts. It’s no surprise that estheticians are in high demand throughout the state of California, and that demand only continues to grow.

Talented and skillful estheticians are called upon to provide their skincare expertise and delicate touch in facial treatments to counteract the effects of age and bring each person’s natural glow to the surface. Tailoring a person’s look with artful makeup chosen in just the right formulas for each skin type and activity plans, and sculpting hair into the perfect lines and shapes can help clients delight in their appearance and health at the same time.

Of course, to become an esthetician, you must hone these advanced skills. Becoming an esthetician in California requires a specific process of training, testing, and licensure before you can open up shop and begin to unlock inner beauty with your delicate touch. We will explore the steps necessary to start your career as a California-licensed esthetician.

Research and Preparation

Begin your journey by researching the esthetician licensure path and licensing requirements in California. You will need to attend an esthetician school for a total of 600 learning hours, followed by a licensing test to start your career.

Explore local esthetician schools and beauty schools with esthetics programs. Choose a school based on the quality of their program and the opportunities that may be available to you upon graduation. From there, you can create a timeline and set a budget for the education phase of your training.

Education and Training

Now that you’ve done your research, you can get ready for the esthetics program! Attend each class, take careful notes, and get involved in the hands-on practical training. Both the book learning and practical skills are essential to your qualifications as an esthetician.

Our lesson plans are thoughtfully designed to enhance your educational experience, and tailored to accommodate diverse learning preferences. You’ll have the opportunity to learn through engaging discussions, lively demonstrations, and enthusiastic student involvement. But that’s just the beginning – we enhance your learning journey with multimedia resources, guest experts, on-site industry excursions, stimulating projects, and immersive experiences, all geared toward preparing you for a rewarding future in the esthetics industry.

In this program, you can expect to learn:

  • Facials
  • Chemical Facials
  • Electric Facials
  • Makeup Application
  • Chemistry
  • Anatomy
  • Chemistry
  • Electricity
  • Eyebrow Beautification
  • Law & Regulation
  • And more!

State Licensing Requirements

When your esthetician school program is complete, you will be able to register for the California Esthetician Licensing exam. Before this, you will need to make sure that you meet the licensing requirements.

  • You must be 17 years or older
  • You must have completed 10th-grade education or the equivalent
  • You must have completed 600 hours of esthetician education and training
  • You will need to prepare for both the written and practical exam
  • You will need a personal ID and your Proof of Training document

Exam Preparation

How can you prepare for your California esthetician license exam? It’s time to study.

First, review your skincare techniques and principles. Go through all your notes and learning materials and work with a friend to help quiz yourself on everything you need to know for both the written and practical tests.

You can also take practice exams and schedule mock practical tests, often through your school and with the help of classmates. If you would like additional guidance in exam preparation, seek help from your instructors and mentors in your esthetician school.

Taking the Licensing Exams

Once you are ready, you can schedule your exam. Exams are available on specific days at approved testing locations. Be prepared to sit through the written exam and then perform the practical exam on a testing volunteer.

When you schedule your exam, you will be given a list of materials to bring. Make sure your supplies meet the exact specifications and is in good condition.

Manage your stress or pre-test anxiety by studying and quizzing with classmates. You can become more confident when you are sure that you truly know everything you need. You can also practice safer techniques at home to ensure you will have steady hands when giving facials or applying makeup.

When the exam is through, you can relax and wait for the results.  It will take a little bit of time to process (a few days to a few weeks). You will then likely be notified by email of your passing score. You will then be eligible to apply for a license.

Application Process

After passing the exam, you will then apply for a California Esthetician’s License. Fill out the application online and provide all the required documentation. This includes photo ID, Proof of Training, and your Exam Results. You will also need to pay the $115 license fee.

If your documents are correct and you have completed the previous steps, you will be issued an Esthetician License and will be able to begin your professional practice.

Building Your Career

There are several things you can do to jump-start your career as an esthetician, even before your first job and as your career begins.

  • Create a Portfolio
    • Build a collection of photos of your handiwork. At first, this can be glamour shots of your friends and classmates who display your best work.
  • Showcase Your Skills in Skincare Treatments
    • List your skincare skills and include examples in your portfolio.
  • Network with Potential Clients and Employers
    • The best job opportunities for estheticians often come through networking. So start building your network.

Job Search and Career Development

There is an excellent selection of esthetician jobs throughout the state of California. You can seek jobs in spas, salons, resorts, retreats, and even medical clinics. You can also opt to open your skincare studio as an entrepreneur.

As you focus on your career, be sure to constantly expand your skills and the services you offer. Get to know your clientele and specialize in the treatments and experiences that they want the most.

Continuing Education and Specialization

Estheticians never need to stop training. You can continue learning advanced treatments and the latest techniques throughout the entire course of your career. Each new skill will make you more valuable as you can offer a wider range of services and more personalized, expert care for each client.

Stay updated with the latest skincare trends and technologies by keeping connected with your beauty school and its advanced programs. Explore specializations such as medical esthetics or holistic skincare to boost your career potential.

Maintaining Your License

Lastly, remember to keep your license renewed at the proper intervals to avoid any hiccups in your practice. California estheticians must renew their licenses every 5 years. You may occasionally be required to meet new educational requirements to comply with state regulations. Be prepared for these updates to your license as you make long-term career plans.

Start Your Career as a California Esthetician at the American Beauty College

Aspiring estheticians have a bright future ahead in the beauty-focused landscape of California. As an expert in natural beauty, you can give your clients the greatest gift of all; delight in their inner glow, natural facial contours, and excellent skin health.

To begin this journey, you will need first to choose a beauty school and esthetician program to help you prepare for your exam and earn your license. Explore the American Beauty College and our esthetics program as the starting place for your career. Contact us today to learn more about the esthetics program and the success of our beauty school alumni.

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