If you are a people-oriented person who enjoys helping others look and feel their best a career in the beauty industry might be ideal for you. It is one of the few careers that allow you to work full- or part-time as a salaried employee, on a commission basis, or as an independent contractor. Utah offers many enjoyable and profitable job opportunities in a wide variety of beauty specialties from cosmetology, barbering and esthetics to manicuring and makeup artistry.
Salary data can be deceptive because they normally do not include tips, which are usually between 10 and 25 percent of the cost of the service. If you are working in a high-end salon or spa, tips could be even higher depending on how cordial you are to the client.
If being your own boss is your thing, you might consider renting a booth or chair at a salon for a monthly fee. It’s the next best thing to owning your own shop. Regardless of the path you choose, the first step is getting the education you need to become licensed for whichever specialty you select.
Cosmetology is the right choice if you wish to learn all aspects of the beauty industry including hairdressing/styling, skin care, nail care and makeup application. A Utah cosmetology license requires the completion of 2,000 hours of instruction and training at an accredited beauty school after which you must pass the exam given by the Utah Cosmetology and Barber Board.
According to the 2013 Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) the 2,630 cosmetologists employed in Utah earn the following salaries (tips not included).
The following shows the employment rate and annual salaries in different Utah cities:
You will have to spend 600 hours in beauty school and pass the board exam to earn your Utah esthetician license. As one of the roughly 370 skin care specialists in Utah you will provide clients with a variety of facials, masks, peels, waxing, brow/lash tints and body wraps. These services are especially appreciated after a day of skiing or snowboarding at one of Utah’s many ski resorts.
The BLS (2013) reports the following esthetician salaries in Utah:
The annual salaries of esthetician in large Utah metropolitan areas are:
Salt Lake City,$18900,$33370,$46530
Nail Technician Salary
If you have always loved painting the nails of your friends becoming a nail technician might be the right career for you. A Utah license requires 300 hours of beauty school training and passing the board nail technician exam. The following table shows BLS estimates for nail technician salaries in Utah.
Makeup Artist Salary
You can elect to become either a theatrical makeup artist or a personal makeup artis. Realistically, Utah offers very few lucrative opportunities for theatrical makeup artists as opposed to personal makeup artists that work at salons, spas, resorts, bridal boutiques, modeling agencies, cosmetics stores and even mortuaries. Although there is no makeup artist license in Utah, you have a far better chance of being employed if you earn either a cosmetology or esthetician license.
Salaries differ with location. The following annual salaries are based on averages determined from job listings for makeup artists.
- Statewide – $33,000
- Provo – $37,000
- Salt Lake City – $33,000
- Park City – $33,000
- Ogden – $31,000
- George – $27,000
It is noted that Provo is the home of Brigham Young University which has an enrollment of over 30,000 students. Salt Lake City is the state’s capital and largest metropolitan area while the mountain resort town of Park City is a tourist Mecca
You’ll need to spend 1,000 hours in a barber college and pass the State Barber Board exam to be granted a barber license in Utah. The following annual salaries are based on job listings in different Utah cities.
- Statewide – $28,000
- Ogden – $34,000
- Salt Lake City – $32,000
- Sandy – $31,000
- Park City – $31,000
- George – $31,000
- Provo – $25,000