A cut above: Cosmetology students excel in rigorous course

Nicole Hernandez

Cosmetology may seem like an easy class to take in high school because many students believe we just do hair and makeup all day in class. While part of that is true, it is a lot more complex than that and takes a lot of time and dedication. 

Cosmetology students have to learn how to do hair, nails, and many other things. They have to learn all about the hair and the face, including knowing how all the face muscles’ functions’ and names.

During the first week of school, students learn about the safety precautions that need to be taken in salons. They have to learn what to do if a client is bleeding or what to do if the stylist accidentally cuts themself while cutting hair. Students also have to learn how to make a registered EPA, which is used to disinfect the work station before and after a client.

Cosmetology students learn about all the different angles to turn the head when cutting and at which angle to hold the hair. The way a stylist holds the hair creates a certain haircut. If the hair is held at a zero degree angle, it would be a blunt cut, but if it is held at 180 degrees, it creates shorter layers in the hair. If the hair is not held at the right angle, the haircut will be wrong. The angle of the hair is the one of the most important factors for haircutting. 

There is also a certain way to hold the shears when cutting hair, and only a certain amount of hair can be cut at a time. 

There are also safety precautions in place when using sharp utensils like not cutting past the second knuckle because if a stylist does, they can cut themself. I learned that the hard way and cut myself while cutting a mannequin’s hair.

When students learn how to do a chemical service on hair they use a mock solution instead of going right in and trying it on the mannequins. Classes go into detail about how much hair to take and how much dye should be applied onto the hair. It also depends on if the client is getting a touch up or not.

Students also learn how to do perms and which perms to use on a client based on their hair type. They also learn how to correctly apply the solution and the rollers to create the perfect style.

 Before we began doing perms, we were told that it was not going to smell good, but I was not expecting it to smell as bad as it did.

On certain days cosmetology students are allowed to invite people to come in and perform services on them. They can invite friends to come in and have their hair done to allow cosmetology students to practice.

Sometimes I get nervous when I perform services for people because it is an actual person and not a mannequin. However, it gives me the chance to practice how I would perform that service for another person and the changes I could make.

Cosmetology has taught me so much over the past 3 years. I am glad I took this class because it has prepared me for the future. It has been my favorite class and I look forward to learning something new everyday as I prepare for my future career.