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By William Strunk | January 16, 2019

State Board Aesthetician Licensing Requirements

 

*inquirers should be aware that for the most accurate information on licensing, they should contact their state board department

 

Alabama

 

  • 1000 hours of training in an approved school or 2000 hours in an approved apprenticeship program
  • Must also submit an application and pay $195 licensing fee
  • Must pass written and practical exams
  • Renewal: every 2 years, $80 renewal fee, no continuing education hours required
  • Phone: 800-815-7453
  • Fax: 334-242-1926
  • Email: cosmetology@aboc.alabama.gov
  • Alabama Board of Cosmetology and Barbering website: http://www.aboc.state.al.us/default.aspx

 

Alaska

 

 

Arizona

 

  • 600 hours of training in an approved school
  • Must apply and be approved to take licensure exam with Arizona State Board of Cosmetology, $177 exam fee, $70 licensing fee
  • Renewal: every 2 years, $60 renewal fee, no continuing education hours required
  • Must pass written and practical exams
  • Phone: 480-784-4539
  • Arizona State Board of Cosmetology website: https://boc.az.gov/

 

Arkansas

 

  • 600 hours of training in approved school (apprenticeship not accepted)
  • Must pass written and practical exams, $65 licensing fee
  • Renewal: every 2 years, $50 fee, done online, no continuing education requirements
  • Lifetime license option available to aestheticians age 65+ with 30 years as a licensed aesthetician
  • Phone: 501-682-2168
  • Fax: 501-682-5640
  • Email: Cosmo@arkansas.gov
  • Arkansas Department of Health: Cosmetology website: https://www.healthy.arkansas.gov/programs-services/topics/cosmetology

 

California

 

  • 600 hours of training in board-approved school or 3200 hours in the department’s sponsored Apprenticeship Program
  • Must pass written and practical exams, $65 licensing fee
  • Renewal: every 2 years, no continuing education hours required
  • Phone: 800-952-5210
  • Fax: 916-575-7281
  • Board of Barbering and Cosmetology website: http://www.barbercosmo.ca.gov/

 

Colorado

 

  • 20 credit hours of training in an approved school (600 clock hours)
  • Must pass written and practical exams, $127exam fee
  • Renewal: every 2 years, $26 renewal fee, no continuing education hours required
  • Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies: Office of Barber and Cosmetology Licensure Website: https://www.colorado.gov/pacific/dora/Barber_Cosmetology
  • Phone: 303-894-7800
  • Fax: 303-894-0364
  • Email: dora_barber-cosmetology@state.co.us

 

Connecticut

 

 

Delaware

 

  • 600 hours of training in an approved school or 1200 hours of apprenticeship training
  • Must pass written and practical exams, $175 exam fee
  • Renewal: every 2 years, $175 renewal fee, no continuing education hours required
  • Phone: 302-744-4500
  • Fax: 302-739-2711
  • Email: customerservice.dpr@state.de.us
  • Delaware Board of Cosmetology and Barbering website: https://dpr.delaware.gov/boards/cosmetology/

 

Florida

 

  • The current option for licensure available in Florida is a facial specialist license. A facial specialist is defined by the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation as “a person registered to do facials in the State of Florida. Facial means the massaging or treating of the face or scalp with oils, creams, lotions, or other preparations. These services must be performed in a licensed salon.” A body wrapping license is also available. A body wrapper is defined as “a person who is licensed to engage in the practice of body wrapping which is a treatment program that uses presoaked herbal wraps for the purposes of cleansing and beautifying the skin of the body.”
  • Requirements for a Facial Specialist license:
    • 260 hours of training in an approved school’s facial specialty program
    • No exam, must submit Certification of Eligibility Form as well as a license application and pay fee
    • Must submit proof of taking an HIV/AIDS course w/in last two years of applying
    • Renewal: every 2 years, 16 hours of continuing education may be required
  • Requirements for a Body Wrapping license:
    • Must complete an approved, 2-day, 12-hour body wrapping course and submit certificate of completion along with application for license
    • No required exams, must pay application fees
  • Phone (for Board of Cosmetology): 850-487-1395
  • Fax (for Board of Cosmetology): 850-488-8040
  • Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation website: http://www.myfloridalicense.com/DBPR/cosmetology/

 

Georgia

 

  • 1,000 hours of training in an approved school or 2,000 approved apprenticeship hours
  • Must pass written and practical exams, $30 application fee
  • Renewal: every 2 years, 5 hours of continuing education required, $45 renewal fee
    • 3 of the five continuing education hours must be in a course in health and safety developed or approved by the Board
    • The other 2 must be in a course previously registered with the Board in any of the following areas: industry or trade show, health and safety, industry trends, computer skills, business management, the area of practice for the type of license held
  • Phone: 478-207-2440
  • Georgia Secretary of State Licensing website: http://sos.ga.gov/index.php/licensing

 

Hawaii

 

  • Aestheticians in Hawaii are licensed as “beauty operators”
  • 600 hours of training at an approved school or 1200 hours of an approved apprenticeship
  • Must pass a written and practical exam, $40 fee
  • Students can also apply for a temporary license that allows them to work under supervision of a licensed aesthetician while waiting to take the written exam for up to 1 year
  • Renewal: every 2 years
  • Phone: 808-586-3000
  • Email: barber_cosm@dcca.hawaii.gov
  • Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Professional and Vocational Licensing, Barbering and Cosmetology website: http://cca.hawaii.gov/pvl/boards/barber/

 

Idaho

 

  • 600 hours of training in an approved school
  • Must pass written and practical exams, $10 fee
  • Renewal: must renew every year, $10 fee, no continuing education requirements
  • Phone: 208-334-3233
  • Email: cos@ibol.idaho.gov
  • Idaho Board of Cosmetology website: https://ibol.idaho.gov/IBOL/BoardPage.aspx?Bureau=cos

 

Illinois

 

  • 750 hours of training, lasting at least 18 weeks, in an approved program/school
  • Apprenticeship not accepted
  • Must pass written and practical exams, $30 fee
  • Renewal: every 2 years, 10-14 hours of continuing education required, $25 fee
  • Phone: 888-473-4858
  • Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation, Esthetician website: https://www.idfpr.com/profs/Esthetics.asp

 

Indiana

 

  • 700 hours of training in an approved school/program completed w/in 3 years
  • Must pass written and practical exams, $40 application fee
  • Renewal: every 4 years, $40 fee
  • Phone: 317- 234-3031
  • Fax: 317-233-4236
  • Email: pla12@pla.IN.gov
  • Indiana Professional Licensing Agency website: https://www.in.gov/pla/2711.htm

 

Iowa

 

  • 600 hours of training in an approved school
  • Must pass written and practical exams, $75 fee per exam, $60 license fee
  • Renewal: every 2 years, $60 fee, 6 hours of continuing education required.
    • A minimum of 4 hours of the 6 hours shall be in the prescribed practice discipline and a minimum of 2 hours of the 6 hours shall be in the content areas of Iowa cosmetology law and rules and sanitation. Individuals holding more than one active license shall obtain 4 hours of continuing education in each prescribed practice discipline and an additional 2 hours in the content areas of Iowa cosmetology law and rules and sanitation.
  • Phone: 515- 281-0254
  • Fax: 515-281-3121
  • Iowa Board of Cosmetology Arts & Sciences website: https://idph.iowa.gov/Licensure/Iowa-Board-of-Cosmetology-Arts-and-Sciences

 

Kansas

 

  • Graduation from an approved school/program or 1000 clock hours of apprenticeship
  • Must pass written and practical exams, $60 fee
  • Renewal: every 2 years, $60 fee
  • Phone: 785-296-3155
  • Fax: 785-296-3002
  • Email: kboc@ks.gov
  • Kansas Board of Cosmetology website: http://www.kansas.gov/kboc/

 

Kentucky

 

  • 1000 hours of training in an approved school
  • Must pass a written and practical exam, $75 license fee
  • Renewal: must renew each year, $50 fee, no continuing education requirements
  • Phone: 502-564-4262
  • Fax: 502-564-0481
  • Kentucky Board of Hairdressers and Cosmetologists website: https://kbhc.ky.gov/Licensure/Pages/default.aspx

 

Louisiana

 

  • 750 hours of training in an approved school
  • Must pass written and practical exams and pay associated fees
  • Renewal: must renew each year and pay associated fees
  • Phone: 225-756-3404
  • Fax: 225- 756-3410
  • Email: ashley.cade@la.gov
  • Louisiana Board of Cosmetology website: www.lsbc.louisiana.gov

 

Maine

 

  • 600 hours of training in an approved school/program for at least 3 months or 1000 hours of apprenticeship hours for at least 6 months
  • Must pass written and practical exams, $41 license fee
  • Renewal: must renew each year, $20 fee, no continuing education hours required
  • Phone: 207-624-8603
  • Fax: 207-624-8637
  • Email: prof.lic@maine.gov
  • Maine Barbering and Cosmetology Licensing website: http://www.maine.gov/pfr/professionallicensing/professions/barbers/

 

Maryland

 

  • 600 hours of training in an approved school or 12 months as a registered apprentice
  • Must pass written and practical exams, $25 licensing fee
  • Renewal: every two years, $25 renewal fee, no continuing education hours required
  • Phone: 410-230-6192 or 410-230-6320
  • Fax: 410-333-6314
  • Email: barbers.cos@maryland.gov
  • Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing, and Regulation website: https://www.dllr.state.md.us/license/cos/cosreq.shtml

 

Massachusetts

 

  • At least 300 hours at an approved school or 2 years of practical experience under a licensed provider
  • Must pass written and practical exams, $135 exam fee, $68 licensing fee
  • Renewal: every 1-2 years, must pay associated fees, no continuing education hours necessary
  • Phone: 617-727-9940 or 800-274-2021
  • Email: cosmetologyandbarberingboard@state.ma.us
  • Massachusetts Board of Registration of Cosmetology and Barbering website: https://www.mass.gov/orgs/board-of-registration-of-cosmetology-and-barbering

 

Michigan

 

  • 400 hours of training in a licensed school of cosmetology or a 6-month apprenticeship program with a licensed cosmetology establishment
  • Must pass written and practical exams, pay associated fees
  • Renewal: every 2 years, $48 fee
  • Phone: 517-373-8068
  • Fax: 517-241-9416
  • Email: bplhelp@michigan.gov
  • Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs: Cosmetology website: http://www.michigan.gov/lara/0,4601,7-154-72600_72602_72731_72864---,00.html

 

Minnesota

 

  • 600 hours of training in an approved program/school, at least 15 weeks
  • Must pass written and practical exams, pay required fees
  • Renewal: every 3 years, 8 hours of continuing education required, pay required fees
  • Phone: 651-201-2742
  • Fax: 651-649-5702
  • Email: cosmetology@state.mn.us
  • Minnesota Board of Cosmetology website: https://mn.gov/boards/cosmetology/

 

Mississippi

 

  • 600 hours of training in a licensed school in which the practice of esthetics is taught
  • Must pass written and practical exams, pay exam fees and $50 licensing fee
  • Renewal: every 2 years, $50 renewal fee, no continuing education hours required
  • Master Esthetician License requirements:
    • Be a licensed esthetician in Mississippi for at least 12 months
    • 16 hours of approved continuing education, pay fees
    • Renewal: every 2 years, 8 hours of continuing education, pay fees
  • Phone: 601-359-1820
  • Fax: 601-354-6639
  • Mississippi State Board of Cosmetology website: http://www.msbc.ms.gov/Pages/Licensing.aspx

 

Missouri

 

  • 750 training hours in an approved school/program or 1500 hours of approved apprenticeship
  • Must pass written and practical exams, $280 exam fees, additional licensing fees
  • Renewal: every 2 years, $50 renewal fee. No continuing education hours required
  • Phone: 573-751-1052
  • Fax: 573-751-8167
  • E-mail: cosbar@pr.mo.gov
  • Missouri Board of Cosmetology and Barber Examiners website: http://www.pr.mo.gov/cosbar.asp

 

Montana

 

  • 650 hours of training in an approved program/school
  • Must pass written and practical exams, pay exam fees, $80 licensing fee
  • Renewal: every 2 years, $80 renewal fee, continuing education hours may be required
  • Phone: 406-444-5711
  • Fax: 406-841-2305
  • Email: UnitB@mt.gov
  • Montana Board of Barbers and Cosmetologists website: http://boards.bsd.dli.mt.gov/cos

 

Nebraska

 

  • 600 hours and 600 credits in either a school of cosmetology or an apprentice salon
  • Must pass written and practical exams, pay exam fees and $95 licensing fee
  • Renewal: every two years, $118 renewal fee, 8 hours of continuing education required
  • Phone: 402- 471-2399
  • Email: susan.chocholousek@nebraska.gov
  • Nebraska Department of Health and Human Resources website: http://dhhs.ne.gov/publichealth/Pages/crlCosmCosiEsthHome.aspx

 

Nevada

 

  • 900 hours of training in an approved program/school or 1800 hours in an approved apprenticeship program
  • Must pass written and practical exams, pay $125 exam fee and $70 licensing fee for 2-year license, or $140 licensing fee for 4 year license
  • Renewal: every 2-4 years, complete the Board’s Infection Control Course, pay renewal fee
  • Phone: 702-508-0015 (Las Vegas office) or 775-688-1442 (Reno office)
  • Fax: 702- 850-2418
  • Email: licensing@nvcosmo.com
  • Nevada Board of Cosmetology website: https://sites.google.com/nvcosmo.com/nevada-board-of-cosmetology/license-services/esthetician

 

New Hampshire

 

  • 600 hours of training in an approved school or 1200 hours in an approved apprenticeship
  • Must pass written and practical exams, pay exam and licensing fees
  • Renewal: every 2 years, pay renewal fees, no continuing education hours required
  • Phone: 603-271-3608
  • Fax: 603-271-3950
  • Email: joseph.shoemaker@oplc.nh.gov
  • New Hampshire Board of Barbering, Cosmetology, & Esthetics website: https://www.oplc.nh.gov/cosmetology/index.htm

 

New Jersey

 

  • 600 hours in an approved school/program
  • Must pass written and practical exams, $50 exam fee, $90 licensing fee
  • Can practice while attending school on a student permit, once half of required coursework is completed
  • Renewal: every 2 years, pay renewal fees, no continuing education hours required
  • Phone: 973- 504-6400
  • Email: askconsumeraffairs@dca.lps.state.nj.us
  • New Jersey State Board of Cosmetology and Hairstyling website: http://www.njconsumeraffairs.gov/cos/Pages/default.aspx

 

New Mexico

 

  • 600 hours of training (or equivalent credit) in an approved school/program or 6 months (150 hours of training) of work experience
  • Must pass written and practical exams, pay exam fees and $50 licensing fee
  • If combined with a manicurist license, 900 hours of training in an approved school
  • Renewal: every 2 years, no continuing education hours required, pay $50 renewal fee
  • Phone: 505-476-4622
  • Fax: 505-476-4665
  • Email: barber.cosmoboard@state.nm.us
  • New Mexico Board of Barbers and Cosmetologists website: http://www.rld.state.nm.us/boards/Barbers_and_Cosmetologists.aspx

 

New York

 

  • 600 hours of training in an approved school/program
  • Must pass written and practical exams, $15 fee for each exam and $40 licensing fee
  • Renewal: every 4 years, $40 renewal fee, no continuing education hours required
  • Phone: 518- 474-4429
  • Fax: 518- 473-6648
  • Division of Licensing Services: Esthetics website: https://www.dos.ny.gov/licensing/esthetics/esthetics.html

 

North Carolina

 

  • 600 hours of training in an approved program/school
  • Must pass written and practical exams, pay exam fee and $10 licensing fee
  • Renewal: must be renewed each year, 8 hours of continuing education required, $20 fee
  • Phone: 919-733-4117
  • Fax: 919-733-4127
  • Email: nccosmo@nccosmeticarts.com
  • North Carolina Board of Cosmetic Art Examiners website: https://www.nccosmeticarts.com/initiallicensing/ncstudents.aspx

 

North Dakota

 

  • 600 hours of training in an approved school/program
  • Must pass practical and written exams$25 exam fee, $25 license fee
  • Renewal: must be renewed each year, $25 renewal fee, no continuing education hours required
  • Master Esthetician License:
    • 1000 hours of practice as licensed aesthetician
    • License fee of $25
    • Must be renewed annually, $25 renewal fee
  • Phone: 701-224-9800
  • Fax: 701-222-8756
  • Email: info@ndcosmetology.com
  • North Dakota State Board of Cosmetology website: https://www.ndcosmetology.com/  

 

Ohio

 

  • 600 hours of training in an approved school/program
  • Must pass written and practical exams, pay exam fees, and pay licensing fee
  • Renewal: every 2 years, 8 hours of continuing education required, renewal fee
    • Licensees age 65+ prior to January 31, 2019 do not need CE hours to renew, just need to pay renewal fee
  • Advanced Esthetician License:
    • 1800 hours of practice as a licensed esthetician or 150 hours of training in an approved advanced esthetics program
    • Pay exam and/or licensing fees
    • Renew: every 2 years, pay renewal fees, 8 hours of continuing education
  • Phone: 614-466-3834
  • Fax:614-644-6880
  • Email: ohiocos@cos.ohio.gov
  • Ohio State Cosmetology and Barber Board website: http://www.cos.ohio.gov/FORMS-APPLICATIONS/COSMETOLOGY

 

Oklahoma

 

 

Oregon

 

  • 250 hours of training in an approved school/program
  • 150 hours in Safety/Infection Control and 100 hours of Career Development is also required for initial certification.
  • Must pass written and practical exams and pay exam and licensing fees
  • Renewal: every 2 years, pay renewal fee, no continuing education hours required
  • Phone: 503-378-8667
  • Email: hlo.info@state.or.us.
  • Oregon Board of Cosmetology website: http://www.oregon.gov/oha/PH/HLO/Pages/Board-Cosmetology-Esthetician-License.aspx

 

Pennsylvania

 

 

Rhode Island

 

  • 600 hours of training in an approved school/program
  • Must pass written and practical exams, pay exam fees and $25 licensing fee
  • Renewal: every 2 years, pay renewal fees, no continuing education hours required
  • Phone: 401-222-5960
  • State of Rhode Island Department of Health: Barbering, Hairdressing, and Cosmetology website: http://health.ri.gov/licenses/detail.php?id=225

 

South Carolina

 

  • 450 hours of training in an approved school/program
  • Must take written and practical exams, pay exam and licensing fees
  • Renewal: every 2 years, $52 renewal fee, 12 contact hours of continuing education hours required.
    • Only half of the 12-hour requirement may be completed online.
    • At least 3 hours of instruction shall be in sanitation or health and safety for clients
  • Phone: 803-896-4588
  • Email: boardinfo@llr.sc.gov
  • South Carolina Board of Cosmetology website: http://www.llr.state.sc.us/POL/Cosmetology/index.asp?file=faq.htm

 

South Dakota

 

  • 600 hours of aesthetics education
  • Pass written and practical exams, as well as a South Dakota state laws/rules exam
  • Pay $80 fee for exams and initial license
  • Renewal: must be renewed each year, pay $20 renewal fee, no continuing education hours required
  • Phone: 605-773-6193
  • Fax: 605-773-7175
  • Email: cosmetology@state.sd.us
  • South Dakota Cosmetology Commission website: http://dlr.sd.gov/cosmetology/licensing_requirements.aspx#esth

 

Tennessee

 

 

Texas

 

  • 750 hours of training in an approved school/program
  • Must pass written ($52) and practical ($74) exams and pay licensing fees
  • Renewal: every 2 years, pay $50 renewal fee, and obtain 4 hours of continuing education.
    • The 4 hours of continuing education must be through department-approved courses. The continuing education hours must include 1 hour of sanitation, and 3 hours of any topic listed in Section 83.120 of the Cosmetology Administrative Rules.
    • A licensee who is at least 65 years old and has held a license for at least 15 years is required to complete 1 hour of continuing education in sanitation. Courses must be approved.
  • Phone: 800-803-9202
  • Email: CS.Cosmetologists@tdlr.texas.gov
  • Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation: Cosmetologists website: https://www.tdlr.texas.gov/cosmet/cosmet.htm

 

Utah

 

  • 600 hours of training in an approved school (at least 15 weeks) or 800 hours in an approved apprenticeship (at least 5 months)
    • Master Esthetician: 1200 hours of training in an approved school or 1500 hours of an approved apprenticeship
  • Must pass written and practical exams, pay exam fees and $60 licensing fee
    • Master Esthetician: pass written and practical exams, pay exam fees and $85 licensing fee
  • Renewal: every 2 years, $52 renewal fee, no continuing education hours required
    • Master Esthetician: every 2 years, $68 renewal fee, no continuing education hours required
  • Phone: 866-275-3675 or 801-530-6628
  • Fax: 801-530-6511
  • Email: doplweb@utah.gov
  • Utah Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing website: http://dopl.utah.gov/licensing/cosmetology_barbering.html

 

Vermont

 

  • 600 hours of training in an approved school/program or 800 hours in an approved apprenticeship (12 months)
  • Must pass written and practical exams, pay exam and licensing fees
    • Master esthetician license: 1200 hours of training in an approved school, pay exam and licensing fees
  • Renewal: every 2 years, $130 renewal fee, no continuing education hours required
  • Phone: 802-828-1134
  • Email: ashley.cota@sec.state.vt.us
  • Vermont Secretary of State: Barbers and Cosmetologists website: https://www.sec.state.vt.us/professional-regulation/list-of-professions/barbers-cosmetologists.aspx

 

Virginia

 

  • 600 hours of training in an approved school/program
  • Must pass written and practical exams, pay exam fees and $105 licensing fee
  • Master esthetician: 1200 hours of training in an approved school
    • Pass required exams and pay required fees
  • Renewal: every 2 years, $105 renewal fee, no continuing education required
  • Phone: 804-367-8509
  • Fax: 866- 245-9693
  • Email: BCHOPLicensing@dpor.virginia.gov
  • Virginia Board for Barbers and Cosmetology website: http://www.dpor.virginia.gov/Boards/BarberCosmo/

 

Washington

 

  • 750 hours of training in an approved school/program or 800 hours in an approved apprenticeship
  • Must pass written and practical exams, pay fees $25 licensing fee
  • Master esthetician:1200 hours of training in an approved school or 1400 hours in an approved apprenticeship
    • Pass required exams and pay exam fees and $25 licensing fee
  • Renewal: every 2 years, $55 renewal fee (for master as well), no continuing education hours required
  • Phone: 360-664-6626
  • Fax: 360-664-2550
  • Email: plssunit@dol.wa.gov
  • Washington State Department of Licensing: Cosmetologists website: http://www.dol.wa.gov/business/cosmetology/index.html

 

West Virginia

 

 

Wisconsin

 

  • 450 hours (at least 11 weeks) of training in an approved school/program
  • Must pass written and practical exams, pay exam and licensing fees
  • Renewal: every 2 years, pay renewal fee, no continuing education hours required
  • Phone: 608-266-2112 or 877-617-1565
  • State of Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services: Aesthetician website: https://dsps.wi.gov/Pages/Professions/Aesthetician/Default.aspx

 

Wyoming

 

  • 600 hours of training in an approved school/program
  • Must pass written and practical exams, pay $100 exam fee and $48 licensing fee
  • Renewal: initial license must be renewed after one year, after that, every 2 years, $96 renewal fee, no continuing education hours required
  • Phone: 307-777-3534
  • Fax: 307-777-3681
  • Wyoming Board of Cosmetology website: http://cosmetology.wy.gov/


Read More
By Barry Eichner | January 16, 2019

Social media is one of the most confusing subjects that any spa owner or manager deals with on a regular basis. For many spa owners, the general topic of marketing is overwhelming and digital marketing can be even more confusing. Most spa owners simply do not know what they need to do to maximize their web presence.

graphic-1When the topic of digital media comes up, the conversation almost always turns to Facebook because it is the world's most trafficked website and more people log onto Facebook on a regular basis than Google. While many spa owners and managers do use Facebook in their personal lives, many of those users will easily admit that they are not great with social media.

Small businesses can benefit and grow if they have a strong digital media strategy that includes social media platforms, such as Facebook. However, many business owners do not leverage the power of digital media simply because they do not understand it. Oftentimes, the best decision a small business owner can make is to hire a digital media consultant to help them learn more about the digital space and how it can work for their business.

GETTING STARTED
The most important thing that a spa owner can do is to assess the spa's digital media presence by adopting a third-party perspective and assessing what the business looks like online. Be as honest as possible as it will lead to more success.

SET GOALS
What does the professional want from the digital media space? Do they want to get more clients? Would they like to provide education or a customer service opportunity? These are easy questions to formulate.

WHAT CAN THE PROFESSIONAL AFFORD?
It always comes down to resources. When it comes to a digital presence, there are a lot of possibilities for businesses. Different platforms require management and content, which take up valuable time and money.

MAKE A PLAN
If the professional fails to plan, they plan to fail. It is a line as old as time, but it is extremely true. The professional needs a digital media game plan. This plan will help and guide them through their everyday activities.

DO NOT TREAT THEM ALL EQUALLY
No matter which digital media products the professional intends to use, they should be sure that they have a unique strategy for each one. A common pitfall is to treat all products the same. Each platform has unique benefits and leveraging the platform to maximize those benefits is a winning plan.

HAVE A CONTENT CALENDAR
If the professional is going to manage their own digital media, they should create a calendar; it will be their guide for their digital media activity and help them remember to post content. It eliminates the common downfall of only posting content when it is on the professional's mind, which can lead to inconsistent posting of content on their platforms.

TAKE THE TIME TO COMMIT
Strategies that work always have some type of resources committed to them. As a business owner, it is vital for the professional to commit resources to their digital media activities. If the professional is doing the work in-house, they should assign roles and responsibilities. If they are going to hire a digital media consultant to help them, they should determine what dollar amount they can afford and then find someone who can help create a winning strategy, answer all of their questions, offer them ongoing support, and help them reach their goals with the budget they have available.

cellphoneTHE BEST CONTENT
When it comes to finding the best content, there are no rules. There is not a secret plan that exists that, if followed, will provide the professional with a win, mostly because "winning" is different to every business; it is defined by the business reaching its goals.

A general guideline to follow is to focus on content creation for the digital media presence in three main areas. Many experts in the social media field seem to agree that it is best to strive to educate, entertain, and inform. Following this strategy will help the spa owners avoid only using content that informs followers about the business: "Massages are 25% off in January," "We'll be open on Memorial Day," and "All retail products are buy 1, get 1 FREE." Do not just talk about the business. Create a dialogue. Have fun with the content.

Educate: The spa industry has a long list of treatments and products that clients want to know more about. Professionals can use the clients' interest to their advantage and create content that will help clients understand what the professional does. Teach them how products work, show them how treatments are performed, and give them more knowledge so they can engage with the professional and ask questions.

Entertain: Have some fun with digital media! For example, professionals can post the following: "Improve your selfies, see an aesthetician regularly." Being a small business allows professionals the ability to create the spa's personality. Allow digital media to be a venue for expression and have fun with fans and followers.

Inform: Talk about what is happening in the business.

Inform fans and followers about the spa's monthly specials. If the professional is having a product sale, be sure to add it to the content calendar. Perhaps the professional is having a gift certificate sale – this is always a winning idea for digital media content.quote-1

15 TYPES OF CONTENT TO TRY
1. Pictures: Having compelling and engaging pictures in digital media is required. Be sure to have professional photographs of the spa's staff members, the spa, its treatments, and its products. It is an upfront investment that will pay off in the long run.

2. Videos: Any type of video content that the skin care professional can curate is going to be a huge asset for the spa. Hire a professional to shoot an introductory video about the spa that can be used for digital media to help inform potential clients. The professional can also use the video feature on smart phones to create short videos for many of the popular social media platforms.

video3. Live Features: Numerous social media platforms are offering a feature that will allow the professional to communicate to their fans and followers in real time. These features are great for treatment demonstrations and product education.

4. Before and After Pictures: These photographs are a great way to show off the work of the spa's makeup artists and skin care professionals. Before and after images are powerful content that can help the professional earn the trust of potential clients.beforeafter

5. Industry Tips: The spa industry has many amazing publications that offer great industry tips. Sharing these tips with clients shows that
the professional stays abreast of current trends.

6. Staff Milestones: Many clients have good relationships with the spa's team members. Sharing staff promotions, achievements, and life events are a great way to increase good will with clients.

7. Vendor-Supplied Content: Vendors often have rich social media content on their platforms. Many day spas, waxing studios, and medical spas share Facebook posts, blog content, and Instagram pictures that vendors have posted to their platforms. It is an ideal strategy for a spa to have strong social media content without having to curate the content.

8. Blog Content: If the spa has team members who are good writers, have them write articles for the blog. This type of content that the spa is a thought leader in the industry. Professionals can also hire bloggers to write content for them.

9. Product Knowledge: Use the spa's digital media presence to teach clients about products. Because the professional spends such a short amount of time with clients before and after a service, product knowledge posts are a great way to extend the conversation.

ribbon10. Funny Memes: While the professional's digital media account should not be focused on making clients laugh, it is important to maintain an element of levity.

11. Business Awards: Do not be afraid to brag! Let clients know about any awards the spa or its team members have won; doing so establishes credibility. It also makes current clients proud to go to the spa and impresses potential clients.

12. New Treatments: If the professional adds new treatments to their spa menu, inform fans and followers. It will increase client interest and create dialogue.quote-2

13. Ancillary Business News: It is important for professionals to position their business among other businesses that have a similar clientele. If there is news and events happening with yoga studios, healthy restaurants, clothing stores, or gift shops, it is a good idea to share that information and ask those businesses to reciprocate in kind.

14. Professional Association News: There are numerous professional associations in the spa industry. They often produce content that would be ideal to share to help educate fans and followers.

15. Local Businesses and Events: Businesses are often part of a local business association or merchant group. These organizations hold events to bring customers into the local businesses. Sharing these events on the spa's digital platforms is a great way to help the community.

There is no one-size-fits-all rule for what type of content to post. Content must be relevant to the business and should help the professional meet their goals. Because it can be overwhelming without a plan, be sure to formulate a good plan and follow the content calendar. Consistently posting content will help the professional to effectively communicate and achieve their goals.

Barry-EicherBarry Eichner is a Philadelphia-based beauty industry expert. With over two decades of experience, he was a vice president with a chain of medical spas. In 2011, Eichner founded his own consulting firm. Since that time, he has worked with national skin care companies and spa industry distributors, as well as day spas, medical spas, and salons. He has been a contributing writer for local, regional, and national publications and trade journals. As a recognized leader in digital media strategy, Eichner has been speaking to and educating small business owners and beauty industry professionals in Philadelphia, sharing his passion and knowledge on how to leverage the digital space to achieve success.



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By Jeremy Lawrence | January 16, 2019

Do you struggle with finding ideas to post on social media? When you do post a status update, do you find it difficult to get viewers to engage? Do you scramble when trying to find visuals and instead post content in a hurry? Consistency seems to be a common thread within the spa industry on social media, but do not lose heart. It is key to building your spa’s brand.

Building trust and reliability with potential and current clients will lead not only to a loyal following, but will bring new clients in the door. What is important is learning how to tap into your brand’s authentic voice on social media and using that same voice in your visuals and all other content you post. Your voice, greeting, and overall communication style at the spa should carry over onto your social media platforms.

If time is a concern, designate different periods throughout the day that employees can post to social media – but first, make sure everyone is on the same page and will create a consistent theme across the board. On the other hand, you might consider designating one employee to manage all of your social media platforms. Either way, the goal is to create consistency and appealing content that is going to resonate with your followers.

rocketVisual Content - Why Your Marketing Needs Visuals

Visual marketing is a major trend online that is only growing more and more with popularity. Marketers who use visual content get an increase in engagement, more leads, and additional followers, which naturally result in higher earnings.

What is Visual Content?
When you think of visual content, you probably imagine images. While images are important, visual content includes many other formats such as:

  • Videos (filming a spa service, product demonstration, or special event)
  • Infographics (a visual representation of data or information that presents complex ideas in a simple way)
  • Memes (usually a humorous image accompanied by text that conveys an idea or message and spreads virally throughout the Internet)
  • Word art using applicable words for your industry
  • Cartoons (representing spa images)
  • Inspirational quotes accompanied by images
  • Charts and graphs
  • Brand logos
  • Design elements (such as scrolls, arrows, flourishes, labels and ribbons to add a touch of flair)

Why Images are Essential
As the saying goes, a picture says a thousand words. People naturally respond to images. The human brain processes visual information much faster than text, which must be read and processed. Images communicate ideas in a more immediate way.
Images are especially effective in marketing because of their ability to tell a story. Stories resonate with people and can help create a strong bond between companies and their followers. These stories are especially effective when they can invoke a positive emotion.
Images are absolutely essential for branding. Your profile image on social media or brand logo is instantly recognizable to your audience. The colors and design features you use for your website and marketing materials instantly communicate your message. Just consider the Apple, Google, or Starbucks logos.
Finally, visual content is great for social media. Social media posts with visual content get 120 to 180 percent more engagement than text-only posts. Facebook has even changed its profile format to a timeline to make it more visually-oriented. There are also hundreds of popular social media websites such as Pinterest or Instagram made exclusively for sharing images.

green-quoteVisual Content Ideas
One obstacle that keeps more marketers from going visual is a lack of ideas. Companies should create anything that engages, entertains, or informs their audience.
One idea is to take information you would normally present in a text article and turn it into an infographic. Take something complex that you would like to teach your audience and turn it into a graphic that they can glance at and easily understand. A great way to do this is by using platforms such as visual.ly or inforgr.am.
Visuals can be added to regular content, too. Adding images to press releases to make them more appealing has become a recent trend in marketing. You can add videos to your blog posts to give your readers another way to consume and quickly understand the concepts you are trying to convey.
You can also ask your audience to generate your content for you. Visual content can be crowdsourced. Ask your audience to take pictures related to your products or that feature your products, and have them send the pictures to you so you can post them on your website or social media page. The idea behind social media is to lead your viewers to your website, not the other way around.

Creating Visuals is Easy
Many marketers are kept from using visuals because they feel their design skills are not up to par. You may think that you are not a great photographer and that this keeps you from incorporating photographs in your marketing campaigns. However, visual content creation tools make it easy for anyone to create wonderful, professional-grade images with little or no skill whatsoever. And sometimes, when the images are not as professional, they actually resonate more with your audience since it makes them think of you as more of a real person.

The Psychology of Color Schemes

Colors compose a secret language that only the human subconscious – and savvy marketers – can understand. There is a reason that the walls of your local fast food restaurant are orange, red, and yellow. These are colors that subconsciously excite you and stimulate your appetite. There is a science behind the calming shade of green of your favorite coffee shop’s cups and why there is so much red in casinos. The language of color is a huge advantage in the world of marketing.

How Color Works on the Mind
To say that seeing the color orange makes you hungry is an oversimplification. The orange countertops are not going to bring in customers who are full and make them eat. But marketing surveys have shown that color is an element that directly affects consumer behavior. Color plays on associations in the mind that can elicit certain responses, which is why it is one of the most powerful design elements on websites, advertisements, direct mail pieces, and other marketing materials.

Color Associations
Colors elicit responses, but these responses can vary slightly from person to person. However, according to recent marketing research, there are some common associations made with certain colors.
As mentioned before, red and orange are associated with excitement. Red reminds us of energy and movement. It is often used in calls-to-action and “buy now” buttons. Orange is associated with enthusiasm and cheerfulness. It is also often used to urge customers to
take action.
Blue and green have the opposite effect because they are calming colors. Blue reminds us of stability and security and is often used for business or technology websites where trust is important. Green has similar associations to blue and is also associated with money.
Pink, of course, reminds us of femininity. Yellow is an attention-grabbing color that the mind associates with youth and positivity. Although black can be seen as ominous, it is also associated with power, sleekness, and luxury. White, on the other hand, is associated with purity
and cleanliness.

powerUsing Colors Effectively
The best way to use color is as an overall theme. For example, if what you are selling is associated with fall, use fall colors such as earthy reds, browns, and oranges. If you are offering something beach-related, your website and marketing materials should contain the colors of the sand, ocean, and sunshine.
Your best color scheme depends on your market. If your spa is marketing to a more mature audience to whom stability and trust are important, use calm, muted colors. Retro colors work well when your market is young and hip. Always think carefully about what associations your color scheme could be triggering.

Thinking Outside the Box
It is good to stick to common knowledge about colors to err on the side of caution, but sometimes wildly unexpected colors work well. Your spa might use the traditional soft, muted colors. However, a more contemporary spa might use bolder and edgier colors.

Testing Your Market
While there are trends, there are no hard-and-fast rules when it comes to the colors of marketing. Cultures, markets, and individuals all react differently to different colors. Start by looking at color schemes in your niche and then choose accordingly. Test different colors to see which ones your market best responds to.

Building a Brand Atmosphere
When building a brand for your business, you must think about a visual scheme. There are many elements to consider when building a brand, such as colors, logos, shapes, and so on. Visual branding is an important part of having and expanding
a business.

How to Create a Visual Scheme for Your Brand
Building a brand is all about consistency. Your clients expect to have the same experience whenever they deal with your brand. This consistency will lead to client reliability and trust. An important part of creating a consistent brand image is to choose a visual scheme that will always be associated with your name or company’s name.

Design Schemes and Associations
How important is your brand’s visual scheme? Consider for a moment the mistakes big companies have made while trying to change the visual features of their products. Clear Coca Cola crashed and burned, because we expect it to be black. When Heinz produced green ketchup, it made appearances as a collectible on eBay, but not on kitchen tables.
Certain colors and design schemes are associated with certain products. If the product has the wrong color or design, it is off-putting to customers. Also, changing your image once you have already made an impact on your audience can be detrimental.

orange-quoteYour Visual Brand Language
To create a design and color scheme for your brand, you need to create a visual brand language. A visual brand language includes design elements such as shape, color, materials, finish, typography, and composition. All of these items together should communicate a company’s values and personality.
For a good example, take BMW’s front grill. When you see it on an advertisement or website, you automatically think of BMW and all the qualities associated with this luxury carmaker. This distinct design feature is used as a visual marketing tool by the company to trigger feelings and associations in the minds of its target market.
An important key to creating a visual brand language is to remember that it is not static, but can be changed and used in different ways. Consider Google’s logo, the basic letters on a clean white background. During different times of the year or during promotions, small changes are made to this basic design theme. Your visual brand language can be something flexible as well.

Visuals for Your Niche
Your images should create a brand atmosphere that corresponds with your spa’s niche market. Consider your target market and their interests. Think about your products and services and look at how other companies in your niche create their brand atmospheres. For example, some niches tend to favor stark visuals, while others use soft, retro filters. Each image a company uses fits with its atmosphere to create a sense of consistency across all of its marketing and
content creation.

Your Brand’s Logo
The single most important visual element is your logo. To create a logo, go back to your brand’s unique selling proposition. Decide what your brand’s promise and personality is. These should be communicated through your brand’s logo. Your logo must be based on this foundation and harmonize with your other design elements.
The best practice when designing a logo is to start by choosing a primary and secondary color. The primary color is for your symbol, icon, or lettering. The secondary color is for the background. Take advantage of color meanings and associations when choosing colors.

The Importance of Visual Branding
A common business mistake is bringing in outside visual experts as an afterthought, rather than a central part of the initial planning. Your brand’s visual plan is
just as important as your unique selling proposition or your products: It is part of your company’s basic image being presented to your target market.

Sharing Visual Content on Social Media

Visual content is the best kind of content for social media marketing. Images and videos get more likes, shares, comments, and other engagement than text-only updates. Creating and sharing visual content is essential for any social media marketing campaign.

Snippets and Previews
In addition to sharing your own visual creations, you can share snippets or movie clips as a preview of the content you want to share. On social media websites such as Facebook, the website automatically picks out an image from your content to create a preview. Along with a catchy headline, this thumbnail image gives your followers an idea of what to expect if they click your link.

Crowdsourcing Images
Another shortcut to create visual content is to crowdsource. Give your social media followers a challenge. For example, asking them to take pictures of creative uses of your products and post them on your social media websites gives followers a way to participate directly in your brand and gives you easy, fun content. If you set up a contest with prizes, you are even more likely to get a slew of interesting visuals to share.

Getting the Most out of Visuals on Social Media
Sharing visual content will get you more activity on your social media profiles, but here are some other ways to leverage your visuals and make the most of them:

  • Actively use Pinterest, Instagram, and other visual social media platforms and take advantage of their sharing capabilities on Facebook, Twitter, and the other social media websites you use.
  • Take time to create or choose a picture for your profile that conveys your brand message and vision (this is particularly important for your Facebook timeline cover photo).
  • Invest in tools that are easy for you to use, include all the features you need, and get into a regular routine of visual content creation and sharing.
  • Find good sources for visual content curation to augment your content creation schedule.
  • Get into a regular routine of creating short, one to two minute videos for social media sharing.

Size and Style
Be careful with sizing and always look at your images as you post them to make sure they look the way they should. Make sure that you understand the sizing requirements of the social media websites you use, especially Facebook, which often makes changes to these requirements.

Focus on Fun

Just like regular content, focus on providing value and sharing content that is relevant. With visual content, another important element is fun. This is a major reason why people share the content they like – it inspires them, makes them laugh, or entertains them in some way. Try to strike a good balance between informing and entertaining.


Valerie-Hurst.2015jpgValarie Hurst is an aesthetician and has more than 20 years of experience in the beauty, spa and wellness industry, and business management combined. She is the founder of Valarie Hurst & Company in which she specializes in Internet marketing, social media marketing, and business coaching to the beauty, spa and wellness industry. She has trained under some of the most influential business women on social media and Internet marketing that have been noted by Forbes Magazine. She is now using her expertise and business skills to teach her fellow colleagues how to grow and expand their business with today’s technology, using these tools and know-how to create a culture of loyal customers. www.valariehurstandcompany.com



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