how to become a beauty therapist

Do you believe everyone deserves to feel beautiful? Do you enjoy pampering people, and grooming them to make them feel special? Then, why not consider becoming a beauty therapist? Beauty therapists consult with their clients and suggest treatments and ways to improve their appearance. Clients could visit the Salon where you work for a special occasion or as a part of their grooming routine. You are an expert at applying a wide range of different beauty treatments, such as makeup, skin treatments, nail work, and hair grooming. While the focus of your work is practical tasks, the bigger picture aspect of your work is therapeutic. When people come to the salon, you play a part in helping them to feel good, more confident, and this has an impact on their happiness.

If you can’t wait to get your friends sat down so you can do their makeover. Or you love to work with people and would like to help them feel good, why not become a beauty therapist. Keep reading to find out all the juicy details, and the steps you need to take to achieve your goal.

Step one: Enrol on a course for beauty therapists

To practice as a beauty therapist in Australia you must complete a tertiary level course in beauty therapy and get a diploma in beauty therapy. Attaining these qualifications are essential to finding work. So what are you waiting for? Get enrolled and take the first step towards your perfect job.

Step two: Look for your first job

After qualifying as a beauty therapist you can begin to look for work. In recent years the industry has begun to grow, with opportunities opening up. Analysts project strong growth over the next five years. When applying for work remember to tailor your resume and cover letter for each application. Also, highlight your qualifications, personal strengths and any relevant experience you may have.

Step three: Gain experience

Once you have landed your first job (well done you), focus on building up your experience and perfecting your skills. This will be vital for you if you would like to progress your career. Beauty therapy involves a lot of practical skills, so experience is important so all those things become second nature.

Step four: Consider a specialisation

Beauty therapists have a broad set of practical and interpersonal skills. These skills can easily transfer to many different occupations.

Massage Therapist

If you like the therapeutic side of your work as a beauty therapist then specialising in massage is a good choice to make. Massage therapists give treatments to their clients which are enjoyable and help them to relax. Massage can also help to relieve sore muscles or other discomforts in the body from exercise or other activities.


If you discover your passion is for hair, you could channel your skills to become a hairdresser. Then, rather than carrying out such a broad spectrum of treatments you can really focus on doing one skill very, very well. Hair is a big part of a person’s appearance and when they are happy with their hairdo their self-confidence can take a big boost.

Makeup Artist

Makeup artists work in salons, at special events, on fashion shows, and in media production. Specialising in makeup can open doors to some wonderful opportunities which will take you out of the salon and into the big wide world. There is a lot of room for creativity in makeup artistry, so this specialisation will suit creative people.

What does a Beauty Therapist Do?

A beauty therapists day is never the same. You meet different people and carry out a wide range of different tasks in their quest for beauty. Moreover, you treat the whole body, the face, skin, hair, and nails. Each part of the body you work on has a wide range of treatments you have the skills to apply. You begin with a consultation between you and your client. Then, based on their goals and areas for concern you recommend treatments. For example, if a client has a problem with acne you will devise a treatment plan for them, as well as giving them care regimes to follow between visits to the salon. You may carry out massage and aromatherapy treatments for relaxation, circulation, and comfort. Hair removal can be a part of your work, most beauty therapists can remove hair through waxing, plucking or even with laser hair removal. You can apply makeup in a wide range of styles, as well as offer nail treatments. While working at the salon you take responsibility for some of the administrative tasks. For instance, you will help out on reception, with maintenance, bookkeeping, and taking payments


  • Consulting with your clients
  • Giving advice for beauty maintenance
  • Providing a broad roster of beauty treatments 
  • Making referrals to other professionals if appropriate
  • Carrying out general administration duties at the salon

Skills for Success

A successful beauty therapist has a passion for personal care, and for carrying out a wide range of beauty treatments. You enjoy pampering people and you have good social skills to engage with your clients in a positive way. Personal appearance is a sensitive topic and people come to the salon to have a treatment and leave feeling better. You should be ready to help them to achieve their goals, by listening to what they want to achieve. Beauty therapists need to have a broad skill set and able to give a wide range of quality services. You might give skin treatments, hair treatments, nails, and makeup. 

Skills and attributes

  • Diplomatic and discreet
  • Excellent people skills
  • Neat and tidy appearance
  • Clear communicator, good listener
  • Skilled at administering treatments, makeup, grooming

What do Beauty Therapists earn in Australia?

In Australia, beauty therapists earn a median wage of $44,399 per year. This varies according to a number of factors and is intended as a reference only, from Payscale 05/’18.

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