Enrollment
req

Calm your nerves with the following answers to these common cosmetology school enrollment questions. No matter what kind of program you are interested in, you will need to understand the factors that can impact start dates and application requirements. You may have questions, such as ‘How old do I have to be to go to beauty school?’ or ‘Do I need a high school diploma?’ We address those questions, and more, right here. There are many types of programs, and many different things to think about during the enrollment process. Before you get overwhelmed, check out these quick FAQ’s...

 

Enrollment

01. Application | Start Date
What are some factors that impact enrollment and start dates?

The actual enrollment dates vary at every beauty school. You will need to contact schools near you to speak with their admissions representatives and schedule a tour. When you speak to each school, ask about actual dates your program of interest will begin at their campus, and about any application deadlines in order to begin school on the date you want. There is no one uniform enrollment date, schedule or policy for every beauty school program.

In addition, enrollment dates often may vary depending on other factors, such as:

  • Class Size – Some schools must wait until a class reaches a certain number of students before they can begin.
  • State Licensing Requirements – Every state has different requirements for program lengths, which can affect the enrollment schedule at a school.
  • Programs Offered by the School – Some programs take longer than others, and may have start dates further apart than shorter programs.

The application process is usually much simpler and more straightforward for beauty programs compared to traditional four-year universities. While you still may have to complete an interview with an admissions adviser, there are other hassles that you may not have that could slow down the process. For example, you likely will not have to write essays for your application to enroll at most schools.

There are some basic components to the enrollment process used by a majority of beauty schools. Here are the steps you should know:

  • Fill out the school’s application form
  • Submit the application by mail, online or in person
  • Interview with an admissions adviser
  • Pass an entrance examination or aptitude test, if applicable
  • Complete the FAFSA and any other financial aid applications
  • Pay applicable enrollment and tuition fees
  • Set up financing, loans or a payment plan with the school
  • Sign an enrollment contract with the school
  • Start school!

During the enrollment process, we highly recommend taking a tour of the campuses you’re comparing. Touring a school can be done on in a group one of the pre-scheduled dates set by the school, or you can set up a one-on-one appointment with the admissions reps at most schools.

To find out enrollment dates at the schools near you, click the “Find Schools” button below. An admissions counselor will be in touch with you after you submit your contact form. He or she will let you know about the school’s specific application requirements, and help you set up a time to actually visit the school and get all your questions answered.

Once you have chosen a school, complete all of the steps of the enrollment process as soon as possible. This will help ensure that you get a seat in the next upcoming class for your beauty program. An admissions counselor can be your "go-to" person to make sure that you have completed all of your requirements for enrollment, and to answer any questions you have. He or she can also help you complete requirements that you do not understand or are posing an obstacle to you.

What are the application deadlines and enrollment dates for beauty school?

Beauty School Enrollment Schedules

When you can’t get the dream of becoming a cosmetologist out of your head, it may be time to contact beauty schools near you and find out when their next classes begin. The enrollment schedule for beauty schools tends to be different from the usual semester-based enrollment schedule at community colleges and four-year universities. At cosmetology schools, classes begin at various points throughout the year and you can apply for admission at any time. Beauty Schools Directory has done the research, and we break it down for you below!

Applications, Enrollment, & Start Dates for Beauty/Cosmetology School

Enrollment Year-Round

One benefit of applying for a beauty school program is that you can usually apply to enroll at any time of the year, without having to hit hard deadlines prior to a semester start date. Beauty schools will often allow you to enroll for the next available class for your program without a long wait period.

The time from application to enrollment will depend on factors like the program you choose, because each program is a different length. For example, full cosmetology programs typically require 1500 to 2000 hours to complete and can take anywhere from 1 to 2 years. Whereas esthetics and nail tech programs tend to be much shorter, in the 300 to 600-hour range, so they may enroll as often as every 3 to 6 months.

This means that if you want to be admitted into a comprehensive cosmetology program, then you may be enrolled in the middle of the year and have to wait a few months to start in the next available class. For an esthetics program that takes just six months to complete, you may not have to wait as long between application/enrollment and actually starting class. Some schools even admit students right away and have students at varying stages of the class all at once.

Contact Beauty School Admissions for More Information

Beauty school admissions counselors are at every school, ready and waiting to help you. The admissions reps at the schools you’re researching can give you a schedule with all the important upcoming academic dates for the beauty school. This will help you stay aware of the upcoming deadlines, the application process, and your current stage in the process. You can also receive help from the admissions counselor in choosing a start date for your application.

If you have any other questions about beauty school programs, then get in touch with a beauty school admissions advisor today, who can answer all of your questions and respond to your concerns. Whether you have questions about filling out the application properly, or are concerned about fulfilling education requirements or affording beauty school, an admissions counselor can ease your concerns and help you complete the application process in time to enroll for the next start date.

What records or documents should I bring with me to apply for beauty school?

Schools typically require you to produce a driver’s license or other state-issued identification and your high school diploma or GED. If you cannot produce your diploma or GED, you may be asked to show high school transcripts. Some schools ask for social security number, but that is typically on the financial aid forms you can fill out to apply for tuition assistance. The FAFSA links directly to the IRS nowadays, so you shouldn’t even need to bring your (or your parents’) tax records in to the school apply for financial aid – just your ID. If you are not yet 18 years of age, you may need parental consent. Some schools ask for letters of recommendation along with your beauty school application. If you are transferring your hours from one beauty school to another, you will need to provide a transcript with proof of hours from your previous school. Depending on your state board of cosmetology’s regulations, you may need your prior school’s bills paid in full in order for them to release the hours. On some beauty school applications, we have heard of video essays, written essays, short answer questions, and aptitude tests being part of the application process, but this is on a school by school basis, not an industry standard.

Transferring Beauty Schools

Enrollment Year-Round

One benefit of applying for a beauty school program is that you can usually apply to enroll at any time of the year, without having to hit hard deadlines prior to a semester start date. Beauty schools will often allow you to enroll for the next available class for your program without a long wait period.

The time from application to enrollment will depend on factors like the program you choose, because each program is a different length. For example, full cosmetology programs typically require 1500 to 2000 hours to complete and can take anywhere from 1 to 2 years. Whereas esthetics and nail tech programs tend to be much shorter, in the 300 to 600-hour range, so they may enroll as often as every 3 to 6 months.

This means that if you want to be admitted into a comprehensive cosmetology program, then you may be enrolled in the middle of the year and have to wait a few months to start in the next available class. For an esthetics program that takes just six months to complete, you may not have to wait as long between application/enrollment and actually starting class. Some schools even admit students right away and have students at varying stages of the class all at once..

02. Age Requirement
How old do I have to be to enroll in cosmetology school?

Most schools require you to be at least 16 years of age and have a high school diploma or GED. Even if your cosmetology school of choice doesn't have an age requirement, it's possible that your state cosmetology board does. When in doubt, it's always best to ask your home state's board of cosmetology what their minimum age requirements are.

If you're wondering if you're too old for beauty school - the answer is NOPE! It is never too late to pursue the career you really want. We have found that many people discover that a cosmetology career is their passion later in life, often after trying other careers that weren’t the right fit. Some people also raise a family before deciding to go to beauty school. There are many reasons that you may not start beauty school right of high school, but whatever the reason, schools will be happy to have you on their rosters. Don’t let your age hold you back from having a career you really care about.

Age Requirements for Cosmetology School

03. Education Requirement
Do I need a high school diploma or GED to attend cosmetology school?

Whether you need a high school diploma or GED to attend beauty school depends on the state in which you wish to attend school. The education level required varies from state to state. Some states, like Illinois, do not require a high school diploma, but you may have to take an additional test to be admitted to the schools if you haven't graduated or gotten your GED yet. Other states such as Montana require students to either have a high school diploma or GED to apply and be admitted to cosmetology schools. In general, though, it is safe to assume that either your home state or the schools you're considering will require a high school diploma or GED to enroll in beauty school.

We often get asked if you can go to beauty school with a GED, and in almost every state and almost every school, a GED is perfectly fine. GED stands for “General Educational Development,” and once you pass the five subject tests, you can get your high school equivalency credential, which certifies that you have attained a high school education.

High School Diploma or GED for Cosmetology School Video

If you meet these criteria and you’re ready to start comparing schools, click the button below to get a list of beauty schools near you.

Can I attend cosmetology classes if I'm still in high school?

Some progressive beauty schools may have special programs at their facility that allow high school students to take select classes and get a feel for the world of cosmetology, but typically dual enrollment in high school and cosmetology school is rare. However, there are vocational technology schools in many communities that allow students to get a head start on their beauty careers by letting students study cosmetology in high school or a vo-tech school. This is a great article on Getting a Head Start on Cosmetology in High School for more information. These high school cosmetology classes can be great preparation for getting your full cosmetology education at a beauty school.

Some high school students also choose to start their own Cosmetology Club at their high schools to get a head start. Sometimes club members read and discuss articles about education, licensing and careers in the beauty business, and other times they try to practice the skills taught in YouTube beauty tutorials. Starting your own cosmetology club can be a great resume booster and look good on your application to beauty school.

When you are a junior or senior in high school is the best time to start researching, comparing and contacting beauty schools near you. If you are approaching your high school graduation, it’s time to start thinking about next steps. Click the button below to find schools near you and start figuring out which school is right for you.

Other frequently asked question topics