How to Build a Cosmetology Portfolio That Will Leave a Lasting Impression.
Something that not a lot of beauty professionals or artists in training realize is the importance of a strong, organized portfolio.
Your first interview is a very important part of the hiring process. An interview is the employers first opportunity to get to know you better as a person versus just a piece of paper. Here is where they observe your mannerisms, your communication skills, and the way your dress. Keep in mind, your portfolio and resume are what got you in that interview chair in the first place! Your portfolio should highlight the creative work and experience you have created so far. An organized portfolio also gives current and future clients more confidence in your work.
Follow these simple steps to building the perfect beauty presentation and leave a lasting impression.
1.) Create an Amazing Photo Gallery
Your photo gallery is going to be the most important section of your portfolio. Make sure to include between 10-15 sets of looks you’ve created including both before and afters. Make sure they are some of your more dramatic transformations and even a couple that aren’t so traditional. This shows your interviewer that you are versatile and love to be creative. The more diversification you can show, the better! Also, make sure your gallery matches the job you’re applying for. If you’re interviewing for a position as a nail technician, please don’t provide any photos of the hair styles you’ve created, regardless of the magic you worked. If you’re applying for a job at a barber shop, maybe consider showcasing looks that involve using shears and razor cuts to highlight your precision and steady hand. Tailor your portfolio and resume to fit the job, even if that means having 3-5 different versions ready to use.
2.) Be confident in Yourself!
An interview is one of the very few times where it is acceptable to brag about yourself a little bit. Your photos only tell half of your story whereas your experience tells the rest.
- Your Resume
Make sure it’s up to date, with all your most recent and relevant experience listed from most recent to least. Include any internships and volunteer experience, as well as any certification classes you’ve taken. Make sure it’s free of errors or typos or text out of alignment. Your font should be basic and easy to read and should be consistent. If possible, try and make your resume one page– anything longer typically gets overlooked or thrown out.
If you’ve received any awards for styling, creativity, customer service, reliability or even attendance, showcase that in your portfolio. Have you participated in a design/ style competition? Were you a school ambassador? These demonstrate not only self-motivation and enthusiasm for the industry but also that you won’t shy away from a good challenge!
- Projects and Activities
Do you manage social media for your salon? Did you create a promotional contest or campaign to attract new clients? Have you done any educational outreach in the community or at local schools? Did you organize your salons’ monthly charity drive? By participating in projects and activities, you show passion and dedication to your craft while showing loyalty to your employers.
- Licenses and certificates
Once you earn your cosmetology license, make sure you make a few copies that can be passed out to future employers during your interviews. If you have a license in a related field such as barbering, or have earned additional certificates from taking classes, make sure you include those too. Also include anything from a lash or hair extension certification or maybe even microdermabrasion on the skin care side! Licenses and extra certifications show that you’re serious about your career and the investment you’re making in yourself.
3) Keep a Hard and Digital Copy
It is important to have a digital copy of your portfolio and resume ready to go. It’s more accessible to employers, especially if you have it linked to your website or social media accounts. Additionally, when it comes time to updating your information and experience, which you should do every six months or so, having a digital copy will cut down on your editing time tremendously versus having to start from scratch each time.
Don’t lose that physical copy, though! You should have a physical copy with you at each interview you go on, even if you have already sent a digital copy to your potential employer. Keep your physical copy looking sharp by storing it in a 3 ring binder with dividers to help your interviewer navigate the pages easier.
If you’re ready to add to that other key piece of your resume and portfolio– your licenses and certifications– then you have found your answer with Creative Images Institute of Cosmetology. To learn more, please call 888-569-2413 or visit our contact page to fill out our contact form.