Behind the scenes in the beauty business

Behind the scenes in the beauty business

Changing lifestyles, higher purchasing power and a need to look our best has resulted in a boom in the beauty business. Today, both men and women are valuable customers of the beauty and cosmetic industry. Beauty regimens are no longer restricted to home remedies and monthly haircuts at the neighbourhood salon. The industry has, undoubtedly, grown exponentially in terms of availability of products, manufacture and marketing. But there is a need for trained professionals.

For beginners

A certificate programme, offered by Future Group’s FLDL (Future Learning and Development Limited) wing, hopes to meet this demand. The 18-week certificate programme covers topics ranging from products and processes, soft skills, managerial/ leadership training, sales and customer skills and job-oriented skills. “Though the course is only entry level, it offers 12 weeks of on-the-job training sessions, lectures and group discussions,” says C K Kurien,  General Manager of FLDL. “The industry is unorganised with very few practising stylists who have undergone professional training. Very few know the nuances of the industry.We want to give those interested a wide view of all that the industry has to offer,” he explains.

The four-month course has a special focus on soft skill training. “Every beautician needs to be able to communicate with his/her customers and offer accurate beauty advice,” adds Kurien. The Soft Skills module includes Conversational English, Communicative Skills and Relationship Building.

Eligibility and access

The course is open to anyone with a passion for hairstyling and related fields. The only criteria is age. Applicants must be 18 years or above. “We will also help individuals set up shop, in this case, a salon or a spa,” says Kurien. The course costs Rs 55,000 (Rs 57,000 if paid through installments). Those interested can take up the course at any of the three institutes in Bangalore, Kolkata and Ahmedabad.

A person with a certificate course can expect a starting salary of Rs 8,000.
Once candidates successfully complete the programme, FLDL promises placements at salons across the country. The last week of the course will be spent preparing candidates for interviews through mock-up sessions with professional stylists in the industry.

“We no more have to choose only between engineering or medicine when it comes to careers. Thanks to changing lifestyles, there is room for a career in beauty as well,” says Kurien. The team behind the programme believes the Rs 4000-crore beauty business has plenty to offer. With over 65,000 salons in India, and over 250 new beauty products being released into the market every year, there can never be a dearth of job opportunities.


Hard work first, glamour next

“It takes a lot of energy and stamina to be a full fledged stylist. You’re on your feet for 8-10 hours a day and you must be attentive to the smallest need of your clients,” says Dilshad Pastakia, stylist to actors  like Shah Rukh Khan, Priyanka Chopra and Rani Mukherjee.

Dilshad entered the beauty business 24 years ago when she began working at her mother’s salon in Mumbai. She learnt the ropes on the job for a few years in India and went on to do advanced courses in hair and make up in London and Hong Kong.
“There are only entry-level courses in the beauty business in India. We are an emerging market. Moreover, the beauty industry does not cater to women alone. Men are increasingly conscious of the way they look. So, the industry has a lot of promise.”
Career options for trained professionals, Dilshad says, include

*Salon manager
*Fitness instructor
*Beauty therapist
*Beauty counsellor
*Nail technician
*Pedicurist
*Spa manager
*Cosmetics manager
*Spa trainer
*Massage therapist

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