The eyelash extension industry is booming, valued at over $1 billion annually and still growing. Many individuals interested in the beauty trade have turned to lash certifications to access additional income and even provide career changes.
There are many great opportunities for careers with a lash certification. A few of these options include:
- Eyelash technician
- Eyelash technician trainer
- Business owner
- Media marketer
- Makeup artist
Getting a lash certification is a relatively simple process with tremendous rewards. Read on to learn more about getting a lash certification and the five wonderful career opportunities it can provide.
What Does It Take to Get a Lash Certification?
Although the requirements vary by state, there are generally three steps to getting your lash certification. These include variations of:
- Doing some research
- Enrolling in a certification class
- Pass a licensing exam
These may seem straightforward, but there are caveats to everything in the beauty industry, and lash certification is no different. Below, find more detailed explanations of these steps.
Identify Your State's Requirements
First, it’s essential to do your research. Each state (and possibly region) will have specific requirements for obtaining a lash certification. For example, some states require lash-certified individuals to be licensed cosmetologists or estheticians before being lash certified. This will add a considerable amount of time to becoming certified.
Below are a few examples of different requirements by state.
|Washington||Individuals must be licensed estheticians or cosmetologists prior to training for lash certification.|
|California||Individuals must be licensed estheticians or cosmetologists or enrolled in a concurrent program at the time of lash certification training.|
|Florida||No required lash certification, but requires a license in any of the following to apply eyelash extensions:
• Facial specialist
• Medical license
• Full specialist
|New York||Individual must have an esthetician license and a cosmetology license to become lash certified.|
As you can see, the requirements vary wildly between states. Make sure to do sufficient research before becoming lash certified in order to make sure you aren’t missing any steps.
Sign Up for A Certification Course
After you’ve discovered your state’s specific requirements, find an accredited course, and enroll. These can be online, such as Sassy Wink’s Lash Extension course but you can also find in-person courses to provide the highest level of training and hands-on experience. (Here are some more lash certification online courses for you to choose from!)
These courses can get expensive, especially if you choose to add other ones on. Some additional training options include:
- Lash lift training
- Lash tint training
- Eyebrow threading
If you are simply looking for an eyelash extension course, you can plan to spend $250-$1,000. They almost always come with a “starter kit” of products that you take with you afterward.
(Do lash extensions ruin your lashes? Find out the answer here!)
Pass your Course Exam
At the end of the lash certification course, you will likely be required to take a written exam to prove your knowledge and understanding of the process, along with applying a complete set of lashes under the watchful eye of the trainer.
Suppose your state requires a cosmetology and/or esthetician license before becoming lash certified. In that case, you will also need to complete those specific hours and requirements and pass those exams offered by the state.
How Long Does It Take to Get Lash Certified?
The length of time required to get a lash certification will vary depending on training schedules and state-by-state requirements. You can expect to spend 1-3 days getting certified to do eyelashes.
Often, these courses are a comprehensive class that includes many aspects above and beyond the method of lash application. They generally include thorough training on all of the following:
- Sanitation procedures before and after the appointment
- Preparation before clients arrive
- Application of the lashes
- Aftercare and general lash knowledge
Often during the certification course, students will practice on volunteers and classmates while being overseen by the trainers to ensure proper methods are being used. The size of the class and the length of the sessions will determine whether the class is a one-day, 8-hour course or a full three days.
However, keep in mind that if your state requires prior licensures before a lash certification, you need to complete those hours before you can embark on the lash certification course.
Esthetician licenses generally include an average of 600-700 hours of training, along with their own exams. Cosmetology licensure includes anywhere from 1,000-2,000 training hours as well as exams. The length of these programs will depend on whether you are a full or part-time student, and they can take anywhere from 6 months to several years to complete.
5 Great Careers with a Lash Certification
After obtaining a lash certification, there are many options for a fulfilling and wonderful career.
- Lash technicians work in salons and provide eyelash extension sets and fills to clients.
- A lash technician trainer travels around (or online) and provides guidance and certification to other aspiring lash technicians.
- A small business owner can build on the lash certification foundation to create a dynamic business model to build and fulfill their dream career.
- A lash media marketer utilizes the booming social media industry to supplement income or establish a large following that can pay the bills. Knowledge of lashes and procedures is valuable in this career path.
- A professional makeup artist can expand their client base and income by completing a lash certification course.
Below we will delve into each of these careers in more detail.
1. A Career as a Lash Technician
Getting your lash certification can result in the most obvious career choice: a lash technician. Becoming a lash technician is well worth the initial investment in training and certification.
The average lash technician makes around $46,000 annually, or between $23 and $24 an hour. This doesn’t include tips, which generally average 15-20% of each service.
The scheduling is flexible, much like other jobs in the beauty industry. Average lash extension appointments range from 30-minute fills to 2+ hours for a full set. Recurring clients will return every three to six weeks for a fill, so once clientele is built up, the rotation of fills will supply a steady stream of income.
This career is perfect for detail-oriented individuals who want to develop lasting relationships with their clients and don’t mind repetitive activities.
2. Become a Lash Technician Trainer
After becoming lash certified, you also can continue gaining knowledge and passing it along to others in the industry. Becoming a lash extension certification trainer will provide opportunities to meet other cosmetologist, esthetician, and lash professionals.
(Thinking about getting your own extensions? Here are some things to know before getting lash extensions!)
The best way to go about becoming a lash trainer is to first take the course and become certified yourself. After being certified, find a company that aligns the best with your area and carries product you approve of.
Many of these lash extension companies have their own sets of trainers that they deploy to train groups of beauticians all over. So, not only will you work with lashes, but will be surrounded by like-minded individuals and provide them with certification training.
Last certification trainer salaries will range depending on the company you are hired with but are generally around $45,000 a year. If you choose to plan and offer your own training sessions, you can make anywhere from $200-$1,000 per person, plus selling your kits and products to the students.
This career path is excellent for individuals who love to teach, are always on the go, and enjoy meeting new people. It can also offer the ability to travel regularly.
3. Small Business Owner
Rather than renting a stall or a spot in a salon to carry out your lash business, you may want to strike out on your own.
Owning your own small business with your lash certification has a variety of benefits, including:
- Low overhead
- Products to sell
Along with the income that comes with charging for lash application services, there are also maintenance products that can be stocked and sold. As the owner, you have the opportunity to carry your choice of lash products; there are a vast array of companies that provide products and aftercare.
You may also choose to incorporate other services in your lash business, such as lash lifts or tints. With the flexibility of owning your own business, you can cater to many different clients and diversify your services whenever you want.
This career path is excellent for individuals who want to be their own boss, have a wealth of experience, and feel confident in managing their career from taxes and accounting, to promoting themselves.
4. Lash Media Marketing
With the lash industry continuing to boom and outgrowing many other cosmetic procedures, there is a larger market than ever of individuals eager to learn all about lash extensions.
With your lash certification, you have the knowledge to share with others while perfecting your own lash technician career.
Many successful lash artists or companies have a following across social media platforms. This is also a great way to supplement your lash income. Documenting the process can be a great way to connect with other like-minded people outside of your immediate area.
Options for media varies across many different platforms, including:
- Instagram Live
- E-Book (Amazon)
- YouTube video series
By choosing one or more of these platforms to provide content, you will grow your business and your career with a lash certification. Many professionals watch their lash appointment waitlist multiply with the addition of new followers.
This career path is ideal for someone who wants to grow their income and popularity, and for those who are comfortable with the influencer path and new technology. Individuals in this career path must have consistent time to dedicate to making new and consistent content.
5. Enhance Your Professional Makeup Artist Skillset
If you choose more of a cosmetic/makeup-based career path, a lash certification will greatly enhance this. You will have the ability to add eyelashes to any type of client, offering additional options including:
- Bold and dramatic theater lashes
- Runway-ready model makeup
- Brides and bridal parties
- Everyday client fills
The flexibility that comes with being able to cater to many different styles is a great way to grow your career. Many makeup artists average $14-$16 per hour for clients. If working in the theater or model realm, that number can jump up to $35 per hour, reaching even over $100,000 annually.
Reaching more clients = making more money, and a lash certification can help to get you there.
Provide your clients the confidence in your abilities and stand out over other makeup artists with a lash certification in addition to your makeup artist experience.
No matter what route you choose to take with a lash certification, you can be sure that it will only enhance your career opportunities. This certification opens many doors to fit many different lifestyles and career goals, so you are sure to find a career that checks all of your boxes with a lash certification.