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How to Stay Confident When Learning New Skills as a Stylist

Confidence as a stylist-SALT
If you’re new to the hair industry or fresh out of cosmetology school, there’s a lot for you to learn. Sometimes, the sheer amount of information you’re expected to know can be downright intimidating. Unfortunately, this can make it difficult for new stylists to remain confident when starting their careers.

The good news is that it gets easier. While it’s impossible to learn all there is to know about hair (the industry is always evolving and new trends pop up often, after all), that shouldn’t make you feel discouraged. There’s always room for growth and development!

We know that staying confident throughout this process isn’t always easy. So, here’s a deeper look at how to develop your skills as a new stylist while staying confident in your abilities.

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Skills for New Stylists

The core skill sets that all new stylists should focus on developing include:

  • Cutting
  • Color
  • Styling
  • Extensions
  • Communication
  • And Marketing

Technical skills like cutting, color, styling, and extensions are of course essential to be able to provide your clients with the services they’re looking for. Rather than specializing in one skill set early on in your career, like cutting for example, it’s important to build a range of knowledge so you can offer more benefits to your clients.

Other skills like effective communication and marketing can be thought of as “soft skills” that will allow you to become more successful in your career. Communication skills, for instance, are key to conducting thorough hair consultations and setting realistic expectations for each client that sits in your chair. This can make all the difference between a slam dunk appointment and a miscommunication that costs you your client’s satisfaction.

Marketing is another soft skill that new stylists should invest time in developing. At the end of the day, you’re not just an artist, you’re a businessperson too. Learning how to leverage your social media presence, a salon website, and even referral programs and help you build and maintain clientele so that you can build a successful business doing what you love.

Staying Confident as a New Stylist

When it comes to developing all of the skills listed above, it’s important to remain confident. However, we know that this can be easier said than done. If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed or discouraged throughout this process, there are a few things you can do to help build up your confidence.

Confidence as a stylist

The first step in feeling more confident in your abilities is to take an audit of what you’re feeling most discouraged by. Is your environment conducive to learning? Are the people around you holding you back? Are you not getting the results you’re looking for? Or, have you simply set unrealistic expectations for yourself?

Asking yourself these questions will help you get to the root of your dissatisfaction so you can address the underlying issue and continue to move forward. If you feel like your work environment is allowing you room for growth or the people surrounding you are holding you back, for instance, it might be time to look for a mentor that can guide you along the way. Or, if you’re feeling discouraged by the results you’re getting when trying new skills, taking a dedicated course or workshop in that area can provide you the extra education you need to reach your goals.

You might be tired of hearing this advice, but a key piece of developing your skills and building your confidence is practice. If you’re not ready to try a new technique out on a client, grab a mannequin and test your skills. Don’t be afraid to keep trying until you get the results you’re after. Most importantly, don’t forget that progress doesn’t happen overnight—set realistic expectations and timelines for your goals so you don’t end up disappointed in your progress.

Finally, don’t forget to celebrate your wins! No matter how small the victory, seeing that you’re able to accomplish your goals is a surefire way to get you excited about learning.

Resources for Beginners

If you’re looking to start developing your skills as a new stylist, there are so many resources available for all skill levels. As you search for learning tools to help guide your development, it can be useful to tailor your search to your skill level and the specific technique you’re hoping to learn. Once you’ve built a solid foundation of knowledge, you can build upon your learning to advance to more complex techniques.

Here are some of our favorite articles to help you get started:

Take Charge of Your Learning

As a new stylist, there’s so much for you to learn—you shouldn’t feel discouraged by this fact, though! Instead, taking charge of your learning will empower you to hone your skills and build your confidence as you establish yourself in your career.

As you begin to focus on developing your skills, leverage the resources available to you to hit the ground running. Whether that includes mentors, classes, workshops, or something else, there will always be opportunities to learn something new.

Want more great balayage tips and advice? Download our Balayage Root Color Tips PDF, or consider signing up for one of our balayage classes or workshops!

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