As an aspiring cosmetologist, how many times have people sang “Beauty School Dropout” to you?

As it turns out, and we’re sure you’ve noticed, cosmetology in the United States is extremely subjective and stereotyped. In some cases, it leads to hilarious movie scenes — Legally Blonde comes to mind — but it also creates harmful ideas that damage the beauty industry.

At South and North Hills Beauty Academy, we’re highly trained professionals and skilled instructors. In the first part of this two-part blog, we’re going to break down some of the most detrimental myths people perpetuate about pursuing a career as a cosmetologist.

We suggest bookmarking this blog, because we’re about to provide you with the perfect counterarguments to politely fend off disapproving relatives at this year’s family reunion.

Uncle Bill — it’s shocking he never learned to chew with his mouth closed — says:

You’re not going to make any money and you’ll have to live with your parents forever!

You should reply:

It’s true that the average salary of a beautician is $30,000 – $45,840 annually. Depending on your skill set, the market, and the avenue of beauty that you pursue, the money to be made can be well above average! Many cosmetologists live lucrative lives in their own apartment.

Aunt Cheryl — looks like she’s decided to quit waxing her lip…good for her — says:

Your only option with beauty school is to be a hairdresser.

You should reply:

Hair styling is definitely an option with a cosmetology degree! However, there are many different avenues and diverse career paths to choose once you’ve obtained your cosmetology degree. Just to name a few, many graduates go on to be salon managers, brand representatives, makeup artists, beauty bloggers/writers/editors, beauty school instructors, and platform artists.

Grandpa — awww, look, he let the kids decorate his walker with cat stickers — says:

There’s no demand for beauticians, you won’t get a job!

You should reply:

Grandpa, did you know that the beauty industry is projected to grow faster than the average for all other occupations? In fact, US News predicts that 58,400 new cosmetologists will be needed by the year 2024 to meet beauty service demands. Plus, our jobs can never be shipped overseas because cosmetology is a personal, face-to-face service by nature.

Cousin Julia — it’s a miracle her eyes haven’t rolled out of head yet — says:

You’re just choosing beauty school because it’s easier than getting a real degree.

You should reply:

First of all, no. Students enrolled in cosmetology school study anatomy, chemistry, business, sanitation, and more. It’s a rigorous, knowledge-packed program that challenges students to memorize terms and techniques. In order to graduate and receive a license, students must be able to stay upbeat, efficient, creative, focused, and amicable while standing on their feet for over eight hours a day, every day.

People may laugh and make jokes, but ultimately, pursuing a career in cosmetology, just like with any other career, is as challenging and lucrative as you personally make it to be. If you’re up for it, there’s money to made, room to grow, and knowledge to be gained! Not to mention the people you’ll meet, the friends you’ll make, and the room for creativity. Start your career as a cosmetologist by enrolling in classes today!