If you’re looking to get started on a manicurist’s lucrative and fulfilling career path, you’ll need to find an accredited nail technician program to get started. With so many options available, you’re probably not sure which is the right program for you.
That’s why we’ve compiled a list of things to consider when looking for your dream nail technician program.
1 – Consider Price
One of the many benefits of pursuing a career as a nail tech is the lower cost of education. While other career paths require expensive four-year degrees, nail technical programs are much shorter and cheaper. You should consider what you can reasonably afford (both now and after school).
While you shouldn’t necessarily pick the cheapest program and go, price is an important factor. If the schools you’re researching don’t publish their prices online, there’s several factors that might give you an idea:
- Total Required Course Hours. Take a look at your school’s program and your state’s course hour requirements. Since a lot of pricing is based on the number of course hours per semester, this should give you an idea what it’ll cost.
- Full-time vs. Part-time Attendance. While part-time might be cheaper per semester, it’ll take you longer to graduate.
- The equipment and facilities the program uses. More equipment and more high-tech facilities will usually equate to higher fees, but you’ll probably get more bang for your buck.
- The school’s private, public, for-profit, and/or an established brand institute. Private colleges are usually more expensive than public schools, and for-profit colleges are more expensive than non-profit schools.
2 – Consider Connections
Another important consideration is what kind of connections your school has with professional brands and local institutions. This will help you network before you even graduate, and could prove invaluable in your job search.
Do some research and try to determine what nail brands your school works with, what connections they have with the community, and what opportunities you’ll have to work with them.
3 – Consider Location
If your school has an established reputation with its local community, getting a job in that community will be easier once you graduate. Do some research and see how many nail salons are in the area around your prospective school.
If it’s a veritable wasteland, then you might have a harder time finding a job after you graduate.
4 – Consider Program Length
In terms of classes, you’ll want to make sure you have enough to cover everything you’ll need or want to know about manicuring. But you don’t want a nail technician program that wastes your time and postpones your career.
In terms of months, years, or semesters, your program should ideally have an adjustable timeframe. The best programs should let you take classes part-time or full-time. You should be able to work and preserve your mental health while taking classes. If this means only attending part-time, then that should be an option available to you.
5 – Consider Curriculum
Like we said earlier, a nail technician program should include everything you need to know about becoming a nail tech. This includes not only the practical skills you’ll need, but also specific knowledge about the nails and skin.
The skills you need include (but are not limited to)…
- Nail art.
- Gel & acrylic nail applications.
- Cleaning nails.
- Trimming and filing nails.
- Polishing and buffing nails.
- Moisturizing hands and feet.
- Light massages for the hands and feet.
- Sterilizing your workstation.
The knowledge you’ll need includes (but is not limited to)…
- Skin anatomy.
- Common skin disorders.
- Hygienic principles.
- Public health knowledge and statutes.
- Nail technology
- Massage theory.
All these skills and all this information will be relevant on the job, so be sure your program includes everything on their curriculum.
Choosing a nail tech program is the first step in your career, so you’ll want to make the right choice. To learn more about the program at Chattanooga College, visit our program page. You can schedule a no-obligation appointment with an advisor, so you can learn if our program is right for you.