This page is for new and experienced cosmetologists! I feel that everyone, no matter how long they’ve been doing something, can always learn from someone else regardless of experience level.

I like to share what I’ve learned with other stylists in the industry because something so simple could change their career or help them take it to the next level.


Scroll down the page or click on a topic below:


💋Tips, Techniques, & Tutorials

💋Events & Classes

💋Tools for Success

💋References & Publications

💋Become an Educator




American Board of Certified Haircolorists

The certification of haircolorist has long been a vision of many professionals in our industry. Our goal is to establish a standard by which to judge competence and to acknowledge the level of excellence achieved in haircolor, thus creating credibility in the eyes of the consumer.

The title of American Board Certified Haircolorist sets qualified individuals apart from the masses and establish a higher level of professionalism and credibility for the consumer. As in all professions, the consumer will seek out those certified for their expert knowledge and service excellence.

American Board of Certified Haircolorists

Experience counts!

This certification was one that I didn’t know about until my manager told us about an upcoming prep class for the exam. It was a long and hard journey, but SO worth it!

I learned so much and gained a lot of confidence in my abilities. Even if you think you are already a “great haircolorist”, you will realize that you were nowhere near your full potential until you start ABCH classes!


You should prepare for this exam a minimum of 6 months and take it very seriously.

Only 20% of stylists pass it the first time!


Here are a few links to help you get certified:

Certified Haircolorist Exam & Prep Materials

ABCH Online Practice Exams

Register for Certification!

2017 Examination Dates & Locations:

  • March 31, 2019- Chicago, IL
  • August 25, 2019- Boston, MA
  • September 15, 2019- Los Angeles, CA

*ABCH does not certify based on any one color line and they do not train you for one color line. You will be trained to know how to perfectly formulate color with any brand you choose! 


Redken Professional Certifications


Redken Exchange, NY

Looking to set yourself apart from the rest?

Redkens certification programs support you on your journey to learn better, earn better and live better.

To recognize and reward gifted and passionate stylists and help them promote their exceptional skills, Redken offers certification in both Haircolor and Design as well as stylist achievement levels.

There’s a certain level of acclaim associated with being Redken Certified.

As a member of this elite group of professionals, you’ll be recognized for your expertise and your commitment to excellence. Consumers will view you and your salon as prestigious and preferred, via your profile listing on the Salon Finder on

Redken Exchange Certification Programs:

  • Redken Stylist
  • Redken Specialist
  • Redken Authority
  • Redken Certified
  • Redken Artist
  • Haircolor Certification
  • Design Certification

Certification FAQ’s

Register for Certification!


💋Tips, Techniques, & Tutorials



More tips & techniques coming soon!

💋Events & Classes

Redken Exchange Specialized Courses

Redken Specialty Classes are offered in cutting, coloring, and styling! They offer a tuition payment plan so you can get the education you’re yearning for without stressing over how to pay. There is HUGE value in education when it comes to trades….especially when you want to set yourself apart from the rest! What seems like a lot of money will be well worth it when you see the results.

Redken Course Calendar


Redken Professional Online Learning

Step-by-step haircolor techniques, formulations, shade charts, & more! Special sections include- The Art of the Consultation, Sharpen Your Design Skills, and the Redken Educational App! Membership on the Redken Professionals site is required and free of charge (totally worth it for all of the tools you can access)!

  • Chromatics
  • Steam Infusion
  • Hair Color
  • Design & Finishing
  • Focus On Men
  • Chemistry 
  • Texture
  • Thinning Hair
  • Diamond Oil-The New Dimension of Oil Care


Rusk Education

Offered in 2 formats at industry shows and exclusive distributor locations:

  • Demonstrations
  • Hands on Workshops

If you’re interested in holding a rusk workshop or demonstration at your salon, view Rusk Passport and requirements here! Rusk also has exceptional training DVD’s that will take your haircuts to a whole new level(I’ve watched them and the techniques are life-changing)!

Rusk Trade Show Calendar


💋Tools for Success


Free online appointment book and income tracker!

This is a great tool for those of you that have your own salon, rent a booth, or work on a mobile basis! I use StyleSeat for my in-home salon appointments and my on-site weddings!


ABCH Client Consultation Swatch Chart

ABCH-Consultation-Swatch-ChartThis tool is a MUST, especially if you’re already an American Board Certified Haircolorist, or you’re starting your journey to get certified.

The consultation swatch chart helps you determine natural level, tone, percentage of gray, and more. With this chart, you can show your clients which category their hair type is in and better explain the lightening process.

Instead of telling your client- “We probably won’t be able to get you as blonde as you’d like today, but I’ll do my best and you can come back in a few weeks for round 2.”…you can show them exactly what’s achievable so there won’t be any surprises or “redo’s”!

With this tool at your station you can put your clients minds at ease and be more confident that your color formulation is on point!



Paul Mitchell In-Salon Tool Kit

My favorite tool from Paul Mitchell is their dimensional/block coloring cards. I was introduced to them at the Paul Mitchell School in Virginia Beach, VA and it completely changed the way I looked at haircolor. Block coloring is a great way to add dimension or uniqueness to your basic color applications without traditional foiling techniques!

Paul Mitchell Color Cards

  • Stylist Tip Cards
  • Guest Menu Cards
  • Swatch Charts
  • Education Manuals
  • Product Control
  • Pro Tool Support
  • Material Safety Data Sheets




💋References & Publications

The ABCH Study Portfolio

The study portfolio by the American Board of Certified Haircolorists is mean to guide you through the training process to becoming a certified haircolorist. Even if you don’t plan on taking the exam this is still a great reference for all colorists! It includes experiments (in-text and for home), photo examples, explanation of the chemistry, physiology, and psychology of hair coloring & more!


Haircolor Swatches & References

JOICO Color Manual

KENRA Color Manual


Become an Educator

The first thing you need to do if you haven’t already is take the educator course at your favorite local cosmetology school and get licensed! The process is minute compared to getting your actual cosmetology license and some states don’t even require the class to take the test. That doesn’t mean you won’t have to study though :)!

Next, determine what path you would like to take with your future career in cosmetology education. Are you okay with traveling? Would you prefer to work at a high or trade school with a more basic curriculum and steady hours? Are you interested in a specific company or program… like being a Learning Leader for Paul Mitchell Schools or part of Redkens Artistic Network?

Then get information on how you can reach that goal. Do you need a certain number of years experience, advanced certifications, or employment by the company to be considered for an educator position? That’s a great place to start and can open many doors for you. With goals come motivation, gained experience, and results greater than you planned on!

Cosmetology Instructor Licensing Requirements & Schools by State

Cosmetology Instructor Exam Prep

Paul Mitchell The School- Learning Leaders

Paul Mitchell Advanced Academy Program

  • Makeup Team
  • Color Team
  • Cutting Team
  • Design Team

Redken Artistic Network

Do you have special talents in cosmetology?  Members of the Artist Network teach advanced training to other salon professionals!

Rusk Educator

Is cutting your passion or specialty?  Whether you choose to take a few classes for improvement or decide to become an educator….your skills will transform!

Back to:

  💋Students            💋Future Students

About The Author


Professional Hairstylist | American Board Certified Haircolorist | Makeup Artist | Beauty Blogger

12 Responses to Cosmetologists

  1. tiffany guesby says:

    Hello, I am cosmetologist and I was wondering if you know of any online jobs out there? Or how to start a blog that pays the rest? Thank you, I love your site!!!

    • Erika says:

      There are so many ways to make extra money online if you’re willing to be patient, persistent, and hard-working. If you message me via Instagram or Facebook I’ll gladly give you some advice!

      Thanks for reading!

  2. Ricki says:

    Is there a big difference between the Paul Mitchell hair cutting techniques and the Redken hair cutting techniques?
    Thank you

    • Erika says:

      Yes! All cutting systems have something that makes them unique, but as long as you have a good grasp on the basics of hair cutting…you’ll be able to use them all. Some cutting systems are taught by using degrees, and others are not.

      For example, the Paul Mitchell Cutting System is based on 9 different haircuts. They are all either round, square, or triangle and one-length, layered, or graduated.

  3. Nicole Marie Kruse says:

    Hi! I’m a new stylist and interested in furthering my knowledge asap in color and cuts. I know Salon Centric and Cosmo Prof offer classes now and then, but they are not very often or of great variety. Any other ideas on how I can take classes or who else offers them? I’m in Illinois, about 35 miles south of Chicago. Ty!

    • Erika says:

      Would you like to participate in some online classes if I host them? I get A LOT of e-mails and comments about this, so I will broadcasts some of my classes if I have enough interest!

      On other classes….

      Sometimes they’re very expensive and you have to travel to do them. I drove 3 hours once a week for 6 months in order to prepare for the ABCH Certification. I was ready and I wanted it, so the distance was nothing. I think it cost $800.00 and they took $200.00 per paycheck.

      Cosmo Prof classes are cheaper and closer, just be choosy with which ones you enroll it.

      I’ve been invited to attend classes at another salon(if I knew the owner). You may want to contact some small salons and ask them if they need people to attend classes. They often get free classes for color or from their rep, but don’t have enough people to attend!

  4. Karen Rowsell says:

    I have been a stylist fir almost 29 yrs. I became an instructor then supervisor. My passing rate was between 85 and 100%. I just moved and still interested in helping out all the future stylists. No one’s hiring at the moment any suggestions?

    • Erika Brown says:

      Hi Karen! What area are you in? I feel that in cosmetology there is ALWAYS a job available…unless you’re in the sticks! Check corporate sites, craigslist (I actually found a salon job on there once), apply at Ratner companies as they have several different chains and many locations. Paul Mitchell schools, Aveda, Rusk, and others are great places to look if you want to be an educator. You can even try High School programs….they have benefits and summers off 🙂

  5. Christina Barrick says:

    Can I get regular updates from you?

    • Erika Brown says:

      Of course you can! I am finally finishing up the revamping of my blog and have added social media buttons in the top right corner of my site. There is also a Newsletter that is e-mailed out monthly with fun stuff that isn’t always on my blog.

      Let me know if there is anything else you’d like to see on my blog! I am currently writing articles on Using Bleach, Easy ways to do updos, and more…thanks for reading!

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