Student in red blazer doing styling for a photoshoot

How To Become A Hairdresser

Hairdressing allows you to express your creativity, make people feel beautiful and gives you flexible and diverse employment options. If you haven’t yet looked at hairdressing courses, and you’re unsure how to become a hairdresser, then read on.

Leaving the comfort and security of high school and venturing out into the big wide world can be a frightening time. You don’t know what you want to do, who you want to become, or what career will entice you to be the success you know you’re born to be. Maybe you’ve had some life experience and are ready to embark on a new career or gain some hair skills to go freelancing on the weekends. Whatever your stage in life, a hairdressing career can lead you down some creative career pathways. But first – how to get started.

Salon Support students Ashleigh and Leane talk about their experience starting at Servilles


Is a hairdressing career right for you?

Choosing a career path is not a decision that should be made lightly, which is why it’s a good idea to think long and hard about what you want and how you hope to achieve it. Decide what it is that attracted you to hairdressing as a career choice. Have you become the designated hairstylist amongst your friends? Are you creative? Has someone you know completed a hairdressing course or are in the industry? There’s other skills you’ll need too; being organised, friendly, approachable and good under pressure are all really important aspects to being an amazing stylist. If you’re ticking all the boxes, starting a hairdressing course could be more of a natural next step than you first thought.

Like with any decision, it’s important to do some research. Explore what will be covered within the programmes to get a gauge if it’s for you. If you like what you see, book in for a free tour of the academy below or contact our recruitment team on 0800 SERVILLES or 09 308 0690.


Enrol in the Salon Support (Level 3) programme

While you might be keen to jump into hairdressing and learn everything there is to know at once there is still a way to go. After deciding to start training, you have to start with the basics. We offer the New Zealand Certificate in Salon Support (Level 3), which covers the very foundations of a lifelong career in hairdressing.

Our 34-week Salon Support course content includes hairdressing theory, current and past fashion trends and product knowledge. This programme also covers colouring and highlighting, long hair styling, shampooing, blow waving, as well as health and safety, salon systems and client care. Our point of difference is the 4-week module dedicated to scissor cutting during the first 12 weeks, enabling your cutting skills to progress for the programme’s duration.

The Level 3 qualification is both a stepping stone into hairdressing and a taste of what’s to come. You can then prepare for the next hairdressing programme available or broaden your skillset by delving into barbering or makeup. In addition to our hairdressing programmes, we offer the NZ Certificate in Barber Skills (Level 3), the NZ Certificate in Makeup and Skincare (Level 3) and the NZ Certificate in Makeup Artistry (Level 4) which can be completed later on, if you want to have a broader skillset.

Part of your learning will include partaking in a variety of work experiences. Each year we are involved with New Zealand Fashion Week as the directors for the coveted Resene Designer Runway Show. Other opportunities include photoshoots, music videos, charity events and live performances. Here you’ll be able to build your portfolio, network and get a taster for different work environments.

Long hair braid at NZFW2019
Behind the scenes at NZFW


Begin the Emerging Stylist (Level 4) programme

Upon completion of the Salon Support certificate (whether that be at Servilles Academy or another provider), you may find yourself chomping at the bit to move onto the next stage. Why stop at Level 3? Our Level 4 Emerging Stylist course is for students who have previously completed Salon Support and are ready develop their skills further.

In this 34-week programme (running Tuesday to Friday) students will learn about consultations, advanced cutting techniques, wet and dry styling, hair for fashion and editorial and advanced chemical services. You’ll have the chance to get creative with a variety of cuts and colours, plus learn about salon operations, such as Salon Performance Indicators.

In addition to in-class learning and external events, during your training you’ll get to partake in our Workbase programme. This enables students to work within salons across Auckland to really immerse themselves in the salon life, furthering preparing for employment in the hairdressing industry.


Start your career as a qualified hairstylist!

The hard work is done and now it’s time to turn your training and passion into a career! An amazing CV paired with a portfolio of your work and certifications from Servilles Academy mean you’ll stand out from the crowd. You now have the chance to join a salon team you love and trust, venture out on your own or explore the different areas where you can put your abilities to use. The world is your oyster! To find out about the different career pathways hairdressing can take you, have a read of our Boss blogs, where we catch up with successful academy alumni!