How to Become a Cosmetologist in Montana

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How to Become a Cosmetologist in Montana

In recent years, beauty has become so important that no matter whether they live in developed cities or small towns throughout the country, people are trying so hard to reach the looks and trends set by celebrities.

Consequently, the cosmetology field flourishes and will grow even more in the years to come.

The way we look at each other has changed, and we tend to judge people according to their physical appearance rather than their character, which highly influenced the cosmetology.

Leaving a good first impression and being attractive at first sight is of great importance to younger generations nowadays.

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Job Description

Cosmetologists in Montana are overwhelmed with work and they are eager to reach their client’s satisfaction.

By mastering different hairstyles, being acquainted with the latest trends to advise the client what he/she should do with his/her hair or nails, and being able to make the client’s wish come true makes a good cosmetologist.

The daily tasks and duties involve the usage of different equipment, like scissors, razors, hair blowers, and straighteners so they need to work skillfully and carefully with them.

Cosmetologists can be licensed to give manicures and pedicures, or massages and they need to maintain clean and sanitized working premises and equipment so as not to cause infection.

Cosmetology Programs in Montana

To fulfill the legal education requirements in Montana, you will have to get the education proscribed by the Montana Board of Barbers and Cosmetologists.

This kind of education is offered through various accredited programs in vocational schools and colleges, and some of the most popular ones are:

  • The Academy of Cosmetology, Inc – Bozeman
  • Bitterroot School of Cosmetology – Hamilton
  • Bold Beauty Academy – Billings
  • Butte Academy of Beauty Culture – Butte.

All of these schools have programs that include 2000 hours of training before taking the licensing exam, consisting of both classroom education and practice on mannequins or real people.

There are different numbers of hours necessary for different specialties and the Board determines the following number of hours of training in each subject:

  • Manicuring – 125 hours
  • Esthetics – 150 hours
  • Shampoo and scalp treatment – 260 hours
  • Chemical services – 530 hours
  • Haircutting – 205 hours
  • Salon management – 150 hours
  • Chemistry, sanitation, sterilization, safety, anatomy, physiology, infection control and disorders of nails, skin, scalp, and hair – 80 hours
  • The remaining 500 hours are left to the discretion of each cosmetology school

It is a great thing that approved cosmetology schools can be found throughout the state of Montana in the following cities:

  • Kalispell
  • Butte
  • Billings
  • Hamilton
  • Bozeman
  • Whitefish
  • Great Falls
  • Miles City
  • Missoula

Cosmetology Exams in Montana

Once you have passed the educational part of becoming a cosmetologist in Montana, you will need to sit and pass the Board-approved cosmetology exam to prove your skills and knowledge gained at the school.

The National Interstate Council of State Boards of Cosmetology, Inc. is in charge of the examination which consists of a written and practical exam.

The written exam is done on the computer and before scheduling it, you must submit the Application for Licensure by Examination.

The application is sent to the Board together with the following documentation:

  • The fee of $80
  • Verification from your school that you have completed the required cosmetology training
  • Copy of your high school diploma or transcripts
  • Proof of age

The address where the documentation should be sent is:

Montana Board of Barbers and Cosmetologists,

P.O. Box 200513, 301 S Park, 4th Floor (Delivery),

Helena, MT 59620-0513.

The Board will review your application and send you an admission letter to schedule the written exam.

The Written Exam is scheduled online by visiting PSI Exam Centers.

The exam fee is $50 and can be paid online at the time of scheduling.

The cities where you can be tested in Montana include:

  • Helena
  • Hamilton
  • Great Falls
  • Billings
  • Missoula
  • Kalispell

You are given 90 minutes for the exam that has questions related to scientific concepts, hair care, skin care, nail care, and services

You are considered successful if you reach 75% and only then you can take the practical exam.

The computerized version allows you to have the results immediately after the exam, but for the written version results you will have to wait for 7 to 10 business days.

The practical exam is the NIC Practical Exam, administered through DL Roope Administrations Inc.

The exam fee is $119 that can be paid online at the time of scheduling.

You must bring your equipment, supplies, mannequin hand, and mannequin head and be ready to spend four hours testing.

Skills that are tested should show how successful cosmetologist you are and they include:

  • 10 minutes – Set up and client protection
  • 10 minutes- Thermal curling
  • 30 minutes – Haircutting
  • 20 minutes – Chemical waving
  • 20 minutes – Virgin hair lightening application and hair color retouch
  • 20 minutes – Virgin hair relaxer application and relaxer retouch
  • 10 minutes – Basic facial
  • 20 minutes – Manicure

Again, the passing is allowed only to those who reach 75 %.

If you have passed both exams, the Board will mail you your Montana cosmetology license.

Keeping Your License Current 

Once achieved, the license does not last forever.

It has to be renewed biennially, as it expires on March 1 every other year.

You will be supposed to pay $80 and renew it online through the Board’s website, by providing proof of age.

No further education is required.

Average Annual Cosmetologist Salary and Job Prospects in Montana

A licensed cosmetologist can decide whether to start his/her own business or look for a job in an already established salon or spa.

To gain experience and get into the details related to the functioning of the salon, it is advisable to start with working for somebody else.

Some great and prominent salons of Montana where job opportunities are offered are:

  • Dillards Salons and Spas – Billings and Missoula
  • ULTA Salon, Cosmetics and Fragrance, Inc. – Bozeman
  • Great Clips – Great Falls and Helena
  • JC Penney- Billings
  • Regis Corporation – Missoula
  • Smart Style – Laurel

As the number of cosmetology jobs grows it is expected that the pay rate in Montana will increase, too.

The exact amount of money earned cannot be fully determined as cosmetologists due to the tips that they get when the clients are satisfied with their work.

The salary ranges from $ 21 568 in Butte to $ 24 991 in Billings.

Annual Salary Range:
$21K
$22K
$24K
10%
50%
90%
Annual Salary by Location:
LocationAvg. Annual Salary
Billings,MT$24,991
Bozeman,MT$21,568
Butte,MT$21,568
Great Falls,MT$22,625
Helena,MT$21,959
Kalispell,MT$23,160
Missoula,MT$21,568

USA Cosmetology by State


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