Becoming a Lash Pilot eyelash artist takes more than simply opening up shop. Our work is governed by both the California Board of Barbering and Cosmetology, and by our own exacting standards. So let’s explore the differences between licensed vs. certified lash techs, and what it takes to become a Lash Pilot Artist.
Licensing Regulations for Eyelash Extension Artists
First let’s talk about licensing. In the state of California, where Lash Pilot is headquartered, eyelash extensions can only be administered by a licensed cosmetologist or esthetician. An esthetician is somebody who specializes in skin treatments. They can perform facials and other treatments based on a client’s skin type and needs. A cosmetologist can provide a wider range of beauty treatments, including working with hair and nails as well as skin.
The majority of people who go into the eyelash extension business are cosmetologists. In order to qualify as a cosmetologist in California, applicants must undergo extensive training. This includes completing 1600 hours at an accredited beauty school (or 3200 hours as an apprentice), plus 220 hours of related training. At the end of this training, successful students usually receive a certificate, diploma, or associate’s degree.
After learning all about cosmetology, new practitioners must sit a licensing exam. Without passing the exam, they’re still not authorized to perform cosmetology services in California. The exam is set by the California Board of Barbering and Cosmetology and includes both written and practical components. Only after successfully passing the exam do applicants receive their California cosmetology license, which must be renewed every two years.
At this point, they are a licensed, vs. certified lash tech.
The Difference Between Licensed vs. Certified Lash Techs
Getting licensed as a cosmetologist in California is a long process, and ensures that anybody practicing cosmetology is highly trained. Cosmetology school covers the basics of the most common treatments available. This includes hair coloring and highlighting, facials, hair removal, and nail treatments.
Cosmetology school also teaches students about health, safety, and sanitation processes. This is extremely important because allergic reactions to ingredients in dyes and adhesives are very common. Learning what adverse reactions are possible, and how to reduce the risks of a client experiencing a negative reaction, are some of the most important skills of cosmetology.
While cosmetology training and licensing in California is very thorough, it can’t teach everything. Instead, it gives a broad overview of the main skills and lessons that practicing cosmetologists need to know. Many cosmetologists choose a narrow discipline after graduation, such as applying eyelash extensions, and become experts in that particular field.
This is where certification comes in. While a cosmetologist may be licensed to perform a cosmetic service, they aren’t necessarily highly trained in that specific skill. Becoming certified means they’ve undergone additional training in their field, and have a deeper knowledge and understanding of how to perform the services they offer. That’s the difference between being a licensed vs. certified lash tech.
Lash Pilot Eyelash Extension Training and Certification
At Lash Pilot, we educate eyelash extension technicians at our Training Academy. There, licensed estheticians and cosmetologists who want to work in an eyelash extension studio — or brush up on their knowledge and learn the latest eyelash extension skills — can benefit from our years of experience providing high-quality eyelash extensions.
Just like the state licensing exam, our training has both a theory and practical component. Our students learn the fundamentals about eyelash extensions, including learning about the anatomy of the eye and the growth cycle of natural lashes. Then we educate learners about the products, including mink, silk, and synthetic eyelash extensions. Students discover the differences between each type of extension material, the different looks they can achieve, and the correct methods for applying each one.
We also take safety and sanitation seriously. Eyelash extensions are generally safe, but some clients can experience allergic reactions to certain adhesives. We teach future technicians how to screen clients for possible allergies, and what precautions to take to minimize risk. Finally, students learn how to correctly sanitize their equipment and workstation.
At Lash Pilot, we don’t think clients should have to choose between licensed vs. certified lash techs. Instead, we believe the extra training we offer to certify lash artists is important for delivering the right results.
Licensed vs. Certified Lash Techs — The Customer Service Difference
Although licensed cosmetologists are highly trained individuals who have a wide skill set of different beauty treatments, they might not be very experienced in providing a specific service such as applying eyelash extensions.
Certified technicians have undergone additional training in their particular niche, and have a broader and deeper understanding of the theory and techniques necessary to get the best results. The difference between licensed vs. certified lash techs can mean the difference between gorgeous-looking lashes and a style that doesn’t meet expectations.
Clients want to achieve the latest fashions and best possible results when they have an eyelash extension treatment. That means choosing a salon where the lash artists are licensed and have the right eyelash certification.
Lash Pilot Goes the Extra Mile
By training and certifying lash artists in-house, we can be confident in the skills of our technicians. We know they’ve trained under experienced cosmetologists and eyelash extension experts, and that their training covers everything they need to know to create the looks our clients want. It’s just one more way that we protect and elevate the Lash Pilot brand.
At the end of training, successful students receive a Lash Pilot eyelash extension certificate and earn the ability to call themselves Lash Pilot Artists. Whether graduating students go on to work for Lash Pilot or set up their own salons, they’re certified in the correct application of eyelash extensions and can demonstrate to their clients that they’ve gone above and beyond to learn the skills of their trade.
The Lash Pilot Training Opportunity
If you’re interested in training with a lash extension salon that understands the difference between licensed vs. certified lash techs, then a Lash Pilot Academy class could be right for you. Contact us today to learn more about the courses and learn how to take the next step toward joining our Academy.