Beauty Salon Job Interview Questions

Beautician at work applying make up.
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When you're interviewing for a job in a beauty salon, it's important to take the time to prepare to answer the interview questions you will most often be asked. 

To be prepared to respond, review a list of frequently asked interview questions for beauticians. It can also be helpful to take a look at the skills employers seek in this industry, and think through how you'd highlight these in-demand skills in your responses.

What the Interviewer Wants to Know 

You can expect to get questions in a few major areas: 

  • Training and experience: Interviewers will want to know where you studied to become a beautician. They may also ask about apprenticeships. You'll be asked about roles you've previously held at salons. Interviewers may ask if you have loyal customers who may follow you if you accept the role. 
  • Skills: Expect a lot of questions about your particular skills, whether your area of expertise is cutting hair or giving manicures. 
  • Personality and work habits: Interviewers will want to know how you interact with clients. Repeat business is important for salons, so they'll look for candidates who create a warm, welcoming atmosphere and can diffuse problems and ill-tempered clients. 
  • Knowledge of beauty trends: Styles change from year to year—or far more rapidly than that. Interviewers will be looking for candidates who know which styles are current and which are dated, and also have a sense of how to stay up to date on the latest trends. 
  • Why you're applying: Interviewers will want to know why you want the job, and why you're interested in this particular salon. Turnover can be frequent, and interviewers will be interested in employees who stick around. 

The better prepared you are, the easier it will be to make a great impression, answer questions with confidence, and ace the interview.

Beautician Interview Questions

  • What do you like and dislike about being a beautician?
  • What subjects were your favorites in beauty school?
  • What subjects didn’t you like?
  • Why are you interested in working at this salon?
  • What attributes or skills can you offer this salon?
  • Do you have a following of clients?
  • What are some newly introduced techniques and trends in manicures, pedicures, and skincare?
  • How do you keep up with the latest styles and trends?
  • How do you suggest treatments, cosmetics, and skin therapies to your clients?
  • How do you greet a client if the salon is fully booked?
  • How do you decide priorities when scheduling time?
  • Do you think you are overqualified for this position?
  • What type of work environment do you prefer?
  • Who has impacted you most in your career, and how?
  • Have you ever had difficulty working with a manager?
  • How do you handle conflict amongst co-workers?
  • What would your salon colleagues say about you?
  • How do you handle an unhappy customer?
  • How do you react to instructions from the customer?
  • When given an important assignment, how do you approach it?
  • How do you deal with compromise?
  • What was the most important task you’ve ever had?
  • How do you react under pressure?
  • If you were hired, how long would you plan to stay at our salon?

Tips for Acing Your Interview 

During interviews, as you can see from the questions above, your interviewer will be interested in learning about your technical skills as a beautician. Interviewers will also ask questions to reveal your soft skills, particularly your ability to get along with co-workers (interpersonal skills) and your problem-solving skills. Here are some tips for doing well at your beautician interview: 

Research the Salon

Spend some time on the salon's website. Check out online reviews and scan the salon's social media accounts. Be aware of what customers like–and do not like–about the salon, as well as the services the salon offers. Look for services the salon doesn't currently offer that you might be able to provide. Use this research to help you prepare questions to ask during the interview. 

Presentation Matters

This is one interview where appearance counts. Interviewers may evaluate your hair, nails, makeup, and how you carry yourself during your conversation. Keep your grooming polished and professional, and make sure to dress appropriately as well. 

If you can, try peeking in the salon window in advance of your interview. This can give you a sense of what type of outfit will be appropriate. A salon that caters to mature women may have different attire than a spot that has college students as clientele. 

Be Prepared With Stories

During the interview, you may be asked questions about how you deal with challenging customers, co-worker conflicts, time management issues, and so much more. Take a look at the skills listed above, and think of stories that show off your abilities in these areas. 

Arrive on Time

Time management is a key skill for beauticians, who can have a fully scheduled day. Show up to the interview a few minutes before the scheduled start time. Turn your phone off (or set it to be silent) so that you do not get distracted during the interview. 

Stay Positive

Avoid being negative about former co-workers and salons. Stay positive and avoid insults and complaints. You never know how people are connected, so it's best to keep it professional and avoid gossip. 

Beautician Skills to Showcase

Here's a list of beautician skills that employers seek in candidates for employment. But keep in mind that in-demand skills will change depending on the particular role at the salon. 

  • Appointment Scheduling
  • Attending Classes
  • Communication
  • Conditioning Hair
  • Cosmetics Consulting
  • Creativity
  • Eyebrows
  • Facials
  • Friendly
  • Giving Body Waves
  • Giving Brazilian Blowouts
  • Giving Permanents
  • Hair Coloring
  • Hair Cutting
  • Hair Design
  • Hair Highlighting
  • Hair Lightening
  • Hair Styling
  • Interpersonal
  • Keratin Treatments
  • Makeup
  • Management
  • Manicures
  • Monetary Exchange
  • Nail Services
  • Networking
  • Ordering Supplies
  • Pedicures
  • Recordkeeping
  • Sales
  • Scalp Treatment
  • Scheduling
  • Service
  • Shampooing Hair
  • Skin Care
  • Styling
  • Time Management
  • Updated Knowledge of Products
  • Updated Knowledge of Styles
  • Waxing

Key Takeaways

BE PREPARED. By practicing responses, you'll be able to answer questions confidently. 

DRESS FOR THE ROLE. Appearances matter for beauticians, since few customers will want to get a service from someone who is not well groomed. 

STAY POSITIVE. Your interviewer may be friends (or acquaintances) with people at your former salons, so avoid gossip and negativity in your responses.