Beauty is a multi-billion dollar industry in the United States. The hair care market alone is predicted to be worth than $13 billion in the next three years.
Black hair care is one of the driving forces in the market.
Veteran stylist and hair extension specialist Theresa Mosley found it surprising that there are so few African-American owned cosmetology schools in West Michigan.
"Yes. especially in the Grand Rapids area. We are the second largest city. You would think we'd already have that here," she said.
Well, we do now.
This week, Mosley opened the Mosley School of Cosmetology. The school is located in Kentwood, near the corner of Breton Road SE and 44th Street SE.
Mosley says starting the school has been a growing passion for some years. "Students are having a hard time finding schools with instructors who can teach them about textured hair," she said. "I decided to open because I saw there was a strong desire from students who want to know more about textured hair. They wanted to have instructors who were experienced and actually worked with textured hair in a salon. So, I wanted to give that to the community.
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"When I went to cosmetology school, I did a lot of silky hair. So, when I entered into the field I had to actually go get additional education to learn how to do textured hair so I could be great at that," she continued. "A lot of students get discouraged. Sometimes, instead of people going to get that additional training, they go back to work at the factory or wherever they were working before."
Tuesday, April 11, the school will begin bringing students in for open enrollment.
Mosley says she hopes to graduate stylists that will be considered the best in their field and who can excel in all aspects of cosmetology.
"Cosmetology does not just cover hair. But, it includes skin care, nails, makeup," said Mosley. "That thought that hair is for dropouts or people who can't make it in college, no. That's not true in today's world. Not only do I have my cosmetology and instructor license, I have a bachelors degree. There are a lot of people who went to a four-year college. They spent tons of money on school and cannot get a job.
"In the hair industry, I'm basically able to make a six-figure income."
Mosley's students will have to complete hundreds of hours of classroom instruction and then additional hours working on the public.
They have to do 300 hours in the classroom before working on clients. So, they will have a lot of time on mannequins and they will learn all sanitation and everything they need to know before they touch the public.
"But, our goal is that the students here are going to be great," said Mosley.
For more information, visit the Mosley School of Cosmetology Facebook page.
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