As you look through possible careers in the Florida health and beauty industry, or search for the license of a Florida beauty professional, you may see a unique term, a “full specialist” on cosmetology school and salon websites. What is exactly is a full specialist?
A nail specialist and a facial specialist are both pretty self-explanatory. In Florida, nail techs are registered by the state as “nail specialists”. A nail specialist is someone who does manicures and pedicures. And what most other states call estheticians, are registered by the Board of Cosmetology in Florida as facial specialists. A facial specialist is someone who is licensed to perform skincare services, such as facials and makeup.
The Board of Cosmetology also registers Full Specialists. This is someone who is trained and registered to offer the services of both a nail and facial specialist. They can do manicures, pedicures, facials, and many other skincare services. If you have more questions about this career, including renewal courses and licensing questions for out of state estheticians and nail techs, I promise to cover all of that below.
How to find a full specialist training program?
Are you interested in doing facials and doing nails? If so, a full specialist license might be something to look closer at.
Full specialist programs are typically completed and a cosmetology school. If you are interested in becoming a full specialist, contact a Florida cosmetology school. Recently, Florida reduced (link) the number of hours required for a full specialist license. A full specialist program can be completed in as little as 400 to 500 hours. Facial and nail specialists trainings are each around 200 hours. That means within four to six months you can have a new career in the beauty industry.
Where do specialists work?
Like most other cosmetology professionals, full specialists work in licensed salons or at the client’s chosen location. Being licensed or registered to do facial, skincare, and nail services open up wide possibilities of careers and unique opportunities. It also breaks up the monotony of doing one job all day long.
I have talked to many full specialists about their job. When I ask them why they chose this career, or their favorite thing about it, time and time again, I’ve been told they love the variety. The variety of services they can offer made it worth the extra time spent in school.
You can open up your own big or little salon. Maybe you dream of a trendy nail or brow bar. You could also focus on wedding parties, doing just makeup and nails for brides and their wedding parties. There are many exciting possibilities.
Again, here are just a few services a full specialist may offer:
- Eyebrow services
You can also add on other licenses or services, like tattoo artist (eyebrow microblading), electrolysis tech (hair removal), or massage therapist. You can also choose the route of just becoming a nail specialist or facial specialist.
How do you know if someone is a licensed full specialist?
If their license number starts with an FV, they are a nail specialist. If their license number starts with an FB, they are a facial specialist. And, if their license number starts with an FS, they are a full specialist. You can check to see if a license is active/valid right here, DBPR license verification.
How much can a specialist make?
Since it is such a unique qualification, it is difficult to pinpoint. What we do know is that nail specialists make around $25,000 a year and facial specialists make around $32,000 a year. Income for a full specialist should be in that ballpark. It is unclear if tips are included in either of these figures either. These figures are the averages. There are professionals that make more and less than these figures.
What are the continuing education requirements for full specialist
In 2020, the continuing education requirement to renew a full specialist license was reduced from 16 hours to 10 hours. You can find our 10-hour board-approved renewal course for cosmetologists and all specialists here, 10-hour Florida Cosmetology Continuing Education Course.
I am a licensed nail tech and esthetician in another state. How do I get licensed as a full specialist in Florida?
If you are dual-licensed as a nail tech and esthetician in another state and plan to move to Florida, you can use both your active licenses to apply for a full specialist by endorsement. You will need to complete a cosmetology board-approved 4-hour HIV/AIDS course.
Still have questions about any of the above, let me know below and I will respond as soon as possible. Or share your career plans or experience as a specialist. I love to hear what people are doing in Florida with their careers.