How Do I Become a Salon Receptionist?

Elizabeth West

Many beauty salons hire personnel to handle the front desk, greet customers and book appointments. If you like working with the public and are interested in the industry, you can become a salon receptionist. You won't necessarily need cosmetology or aesthetic training, but you should have many of the same skills as other office support positions.

Many salon receptionists offer bottled water to clients.
Many salon receptionists offer bottled water to clients.

Most employers seeking a receptionist will post jobs either on aggregate employment websites, where a job seeker can search by geographic area, or sometimes on free listings. Employment offices are also a good place to start looking for local jobs. You will most likely find positions that require weekend work, since many salons are open on Saturday to accommodate clients who cannot schedule appointments during the work week.

A salon receptionist working.
A salon receptionist working.

Administrative assistant and office support job skills you already have transfer easily when you become a salon receptionist. Some of the things you can expect to do are answer phones, use a computer to book appointments and keep track of regular customers, and sort clients as they come in the door. Experience handling cash or credit cards is a plus, as is sales or retail experience, since you may be asked questions about products the salon has for sale. You are the first impression many clients have of the business, so your demeanor and personal grooming should be as professional as possible.

After you have successfully become a salon receptionist, your main duties will generally take place in the lobby or waiting area of the salon. You will distribute the mail, handle deliveries and may even order supplies for the business. Some salons provide amenities for customers such as hot or cool beverages, and you will be expected to maintain the coffee or tea stations and keep soft drinks and bottled water stocked.

Many salons perform very personal services for their clients, including hair removal, tanning and various other grooming tasks. Upscale salons, especially those that do waxing of intimate areas or include spa facilities, will have private areas for technicians and clients. Those aspiring to become a salon receptionist should be discreet when dealing with customers, as many of them won't want anyone to know what type of service they are receiving. Any experience you have handling confidential information is worth mentioning in your interview.

Chain and franchise salons sometimes require their front desk personnel to be enrolled in cosmetology courses. This gives applicants who are interested in the beauty field a chance to learn on the job. If you want to become a salon receptionist without these qualifications, you may have to look elsewhere. It pays to check, however, since a smaller establishment may only need someone with general customer service experience at the front desk.

Salon receptionist might book appointments for clients.
Salon receptionist might book appointments for clients.

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