VG Careers: Beyond The Makeup Counter 2

We spoke to one of Proctor & Gamble’s beauty Scientists, Lush’s media relations expert and the brand manager for Herbal Essences to get the scoop on what they think is important in beauty. By Aparna Allam

Education: Qualifications in this industry are as varied as the positions available.

Teca (P&G): I have a BA in chemistry. Analytical chemistry is what I really connect with. I’ve also started working on my MBA.

Jen (Lush): My background is in communications – I have a BA in communications with a minor in psychology.

Sarah (Herbal Essences)
: I started out with a literature degree and then went on to do my MBA. I also sang, painted and worked as a freelance writer.

The Right Fit: Look for roles that echo your interests – the more you know about your likes and dislikes, the easier it will be to identify your career path.

Jen: You have to fit what you do in your job – tailor your interests to your career goals.   

Teca:  There are a lot of preconceived notions about what a scientist should be like. I’m not dorky or introverted – I think it’s important for girls to know that you can be yourself and still be a great scientist. Communication skills are important, according to Teca. “Whether you are curing cancer or creating shampoo, you need to be able to communicate your results. You also have to be willing to take risks and develop a skill for keeping up with trends.

: You absolutely need to have confidence in your own judgment.

One question had these ladies giving us identical answers. What’s the easiest way into the beauty industry? INTERNSHIPS.

Start as early as possible – internships will give you the opportunity to try a job or company on for size. Do your research – call up Cake or Cargo and request an informational interview. Network – talk to your professors and career counselors. As Jen says, “Once you have your foot in the door, this industry becomes a very small place.”

*P&G and L’Oréal both offer internships.

Check out for more information on programs and scholarships that are right for you.

Expert Advice
·  Intern! Intern! Intern!
·  You don’t need to be a science major to make it in cosmetics.
·  Be true to who you are and what you love – success will follow.
·  Think outside the box! Institutions like the CIA offer co-ops for students in make-up and special effects programs.
Salary Ranges
·  Cosmetic Chemist: $60k to $80k
·  PR/Media Specialist: $45k to $65K
·  Beauty Brand Manager: $55k to $70k
Industry Facts
P & G has been recognized as one of the Top 10 Companies for Executive Women.
P & G is ranked #2 among ‘Top Companies for Leaders.

Cargo’s innovative Plant Love lipstick comes in packaging infused with wildflower seeds that you can plant!

L’Oréal was voted among 2009’s Most Attractive Employers Worldwide.

The Canadian beauty industry brings in over $9 billion every year.