Beauty Schooled.

American consumers spent over $200 billion on beauty products and services in 2009 — an awful lot of lipsticks and manicures — yet the average salon worker earned just $9 to $15 per hour. But these numbers don’t tell us the human costs. Like, what happens when these products aren’t subjected to pre-market safety testing. And how a 13-year-old feels when her mom takes her for a bikini wax. Or why many of us would rather not make eye contact with the woman we’re paying to scrub our feet.

I spent 600 hours learning to excavate pores, apply makeup and wax, well, you know where, with the hope of finding some answers. Want to read the full story from start to finish? Click the Beauty U tab, above. Then check out Tip Jar for a behind-the-scenes look at me working on clients.


A writer, beauty school graduate and iVillage Body Image Expert. I sort of love leg waxing and I (almost) never brush my hair. Except for that photo up there. You know how it goes.

You can learn more things about me here.

Say hi.

I love email at beautyschooledproject [at] gmail [dot] com. Plus Facebook. And, Twitter.


The names and identifying details of other Beauty U folk have been changed unless otherwise noted.

Beauty Schooled does not endorse, enjoy, or earn any money from any advertisements you may see below posts. (They’re just a necessary evil that comes along with using WordPress for free.)

[Photo by Jason Falchook.]

33 responses to “About

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  31. LT

    Hey Virginia,

    This Beauty Schooled blog is FANTASTIC. I finished my Esthetics program in 2009. Reading through your blog articles brings back so, so many memories. You and I might as well be psychic twins…I swear I had the exact same thoughts, experiences, and even conversations that you had while in school. Even the teachers seem the same! Crazy! Anyhow, it’s been really great reading all you’ve written about going through an Esthetics program and learning about the work being done in the beauty industry. I could go on and on forever about my own experiences (a year of school and almost three years working in spas now…and I’ve still never had a bikini wax!), but this note is just to say THANK YOU and job well done!!!

    • Hi LT,

      Thank you so much! I’m thrilled to hear you like the Beauty Schooled project. Thanks so much, too, for sharing your experiences re: tipping. It’s so important to get these stories and information out there.

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