“I finished my GCSEs last year. I always tried really hard at school but it wasn’t for me, as I am a visual learner and find it hard to study from books; written exams were always a challenge. I am far happier now that I am completing my hairdressing apprenticeship as the hands-on style of learning suits me. I observe and learn from the stylists as they work on clients and get involved in a variety of tasks on a daily basis. This means that the information lodges in my mind.”
Lilly Rule is currently completing her Level 2 Hairdressing Apprenticeship at Envy in Plymouth. “I was interested in the more creative subjects at school, such as art and design. Hairdressing, beauty and nail art have always appealed to me as they allow me to explore my artistic side. I’ve already completed a nail course and now am progressing with hairdressing – I would eventually like to offer a complete hair and beauty service. My goal is to move onto my Level 3 Hairdressing qualification and in the future perhaps work on cruise ships offering hair and beauty services, as I love to travel.
“No two days are the same at the salon; I am involved with a wide variety of tasks from blow drying and washing customers’ hair to readying the salon for clients. It is rewarding to make people feel good about themselves. My favourite task is preparing hair extensions. You have to take them out, peel the oil off, wash and dry them and then re-tape them – it’s very fiddly but I find it therapeutic!
“I am hugely enjoying my apprenticeship. The salary is another benefit too. I am saving up for a ‘Help To Buy’ Scheme as I would like to get onto the property ladder as soon as possible.
“My advice to anyone thinking about doing an apprenticeship would be to choose something because you have an interest in it, and not just because your friends are doing it. You do not need to follow the pack. A good starting point for choosing a career is to think about your hobbies and then just go from there”.
I always struggled in school as I wasn’t very academic, so knew learning on the job would be a better option for me. I would find it difficult to get up for 9am but now I wake up and look forward to my day. I wanted to try a hair apprenticeship as I’ve always been interested in hairdressing, and by the end of the first week, I already loved it!
I have developed a range of new skills through work including the technical, industry skills required for the job, to personal development such as ensuring I am always on time. The biggest change since leaving school is adjusting to the independence you gain from earning a salary. My advice to anyone thinking of doing an apprenticeship would be find what you like doing, and go for it!
Since starting the apprenticeship, I’ve become far more confident. In a classroom, you only interact with your classmates, but through working you develop your people skills as you interact with customers on a daily basis. At school, you are closely monitored and parented, however I am now more independent and feel grown up
The most important thing I’ve learnt since leaving school is that there are other routes to success than just academia. I failed my GCSEs, as I never suited the school environment. Now though, I’m really enjoying my apprenticeship as I’ve discovered I learn more through hands-on practice.
I would just like to thank you and your team for all the amazing work they do, you have provided me with the most invaluable experience which has helped to pave the way of my future. The work you do for young people is incredible!