21+ Top Esthetician Schools In California To Get Into 2023

Top Esthetician Schools In California: Estheticians in California make so much that most students do not mind how long the school will take or how much it will cost them to become a medical or master esthetician in the state.

It’s interesting to know that being an Esthetician is a rewarding career in this dispensation.

Having to cater to the skin well-being of clients and make them feel and look beautiful at all times without patches or scars is fulfilling.


Today aesthetics is regarded even in California.

Each day, the average American woman has at least 17 different shades of makeup and beauty crafts on before leaving the house.

This is so because looking beautiful is a criterion for societal acceptance. 

This singular reason is one that makes Estheticians highly in demand for individual and corporate use such as in entertainment and movie production.

However, before you start out on that path, you will need to train professionals to develop skills that are worthy to be licensed as a professional Esthetician.

In that regard, it is necessary to enroll in an accredited trade school, college, or university that has an esthetician program tailored to fit today’s industrial need for beauty.

It’s great news that California houses some of the best esthetician schools that will train you to become a Medical or nonmedical esthetician even up to a master’s level.


Here in this guide, we bring you details on how to journey the path and become an esthetician.

To guide you effectively, we have ensured you know how much an esthetician school in California will cost as well as how long it will take.

Also, we have set you up to make an informed decision about working in the state by revealing to you how much estheticians make in California.

Welcome Aboard Scholar!!!

What Does An Esthetician Do?

People who often ask the above question do so when they confuse an esthetician with a dermatologist or cosmetologist.

But our article on Esthetician Vs Cosmetology will help you clear those doubts.

Officially, an esthetician is one who provides professional skin care services for their clients for the purpose of beautification.

Most of these services cut across;

  • Body waxing
  • Facial massage.
  • Makeup artistry.
  • Facial and skin treatments
  • Skincare recommendations to clients
  • Treatment of skin diseases: acne and eczema.
  • Microdermabrasion – removal of dead epidermal cells.

If you take your studies up a notch by attending the medical esthetician schools, you can identify, treat and take care of people’s skin even at a medical level in California.

In the end, the sole focus of an esthetician is to improve the patient’s or client’s skin condition. 

ALSO READ: 21+ Best Esthetician Schools Online To Get Into 2022

What Path Can An Esthetician Take?

Majorly, the path of an esthetician determines the area of specialization or job responsibility. 

Your job responsibility will determine what courses and programs you will take in an esthetician school to gain a professional certificate in California.

Now here are the 6 basic types of esthetician specialties:

  • Makeup Artist.
  • Master Esthetician.
  • Clinical Esthetician.
  • Medical Spa Manager.
  • Wax/Hair Remover Specialist.
  • Esthetician Skin Care Specialist.
  • Medical/Paramedical Esthetician.

Do I have to attend different schools for different Esthetician specialties?

Absolutely not, although the medical and master estheticians will require some extra training in higher-level Esthetician schools in California.

Who is a medical esthetician and what kind of schools do they attend in California?

Okay like we have pointed out, a career path as a medical esthetician will require you to take additional courses sometimes in a different school and other times in the same school.

When it’s at a medical level, an esthetician is referred to as a medical esthetician.

Medical or paramedical estheticians are estheticians who care for the client’s skin in different settings.

Rather than spas and beauty parlors, medical estheticians find jobs in dermatological medical settings or work with plastic surgeons.

Other job responsibilities include pre-and post-operative care. 

For example, educating patients on how to take care of their skin.

To be able to do that, you need to enroll in any of the medical esthetician schools in California.

Who is A Master Esthetician?

A master esthetician is a skin care specialist who has completed several hundred additional training hours in a variety of topics related to esthetics more than the basics.

For one to be called a master esthetician, he /she must have been an advanced skin care professional. 

Such professional titles come with a license requirement that validates the bearer on an account of an expanded level of study and hands-on training in advanced areas of esthetics.

Although master estheticians are not medical professionals, they may work alongside health care professionals to provide services such as 

  • Aging skin
  • Advanced peels
  • Tattoo removal
  • Chemical peels
  • Eyelash extensions 
  • Laser hair removal
  • Microdermabrasion
  • LED light therapy
  • Advanced case studies
  • Hyper-pigmented skin
  • Medical spa operations
  • Treatment after plastic surgery, and more. 

How Do I Become A Master Esthetician in California?

To become a master esthetician, you would complete the following steps:

  • Complete a Master Esthetician Program in any of the schools in California that offer such programs.
  • Apply for a Master Esthetician License and Schedule the Required Examinations. 
  • Take and Pass the Required Master Esthetician State Exams.
  • Get your California master esthetician license.

While this advanced license has many benefits it is not offered in every state.

Only states such as Washington, Oregon, Utah, Virginia, and D.C., offer master esthetician licenses. 

In other words, California may not be the best place to obtain a master esthetician license.

Are There Master Esthetician Schools In California?

Because California as a state does not offer a master esthetician license, they do not have schools that offer the program or what many call the advanced level of esthetics.

ALSO READ: 21+ Accredited Esthetician Schools New York to get into 2022

How Do I Become An Esthetician In California?

Becoming an esthetician in California is a straightforward journey.

All you have to do is to meet up with the following requirements;

  • Be at least 17 years old
  • Finished 10th grade or the equivalent.
  • Complete at least 600 hours in any of the California Estheticians schools you all find below.
  • Upon completion, apply for the Esthetician license. It costs $40.
  • Get ready for the exam. The fee is $75.
  • Pass the exam.
  • Not in violation of certain restrictions, such as;
    • Criminal convictions relevant to job duties within the past seven years
    • Serious felony convictions
    • Providing false information on your application
  • Renew your license bi-yearly. It will cost $50 to renew the license
  • Look for jobs and join the league of Estheticians in California state.

Keep in mind that in California, the board doesn’t accept hours clocked as an apprentice.

Are There Esthetician Schools in California?

Yes, there are a lot of beauty schools that will train you to become an esthetician in California.

In fact, that’s why you are here.

There are many schools for estheticians in California.

By design, Esthetic schools offer different courses and programs which lead students to acquire either a bachelor’s, master or certificate degree in esthetics. 

Some schools go on to offer medical esthetic programs to train people to become medical or master estheticians.

To help you find your fit, you will see a list of schools below that will help you.

Before you make a choice, find out how long an esthetician school in California will take as well as how much it will cost.

How Much Is an Esthetician School In California?

How much an esthetician school in California costs will depend on the individual school. 

Each school has its own individual beauty school tuition which is in great contrast to another.

We have specified individual tuition costs per school below.

But on average, the top California esthetics program tuition cost is $7,993. 

We also know that the cost of an esthetician license is $70 and you will need a $177 apprenticeship application fee.

To know how much an esthetician school in California will cost you have to read below.

How Long Is Esthetician School In California?

The first big fear of becoming an esthetician is completing an esthetician program in an accredited school. 

This will take about 4-6 months for full-time students and 9 to 12 months for part-time students.

Some schools may have varying durations. 

ALSO READ: 21+ Approved Esthetician Schools In Utah To Get Into 2022

Top Esthetician Schools In California To Get Into

We have established the fact that California is home to the largest community of professional estheticians in the USA. 

Cities such as LA, Hollywood, or the Bay Area have openings for estheticians.

But first, you need to enroll in the top-rated esthetician schools in California.

If you’re living in LA, our article on The Best Esthetician Schools In Los Angeles will help streamline your search.

Here you will find our pick of the best esthetician schools and academies in California offering esthiology programs that meet Board requirements for licensure:

#1. Advance Beauty College 

  • Tuition: $6,427
  • Kit Cost: $282
  • Program Length: 4 months
  • Location: Garden Grove & Laguna Hills

At Advance Beauty College, students learn all the essential techniques of skin analysis and care.

As an extension, students also get involved in community development such as charity events and others to give back to the community. 

A good thing about studying at Advance Beauty College is that the school’s career assistance services usually help students find the right esthetician position upon graduation.

Even though the school’s tuition is low, Advance Beauty College still offers scholarship opportunities to students who qualify.

#2. Bellus Academy 

  • Tuition: $9,000
  • Kit Cost: $1,420
  • Program Length: 5 months
  • Location: Poway near San Diego

Studying at Bellus Academy offers you the opportunity to serve clients in a local hub of fashion and style.

Bellus has a well-lit studio space where students learn how to master the techniques of skin analysis and facial treatments. 

As an extension, for students involved in community services, some high school students at Bellus receive scholarships to enter the program. 

Also, Bellus Academy offers career services to help students find the perfect position when they graduate.

#3. Career Academy of Beauty 

  • Tuition: $10,770
  • Kit Cost: in tuition
  • Program Length: Varies
  • Location: Garden Grove

Career Academy of Beauty is regarded as one of the best esthetician schools in California because of its focus on practicals.

75% of the esthetician program at Career Academy of Beauty is focused on practicing techniques on real clients.

The remaining hours are focused on theory and business skills to succeed in an esthetics career.

Your classes will cover information about peels, masks, microdermabrasion, skin analysis, face mapping etc.

One reason you should study at Career Academy of Beauty is the small class sizes that foster personalized one-on-one learning. 

#4. Colleen O’Hara’s Beauty Academy

  • Tuition: $9,705
  • Kit Cost: $1,295
  • Program Length: 7 months
  • Location: Santa Ana, Orange County.

If you’re considering an esthetician school in California that will not take long to complete its program, you should not go to Colleen O’Hara’s Beauty Academy.

Colleen O’Hara’s Beauty Academy is one of the esthetician programs that take longer than the average in California.

Regardless of its long training hours, Colleen O’Hara’s Beauty Academy is a place where creative, artistic culture lives. 

In addition to theory, students gain hands-on experience by treating clients’ facials, peels, masks, microdermabrasion, makeup application, and other esthetic services. 

Among its goodness, Colleen O’Hara’s Beauty Academy offers advanced esthetician classes, which makes it one of the best schools for medical and master’s esthetics programs in California.

#5. Cosmo Beauty Academy 

  • Tuition: $5,500
  • Kit Cost: $2,208
  • Program Length: 7 months
  • Location: Sacramento

Cosmo Beauty Academy’s program is one of the most affordable esthetician programs in California. 

Students who enroll in the Cosmo Beauty Academy will not only learn but be involved in charity events which allows them to network.

The courses at Cosmo Beauty Academy cover skin analysis, neck & shoulder massage, glycolic treatments, personalized masks, etc.

You can be sure that at the end of your program you will be skilled in the art and science of esthetics and become one of the best esthetician professionals in California.

ALSO READ: 21+ Top Esthetician Schools In Michigan to get into 2022

#6. Institute of Beauty Culture 

  • Tuition: $6,500
  • Kit Cost: $1,406
  • Program Length: 600 hours
  • Location: Santa Maria

Institute of Beauty Culture offers comprehensive training and education.

Students learn through technical instructions and they have a lot of opportunities to practice what they’re learning. 

By the end of the program, students who enroll at the Institute of Beauty Culture Esthetician program will be able to master facial techniques, eyebrow shaping, hair removal, skin analysis, and how to apply makeup using the latest techniques. 

If you’re considering how long an esthetician school in California takes, you should really apply to the Institute of Beauty Culture due to the shortness of the course.

#7. International School of Beauty 

  • Tuition: $7,200
  • Kit Cost: $756
  • Program Length: 4 months
  • Location: Palm Desert

The International School of Beauty is one of the best esthetician schools in California because of its not-so-costly tuition rate.

The school’s curriculum expands beyond esthetic programs.

Courses at the International School of Beauty will include business training essential for independent estheticians.

The programs at the International School of Beauty prepare you to become a professional esthetician in California to the point of managing or owning a spa. 

Veterans at the International School of Beauty receive VA benefits.

#8. Palomar Institute of Cosmetology 

  • Tuition: $7,150
  • Kit Cost: $1,200
  • Program Length: 5 months
  • Location: San Marcos

Palomar Institute of Cosmetology teaches you to confidently treat your clients’ skin and give them the killer look.

Also, you will learn how to treat skin conditions, apply facials, apply makeup, perform hair removal, etc. 

Why Palomar Institute of Cosmetology is an attraction is because students get to practicalize theories using brands like OPI, Eufora, and Design Essentials. 

Once they complete their program, the Palomar Institute of Cosmetology will support them in finding a job through the career assistance services.

how much is esthetician school in California
how much is esthetician school in California

#9. Salon Success Academy 

  • Tuition: $8,104
  • Kit Cost: $2,550
  • Program Length: 6 months
  • Location: Corona, Fontana, Riverside, Upland, & Redlands

Salon Success Academy will teach you the art of skin care in addition to the art of effective customer service and business to help sustain long-term success in the industry. 

The school provides the opportunity for students to practice on real-life clients as they would during the board exams. 

The good news is that Salon Success Academy offers both day and evening schedules so students can find the best fit for them. 

#10. San Francisco Institute of Esthetics and Cosmetology

  • Tuition: $9,582
  • Kit Cost: $3,543
  • Program Length: 4 months
  • Location: San Francisco

The San Francisco Institute of Esthetics and Cosmetology offers day or evening classes for the esthetics program. 

Because San Francisco Institute of Esthetics and Cosmetology partners with Paul Mitchell The School, one of the Best Esthetician Schools in the USA, the school offers a standard program in California as an extension.

In other words, you can expect the same level of excellence as you would from Paul Mitchell The School.

Also, there are scholarship opportunities for students who need it.

How Much Do Estheticians Make In California?

It’s ideal to know how much Estheticians make in California especially if you want to practice in the state.

The Annual Salary Structure of Estheticians in California ranges between $21,500 and $47,480.

In many cases, how much Estheticians make in California is dependent on their region, local demand, and economic conditions. 

By state, we see that Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim’s average salary structure for Estheticians is between $21,500 and $47,760; San Francisco-San Mateo-Redwood City is between $22,310 and $71,600 as well as in other states.

The highest-paying metro areas for estheticians in California are:

  • Santa Maria-Santa Barbara: $52,750
  • Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura: $40,810
  • Santa Rosa: $38,610
  • Modesto: $37,210
  • San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara: $36,870

Where Can I Work As An Esthetician in California?

If you have a license as an esthetician you are allowed to practice in California in different settings.

As for skincare experts, estheticians have many potential venues for employment, including the entertainment industry, jobs at spas and resorts, and small business ownership

Licensed Estheticians can work in different industries such as;

  • Gyms
  • Salon
  • Hotels
  • Beauty spas
  • Cruise ships
  • Dermatology office.

Some Estheticians can work with Sports Medicine Doctors to keep the skin of athletes looking great as they keep fit.

It’s also open to estheticians to start up a business of their own in the beauty industry.

A Medical esthetician can work in hospitals with dermatologists or open a private practice with his license.

Typically, estheticians work in spas, resorts, luxury hotels, beauty salons, and waxing salons.

ALSO READ: 21+ Top Esthetician Schools in Chicago to get into 2022-2023

Frequently Asked Questions About Esthetician Schools In California

Who Accredits Esthetician Programs in California?

The California Board of Barbering and Cosmetology ensures all schools that want to offer esthetician programs are fit and equipped for such.

What’s the Job Outlook For Estheticians in California?

There is a predicted 17% job increase between 2016–2026 for estheticians in California. 

This is higher than the expected national growth of 11%.

How Do I Find Esthetician Training Programs Near Me?

The best way to find esthetician programs near you is to search.

Our guide on How To Find Esthetician Schools Near You will help you.

We believe this article has helped you make a choice of the best esthetician schools in California.

Before you enroll in any California school, find out how much the tuition for an esthetician program is and how long it will take.

Once you complete your program, you should apply for your license.

We also believe that you have a glimpse of how much estheticians make in California.

Remember, if you want to take the profession up a notch, you have to enroll in advanced studies in medical and master esthetician schools in California.

We wish you luck with your application.

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