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Careers in fashion beyond modeling – we get you the cool new jobs for working women in India interested in fashion and beauty.
By Nisha Salim
Sukanya Nair*, 32, works in a BPO, in a 2:00 – 10:00 shift. Though she has been promoted within the organization and has more job responsibilities now, she still feels that her creativity is not being fully utilized. Sukanya takes pride in her well-groomed appearance and considers her sense of style as one of her major strengths. She also often helps her friends and colleagues shop for clothes, and advises them on how to be well-groomed for special occasions. Sukanya may be able to find a highly rewarding career in the fashion or beauty industry.
The fashion and beauty industry is burgeoning in India and it offers several fulfilling, creative and flexible career options for working women in India. Your previous work experience and interest in fashion and beauty can be of great help in easing into the new role without much trouble.
Parul Shukhla, founder of Image 4u Consulting, was working as a Human Resource (HR) professional in Banking, before she made a career for herself in image consulting. “The corporate environment felt sterile and boring. But my HR stint also equipped me with several skills which helped me in my new career,” says Parul. Fashion and beauty was always of interest for Parul. After a course from the Image Consulting Business Institute in Mumbai, she set up her own company.
Image consulting is a sunrise industry; it is a great career option…
“Image consulting is a sunrise industry; it is a great career option for someone who has done something related or has an interest in the field. You will be dealing with individual clients and corporates. It is a flexible career option which has a lot of scope for growth,” adds Parul.
Image consulting training courses will teach you how to find clients and to set up your own business.
If you have an eye for style, being a fashion stylist could be a great option for you. Stylists collaborate with clients, art directors and makeup artists on photo-shoots and ad-styling. A stylist also provides advice to individual clients on things such as how to coordinate costumes, what to wear to different occasions and what makeup is suitable. Good fashion stylists know how to choose the right outfit to suit the occasion and to flatter the individual wearing it. Stylists get to work with a lot of different people –from a student or housewife who wants a makeover, to celebrities and media professionals, making it a great job for women with people skills.
Nidhi Dalmia, a well-known fashion stylist in Bangalore, was working full-time with Levi Strauss before she started freelancing. As a stylist, Nidhi is responsible for sourcing costumes, designing and styling according to the client’s specific requirements. Nidhi is a double major in Fashion Designing and Fashion Marketing from The American College of Applied Arts, LA. “Fashion designing courses from institutes like NIFT or Shristi can help you get started in this field. Styling is a rewarding career option for those with a creative bent of mind. The pay is great and you get to balance your personal life with your work life,” says Nidhi.
Yani Shrivastava was an accent trainer before she took up makeup as her career. Yani now does makeup for fashion shows, portfolios, photo-shoots, TV commercials and weddings.
Anyone with an interest in makeup can pursue this career. “Train under a professional makeup artist rather than approaching big brands. Teaching yourself may not be a great idea if you want to go professional because it takes too long and novice mistakes can also harm your reputation. In this field, word of mouth reputation is everything,” reminds Yani.
Yani herself teaches a 1 month course on makeup. “Depending on the time you are willing to spend on it, makeup can be a very satisfying career option financially and otherwise. It takes roughly just about 6 months for students to recover their course fee,” says Yani.
For working women in India interested in fashion and also writing, fashion writing is a career option to consider. While there are many independent fashion bloggers out there, companies also hire in-house bloggers to write about their fashion, opening up more jobs for women in this field.
Fashion columnists specialize in a certain area of fashion and write on that topic regularly. Columnists are usually experts in their field.
If you are capable of handling more than one project and already have a bit of writing experience under the belt, you can also think of applying for the position of a fashion editor…
If you are capable of handling more than one project and already have a bit of writing experience under the belt, you can also think of applying for the position of a fashion editor for fashion websites online or beauty magazines. The fashion editor is responsible for coming up with story ideas and for coordinating between models, photographers, hair stylists and fashion designers for photo-shoots for the magazine. An editor manages all other fashion writers in the company.
You may also go the entrepreneurial route by setting up a salon, spa or a nail art studio. You may set these up independently or tie up with well-known brands as their franchisee. If designing clothes is what you are interested in, you may even consider setting up your own business after a fashion designing course.
It is never too late to take up a career in the fashion and beauty industry. With so many off-the-beaten-path career options available to working women in India now, you can now find a suitable niche where you have a flexible career and also bring your creativity to the fore.
*Photo credit: Nouna Andersson (Used under the Creative Commons Attribution License.)
Nisha Salim is a self-employed writer and a social media junkie.
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