Level 2


Course Level

Level 2


1 year full-time


Included in course




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Creative Services
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£1.3m invested in subject-related practical facilities to support your future career opportunities

Progress onto Level 3 Beauty Therapy/Level 3 Theatrical Special Effects, Hair and Media Make-Up

Want to take the first step towards a career in make-up? Our Level 2 Beauty Therapy Studies (Make-up) college course provides you with an introduction to the cosmetics and make-up industry, giving you a blend of essential knowledge and practical skills to help forge your way towards your dream job.

This beauty make-up course requires no prior knowledge or experience – only a passion for beauty therapy, make-up and the creative application of products. Training in our well-equipped salons at University College Birmingham, you will benefit from hands-on, practical experience under the guidance of experts. To give you a thorough understanding of the industry, you will learn about areas ranging from make-up application to the art of photographic make-up and client care.

Whether you aspire to become a cosmetics specialist or freelance make-up artist, completing this course will provide you with an excellent platform for further study and work in this exciting creative sector.

Find out more about this course and the college by ordering a physical copy of our college prospectus by clicking here.

Why choose this college course?

  • BOOST YOUR SKILLS – Develop practical skills from make-up application to spray tanning, eyelash and brow treatments as well as client care and other essentials
  • WORK PLACEMENT – From salons and spas to theatre and schools, take on a range of work placement opportunities to put your skills into practice in the real world
  • ENRICHMENT – Enjoy enrichment opportunities to enhance your studies along with industry-focused modules
There are lots of reasons why we think you should study with us, but here are our top 5. View video.

Our facilities

University College Birmingham has a range of teaching facilities and equipment for students on our hair and make-up courses, including purpose-built make-up studios and state-of-the-art salons.

Course breakdown

Topics you will study

  • Applying Make-up
  • Instruction on Make-up Application
  • Eyelash and Brow Treatments
  • Skin Tanning
  • Providing Facial Skin Care
  • The Art of Photographic Make-up
  • Body Art Design
  • Displaying Stock and Promoting Sales
  • Client Care and Communication in Beauty-Related Industries
  • Health and Safety in the Salon

You will also have an individual study programme to help you build the skills and experience you need to progress onto higher education or gain employment.

Maths and English

To help you secure your dream career, you will also continue developing your maths and English skills alongside your full-time course. If you haven’t achieved GCSE grade 4/C in English and maths at age 16, you will continue to study these through resits or taking Functional Skills at an appropriate level.

How maths will support your career

  • Ratios are very important, for example when mixing hair dye.
  • Basic addition and subtraction are important in calculating the costs of equipment/products and managing stock.
  • Percentages are key in working out customer discounts.
  • Area and perimeter are important when designing and arranging a salon space.

How English will support your career

  • Accurate spelling and a wide and specialist vocabulary are key in the presentation of hair and beauty products and services.
  • Good quality speaking and listening skills are needed when communicating with colleagues.
  • Customer service requires good English skills in speaking and written communication.
  • Accurate reading is a vital skill when following instructions for hair/beauty products and treatments.
  • Secure English is important when preparing a CV or business proposal, or when advertising/marketing your business.

Entry requirements

  • Ideally, you will require a minimum of 4 GCSEs at grade 3 (grade D) or above.
  • School applicants will be required to provide a good school report, which must include attendance.
  • If you do not have a grade 4 (grade C) or above in English and maths and you are under 19, you will be required to complete an assessment so we can ensure you receive appropriate support. Applicants over 19 are not required to complete maths and English.
  • You should be committed, enthusiastic and have a desire to succeed in the make-up and beauty industry.

Key information

Teaching and assessment

There are practical assessments and some written assessment papers in addition to training in a realistic working environment.

Our teaching and assessment is underpinned by our Teaching, Learning and Assessment Strategy 2021-2024.

Uniform and kit costs

This course requires a uniform and kit costing approximately £190 depending on the items you purchase. (Prices are subject to change each year – exact costs and information on how to order required items will be provided to you prior to enrolment.)

You may be eligible for the Learner Support Fund, which assists college students with course-related costs such as essential uniform, equipment and travel. For more information, please visit our Financial Support for College Students page.


of graduate employers say relevant experience is essential to getting a job with them

Work placements

Work placements offer a wealth of benefits alongside your studies, helping you put your learning into practice, develop your skills and understanding of the workplace, boost your CV for your chosen career or enhance your UCAS application for higher education. Our hired@UCB team can help find the ideal placement for you.

As part of your Level 2 make-up course, you will attend a work placement. The length of time and schedules vary between days and block weeks, with opportunities available within salons, spas, theatrical productions and face painting in schools.

Work alongside experts in your sector

A snapshot of some of the employers we have worked with:

  • Alyn Waterman Make-up and Hair Design
  • Anastasia Photography
  • Anawim Women's Centre
  • Bentley House student accommodation
I chose to apply here because of how much detail is in the course. My favourite module is art and photographic make-up – you can do so much with period, fantasy and bridal looks. With all the equipment, I’m able to create many things, and I don’t think I could do that elsewhere.

Danae Robinson Make-up Specialist Level 2 [Now Beauty Therapy Studies (Make-up) Level 2]

Career opportunities

On completion of the Level 2, you could progress onto our Theatrical Special Effects, Hair and Media Make-up Level 3 or Beauty Therapy Level 3 course. Alternatively you could pursue a range of employment opportunities within the industry.

Note: Some roles below may require further study/training. The roles and salaries below are intended as a guide only.

Make-up artist

Average Salary: £21,161


Average Salary: £21,500

Beauty advisor

Average Salary: £19,500

Retail artist cosmetics/make-up

Average Salary: £20,000


We are here to support your career goals every step of the way. 


Find out more

Mandy’s Story

With a passion for skincare and beauty, Mandy learned so much more than make-up techniques, enabling her to offer clients ‘a complete package’.

Read Story

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