Cosmetics Beauty Advisor

Published on: 16 May 2017

Job Description (What the job involves)

Within the cosmetics industry and beauty retail, beauty advisor roles are highly popular well sought after roles. Beauty Advisors may also be commonly called beauty consultants, counter staff or retail sales assistants.

Typically working within boutique shops or department stores, beauty advisors will work at a beauty counter on behalf of a particular skincare or makeup brand. Well known brands such as Clarins, Molton Brown, Benefit Cosmetics, MAC, Decleor, Elemis and Liz Earle are all employers of beauty advisors.

As a beauty advisor you will be expected to have advanced knowledge of the products you represent; for example the ingredients the liquid foundation contains, why the liquid foundation works, what skin types its suitable for  and how to apply it. Armed with this knowledge it is your job to competently answer queries from customers and through skincare consultations, demonstrations and makeovers be able to promote products which will best suit your customers needs.

Make no mistake a beauty advisor role is a sales role! Selling is the biggest part of the role. You will work to daily and monthly retail sales targets and at any given opportunity expected to traffic stop passing customers in a bid to entice them over to your counter so you can sell them your products.

When you’re not selling to customers you’ll be expected to look after your retail area; wiping down the counters, refilling counter displays, cleaning out the tester pods and restocking cabinets.

Hours and Working Environment

Beauty Advisors typically work at beauty counters within department stores and beauty boutiques. Hours are typically on a full time and part time basis and will often involve evening and weekend shifts. Some beauty advisors are hired on a seasonal basis to cover peak trading events like Christmas and Black Friday.

Upsides and Downsides


The earnings can be good especially if you sell well as you earn commission (on average 3-5%) on everything  you sell at your counter. If you sell an other brands products, perhaps because their sales advisor is off to lunch, then you can sometimes earn a lower rate commission of say 1%.

You learn new skills such as the application of makeup

And then of course there are the free and discounted product perks! You can easily be the envy of every girl out there!


Because the role of a beauty advisor is essentially a sales role it can be frustrating if you’re within a quiet store and don’t have sufficient footfall  to reach your sales targets. It can be especially difficult if there are insufficient people to traffic stop.

Having to constantly achieve sales targets can be high pressure to some people

Skills and Personal Qualities

  • Personal appearance is really important. You will need to look professional, presentable and be capable of applying and wearing your brand makeup well. Some companies can be very prescriptive as to how you wear your makeup
  • Good with numbers
  • Passion for the beauty industry and cosmetics
  • Confident
  • Personable and sociable, good at engaging with people
  • Able to provide excellent customer service
  • Passionate about makeup, cosmetics and beauty
  • Good at adapting to change
  • Target oriented; motivated to achieve sales goals
  • Can sell

Entry Requirements

Some cosmetic companies prefer to hire makeup artists and some skincare companies especially those selling salon grade products prefer their sales advisors to have a beauty qualification such as NVQ level 2 in beauty therapy.

Whilst it may be harder to get a cosmetics beauty advisor job without makeup qualifications it is certainly possible without any formal qualifications or previous experience as a therapist or makeup artist.

As long as you are well presented,  have a confident, outgoing personality, have a passion or interest in the beauty industry and can demonstrate that you can sell or have some form of selling experience then you stand a very good chance of landing yourself a job as a beauty advisor.

In any case cosmetics companies will invest training you in their products so that you can comfortably sell their benefits to others.

Opportunities and Progression

Skincare and cosmetic companies offer lots of advancement opportunities

Beauty advisors that consistently achieve their retail sales targets can progress to becoming a counter manager otherwise known as an account manager or cosmetic sales manager, effectively running the counter and being responsible for a team of beauty advisors.

Beyond that you can progress to becoming a retail business manager or store manager


View our latest beauty advisor job vacancies

Potential Salary and Benefits

Beauty Advisors can expect to earn on average anything from between £7 to £11 per hour or a basic annual salary of between £16,000 to £19,000 per year

% retail commission is usually paid in addition to this