In this post, I will be sharing my advice for high schoolers going into cosmetic chemistry. This post is a targeted, but anyone wanting to get into the field will find this post useful. I have been asked many times how does someone get into cosmetic chemistry. The reality is that there is no one way or one answer. What works for me may not for you. Forewarning that this post will be all over the place, I want to give you well-rounded information on many topics.
During high school:
During high school is the time to find what you are interested in. If you are reading this post, you already have somewhat of an idea, which is already a great start. Not everyone has a plan during college none the less high school, which is okay too. Don't also be afraid to change major if you have to. It is the best time to take classes at an "easier" level during your time in high school, for example. Taking human physiology and anatomy is one. I will list some classes that I recommend later in this post.
Remember to save all your notes and worksheets; they will help you in college. In high school, they present you information in a controlled way while with college you have to know every detail that they present you. I want to let you know that if you struggle in high school chemistry, it is okay. It is not an easy topic.
High School is not whether you know the Pythagorean theorem or not. I know it feels like it, but it is more of; can you apply logic, analyze given information, and relating your classes to what you want to do or are interested in. The last one is super important and it totally changed my perspective and make high school a lot easier. It will also allow you to enjoy them more. I know that this may not be as easy with a pandemic, but that still does not mean that you can get something out of it.
Below, I will share some of the classes that I recommend you take. I know that each school has different classes and requirements, but here is a good outline.
Classes I recommend these classes:
I am so glad that I started one because now I have been able to do a job with it before I have gotten my degree. Please don't get me wrong, I have done many courses over the years and have purchased many things to get to the stage I am now, but I do not want you to wait. A connection that you make will help you so much.
Before you graduate:
Now is the time to decide on what college you want to go to. There are specialized colleges for cosmetic chemistry. The other option, which is the one that I am doing, is getting a general chemistry degree. You don't have to get a chemistry degree either. Chemical engineers, biologists, biochemist's can all get jobs in the cosmetic industry. So don't feel like you are stuck with only a chemistry major.
If you want a completely online option, there are two that I recommend: the society of cosmetics chemists and the Institute of Personal Care Science.
First, congratulations on graduating! Whether you were in a pandemic or not, you have completed a major life accomplishment. Now is when you will take classes that relate to the field you want to be in/ Make sure to get to know your professor and other students. I know that it is not easy, but connections are so important at this time. Now is the time to make a social media account for yourself. You can always discuss what you are learning. Creating your own personal brand is really important in the industry. It can be quite competitive, so you want to stand out in any positive way that you can.
High school and college are two different animal. The biggest things that you have to adjust to, is being required to know all information presented to you, learning A LOT of information at once, spending less time in class, and more time on your own time studying and working thought the material.
You will have very hard classes that you will parley pass and that is okay. Especially ones that are not for your major this is not uncommon. As we naturally want to focus on the classes that are for our major.
Work/school/social life balance is very hard to balance.
With the pandemic, a lot of classes have been all online, the tool that you have are just as important as the information the you get ( e.g.: book). For me that was getting a writing tablet and then needing to get an iPad to do work. As a note, make sure to save your work, as not saving document is huge.
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