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If you are contemplating the idea of becoming a personal stylist, you may have many questions about the advantages and disadvantages and will need to know it's the right thing for you before making a final decision. As a personal stylist and image consultant for the past ten years I hope I can give you some insight into whether it's right for you.

Fashion is a passion?

I think that just like excellent teachers are born not made, so are brilliant personal stylists. Yes, training courses are necessary, but a strong passion for what you do is essential. Do you love shopping, watching Gok Wan and looking at fashion websites? Do you enjoy clothes and make-up yourself? If you're a visual person and love people-watching, this is a good start. If you've helped friends or family in the past with their clothes and make-up, personal styling could be just the job for you.

Enthusiastic and energetic?

Personal stylists ideally need to be energetic and extroverted. I deal with many different clients in a week, many of them with little self-confidence and low self-esteem. It is important to be able to keep your own energy levels up as you strive to be inspirational and motivational to others. Often I will be talking to large groups of people at major events or carrying out marketing presentations where energy and enthusiasm can make the difference between average and great performances. Speaking to large groups doesn't fill me with dread but gives me a buzz! A big part of my work is dealing with new clients and being good with people means I can quickly build a relationship with them. A friendly manner is necessary to help people open up quickly so you can understand more about them and their needs.

Organised and self-motivated?

Being a self-employed personal stylist is wonderful in many ways: you get to work the hours that you want to work so it can work well as a full time career or alongside other commitments. However, you must be self-motivated and organised. Ultimately there is no boss but yourself to pat you on the back and tell you that you're doing a good job. On the other hand, the thank-you messages you get from transformed clients is rewarding and motivating in itself.

If you aren't organised you can find that you miss opportunities so you need to plan a whole year ahead, making sure that you have a strategy for the year's major events such as Christmas. You will need to make sure you plan wisely and allocate time for seeing clients, time for marketing, book-keeping etc. as well as time for your other commitments.

So if you would still like to become a personal stylist and shopper, why not find out more about the training courses available?

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Beth Price is a senior personal stylist with ColourMeBeautiful. Based in Herefordshire she offers advice on all aspects of personal image, including colour analysis, style consultations, make-up lessons and how to become a personal stylist and shopper.

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