At a recent mock certification test at Moro Beauty College, two esthetician students would be judged and two would get facials and make-up.
As the rest of the class observed, Benilda Macaraegi and Evelyn Alquiroz began beautifying their mock clients, Rebecca Sullivan and Parisa Morid.
Each of the esthetician students studies directly under Mary Moro, the owner of the college, who has been teaching there for 36 years. She also teaches classes for cosmetology and manicuring students.
Moro watched as Macaraegi and Alquiroz prepared their work stations, arranging items from kits packaged carefully with just enough tools needed to give a facial, apply make-up, and disinfect when necessary.
“Ms. Moro,” as the students address her, confirmed that the kits were duplicates of what are allowed at the state board exam.
Moro administers the mock exam, which is modeled after the two-hour test, when her esthetician students are close to completing 600 hours of work. (Cosmetology students need 1,600 hours).
The facial that Macaraegi and Alquiroz were tasked with giving was a general one, with no heavy-duty cleansing or extractions, and much of the emphasis was on application methods.
“This is not the job,” Moro said. “This is the means to the job.”
When Macaraegi and Alquiroz took tweezers to their subjects’ eyebrow arches, Moro said the state board judges would want to count at least five or six collected eyebrow hairs.
When Alquiroz massaged her model’s face, Moro made a teaching moment out of it.
“See how the pace, the rhythm of her hands slide over the face? It just comes with practice,” she said, also noting that a nicely paced massage earns higher test scores.
Once Alquiroz and Macaraegi finished the facial portion of the test, they applied makeup using at least two eye-shadow colors, liquid foundation, blush, lipstick and eyeliner before applying fake eye lashes.
The observing students, a tight-knit group, remained quiet through the end of the exam.
Afterward, Morid, 24, spoke about what she has enjoyed about Moro Beauty College. She chose to become an esthetician after spending past work days behind a desk.
“I like working with people and being around people. It takes a certain type of person to become a facialist. It’s intimate. You need to have a certain care for people and have a certain touch.”
Even if she returns to the office someday, Morid said, “at least I have a new skill set.”