In order to become a cosmetic chemist, you will typically need to obtain a college degree, though the type may vary. Some companies may require that you have at least a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree, though a master's degree may often lead to better employment opportunities. If you plan to become a cosmetic chemist, you should try to become involved in the local scientific community before or while pursuing your education. There are many locations where you can attend science conventions, fairs, or workshops, which can help to familiarize you with the industry.
Once you have researched the field and various job descriptions, you should apply to several universities that have well-developed science departments and that offer a major that will correlate with your career goals. Although most companies may accept a B.S. in biology, chemistry, or microbiology, you may want to consider a degree in chemical engineering which is widely accepted as a basis for this career. You will need to complete all necessary prerequisites before enrolling in courses that directly apply to your field. Consult with a college adviser in order to choose courses that will help you become a cosmetic chemist. Some of these courses may include chemical process dynamics, molecular modeling, and chemical and environmental technology.
During your four-year undergraduate program, you may want to apply to internships in the field in order to gain hands-on experience as well as valuable contacts for potential future employment. These opportunities will increase your chances to become a cosmetic chemist because future employers are often interested in your competency as a participant in this profession. Many students choose to participate in several internships during college, which can help display different aspects of the field. During your undergraduate studies, you should also begin exploring various graduate programs. Some students are able to continue their studies at the university that they attend for undergraduate coursework.
In addition to an advanced education and hands-on experience, it can be helpful to display excellent communication skills, technical writing abilities, and problem-solving skills. Once you have completed all necessary coursework to become a cosmetic chemist, you will need to create a resume that reflects any information that is associated with the field. The Internet is an excellent employment resource and you will want to research various cosmetic companies in order to find a position that you are qualified for.