Tag Archives: aesthetics school

Graduate Combines a Passion for Beauty and Fashion

New York’s “Brow Goddess” Gina Daddona shapes a clients brows.

New Milford, CT native Gina Daddona attended IAAS in 1993. After graduating from college with a degree in fashion, she began working in retail selling beauty products but wanted to somehow combine her interests of beauty and fashion. To do so successfully, she knew she needed in depth training in the beauty industry and that is what led her to the Institute of Aesthetic Arts & Sciences.

Upon completion of her studies at IAAS, Gina first took a job doing makeup and after that as an aesthetician in a salon. It wasn’t until she found a position in which she could combine both that she began to flourish. Living in New York and eventually getting more involved in fashion had always been her objective, so after a time she moved to New York and found work at a salon doing both skin care and makeup. Through networking and perseverance, she found a position at a top celebrity salon doing makeup with a focus on brow shaping. There she met Martha Stewart who hired her to do her makeup for tv appearances.

Gina continues to help celebrities such as Paris Hilton, Emmy Rossum, and Maria Shriver prep for tv, editorial and red carpet events along with many others. After several years of freelance and other salon work, she eventually ended up at the renowned Stephen Knoll Salon where she offers makeup applications and lessons, and of course brow shaping.

Actress Emmy Rossum had Gina apply her makeup for a red carpet event.

After many years she has really honed her eyebrow shaping skills – and in the past year was recognized by CBS and Allure Magazine as the go-to person for eyebrow shaping and makeup. Gina prefers tweezing and trimming (for the precision) and showing women how they can use makeup to really perfect their eyebrows as needed.

Gina likes the steady home base of a salon, a regular clientele (as well as celebrities) and the team dynamic. She is able to freelance on the side which includes being part of a team working backstage during fashion week twice a year (thrilling for a fashion major) (see fashion week blog posting) and doing some work with Dior cosmetics for VIP clients. She has also had the opportunity to travel with teams to Beijing, China and Cannes, France among other places for shows and events.

When asked if she has any advice for someone pursuing a career in makeup, Gina says, “I recommend lots of practice (on all skin tones, ages, and face shapes), knowing your industry and the people in it, finding established artists to assist, observing, listening, always learning, being professional, prepared, flexible, creative, business minded, and on time.  Showcase your work, be proactive and go after the jobs you want.”

Gina credits the training she received at IAAS as being the starting point of this wonderful life journey she is on. “After working all these years,” she says, “I know I am very fortunate to have initially trained at such a top notch facility and I am very appreciative. I loved it there, have such fond memories, it was everything I thought it would be and more. IAAS certainly got me on my way to being able to work as a creative artist which is what I love most about my job.”

Beauty Industry Jobs Continue to Grow

According to the Associated Press, in an article published April 22, recent economic challenges have been especially hard on young people trying to start their working lives with a high school education or less. Only about a third are working full time. Most study participants say money was a major reason they bypassed college and the vast majority plan to continue their education someday. According to the article, four in ten of those surveyed in the AP-Viacom telephone study whose education stopped at high school are unemployed, less than a quarter have part-time jobs.


Statistics from the beauty industry contrast with that gloomy outlook. In 2010, the beauty industry experienced a quick recovery in skincare, followed by a gradual upturn in makeup” over 2009 said Karen Grant, vp and sr global industry analyst, of The NPD Group who does industry analysis. Individuals who follow their dream by becoming aestheticians and make-up artists at IAAS can do so for a minimal investment of both time and money (vs a college education) and, depending on where they become employed, can recoup those education costs within the first 6 months or year of working. Our graduates are proof of what is possible!

Crystal Clear Oxygen Part of Princess’ Preparations!


According to British newspapers, Kate Middleton and her sister Pippa underwent a series of beauty treatments prior to the royal wedding, including Oxygen Therapy. Check out the attached clippings to learn more about the princess’s preparations!


Oxygen Therapy replenishes lost oxygen and the active ingredients in the serum restructure the skin, visibly plumping out the lines and wrinkles. The results are immediate and a Crystal Clear Oxygen facial continues to work long after the treatment, stimulating cell regeneration. It is also an excellent choice for acne conditions due to the anti-bacterial effect of the serum used. Potential scarring is reduced and the build up of bacteria within the skin is diminished.

We experienced this treatment in London 9 years ago and were the first to offer it in the US. This put our students on the cutting edge of training in the industry and our clients were the first to enjoy the results!


You don’t have to be a princess to enjoy such royal treatment … just give us a call!

IAAS at Vocational Fair

You are seeing more and more of us speaking to classes at area high schools and attending vocational events where we are being invited to tell students about alternatives to what is considered a traditional college education. College is not for everyone for either financial or educational reasons – or both! IAAS offers students an opportunity to learn a trade, in a shorter period of time, with much less debt, all resulting in a satisfying career to last a lifetime. Over 5,000 students and parents attended the Danbury High School College and Vocational Fair held at the Danbury Fair Mall and many stopped by to visit with Julie.

Pomperaug High College Fair

The second annual College / Post Secondary Option Fair was held at Pomperaug High School in April and Lorie was there to talk to region-wide high school students and their parents who are all facing the daunting task of what is next for their soon-to-be graduate. The most important factor in making this important life choice a successful one is understanding and accommodating the student’s interests and aspirations. Students with an affinity for all things beauty, make-up, and skin care have completed their IAAS training and gone on to build exciting careers in an assortment of areas including working at salons, owning their own salons, doing make-up application for fashion shows and even video shoots. IAAS can be the first step to a great future!

Flourishing in Florida

Dalia Diaz has written to let us know she is working 6 days a week at a Massage Envy in Florida where she recently relocated with her family. She is servicing facials & massage and tells us “I love my job, money is good, the hours are great. I do think of you often … So grateful to have been your student. Thank you always.” We teach our passion and it means so much when our students feel as strongly about what they learn. We enjoy hearing their feedback and hear so many positive stories as our graduates head off to pursue careers that they love.

Aesthetics: A Career That Suits Any Age

In the October 2010 issue of Les Nouvelles Esthetiques & Spa, Marion Dove wrote an article discussing how older students are better equipped to work compassionately with clients who are experiencing the effects of aging. Whether driven to the industry because of skin issues they experienced themselves or seeking a more flexible and satisfying career, older women can relate to the issues of this ever increasing audience seeking their help. Dove states that, according to the California Employment Development department, “A primary force in driving the growth of the esthetician occupation is the increase in maturing baby boomers seeking skin care services to forestall or hide the aging process.” Dove goes on to state that the US Department of Labor predicts a marked increase in jobs in the industry through 2014 resulting from an increase in baby boomers looking for help improving their skin and minimizing the effects of aging. At IAAS we have trained students of all ages, and have found that you are never too old to learn something new, especially if it is something you love. And as women, we often are happiest when helping others feel good about themselves.