Barber Certification and Diploma Program Overviews

A barbering program is where students can learn how to suggest hair-related treatments for clients, cut and style hair, and maintain their work area to state standards. These programs are open to high school graduates, culminate in a barber certificate, are often completed within one year.

Essential Information

Barber certificate programs provide students with basic, career-focused training. Additionally, barber certificate programs address safety and sanitation techniques, often covering state and federal sanitation laws.

There are also diploma programs in barbering, which provide students with classroom-based and practical, hands-on training in skills required to become barbers. In the classroom, students learn about safety, management, and sales. Significant time is spent in a supervised barbershop or salon setting where students practice performing haircuts and hair coloring.

  • Program Levels in Barbering: Certificate or diploma level.
  • Program Length: Nine months to one year.
  • Prerequisites: High school diploma or equivalent.
  • Online Availability: Typically not available due to hands-on nature of the training.

Certificate Programs of Training in Barbering

Students in barber certificate and diploma programs learn about the many techniques that will be required of them in their profession. Coursework may include the following:

  • Hair styling
  • Shaving
  • Barbering and styling tools
  • Skin and scalp care
  • Safety and sanitation
  • Barbershop management

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

Over 14,100 barbers were employed in 2014, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) ( Nearly 50% of barbers were self-employed, with the remainder working primarily for beauty salons and spas as employees. The BLS expects job opportunities for barbers to grow 13% from 2012-2022. This anticipated growth is the result of a growing population and demand for advanced hair treatments. The median hourly wages for barbers were $12.22, as of May 2014, reported the BLS.

Continuing Education

Barbers are required to be licensed, though requirements vary by state. Typically, barber certification steps include completing an approved training program followed by an exam with practical and oral components. While no advanced degree programs for barbers exist, those looking for advancement in management positions may pursue associate degrees in barber management or business.

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