What does a Barber do?

Learn all about Barber duties, skills and much more. Get expert advice on how to become a Barber.

Photo of Brenna Goyette
Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 3 min read

A barber is someone who cuts and styles hair, usually in a salon. They may also shave beards or give other grooming services.

Barber job duties include:

  • Cut, trim, taper, curl, wave, perm and style hair, using clippers, combs, brushes, curlers and rollers.
  • Shampoo and rinse customers' hair.
  • Apply lather and shave beard or shape hair contour around the neck and face.
  • Massage and shampoo scalp.
  • Recommend hairstyles to fit customers' lifestyles.
  • Schedule customer appointments.
  • Keep work stations clean and orderly.
  • Sterilize scissors, combs and other instruments.
  • Order supplies as needed.

Barber Job Requirements

There are no formal education requirements for barbers, although most complete a barbering program at a technical school or community college. Many states require barbers to be licensed, which generally involves completing an approved barbering program and passing an exam. Some states have additional requirements, such as continuing education courses. Most barbers learn their trade through informal apprenticeships with experienced barbers.

Barber Skills

  • Barbering
  • Haircutting
  • Hairstyling
  • Razor cutting
  • Shaving
  • Clipper cutting
  • Fading
  • Texturizing
  • Hair coloring
  • Beard trimming
  • Shaping
  • Styling

Related: Top Barber Skills: Definition and Examples

How to become a Barber

There are many reasons why someone might want to become a barber. For some, it may be a family tradition. Others may be attracted to the creative aspects of the profession. And still others may simply enjoy working with people and helping them look their best. Whatever the reason, becoming a barber can be a rewarding career choice.

The first step to becoming a barber is completing an accredited barbering program. This will provide you with the necessary skills and knowledge to perform the job properly. Many programs can be completed in as little as nine months, although some may take up to two years. Once you have completed your program, you will need to obtain a license from your state's cosmetology board.

After completing your education and obtaining your license, you will be ready to start working as a barber. You may choose to work in a traditional barbershop or salon, or you may opt to open your own business. Whichever route you choose, it is important to market yourself well and build a strong clientele. Word-of-mouth is often the best form of advertising for barbers, so providing excellent service is essential.

Becoming a barber can be a fulfilling career choice that offers both personal and financial rewards. With hard work and dedication, you can build a successful business doing something you love.

Related: Barber Resume Example

Related: Barber Interview Questions (With Example Answers)