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Becoming a Barber in Texas: Here’s What You Need to Know

Considering becoming a barber in Texas? We don’t blame you! After all, barber shops are rapidly gaining popularity, especially in hip urban regions like Austin. Plus, barber salaries in Texas outpace the national mean annual salary for barbers.

One of the first steps to becoming a barber in Texas is to attend a licensed school or program. There are two types of schools to consider: cosmetology school and barber school. So, what’s the difference between the two?

Barber School Vs Cosmetology Program

At barbering school, students learn how to cut, color and style men’s hair, including facial hair. While cosmetology programs focus on a wider variety of services catered to men and women, such as hair, nails, makeup, and skin care. Barber school is catered to hairstylists looking to specialize in men’s hair.

Learn about our flexible Cosmetology program made to fit your busy life.

The Basic Steps to Becoming a Barber

  1. Complete your high school education and earn a diploma
  2. Apprentice under a professional barber
  3. Enroll in and complete a barbering program
  4. Take the test to obtain a barber license

How to Become a Barber in Texas:

  1. Graduate from a 1,000-hour program or barber school
  2. Take and pass the Texas Practical and Theory Licensing Exams
  3. Obtain your Barber License from the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulations
  4. Don’t forget to renew your Texas license every other year! You cannot operate under an expired license.

Becoming a Barber: What You’ll Learn at Barber School

Barber school offers an overview of the basics, starting with things like theory, safety, and sanitation. Before moving on to more advanced techniques for shaving, coloring, and cutting. Most barber programs can be completed in 8 months. Along with attending barber school, you will be required to take on an apprenticeship for X number of hours.

While attending barber school, students are not permitted to earn money for cutting hair or performing any other barbering services. Why? Simply because they are not yet licensed.

The Texas State Board of Barber Examiners mandates the following courses for barber training programs:

  • Texas barber laws and rulesbecoming a barber in texas
  • Science of barbering
  • Histology of the hair, skin, muscles, and nerves
  • Hygienic bacteriology
  • Skin and hair issues
  • Facial treatments
  • Wig services
  • Head, neck, and facial structures
  • Basic chemistry
  • Hair weaving

Requirements for Becoming a Barber in Texas

Different states uphold unique requirements for barbers. In the great state of Texas, barbers must complete a certain number of program hours based upon the type of licensing they receive.

Types of barber licenses:

  • Class A Barber
  • Barber Instructor
  • Barber Technician Specialty License
  • Barber Manicure Specialty License
  • Barber Hair Weaving Specialty Certificate
  • Barber Technician/Manicurist Certificate
  • Barber Technician/Hair Weaver Certificate

To qualify, you must be at least 16 years of age. Barber instructors and specialty barbers must be at least 18 years of age.

becoming a barber in texas

Do you have to take a test to become a licensed barber?

Yes. There is a written and practical exam required for applicants who wish to become licensed in Texas. Attending barber school and apprenticing under an experienced barber offers the comprehensive education necessary to pass the test and earn a state license.

You have 100-minutes to finish the first portion of the test, the written exam. There are several cities throughout Texas where you can take the test on a computer. The written portion of the exam is intended to test your knowledge of everything from best sanitation practices to chemical waving.

The practical exam totals 180 minutes and requires applicants bring their own supply kits, models, and mannequins. A group of experts will assess your ability to perform seven different barber services: shampooing, permanent waving, shaving, hair shaping, as well as facial and chemical services.

Want to learn more? Contact the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation at 1-800-803-9202, or visit