How Much Is Barber School? Answering the Big Question

You’ve been thinking about becoming a barber. Getting paid to cut hair sounds like a sweet gig. But before you grab the clippers and go all Sweeney Todd, you’ve got one big question – how much is barber school anyway?

Barber school isn’t cheap, but it’s not as pricey as you might think. With some smart planning and a few sacrifices, you can swing it. This article will break down the real costs step-by-step so you know exactly what you’re getting into. We’ll look at tuition, tools, licensing exams, and everything else you need to budget for.

By the end, you’ll have a solid idea of the investment required to start your career clipping, snipping, and fading. The numbers might surprise you, but don’t let sticker shock stop you from going for the gold. Your future clients are waiting for you. Let’s dig in and find out how much that barber chair is going to cost you.

The Costs of Barber School

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The cost of attending barber school can vary quite a bit depending on the school you choose and the program you enroll in. On average, barber school tuition ranges from $5,000 to $20,000 for the entire program.

Tuition and Fees

Tuition covers the actual barber training and education. Most barber schools charge tuition by the hour. You can expect to pay between $5 to $15 per hour of instruction. Schools may charge additional fees for registration, books, equipment, and licensing exam fees.

Additional Expenses

You’ll need to budget for additional expenses on top of tuition and fees. This includes buying supplies like combs, scissors, razors, and clippers which can cost $500-$1500 total. You may also want to invest in a barber chair, mirrors, and other equipment if you plan to open your own shop after school. Transportation and living costs also need to be considered if you attend a school far from home.

School-Based Financial Aid

Some barber schools offer scholarships, grants, and student loan programs to help with costs. Check with schools you’re interested in to see what kind of financial aid they provide. Private student loans and personal loans are other options if you need additional funding beyond what the school offers.

The total cost of barber school is an investment in your career as a barber. While the tuition and expenses may seem high, the potential payoff of a stable career as a barber can make the investment worthwhile. With the right skills and experience, barbers can earn upwards of $30,000 per year.

Some factors that affect your earning potential as a barber include:

  • The location and demographic of your barbershop
  • The number of hours you work each week
  • The specific services you provide (e.g. shaves, coloring)
  • Building a loyal client base through excellent customer service
  • Continually improving your skills with ongoing education and practice

With hard work and the right mindset, becoming a barber can be a rewarding career path. While barber school costs money, the education and training provide the foundation for a successful career.

Tuition Fees for Barber Programs

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Barber school tuition varies quite a bit depending on the program and school you choose. On average, tuition for a barber program in the U.S. ranges from $10,000 to $20,000. Barber programs usually take between 9 to 18 months to complete, so the total cost will depend on factors like:

Program length

Shorter programs around 9 months will typically cost less than longer 18-month programs. The longer the program, the more hours of instruction and the higher the tuition.

School type

Tuition at private barber schools is usually higher than at public schools or community colleges. For-profit schools also tend to charge higher tuition.

Additional fees

In addition to tuition, most barber schools charge fees for things like application, registration, kits, and exams. These additional fees typically range from $1,000 to $3,000.

Financial aid

Many students rely on financial aid like scholarships, grants, and student loans to pay for barber school. Schools that offer more financial aid and scholarship opportunities can help lower the out-of-pocket cost for students.

The total investment in a barber school education pays off for many, with the potential to earn a good salary as a barber. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median pay for barbers in the U.S. is over $24,000 per year. Experienced barbers, especially those with additional certifications, can earn $30,000 a year or more.

While the cost of barber school is an important factor to consider, you’ll want to evaluate schools based on other aspects like program outcomes, instructor experience, job placement rates, and student satisfaction. Finding the right balance between cost, quality of education, and career opportunities will help ensure you get the best value from your barber school training.

Additional Expenses to Factor In

Once you’ve decided on a barber school, you’ll need to budget for more than just tuition. While the cost of your education is a big part of your budget, additional expenses will also need factoring in.


As a barber student, you’ll need to invest in some essential tools of the trade. Things like scissors, combs, clippers, razors, and brushes will set you back a few hundred dollars. You may be able to find kits that bundle many of these items together at a lower cost. Don’t forget things like a barber chair, mirror, and sterilization equipment which your school may or may not provide.

Licensing and Certification

Nearly all states require barbers to be licensed or certified. Licensing fees typically range from $50 to $300 depending on where you live. You’ll also need to pass a written exam which usually costs between $75 to $200. Some states require barbers to complete a certain number of training hours before becoming eligible for licensing, so you may face additional costs to fulfill those requirements.

Continuing Education

To maintain your license, barbers must complete a certain number of hours of continuing education every 1-2 years. The cost for continuing ed courses and seminars varies but may range from $100 to $500 per session. Staying up-to-date with the latest cutting, coloring and styling techniques is important for any barber wanting to excel in their career.

While the total cost of barber school and everything that comes with it may seem daunting, the potential rewards of a thriving career as a barber make the investment worthwhile. With hard work and perseverance, you can build up a loyal client base and charge premium rates for your services. Many barbers are able to recoup their educational costs fairly quickly after finishing their training.

Barber School Scholarships and Financial Aid

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Paying for barber school is a big concern for many aspiring barbers. Luckily, there are several options for scholarships, grants, and loans to help fund your education.


Many barber schools offer scholarships for new students. These are usually awarded based on need or merit. To apply, you’ll have to fill out an application, which typically includes an essay explaining your goals and financial situation. Some schools also offer scholarships for students who maintain a certain GPA. It’s worth checking with schools in your area to see what’s available.


Federal grants like the Pell Grant or FSEOG Grant provide money for school that you don’t have to pay back. To qualify, you must demonstrate financial need by filling out the FAFSA form. The maximum Pell Grant for 2020-2021 is over $6,000, which can go a long way toward paying for barber school. State grants may also be available for residents.

Student loans

If you need additional funding beyond scholarships and grants, student loans are an option. Federal student loans should be your first choice, as they offer fixed interest rates and flexible repayment plans. Private student loans tend to have higher interest rates and less favorable terms. Only borrow what you need to pay for school expenses.

The total cost will depend on the specific program and school you choose. But with a combination of these resources, barber school can absolutely be affordable. Do your research, fill out all necessary applications, and don’t be afraid to ask your school’s financial aid office for help. They want to see you succeed, so take advantage of all opportunities available to you. You’ve got this! With hard work and persistence, you’ll achieve your goal of becoming a barber.

How Much Is Barber School? Key Takeaways

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Barber school tuition can vary quite a bit depending on the program and school you choose. However, you can expect to pay between $10,000 to $20,000 for a quality barber college education. The good news is there are many ways to lower the cost through scholarships, grants, and student aid.

Tuition and Fees

Most barber schools charge tuition based on the number of hours required for your program. You’ll need a minimum of 1,500 training hours to become a licensed barber in most states. At $10-$15 per hour, you can expect to pay $15,000-$22,500 in tuition alone. Barber schools also charge additional fees for things like registration, books, kits, and exam fees which typically add $500-$2,000.

Financial Aid and Scholarships

The good news is you have options to lower the cost of barber school. Filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form can help determine your eligibility for need-based federal grants, loans and work-study programs. Barber schools themselves often offer scholarships and grants for new students. Private organizations, nonprofits, and your local community may also offer barber scholarships. Don’t hesitate to ask about financing options during your consultation with different barber colleges.

Comparing Schools

With the cost of barber school varying significantly between programs and schools, it pays to compare options in your area. Look at factors like the number of hours, training offered, cost, job placement rates, and student reviews. Visit schools that interest you, meet with admissions counselors, and get a feel for the environment. While cost is important, don’t choose a school based on price alone. Look for a program that will thoroughly prepare you for your licensing exam and a successful career as a barber.

By exploring all your options for lowering costs, you can find an affordable path to a new career as a barber. With hard work and determination, barber school can be a worthwhile investment that pays off for years to come.


So you’re interested in barber school, but wondering how much it will cost. That’s a great question, and the answer depends on several factors. In general, barber school tuition ranges from $10,000 to $20,000 for the full program.

The main things that determine the total cost are:

-Location- Barber school tuition varies in different areas of the country. Schools in larger cities and more expensive areas will typically charge higher tuition than schools in smaller towns or rural areas with lower costs of living.

-Public vs. Private- Public barber schools are often more affordable than private barber colleges. Public schools receive government funding, so they can offer lower tuition. Private barber schools do not receive this funding and have to charge higher rates to operate.

-Length of Program- Most barber school programs take between 9 months to 15 months to complete. Schools with longer programs that award more advanced certifications or associate’s degrees will usually have a higher total tuition cost. Shorter programs typically cost less overall.

Other costs to keep in mind are supplies, kits, and licensing exam fees. You’ll need to purchase barber tools, kits, and supplies which can cost $500-$2,000 or more. You’ll also have to pay a fee to take your state’s barber licensing exam, which is usually a few hundred dollars.

The good news is there are financing options available to help make barber school affordable. You can apply for scholarships, grants, and student loans. Many barber schools also offer their own institutional scholarships or financing plans with low or no interest.

While the total cost of barber school is an important consideration, don’t let the tuition deter you from following your dreams. With available financing options and the potential for a rewarding career, barber school can be well worth the investment. If you have a passion for cutting hair and creating stylish looks, go for it! The cost may be higher than you expected, but so are the rewards.


So there you have it. Barber school can cost anywhere from a few thousand bucks to over twenty grand depending on which program and school you choose. It’s definitely an investment, but becoming a licensed barber opens up a career path that can pay off big time.

Just make sure to weigh the costs against potential future income, shop around for the best value, and explore financial aid options. Then get ready to start your journey towards an awesome, creative career cutting hair! With hard work and dedication, you’ll be well on your way to living the barber life before you know it.

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