Barbers, Hairstylists, and Cosmetologists

What Barbers, Hairstylists, and Cosmetologists Do

Barbers, hairstylists, and cosmetologists provide haircutting, hairstyling, and a range of other beauty services.

Work Environment

Barbers, hairstylists, and cosmetologists work mostly in a barbershop or salon. Physical stamina is important, because they are on their feet for most of their shift. Many work full time, but part-time positions are also common.

How to Become a Barber, Hairstylist, or Cosmetologist

All states require barbers, hairstylists, and cosmetologists to be licensed. To qualify for a license, candidates are required to graduate from a state-approved barber or cosmetology program and then pass a state exam for licensure.


The median hourly wage for barbers was $15.61 in May 2020.

The median hourly wage for hairdressers, hairstylists, and cosmetologists was $13.16 in May 2020.

Job Outlook

Employment of barbers, hairstylists, and cosmetologists is projected to decline 1 percent from 2019 to 2029.

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