Barbering Schools in Washington
Washington state is one of the highest-paying states for barbers. So, if you're considering a beauty career in Washington, barbering may be worth a look.
The job pays well, has a higher-than-average expected growth rate and lets you choose whether to learn your trade through a barber program or apprenticeship.
Read on to learn more about becoming a barber in Washington, including licensure requirements, exam expectations, and more. Browse our directory of barbering schools in Washington, or skip ahead to learn about the state's barbering licensing requirements and job outlook.
Browse All Barbering Schools in Washington
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Aveda Institute Portland, Vancouver Campus – Accredited
Vancouver, WA 98661
International Beauty Education Center – Accredited
Airway Heights, WA 99001
Paul Mitchell The School Spokane – Accredited
Spokane Valley, WA 99037
You must attend a school that meets any licensure requirements as defined by your state. Most states require that you graduate from an accredited or state-approved school.
Barbering Schools Near Me
- 1,000 education hours or 1,200 apprentice hours are required to become licensed.
- You must renew your license every 2 years.
- 0 continuing education hours are required to renew your license.
- The average salary for barbers in Washington is $63,140.
- There is a predicted 17% job increase between 2020–2030 for barbers.
If you like working with your hands in a social environment, a barbering career is worth considering. Becoming a barber in Washington State allows you to work in a growing field where you help clients look and feel their best.
Barbers supply services like shaves, haircuts, and beard trims to clients of all ages and backgrounds. The best barbering programs also provide insight into essential business topics like accounting, management, and marketing.
If you're interested in a Washington barbering career, you must meet specific state-regulated licensure requirements:
Prospective barbers must be at least 17 and hold a high school diploma or GED. If you meet these eligibility requirements, you can hone your barbering skills through a state-approved barber school or apprenticeship.
State-approved programs require a minimum of 1,000 hours of instruction and review of the theoretical and practical topics covered on Washington's barber licensing exam.
After completing your training program, you need to pass a licensing exam administered by the Washington State Department of Licensing. The test comprises written and practical sections, and after passing the exam, you can apply for your barber license.
What to Expect From a Barber Program in Washington
Required to earn a barbering license
Barber programs in Washington state provide the foundational knowledge and skills needed to jumpstart a successful barbering career. State-approved programs cover at least 1,000 hours of instruction in various barbering areas, including haircutting, coloring, safety, and sanitation.
Throughout your Washington-based barbering program, expect to cover essential haircutting techniques for varied hair types and styles. These programs also teach you how to perform shaves and beard trims and give instruction on the various tools of the trade, how to use them efficiently, and how to maintain them effectively.
Running a profitable barbershop requires more than just haircutting skills, and standout Washington barber schools cover business management, client retention, accounting, and marketing topics.
Customer service is another essential element of barbering, and students learn to communicate effectively with clients, build relationships, and provide a stellar experience. You also become familiar with the rules and regulations of the barbering field.
Common topics you may encounter during your barbering program include the following:
Can I Apprentice as a Barber in Washington?
Required to earn a barbering license
Like its cosmetology apprenticeships, Washington State provides an apprenticeship pathway for those who want on-the-job training instead of a traditional barbering program. If this sounds like a good fit, find a licensed barber willing to take you on as an apprentice.
To meet state requirements, you must complete at least 1,200 hours of supervised training at a licensed shop under the watchful eye of a licensed barber.
Throughout your apprenticeship, you focus on developing the skills you'd learn in a barbering program. After completing the minimum training hours, you must pass Washington's licensing exam.
If you think an apprenticeship may serve you better than a barber program, consider a few components to find the best apprenticeship:
Washington Barber Licensing Requirements
Completing your apprenticeship or barber program is essential to your training, but it all culminates with Washington's barber licensing exam. Preparing for the barber exam can feel daunting, but you could ace the test with the proper guidance and preparation.
Washington's barber exam includes written and practical portions testing your knowledge and skills in various barbering areas. Common test topics include haircutting, beard trimming, and sanitation practices.
To pass the test, you must earn a minimum score of 75% on both exam sections. The cost is $60 for the written test and $120 for the practical test.
Understanding Washington's barbering exam's content, format, and scoring is vital for success.
The written part of the Washington barber exam is computer based and includes 100 multiple-choice questions. You have 90 minutes to complete this portion, and questions often cover the following:
The practical exam assesses your technical skills in a real-world setting and tests three areas: haircutting, shaving, and beard trimming. You must bring your own equipment, supplies, and mannequin head to the exam. The test breaks down as follows:
After receiving passing scores, you're eligible to apply for your licensure. You can apply online and must pay a $30 licensing fee.
Washington Barber License Reciprocity
If you're a barber wanting to transfer your license to Washington, there's a streamlined process that includes:
If you have not passed a written and practical exam, you must pass the state's barbering exam before earning your new license.
Barber License Renewal in Washington
License renewal period
Continuing education required
After earning your initial Washington barber license, you must renew it biannually. To complete the renewal process:
Washington State does not require continuing education credits for renewal
Barber Salary and Projected Job Growth in Washington
Average yearly salary for barbering in Washington
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, barbers in Washington earn an average annual salary of $63,140 in 2022. While cost-of-living typically influences wages, barbers in Washington earn almost$24,000 more annually than the national average.
Contact the Washington State Board of Barbering
- 405 Black Lake Boulevard Southwest, Olympia, WA 98502
- Website: State of Washington Dept. of Licensing, Cosmetology Licensing Program
- Email: DOLCosmo@dol.wa.gov
- Call: 360-664-6626
- Fax: 360-664-2550
Resources for Barbers in Washington
Washington State Department of Licensing
This is your go-to page for licensing and renewal information in Washington.
Washington Barber Association
Part of the American Barber Association, this professional organization can assist with everything from education to licensing.
Washington State Department of Labor & Industries
This agency oversees workplace safety and health in Washington state. You can find information on these regulations and workers' compensation insurance.