Maryland Licensing Overview for a Barber

Licensing for a barber in Maryland is controlled by the Maryland Board of Barbers.

General Guidelines for a Barber in Maryland

Specific requirements to perform barber services can generally be used as a guideline, but make sure to check with your local governing rules and regulations.

Who’s allowed to perform these services?

Anyone holding a barber license

General requirements for a barber license?

Barber – 1,200 hours or 2,250 hours apprenticeship + pass barber exam
Master Barber – barber license + 15 months work experience + pass master barber exam

What’s the state licensing site for a barber?

Maryland Board of Barbers

What are some training programs available for a barber?

See training programs

How long is a license good for and when do I need to renew?

Every 2 years

What are fees associated with licensing?


Barber Licensing

A barber is a professional who specializes in the cutting, styling, and grooming of men and boy’s hair and beards. This profession has a long-standing history filled with tradition and is an important subsection of the beauty industry. Many of the techniques and tools of barbering are as old as the profession itself. This includes the tools, techniques and overall aesthetic of the barbershop itself. Barbers are experts in their field.

To become a licensed barber in the state of Maryland there are several steps that must be taken.

  1. The completion of a formal barber program or apprenticeship
  2. Apply for registration with the Maryland Board of Barbers
  3. Undertake state licensing exams
  4. Ensure your license remains up to date


The completion of a formal barber program or apprenticeship

In Maryland, there are two ways to gain the necessary qualifications to become a licensed barber: through a formal barbering program or through an apprenticeship. When going the route of a formal barbering program, students are required to undertake a minimum of 1,200 hours of registered coursework.

To become a licensed barber through an apprenticeship, students are required to undertake a minimum of 2,250 hours of training under the direct supervision of a fully licensed barber.


Undertake state licensing exams

In the state of Maryland, there are two licensing exams that must be completed: the theoretical exam and the practical exam. Barber examinations in Maryland are conducted by Prometric.

The main concepts that will be covered in the theory exam may include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • Scientific concepts
  • Hair services
  • Facial hair services
  • Skin care and facial services

The main concepts that are covered in the practical examination may include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • Set up and client protection
  • Haircutting
  • Shaving with a straight razor
  • Chemical Waving
  • Virgin hair lightening
  • Chemical Relaxing

Barbers will be sent an official notice from the Board detailing their results from both examinations. If successful, barbers will be eligible to apply for licensing registration in the state of Maryland.


Apply for registration in the state of Maryland

Following the completion of formal education, either via an institution or apprenticeship, barbers are required to apply for registration with Maryland Board of Barbers. In order to have this application processed, applicants are required to submit:

  • The initial application registration form
  • An application fee of $50
  • Education transcripts


Ensure your license remains up to date

Licensed barbers are required to update their license every two years. There is a fee of $50 for this renewal. This can be done online through Maryland’s State Board website.

There is currently no ongoing education needs for barbers during their licensing period in the state of Maryland. However, many barbers may choose to undertake ongoing education to further their career opportunities and stay up to date in current fashions and trends.