Virginia Licensing Overview for a Barber
Licensing for a barber in Virginia is controlled by the Virginia Board of Barbers and Cosmetology.
General Guidelines for a Barber in Virginia
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?
1,500 hours of training at barber school or 3000 hours apprenticeship
Must pass licensing exam.
What’s the state licensing site for a barber?
What are some training programs available for a barber?
How long is a license good for and when do I need to renew?
Renews every 2 years by date of original licensure.
What are fees associated with 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. A barber’s job is primarily in customer satisfaction, which revolves around the customer service, friendliness, and communication of the barber.
To become a licensed barber in Virginia there are several steps that must be taken.
- The completion of a formal barber program or apprenticeship
- Apply for registration with the Virginia Board for Barbers and Cosmetology
- Undertake state licensing exams
- Ensure your license remains up to date
The completion of a formal barber program or apprenticeship
In Virginia, there is only one method in which to gain the necessary qualifications to become a licensed barber: a formal barbering program. Students are required to undertake a minimum of 1000 hours of registered coursework at a barber college. This will be sufficient to practice as a barber following examinations.
Virginia does not currently allow apprenticeships as a career path to become a barber.
Apply for registration in the state of Virginia
Following the completion of formal education via an institution, barbers are required to apply for registration with the Virginia Board for Barbers and Cosmetology. Once this application has been processed, barbers are then able to apply for the licensing examinations. Barbers will also be required to create an online account. In order to have this application processed, applicants are required to submit:
- The completed application
- A barber diploma
- A copy of a driver’s license or birth certificate
- A passport photograph
- An $85 theory examination fee
- An $85 practical examination fee
Undertake state licensing exams
In Virginia there are two licensing exams that must be completed: the theoretical exam and the practical exam. Barber examinations in Virginia are written and conducted by the National Testing Network in association with Ergometrics.
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
- Shaving with a straight razor
- Chemical Waving
- Virgin hair lightening
- Chemical Relaxing
Upon the successful completion of both examinations, barbers are required to log into their Ergometrics account and manually print off their results. Next, they are required to mail these results to the Virginia Board for Barbers and Cosmetology along with the licensing fee. A barber’s license to practice within Virginia will then be issued.
Ensure your license remains up to date
Licensed barbers are required to update their license each year following notice from the board. This can be done easily online through the Virginia State Board’s online license renewal portal. There is a $140 renewal fee.
There is currently no ongoing education needs for barbers during their licensing period in Virginia. However, many barbers may choose to undertake ongoing education to further their career opportunities and stay up to date in current fashions and trends.