As of 2013, the Connecticut Department of Labor reported that there were a total of 1,693 active barber licenses in the state. To keep up with the growing demand for professional grooming services, the Department of Labor expects to issue about 40 new licenses every year for the foreseeable future.
If you want to become a barber in Connecticut, you must first become licensed by completing the following steps:
|Complete an Approved Barber Program|
|Submit an Exam Registration Form with Prometric|
|Apply for your Connecticut Barber License|
|Find a Job in Barbering and Keep your Connecticut Barber License Current|
The Connecticut Department of Public Health’s Examining Board for Barbers, Hairdressers, and Cosmeticians regulates the practice of barbering through a comprehensive licensing process. The Board defines barbering as including the following practices performed for cosmetic purposes on the head, face, and neck:
- Applying oils, clays, lotions, powders, and other cosmetic preparations to the face, scalp, or neck
- Applying oils, lotions, creams, or other preparations
- Cutting hair
- Dying the hair or applying hair tonic
- Giving facial and scalp massages
- Shaving or trimming the beard
- Styling or cutting hairpieces and wigs
Step 1. Complete an Approved Barber Program
The first step to barber licensure in Connecticut is the completion of a barber program that consists of at least 1,500 hours of study and is approved by the Connecticut State Board for Barbers and Hairdressers or recognized by the Connecticut State Board of Education.
The Board maintains a list of approved barber schools that you can find here.
Approved barber college programs must contain the following:
- At least 150 hours must be devoted to instruction in the theoretical aspects of all content areas.
- The remaining hours must be devoted to supervised practice that is integrated with ongoing theoretical and practical instruction.
Theoretical content areas must include:
- Sanitation and hygiene
- Anatomy and physiology
- Chemical procedures
- Hair care and treatment
- Skincare/facials and manicuring
- Haircutting, styling, and shaving
- Business and professional relations
The barbering curriculum must include:
- Hygiene and good grooming
- Sanitation procedures
- Universal precautions/infection control
- Properties and disorders of the skin
- Properties and disorders of the hair and scalp
- Chemical procedures
- Hair coloring and lightening
- Chemical waving
- Chemical hair relaxing
- Haircare and treatment
- Shampoos and rinses
- Scalp and haircare
- Hair cutting, styling, and shaving
- Safety measures
- Care/styling of wigs
- Safety measures – shaving
- Business and professional relations
- Salon management
- Safety measures/client protection
- State laws/rules and regulations
Step 2. Submit an Exam Registration Form with Prometric
Once you have successfully completed an approved program in barbering, you must submit an exam registration form with Prometric in anticipation of taking the required examinations for barber licensure in Colorado.
The Department of Health has contracted with Prometric to conduct its examination program. Therefore, you must submit the Exam Registration Form or complete it online at www.prometric.com/connecticut/cosmetology.
Once Prometric has processed your registration, they will send you an admission letter that provides you with the time, date, and location of your examination. You must present your admission letter when you arrive to take the examination. The barber examination consists of two parts—a written (theory) examination and a practical examination. Both examinations are administered in the Greater Hartford area.
The Connecticut Barber Examination is a closed-book exam that consists of 80 multiple-choice questions. You will have two hours to complete the exam.
You can expect to receive a score report within 10 days of completing your barber examinations. You must receive a score of at least 70 percent to pass the examination. Once you pass the barber exam, you must contact the Department to begin the next step in the licensing process.
Step 3. Apply for your Connecticut Barber License
The final step for a barber license in Connecticut is applying for your license. You must complete the Barber License Application and send the completed, signed, and notarized application to the Department of Public Health, along with an application fee of $100 (made payable to Treasurer, State of Connecticut).
Once the Department has received your completed application, along with all necessary documentation, you will receive your Connecticut barber license.
Step 4. Find a Job in Barbering and Keep your Connecticut Barber License Current
All barber licenses in Connecticut must be renewed biennially and a renewal fee of $100 must be paid at that time to keep your Connecticut barber license current. There are no continuing education requirements for Connecticut barber licenses, although many of these personal care service professionals pursue study through coursework, seminars, and networking opportunities.
Many barbers also choose to complete study in areas such as management and marketing if they have aspirations of operating their own barbershop.
Employment opportunities and contracted chair rental opportunities may be found in any one of Connecticut’s top barbershops:
- Flint’s Barbershop, Vernon
- Paulie’s Professional Barber Shop, South Windsor
- Headz Up Barber Shop, New Haven
- Constitution Plaza Barber Shop, Hartford
- Vip Barber Shop, Bridgeport
- Wayne’s Barber Shop, Mystic
Barber Salaries in Connecticut
The salaries of barbers in Connecticut increased by 4.4% in the past five years according to the state’s Department of Labor. Although this agency provides salary levels for barbers in 2014, these figures are on the low side for what barbers actually earn. This is because they do not take tips into account, and customer tips typically add 10 to 25% to their take-home pay.
Barber salaries by city in Connecticut:
Bridgeport – $47,000
New Haven – $44,000
Hartford – $47,000
Earnings for Barbers Based on Experience
The salaries for the state’s barbers varied a great deal depending on how experienced they were. Barbers with more experience are better at pleasing their customers, so they secure more clients and earn better tips.
Experienced barbers in the state earned $9,755 more than their colleagues just starting out in 2014:
The average salary for barbers in Connecticut was $25,626
The average salary for Connecticut’s entry-level barbers was $20,384
The average salary for experienced barbers in Connecticut was $30,139
While entry-level salaries are much lower than what experienced barbers in Connecticut earned, it was 17% more than entry-level barbers made on average in the rest of the country.
Projected Increases in the Number of Licensed Barbers in Connecticut
In 2012, there were 1,240 barbers working in Connecticut according to the state’s Department of Labor. This agency expects their numbers to increase by 6.5% through 2022 to keep pace with growing demand. This level of growth will result in 81 new jobs a year becoming available over this ten-year period.
In addition to the jobs that will come from the increasing demand for barber services in Connecticut, a number of positions will become available as barbers in the state stop practicing, sell their shops and enter retirement. The Connecticut Department of Labor expects that their retirement will generate an additional 40 jobs a year for barbers in the state.