Barber Schools and License Requirements in Maryland

As a barber, you get to be the authority on men’s style, sophistication, and class, and Maryland is a perfect place to start your career. As of 2012, the Maryland Department of Labor indicates that almost 700 barbers were employed in Maryland, not counting those who own their own shops or are otherwise self-employed. Maryland’s close proximity to New Jersey and New York allows barbers in the state to be close to the most influential areas in the nation for men’s fashion, while still having the space to innovate and create a barbershop business that reflects their own style.

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For a guide on how to become a licensed Maryland barber, follow these simple steps:

Complete 1200 Hours of Maryland Barber Training
Pass the Maryland Barber Theory and Practical Licensing Exams
Submit Maryland Barber Original License Application
Begin your Career as a Barber in Maryland and Keep your License Current

Maryland is home to many innovative barbershops, such as the Quintessential Gentleman, or the QG, located in Baltimore. The QG is not just a barbershop, but it is also a spa, a cigar room, a wet-bar, a lounge, a tailoring business, and a retail store. All of this combined into one gives each man who enters an individual experience in class and sophistication. It is easy to see why The Quintessential Gentleman has won several “Best Of” and “Top Salon” awards.

Clearly, starting your barbering career in Maryland at barbershops like these is an excellent career move.

If you’re ready to start your career as a barber in Maryland, you will first need to be licensed by the Maryland Board of Barbers. This Board is responsible for regulating the education and exam requirements for barber licensing throughout the state.



Step 1. Complete 1200 Hours in a Maryland Barber Training School

Your first step toward a Maryland barber license is graduating from a barber training school. The Maryland Board requires that you complete at least 1200 hours of theoretical and practical barber training that covers:

  • Barbershop Management and Sales
  • Maryland Laws, Rules, and Regulations
  • Hair Cutting
  • Hair Styling
  • Hair Coloring
  • Facials
  • Shaving
  • Facial Hair Design
  • Anatomy, Chemistry, and Electricity
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If you already have connections in the industry that would be willing to offer you training, the Maryland board will allow you to complete an apprenticeship. If you choose to complete an apprenticeship, you will need to first be registered as an apprentice barber. To be registered, you will need to complete an apprentice application form and sponsorship form.

Once registered, you will need to obtain a minimum of 2250 hours of training under the direct supervision of a licensed barber.



Step 2. Pass the Maryland Barber Theory and Practical Licensing Exams

You will register for and take your licensing exams directly with Maryland’s testing vendor, Prometric. Before you create an account and schedule your exams, you should download and read the Maryland Barber Candidate Information Bulletin. After reading this, you will register and schedule the two licensing exams: the Maryland Barber Theory Exam and the Maryland Barber Practical Exam.

Maryland Barber Theory Exam

This exam has 100 questions, and you will have two hours to complete it. You are required to past this exam with a score of 70% or higher in order to obtain a Maryland license. This written exam will test your knowledge on the following barber subjects:

General Concepts – 20 questions

  • Infection Control and Bacteriology
  • Sanitation
  • Shop Safety

Hair and Scalp – 15 questions

  • Structure
  • Composition
  • Growth
  • Analysis
  • Conditions and Disorders

Physical Services – 20 questions

  • Shampoo and Rinses
  • Scalp and Hair Care
  • Facials
  • Shaving

Chemical Services – 15 questions

  • Hair Coloring
  • Chemical Waving
  • Chemical Hair Relaxing

Hair Styling and Shaping – 10 questions

  • Hair Cutting
  • Hair Styling

Maryland Laws, Rules, and Regulations – 10 questions

  • Licensing
  • Sanitation

Maryland Barber Practical Exam

The practical exam measures your ability to physically perform barber services. You will need to bring your own supply kit and mannequin for this exam. You are required to pass this with a score of 70% or higher. Finally, you will be required to complete the following barber services within 84 minutes:

  • Basic Blended, Tapered Haircut – 21 tasks
  • Shave – 21 tasks
  • Permanent Wave – 20 tasks
  • Final Cleanup – 15 minutes

Prometric offers the barber license exams in two Maryland locations:

  • Baltimore
  • Bethesda

After you successfully pass your license examination, the Board will send you final instructions in the mail on how to obtain your initial Maryland barber license. You will receive these instructions within 10 days of completing the examination.



Step 3. Submit Maryland Barber Original License Application

Once you receive the final license instructions, you will need to submit your final application. Once you receive these forms and license number, complete the following steps:

To log on to submit the barber license application, you will need the registration number and license type on the forms that the Maryland Board sent you upon passing your licensing exams.

License by Endorsement

If you have a current barber license in another state, you may be eligible to apply for a Maryland barber license by endorsement. To do so, you will need to provide the Board with the following information:

You may send all of your application materials that are not online to the Board at the following mailing address:

State Board of Barbers
500 N. Calvert Street
Room 201
Baltimore, Maryland 21202



Step 4. Begin your Career as a Barber in Maryland and Keep your License Current

In Maryland, you may look for jobs as a barber in local barbershops, hospitals, nursing homes, or even correctional facilities. If you’re looking for some of the best-rated Maryland barbershops, consider some of the following options:

  • The Suite Barbershop – Silver Spring
  • Traville Barber Shop – Rockville
  • East Patrick Barber Shop – Frederick
  • Laruel Barber Shop – Laurel
  • The QG – Baltimore

Attaining a Barber Shop License

If you want to advance your career, you may even open your own barbershop! Doing this gives you control over the shop’s hours, location, and atmosphere. To open your own shop, all you need to do is follow these steps:

Master Barber

If you would like to advance your career even further, you may apply to become a Maryland Master Barber. Having the master barber title will showcase your skill, education, and abilities. To become a master barber, you must meet the following eligibility requirements:

You will need to renew every two years. The Maryland Board will send you renewal information and instructions 60 days before your license is set to expire. Once you receive this notification, you may renew your Maryland barber license and submit the $50.00 renewal fee online.

Barber Salaries in Maryland

The need for personal care and service workers, such as barbers, will steadily climb in Maryland. According to the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation, 699 barbers enjoyed employment statewide in 2012. Jobseekers can expect this number to rise to 737 through 2022.

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Local employers that recently used online job advertisements to search for barbers and stylists with a barber license in Maryland include:

Floyd’s 99 Barbershop
Ultimate Image Salon
In & Out Barbershop
Baltimore Country Club
Jason’s Family Barber Shop
Cartoon Cuts

Average Salaries and Wages for Barbers in Maryland

A great way to gauge how much a barber makes in Maryland is by researching the average salaries and wages for personal care and service occupations. In 2013, this occupational group earned an average entry-level pay of $17,068/yr. or $8.25/hr., an average mean pay of $27,232/yr. or $13.00/hr., and an average experienced pay of $32,315/yr. or $15.50/hr.

Salary Percentiles for Barbers in Maryland

In 2013, the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics reported barbers in Maryland were earning within the following salary percentiles:

10th Percentile: $17,300/yr.
25th Percentile: $25,400/yr.
Median Percentile: $30,900/yr.
75th Percentile: $39,400/yr.
90th Percentile: $44,600/yr.

Wage Percentiles for Barbers in Maryland

In 2013, the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics reported the wage percentiles among barbers in Maryland were as follows:

10th Percentile: $8.32/hr.
25th Percentile: $12.20/hr.
Median Percentile: $14.86/hr.
75th Percentile: $18.94/hr.
90th Percentile: $21.46/hr.

Geographic Pay Variations for Barbers in Maryland

To view the geographic pay variations for personal care and service workers, like barbers, please refer to the following figures provided United States Bureau of Labor Statistics in 2013:

Area name
Annual mean wage
Baltimore-Towson MD
Bethesda-Rockville-Frederick MD Metropolitan Division
Estimate not released
Hagerstown-Martinsburg MD-WV
Washington-Arlington-Alexandria DC-VA-MD-WV Metropolitan Division
Estimate not released
Wilmington DE-MD-NJ Metropolitan Division
Upper Eastern Shore nonmetropolitan area

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