Barbershops embody classic American manly style and invoke a sense of community. Utah is a great place to begin your career as a barber, since there is a booming market for men’s grooming services services. For example, Rays’ Barbershop, which opened in 2005, expanded from a one-chair-operation to three locations with over 30 chairs as of 2014.
Even further, the Utah Department of Workforce Services estimates that the number of personal appearance worker jobs in the state will grow by 31% between 2012 and 2022. This means that over 250 new personal appearance worker positions will open each year during that time period, making now the perfect time to begin your barbering career in Utah.
Before you can begin working as a barber in Utah, you must first obtain a barber license from the Utah Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing (DOPL). As a Division-licensed barber, you will specialize in cutting, styling, and designing men’s hair and facial hair.
In order to be licensed by the Utah Division of Licensing, you will need to first complete the education and examination process. For guidance on how to become a licensed barber in Utah, follow these simple steps:
|Graduate from a 1000-Hour Utah Barber Training Program
|Submit the Utah Barber License Application
|Pass the Practical and Theory Utah Barber Licensing Exams
|Begin your Career as a Utah Barber
|Renew your Utah DOPL Barber License Every Two Years
Step 1. Graduate from a 1000-Hour Utah Barber Training Program
Your first necessary step toward attaining a Utah barber license is graduating from a training program offered through a barber college. These programs are created to teach you how to excel as a barber—whether marketing yourself among other barbers or opening your own shop.
DOPL requires that you complete 1000 hours of training, including, but not limited to, the following barber training subjects:
- History of Barbering
- Personal, Client, and Shop Safety
- Sanitation, Disinfection, and Sterilization
- Business and Shop Management
- Developing a Clientele
- Professional Image and Ethics
- Public Relations and Advertising
- Human Immune System
- Science of Barbering
- Analysis of Hair and Scalp
- Basic Hairstyling and Hair Cutting
- Shaving and Razor Cutting
- Mustache and Beard Design
- Utah Barber Examination Review
If you choose to obtain your education through an apprenticeship, DOPL requires that you complete 1,250 hours of one-on-one training under a licensed barber instructor. The Instructor will need to keep a sign stating “Apprentice in Training” at their barber chair, and they will need to submit a daily record of your theory and practical hours of instruction to DOPL.
Step 2. Submit the Utah Barber License Application
Once you have completed your Utah barber education, you will be able to submit your application for your barber license. To submit this application, all you need to do is complete the following steps:
- Submit State of Utah Barber License Application
- Attach Supporting Documents
- Complete Verification of Graduation Section
- Attach $60 Application Fee (made payable to DOPL)
You may send your application to DOPL at the following mailing address:
Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing
PO BOX 146741
Salt Lake City, UT 84114-6741
Step 3. Pass the Practical and Theory Utah Barber Licensing Exams
For your barber license application to be complete, you will need to obtain passing scores on the National-interstate Council of State Boards of Cosmetology (NIC) barber examinations. You will need to obtain these passing scores within one year of submitting your barber license application.
To register for these exams, you will need to register directly with the testing vendor, PSI services, and you will need to fully read the PSI State of Utah Barber Examinations Candidate Information Bulletin. Once you register, you will need to pay the fee of $174.00 for both examinations directly to PSI. Then, you will be able to schedule the date, time, and location for your two licensing exams: the practical and the theory examination.
You will have 100 minutes to complete the practical exam. You will need to bring your own supply kit and mannequin head, and with those, you will be graded on your performance of barber services. The practical exam will include the following barber services:
- Set Up and Client Protection (10 minutes)
- Shaving with a Straight Razor (20 minutes)
- Haircutting (30 minutes)
- Candidate Summary and Final Cleanup
You will have 90 minutes to complete the theory exam. This written, multiple-choice exam will cover barber subject areas including, but not limited to, the following:
- Scientific Concepts
- Infection Control
- Anatomy and Physiology
- Electricity and Light
- Skin Histology
- Haircutting and Styling
- Draping Procedures
- Facial and Shaving Services
- Facial Treatments
- Hair Care Services
- Client Consultation
- Scalp and Hair Analysis
These exams may be taken in any of the following test center cities in Utah:
- North Orem
- North Salt Lake
You must pass both of these exams with a score of 75% or higher. You will be able to see your unofficial scores immediately, and your examination results will be sent to the Utah Division within three business days of you completing the exam. Once DOPL receives your passing exam scores, you will be issued your Utah barber license.
Step 4. Begin your Career as a Utah Barber
Though many of the more popular barbershops in Utah are located in Salt Lake City, opportunities for chair rental or conventional employment are scattered throughout Utah in cities like Ogden, West Jordan, Orem, Sandy, Clinton, and Payson. Some of Utah’s top shops include:
- Ray’s Barber Shop – Salt Lake City
- Tonya’s Famous Cuts of Utah – Salt Lake City
- Chai’s Barber Shop LLC – Salt Lake City
- Classic Beauty and Barber LLC – Payson
- Deseret Barber Shop – Salt Lake City
Step 5. Renew your Utah DOPL Barber License Every Two Years
You will need to renew your license by September 30th of odd years. You will want to keep your address on file with DOPL current, as they will send important documents, such as renewal materials and notices by mail. You may correct your address through the online license web update page.
If you have not corrected your address on file with DOPL, you can retrieve your renewal ID and information by calling the Division at (801) 530-6628. You may then renew your Utah barber license and pay the $52 renewal fee with the paper renewal form, or online through the Utah Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing online renewal center.
Barber Salaries in Utah
The Utah Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing issues barber licenses to individuals who pass a two-part (written and practical) state board exam after completing either 1,000 hours of training at an approved school or 1,250 hours of apprenticeship under a licensed barber. There are no other education or age requirements and job prospects are good. Utah has the nation’s third lowest unemployment rate (3.6 percent).
Utah has at least six barbering schools conveniently located in such cities as Salt Lake City, Provo, Ogden, Sandy and Layton. Students learn professional etiquette as well as the latest methods and techniques for shaving and hair trimming/styling.
Statewide Salaries for Barbers in Utah
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) does not list Utah salaries for barbers per se; however, the following table compares national barber salaries with Utah salaries for “Personal Care and Service – all others.”
The Utah Department of Workforce Services lists the Median annual salary for Personal Care and Service as $27,620. It is noted that barber salaries are significantly affected by both location and tipping. An independent small-town barber can realistically expect to be tipped between 10 and 20 percent of the cost of the service while a barber working at a high-end ski resort might receive tip of 30 or 40 percent.
Salaries in Different Cities of Utah
Neither the BLS nor the Utah Department of Workforce Services publish salary tables for barbers in Utah cities or areas. However, aggregated figures from online salary sources for annual barber salaries in various Utah cities are as follows:
It is noted that Sandy, South Jordan and West Jordan are considered suburbs of Salt Lake City.