Vermont is home to barbershops that are renewing the classic, American sense of masculine style and grooming. One of these barbershops, The Men’s Shop in Burlington, was voted one of America’s Best Salons and Barbershops by Men’s Health Magazine. Even further, the Vermont Department of Labor estimates that the number of jobs for hairdressers and stylists in Vermont will grow by 11% between the years 2012 and 2022. This means that there will be almost 80 positions opening up each year.
Clearly, now is a great time to start your barbering career in Vermont. In order to work as a barber in Vermont, will first need to be licensed by the Vermont Board of Barbers and Cosmetologists. As a Board-licensed barber, you will get to specialize in the cutting, styling, and designing of men’s hair.
For an explanation on how to become a licensed barber in Vermont, follow the steps in this simple guide:
Step 1. Complete a 1000-Hour Vermont Barber Training Program
The Vermont Board requires that you complete a training program from a formal barber school before you apply for the licensing exams. This training must include at least 1000 hours of both theory and practical training, including training on the following Board-required subjects:
- Shampooing and Related Chemistry
- Hair Cutting, Hairstyling, and Hair Shaping
- Permanent Waving
- Hair Straightening
- Basic Esthetician Facial
- Clipper Cutting
- Straight Razor Shaves
- Beard Trims
- Hair Coloring and Related Chemistry
- Lectures on Sanitation
- Sterilization and Disinfection
- Professional Ethics
- Vermont Laws, Rules, and Regulations
If you want to work as an apprentice, you will first need to submit an Application for Registration as an Apprentice Barber to the Vermont Board of Barbers and Cosmetologists. Then, you will need to train under the tutelage of a licensed barber supervisor in a licensed barbershop for at least 24 months. During this 24-month time period, you will need to accumulate a minimum of 2000 hours of hands-on training experience.
Once you complete the 2000 hours of barber training, you will need to submit the Barber Apprentice Verification form to the Board.
Step 2. Submit Application for Vermont Barber Examinations and License
As long as you are 18 years old, have successfully completed 12th grade (or equivalent), and have graduated from a 1000-hour barber training program (or completed an apprenticeship), you may apply for the state license exams.
Once you graduate, you will need to apply for your barber licensing exams directly with the testing vendor, Professional Credential Services (PCS). To submit this application for the licensing exams, complete the following steps:
- Download and Read the PCS Barber Handbook
- Create a PCS Account
- Complete Online Application
- Include Proof of Barber Training Hours (or Apprenticeship Hours)
- Include Copy of High School Diploma
- Include a 2×2 Photograph
- Pay $250.00 Examination Fees
Once you are registered, you will receive approval from PCS for the Vermont barber licensing exams, which include the theory and state law examination, and the practical examination. For the written exams, you will be emailed an Authorization to Test letter. For the practical exam, you will be emailed a Practical Admission Notice.
If you currently hold a barber license from another state, you may be eligible to receive a Vermont barber license by endorsement. This means that you will not need to take the national barber licensing exams, and you will apply directly to the Vermont Board for your license. To obtain this license, you will need to complete the following steps:
- Submit Application for Barber License by Endorsement
- Submit $110.00 Application Fee to the Vermont Secretary of State
- Complete Verification of Licensure Standing Form
- Submit Copy of High School Diploma or GED
- Submit Evidence of Barber Training (must meet 1000 hours of barber training)
- Register with Professional Credential Service (PCS) for the Vermont Jurisprudence Examination
Limited Barbering License
Vermont offers another unique barber license option—the limited barbering license valid for inmates incarcerated in state correctional facilities. In order to obtain this license, you must be currently incarcerated in a correctional facility and be in good standing concerning child support, taxes, district court fines, and restitution orders. You will need to also have a high school diploma or GED, and have obtained at least 10 hours of training under the direct supervision of a licensed barber. If so, you may complete and submit the Vermont Board of Barbers Limited Barbering License Application directly to the Board, which requires no application fee.
You may submit all endorsement or limited barber license application materials to the Vermont Board at the following address:
Office of Professional Regulation
89 Main St. 3rd Floor
Montpelier, VT 05620-3402
Step 3. Pass State Law, Theory, and Practical Vermont Licensing Exams
Once you receive your Authorization to Test letter and Practical Admission notice, you will be able to take the exams.
The theory exam is a written, multiple-choice examination that will test your knowledge on the following barber subject areas:
- Scientific Concepts – 40%
- Facial and Shaving Services – 15%
- Hair Care Services – 20%
- Chemical Services – 25%
The jurisprudence exam is a written exam covering Vermont Barber and Cosmetology Laws and Rules. If you are taking the jurisprudence exam to qualify for a Vermont barber license by endorsement, you will only need to pay a $160.00 fee for this exam alone. Otherwise, this exam fee is covered in the $250.00 fee that you would have paid for all three examinations.
For the practical exam, you will need to schedule a date and time in the testing center in Montpelier, VT. You will need to bring your own kit of supplies and mannequin to that testing center on your exam date. With those supplies, you will be graded on your ability to perform the following barber services:
- Set Up and client Protection
- Shaving with a Straight Razor
- Chemical Waiving
- Hair Lightening/Coloring
- Chemical Relaxing
Within 10 business days after taking the exams, you will be emailed your score notice. PCS will then electronically notify the Vermont Board of your passing exam scores. As soon as the Vermont Board is notified of your exam scores, the Board will issue you your Vermont barber license.
Step 4. Begin Working as a Licensed Barber in Vermont
Once you are licensed as a barber in Vermont, you may look for work at local barbershops. If you decide to work in an established barbershop, you will most likely rent a booth within the shop or work on commission. When looking for work, you may want to consider some of the following shops located in Vermont’s major cities:
- Romano Haircutters – Stowe
- The Men’s Room – Burlington
- Martin’s Barber Shop – Northfield
- Stowe Barber Shop – Stowe
- Mac’s Barber Shop – Brattleboro
The Vermont Board provides Booth Rental Information on their website
If you want to open your own barbershop, you will first need to obtain a barbershop license. To apply for a barbershop license, you will need to complete the following steps:
- Submit Completed Application for Barbershop License
- Pay $330.00 Application Fee
- Submit the Name of your Business
- Submit Floor Plan Information
- Complete Barbershop Inspection
- Submit Barber Shop Inspection Report
Step 5. Renew your Vermont Barber License On Even-Numbered Years
Your Vermont barber license will expire on September 30th of every even-numbered year.
If you hold a barber instructor license, you will need to provide proof of completion of 24 hours of continuing education during the licensing cycle.
Otherwise, to renew your license, all you will need to do is submit the barber renewal application and the $130.00 renewal fee.
Barber Salaries in Vermont
Barbers in the Green Mountain State are licensed by the Vermont Board of Barbers and Cosmetologists. The board ensures that license candidates are qualified, sets profession standards, investigates complaints and takes disciplinary action if needed. Persons wanting to pursue a barbering career in Vermont must first attend a minimum of 1,000 hours at a state-approved school and pass both a written and practical exam. There are at least three barbering schools in Vermont.
How Much Barbers Make in the United States
Barbers who work for salons, resorts, spas, rehab hospitals, prisons, etc., are paid a salary; however, many barbers are self-employed while others “rent” a chair in a salon for a fixed monthly fee. Client tips are an important part of a barber’s income. The average tip is 15 to 20 percent of the cost of the service rendered.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the 15,100 barbers in the US earn the following annual salaries and hourly wages:
How Much Barbers Make in Vermont
The Vermont Department of Labor’s occupational employment statistics do not list salaries for barbers, however, the 750 persons listed as “hairdressers, hairstylists and cosmetologists” earn the following annual salaries and hourly wages in Vermont.
Barber Salaries in Different Vermont Cities
According to online sources, the median barber salary in Burlington, Colchester and Essex is $26,909 and $28,001 in Rutland, the state’s third largest city.