Barbers vs. Hairdressers: What’s the Difference?

Evergreen - barber vs hairstylist (1)
People everywhere are unsure of the differences between barbers and hairdressers. That’s OK! Sometimes, the lines can seem blurry. We’re here to educate you on their differences!

barbershop pole

A Brief History of Barbering

Barbers have been around for over 5,000 years. They traditionally acted as dentists and surgeons. In fact, the red and white barbers pole was used to hold leeches which drew blood from the patient. Eventually, barbers began to give up medical pursuits and started cutting hair. The history of barbering is full of fun facts and interested information. Who knew that barbers were once considered healthcare professionals?

Are Barbers for Men and Hairdressers for Women?

Some men prefer to use barbers because barber shops usually have a masculine environment. Unlike hairdressing salons, they have simplistic decor and a number of male employees. That being said, women are welcome at barber shops. However, most female consumers opt to go to a hair stylist. Barbers are trained in cutting hair into simple styles. They do not color hair hair or use complicated cutting techniques. Men that need to have their hair colored or want a fashionable haircut tend to go to hairdressers.

Is The Training for Barbers Different Than Hairdressers?

male barber working in barbershop

Barber Training

Barbers need to undergo different training than hairdressers. People in this job need to train intensively for 10 to 12 months. The training is available from specialized beauty schools and includes a written exam and a practical demonstration. In the United States, every state has its own Barbering Board. This board often includes certification for cosmetology. Graduates will have to go to the board and apply for a license. This license will need to be renewed regularly. If a barber is very experienced, he or she may become certified as a master barber in some states.

female hairdresser working in a salon

Hairdresser Training

Unlike barbers, hairstylists do not focus on specific haircuts. Instead, they spend their time crafting new looks for their clients’ hair. Hairdressers are not trained in trimming neck hair or shaving the face.

Should I Go to a Barber or a Hairdresser?

Ultimately, your needs will determine whether or not you choose a barber over a hairdresser. Unless women want a simplistic cut, they will generally be better off with a stylist. Men who need to get their hair cut quickly and efficiently should consider using a barber. Those who want color, highlights, or the latest trendy hairstyle are unlikely to get these services at a barbershop.

I Want to Become a Barber or Hairdresser!

If you are considering a career in hair cutting, you should contact us. Evergreen Beauty college offers courses in both hairstyling and barbering. The staff at the school will be able to talk to you about our courses and how taking one will impact your career path. If you cannot afford to study, we can advise you of various grant and scholarship opportunities.

Financial aid is available to those that qualify.

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K WilliamsFrank - Beauty College AmbassadorShaylee PackerJanFranklin White Recent comment authors
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Ashley Johnson
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Ashley Johnson

I liked that you said that men who want a quick and efficient haircut will go to a barber. I have been trying to determine where to send my fiance for a haircut but I haven’t been sure. I will send him to the barber so that it is completed quickly and correctly.

Freaky beaky
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Freaky beaky

Control freak

Lauri
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Lauri

That does NOT mean that a licensed cosmetologist who has been trained to do men’s haircuts cannot do it quickly and efficiently. You just literally have to look at someone work.

Jan
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Jan

Jeez let him go where he wants to. ffs

SMB
Guest
SMB

Is it embarrasing for a man to become a hairdresser and work in a beauty salon with lots of female colleagues and female clients?

Frank - Beauty College Ambassador
Admin
Frank - Beauty College Ambassador

No Way! There are some amazing men that are hairdressers … if you look in any of the local magazines that offer “Best Salons and Shops” you’ll find a ton! It’s an incredible industry!

Lauri
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Lauri

Ok I am asking a licensing question. Are barbers in Alabama allowed to do color and hilites on clients under their barbering license.

BlackBeard
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BlackBeard

See our barber shop in Poland – https://blakbeard.com.pl

Dave Anderson
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Dave Anderson

That is interesting that barbers need to undergo different training that hairdressers. Maybe it would be good to go to a barber and try them out. Then I would be able to get a different feel from someone trained differently.

kyle kidd
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kyle kidd

I appreciate that you mentioned that a barber will be trained in trimming facial hair. My brother told me about when he got his face professionally shaved, and I want to have the same thing done because it sounds awesome. When I look for someone to do it, I will be sure to consider a barber because they are trained in that sort of thing.

Tracey's Hairdressers LTD
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Tracey's Hairdressers LTD

Thanks, a lot you provide very good information.

Franklin White
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Franklin White

Thanks for the tip to go to a barber if a guy needs to get his haircut quickly. I need a haircut but I really don’t want to be there for a long time. I’ll find a barber near me that can get it done in like 15 minutes.
https://www.freshkutz.com/

Shaylee Packer
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Shaylee Packer

As you mentioned, if you want color, or highlights with your haircut, you should go to a hairstylist rather than a barber. My aunt is looking for a new salon to go to. She has very curly hair, and wants to find someone who specializes in that. I will have to share these tips with her, and see what she thinks. https://upandupsalon.com/

Frank - Beauty College Ambassador
Admin
Frank - Beauty College Ambassador

Shaylee, I think you make a very valid point, especially in states where the scope of barbering is limited (like Washington state). However, there are states that allow for a Barber to do chemical applications, like color and highlights, and there are some very talented barbers out there 🙂

K Williams
Guest
K Williams

Barber training. You are wrong im a barber u dont know what your talking about. Barbers go to school for 9 months 1500 hrs we are license to cut men snd women you are not. barber industry dont make a big deal about cutting mans hair but touch there face you will be fined.

K Williams
Guest
K Williams

Barbers are licensed to cut men and women !