How to become a Barber

The Learning Curve Group Hair & Beauty Academy is a dynamic and innovative vocational training organisation that specialises in high quality hairdressing training. Is barbering right for me?

Barbering can be a hugely rewarding profession, both creatively and financially. In recent years the profession has been gaining popularity. This is because there is always a consistent demand and, therefore, steady employment opportunities. Creative jobs that offer an income are hard to come by, and as the fashion industry adapts and evolves more and more artistic people are beginning to realise that barbering can be a very satisfying creative outlet. 

Why choose a barbering apprenticeship?

Why choose a barbering apprenticeship?

People who have taken an apprenticeship in the workplace generally have much more confidence with the skills they have learnt. They are also often better able to meet the expectations and needs of employers.

Training and support

LCG Hair & Beauty Academy training in barbering will provide you with the barbering and ‘salon ready’ knowledge and skills that employers need for you to be able to do the job well.

You’ll have a tutor who will mentor and support you with your progression and achievement on the programme and will develop an individual learning plan to meet your needs.

Pastoral care

We will ensure that your learning takes place within a safe environment. Employer engagement managers and safeguarding officers are based at each of our academies and together with your tutor they are all there to support you throughout your time at our academies and to make sure you have access to and are aware of the support and opportunities that are available to you.

Our employer engagement managers will support you with getting a job, CV writing and preparing for an interview, as well as providing links to services that can assist you with a variety of issues such as financial advice, careers advice and safeguarding issues.

Career progression

Many apprentices progress to working as a barber within the salons they trained with and some go on to train for a hair professional apprenticeship to extend their range of skills and knowledge.

Some of the career opportunities available following an apprenticeship at LCG Hair & Beauty Academy are:

  • Salon stylist/barber

  • Colour technician

  • Salon manager

  • Freelance hairdresser/barber

  • TV/film work

  • Trainer/assessor

  • Teaching

How do apprenticeships work?

How long do you have to go to school to be a barber?

By completing a barber apprenticeship programme you will be fully qualified within 15 – 18 months.

How do apprenticeships work?

Apprenticeships combine on-the- job (at the salon you are employed work at) and off-the-job training (at the LCG Hair & Beauty academy) and you earn whilst you learn.  

This means you’ll be working in a barbering or hairdressing salon where you will learn and practice your barbering skills to develop your competence in barbering.

You will also attend one of our state of the art hairdressing or barbering academies one day per week where you will learn the underpinning knowledge and practical skills to achieve the Diploma for Hair Professionals (Barbering), plus english and maths in a hairdressing context and important skills such as customer service, teamwork and retail skills.

You will gain your practical skills working within our academy salon working on clients and supported by our highly experienced educators and art team.

To achieve a hair professional apprenticeship, students must successfully complete the following:

  • The Diploma for Hair Professionals (Barbering) which is a work based qualification that is designed to ensure the apprentice is job ready

  • Functional Skills qualifications in english and maths

  • Apprentices on the Diploma for Hair Professionals (Barbering) will need to pass maths and English functional skills at level 1 but learners must also take the level 2 functional skills tests (even if they don’t pass them).

  • Learners who have achieved maths and English GCSE at grade A*-C are exempted from functional skills.

Is barbering the right choice for you?

How much does it cost to become a barber?

You don’t pay anything for an apprenticeship as it is funded by the government - and on top of this you will be earning a salary, so you will have no student debt to pay back. You only need to buy the barbering kit you need as appropriate.

Employers might need to make a contribution of 10% per apprentice unless they are small employers taking on 16-18 year olds, or those aged 19-24 who have been in care, or who have a local authority care plan.

Is barbering the right choice for you?

There has been a real growth in the number of barbering salons opening in the high street.

Barbering is a fast moving, image conscious business, so you will need to be very presentable, creative, enjoy meeting people and have plenty of energy. You don’t have to be extremely academic and there is no set entry criteria for the barbering apprenticeship.

We are looking for apprentices that are enthusiastic and motivated and have the willingness and passion to become a barber. You will need to be motivated and hardworking to succeed on the apprenticeship programme.

You will also need to:

  • Be well presented in all aspects including your clothing, hair and personal hygiene

  • Be practical and well organised

  • Be a good communicator with excellent social skills

  • Have a good sense of humour and amicable nature whether dealing face to face with clients or speaking on the telephone

  • Be willing to work flexible hours/days as agreed in the apprenticeship employment contract

  • Have a high degree of dexterity and coordination

  • Be committed to the programme as we demand high standards of attendance, time-keeping and dedication

All Apprentices will be interviewed prior to being offered a place at the Learning Curve Group Hair & Beauty Academy.

For further information about our Academies in Camden, Chiswick, Elstree, Croydon and Loughton please contact us on 020 8953 9344 or email

The Programme

The programme

The Diploma for Hair Professionals (Barbering) programme is a mandatory part of the apprenticeship standards for hair professionals and requires the following 6 units to be completed:

  • Consultation

  • Shampoo, condition and treat the hair and scalp

  • Cutting hair using barbering techniques to create a variety of looks

  • Style and finish men’s hair

  • Cut facial hair into shape

  • Shaving services

Apprentices must also pass the final end-point assessment.

Apprentices will also learn and develop the following skills, knowledge and behaviours which are embedded within the barbering units:

  • Professionalism and values

  • Behaviours and communication

  • Safe working practices

The end-point assessment

The final unit includes a synoptic practical assessment carried out by an independent examiner where the apprentice will demonstrate he/she can complete a range of services on a number of models to industry standards and within commercial timings. The end point assessment will be graded as either a Pass or Distinction.

For further information about our Academies in Camden, Chiswick, Elstree, Croydon and Loughton please contact us on 020 8953 9344 or email


Apprenticeship Wages 

As an Apprentice, you learn on the job and you are an employee.  As an employee, you are entitled to a wage, which means you EARN WHILST YOU LEARN, plus, you won’t be racking up any student debts.  Apprentices are entitled to the apprentice rate which will be £4.30 per hour (as of 1st April 2021), if they’re either:

  • aged under 19

  • aged 19 or over and in the first year of their apprenticeship

Example: An apprentice aged 22 in the first year of their apprenticeship is entitled to a minimum hourly rate of £4.30

Example: An apprentice aged 22 who has completed the first year of their apprenticeship is entitled to a minimum hourly rate of £8.36

If you choose to start a new apprenticeship framework you may remain on the NMW for apprentices.  For further information please visit

National Minimum Wage

The National Minimum Wage (NMW) is the minimum pay per hour most workers are entitled to by law. The rate will depend on a worker's age and if they are an apprentice.

The National Living Wage

The Government's National Living Wage was introduced on 1 April 2016 for all working people aged 23 and over, and from April 2020 it is £8.91. The current National Minimum Wage for those under the age of 25 still applies.

The rates from 1 April 2020 are:

  • £8.91 per hour - 23 yrs old and over 
  • £8.36 per hour - 21-22 yrs old 
  • £6.56 per hour - 18-20 yrs old 
  • £4.62 per hour - 16-17 yrs old 
  • £4.30 for apprentices under 19 or 19 or over who are in the first year of apprenticeship

The rate will then change every April. 


There are a number of people who are not entitled to the NMW/NLW.

  • Self-employed people.

  • Volunteers or voluntary workers.

  • Company directors.

  • Family members, or people who live in the family home of the employer who undertake household tasks.

All other workers including pieceworkers, home workers, agency workers, commission workers, part-time workers and casual workers must receive at least the NMW.

Why choose The Learning Curve Group Hair & Beauty Academy?

Why choose to study at The Learning Curve Group Hair & Beauty Academy?

Our pledge:

  • We offer an apprenticeship programme for barbering professionals which ensures that you meet the required barbering standard and that you will be fully qualified within 15 – 18 months

  • You will be supported by an employer engagement manager throughout the programme with employability skills and with finding a job placement in an approved salon

  • We provide personalised learning with small intimate classes with 2 barbering educator/assessors assigned to each class

  • Learners are encouraged and supported to enter national barbering competitions

  • Training at the LCG Hair & Beauty Academy will take place in one of our state of the art academies, giving real hands on experience with the highest quality technical training provided by our exceptionally skilled educators and our art team

  • You will be provided with high quality learning resources to support your training and achievement including the use of an e-portfolio

  • You will be trained in additional skills to support your role at work that will put you ahead of others and enable you to go that extra mile, such as customer service, communicating effectively with customers, working in a team.

  • You will be allocated a personal mentor to support you through the programme both at the academy and in the salon.  

  • We offer you the opportunity to start the apprenticeship when you are ready, accommodating enrolment throughout the year.

Which areas do we cover?

Which areas do we cover?

We work with barbering salons throughout London, Hertfordshire, Middlesex and Essex. All of our barber shops and salons have been approved by the Learning Curve Group Hair & Beauty Academy.

For further information about our academies in Camden, Chiswick, Elstree, Croydon and Loughton please contact us on 020 8953 9344 or email


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