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Getting in

Are you  friendly and good at talking to people?  

Do you have good hand eye co-ordination, and practical skills? 

Are you fit and can stand up all day long? 

Are you interested in fashion trends and working with hair? 

If so hairdressing could be for you?

Key Facts 

  • There are over 40,000 hair salons in the UK, employing over 200 000 people, with a turnover of more than £4.8 billion.
  •  93% of businesses are small employing less than 10 people and over half of all hairdressers are self employed.  
  • As a qualified hairdresser you could be working in a salon, barbers, hotel, cruise ship or working as a mobile hairdresser visiting people at home. 
  • Hairdressing remains one of the most popular apprenticeship choices for young people. However, there are still skills shortages and lots of jobs available to train to be a hairdresser.
  • In rural areas of the South West many hairdressing trainees choose to become mobile hairdressers, travelling to their customers in outlying towns and villages.

Routes into this sector

  • GCSEs in English and maths would be useful for a career in hairdressing.
  • At 16 you have two main options.The first is to do a vocational course at college and the second is to an apprenticeship.
  • At 18 or 19 you could do an apprenticeship in hairdressing - these are offered by national companies such as Toni and Guy and smaller salons.

 In hairdressing it is important to keep up with the latest trends, through further training. You will also have to combine your creative flair with customer service skills and business knowledge. 

Self-employment is quite normal in this sector and many people also learn how to run their own business. Routes into hairdressing and barbering are mostly through work-based apprenticeships in salons, where on the job training is offered alongside study at college. 

You can also choose to specialise in different areas such as hair colouring, bridal hair-dos or hair effects such as extensions.

You could supplement hairdressing with media makeup training to enable you to go into careers in media make up or fashion hair and makeup.

Use the Course Search

Use the relevant search options on our Course Search to find college and university courses as well as vacancies for apprenticeships.

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