What is a Hairdresser?

A hairdresser is someone who specializes in cutting, coloring, and styling hair. Besides the general maintenance of hair, these hair care professionals can offer advice on hair problems, maintenance, and management, as well as bleaching and straightening treatments. Hairdressers often focus on specific groups of people, such as those who work solely with children or elders. Hairdressers can work for hair salons, spas, hotels and resorts, or department stores. They may also be self-employed by running their own hair salon out of the home.

Educational Requirements

To become a hairdresser, minimal education is required. Instead, hairdressers must rely on their experience that has been acquired through hands-on training. To attain training, programs are offered through vocational schools and private academies and last for approximately one year or less. Practical experience is obtained through this training, such as cutting and coloring hair, as well as health and safety procedures. Once completed, hairdressers must complete the State Board Exam that consists of a written portion and practical portion. Some states also require that hairdressers pass an oral examination.

Skills Necessary

The work of a hairdresser is highly demanding, which is why hairdressers should be organized and able to work in fast-paced settings. Since this career works closely with customers, hairdressers should be friendly, personable and understanding, as well as detail-orientated and have strong interpersonal skills. Stamina and endurance are also important, as hairdressers work long days and are on their feet for hours at a time.

Job and Career Outlook

The median salary for a hairdresser is $18,960, although this varies on the type of salon, geographic location, and level of experience. The rate of employment for hair dressers is expected to grow steadily, as people are always in need of hair care and maintenance. Demand for work often lies in the salons that hairdressers work for, as reputable shops in metropolitan areas are the highest paid and receive the most traffic.

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