Pennsylvania is a great place to be a man! If the art of the barbershop is interesting and inviting to you, Pennsylvania is also home to some of the country’s best-trained barbers, thanks to its great schools and thorough training.

If you’re looking for the right place to become a barber, Pennsylvania might just be the place to start.

pittsburgh skyline
PIttsburgh, PA skyline from Mt. Washington. Photo by Filipe Fortes [CC BY-SA 2.0]

How Long Does Barber Training Take in Pennsylvania?

To qualify to be a barber you will need to be at least 16 years old and have completed at least an 8th-grade education. Your program will be at least 1250 hours long, whether you choose a formal institution or an apprenticeship at a licensed barbershop. While you are at school, you will learn both theoretical and practical knowledge of hygiene, bacteriology, massages, hair coloring, use of barber equipment, and more.

PA Barber’s License

Once you’ve completed your education or apprenticeship hours and provided proof of age, you can apply for your exams to the testing vendor.

The same application will act as your licensing application in the event that you pass. Your first exam is a practical skills examination involving a kit and live model. The second is your theory examination, a written exam covering everything you have learned, plus rules, regulations, and safety.

List of Some Barber Schools in Pennsylvania

Martin’s Barber School – 10722 Fairgrounds Road, Huntingdon, PA 16652

World A Cuts Barber Institute – 121 North George Street, York, PA 17401

Barber School of Pittsburgh – 143 Steuben Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15220

Woolf Doctors Barber Science – 2626 Derry Street, Harrisburg, PA 17111

Champ’s Barber School – 54 & 56 West King Street, Lancaster, PA 17603

Lehigh Valley Barber School – 1517 Irene Street, Bethlehem, PA 18017

Premier Barber Institute – 573 East Main Street, Norristown, PA 19401

Barber Styling Institute – 3433 Simpson Ferry Road, Camp Hill, PA 17011

Barber School of N.E.P.A. – 535 Wyoming Avenue, Scranton, PA 18509

Charlie G Haynes Barber School – 436 West Oley Street, Reading, PA 19601

American Barber Academy – American Barber Academy, 110 Morgantown Road, Reading, PA 19611 – ABA is close to downtown Reading for easy access, but it doesn’t skimp on floor space or quality of facilities due to it’s good location. It’s a 2,000+ square foot school that houses a full service clinic as well for lots of relevant experience before you strike out on your own. ABA is fully accredited so that you can apply for federal financial aid, and also now accepts Veterans Affairs Benefits — also due to federal accreditation.

Already Licensed But From Out-Of-State?

If you hold a barbering license from another state, there are two ways to transfer it to Pennsylvania. You can choose to apply for and sit the Pennsylvania license exams, or submit proof of your original license along with a reciprocity application, and the application fee.

Renew Your License

Your barber license expires every other year. And don’t worry because you will receive notification that your license is due before it expires.

You need to fill out your license renewal form, along with the required fee.

Pennsylvania doesn’t ask you do extra training hours to maintain your license but making yourself available to trade shows, and specialized training will help your career grow, and your clients come to rely on you!

Barber Jobs in PA

Speaking of clients, where do you go to find yours?

Trained barbers may work in beauty salons, existing shops, or open their own. Urban centers like Philadelphia and Pittsburgh are full of great barbershops that offer a mix of multicultural flair, both traditional and modern.

If you’re interested in opening your own shop, you should be aware that the department of labor and industry estimates that there will be an increase of about 500 new barber jobs by 2021.

That means you’ll have plenty of well-trained colleagues to count on when you’re ready to open the next best barbershop in town! For now, check out for information on the job.

Other PA schools for cosmetologists, estheticians, nail techs and makeup artists.

Did we miss any barber schools in PA? Please contact us to let us know.