January 8, 2020

How to Get a Dual Barbering/Cosmetology License

licensed barber and cosmetologist

Barbering or cosmetology? Unsure of which profession to pursue? Why choose one when you can have both?

You may not know this, but it is possible to hold dual licenses for both barbering and cosmetology. Once you’ve earned one license, it won’t take long to earn the other and you’ll be able to perform services for both men and women, so you’ll have a competitive edge in the industry.

The Benefits of Dual Licenses

Through dual licenses, you get the best of both worlds—the skills of a barber and a cosmetologist. Each profession requires a unique set of skills that you’ll only be trained for during one course. For example, barbers will learn the art of shaving, but cosmetologists will not. On the other hand, cosmetologists will learn how to wax and give manicures and barbers will not. With both licenses, you’ll learn all of these skills and reap the following benefits:

  • Versatility—With both sets of skills, you can choose to work in a traditional hair salon or a barbershop, or you can hop from one to the other. You won’t have to worry about being pigeonholed in your career.
  • Marketability—Unless you are ridiculously overqualified for a job, no employer will reject you for having too many skills or too much knowledge. The arts of barbering and cosmetology are in demand right now, so dual licenses are appealing to employers.
  • Boost in Revenue—Some states don’t allow cosmetologists to use a straight razor, but barbers can. With both licenses, you can offer more services. The more services you can provide, the more clients you can attract, which could help you boost your revenue.

How to Obtain Dual Licenses in Barbering and Cosmetology

Step 1: Complete your First License

Which is your first love, cosmetology or barbering? Pick the skill set you want to learn first and work toward and obtain either your cosmetology or barbering license.

Step 2: Enroll in a Crossover Program

Once you’ve earned your first license, it’s time to go back to school again. You’re probably thinking “Ugh, I have to go through a program all over again?” Yes and no.

This time, you’ll enroll in a crossover course, either from barbering to cosmetology or vice versa. A crossover program is much shorter. For example, at Salon Success Academy, if you are a licensed cosmetologist, you can transfer existing cosmetology hours toward the 1200 required hours for your barbering program. The idea is that you only need to learn the skills you didn’t learn the first time around, like shaving techniques and men’s hair styling.

Once you successfully complete the crossover course, you’ll be ready to sit for your second licensing exam.


If you’re ready to get started, you can enroll in the barbering or cosmetology program at Salon Success Academy. Our team of professionals can help you kickstart your career in one or both fields. Which one is right for you?


Comments are closed.