Barber holding shears

January 9, 2023

How to Get Your Barbering License in Idaho

Are you looking for a fresh start, a career change, or a future in something you love? Consider becoming a barber! If you want a future career filled with freedom and flexibility to express yourself, you’re at the right place! Barbering is a creative, innovative field and is filled with opportunities to impact people’s lives for the better. Becoming a licensed barber requires a lot of steps, so we’re going to walk you through them!

Every state has its own requirements for what it takes to get a barbering license, so we’re going to review what they are in Idaho!

Meet The Educational Requirements

Idaho has two different types of barbers: barbers and barber-stylists. The difference between a barber and a barber-stylist is that barber-stylists are able to perform additional services that a barber can’t. This can be services like hair coloring, bleaching and other common cosmetology techniques.

To become a barber, you must complete a 900-hour barber training program. To become a barber-stylist, you need to complete at least 1,800 hours of training.

In this blog, we’re going over what it takes to become a barber!

About Our Barbering Program

At Aveda Idaho, our barbering program is 900 hours and takes most students less than a year to finish. Our program is designed with our students in mind and was created to help students become licensed barbers. Our curriculum covers the techniques of cutting hair, the knowledge needed for the exams, and it also covers business topics. In this program, you can expect to learn:

  • Styling
  • Foundational cuts
  • Tapered cuts
  • Fades
  • Shaving
  • Beard design
  • Skin care
  • Men’s grooming
  • State rules and regulations
  • And more!

Pass The Exams

The exams consist of two parts: the National NIC Barber 1 Written Exam and the National NIC Barber 1 Practical Exam. Students must pass both exams with at least a 75%.

Written Exam

This test is offered in a multiple-choice format and involves 60 questions, of which 50 are weighted and contribute to the final score. Candidates will have 90 minutes to complete the exam. It is divided into these sections:

  • Scientific concepts (40%)
  • Implements and equipment (10%)
  • Hair care services (30%)
  • Facial hair and skin care services (20%)

Practical Exam

Candidates must bring one mannequin head for this exam and a table clamp. The duration of this exam is approximately 3 hours and consists of the following sections:

  • Work area and client preparation, and set up of supplies (10 minutes)
  • Haircutting (40 minutes)
  • Work area and new client preparation, and set up of supplies (15 minutes)
  • Shaving with a straight razor (variable timing)
  • Blood exposure procedure (10 minutes)

Apply For Your License

You can apply for your license here. As long as you are 16 years old, have graduated from an approved barbers program, and have passed the licensing exams, you can submit an application for your license. Once you get your license, you can start practicing in your career!

Begin Your Career

As a licensed barber, you can now look for jobs at local barber shops, salons, or you can even start your own barbershop. There’s lots of benefits of working in this industry, like:

  • Expressing your creativity
  • Making people happy
  • Choosing your own schedule
  • Socializing with people
  • A sense of pride in your work
  • And much more!

Many people who go into barbering find that it is a highly rewarding career and it’s a career they are passionate about.

Renew Your License

You can complete your renewal application and pay fees through the online renewal system. To keep your license valid, it must be renewed by the expiration date each year. License renewal reminders are sent out to your mailing address about 6 weeks before it expires. However, you are responsible to renew your license in a timely manner whether you receive a renewal notice or not.

Ready To Start Your Career As A Barber?

If you’re ready to start your career as a barber, we’re here to help! If you have any questions regarding your education, don’t hesitate to contact us. At Aveda Idaho, we understand what it’s like to want to tap into your creative side and do what you love. We can’t wait to see you and help you achieve your goals!


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Now's the perfect time to pursue a career in cosmetology, esthetics or barbering. We'll even help you find a job after you graduate! We offer financial aid to those who qualify and our schedule allows you to have the perfect school/life balance.

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Our barbering program is designed to teach students fades, shaves, skin care and more.

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