Hairdressers wash, cut, colour, and style hair. They help customers to decide how they want their hair to look. Hairdressers who specialise in cutting men’s hair are called barbers. Hairdressers often wash the customer’s hair . They may also use various different hair products to colour and style the hair. They also use equipment like scissors, hairdryers, and straighteners.
As a junior hairdresser, you may:
- Welcome customers
- Shampoo and condition hair
- Cut simple styles
- Make sure towels and hair products are well stocked
- Keep the salon clean and tidy
- Make appointments
As a more senior hairdresser, you may:
- Talk to clients about what they want
- Suggest style ideas
- Cut and style hair
- Colour, curl or straighten hair
- Give advice on minor hair and scalp problems
- Take payments
- Order stock and promote products to customers
- Keep up to date with new trends, techniques and hair products
Hairdressers may be employed by lots of different places such as privately-owned hair salons and hairdressing companies that have a number of salons. They may also be employed by beauty salons, health spas, and hotels.
Many hairdressers are self-employed and run their own business or work in salons. Hairdressers spend a lot of time on their feet.
Full-time hairdressers usually work between 35 and 40 hours a week. They may have to work some evenings and weekends. There are often opportunities for part-time work or flexible working hours.
Median salary is £9,849.
Trends as a hairdresser
1.5% decline – leading to: 3,495 fewer jobs by 2027.
Many employers will want you to have some GCSEs or qualifications, especially in Maths and English. It would be useful to study hair and beauty if it is on offer at your local college, if this interests you. Experience is really key in this role. You may be able start work as a trainee hairdresser in a salon and learn on the job. Your employer would expect you to take qualifications part-time, either at a college or in their own training school in hair.
You could also apply for an apprenticeship. If you have an EHCP you may be able to apply under the DfE exemption which allows the apprentice to use Entry Level 3 English and Maths qualifications. The apprentice would have to be competent enough to successfully achieve all other aspects of the apprenticeship requirements, become occupationally competent and achieve Entry Level 3 in English and Maths before the end of their apprenticeship.
College – you could start off on a Level 1 Certificate in Hair and Beauty Skills, or Level 1 Hairdressing Diploma if you have no formal qualifications.