How To Become A Professional Hairdresser

Joanna Hairdressing

Whether you fancy yourself as the next Nicky Clarke, want to set up your own salon, or pursue a career as a mobile professional hairdresser, there are a huge range of fantastic opportunities available for those with a creative flair for hair!

Take a look at our extensive guide below to learn more about this timeless profession and how you can map out your own road to success.



What Does A Professional Hairdresser Do?

Although the answer might seem obvious, the modern day hairdresser needs to take on a range of tasks in order to keep the business running smoothly and your customers satisfied. You’ll need to work with your clients to understand exactly what they’re after, visualising the final look and delivering it to an impeccable standard.

As well as basic cutting and blowdrying, you may need to provide shampoo, dying and highlighting services whilst helping your customers to feel relaxed and comfortable.

Yet the responsibilities of a hairdresser are more than just being able to snip and style a great look for your client. You’ll also be responsible for keeping your working environment, scissors, razors and other equipment sanitised as making sure that supplies are stocked and ready for use.

Why Consider A Career As A Hairdresser?

Working as a professional hairdresser can be a highly rewarding career path to undertake. It offers an excellent, hands on outlet for creative individuals to express themselves whilst the career prospects can range from hiring a chair at an existing salon to opening your own chain across the country and the wider world.

You’ll work with a wide variety of people day in, day out, and no two days are ever likely to be the same with each customer bringing a unique set of requirements and personality to your chair.

By delivering fantastic service and a great cut, you’ll enjoy building long term relationships with your clientele, learning their needs along the way and adapting your techniques accordingly.

What’s more is that you’ll be able to build your knowledge of business as well as the technical side to cutting hair. No matter how big or small your operation may be, you’ll learn to carefully manage business budgets, how to market yourself in order to grow your customer base, and develop your interpersonal skills by communicating with so many different people.

What Do You Need To Succeed?

First and foremost, you’ll need to be passionate about the fashion industry coupled with a natural, creative flair for style. To become a true success, you’ll need to couple these tools with excellent customer service and communication skills in order to help customers of all ages feel relaxed and comfortable in your presence.

Interpersonal skills are amongst the most important required within this industry. Some customers will expect lots of friendly chat whilst others prefer to relax and enjoy a quiet cut. Equally, there are many children who may be apprehensive about visiting a hairdresser, possibly for the first time, so you’ll need to be adaptable enough to overcome anxieties as and when they arise.

Whether working alone or as part of a team, you’ll need to ensure that your tools and equipment are kept in good working order, as well as retaining a strong eye for detail when it comes to cleanliness and sanitisation.

Finally, a successful professional hairdresser will always keep abreast of the latest trends in order to continue providing the latest, most sought after styles as the fashion industry evolves over time. Attending regular training courses and seminars can help you to learn the new skills required to provide these to your expectant customers.

Studying In Order To Have A Successful Career As A Hairdresser

course searchWhilst there are no formal educative requirements needed to start out as a hairdresser, it’s highly advantageous to undertake some form of training before embarking on this career. A range of NVQs, seminars and other courses are available across the UK to help you get started, although apprenticeships have also proved popular amongst those who are happy to learn as they go.

As a junior/entry level hairdresser with no experience, your role will initially be made up of much simpler tasks such as shampooing, sweeping, taking payments and very basic cuts, so they’ll be no immediate pressure on you to deliver a glamorous style straight away!

Depending on your personal career ambitions, you may find that you’ll benefit greatly from business management, communication and finance courses which can help you to retain clients whilst improving the efficiency and profitability of your business.

Career Progression and Salaries

Your career progression and salary expectations will depend on a range of factors, including your experience, location, style/specialist skills, and client base. The following career roadmap should help you to get a rough idea as to what you can expect:

Entry level hairdresser (0 years experience) – £14,000

Experienced hairdresser (2-5 years experience) – £18,000 – £24,000

Highly experienced hairdresser (5 – 10+ years) – £24,000 – £30,000

Celebrity/high end fashion hairdresser – £70,000+

Salon owner – £40,000 – £80,000+

In Closing

Becoming a professional hairdresser can be a great outlet for the creative minded with plenty of room for progression. Take a look through the available training courses at Courses Dojo to give yourself the best possible chance of succeeding in this sphere whilst developing a wide range of customer service and business skills in the process.

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