As a cosmetologist who crosses over to barbering, I recommend getting licensed for both. Cosmetology gave me the fundamentals of hair cutting and shear work. I am confident in my color skills and can do amazing blow outs. Barbering put my skills to work by learning clipper cuts, straight razor shaves, and understanding shapes in a whole new way.
If you’re unsure about whether you want to do long hair, short hair, color, or cuts, I recommend starting in cosmetology and finding what you’re good at and what comes most naturally to you.
When I was in cosmetology, I disliked cutting men’s hair because it did not come naturally to me. I felt it was hard, and I was not good at it, so I tried my best to avoid men’s haircuts. But I did not want to be afraid of cutting short hair, so I decided to study barbering. I want to be a good hairstylist and, to me, you can never have enough education in this industry. New trends evolve every day and you are never going to stop learning outside of school.
Now that I understand short hair, I love it. I’m so glad I will be a dual-licensed hairdresser. I don’t think cosmetology is better than barbering or barbering is better than cosmetology. It’s a personal choice, but for me, having the knowledge of both, and the licenses for both, was a good decision.