TAFE NSW barbering courses overview

TAFE NSW is supporting the barbering industry through a wide range of training pathways, from short courses in specific barbering techniques, to apprenticeships, and salon management to skill a job-ready workforce. 

The courses are delivered in real-world simulated work environments, by teachers who are experienced barbers with the industry connections and knowledge students need to reach their career goals.

Meet TAFE NSW Teacher – Rocco

Rocco – TAFE NSW Teacher

As a second-generation barber with over 17 years of experience, TAFE NSW Teacher Rocco says she has seen firsthand the evolution of the barbering industry in Australia.

“We’ve come a long way from traditional straight or taper cuts. New tools of the trade and changing customer needs have shaped a growing skills demand in the latest equipment and techniques,” said Rocco.

“At TAFE NSW, we offer traditional and modern barbers training options to upskill to a formal qualification and short courses to grow their business and provide additional services in beauty, massage, and responsible service of alcohol.

“Barbershop managers can study a Diploma in Salon Management at home, attending weekly virtual sessions to gain industry-specific skills to manage staff performance, market their business, and make strategic business decisions.   

“We’re also partnering with industry to make the transition from school to work easier, creating career pathways for school students to continue their training as apprentices after year 12, helping build the next generation of barbers.” 

Barbering Training Pathways

From Apprentice to Barber – Vick Daniel

Vick Daniel

The nationally accredited Certificate III in Barbering is designed for aspiring barbers who want to learn the art of fading, carving, and cutting hair in the thriving men’s grooming industry. Students practice skills on real clients in fully equipped barbershops and real salons.

The Certificate III in Barbering is a fully government-subsidised JobTrainer course for those who meet the eligibility criteria.

CASE STUDY: After working as a taxi driver for ten years, Vick Daniel decided to shave his way to a career change and opened his business, Clippers N’ Whisky Barbershop in 2020 in Sydney.

Vick completed the Certificate III in Barbering at TAFE NSW Ultimo and now enjoys using his people-skills from taxi driving when cutting hair for his clients.

“I love being able to channel my creativity when cutting hair, I think the best part of my job is watching someone walk out of the shop with a spring in their step because of their new look,” Vick said.

Vick said a lot of people cut hair for their friends and family at home, and formal training through TAFE NSW offered a good start for those hoping to enter the industry.

“Formal training is extremely important, you need those basic skills,” Vick said.

“There is so much more to barbering than cutting hair, from holding clippers correctly to hygiene standards, being qualified is what keeps the industry reputable and safe.”

Established barbers making their experience count – Uptown Barbers

Tony Rostami and Omid Abdolahi – co-owners of Uptown Barbers

For some self-taught barbers, studying is a major commitment, which is why TAFE NSW offers a ‘recognition’ pathway to fast-track getting qualified.

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) involves an assessment of previous skills, knowledge, and experience and how they may meet the requirements of your qualification. It means if you can demonstrate you already have the skills and experience you can reduce the amount of time you need to study and get your qualification faster.

 Obtaining recognition also means once you get started in your study, you will only be building new skills, rather than repeating old ones.

CASE STUDY: Tony Rostami and Omid Abdolahi are the co-owners of Uptown Barbers – a traditional male grooming business with two locations in Sydney’s CBD.

Tony and Omid have been barbering for 9 years and turned to TAFE NSW to get their Certificate III in Barbering trade qualification.

“Although we have a lot of existing skills and experience, our TAFE NSW training gave us exposure to new techniques such as cutting and blow-drying long hair,” Mr Rostami said.

“The apprentices we hire all study at TAFE NSW, for people entering the industry, TAFE teaches you important knowledge such as the discipline of keeping your tools and area tidy.”

To learn more about the range of barbering, hair, and beauty courses at TAFE NSW visit www.tafensw.edu.au or call 13 16 01.