Individuals interested in becoming a Registered Barber, a Master Haircare Specialist or a Barber Instructor by Examination will take a two part examination for licensure in South Carolina (theory and practical).
The examination is administered by PSI and they can be reached at 855-746-8173 or you may visit www.psiexams.com for more information and a candidate handbook.
Applicants must obtain a passing score of 70% on the NIC Barbering Examination (theory and practical). Applicants must obtain a passing score of 75% on the NIC Barber Instructor Examination (theory and practical).
Individuals interested in becoming a hair braider must pass an online safety and sanitation exam and if interested in becoming a barber assistant the examinations are provided online by the Board. The passing score is 70% for both.
Registered Barber and Master Haircare Specialist - Prior to application submission with the testing service provider, barber applicants must: 1. Complete 1920 hours of on-the-job training under a licensed barber instructor in a licensed barbershop or 2. Complete 1500 hours in an approved barber college/school.
Barber Instructors - Applicants must possess three (3) years of experience as a registered barber or a master haircare specialist prior to sitting for the exam (theory and practical).
Hair braider applicants must submit the Hair Braider application, supporting documents (listed on the application), and the appropriate fee in the form of a check or money order. A user ID and password will be provider so that applicants can review the 6-hour training course and then take the hair braiding safety and sanitation exam.
Barber Assistant students must earn 240 hours of training in shampooing AND manicures. Upon graduation, applicants must submit an application, supporting documents (listed on the application), and the appropriate fee in the form of a check or money order. A user ID and password will be provided so that applicants can take the online exam.
Barber candidates (registered barber and master haircare specialists) pay examination fees to LLR and to PSI. You select exam dates on the PSI website after you have received approval from LLR to test.
Barber study materials can be found within the PSI candidate information bulletin at www.psiexams.com and references can be found at https://nictesting.org/candidate-information-bulletins/, they include but are not limited to the following:
Pivot Point Fundamentals: Barbering, (101B – 113B); ©2018 Pivot Point International, Inc. 1st Edition, 1st Printing, March 2018 ISBN 978-1-940593-96-8 Pivot Point International, Inc. www.pivot-point.com Contact: Debbie Mack email@example.com 800-886-4247, Ext. 7368
Milady’s Standard Professional Barbering 2017, 6th Edition www.miladypro.com Customer Service: firstname.lastname@example.org 800.998.7498 ext. 2700
SUPPLEMENTAL REFERENCES Milady’s Standard Professional Barbering 2011, 5th Edition Milady www.miladypro.com Customer Service: email@example.com 800.998.7498 ext. 2700
Question: How do I become a barber?
Answer: If you are not a barber in another state or country, you have two pathways towards licensure. 1. Complete 1920 hours of on-the-job training under a licensed barber instructor in a licensed barbershop or 2. Complete 1500 hours in an approved barber college/school.
Question: After completing the required hours, what’s my next step?
Answer: Ensure that you have received a training affidavit (transcript) from your barber instructor or barber school. Then submit an exam application to the Board's office for approval to test. Once approved, you may contact PSI to pay for the exam and select a test date.
Question: Do my barber hours ever expire?
Answer: Currently there's no expiration date on barber hours. However, it may be beneficial to refresh yourself on the current barbering and sanitation practices.
Question: How can I study for the barber or instructor examination?
Answer: Visit the testing service provider's website at www.psiexams.com and you can find practice tests at www.nictesting.org.
Question: I’m a barber instructor, where can I find the training affidavit?
Answer: The affidavit is on the board's website, under Apply For A License. Make sure you click on the correct affidavit.
Question: How many hours can I transfer from a barber college to on-the-job training or vice versa?
Answer: The instructor or school will determine how many hours will transfer for training.
Question: How many student permits can I obtain?
Answer: Three, the Board will not issue a fourth (4th) permit.
Question: Can I become licensed as a barber in South Carolina if I am licensed as a barber in another state?
Answer: If you meet the requirements for endorsement/reciprocity, you would be eligible. If not, you will be required to pass the NIC examination (theory and practical) because South Carolina doesn't have a grandfather provision.
Question: Will South Carolina accept my apprentice barber license from another state?
Answer: No, South Carolina does not accept apprentice hours.
Question: If I’m a licensed barber assistant (manicurist or shampooer), do I have to work under a licensed barber?
Answer: Yes, you must be supervised by a licensed barber in a barbershop.
Question: Can I work in a cosmetology salon with a barber assistant license?
Answer: No, you have to work in a licensed barbershop under a registered barber, master hair care specialist or barber instructor.
Question: Who do I make my money order or check payable to?
Answer: SC Board of Barber Examiners (do not send cash in the mail).
Question: I received a letter from requesting me to provide a SLED report/criminal background report, but who should I contact and how do I obtain the information?
Answer: If violations happened in South Carolina, you must contact the State Law Enforcement Division (SLED). If violations happened outside of South Carolina, you must contact the state or local agency for a criminal background report. In addition, you must supply court documents with final dispositions for all charges.
SLED Headquarters is located at:
4400 Broad River Road
Columbia, SC 29210
The public may reach SLED by calling (803) 737-9000 or send correspondence to their mailing address at: Post Office Box 21398, Columbia, SC 29221.
Question: How do I apply for a barbershop license?
Answer: Visit the South Carolina Board of Barber Examines website at: http://www.llr.sc.gov/bar.
Once on the website, select the APPLY FOR A LICENSE for the Barbershop Application. Submit the complete application twenty (20) days before you plan to open. An inspector will contact you to conduct an inspection of your new barbershop. Once you pass inspection, you can open for business.
Question: I have changed the location of my barbershop; I am the new owner of an existing barbershop; I want to change the name of my barbershop- what do I need to do?
Answer: Any time there is a change whether in location, ownership or name of the business, the owner must submit a new barbershop application and fee. In most cases, an inspection must take place prior to operating the business. The license is not transferrable.
Question: How do I contact the testing service provider?
Answer: Call toll free 888-822-8232 or visit www.pcshq.com.
Question: How many years can my register barber and master hair care specialist license be lapsed?
Answer: You have 3 years to reinstate the license before you have to pass the examination again.
Question: How many years can my barber instructor license be lapsed?
Answer: You have 5 years to reinstate the license before you have to pass the examination again.