Qualified and experienced hairdressers/barbers in demand
Demand for hairdressers and barbers is increasing, as clients want extra services such as special hairstyles, colouring and hot-towel shaves.
Although there are nearly 12,000 hairdressers, barbers and beauty therapists, there are not enough to meet demand and employers report difficulty finding skilled hairdressers.
According to the Census, 10,488 hairdressers/barbers worked in New Zealand in 2018.
Beards and short hair trends drive demand for barbers
Barbers are also in demand due to:
- the popularity of beards and short haircuts for men
- the preference of many men to attend a barber rather than a hairdresser
- the demand for barbers' services from migrants and tourists from countries where barbering is common.
High competition for apprenticeships
Chances of finding work as a hairdresser/barber apprentice are average. There is good demand from employers for apprentices, but there are many applicants for each position.
Experience and direct approach increase your chances
Useful experience to show employers you are keen and also have a realistic idea of the role includes:
- the Gateway programme for hairdressing/barbering
- work experience at hair salons
- study at a hairdressing/barbering school
- customer service experience, either paid or voluntary.
Few hairdresser/barber apprenticeships are advertised, so it is useful to contact salons or the New Zealand Hair and Beauty Industry Training Organisation (HITO) directly about apprenticeships.
Types of employers varied
Hairdressers/barbers may work for:
- hair salons and barber shops
- beauty spas and health clubs
- large department stores
- luxury hotels and cruise ships
- nursing homes.
Hairdressers/barbers can be self-employed, run their own salons, or hire a chair in an existing salon.