Hair Braiding & Natural Hairstyling Schools by State

Finding a cosmetology specialty you’re passionate about is one of the quickest ways to start a career that doesn’t even feel like work. When you’re excited about the possibilities in your career and the services you can provide to clients, you wake up every day ready to hit the salon. Hair braiding is a cultural practice that’s been around for hundreds of years, and it’s made its way to salons all over the United States.

Is it a good fit for you? If you want to work in flexible settings, explore your creativity at work, and be part of a strong beauty community, use the 1000+ school listings at to get more information on hair braiding programs.

Become a Hair Braider and Create Unique Natural Hairstyles

Hair braiding is a traditionally African art, but it’s quickly becoming popular with many groups and populations. As more people see the beauty and diverse options in braiding, the need for hair braiders may increase in your area. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, demand for beauty professionals may swell 10% by the year 2024 (2016). They report an average salary of $11.38 per hour for cosmetology professionals, although hair braiders may have their income supplemented by tips (BLS, 2016). Whether hair braiding is a huge trend in your city or it hasn’t reached your community yet, why not become part of this field now?

African Hair Braiding License Requirement

In many cosmetology fields, licensing requirements are similar across states. Hair braiding, as a new specialty, doesn’t follow this rule. Licensing requirements range from no license at all to full cosmetology license requirements. In the middle are braiding-specific licenses, which generally take much less time than cosmetology programs and focus only on hair braiding. These laws aren’t set in stone—more and more states are deregulating hair braiding or reducing license requirements. Iowa is one of the latest states to remove the cosmetology license requirement from its laws (WQAD, 2016).

Braiding Hair Program Curriculum

If you can finish your training at a program dedicated to braiding, you can look forward to learning many new braid hairstyles! Instructors may show you how to use and clean important braiding equipment, including thread, yarn, and combs. Some of the braiding techniques you may tackle are twist braids, knots, multiple strand braids, hair locking, and cornrow braids. Depending on the state you live in, you may learn how to work with hair extensions and artificial hair. Upkeep and braid removal are also taught.

With a braiding education, you may offer your services at local salons or open up a braiding shop that lets you set your own hours. Make your move—find your state below and contact hair braiding schools.