The average cost of a haircut ranges from $20 to $90, according to pricing data from our stylists. But as most of us know, haircutting prices vary and can reach much higher or lower than these averages. So, how much is a haircut supposed to cost?
Factors like your stylist’s experience and your location can influence prices. For example, a cut from an experienced hairstylist in New York City will probably cost more than a cut from a student barber in Savannah, GA.
Even so, it’s not easy to know whether or not you’re overpaying for a haircut. We pulled pricing data for each state along with some tips to help you make your best decision when booking your next haircut.
Men’s haircut prices for each state
Men’s cuts are generally cheaper than women’s cuts. Delaware is home to the most expensive cuts at $42 while West Virginia sees an average of $15. Although men’s haircuts are cheaper, we’ve seen that clients book these appointments more frequently compared to women’s cuts. This is no surprise since you need more frequent haircuts to maintain a shorter length.
Below is the average cost of men’s haircut appointments in each state.
Women’s haircut prices for each state
Women’s haircuts tend to cost more than men’s haircuts since hair is typically longer and requires a longer appointment time. Women’s haircuts in California are $93 on average while Wyoming cuts are $17.
Below is the average cost of women’s haircut appointments in each state.
|State||Average cost per appointment|
Why are haircuts so expensive?
Haircut costs take lots of factors into account, including things like experience, rent, and tools. Generally speaking, a person with really long hair who wants an asymmetrical bob with bangs can expect to pay much more than a person with shoulder-length hair who just wants a trim.
Below are a few common things that can determine your haircut’s final price, along with expenses stylists need to cover:
- Experience, like years in the industry and any special training
- Rent and utilities can impact cost depending on the arrangement with the salon and the stylist
- Location factors like cost of living and competition in your area
- Popularity, especially if your stylist is consistently booked out
- Required licensing and insurance costs that can vary based on location
- Hair length, since it adds to your appointment time
- Complexity of the final look you want along with the skill needed to execute it
- Tools and supplies along with the maintenance and sanitation of each
- Additional services like shampoo and more complex styling
This isn’t an exhaustive list and not every hairstylist uses these factors to set prices. The most important thing to remember is that the price covers a lot more than what we think. Even seemingly simple cuts, like trims or bangs, are not as simple to do as you might think. You’re also still paying for your stylist’s time and expertise with these services.
Are there instances when stylists have unreasonable charges?
Unfortunately, there are some instances where a salon may charge extra based on your hair texture. A common excuse is that some hair types use more products or take more time to work with than other types.
If someone is trying to charge you extra for a “textured hair fee” or for other reasons that seem a little off, don’t be afraid to ask questions, elevate the situation to a manager, or walk away. Stylists who charge extra may also have little experience working with different hair types.
The best way to avoid this scenario is to find a stylist or barber who has good reviews and experience working with your hair type. Luckily, there are increasingly more stylists who are learning how to work with different types of hair. There are also salons that specialize in natural hair.
In addition to discriminatory fees, others may hike up their price because of the perceived value they give with their full experience. This can include anything from free drinks to thorough consultation times. It’s up to you to decide whether the extra cost and perks align with your hair goals and what you value the most from your appointments.
We’ll cover some more tips later on to make sure you’re getting the most value from your cut.
How much should I tip for a haircut?
You should leave a 10 to 20 percent tip for a haircut and 15 to 25 percent when tipping a barber. Giving your stylist or barber a tip is the best way to show your gratitude and build a relationship with them.
There’s also a good chance that the price you’re paying for the cut isn’t fully going back to them. The salon could collect a portion of the sale or the stylist may only get paid an hourly wage.
If you want to directly support your stylist, leave them a good tip and a review. On the other hand, you can leave them a smaller tip if you weren’t satisfied with your service.
How can I get the best value for my haircut?
You can get the best value for your haircut by doing your research on stylists, deals, and pricing ahead of time, along with making the most of the appointment itself. This extra prep and research should help ensure you leave with a haircut that makes you look and feel your best.
Find the right stylist
Doing your research can both save you the heartache of getting a bad haircut and save you the money you would spend to fix it later. Read reviews, check out portfolios, and ask around for recommendations to make sure your stylist or barber can help you get the look you want.
Keep an eye out for deals
Check your stylist’s review profile or social accounts to see if they’re offering any promotions or special packages. You may get a better deal if you get your haircut and colored with the same hairstylist. Some may also offer special promotions for holidays, special occasions, or off-peak hours.
Opt for gender-neutral pricing
You can potentially save some money on haircuts if you find a stylist who uses gender-neutral pricing. These types of salons focus more on the time and technique required for your hair length, regardless of your gender identity.
Seek recommendations during the consultation
A great stylist will have a consultation with you before starting on your haircut. This is your chance to talk about what you want and to get your stylist’s opinion. They’ll sometimes push back if you ask for a look that won’t flatter you or will be tough to maintain with your lifestyle. However, they shouldn’t pressure you into a style or a pricier cut you don’t want.
Bring inspiration photos
Barber terms and hair lingo don’t come easily to all of us. Instead, use photos of people with similar hair textures and face shapes to communicate your dream look to your stylist. This helps them understand what you want and gives them the opportunity to make suggestions.
Confirm the price before your appointment starts
No one likes getting caught off guard with the final price, especially if it puts you over your budget. Ask your stylist or barber beforehand about the price so you can ask questions or find another place that fits your budget, if necessary.
Ask questions during your appointment
Your appointment is the best time to get styling and hair care tips from your stylist. Since you’re already spending an hour or so with them, take the time to ask how they’re styling your hair and what products they recommend.
A good haircut is worth the price if you can get a look you love. It can also save you some time if the style looks good after it’s grown out. Now that you know how much a haircut is in your area, what goes into the cost, and how to get the most out of your appointment, you’re ready to take the next step.
Check out our directory of hairstylists and barbers to find someone who works best for your hair goals and your budget.