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2021 Best Value Cosmetology Basic Certificate Schools

Identifying Quality Schools at More Affordable Prices

631 Colleges
$5,693 Avg Tuition & Fees*

Finding the Best Cosmetology Basic Certificate School for You

In 2018-2019, 103,674 degrees and certificates were awarded to cosmetology students, making the major the most popular in the country.

With all the trade school programs available today, it can be tough to choose which one is the best for you. You're no longer limited to schools in your local area, either, since online programs are becoming more prevalent.

Along with in-depth profiles of schools and the programs they offer, Trade College Search has created the Best Value Cosmetology Basic Certificate Schools to help you in your search for the best school for you. Our analysis looked at 631 schools in the United States to see which basic certificate programs offered the best value experiences for cosmetology students with the aim of identifying those quality schools that are more affordable than some of their counterparts.

This ranking is not just a list of inexpensive schools. We also consider each school's quality, since we believe a low-quality school may not be a 'bargain' at any price. More specifically, we discount our quality score by the published tuition and fees charged by a school. This gives the cost per unit of quality for each college. The value is determined by how much quality your dollar buys.

For nationwide and regional rankings, we use out-of-state tuition and fees in our calculations. Average in-state tuition and fees are used for our statewide rankings.

2021 Best Value Cosmetology Basic Certificate Schools in the United States

The colleges and universities below are the best value schools for cosmetology majors pursuing a basic certificate.

Top 25 Best Schools for Affordable Quality for an Award Taking Less Than 1 Year in Cosmetology

Our analysis found Clovis Community College to be the best value school for cosmetology students who want to pursue a basic certificate in the United States. Located in the remote town of Clovis, Clovis Community College is a public college with a small student population.

Clovis Community College undergraduate students pay an average of $2,984 in tuition and fees each year.

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#2

Saint Paul College

Saint Paul, MN

The excellent basic certificate programs at Saint Paul College helped the school earn the #2 place on this year’s ranking of the best value cosmetology schools in the United States. Located in the city of Saint Paul, Saint Paul College is a public college with a medium-sized student population.

Saint Paul College undergraduate students pay an average of $5,736 in tuition and fees each year.

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You’ll be in good company if you decide to attend McLennan Community College. It ranked #3 on our 2021 Best Value Cosmetology Basic Certificate Schools list. Located in the midsize city of Waco, MCC is a public college with a medium-sized student population.

The average tuition and fees for an out-of-state undergraduate student at MCC are $3,990 a year.

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#4

Johnson County Community College

Overland Park, KS

You’ll be in good company if you decide to attend Johnson County Community College. It ranked #4 on our 2021 Best Value Cosmetology Basic Certificate Schools list. JCCC is a fairly large public school located in the medium-sized city of Overland Park.

JCCC undergraduate students pay an average of $6,690 in tuition and fees each year.

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You’ll join some of the best and brightest minds around you if you attend Gateway Technical College. The school came in at #5 on this year’s Best Value Cosmetology Basic Certificate Schools list. Gateway Technical College is a large public school located in the medium-sized suburb of Kenosha.

Gateway Technical College undergraduate students pay an average of $6,575 in tuition and fees each year.

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Savannah Technical College did quite well in this year’s ranking of the best places for cosmetology students to get a basic certificate. It came in at #6 on the list. Savannah Tech is a small public school located in the city of Savannah.

Out-of-state tuition fees for undergraduate students at Savannah Tech are $5,422 per year.

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Chippewa Valley Technical College did quite well in this year’s ranking of the best places for cosmetology students to get a basic certificate. It came in at #7 on the list. CVTC is a moderately-sized public school located in the small city of Eau Claire.

The average tuition and fees for an out-of-state undergraduate student at CVTC are $6,481 a year.

CVTC also claimed a spot on our Best Cosmetology Basic Certificate Trade Schools list. It’s in the top 10% of all schools in this category.

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Wiregrass Georgia Technical College ranked #8 on this year’s Best Value Cosmetology Basic Certificate Schools list. Located in the small suburb of Valdosta, Wiregrass Georgia Technical College is a public school with a small student population.

The average tuition and fees for an out-of-state undergraduate student at Wiregrass Georgia Technical College are $5,552 a year.

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San Jacinto Community College landed the #9 spot in the 2021 rankings for the best value basic certificate cosmetology programs. San Jacinto College is a fairly large public school located in the large suburb of Pasadena.

Out-of-state tuition fees for undergraduate students at San Jacinto College are $5,040 per year.

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#10

Central Georgia Technical College

Warner Robins, GA

Central Georgia Technical College landed the #10 spot in the 2021 rankings for the best value basic certificate cosmetology programs. Located in the city of Warner Robins, CGTC is a public college with a medium-sized student population.

Out-of-state tuition fees for undergraduate students at CGTC are $5,442 per year.

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West Georgia Technical College came in at #11 in this year’s edition of the Best Value Cosmetology Basic Certificate Schools ranking. Located in the rural area of Waco, West Georgia Technical College is a public school with a medium-sized student population.

West Georgia Technical College undergraduate students pay an average of $5,452 in tuition and fees each year.

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Atlanta Technical College did quite well in this year’s ranking of the best places for cosmetology students to get a basic certificate. It came in at #12 on the list. Located in the large city of Atlanta, Atlanta Area Tech is a public college with a small student population.

The average tuition and fees for an out-of-state undergraduate student at Atlanta Area Tech are $5,484 a year.

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#13

Del Mar College

Corpus Christi, TX

Del Mar College came in at #13 in this year’s edition of the Best Value Cosmetology Basic Certificate Schools ranking. Located in the large city of Corpus Christi, DMC is a public school with a large student population.

DMC undergraduate students pay an average of $5,441 in tuition and fees each year.

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Augusta Technical College came in at #14 in this year’s edition of the Best Value Cosmetology Basic Certificate Schools ranking. Located in the city of Augusta, Augusta Technical College is a public school with a small student population.

Augusta Technical College undergraduate students pay an average of $5,632 in tuition and fees each year.

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Fox Valley Technical College landed the #15 spot in the 2021 rankings for the best value basic certificate cosmetology programs. Located in the midsize suburb of Appleton, FVTC is a public school with a fairly large student population.

The average tuition and fees for an out-of-state undergraduate student at FVTC are $6,688 a year.

FVTC also claimed a spot on our Best Cosmetology Basic Certificate Trade Schools list. It’s in the top 15% of all schools in this category.

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Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College came in at #16 in this year’s edition of the Best Value Cosmetology Basic Certificate Schools ranking. Located in the rural area of Shell Lake, WITC is a public school with a small student population.

The average tuition and fees for an out-of-state undergraduate student at WITC are $6,885 a year.

On top of its placing in our value ranking, WITC also did well on our Best Cosmetology Basic Certificate Trade Schools list. It’s in the top 20% of all schools reviewed in this analysis.

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Kansas City Kansas Community College landed the #17 spot in the 2021 rankings for the best value basic certificate cosmetology programs. Kansas City Kansas Community College is a medium-sized public school located in the medium-sized city of Kansas City.

Kansas City Kansas Community College undergraduate students pay an average of $6,510 in tuition and fees each year.

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#18

Lone Star College System

The Woodlands, TX

Lone Star College System did quite well in this year’s ranking of the best places for cosmetology students to get a basic certificate. It came in at #18 on the list. Located in the city of The Woodlands, North Harris Montgomery is a public school with a fairly large student population.

The average tuition and fees for an out-of-state undergraduate student at North Harris Montgomery are $5,564 a year.

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#19

Columbus Technical College

Columbus, GA

Columbus Technical College ranked #19 on this year’s Best Value Cosmetology Basic Certificate Schools list. Located in the medium-sized city of Columbus, Columbus Technical College is a public college with a small student population.

The average tuition and fees for an out-of-state undergraduate student at Columbus Technical College are $5,442 a year.

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Southern Crescent Technical College landed the #20 spot in the 2021 rankings for the best value basic certificate cosmetology programs. Located in the large suburb of Griffin, Southern Crescent Technical College is a public school with a medium-sized student population.

Southern Crescent Technical College undergraduate students pay an average of $5,526 in tuition and fees each year.

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#21

North Georgia Technical College

Clarkesville, GA

North Georgia Technical College came in at #21 in this year’s edition of the Best Value Cosmetology Basic Certificate Schools ranking. Located in the rural area of Clarkesville, North Georgia Technical College is a public college with a small student population.

North Georgia Technical College undergraduate students pay an average of $5,402 in tuition and fees each year.

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#22

Palm Beach State College

Lake Worth, FL

Palm Beach State College did quite well in this year’s ranking of the best places for cosmetology students to get a basic certificate. It came in at #22 on the list. Located in the large suburb of Lake Worth, Palm Beach State College is a public school with a very large student population.

Palm Beach State College undergraduate students pay an average of $8,732 in tuition and fees each year.

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#23

Ogeechee Technical College

Statesboro, GA

Ogeechee Technical College did quite well in this year’s ranking of the best places for cosmetology students to get a basic certificate. It came in at #23 on the list. Located in the town of Statesboro, Ogeechee Technical College is a public college with a small student population.

The average tuition and fees for an out-of-state undergraduate student at Ogeechee Technical College are $5,540 a year.

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El Paso Community College did quite well in this year’s ranking of the best places for cosmetology students to get a basic certificate. It came in at #24 on the list. El Paso Community College is a very large public school located in the large city of El Paso.

The average tuition and fees for an out-of-state undergraduate student at El Paso Community College are $4,858 a year.

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With a ranking of #25, Houston Community College did quite well on this year’s best value schools for cosmetology students working on their basic certificate. Located in the city of Houston, Houston Community College is a public school with a fairly large student population.

Houston Community College undergraduate students pay an average of $5,268 in tuition and fees each year.

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Rest of the Top 50 Best Value Cosmetology Basic Certificate Schools

#26

Pensacola State College

Pensacola, FL
#29

Indian River State College

Fort Pierce, FL
#32

San Diego City College

San Diego, CA
#35

Laurel Business Institute

Uniontown, PA
#36

IBMC College

Fort Collins, CO
#41

Cape Fear Community College

Wilmington, NC
#44

Greenville Technical College

Greenville, SC
#46

Douglas Education Center

Monessen, PA
#47

Riverside City College

Riverside, CA

Remaining Award Winners

This list represents the rest of the schools awarded a Best Value Cosmetology Basic Certificate Schools badge. Showing in this list means the school was ranked in the top 15% of the 631 different United States cosmetology schools we analyzed.

Rank College Location
50 Robert Fiance Beauty Schools-North Plainfield North Plainfield, NJ
50 Tennessee College of Applied Technology - Nashville Nashville, TN
50 Dermal Science International Aesthetics and Nail Academy Reston, VA
50 Charleston School of Beauty Culture Charleston, WV
50 Kenneth Shuler School of Cosmetology-Columbia Columbia, SC
50 Model College of Hair Design Saint Cloud, MN
50 Salon Success Academy - Redlands Redlands, CA
50 Lancaster Beauty School Lancaster, CA
50 G Skin & Beauty Institute Oakbrook, IL
50 Tint School of Makeup and Cosmetology-Irving Irving, TX
50 The Salon Professional Academy - Tonawanda Tonawanda, NY
50 Aveda Institute - Provo Provo, UT
50 Minnesota School of Cosmetology-Plymouth Campus Plymouth, MN
50 Georgia Institute of Cosmetology Athens, GA
50 Arkansas Beauty School - Little Rock Little Rock, AR
50 Salon Success Academy - Corona Corona, CA
50 Jenks Beauty College Jenks, OK
50 Dawn Career Institute LLC Wilmington, DE
50 Aveda Institute Portland - Vancouver Campus Vancouver, WA
50 Christine Valmy International School for Esthetics, Skin Care & Makeup New York, NY
50 Avalon School of Cosmetology - Mesa Mesa, AZ
50 Vogue College of Cosmetology-Santa Fe Santa Fe, NM
50 Hair Professionals Career College Sycamore, IL
50 Wade Gordon Hairdressing Academy-Lubbock Lubbock, TX
50 Jolie Hair and Beauty Academy-Ludlow Ludlow, MA
50 Aveda Institute - Madison Madison, WI
50 Vogue College of Cosmetology San Antonio, TX
50 Clarksburg Beauty Academy and School of Massage Therapy Clarksburg, WV
50 Tricoci University of Beauty Culture-Indianapolis Indianapolis, IN
50 Empire Beauty School-Bloomington Bloomington, MN
50 Aveda Institute - New York New York, NY
50 Paul Mitchell the School Birmingham Hoover, AL
50 Aveda Institute - Chapel Hill Chapel Hill, NC
50 Tucson College of Beauty Tucson, AZ
50 Spa Tech Institute-Ipswich Ipswich, MA
50 PJ’s College of Cosmetology-Bowling Green Bowling Green, KY
50 Celebrity Stylist Beauty School Monroe, LA
50 The Spa School Columbus, OH
50 Studio Beauty School Spokane Valley, WA
50 Elevate Salon Institute Royal Oak, MI
50 GateWay Community College - Central City Phoenix, AZ
50 Magnolia College of Cosmetology Jackson, MS
50 Bennett Career Institute Washington, DC
50 Elite Cosmetology School Yucca Valley, CA
50 Charles and Sues School of Hair Design Bryan, TX
50 Tricoci University of Beauty Culture-Urbana Urbana, IL
50 Ravenscroft Beauty College Fort Wayne, IN
50 Florida Academy of Health & Beauty Oakland Park, FL
50 Baldwin Beauty School - South Austin Austin, TX
50 Aveda Institute - Maryland Bel Air, MD
50 South Hills Beauty Academy Inc Pittsburgh, PA
50 Capitol School of Hairstyling and Esthetics Omaha, NE
50 Paul Mitchell the School Reno Reno, NV
50 Skinworks School of Advanced Skincare Salt Lake City, UT
50 House of Heavilin Beauty College-Blue Springs Blue Springs, MO
50 Levittown Beauty Academy Levittown, PA
50 W Academy of Salon and Spa Danville, CA
50 Academy of Salon and Spa Fort Smith, AR
50 Brittany Beauty Academy Bronx, NY
50 Ogle School Hair Skin Nails-Denton Denton, TX
50 Advance Beauty Techs Academy San Jacinto, CA
50 International Salon and Spa Academy Colorado Springs, CO
50 The Salon Professional Academy - Evansville Evansville, IN
50 Jolie Hair and Beauty Academy-Wilkes-Barre Wilkes Barre, PA
50 Empire Beauty School-Chandler Chandler, AZ
50 House of Heavilin Beauty College-Kansas City Kansas City, MO
50 Nova Academy of Cosmetology Rochester, MN
50 Jolie Health and Beauty Academy-Turnersville Turnersville, NJ
50 Victoria’s Academy of Cosmetology Kennewick, WA
50 Hollywood Institute of Beauty Careers-Casselberry Casselberry, FL
50 Broken Arrow Beauty College - Tulsa Tulsa, OK
50 Xenon International Academy-Omaha Omaha, NE
50 Butler Beauty Academy Butler, PA
50 Empire Beauty School-Warwick Warwick, RI
50 Florida College of Natural Health-Maitland Maitland, FL
50 Ogle School Hair Skin Nails-North Dallas Dallas, TX
50 House of Heavilin Beauty College-Academy of Beauty Professionals Appleton, WI
50 American College of Hair Design Sedalia, MO
50 The Salon Professional Academy - Melbourne Melbourne, FL
50 The Salon Professional Academy Battle Creek, MI
50 Trend Setters’ Academy of Beauty Culture-Elizabethtown Elizabethtown, KY
50 Skin Science Institute Salt Lake City, UT
50 Grace International Beauty School Flushing, NY
50 Coachella Valley Beauty College, Beaumont Beaumont, CA
50 Southeast Texas Career Institute Silsbee, TX
50 Empire Beauty School-Michigan Grand Rapids, MI
50 La Belle Beauty School Hialeah, FL
50 Lawrence & Company College of Cosmetology Hanford, CA
50 Paul Mitchell the School Murfreesboro Murfreesboro, TN
50 Capri Institute of Hair Design, Brick Brick, NJ
50 Xenon International Academy-Denver Aurora, CO
50 International Academy South Daytona, FL
50 Daytona College Ormond Beach, FL
50 Paul Mitchell the School Pasadena Pasadena, CA
50 National Beauty College Canton, OH
50 Fayetteville College of Cosmetology Arts and Sciences Fayetteville, TN
50 The Salon Professional Academy - San Jose San Jose, CA
50 Empire Beauty School-Lebanon Lebanon, PA
50 Sunstate Academy Fort Myers, FL
50 Christine Valmy International School of Esthetics & Cosmetology Pine Brook, NJ
50 Jenny Lea Academy of Cosmetology Johnson City, TN
50 Metro Beauty Academy Allentown, PA
50 Paul Mitchell the School Knoxville Knoxville, TN
50 College of International Esthetics Inc Arvada, CO
50 Imagine-Paul Mitchell Partner School North Little Rock, AR
50 Paul Mitchell the School Arlington Arlington, TX
50 North Florida Cosmetology Institute Inc Tallahassee, FL
50 Paul Mitchell the School North Haven North Haven, CT
50 Ogle School Hair Skin Nails-Ft Worth Fort Worth, TX
50 Empire Beauty School-West Mifflin West Mifflin, PA
50 Stylemaster College of Hair Design Longview, WA
50 Empire Beauty School-York York, PA
50 Glen Dow Academy of Hair Design Spokane, WA
50 Capri College, Dubuque Dubuque, IA
50 Milan Institute of Cosmetology-La Quinta La Quinta, CA
50 Delta Montrose Technical College Delta, CO
50 Empire Beauty School-Monroeville Monroeville, PA
50 Lytles Redwood Empire Beauty College Inc Santa Rosa, CA
50 Paul Mitchell the School Logan Logan, UT
50 Vogue College of Cosmetology-McAllen McAllen, TX
50 Empire Beauty School-Hanover Hanover, PA
50 Spa Tech Institute-Plymouth Plymouth, MA
50 Brittany Beauty Academy Levittown, NY
50 Cameo College of Essential Beauty Murray, UT
50 PJ’s College of Cosmetology-Glasgow Glasgow, KY
50 SW School of Business and Technical Careers-Cosmetology San Antonio, TX
50 Crevier’s Academy of Cosmetology Arts Kalispell, MT
50 Atelier Esthetique Institute of Esthetics New York, NY
50 Aveda Fredric’s Institute - Cincinnati West Chester, OH
50 Cosmetology Academy of Texarkana Texarkana, TX
50 Alexander Paul Institute of Hair Design Greenville, NC
50 Studio Academy of Beauty Chandler, AZ
50 Empire Beauty School-Vernon Hills Vernon Hills, IL
50 New York Institute of Beauty Islandia, NY
50 Tri-State Cosmetology Institute El Paso, TX
50 Shear Ego International School of Hair Design Rochester, NY
50 Tricoci University of Beauty Culture-Rockford Rockford, IL
50 Blue Cliff College - Metairie Metairie, LA
50 Altoona Beauty School Inc Altoona, PA
50 Paul Mitchell the School Schenectady Schenectady, NY
50 Federico Beauty Institute Sacramento, CA
50 Tricoci University of Beauty Culture-Lafayette Lafayette, IN
50 Paul Mitchell the School Farmington Hills Farmington Hills, MI
50 Paul Mitchell the School Spokane Spokane Valley, WA
50 Universal Spa Training Academy Downers Grove, IL
50 Phagans Beauty College Corvallis, OR
50 Kenneth Shuler School of Cosmetology-Spartanburg Spartanburg, SC
50 Trend Barber College Houston, TX
50 Boca Beauty Academy Boca Raton, FL
50 Brown Aveda Institute - Strongsville Strongsville, OH
50 Sylvain Melloul International Hair Academy Lynchburg, VA
50 Cinta Aveda Institute San Francisco, CA
50 Summit Salon Academy - Anderson Anderson, IN
50 Make-up Designory Burbank, CA
50 North Adrian’s College of Beauty Inc Modesto, CA
50 Adrian’s College of Beauty Turlock Turlock, CA
50 Star College of Cosmetology 2 Tyler, TX
50 Fort Worth Beauty School Benbrook, TX
50 Palomar Institute of Cosmetology San Marcos, CA
50 UCAS University of Cosemtology Arts & Sciences-McAllen McAllen, TX
50 Paul Mitchell the School Bradley Bourbonnais, IL
50 Bellus Academy - Poway Poway, CA
50 Long Island Nail & Skin Care Institute Levittown, NY
50 Paul Mitchell the School Richland Richland, WA
50 Salon Success Academy - Riverside Riverside, CA
50 Paul Mitchell the School Ogden Ogden, UT
50 Parisian Beauty School Hackensack, NJ
50 Brighton Institute of Cosmetology Brighton, MI
50 Miller-Motte College Wilmington Wilmington, NC
50 Empire Beauty School-Union Union, NJ
50 Kenneth Shuler School of Cosmetology-Rock Hill Rock Hill, SC
50 VICI Beauty School Greenfield, WI
50 Career Academy of Beauty Garden Grove, CA
50 Bitterroot School of Cosmetology Hamilton, MT
50 Arizona Academy of Beauty - East Tucson, AZ
50 Northwest College School of Beauty - Tualatin Tualatin, OR
50 Texas College of Cosmetology-Abilene Abilene, TX
50 PCI Academy-Plymouth Plymouth, MN
50 Blue Cliff College - Lafayette Lafayette, LA
50 Artistic Nails and Beauty Academy - Tampa Tampa, FL
50 Tricoci University of Beauty Culture-Highland Highland, IN
50 Academy Di Capelli - School of Cosmetology Wallingford, CT
50 College of Wilmington Wilmington, NC
50 Aveda Institute - Phoenix Tempe, AZ
50 Bellus Academy - El Cajon El Cajon, CA
50 Southwest Institute of Healing Arts Tempe, AZ
50 All Beauty College Fort Mohave, AZ
50 Paul Mitchell the School Grand Rapids Kentwood, MI
50 Jupiter Beauty Academy Boston, MA
50 Northwest College School of Beauty - Medford Medford, OR
50 Paul Mitchell the School Springfield Springfield, MO
50 Empire Beauty School-Cherry Hill Cherry Hill, NJ
50 Avalon School of Cosmetology - Phoenix Phoenix, AZ
50 Academy of Cosmetology Merritt Island, FL
50 Robert Fiance Beauty Schools-Perth Amboy Perth Amboy, NJ
50 Tricoci University of Beauty Culture-Chicago NW Chicago, IL
50 Paul Mitchell the School Salt Lake City Holladay, UT
50 Continental School of Beauty Culture, Mattydale Mattydale, NY
50 Elaine Sterling Institute Sandy Springs, GA
50 Bene’s Career Academy New Port Richey, FL
50 Design’s School of Cosmetology Paso Robles, CA
50 Brittany Beauty Academy New York, NY
50 Kenneth Shuler School of Cosmetology-Florence Florence, SC
50 Expertise Cosmetology Institute Las Vegas, NV
50 Continental School of Beauty Culture, Rochester Rochester, NY
50 Empire Beauty School-Laconia Laconia, NH
50 Cosmetology Career Center LLC Carrollton, TX
50 Josef’s School of Hair Design Inc-Grand Forks Grand Forks, ND
50 Milan Institute-San Antonio Ingram San Antonio, TX
50 Corinth Academy of Cosmetology Corinth, MS
50 Empire Beauty School-Concord Concord, NC
50 Debutantes School of Cosmetology and Nail Technology Dekalb, IL
50 Paul Mitchell the School Delaware Newark, DE
50 Tricoci University of Beauty Culture-Elgin Elgin, IL
50 Ogle School Hair Skin Nails-San Antonio San Antonio, TX
50 American Institute - Margate Margate, FL
50 Empire Beauty School-Wyoming Valley Moosic, PA
50 Lyle’s College of Beauty Fresno, CA
50 Ogle School Hair Skin Nails-Dallas Dallas, TX
50 Empire Beauty School-Tucson Tucson, AZ
50 Aveda Institute - Twin Falls Twin Falls, ID
50 Ogle School Hair Skin Nails-Stafford Stafford, TX
50 Colleen O’Haras Beauty Academy Santa Ana, CA
50 Jolie Hair and Beauty Academy-Northfield Northfield, NJ
50 Career School of NY Staten Island, NY
50 Academy of Esthetics and Cosmetology San Fernando, CA
50 Northwest College School of Beauty - Eugene Springfield, OR
50 Empire Beauty School-Lehigh Valley Whitehall, PA
50 Milan Institute of Cosmetology-El Paso El Paso, TX
50 The Salon Professional Academy - Onalaska Onalaska, WI
50 Barrett and Company School of Hair Design Nicholasville, KY
50 Paul Mitchell the School San Diego San Diego, CA
50 Empire Beauty School-Bloomfield Bloomfield, NJ
50 First Class Cosmetology School Beloit, WI
50 Creative Images Institute of Cosmetology, South Dayton Dayton, OH
50 Empire Beauty School-Springfield Springfield, PA
50 Aveda Institute - Minneapolis Minneapolis, MN
50 La James International College-Ft Dodge Fort Dodge, IA
50 Casal Aveda Institute Austintown, OH
50 Sunstate Academy Clearwater, FL
50 Phagans School of Hair Design Happy Valley, OR
50 Toledo Academy of Beauty Culture-East OREGON, OH
50 Guy’s Shreveport Academy of Cosmetology Inc Shreveport, LA
50 Artistic Academy of Hair Design Morris Plains, NJ
50 Miller-Motte College Fayetteville Fayetteville, NC
50 Aveda Institute - San Antonio San Antonio, TX
50 University of Spa & Cosmetology Arts Springfield, IL
50 Ogle School Hair Skin Nails-Arlington Arlington, TX
50 Lansdale School of Cosmetology Inc Lansdale, PA
50 D’Jay’s Institute of Cosmetology and Esthiology Baton Rouge, LA
50 Medspa Academies South Jordan, UT
50 The Salon Professional Academy - Appleton Appleton, WI
50 Aveda Institute - Los Angeles Los Angeles, CA
50 International School of Skin Nailcare & Massage Therapy Atlanta, GA
50 Shear Excellence Hair Academy Tampa, FL
50 Cheeks International Academy of Beauty Culture-Fort Collins Loveland, CO
50 College of Hair Design-Downtown Lincoln, NE
50 Acaydia School of Aesthetics Provo, UT
50 Vanguard College of Cosmetology-Metairie Metairie, LA
50 Bold Beauty Academy Billings, MT
50 Wright Beauty Academy Battle Creek, MI
50 Rob Roy Academy-Worcester Worcester, MA
50 City Pointe Beauty Academy Webb City, MO
50 PCI Academy-Ames Ames, IA
50 Vanguard College of Cosmetology-Baton Rouge Baton Rouge, LA
50 Eves College of Hairstyling Lawton, OK
50 Toni & Guy Hairdressing Academy-Albuquerque Albuquerque, NM
50 Vogue College of Cosmetology-San Antonio Fredericksburg San Antonio, TX
50 Paul Mitchell the School San Antonio San Antonio, TX
50 Headlines Academy Inc Rapid City, SD
50 Aveda Institute - Tucson Tucson, AZ
50 Hays Academy of Hair Design Salina, KS
50 Divine Crown Academy of Cosmetology Union Square Shopping Center, PA
50 Artistic Nails and Beauty Academy - Lakeland Lakeland, FL
50 Creative Images Institute of Cosmetology, North Dayton Dayton, OH
50 Robert Fiance Beauty Schools-West New York West New York, NJ
50 Coachella Valley Beauty College La Quinta, CA
50 EINE Inc Tewksbury, MA
50 Vanguard College of Cosmetology-Slidell Slidell, LA
50 Butler Beauty Academy - New Castle Beauty Academy New Castle, PA
50 Newberry School of Beauty Granada Hills, CA
50 Jean Madeline Aveda Institute Philadelphia, PA
50 BJ’s Beauty & Barber College Tacoma, WA
50 Beauty Academy of South Florida Hialeah Gardens, FL
50 Brown Aveda Institute - Mentor Mentor, OH
50 Tricoci University of Beauty Culture-Bridgeview Bridgeview, IL
50 The University of Aesthetics & Cosmetology Downers Grove, IL
50 The Institute of Beauty and Wellness Milwaukee, WI
50 Washington Barber College Inc Little Rock, AR
50 Trend Setters’ Academy of Beauty Culture-Louisville Louisville, KY
50 Empire Beauty School-E Memphis Memphis, TN
50 Capri College, Cedar Rapids Cedar Rapids, IA
50 Phagans School of Beauty Salem, OR
50 Rivertown School of Beauty Barber Skin Care and Nails Columbus, GA
50 House of Heavilin Beauty College-Academy of Beauty Professionals Madison, WI
50 Aveda Institute - New Mexico Albuquerque, NM
50 Oliver Finley Academy of Cosmetology Boise, ID
50 Aveda Institute - Tallahassee Tallahassee, FL
50 Empire Beauty School-Reading Reading, PA
50 Empire Beauty School-Somersworth Somersworth, NH
50 Lancaster School of Cosmetology & Therapeutic Bodywork Lancaster, PA
50 Spa Tech Institute-Westbrook Westbrook, ME
50 Protege Academy East Lansing, MI
50 Summit Salon Academy - Gainesville Gainesville, FL
50 Beyond 21st Century Beauty Academy Santa Fe Springs, CA
50 Georgia Career Institute Conyers, GA
50 Hair Professionals School of Cosmetology Oswego, IL
50 Paul Mitchell the School Great Lakes Port Huron, MI
50 Marketti Academy of Cosmetology Waterford, MI
50 The Salon Professional Academy - North Little Rock North Little Rock, AR
50 La James International College-Cedar Falls Cedar Falls, IA
50 The Beauty Institute Allentown, PA
50 Iowa School of Beauty-Des Moines Des Moines, IA
50 Protege Academy Mt. Pleasant, MI
50 Tricoci University of Beauty Culture-Libertyville Libertyville, IL
50 David Pressley School of Cosmetology Royal Oak, MI
50 Avi Career Training Great Falls, VA
50 Capri Institute of Hair Design, Paramus Paramus, NJ
50 Empire Beauty School-Center City Philadelphia Philadelphia, PA
50 Academy of Hair Technology Greenville, SC
50 Don Roberts School of Hair Design Schererville, IN
50 University of Aesthetics & Cosmetology Chicago, IL
50 Milan Institute-Bakersfield Bakersfield, CA
50 Avalon School of Cosmetology - Alameda Alameda, CA
50 Aveda Institute - Chicago Chicago, IL
50 Paul Mitchell the School Nampa Nampa, ID
50 Paul Mitchell the School Sacramento Sacramento, CA
50 Cosmo Beauty Academy Sacramento, CA
50 Baltimore School of Massage - Linthicum Linthicum, MD
50 New York School of Esthetics & Day Spa white plains, NY
50 Omega Institute of Cosmetology Houma, LA
50 Kenneth Shuler School of Cosmetology-Greenville Greenville, SC
50 French Academy of Cosmetology Spring Lake, MI
50 Exposito School of Hair Design Amarillo, TX
50 Genesis Career College-Lebanon Lebanon, TN
50 Health and Style Institute High Point, NC
50 Empire Beauty School-Lancaster Lancaster, PA
50 Milan Institute-Nampa Nampa, ID
50 International Institute of Cosmetology Wethersfield, CT
50 Empire Beauty School-Florence Florence, KY
50 The Beauty Institute-Ambler Ambler, PA
50 Aveda Institute - Boise Boise, ID
50 House of Heavilin Beauty College-Raymore Raymore, MO
50 Michigan College of Beauty-Monroe Monroe, MI
50 Michaels School of Hair Design and Esthetics - A Paul Mitchell Partner School Bedford, NH
50 Venus Beauty Academy Sharon Hill, PA
50 Northwest College School of Beauty - Hillsboro Hillsboro, OR
50 San Francisco Institute of Esthetics & Cosmetology Inc San Francisco, CA
50 Aveda Institute - Des Moines West Des Moines, IA
50 Employment Solutions-College for Technical Education Lexington, KY
50 Clary Sage College Tulsa, OK
50 The Chrysm Insitute of Esthetics Virginia Beach, VA
50 Crave Beauty Academy Wichita, KS
50 Empire Beauty School-Nashville Brentwood, TN
50 Flair Beauty College Valencia, CA
50 Robert Paul Academy of Cosmetology Arts & Sciences Timonium, MD
50 Tricoci University of Beauty Culture-Chicago NE Chicago, IL
50 Empire Beauty School-NE Philadelphia Philadelphia, PA
50 Salon Success Academy - Fontana Fontana, CA
50 Chambersburg Beauty School Chambersburg, PA
50 Designer Barber & Stylist School Ft Smith, AR
50 Searcy Beauty College Searcy, AR
50 Milan Institute of Cosmetology-San Antonio Military San Antonio, TX
50 Central Oklahoma College Oklahoma City, OK
50 La James International College-Davenport Davenport, IA
50 Paul Mitchell the School Michigan Sterling Heights, MI
50 Genesis Career College-Cookeville Cookeville, TN
50 La James International College-Iowa City Iowa City, IA
50 Academy of Salon Professionals Sedalia, MO
50 Empire Beauty School-Kennesaw Kennesaw, GA
50 Aesthetic Science Institute Latham, NY
50 Universal Career School Sweetwater, FL
50 California Hair Design Academy La Mesa, CA
50 Empire Beauty School-Harrisburg Harrisburg, PA
50 Bucks County School of Beauty Culture Inc Feasterville, PA
50 Florida Academy Fort Myers, FL
50 Paul Mitchell the School Houston Houston, TX
50 Academy for Salon Professionals Northridge, CA
50 Aveda Fredric’s Institute - Indianapolis Indianapolis, IN
50 American Beauty College West Covina, CA
50 Paul Mitchell the School Modesto Modesto, CA
50 Hair Professionals Academy of Cosmetology West Dundee, IL
50 UCAS University of Cosmetology Arts & Sciences-Harlingen Harlingen, TX
50 Jolie Health & Beauty Academy-Cherry Hill Cherry Hill, NJ
50 Queen City College Clarksville, TN
50 Douglas J Aveda Institute East Lansing, MI
50 Jolie Hair and Beauty Academy-Hazleton Hazleton, PA
50 Charles of Italy Beauty College Lake Havasu City, AZ
50 Baldwin Beauty School - North Austin Austin, TX
50 Diamonds Cosmetology College Sherman, TX
50 L’esprit Academy Livonia, MI
50 Keune Academy by 124 Lawrenceville, GA
50 Salon & Spa Institute Brownsville, TX
50 O’Briens Aveda Institute Williston, VT
50 Coba Academy Anaheim, CA
50 Miller-Motte College Chattanooga Chattanooga, TN
50 Spa Tech Institute-Westboro Westboro, MA
50 ASM Beauty World Academy Davie, FL
50 Ohio State School of Cosmetology-Canal Winchester CANAL WINCHESTER, OH
50 Paroba College of Cosmetology Everett, WA
50 Olympian Academy of Cosmetology Alamogordo, NM
50 Capri Cosmetology Learning Centers Nanuet, NY
50 Southern Texas Careers Academy McAllen, TX
50 Mr John’s School of Cosmetology Esthetics & Nails-Decatur Decatur, IL
50 Phagans Central Oregon Beauty College Bend, OR
50 Tricoci University of Beauty Culture-Glendale Heights Glendale Heights, IL
50 Elite School of Cosmetology Norwalk, OH
50 Kenneth Shuler School of Cosmetology-Goose Creek Goose Creek, SC
50 Stewart School Sioux Falls, SD
50 Ohio State School of Cosmetology-Heath Heath, OH
50 Academy of Hair Design - Springfield Springfield, MO
50 Empire Beauty School-Shamokin Dam Shamokin Dam, PA
50 Hair Expressions Academy Rockville, MD
50 Capri College, Davenport Davenport, IA
50 Francis Tuttle Technology Center Oklahoma City, OK
50 Tint School of Makeup & Cosmetology-Seattle Seattle, WA
50 Paul Mitchell the School Tulsa Tulsa, OK
50 Evergreen Beauty and Barber College-Everett Everett, WA
50 Austin Kade Academy Idaho Falls, ID
50 Gene Juarez Academy of Beauty-Federal Way Federal Way, WA
50 Professional Institute of Beauty El Monte, CA
50 Summit Salon Academy - Tacoma Tacoma, WA
50 P&A Scholars Beauty School Detroit, MI
50 Estelle Skin Care and Spa Institute Skokie, IL
50 California Beauty School Modesto, CA
50 Academy of Hair Design - Lufkin Lufkin, TX
50 Summit Salon Academy - Tampa Tampa, FL
50 Lu Ross Academy Ventura, CA
50 Empire Beauty School-Hanover Park Hanover Park, IL
50 Aveda Institute - Portland Portland, OR
50 La’James International College Fremont, NE
50 All Beauty College Lake Havasu City, AZ
50 Innovate Salon Academy South Plainfield, NJ
50 Instituto de Banca y Comercio Inc Guaynabo, PR
50 Texas College of Cosmetology-Lubbock Lubbock, TX
50 House of Heavilin Beauty College-Academy of Beauty Professionals Green Bay, WI
50 Trend Barber College Houston, TX
50 Dorsey School of Beauty - Taylor Taylor, MI
50 Erie 1 BOCES West Seneca, NY
50 Total Image Beauty Academy Union City, NJ
50 All Beauty College Kingman, AZ
50 Capilo School of Hair Design Augusta, ME
50 Lively Technical Center Tallahassee, FL
50 Palace Beauty College Los Angeles, CA
50 Aveda Institute - South Florida Davie, FL
50 Capri Institute of Hair Design, Clifton Clifton, NJ
50 Paul Mitchell the School Las Vegas Las Vegas, NV
50 Milan Institute-Clovis Fresno, CA
50 Paul Mitchell the School Esani Roswell, GA
50 PJ’s College of Cosmetology-Clarksville Clarksville, IN
50 Paul Mitchell the School Austin Austin, TX
50 The Beauty School Stroudsburg, PA
50 Empire Beauty School-NW Phoenix Phoenix, AZ
50 Citrus Heights Beauty College Citrus Heights, CA
50 Salon Success Academy - Upland Upland, CA
50 Beau Monde Academy of Cosmetology Portland, OR
50 Academy of Career Training Kissimmee, FL
50 Palm Beach Academy of Health & Beauty Lake Park, FL
50 Elite College of Cosmetology Lexington, TN
50 Empire Beauty School-West Greensboro Greensboro, NC
50 New Concept Massage and Beauty School Miami, FL
50 Northwest College School of Beauty - Beaverton Beaverton, OR
50 Loraines Academy & Spa Saint Petersburg, FL
50 Hinton Barber and Beauty College Vallejo, CA
50 Academy of Hair Design - Las Vegas Las Vegas, NV
50 Eastern Virginia Career College Fredericksburg, VA
50 Total Transformation Institute of Cosmetology San Marcos, TX
50 Michigan College of Beauty-Troy Troy, MI
50 Woodward Beauty College Woodward, OK
50 Nuvo College of Cosmetology Norton Shores, MI
50 Trend Setters’ Academy of Beauty Culture-Louisville Louisville, KY
50 Academy of Hair Design - Jasper Jasper, TX
50 Aveda Institute - Covington Covington, LA
50 Capri Institute of Hair Design, Kenilworth Kenilworth, NJ
50 Tint School of Makeup and Cosmetology-Dallas Grand Prairie, TX
50 Paul Mitchell the School Lombard Lombard, IL
50 Elevate Salon Institute - Westminster Westminster, CO
50 The Salon Professional Academy - Altoona Altoona, PA
50 Penrose Academy Scottsdale, AZ
50 Aveda Institute - Lafayette Lafayette, LA
50 The Salon Professional Academy Nampa, ID
50 American Institute of Beauty Largo, FL
50 La Belle Beauty Academy Miami, FL
50 Mandalyn Academy American Fork, UT
50 Aveda Institute - Columbus Columbus, OH
50 Paul Mitchell the School Boise Boise, ID
50 Aveda Institute - Denver Denver, CO
50 Merrell University of Beauty Arts and Science Jefferson City, MO
50 Shore Beauty School Egg Harbor Township, NJ
50 Blue Cliff College - Alexandria Alexandria, LA
50 Empire Beauty School-Paramus Paramus, NJ
50 Renaissance Academie Provo, UT
50 Laird Institute of Spa Therapy Manchester, NH
50 Florida College of Natural Health-Pompano Beach Pompano Beach, FL
50 Mississippi Institute of Aesthetics Nails & Cosmetology Clinton, MS
50 Royale College of Beauty and Barbering Temecula, CA
50 Miller-Motte College Raleigh Raleigh, NC
50 SW School of Business and Technical Careers Eagle Pass, TX
50 Northwest College School of Beauty - Clackamas Happy Valley, OR
50 UCAS Univeristy of Cosmetology Arts & Sciences-La Joya La Joya, TX
50 Black Hills Beauty College Rapid City, SD
50 Panache Academy of Beauty Baraboo, WI
50 The Salon Professional Academy - Lewisville Lewisville, TX
50 Educators of Beauty College of Cosmetology-La Salle PERU, IL
50 Blue Cliff College - Houma Houma, LA
50 Empire Beauty School-Pottsville Pottsville, PA
50 Paul Mitchell the School Memphis Bartlett, TN
50 Elizabeth Grady School of Esthetics and Massage Therapy Medford, MA
50 Texas College of Cosmetology-San Angelo San Angelo, TX

Additional Noteworthy Schools

Here are some additional great value schools for Cosmetology students seeking value that almost earned our Best Value Cosmetology Basic Certificate Schools award.

Rank College Location

Cosmetology by Region

View the Best Value Cosmetology Basic Certificate Schools for a specific region near you.

Region
Southeast
New England
Rocky Mountains
Plains States
Middle Atlantic
Far Western US
Southwest
Great Lakes

One of 3 majors within the trade school area of study, cosmetology has other similar majors worth exploring.

Cosmetology Concentrations

Major Annual Graduates
General Cosmetology/Cosmetologist 52,002
Aesthetician/Esthetician & Skin Care Specialist 23,657
Nail Technician/Specialist & Manicurist 10,042
Barbering/Barber 8,937
Cosmetology, Barber/Styling, & Nail Instructor 1,881
Facial Treatment Specialist/Facialist 1,732
Other Cosmetology and Related Personal Grooming Arts 1,563
Make-Up Artist/Specialist 1,409
Master Aesthetician/Esthetician 1,142
Hair Styling/Stylist & Hair Design 773
Salon/Beauty Salon Management/Manager 247
Electrolysis/Electrology & Electrolysis Technician 239
Permanent Cosmetics/Makeup & Tattooing 50

Related Major Annual Graduates
Culinary Arts 26,643
Funeral & Mortuary Science 1,965
Other Personal & Culinary Services 320

Notes and References

*These averages are for the top 25 schools only.

  • The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), a branch of the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) serves as the core of the rest of our data about colleges.
  • Some other college data, including much of the graduate earnings data, comes from the U.S. Department of Education’s (College Scorecard).
  • Credit for the banner image above goes to Tiffany Bumgardner.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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