9 Top Rated Cosmetology Programs in Ohio

Cincinnati, Cleveland, and Columbus – Ohio is full of cities that boast beautiful, high-end salons. From names like Paul Mitchell and Aveda to small, family-owned academies, Ohio offers a variety of programs designed to prepare you for success in the salon industry. With an average cost of $16,536, these programs will give you all the training hours you need to qualify for your cosmetologist license, plus a little some extra, all without breaking the bank.

View details here on the criteria we used to select top schools.

Here you’ll find our pick for the top ten best beauty academies in Ohio offering cosmetology programs that meet the requirements for state licensure.

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Aveda Institute - Columbus


  • Tuition: $21,450
  • Kit Cost: $2,800
  • Program Length: 12 months

Like Paul Mitchell, the Aveda Institute is known throughout the country for its excellent products and stylists. The Columbus institute offers beauty facilities and a curriculum that combines cosmetology techniques with business training. The school accepts VA benefits from qualified veterans and a Horst Rechelbacher Scholarship for applicants who show particular promise. The Aveda Institute offers charity benefits throughout the year such as Earth Month, the Earth Jam Fashion Benefit, and Beauty for a Cure. After graduation, Aveda can help you with job placement in a cosmetology position that’s best for you.

Elite School of Cosmetology - Norwalk & Ashland


  • Tuition: $14,000
  • Kit Cost: $500
  • Program Length: 12 months

Elite School of Cosmetology offers a lower-than-average tuition an excellent curriculum. Within a year, you can gain a comprehensive cosmetology education and be on your way to a career in cosmetology! Elite School of Cosmetology also offers job placement services to each student enrolled in their program.

Moler Beauty Academy - Cincinnati & Fairfield


  • Tuition: $15,375
  • Kit Cost: $1,340
  • Program Length: 20 months

Through hair styling, cutting, and coloring techniques, nail and skin care procedures, and salon management practices, the Moler Beauty Academy can help you jumpstart your career. The Moler Beauty Academy also accepts VA benefits from veterans and offers a scholarship opportunity for qualified applicants. After graduation, you’ll be offered job placement services.

National Beauty College - Canton


  • Tuition: $15,750
  • Kit Cost: $1,040
  • Program Length: 9 months

The National Beauty College “strives to develop personality traits, individual skills, and manual dexterity” within each student through their cosmetology education. Each student will have the opportunity to give back to the community through charity events such as hair shows and beauty shows. After graduation, the National Beauty College can help you with job placement.

Ohio State Beauty Academy - Lima


  • Tuition: $11,100
  • Kit Cost: $1,700
  • Program Length: 14 months

The Ohio State Beauty Academy offers the lowest tuition of all ten schools that made our list. There’s also VA benefits available to veterans and scholarships available to qualifying students. Even though you’ll be paying a lower price, you won’t be sacrificing quality. The OSBA’s facilities are well-maintained, and after graduation you’ll be provided job placement services. Students at the OSBA are offered the opportunity to connect with the community through events such as hair and beauty shows that benefit charity.

Paul Mitchell School - Columbus


  • Tuition: $17,000
  • Kit Cost: $3,000
  • Program Length: 11 months

With a name like Paul Mitchell, you can be sure that your education is quality. The Paul Mitchell brand is well known for its excellent products and salons throughout the country. In the Columbus academy, you’ll learn the exclusive techniques of the Paul Mitchell cutting system in a high-end facility. You’ll also learn essential business practices for cosmetologists. The Paul Mitchell school gives over 1 million dollars in scholarships each year to students at academies throughout the country. They also accept VA benefits from qualified veterans. Once you’ve graduated, it’ll be easy to find a job through the academy’s job placement services and network of salons throughout the country. You’ll also have the opportunity to be involved in the community through cut-a-thons, fashion shows, and other fundraising events.

Raphael's School of Beauty Culture, Inc - Brunswick, Alliance, Boardman, Niles, & North Olmsted


  • Tuition: $17,740
  • Kit Cost: $2,640
  • Program Length: 13 months

With five locations, Raphael’s School of Beauty Culture, Inc offers a cosmetology education that not only teaches hair, skin and nail care but also incorporates business practices for salon management. You might consider applying for the school’s scholarship, and Raphael’s school also accepts VA benefits from veterans. After graduation, Raphael’s School can help you find the perfect cosmetology positon through their job placement services.

Salon Institute - Toledo & Columbus


  • Tuition: $16,350
  • Kit Cost: $2,842
  • Program Length: 12 months

With two locations featuring high-end facilities, you’ll be able to choose the Salon Institute campus that’s nearest you. Salon Institute made our list because of their comprehensive program, which offers business training as well as the vital skills training you need to blow your clients away.

The Salon Institute also got our attention for using the TIGI cutting and coloring techniques, as well as TIGI makeup, Temptu Pro airbrush makeup, and Bioelements products. The institute offers a scholarship and accepts VA benefits from veterans. It’s a great place for community-minded students, as the school hosts charity events such as hair shows.

Western Hills School of Beauty & Hair Design - Cincinnati


  • Tuition: $19,195
  • Kit Cost: $1,722
  • Program Length: 15 months

The Western Hills School of Beauty & Hair Design offers training in cosmetology and salon management at two locations in Cincinnati. You’ll learn to do shampoo, haircuts, hairstyling, chemical services, color services, skin care, and nail care. The Western Hills School also offers a scholarship to students who qualify and job placement services.

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