Why Do I Need a License?

Kyle Richardson#Excellence, Austin, Core Values, Springfield, Uncategorized

Why do cosmetologists, barbers, estheticians, and manicurists need to be licensed to do their jobs? Beyond the obvious reason-the law-there are many reasons behind the implementation of these laws. With a few states considering doing away with this requirement, being aware of the logic behind the laws is more important than ever.

Let’s break down the top 3 reasons why the license is a crucial aspect of the beauty and barbering industry.


When looking for a salon or spa home, you won’t be hireable without a license. Salon owners want to see that their employees completed the required hours of education before providing services at their facility and under their reputation. While the state requires licensure currently, if these laws were changed, someone who has a license will always be a more attractive candidate.

When picking the stylist you want to color your hair or the manicurist to give your nails that next fresh mani, you want someone who knows what they are doing. You want to be sure they will produce the results you’re looking for. If given the choice between someone who has 1500 hours of education under their belt or someone who has spent a few months shadowing and learning from another stylist, which would you choose? Chances are, you want the person with close to a year of hands-on training from a licensed instructor.

While having the soft skills you need to succeed are important, there’s so much more to learn. A cosmetologist needs to know how to work with different hair types and conditions. If someone walks into a salon and asks for a perm, the stylist needs to be able to evaluate the hair and ensure it is healthy enough to withstand the harsh chemicals involved with perming. Hair that is too damaged could fall out.

educator checking student's perm

An esthetician has similar concerns when providing facial services. Say a client has an allergy or intolerance to a certain ingredient. Their esthetician needs to know alternative products to use and what products to avoid.

Sanitation/Disease Control

You know you want a barber or cosmetologist who has the skills and knowledge to give you a killer look. What we don’t think about is, needing someone who is trained in proper sanitation practices and infectious disease prevention. While many people do not think of this as part of the training process, the reality is, this is one of the most important aspects of this type of education. Proper sanitation procedures prevent the spread of lice and staph infections. While cuts are uncommon, everyone makes mistakes, barbers included. If your barber were to accidentally nick your ear you would most likely shed at least a little blood. Your barber needs to know how to properly cleanse not only you but his tools as well.  Knowing what products to use and how to use them, keeps your barber, you, and everyone around you safe and healthy.

Advancement Opportunities

Furthermore, without a license, many incredible opportunities will not be available. For example,  you’ll never be able to own your own business, educate future professionals, or represent a brand. If you decided to relocate, this would be nearly impossible without a license. Laws do vary by state, but transferring a license is fairly easy. You may only need to take some extra hours of education, depending on the state’s law. Lastly, staying up to date with new trends keeps you relevant as times change. Without continuing education courses, you won’t be able to keep up with an ever-evolving client base.

student studying out of book

The bottom line is if you want to find success in the beauty and barbering industry, you MUST seek proper schooling and put in the time and hard work. You’ll feel an unmatched sense of accomplishment on graduation day.

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