Your Safety First
Keep your clients safe through licensing & regulations.


The following explains how the regulation of the professional beauty industry protects the consumer and how licensed professionals are accountable for your health and safety.

Q: What kinds of beauty professionals have licenses?

A: Hair stylists, colorists, barbers, estheticians and nail technicians are licensed professionals.

Q: Did you know a cosmetology license encompasses more than just hair?

A: Throughout their education, licensed professionals study skin and scalp care, anatomy, biology, chemistry, and science-based infection control.

Q: Why is it important that your licensed beauty professional be properly educated and licensed?

A: Licensed professionals are trained to utilize chemicals and tools safely to avoid injuries and the spread of infectious diseases such as: burns, hair damage and loss, ring worm, folliculitis, lice, cuts, ingrown toenail and fungal infections, chemical burns, scarring, staph infections, nail separation, permanent nail disfigurement, skin pigmentation damage, strep throat, skin injuries due to waxing, infections after waxing, Hepatitis B or Hepatitis C, HIV, and athlete’s foot.

Q: Why does your state legislature regulate the professional beauty industry?

A: Your state legislature creates laws to protect consumers and for the betterment of all residents of your state. Regulating the professional beauty industry provides consumer protection and consumer safety. Your state legislature has established and granted authority to your state board of barbering and cosmetology to regulate the professional beauty industry.

Q: What does legislation do?

A: The purpose of legislation is consumer health and safety. Legislation and regulations establish educational requirements to ensure knowledge and competency, which are verified by testing. Accountability is established through licensing which is governed by state boards.

Q: Do you know the steps that your licensed beauty professional takes to ensure your safety?

A: Beauty professionals first must complete hundreds of hours of schooling where they learn about proper safety and sanitation procedures, graduate from a cosmetology program, and successfully pass their state board exam to become a licensed professional.

Q: How is your licensed beauty professional held accountable to uphold these safety standards?

A: Your state board of barbering and cosmetology has in place a consumer complaint resolution process that includes sending inspectors to examine establishments, conducting hearings to address consumer complaints, and assessing appropriate fines and penalties.

Q: What are some common safety standards practiced by licensed beauty professionals in salons and spas?

A: Proper sanitation procedures are necessary to minimize the threat of viral and bacterial infections, such as influenzas, warts, severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), herpes simplex virus/human papillomavirus (HSV/HPV), methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), ringworm and folliculitis. Laundry, combs and brushes, pedicure tubs, neck strips, capes, head rests and sinks for shampooing, clips, sheers/scissors, tweezers, cuticle clippers, work station including countertop and chair, nail clippers, and barber clippers are all required to be sanitized.

Q: How do professionals comply with state and federal standards put forth by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)?

A: With the advancement of services, tools, equipment and products, licensed professionals need to keep up with these changes in order to continue offering the highest level of consumer safety standards. Continuing Education programs provide licensed professionals with the information and skills required to uphold these standards. Continuing education ensures that the workforce is current on the latest health and safety standards.

Q: What could happen if a state removed all regulations for licensed beauty professionals?

A: Standards for safety and sanitation would no longer exist. There would be no inspectors to examine salons, no schooling required, no exam, no license, and no consumer complaint resolution process. Without accountability, services provided to you would be at your own risk!