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Cosmetologists help their clients look better by offering a variety of aesthetic therapies. All states require licensure, which often requires completion of a state-approved cosmetology program and passing a certification or licensing exam.

All states require cosmetologists, who specialize in providing for people’s hair, nails, and skin, to be licensed. The majority of states provide a comprehensive cosmetology license that covers all three of these topics. In a few states, additional specialty licenses are available. Read this article to know about cosmetology license requirements.


To obtain a license, you must either complete an accredited cosmetology curriculum at a school or complete an apprenticeship program. Graduates must pay a fee and pass written and practical exams after completing their program. To keep your license current, most states require you to attend continuing education classes.

Education: Apprenticeship or a cosmetology training program at a school.

Additional requirements: HIV/AIDS training and a minimum age requirement (specifics differ by state)

Exam requirements: Written exams on theory and methods, as well as practical demonstrations of abilities in eight different areas and written exams on state regulations.

Licensing Exams

Generally, applicants must pass two or three licensure tests. An entrance examination on theories and processes is usually included, as well as a practical exam for each of the eight basic services and, in certain cases, a knowledge test on state cosmetologist rules and laws.

NIC Exam

Its licensing exam includes the fundamental principles of cosmetology that learners develop in a beauty school. The exam is expected to take four hours to finish, however, this time may vary depending on the test you’re taking and how long you take to complete it.

The exam will vary per state, however, it will almost always involve assessments of the candidate’s knowledge of the following topics: blow-dry styling, manicures, hair styling, shaping, thermal cutting, etc.

These ideas are an important aspect of a cosmetologist’s set of skills, and the test is designed to make sure that all applicants understand the fundamentals of the industry. As a practical illustration, the test consists of a mixture of computer-based questions. Candidates should have supplies such as napkins, spray containers, protective clothing, and disinfectants on hand for the latter.


In this sector, licensure is required, and it entails completing a cosmetology curriculum as well as completing both practical and theoretical licensing tests.