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Do I Need A License To Do Lashes?

Updated: Oct 30, 2023

A common question we get asked at NALA is “Do I need a license to do lash extensions?”.


Currently (summer 2023) in the USA the laws vary from state to state. Each state board has its own rules and regulations for lash extension services. Only a handful of states are unregulated. Some cosmetology boards have now created a specialty license for lash technicians whereas other boards still have lash services as part of the cosmetology license. NALA is in collaboration with many state cosmetology boards to help create regulations for lash technician education and licensing.


In Canada, only the province of Nova Scotia has regulations for lash services. All other provinces are currently unregulated. In the U.K. and Australia, lash services are also unregulated. NALA serves each of these countries as a non-governmental regulating body for the lash industry. NALA Members are bound to the NALA standards which are developed and updated annually by our international board of advisors.


In states and provinces that are regulated, an official license is required. A license can be obtained by completing a state/province approved program and passing the licensing exam. These programs are typically about 300 hours of class time and apprentice hours. The licensing exam is usually carried out by your state cosmetology board. This process will vary from state to state.


In non-regulated areas a certificate is acceptable. A certification course is usually taught over two or three days (more is better). A Certificate of Completion is awarded after your instructor is confident that you have achieved a specific level of comprehension and skill. It’s important to be selective when choosing a school in an unregulated area. Without regulations it’s difficult to know if your training course will properly prepare you for a career in the industry. Seek out a NALA Accredited academy in order to have peace of mind that you are making a great investment. Our accredited academies have had their curriculums thoroughly reviewed to ensure they meet or exceed industry standards. Find a list of accredited academies on our Global Directory.


It is your responsibility to know your local laws. To find the requirements in your state or province, visit our regulations page where we have listed the links to your local government or cosmetology board website.


Whether you are in the USA, Canada, the U.K. or Australia, NALA Membership boosts your credibility, shows your clients they can trust you, and with access to the NALA community and business-building workshops, membership can also help you grow your business. Learn more about the many perks and benefits of membership on our website.


Follow us on Instagram to be the first to see any updates regarding regulation updates @lashassociation


Disclaimer: This blog is intended for informational purposes and is not intended to replace formal business advice, financial advice, government regulations, or any other form of legal advice.

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