Pennsylvania Licensure Requirements

Cosmetology Curriculum

1 Examination

1,250 -2,000 Hours

No Continuing Education Requirement

$118.00 Initial Fee

$82.00 Renewal Fee

A licensed individual who is engaged in the practice of cosmetology. The practice of cosmetology includes the embellishment, cleanliness and beautification of the human hair, such as arranging, braiding, dressing, curling, waving, permanent waving, cleansing, cutting, singeing, bleaching, coloring, pressing, or similar work thereon and thereabout.

Education Requirement: 

10th Grade Education or Equivalent & Cosmetology Curriculum - Applicant must have completed the tenth grade or its equivalent and must have completed a minimum of 1,250 hours in the cosmetology curriculum at a licensed school of cosmetology OR must have been registered and served as an apprentice for a minimum of 2,000 hours in a licensed cosmetology salon under the supervision of a licensed cosmetology teacher,  unless over 35 years of age or a veteran.

Examination Requirement: 

1 Examination - An applicant must pass the state theory and procedural examinations as required by the State Board of Cosmetology.


1,250 -2,000 Hours - Applicant must complete one of the following:  (i) Completed a minimum of 1,250 hours of instruction in cosmetology, within a period of not less than 8 consecutive months, as a day-time student in a licensed school of cosmetology.  (ii) Completed a minimum of 1,250 hours of instruction in cosmetology, within a period of not less than 15 consecutive months, as a night-time student in a licensed school of cosmetology.  (iii) Completed 2,000 hours of training in a Board approved cosmetology apprentice program.

Continuing Education: 

No continuing education requirement for licensure.

Initial Licensing Fee: 

$118.00 - $25 application fee & $93 fee to the testing organization

For Reciprocity/Act 41 applicants, there is a $85 fee.

Licensure Renewal Fee: 

$82.00 - Biennial renewal of license

Licensure by Reciprocity or Licensure by Act 41:

To apply by reciprocity, an applicant must submit an employment certification showing a minimum of two years of licensed work experience in the state, territory or country in which you have a current license.

Act 41 allows for portability of out-of-state professional licensees coming to work in Pennsylvania. Act 41 does this by granting all boards and commissions within the Commonwealth the authority to endorse licensees from other states, territories or jurisdictions (with substantially equivalent licensing requirements) who are active, in good standing and without discipline against their license or criminal conviction.