State Board of Cosmetology
GUIDANCE FOR COSMETOLOGY SALONS PERMITTED TO OPERATE DURING MITIGATION MEASURES TO ENSURE THE SAFETY AND HEALTH OF EMPLOYEES AND THE PUBLIC
ISSUED 06/14/2020; UPDATED 10/15/2020;
LAST UPDATED 05/25/2021
On 5/13/21, the CDC provided guidance that fully vaccinated individuals can resume activities that they did prior to the pandemic without wearing a mask or physically distancing except where required by law, rule, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance. Therefore, businesses are to follow CDC guidance, and the previous “Guidance for Cosmetology Salons and Cosmetology School Clinics Permitted to Operate During the Green Phase to Ensure the Safety and Health of Employees and the Public” has been rescinded.
PLEASE NOTE WITH REGARD TO MASKING: The masking requirement will still be in place for unvaccinated individuals until 70 percent of Pennsylvanians age 18 and older are fully vaccinated. Read more
Content Editor 
UPDATED 06/11/2021 (ORIGINALLY POSTED: 05/17/2021) - BPOA has received many questions from licensed professionals about what happens to licensing waivers if the COVID-19 emergency disaster declaration is ended. With the Governor's signing of HB 854 (now Act 21 of 2021), licensing waivers will remain active until September 30, 2021, unless ended sooner. We will provide additional updates as more information becomes available.
The State Board of Cosmetology regulates the practice and licensure of estheticians; nail technicians; cosmetologists and teachers of cosmetology; and cosmetology salons and schools in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The Board promulgates and enforces regulations for the examination and licensure of applicants to practice or teach cosmetology and to manage schools of cosmetology.
The Board also issues apprentice permits in appropriate circumstances as well as licenses to perform nail technology only, natural hair braiding only or practice esthetics only. The Board prescribes disinfection standards to be followed to prevent the creation or spread of infectious diseases.
GUIDANCE FOR COSMETOLOGY SALONS PERMITTED TO OPERATE DURING THE GREEN PHASE TO ENSURE THE SAFETY AND HEALTH OF EMPLOYEES AND THE PUBLIC
As a result of prior test center closures and measures taken in response to the declared state of emergency, prompt examination appointment availability may be limited in some areas of the Commonwealth. A number of candidates who were otherwise eligible for a temporary permit at the time of application did not make this election in anticipation of the usual prompt availability of test center appointments. The Board would like to make these candidates aware they may request a temporary permit even if their application has been submitted and a test date scheduled. Any such candidate seeking to obtain a temporary permit may contact Dasher, Inc. at 1-866-474-1148. Please be prepared to provide the Dasher representative with your PALS application number.
Pearson Vue testing site closure information
The best method for candidates to register for an exam is to log into their Pearson VUE account, via the web at: https://home.pearsonvue.com/pa/cosmetology, or, https://home.pearsonvue.com/pa/bpoa, and search for an exam date & time; candidates can then enter different zip codes and a mile radius as well for alternate options.
Visit our COVID Webpage: https://home.pearsonvue.com/coronavirus-update
Click on the FAQ Hyperlink for questions and answers regarding scheduling and rescheduling.
Information on the Governor’s Plan to Reopen Pennsylvania
The plan for Pennsylvania can be found
More information on the full process to Reopen Pennsylvania can be found
Learn more about the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak
For updated guidance regarding online education during the COVID-19 outbreak:
Please read the following important information:
- On November 5, 2018, the State Board of Cosmetology approved a consent agreement (case number 17-45-06196) in which the Respondent acknowledged that the practice of microblading is outside of the scope of cosmetology and that performing microblading within a cosmetology salon is a violation of 49 Pa. Code § 7.77 (use of salon for other purposes prohibited).
- The Board’s regulations allow an applicant to request a variance from the minimum space requirements set forth in 49 Pa. Code § 7.76 (floor space). All floor space variance requests shall be submitted in the manner set forth in the new salon application or salon change application, whichever is applicable.
- Bureau inspectors will continue to inspect the entirety of your salon for compliance with 49 Pa. Code § 7.77 and all other relevant regulations and provisions of the Cosmetology Act.
- Reminder: The Board staff and Board counsel are unable to give advisory opinions, legal advice or interpretations of the Cosmetology Act and Board regulations. Please consult an attorney of your choice for legal advice or interpretations of the Cosmetology Act and Board regulations.
IF YOUR LICENSE IS EXPIRED
If your license has been expired for less than 5 years,
please visit www.pals.pa.gov
to reactivate your license. Upon logging in to PALS, scroll down until you see your license number. To the left of your license number, you will see a green pencil icon. Click on the green pencil and a pop up window will appear. You will then see the word "reactivate"; click on it and follow the directions to reactivate your license. Payment is by credit or debit card only. After successful reactivation of your license, it will be mailed to you. Please ensure that you maintain a valid mailing address so that your license is not returned to the Board.
Also, please allow seven to ten business days to receive your renewed license in the mail.
If your license has been expired for more than 5 years,
the Cosmetology Law states that you must retake the examination in order to reactivate the license. Please contact Dasher, Inc., at 1-866-474-1148 or email: email@example.com and ask for a reinstatement application
. Dasher, Inc., processes all exam applications for the exam administrator, Pearson VUE. To view a copy of the Law and Regulations, please visit: www.dos.pa.gov/cosmet
Please note that neither the Board/Commission, nor its staff or counsel, are permitted to provide legal advice or advisory opinions, including interpretations of the law or regulations, or any indication as to how the Board would vote on any given case or scenario. You are invited to contact a private attorney or professional organization for advice or guidance.