NH House approves bill to ease cosmetology licensing requirements

The Keene Sentinel
Published: 3/21/2022 4:34:03 PM
Modified: 3/21/2022 4:33:14 PM

The N.H. House has approved a bill co-sponsored by Winchester Republican Rep. Jennifer Rhodes to ease licensing requirements for cosmetologists.

House Bill 1171 was approved 201-147 on Wednesday.

Under the legislation, people would not be required to have a cosmetology license to perform services such as blow-dry styling, which includes shampooing, conditioning, drying, arranging, curling and straightening. A license would also not be required to do eyelash extensions, makeup application and removing eyebrow hair with a thread.

“These are services most people already do at home or have a friend or family member do for them,” Rhodes said before the N.H. House.

The legislation would not change the requirement for a license in order to work with hair-coloring solutions, perming chemicals, or use haircutting shears and razors.

“By the way, a person is able to walk into a store right now and buy hair coloring and at-home perm kits,” Rhodes said. “I wouldn’t recommend it, but, hey, it’s your hair.”

Rep. Jaci Grote, D-Rye, spoke against the measure. Both she and Rhodes are on the House Executive Departments and Administration Committee, which recommended the bill to the full House on a 11-8 vote on March 7.

“This bill does not require so much as a course in sanitation, infection prevention or passage of an exam,” she said.

“In the specific case of eyelash extension, a chemical is placed in the eye area and the minority [of the committee] is strongly not in favor of this allowance. There are no states that allow this service without licensing and training for the purpose of aesthetics or cosmetic purposes.”

Rhodes put out a statement after the bill passed saying too many occupations require a license.

“These requirements are often rationalized by saying they are needed to protect consumers,” she said. “While I agree that there are cases where requirements are necessary, we must strike the right balance. There are far too many instances where burdensome licensing requirements have little to no effect on achieving their stated goal.”

Cosmetology licenses in New Hampshire require a minimum of 1,500 hours of training in an approved cosmetology school or 3,000 hours of work under a licensed cosmetologist.

In order to become law, the bill would have to clear the Senate and be signed by the governor.

These articles are being shared by partners in The Granite State News Collaborative. For more information visit collaborativenh.org.
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