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News and Updates

Barber and Cosmetology Practical Exams to Resume June 1

While Governor Abbott’s Executive Order GA-23 expands the re-opening of businesses throughout Texas, TDLR has worked with our exam vendor, PSI, to resume practical examinations for the barber and cosmetology industries. All exam sites have adjusted schedules and reduced capacity in accordance with CDC and state social distancing guidelines. Additionally, TDLR has reviewed and approved PSI’s health protocols to ensure they meet all state guidelines regarding COVID-19.

Under these restrictions, TDLR will resume barber and cosmetology practical exam delivery at all 8 PSI sites across Texas starting Monday, June 1, 2020.

Please visit PSI’s COVID-19 page for more information on rescheduling.

Clarification on Temporary Distance Education

The Governor’s Executive Order dated May 5, 2020, allowed Barber and Cosmetology schools and Massage schools to reopen on May 18, 2020. The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) understands there are still concerns as plans are made to open Texas while minimizing the spread of COVID-19, including temporary restrictions to ensure continued social distancing as our communities resume normal activities in a safe manner.

Due to these concerns, schools can continue to utilize temporary distance learning and virtual learning to complete all technical standards for the theory and practical portion of a course. This allows schools to determine when they can safely transition students back into their traditional brick and mortar classrooms. TDLR’s goal is to enable schools to continue to teach their students despite the current circumstances related to COVID-19.

TDLR’s temporary provisions are in line with the U.S. Department of Education and provide flexibility to schools to help students complete their course work while effectively developing the job skills and knowledge to obtain a license in Texas. However, remote practical instruction does not include internship or apprenticeship instructional hours.

Schools engaging in the delivery of distance education with remote instruction must ensure that all hours are properly accounted for each student engaged in the remote theory and practical hours of instruction, including record of attendance and time clock records. Additionally, schools must ensure the identity of the distance-learning student, the student/instructor ratio limitation, and the student’s ability to be equipped with the proper tools to effectively demonstrate the practical applications. Schools must maintain compliance with all statutory requirements.

Schools should notify TDLR when the school resumes all regular, traditional on-campus classes or activities and ceases temporary distance education. Notice should be provided by email at Education@tdlr.texas.gov

These provisions will remain in place until further notice.

Updates to Governor's Executive Order to Expand Openings of Certain Businesses and Activities

Under the Executive Order to Expand Openings of Certain Businesses and Activities issued by Gov. Greg Abbott on May 5, cosmetology salons, hair salons, barber shops, nail salons/shops, and other establishments where licensed cosmetologists or barbers practice their trade may reopen on May 8 and must ensure at least six feet of social distancing between operating work stations. Please note that all cosmetology licensees, including estheticians and all other cosmetology specialty license holders, should follow these health guidelines:

Nail Salon Operators

Cosmetology Salon Operators

The Strike Force to Open Texas also released guideline for customers to use when visiting a hair salon or nail salon:

Nail Salon Customers

Cosmetology Salon Customers

This Executive Order overrides any local orders prohibiting these businesses from opening.

Attorney General Issues Guidance Re: Barbershop, Cosmetology Salon, Nail Salon, Esthetician Salon, Massage Establishment and Laser Hair Establishments Closures

Yesterday, the Texas Attorney General's Office released a guidance letter to address questions relating to Governor Abbott's Executive Order GA-18. Barbershops, cosmetology salons (including nail and esthetician), massage establishments, and laser hair establishments must remain closed until further notice. The Governor's order overrides conflicting local and county orders.

Cosmetology Salons, Nail Salons, Estheticians, Mini-Salons, Barber Shops, Laser Hair Removal Establishments and Massage Therapy Establishments Remain Closed

Under Executive Order GA-18 issued by Gov. Greg Abbott on April 27, all cosmetology salons (including nail salons, estheticians, and mini-salons), barber shops, laser hair removal establishments and massage establishments shall continue to remain closed. Executive Order GA-18 overrides all local and county orders.

Whether a salon or shop is a sole proprietorship or not, they are to remain closed until Executive Order GA-18 is amended or rescinded.

Thank you for continuing to do your part to keep Texas safe by remaining closed. To read more about the Governor's plan to reopen Texas, please go to https://gov.texas.gov/uploads/files/organization/opentexas/OpenTexas-Report.pdf.

Governor's Order Re-Opening Retail Businesses

The Governor's Executive Order today focuses on retail businesses. It continues the closure of cosmetology salons, barber shops or massage establishments for services. Starting April 24, those businesses may sell products via pickup, delivery by mail or delivery to the customers’ doorstep in strict compliance with the terms required by the Texas Department of State Health Services, which can be found at www.dshs.texas.gov/coronavirus. Gov. Abbott stated today that the next step in the re-opening process for Texas will be announced April 27. Please continue to go to our COVID-19 page for updates, and sign up for our email updates as well.

Reduction of Cosmetology Hours from 1500 hours to 1000 hours

Ray Pizarro, TDLR's Education and Examination Director, addresses schools regarding the reduction of cosmetology hours from 1500 hours to 1000 hours. He also discusses the frequently asked questions which have been received from schools and students.

Video 1 Reduction of Hours

Video 2 Frequently Asked Questions

TDLR Adopts Amendments to Administrative Rules

The Texas Commission of Licensing and Regulation (Commission) adopts amendments to the Cosmetologists program rules at (16 Texas Administrative Code, Chapter 83, §§83.10, 83.20 - 83.23, 83.25, 83.28, 83.52, 83.70, 83.72, 83.74, 83.80, and 83.120; and new rule §83.77). The adopted rules implement necessary changes as required by House Bill (HB) 2847, 86th Legislature, Regular Session (2019), lowering the number of hours required to obtain an Operator License from 1,500 to 1,000, increasing the inspection cycle for establishments that provide certain services, and providing for the regulation of remote service businesses and digitally prearranged remote services. The adopted rules also reduce regulatory burdens and provide more clarity to the industry by using updated and standardized terminology.

The adoption justification was published in the March 6, 2020, issue of the Texas Register (45 TexReg 1693). The updated rule chapter is available since its effective date of March 15, 2020.

Notice to Educational Providers

RE: Provisions to allow Cosmetology Schools to offer practical instructions remotely.

The health and safety of all our licensees is of the utmost importance. To proactively address the concerns regarding COVID-19, the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) will allow Cosmetology Schools to utilize technologies such as videos of hands on work, electronic learning, virtual learning, and other practices that would effectively deliver the practical portion of the school’s curriculum to ensure that a student develops the job skills and knowledge to obtain a license in this State.

Schools must ensure that all hours are properly accounted for each student engaged in remote practical applications, in accordance with Chapter 83, Section 83.72(l), including a record of attendance and time clock record. Additionally, schools must ensure the identity of the distance learning student, the student/instructor ratio limitation, and the student’s ability to be equipped with the proper tools to effectively demonstrate the practical applications.

Remote practical instruction does not include internship or apprenticeship instructional hours. TDLR’s goal is to enable schools to continue to teach their students despite the current circumstances related to COVID-19.

Licensed Schools that may be impacted by COVID-19 can notify TDLR by email at education@tdlr.texas.gov with the subject line of the email as “COVID-19 remote practical instruction” and provide the following information:

  • School name and license number;
  • Type of delivery method, including the platform, technology, or program being used for distance education;
  • Verification that the school will maintain photo or video evidence to confirm the practical work attendance; and
  • Type of method which will be used for tracking student attendance, including hours completed.

These provisions will remain in place until further notice.

COVID-19: Continuing Education Waived

TDLR continuing education requirements are waived for all individual licenses expiring in March, April, and May 2020. Licensees still need to submit their renewal applications, pay the required fees, and TDLR will check their criminal histories, but they will not need to complete any TDLR-required continuing education this licensing cycle. (§51.405, Occupations Code)

Note: TDLR is not authorized to waive continuing education requirements imposed by a certifying or credentialing entity other than TDLR. If a certifying entity requires continuing education to maintain certification, and certification is required for Texas licensure, then that continuing education must be completed. If the certifying entity waives continuing education or allows it to be completed on a delayed basis due to COVID-19, then you may follow the certifying entity’s policy.

Please check the TDLR COVID-19 webpage for the most up-to-date information.

List of Barbershop, Hair Salon and Nail Salon Closures

The following counties and cities have ordered closures of TDLR-regulated hair salons, nail salons, and barbershops to help slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

In addition, some cities and counties have issued blanket “Stay Home/Work Safe” orders that cover all professions not specifically mentioned in the Cyber+Infrastructure Agency (CISA) critical infrastructure document. Professions that are not included as critical infrastructure include barbers, cosmetologists, salons and massage therapists, so those practitioners must stay home in accordance with applicable city and county orders.

TDLR licensees can sign up for official TDLR email alerts. These email updates are the best way to ensure they receive the most accurate and up-to-date information about TDLR.

Provisions for Temporary Emergency Distance Education - Barber, Cosmetology, Driver Education and Massage Schools

The health and safety of all our licensees is of the utmost importance. To proactively address the concerns regarding COVID-19, the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) has enacted temporary emergency distance education provisions to allow current licensed schools to offer distance education limited to the theory hours of instruction to not exceed more than 50 percent of the course. TDLR’s temporary emergency provision is in line with the Department of Education to provide flexibilities for schools to help students complete their course work. 

Courses taught by distance education will not satisfy requirements of practical (hands-on) portions of course curriculum. The goal of the department is to enable schools to continue to teach their students despite the current outbreak of COVID-19.

Licensed Schools that may be impacted by COVID-19 can notify the department by email TDLR at education@tdlr.texas.gov with the subject line of the email as “COVID-19 Temporary Emergency Distance Education Request” and provide the following information:

  • School name and license number
  • Type of delivery method, including the technology or program being used for distance education
  • Type of method which will be used for tracking student attendance, including hours completed
  • Timed outline indicating the portion of the course or curriculum which will be completed by distance education

Temporary emergency distance education accommodations will remain in place until further notice.

Reduction of the Cosmetology Operator 1500-Hour Course to 1000-Hour Course

The Executive Director of the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) has determined that the highest priority for successful implementation of House Bill 2847 is a smooth transition for schools and students, with little or no disruption in class schedules during the transitional period. 

To implement the change in law, TDLR is conditionally approving all schools operating a licensed 1500-hour cosmetology operator course to enroll students in a 1000-hour cosmetology operator course beginning May 1, 2020.

This conditional approval is valid from May 1, 2020 to August 31, 2020. TDLR will continue to recognize the validity of a 1500-hour course enrollment begun prior to May 1, 2020, which will allow currently enrolled students to complete their education.

To continue offering a 1000-hour cosmetology operator course after August 31, 2020, licensed cosmetology schools must have applied for and received a certificate of approval for their course. All courses must meet the updated industry standards adopted under 16 Texas Administrative Code Chapter 83, Section 83.120.

Cosmetology schools may continue offering 1500-hour cosmetology operator courses; however, beginning May 1, 2020, TDLR certificates of approval for cosmetology operator courses will only reflect approval for 1,000 hours of instruction, as outlined in 16 Texas Administrative Code Chapter 83, Section 83.120.

Once an individual has obtained 1,000 hours of instruction, they have met the education requirement for an Operator License in accordance with Texas occupations Code Chapter 1602, Section 1602.254. Any additional hours offered by schools above the 1,000 hours required by statute and rule are not required for someone to obtain a license.

The 1,000 hours mandated by the Texas Legislature, along with the technical requirements adopted by the Texas Commission of Licensing and Regulation, provides students with the foundational knowledge, skills, and abilities to successfully operate as licensed cosmetologists. TDLR commends the commitment of cosmetology schools to excellence in education and to their student’s need for advanced and continuing education.

For more information, please see the frequently asked questions.

For questions or concerns regarding this notice, please contact TDLR’s Education and Examination Division at SHEARS@tdlr.texas.gov.

TDLR Revokes AM Beauty School License

TDLR has revoked the license of AM Beauty College in Irving, located at 1215 S. MacArthur Blvd.

TDLR stands ready to help those students who were enrolled at AM Beauty College with evaluating their hours and transferring to a licensed school. Students from AM Beauty College should reach out to our education team at Education@tdlr.texas.gov - please place “AM Beauty College” in the subject line.

Attention Cosmetology Schools

Updates regarding the implementation of House Bill 2847, 86th Legislature, Regular Session (2019) and the reduction of the cosmetology operator 1500-hour program to a 1000-hour program

The proposed rules were published in the Texas Register on January 3, 2020, 45 TexReg 42. Comments on the proposed rules may be submitted by mail P.O. Box 12157, Austin, Texas 78711, by facsimile (512) 475-3032, or electronically: erule.comments@tdlr.texas.gov. The deadline to submit public comments is February 3, 2020.

The Advisory Board on Cosmetology is scheduled to meet on Monday, February 10, 2020 at 1:30 pm. The Advisory Board will review the public comments for the proposed rules and could recommend adoption.

Schools may begin making adjustments to modify the hours for existing lesson plans and the course syllabus to transition students from the cosmetology operator 1500-hour program to the new 1000-hour program. The amount of time for the 1500-hour program should be reduced to 1000 hours to meet the new technical standards for §83.120, once the proposed rules are adopted by the Texas Commission of Licensing and Regulation (Commission).

  • If the proposed rules are approved by the Commission, do schools need to submit approval applications to offer the new cosmetology operator 1000-hour program immediately?

    No, schools will be able to offer and enroll students in the new 1000-hour program without prior approval. Classes can continue with no delays. TDLR will contact schools with the instructions for applications and documentation which will be needed.

Education and Examination Division
Occupational Technical Service Team
Education@tdlr.texas.gov

Your Voice Matters: TDLR Wants Your Input on Proposed Disaster Recovery Rules

The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) would like your comments and suggestions regarding proposed new rules to assist with recovery efforts when the Governor declares a disaster under Government Code, Chapter 418. As part of our Core Value of open and free communication we are asking for your feedback on these proposed rules before we file them with the Texas Register as required by the Administrative Procedures Act.

The proposed new Disaster Recovery Rules include provisions for:

Obtaining and renewing an emergency license, and alternative license requirements for the following license types: Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractors, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Technicians, Electricians, Consent Tow Truck Permits, Consent Tow Operator License, Tow Company License, Temporary Vehicle Storage Facilities, Out-of-State Healthcare Providers, and Mold Assessment and Remediation Companies.

The proposed new Disaster Recovery Rules, among other things, allow Barber, Cosmetology, and Driver Education Schools to relocate during the declared disaster and waive the filing of reports. The proposed new rules address Water Treatment Records required to obtain an extension for boiler inspections and extend the continuing education requirements for Driver Education Instructors. The new proposed rules waive fees and provide for sanctions and administrative penalties.

Comments may be submitted via email to erule.comments@tdlr.texas.gov, via facsimile to (512) 475-3032, or by mail to Dalma Sotero, Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation, PO Box 12157, Austin, TX 78711. Deadline for receipt of comments is 5:00 pm, September 16, 2019.

TDLR Adopts Rule Review

At their meeting held January 11, 2019, the Texas Commission of Licensing and Regulation adopted the rule review of 16 Texas Administrative Code (TAC) Chapter 83, Cosmetologists, effective January 25, 2019.

The rule review adoption was published in the February 8, 2019 issue of the Texas Register (44 TexReg 597).

TDLR encourages all persons interested in the Cosmetologists program to review the rule review adoption.

SHEARS Student Enrollment Video

Cosmetology school staff can now view an instructional video that shows how to enroll a cosmetology student using the Student Hour and Enrollment Automated Reporting System (SHEARS). View the SHEARS student enrollment video

Cosmetology School Closures

Our first priority is to provide answers to common questions for students affected by a Cosmetology School closure. Please visit the Cosmetology School Closure Information for Students page.

Please see the U.S. Department of Education document: Information for Students Affected by the Closure of Education Corporation of America Schools (PDF) regarding the recent closure of Virginia College in Lubbock.

Barber and Cosmetology Schools Now Allowed at the Same Location

TDLR is making an important change to how we license barber and cosmetology schools. Effective immediately, barber and cosmetology schools will be allowed to operate at the same location.

This change will remove impediments for school operators, help streamline our regulations, and make the application review process easier during initial licensing for barbering and cosmetology schools.

Here’s why we’re making this change: Senate Bill 2065 (85th Texas Legislature, 2017) removed the established square footage requirements for schools and stated that the Texas Commission of Licensing and Regulation may not enforce standards for barbering and cosmetology buildings or facilities that are not related to health and safety.

In response to this change in the law, and to the feedback we received during our 2018 Strategic Planning sessions, we evaluated our historic position regarding barber and cosmetology schools operating on the same premises and in the same space.

We have concluded that barber and cosmetology schools can safely operate in the same space; however, schools may not operate in the same space at the same time. Schools who offer both programs must hold both school licenses and meet all requirements for both the barbering and cosmetology programs.

We believe this decision will remove burdens for schools but will not impact the health and safety of students or the standards for the barbering and cosmetology programs.

It is our hope that these changes will provide real cost-savings, especially for public schools with a limited amount of funds and for small business owners who will save on rent, utilities, equipment, supplies, payroll, and maintenance.

Please direct any questions or comments to education@tdlr.texas.gov.

Sign Required for All Cosmetology Establishments and Schools

Beginning February 1, 2018, all cosmetology businesses - including mini-salons, specialty salons, mobile salons, and schools - are required by Texas law to display a sign with information about available services and assistance to victims of human trafficking. TDLR has created three signs for you to choose from – download one and use in your place of business. All signs are designed to print in color or black and white:

The sign must be placed in a prominent location where it can be seen by the public.

Background

On September 1, 2017, the provisions of House Bill 2552 went into effect, which require that any business holding a license issued under Chapter 1602 of the Occupations Code display a sign concerning services and assistance to victims of human trafficking. The law states:

“Sec. 1602.408. POSTING OF CERTAIN NOTICES REQUIRED. (a) In this section, "licensed facility" means the premises of a place of business that holds a license, certificate, or permit under this chapter.
(b) A licensed facility shall display a sign approved by or acceptable to the commission or the department concerning services and assistance available to victims of human trafficking.
(c) The sign required by this section must be in English, Spanish, and Vietnamese and include a toll-free telephone number of a nationally recognized information and referral hotline for victims of human trafficking.
(d) The commission by rule shall establish requirements regarding the posting of signs under this section.”

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is human trafficking?
Human trafficking is modern-day slavery and involves the use of force, fraud, or coercion to obtain some type of labor or commercial sex act. Human trafficking is a hidden crime as victims rarely come forward to seek help because of fear of the traffickers, fear of law enforcement, and/or language barriers. For more information on human trafficking, visit the Office of the Attorney General website.

2. Why are we required to display the sign?
The requirement was added by House Bill 2552, which passed in the 2017 legislative session and was signed into law by Governor Greg Abbott on June 15, 2017. The sign requirement is now part of the Cosmetology law.

3. Does every mini-salon need to display the human trafficking information sign?
Yes. The law requires each licensed cosmetology business to display the sign. This includes each mini-salon, specialty salon, mobile salon, and school.

4. What happens if I don’t display the sign?
TDLR inspectors will have copies of the sign available during their upcoming inspections in case your business does not have the sign displayed. If an inspector returns for a future inspection and the sign is still not displayed, then a violation may be noted on your inspection report.

More information on how to combat human trafficking:

SCAM ALERT! – Fake TDLR Letters Demand Money with Green Dot MoneyPak Cards

(Tieng Viet / En Español)

TDLR received reports of a scammer mailing fake TDLR letters to license holders. The scammer is targeting people with previous TDLR violations and will likely mention those violations. He may also say he is from the “sheriff’s office” or “OSHA” and may indicate he is trying to help the business owner.

This sophisticated scam includes falsely telling business owners their license is suspended and instructing them to get a “Business Surety Bond.” The scammer also demands money or payment with Green Dot MoneyPak cards.

It appears the scam targets Vietnamese and Spanish speakers by providing false TDLR phone numbers for these languages.

Please see the attached example of one type of scam letter we have seen recently.

Remember:

  • TDLR will never ask you to pay a penalty or fine without first sending a Notice of Alleged Violation to you by certified mail.
  • TDLR will never request or accept money or gift cards under any circumstances while visiting your business.
  • TDLR does not request or accept payments via Green Dot MoneyPak cards.

If you receive a suspicious call or email like this, please contact your local law enforcement agency immediately. Please also call TDLR at 800-803-9202 to verify we did not contact you.

Scams like this one can happen anywhere. Please use the information above to identify any suspicious or potentially illegal activity. Impersonating a public servant is a third-degree felony under the Texas Penal Code.

Notice for All Schools and Educational Programs Licensed by TDLR

As of September 1, 2017, House Bill 1508 requires that all entities providing educational or instructional programs that prepare a student for an occupation or vocation requiring a TDLR license to:

    1. Inform the student or program participant that eligibility for a TDLR license could be affected by the person’s criminal history;
    2. Notify students and participants that TDLR is responsible for having in place guidelines regarding a license applicant's criminal history, and to include information on an applicant's ability to be licensed under those guidelines;
    3. Provide students with information on other state or local restrictions that would affect the student’s eligibility for an occupational license issued by TDLR;
    4. Inform students of the student's right to request a criminal history evaluation letter from TDLR;
    5. Provide all persons who enroll in their program with notice of the requirements as described above, regardless of whether or not the person has been convicted of a criminal offense.

An educational entity or training program operator who fails to provide this information to a person who is enrolled in their course may be liable for tuition or application fees paid by any student who is denied a TDLR license due to the existence of a criminal conviction.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Why does my school need to provide this notice?
During the 85th Legislative Session, the Legislature passed House Bill 1508 that requires notice be provided to students in an educational program that prepares individuals for issuance of an occupational license. House Bill 1508 takes effect on September 1, 2017. (Chapter 53, Texas Occupations Code). Entities and schools that provide educational programs to prepare an individual for issuance of an initial occupational license must provide this notice.

2. What information should the notice include?
Section 53.152 of the Occupations Code requires entities or schools to notify each applicant to and enrollee in the educational program of the following information:

  1. the potential ineligibility of an individual who has been convicted of an offense for issuance of an occupational license after completion of the educational program;
  2. the current criminal history guidelines issued under Section 53.025, Occupations Code, by any licensing authority that may issue an occupational license to an individual who completes the educational program;
  3. any other state or local restriction or guideline used by a licensing authority described by Subdivision (2) to determine the eligibility of an individual who has been convicted of an offense for an occupational license issued by the licensing authority; and
  4. the right to request a criminal history evaluation letter under Section 53.102, Occupations Code.

3. Who needs to receive this notice?
House Bill 1508 requires notice to each enrollee in and applicant to an educational program. Notice must be provided to individuals who are enrolled in an educational program subject to the notice requirement on or after September 1, 2017, and to individuals who apply for enrollment in the program on or after September 1, 2017.

4. How do we provide this notice?
Each entity or school required to provide notice is responsible for determining how best to provide the notice information to applicants and enrollees. TDLR has developed a suggested notice and acknowledgement form to provide guidance on how to provide this information. The form is available for download.

5. What happens if this notice is not provided?
If TDLR determines that the entity or school providing the educational program failed to provide the notice required by Section 53.152, Occupations Code, to an individual entitled to receive the notice and that individual was denied a license because the individual has been convicted of an offense, the law requires TDLR to order the entity or school to:

  1. refund the amount of any tuition paid by the individual to the entity or school; and
  2. pay to the individual an amount equal to the total of the following, as applicable:
    1. the amount of any application fees paid by the individual to TDLR; and
    2. the amount of any examination fees paid by the individual to TDLR or an examination provider approved by TDLR.

6. Do these requirements apply only to programs regulated by TDLR?
No. House Bill 1508 requires all entities or schools that provide educational or training programs that prepare students for occupations that require an occupational license to provide the notice to its enrollees and persons who apply for enrollment in the programs. The information given here simply refers to schools and entities regulated by TDLR. For information regarding a school or educational entity not regulated by TDLR, refer to the agencies that regulate those particular programs.

Whirlpool Foot Spa Cleaning Videos

TDLR has created a web video on cleaning procedures after each client. Videos are available in English, Spanish, and Vietnamese.


Advisory Board Meetings

February 10, 2020

The Advisory Board on Cosmetology met February 10, 2020 in Austin. The agenda and staff reports (PDF) are available online. The meeting was archived and is available on TDLR's YouTube channel.