A specified number of training hours must be completed at an approved school, before examinations can be undertaken and licenses then awarded.
Training Requirements For Specializations
How To Complete Your Training Through An Apprenticeship
In order to complete your training through an apprenticeship, the following requirements apply:
It is not possible to do an apprenticeship as a manicurist/waxer or an esthetician/manicurist; this training must be undertaken at an institution.
After you have completed your training through a school or an apprenticeship, you have a combined responsibility with your instructor to apply for your exam within 120 days. If you have completed an apprenticeship, your sponsor must certify your hours within 120 days of your completion date.
There are four different testing locations in Alabama where it is possible to complete your written and practical exams. The practical exams are held every month at each testing location, and the application deadline is three to four weeks before each examination date. Practical exams are given only in English, however it is possible to take the written exam in Korean, Vietnamese or Spanish.
Registering For The Examinations
To register for the examinations, you must provide two forms of signature bearing identification which must have your legal first and last name. They must be an original form of identification as photocopies will not be accepted.
The primary form of identification should be a government issued ID with your photograph and signature: either a US passport, US military ID card, state issued driver’s license, state issued ID card or a US government issued Alien Registration Card.
The secondary form of identification must be either a signed credit card, a social security card or a US issued birth certificate.
As well as these two forms of identification, you will be required to provide a passport photo for the practical examination. This photo must be two inches squared, color, recent, and be taken front on to show your head and shoulders.
What Is Reciprocity?
Reciprocity is the process of transferring or exchanging your license or your training hours from a different state to the state of Alabama, in order to be able to legally work in Alabama.
How To Apply For An Alabama License Through Reciprocity
You can transfer a license from another state to Alabama by following these steps:
How To Transfer Your License From Alabama To Another State
To transfer your license from Alabama to another state, the following must be completed:
- You must request in writing that the State Board sends a letter of certification to the state you are moving to
- To do this you can print and complete the License Certification Request Form
- You need to include a copy of your social security card, current license for Alabama and current driver’s license with this request
- For each certification request you must pay a $25 fee by money order
How To Transfer Your License To Alabama If You Are Licensed Overseas
The transfer of an overseas license requires contacting the state board to receive the correct application. You will need to successfully complete both written and practical examinations to receive your license for Alabama. The fee for this process is $100 plus the $75 written exam fee, which is only payable by money order.
The Process For Opening A New Shop
If you would like to open a new shop in Alabama you will need to complete the new shop application, which can be found on the state board website.
This application has the following requirements:
- The application must be received by the Board 30 days before the shop is due to open
- The fee of $150 must be paid by cashier’s check, shop check or money order only
- The application must include copies of the owner’s current driver’s license and social security card
- The application must include a copy of a Business License or a Statement by Authority if it is not zoned
- The shop needs to be inspected before it opens for business
- A relocation to a different address needs a new license and zoning statement
- An Ownership Change also requires a new license
General Guidelines For New Shops
New shops in Alabama State must adhere to the following guidelines:
- A shop must be licensed with the State Board is cosmetology services are performed, and/or any licencees of the State Board are performing cosmetology services
- All licensees are only able to perform services applicable to their personal license specialization
- All trash receptacles and hampers for towels need to be covered
- All implements must be cleaned, disinfected and stored correctly
- Dirty implements must be stored separately from clean ones, in clearly labelled containers
- All shops will be inspected to see if their equipment relates directly to the services that are offered
- Cosmetology shops should have a form of hair drying facility; this can be a drying chair or simply a blow dryer
- Any retail areas in a new shop do not need to be complete before the initial inspection, however all equipment used for services must be in place
- Any shops that are part of a residence must have a separate entrance from any living areas, and must also contain their own restroom facility
- There must be a full length wall or doors that separates the shop area from the living quarters
When you open a new shop, you are required to complete the application and necessary payment, ensure your equipment for the services you are providing is placed correctly in the shop, and ensure you have correct compliance with any local building or license ordinances.
These guidelines for sanitizing and disinfecting non electrical equipment and tools are found in the Milady’s Standard Cosmetology book, and are recommended for following:
- Tools and equipment should be cleaned to remove hair, residue and visible matter
- They should be thoroughly rinsed and patted dry using a clean towel
- Implements should be immersed in a correctly mixed solution of disinfectant, made according to the manufacturer’s instructions
- Implements should be removed with a basket, tongs or gloves to avoid chemicals coming into contact with the skin
- Disinfected items should be stored in a sanitary way between uses in a clean container or drawer
- You should never seal implements in a closed container which is airtight, as this can result in bacterial growth when the items are not totally dry
Maintaining Your License
In order to maintain your license with the Alabama State Board of Cosmetology, you must renew it every two years. This is to happen during your birth month in odd numbered years for cosmetologists, estheticians, manicurists, manicurists/waxers and natural hair stylists. For barbers, licenses must be renewed during your birth month in even numbered years.
It is possible to renew your license online, or to print a renewal form and post it back with the listed requirements. A $50 late fee applies for any license renewals postmarked after the last day of your birth month.
If you are wishing to renew a license that has been expired for more than four years, you must retake the practical examination for your specialization, and also pay back fees from the date that your license expired.
If you are renewing a school or shop license, this must be done by 31st October in an odd numbered year, as these licenses all expire on 30th September. If your renewal is postmarked later than 31st October, you will have to pay a $50 late fee.