Cosmo and Barbering Permits

Notice on Cosmetology and Barbering Permits for Exam Candidates

 The Board of Registration of Cosmetology and Barbering (“Board”) has approved additional provisions for individuals affected by the temporary unavailability of exams.

The Board is working with its new exam vendor PSI to implement exams later this year. We hope to provide a more definitive timeline on our website soon.

To address individuals who are affected by the unavailability of exams, the Board is providing the following resources:


Graduates of Massachusetts Schools Applying for Initial Licensure

Shop Employed-Students

  • Anyone who has completed their Massachusetts program on or after July 1, 2019, is now eligible to apply for a shop-employed student registration. Applications are available on the Board’s Applications & Forms page here:
  • Shop-employed student registrations for graduates issued prior to September 1, 2022, will now expire on January 1, 2023.
  • Shop-employed students who have completed their school program can provide their full scope of services, but must be supervised by a Board licensee in their discipline. Supervisors must be on the premises of the shop when shop-employed students are working.
  • All appropriate rules in the Board’s Policy on Apprenticeship and Student Employment apply. Business owners, supervisors, and shop-employed students should review the policy, available on the Board’s Policies page here:
  • Electrologists are now eligible for shop-employed student registrations.


Instructor / Lapsed / Out of State / Out of Country Applicants

Temporary Permits

  • Instructor, Lapsed, Out of State, or Out of Country applicants who have been approved by the Board to take the exam are eligible for a temporary permit, which will allow them to work as an instructor or cosmetologist/aesthetician/manicurist/barber/electrologist.
  • Temporary permits may not be used to open a new shop.
  • Out of Country permits and Out of State permits for applicants without a license will require supervision by an appropriately licensed individual.
  • If you submitted your application before April 1, 2022, the Board will automatically mail you a temporary permit. If you do not receive a permit in the mail, please contact the Board at [email protected] or 617-701-8792.
  • If you submitted your application prior to April 1, 2022, or if you are unsure when you submitted your application, please contact the Board to request a temporary permit at [email protected] or 617-701-8792
  • Please review the Board’s Policy on Temporary Permits, available on the Board’s Policies page here:



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