Louisiana Stylists Must Now Learn to Cut Textured Hair Or They Won’t Get Licensed

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With all of the progress that we’ve seen from the natural hair movement in recent years, it’s crazy to think that in 2021, a large percentage of the stylist community still doesn’t know how to work with textured hair. But, the sad reality is that stylists are rarely, if ever, taught how to style, cut, and color textured hair in cosmetology schools. 

That’s why it’s a pretty big deal that the state of Louisiana is now requiring all stylists to undergo textured hair training in order to get a license. The Louisiana Board of Cosmetology voted unanimously on November 1st to pass a resolution that would require “all licensing exams to include a section on cutting textured hair”, per reporting from KATC. When this resolution goes into effect in June 2022, Louisiana will be the first state in the country to set a standard of this nature, Aveda Global Artistic Director Renee Gadar told KATC

Considering that an estimated 65 percent of the U.S. population has textured hair (i.e. hair that is kinky, curly, or wavy in its natural state), the need for more diversified hair school curriculums has never been more of a pressing concern. In fact, it is why Edwin Neill, Chairman of the Louisiana Board of Cosmetology, felt so compelled to work on changing the state’s licensing requirement. Per reporting from Allure, Neill brought the state’s lack of texture hair training to the cosmetology board’s attention during the summer of 2021 and worked with board member and cosmetology instructor Kevin Martin as well as Gadar to propose the change. 

“There are many salon horror stories about what happens when cosmetologists are not properly educated on working with textured hair,” Nell said in a statement. “Today there are still sometimes disparities in the salon experience between people with textured hair and those with naturally straight hair. We want to ensure that licensed cosmetologists in Louisiana are able to do all types of hair.” 

This change to Louisiana’s licensing requirement comes amid ongoing legislation being enacted to fight against hair discrimination. Several states, including Louisiana, as of this past May, have already passed the CROWN Act (which stands for “Creating a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair ”) — a bill that makes hair-based discrimiantion illegal. While there is still plenty more work to do, great steps have been taken towards making our country more inclusive to those with texture hair. For now,we will have to wait and see if Louisiana’s new texture hair training resolution sparks other states to follow suit with a resolution of their own.

For more information regarding the cosmetology licensing requirements for all states, be sure to visit the National Conference of State Legislatures website

Camille Nzengung
Camille Nzengung
Camille Nzengung is a Features Editor, based in Georgia, covering all things hair at The Tease. You can find her writing about the best hair products, the coolest hair trends, and all the exciting new hair launches.