Economic Liberty
Occupational Licensing

Texas Eyebrow Threading Oral Argument

  • IJ joined with eyebrow threading salon owner Ash Patel, along with several other threading salon owners and individual threaders, to challenge the Texas Department of Licensing & Regulation’s requirement that threaders become fully licensed cosmetologists to practice their trade, which involves using a single strand of cotton thread to remove unwanted hair.
  • The Department argued that forcing threaders to spend 750 hours in beauty school—where they would learn nothing about threading—was necessary to protect public health and safety. IJ argued that the requirement was unnecessary, and unnecessarily burdensome, and that it violated threaders’ right to work in the occupation of their choosing without unreasonable governmental interference.
  • In June 2015, in a 6-3 decision, the Texas Supreme Court ruled for IJ and our clients, finding it unconstitutionally irrational to require hundreds of hours of irrelevant training for a simple skill like eyebrow threading. The court made history by parting ways with federal jurisprudence and ruling that Texas courts must weigh both the reasonableness of economic regulations and the burden those regulations impose on ordinary people.
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