Judge Peels Back Hair Care Regulations For Nevada Makeup Artistry Instructors and Schools; Leaves Skin Care Scheme Intact

John Kramer
John Kramer · August 6, 2014

Arlington, Va.—The Institute for Justice will appeal today’s ruling by a federal judge paring back Nevada’s cosmetology requirements for two Las Vegas makeup artistry instructors, but leaving in place onerous and irrelevant regulations regarding skin care. Under today’s ruling, two makeup artistry instructors challenging the state’s cosmetology licensing scheme will not have to obtain licenses to teach hair care. But they will still have to obtain skin care instructor licenses and comply with facility regulations related to skin care.

“While the court did scale back the hair care regulations that apply to makeup artistry instructors and schools, today’s ruling is a loss for makeup artistry instructors and schools and a loss of liberty for those who speak for a living,” explained Tim Keller, managing attorney of the Institute for Justice’s Arizona office. “Requiring makeup artistry schools to hire only licensed skin care instructors and to teach their students skin care techniques, such as how to perform facials and chemical peels, makes no sense because those skills are totally unrelated to applying makeup.”

Under Nevada law, makeup artists who work in the entertainment and retail industries are recognized as performing different services from those who do skin care and are specifically exempt from the state’s skin care licensing scheme. Yet, under today’s ruling, those who want to teach others how to apply makeup must obtain a government-issued skin care instructors license and they must teach only in a licensed skin care school that is fully equipped with unnecessary equipment that is relevant only to teaching skin care, such as mannequins, time clocks, and styling chairs.

As a result of today’s ruling, experienced makeup artists like the plaintiffs in this case, Lissette Waugh and Wendy Robin, could face fines of up to $2,000 for doing nothing more than teaching makeup artistry without a skin care instructor’s license and not operating their makeup artistry schools as state-licensed skin care schools. Lissette and Wendy are makeup artists with over 40 years of combined experience. Both women opened up their own makeup artistry schools to train the next generation of makeup artists in the art and artistry of applying makeup for the entertainment and retail industries.

“This ruling jeopardizes my entire business,” explained Lissette, owner and operator of the L Makeup Institute. “I do not teach and do not want to teach skin care. I just want to teach people how to perform makeup artistry, which is something that any person in Nevada can do without first having to become a state-licensed skin care worker.”

“On appeal, the Institute for Justice will vindicate Lissette and Wendy’s right to teach makeup artistry for a living without first having to obtain a government permission slip to speak,” declared Keller.