How to get your license: Out-of-state license

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Licensing requirements

  • To get your license as a cosmetologist, barber, manicurist, esthetician, hair design, or master esthetician in Washington, you must:
    • Be at least 17 years of age.
    • Have a current license in good standing in another state or foreign country.
  • After you get your license, you must post it at your work station.

How to get your license

With a current license in another U.S. state

  1. Complete an application.
    • Check ‘reciprocity’ on the form if you took a practical and a written exam to get your license.
      • Application fee is $50 per license.
    • Check ‘out of state’ on the form if you didn't take a practical and a written exam to get your license.
      • Don't send an application fee, you need to take the Washington State exam(s).
  2. Contact the state you are coming from and have them send us a certification of your active license.
  3. Mail your completed application, supporting documents, and a check or money order if required (payable to Department of Licensing) to:
    Cosmetology Program
    Department of Licensing
    PO Box 3856
    Seattle, WA 98124-3856

Note: If you apply for a Washington state license, it won’t affect your license in another state.

With a license from another country

  1. Complete an application.
    • Check the ‘out of country’ box on the form.
  2. Provide proof you have a current license in another country.
    • Include documentation, in English, of any schooling and exams taken. Have a certified translator translate any documentation that isn’t in English.
    • Send copies, not originals.
  3. You might have to take the Washington State exams. For information about exams, see testing information (dlroope.com)​ for your type of license.
  4. Mail your completed application, supporting documents, and a check or money order (payable to Department of Licensing) for the fees to:
    Cosmetology Program
    Department of Licensing
    PO Box 3856
    Seattle, WA 98124-3856

For veterans

U.S. Veterans may be eligible for partial reimbursements of costs. For more information: Education and Training | Licensing and Certification

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