• Hair Braiding De-Regulation FAQs

    1. What does the de-regulation mean?   
    2. Am I going to get my application fee back?   
    3. Am I going to receive a refund for the classes or exam?  
    4. Why did Virginia decide to de-regulate?  
    5. Who will monitor hair braiding now?    


    What does the de-regulation mean? 

    • As of July 1, 2012, no state credentials are required to perform hair braiding.  
    • Hair braiding is now an un-regulated profession, meaning anyone can braid hair regardless of education or experience. 
    • A cosmetology license is still be required for other hair treatments, such as curling, waving, cleansing, and cutting. 


    Am I going to get my application fee back?  

    • The Board will refund licensing and renewal fees paid over the past two years (the current license cycle) on a pro-rated basis. The pro-rated refund is calculated based on how many months are left unexpired on your license after July 1, 2012. Reinstatement fees will not be refunded. 
    • Please allow 12-16 weeks after July 1 to receive your refund. Payments made by check will be refunded by check from the Treasurer of Virginia, mailed to the address of record on file with the Board. Payments made by credit card will be refunded to the card used (a check will be mailed if the card is no longer valid). Refund processing involves other de-regulated professions and is accomplished in batches, and we are not able to provide the status of individual refunds. 


    Am I going to receive a refund for the classes or exam?  

    • Individuals did receive schooling in exchange for the course fees, so education providers are not expected to refund those fees. 
    • The exam vendor incurred costs in administering the exam, so it is not expected to refund those fees.  
    • The Board has no authority to require education providers or the exam vendor to refund fees.  


    Why did Virginia decide to de-regulate?  

    • After a comprehensive review across state government, Governor McDonnell’s Commission on Government Reform and Restructuring recommended de-regulation of the hair braiding profession. 
    • Prior to 2004, state law required individuals offering hair braiding services to hold a full cosmetology license. The General Assembly changed that law to lessen the burden on hair braiders, by establishing the separate braiding-only license category.  
    • Based on complaints, no evidence of public harm supported the continued regulation of hair braiding. The General Assembly determined Virginia’s regulatory program is unnecessary and endorsed the Commission’s de-regulation recommendation. 


     Who will monitor hair braiding now?  

    • Local health departments retain the ability to inspect facilities from a health and sanitation perspective.