Wisconsin Cosmetology License

Wisconsin Cosmetology License

The career of a cosmetologist is one of the most interesting and creative majors. A cosmetologist gets to express his/her talent every day. Moreover, they gain experience on a daily basis. Thus, the more your work, the more experienced you will be.

In the state of Wisconsin, you can obtain your cosmetology license providing that you undergo the following steps.

How do I get my cosmetology license in Wisconsin?

Cosmetology program

Learning the basics is always the very first step. To qualify for a cosmetologist in Wisconsin, you must, first of all, 1550 hours of an approved cosmetology program/training.

In case you do not want or cannot attend a beauty school to complete the program, there is another option for you.

You can complete apprenticeship, which must contain at least 4,000 hours of theory and practical cosmetology knowledge.

If you want to know what topics you will be exploring for yourself, then check this list of cosmetology program subjects:

  • Personal development
  • Hygiene
  • Grooming
  • Sterilization
  • Sanitation
  • Cosmetology equipment and tools
  • Anatomy
  • Physiology
  • Hair cutting and styling
  • Straightening and relaxing
  • Manicuring and nail enhancements
  • Pedicuring
  • Product knowledge
  • Business information
  • Laws
  • Rules
  • Professional ethics


When you meet the educational standards of becoming a licensed cosmetologist, you must schedule an appointment for taking examinations. Follow this link to apply for the exams, as well as the cosmetology license.

The thing is that the exam application will also serve as the application for obtaining your cosmetology license in Wisconsin.

Note that you may also be eligible to apply for a temporary license in order to gain experience by working as a cosmetologist for six months while waiting for the exams.

As we already mentioned, you will need to take two examinations.

Theory Examination

The theory exam will test your knowledge of state rules/regulations related to the cosmetology practice in Wisconsin. It will also give you 120 questions on cosmetology safety, sanitation, rules, and regulations, trichology, shampooing, styling, hair coloring, bleaching, tinting, chemical relaxing, esthetics and nails.

Practical examination

Secondly comes the practical exam, which is to test your practical skills of cosmetology. During this exam, you will be asked to perform different cosmetology services on a mannequin.

They will test your skills of safety and infection control, hair cutting, coloring, bleaching, styling, perms, esthetics, manicure and skin care.

In case you do not know what products, tools and materials to have with you on the examination day, check this list.

How do I renew my cosmetology license in Wisconsin?

When your cosmetology license is due to expire, you must renew it to be able to practice cosmetology, again.

You can renew it very easily if you follow this link.

Note that you should pay $82 for renewal. If you want to renew your expired license, you will need to pay $25 additional fee.

Contact Information

Wisconsin Dept. of Regulations & Licensing
Barbering & Cosmetology Examining Board

P.O. Box 8935
Madison, WI 53708

What licenses are available for Wisconsin cosmetologists?

The state of Wisconsin issues licenses for the following categories:

  • Practitioner
  • Manicurist
  • Esthetician
  • Electrologist
Seda S

Seda S

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