Working in Florida — Cosmetology License Requirements

If you have a license in another state and wish to practice in Florida, you may be eligible for a Florida license by endorsement. Your eligibility and steps you need to take depend on what licensure you are looking for and what requirements the state in which you received your license has.

Cosmetology Applicants

To receive a Florida cosmetology license, applicants must have completed 1,200 school hours and passed a licensing exam. If you meet those requirements, you will not have to take the Florida cosmetology exam. If the state where you hold your license has requirements that are equal to or more intensive than Florida's, you may be eligible to receive a Florida license by endorsement without taking any additional classes or sitting for an exam, even if you originally took your original classes abroad.

If you are licensed (current and active) in another state that requires 1,000 school hours, you have two options:

  • Attend any cosmetology school (inside or outside of Florida) to take the additional 200 hours of education to qualify for endorsement, or
  • You may forego the additional 200 hours of education and take the Florida cosmetology exam. This option requires you to have held your license for at least one year. If you fail the exam twice, you will need to take 40 remedial hours before you can take the exam again. If you fail the exam three times, you will need to take 80 remedial hours before you can take the exam again.

To complete your endorsement license 4-hour HIV/AIDs training requirement, visit our cosmetology continuing education page.

To apply for an endorsement license, visit the Florida Board of Cosmetology's Application Center.

If your cosmetology license is from another country, you are not eligible to receive a license through endorsement. You will need to apply by examination.

Apprenticeship licenses and apprenticeship education are not eligible for endorsement.

Registrant (Facial Specialists, Nail Specialists, Full Specialists) Applicants

To be eligible for registration by endorsement in Florida, you must have a current and active registration or license in another state, and that state must have requirements that are equal to or more intensive than Florida's requirements, which are as follows:

  • Nail specialist — 240 school hours
  • Facial specialist — 260 school hours
  • Full specialist — 500 school hours (240 nail hours plus 260 facial hours)

Hair braiders, hair wrappers, body wrappers, and apprenticeship licensees are not eligible for endorsements. Specialists from out of the country are also not eligible for endorsements. Everyone matching these descriptions will need to complete a new application and meet all the training requirements to practice in the state of Florida.

If you have some school hours completed, you can have any Florida cosmetology school evaluate your previous training. They can grant credit hours based on that training toward fulfilling the Florida school requirements. Some, all, or none of your previous school hours may be counted toward this credit.