BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – A change to the Louisiana State Board of Cosmetology licensing exam will require cosmetology students to learn how to cut and style textured hair.
On Nov. 1 the board passed the resolution hoping to make hair and beauty schools in the state more inclusive.
Textured hair refers to hair that is kinky, curly, or wavy in its natural state — which is typically found on people of color.
A set of friends and hairstylists, Jasmine Haynes and Troyann Freeman, said doing hair is not just a job, but their passion. The pair spent thousands of dollars on beauty school but did not learn how to do their own hair.
“I only learned a little bit of the side that had to do with the type of hair that I actually had so I left having to get continuing education because I didn’t feel like I was prepared,” said Haynes.
“It was 500 additional hours that I had to do and these are styles that I’m already doing so I’m knowledgeable of it, but just for me to have the licensing for it I had to do additional schooling,” said Freeman.
The State Board of Cosmetology voted unanimously to implement the change. It’s a change Chairman of the Louisiana State Board of Cosmetology Edwin Neill calls a gamechanger.
“65 percent of the population has textured hair defined as wavy, curly or coily hair. We don’t want people to be turned away at a salon because the salon can’t do their type of hair. That’s not what anybody wants so this is a step in the right direction,” said Neill.
Haynes and Freeman said they hope this move can undo racist beauty standards, proving all hair can be beautiful.
“Being a hairstylist you need to know how to work with all different curl patterns,” said Freeman.
“It’s time for people to start accepting us for who we are that the things that we do that are different or eccentric… it’s not ghetto. It’s our culture,” said Haynes.
Louisiana is the first state to implement the changes for the Cosmetology Board exam and it will take effect in June of 2022.