The State of Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) licenses cosmetologists in Illinois. It also licenses related professions such as cosmetology schools, cosmetology teachers and salons. In order to practice as a cosmetologist in Illinois, it is mandatory to obtain a license. The exact licensing requirements may be different from other states, but the following are generally considered commonly acceptable:

  • Candidate must be at least 16 years of age.
  • Candidate should have received a high school diploma or equivalent.
  • Candidate should have graduated from a state-licensed cosmetology school.

If you wish to join this profession in Illinois, you will have to fulfill the additional criteria presented by the IDFPR. The following guide discusses the entire process of becoming a cosmetologist in Illinois in detail.

How to Become a Cosmetologist in Illinois

In order to be able to work as a cosmetologist in Illinois, candidates must be licensed. To get licensed, certain requirements have to be fulfilled.

  1. Get a High School Diploma

This is the first step towards becoming a licensed cosmetologist in Illinois.

  1. Enroll in and Complete Cosmetology School

Cosmetology programs are usually offered by postsecondary vocational schools or community colleges. Whether you enroll in a cosmetology program within Illinois or outside the state, it must be an approved program. You will have to complete at least 1,500 hours of instructions in cosmetology.

  1. Get Licensed

Once you have completed the educational requirements, you can begin the licensing process. For this, you will need to gather all the relevant documentation, and submit it to the Continental Testing Services, Inc. Following this, you will need to appear for an examination which will test you on multiple aspects of cosmetology, beauty and skin care. Once you have successfully completed the exam, you will be notified by the department and will have to submit a licensing fee to receive your license.

  1. Retain Your License

Cosmetologists must renew their licensure every two years. 14 hours of continuing education units are required in Illinois.

How Much Does a Cosmetologist Make in Illinois

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics groups Cosmetologists with the broader category of Hairdressers, Hairstylists and Cosmetologists. The annual mean income of this category in Illinois for 2018 is listed as $29,900. The following table offers some comparative data that will help you understand this salary figure better.

 

2016 2017 2018
Annual Mean Salary (IL) $27,610 $29,100 $29,900
Annual Mean Salary (US) $29,590 $30,490 $30,190

Source: US Bureau of Labor Statistics

The annual mean salary of this occupational category has increased consistently in the years from 2016 to 2018. However, it must be noted that in all three years, the national mean average salary has remained higher than the salary figures for the state of Illinois.