IL Cosmetology License Renewal Requirements & FAQ

IL Cosmetology License Renewal Requirements & FAQ

License Renewal Requirements

Maintaining your Illinois cosmetology license is important for a variety of reasons:

  • Professional development
  • Safety and protection of clients & professionals
  • Stay on top of industry and consumer trends
  • Personal advancement
  • Meeting state requirements
cosmetology license illinois

Cosmetology License Renewal Requirements

Cosmetologists licensed in Illinois are required to complete 14 CEU hours every 2 years to maintain licensure.

Continuing Education Exemption for Cosmetologists

The Barber, Cosmetology, Esthetics, Hair Braiding, and Nail Technology Act of 1985 was recently amended to remove the Continuing Education Exemption for cosmetologists, cosmetology teachers, and cosmetology clinic teachers.

Starting with the 2017 license renewal application all cosmetologists, cosmetology teachers and cosmetology clinic teachers regardless of age and years of experience must complete the continuing education requirements prior to submitting their renewal application.

Illinois Cosmetology License Renewal

Frequently Asked Questions:

When does my license expire?
Illinois cosmetologist licenses expire September 30th of each odd-numbered year and may be renewed within the month prior to expiration.

How do I renew my license?
First, make sure it’s a renewal year and you’ve complied with the continuing education requirements. Second, visit and click on the “License Renewals” button. Follow the online instructions under “Renewals for Individuals” for “Online Credit Card Renewals”. Upon completion, you should receive a confirmation e-mail within a couple days.

How much does license renewal cost?
Currently, the State of Illinois charges $50 per two-year renewal period. The fee is payable online via Visa, MasterCard, or Discover credit/debit cards.

How often do I have to renew my Illinois cosmetologist license?
Your cosmetologist license needs to be renewed every two (2) years. In Illinois, cosmetologist licenses are renewed in odd numbered years (e.g. 2015, 2017, 2019, etc.). You do not have to meet the continuing education requirements for your first renewal cycle after license issuance.

What are CEUs?
CEU stands for Continuing Education Unit. One CEU = one hour of approved continuing education classes.

How many CEUs do I need & where can I get them?
Cosmetologists in Illinois are required to complete 14 CEUs every two years. You can take continuing education classes with Estelle, product manufacturers, equipment providers, online providers, trade shows, and more. Be sure to verify that the provider is approved by the State of Illinois to ensure that the CEUs will count. Save the certificate provided by the C.E. sponsor as proof of attendance.

How much to continuing education classes cost?
Pricing will vary depending on the provider and course topic and typically starts at $15/hour. Be sure to research class options and find something you’re interested in learning more about. Esthetics and Corrective Esthetics topics can be excellent options for cosmetologists looking to enhance their skill set.

Where can I find a list of C.E. providers?
A list of state-approved continuing education (C.E.) sponsors can be found on the IDFPR website.

Paperless Licensing in Illinois

Is it true that the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) is no longer sending out the traditional paper licenses?
Yes, IDFPR is no longer mailing paper licenses to any professionals in Illinois in order to save costs and reduce environmental impact.

How will I get my license from now on?
You may obtain your license(s) by visiting

How can my employer verify the status of my license?
You may visit to print a copy of your license and provide it to your employer. Alternatively, your employer may use the License Lookup tool to verify licensure electronically.

Licensed Estheticians and Cosmetologists in Illinois:

Sign up for our Continuing Education e-mail list to stay informed!

For more information on our continuing education classes for cosmetology in Illinois, please call us at 847.329.9174 or visit our Continuing Education page.