The U. S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration ranked the field of esthetics, or skin care, as the 19th fastest-growing occupation in Texas from 2008 through 2018. To work as an esthetician in Texas, candidates must gain a professional license. The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation handles the certification of estheticians in the state.
Only candidates who are at least 17 years of age are eligible for esthetician licensing in Texas. Prospective estheticians must have either a high school diploma or GED, or pass a basic reading and math examination that shows that they can benefit from cosmetology training. All applicants must complete a minimum of 750 hours of training from a skin care program approved by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation. More than 400 schools were accredited to offer skin care certification courses in Texas as of April 2011, including private beauty colleges, public junior colleges and public vocational high schools.
After completing the necessary training, prospective estheticians in Texas must pass two examinations. The first test is taken using a computer at PSI Professional Testing Centers in Texas. The exam consists of 90 multiple-choice questions and lasts for up to one hour and 45 minutes. Candidates must score a minimum of 75 percent to pass the test. Those who pass the first test then take a practical examination, which lasts for one hour and 30 minutes. During the practical test, candidates demonstrate their ability to perform facials and hair removal on a live model.
Estheticians who already hold a license to perform skin care treatments in another state can qualify for Texas certification through the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation's reciprocity program. To qualify for the program, candidates must complete an application available from the department's website and submit a copy of their licenses. In addition, they must have the agency or board that issued their license send a letter of confirmation to the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation. Reciprocity applicants don't need to complete any additional training or testing to earn a Texas license.
The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation issues its esthetician certifications for two years. Prior to the expiration of their credentials, candidates must complete an application for renewal, which is available from the department's website. All Texas estheticians must also participate in continuing-education coursework to qualify to renew their credentials. A minimum of six hours of training is necessary during each licensing cycle. Of the six hours, two hours must be completed in sanitation, and two hours must deal with cosmetology laws and regulations. The remaining two hours can relate to any topic dealing with esthetics.