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How to Become a Licensed Esthetician in Michigan

While Michigan is commonly known for its successful auto, aviation, and office furniture industries, it also has a very successful beauty industry. There are many opportunities for employment and advancement for those wanting to work in the cosmetology field in this state.

If you are considering a career as a licensed esthetician in the state of Michigan, there are many important details and steps to be aware of. Keep reading this article to find out exactly what they are.

Esthetician License Requirements and Training Schools in Michigan

Step 1: Complete a State Approved Esthetics Program or Apprenticeship

The Michigan Cosmetology Licensing Board is the governmental department that handles the licensing and practice of estheticians in the state.

They require individuals applying for an esthetician license to:

  • Be at least 17 years old
  • Be of good moral character
  • Complete the 9th grade or higher

Licensees must also complete 400 hours of esthetics training at a licensed school of cosmetology or complete a 6-month apprenticeship under the supervision of a licensed cosmetologist.

Your esthetics education and training will need to include:

  • Facials
  • Contraindications for services
  • Waxing, threading, and hair removal
  • Make-up applications and color theory
  • Microbiology and infection control procedures
  • Skin care products

Other topics and areas of study can be found on the NIC website.

Let Esthetician Schooling Connect You With a High Quality Esthetician School in Your Area!

Are you ready to take the next step and begin your career as a well-paid esthetician? Esthetician Schooling has partnered with some of the best esthetician schools in the nation.  Our huge network of nationally recognized esthetician schools will make it easy for you to find the right school and get started training immediately!

The beauty schools in our network contain one or more of the following high quality standards:

  • State Board Recognition
  • NACCAS Accreditation
  • Student Financial Aid
  • Job Placement Assistance for Those Who Qualify

To get started, simply fill out the quick 1-minute application below.


Step 2: Complete and Submit the Esthetician Application for Examination

If you meet the above requirements, you can apply for a Michigan esthetician license by completing the online application using the MyLicense licensing portal. You will also be required to pay a $39 application fee. Feel free to read over the Michigan Cosmetology Licensing Guide for more details about applying for your esthetician license online.

While the Michigan Cosmetology Licensing Board oversees the licensing of estheticians, they have contracted PSI Services LLC to administer the theory and practical esthetics exams.

Once you receive your examination eligibility notice from the Michigan State Board, it is your responsibility to schedule and pay for your exams. you must complete the following steps:

  1. Read over the Candidate Information Bulletin for details about the exams
  2. Complete and submit the Michigan Esthetician Examination Registration Form (located at the end of the bulletin)
  3. If you are a first-time applicant, your school must complete the Affidavit section of the form (located on page 2 of the form)
  4. Schedule your exams by registering with PSI either online or by phone (follow the instructions below)
  5. Pay the $161 examination fee using your credit card or any other accepted form of payment listed on the form

You may fax your completed form to (702) 932-2666. Be sure to write the following information on the fax cover sheet:

PSI Licensure: Certification
ATTN: Examination Registration MI COSMO

If you wish to mail your completed form, along with your fee payment, use the following postal address:

PSI Licensure: Certification
ATTN: Examination Registration MI COSMO
3210 E. Tropicana Avenue
Las Vegas, NV 89121

If you only need to take the theory exam, the fee is $91. If you only need to take the practical exam, the fee is $91. The fees are the same if you must retake the exams.

Please note, any exam fees that have been paid will be forfeited if you do not test within 1 year of the date the payment is received by PSI. You must pass both the practical and theory examinations within one year from the date of passing the practical portion.\


Registering for Your Exams

You can register for both examinations by going here and doing the following:

  1. Select “Government/State Licensing Agencies” from the Select Organization drop-down menu.
  2. Select “Michigan” from the Jurisdiction drop down menu (you may have to scroll down the menu).
  3. Select “MI Cosmetology and Barbers” from the Select Account drop down menu.
  4. Click the “MI ESTHETICIAN” link in the Classification menu.
  5. After the webpage loads, click the “Sign In or Create an Account” button and either sign in or create a new account.

You also have the option of scheduling your exam over the phone by calling a PSI representative toll-free at 1-800-733-9267 (Monday through Friday from 7:30 AM to 8:00 PM EST and Saturday from 11:00 AM to 5:00 PM EST).

You can also schedule your theory exam using PSI’s Interactive Voice Response System during non business hours at 1-800-733-

If you must reschedule your theory exam, you can do so without forfeiting your fee by contacting PSI at least 2 business days prior to your scheduled exam date by calling1-800-733-9267 and using the automated system.

More information about the examinations and how to register can be found in the Candidate Information Bulletin.


Step 3: Take and Pass the Theory and Practical Esthetician Examinations

Preparing for the Theory and Practical Exams

The National-Interstate Council of State Boards of Cosmetology (NIC) recommends the following reference materials to help you prepare for and pass the theory (written) and practical esthetics exams, which can be purchased at discounted prices on Amazon:

We also recommend that you purchase and study the following books in preparation for your exams:


What to Bring to Your Exams

For both the theory (written) and practical esthetician exams, you should arrive at the testing center at least 30 minutes prior to the scheduled exam time. This will give you time to go through the proper registration procedures. It is important to note that if you are late, you will not be allowed to test and you will be forced to reschedule and forfeit your registration fee.

When you arrive, you will have your picture taken. Be sure to bring one form of identification such as a valid driver’s license or another government-issued form of identification. More information about acceptable forms of ID can be found on page 4 of the Candidate Information Bulletin.


The Esthetics Theory Exam

The theory (written) exam has 100 multiple choice questions. You will have a total of 2 hours to complete the examination. The test outline is as follows:

Sanitation, Disinfection and Safety (18%)

  1. Safe working conditions and practices
  2. Sanitation and Disinfection
  3. Infectious diseases and pathogens
  4. Standard Precautions for exposure incidents
  5. Skin and hair anatomy and physiology

Client Consultation and Analysis (20%)

  1. Client Consultation form
  2. Skin analysis on desired outcomes
  3. Effects of nutrition and aging

Basic Facial Treatments (29%)

  1. Preparation of skin for facial
  2. Procedures for skin types
  3. Products (astringents, toners, moisturizers, masks)
  4. Exfoliation
  5. Extractions
  6. Facial massage manipulations
  7. Appliances and equipment (steamer, wood’s lamp,
    magnifying lens)

Advanced Facial Treatments (5%)

  1. Chemical peel
  2. Disincrustation
  3. Galvanic current
  4. High frequency
  5. Vacuuming
  6. Electric mask
  7. Light therapy

Hair Removal (10%)

  1. Materials, implements, and supplies
  2. Waxing
  3. Tweezing

Facial Makeup (5%)

  1. Makeup product selection
  2. Color Theory
  3. Makeup application and removal
  4. Artificial Eyelashes

Body Treatments (3%)

  1. Procedural steps of service
  2. Product selection
  3. Product Removal

Licensing (10%)

  1. Meeting licensure requirements
  2. License renewal a. Date
  3. Displaying the license – Researched
  4. Change of address and name
  5. Board responsibilities and disciplinary actions

You must score at least a 70% to pass the theory exam. You will receive your exam results immediately after you have completed the exam.


The Esthetics Practical Exam

You will have 95 minutes to complete the practical esthetician exam. You are required to bring a model who is wearing eye makeup and lipstick to the exam. You are also required to bring your own supplies and equipment that fall within the list and guidelines on page 8 of the Candidate Information Bulletin. Model requirements can be found on the same page.

The practical exam outline is as follows:

  • Pre-Exam Set Up and Disinfection
    Time Allowed: 15 minutes
  • Skin Cleansing Service
    Time Allowed: 15 minutes
  • Face Steaming Service (Model)
    Time Allowed: 5 minutes
  • Face Massaging Service (Model)
    Time Allowed: 15 minutes
  • Mask and Moisturizing Service (Model)
    Time Allowed: 15 minutes
  • Eyebrow Arch Service Using Tweezers (Model)
    Time Allowed: 10 minutes
  • Eyebrow Arch Service Using Mock Cold Wax (Model)
    Time Allowed: 10 minutes
  • End of Exam Disinfection
    Time Allowed: 10 minutes

The practical exam has a total of 58 points. You must score at least a 75% in order to pass the exam.

Once you have met all of the Michigan esthetician licensure requirements and have passed both the theory and practical exams, you will automatically be issued a license by the State Board.


Step 4: Renew Your MI Esthetician License Every Two Years

Your Michigan esthetician license must be renewed every two years by August 31st. You will need to renew online using an e-check, credit card, or debit card. There is a $48 fee for renewal. More information about the license renewal process can be found here.

Continuing education credits are not required by the state of Michigan for your renewal.


Esthetician License Reciprocity in Michigan

If you hold an esthetician license in another state, you may be able to receive a Michigan license if you have experience and training that is nearly equal to Michigan’s licensing requirements.

The state of Michigan also allows licensed work experience to be substituted for training hours at a ratio of 100 hours for every 6 months of experience. The fee for license via reciprocity is $39 and you must complete the Reciprocal Esthetician License Application.

Be sure to:

  1. Complete the application in full
  2. Sign and date the application
  3. Pay the $39 non-refundable application fee
  4. Make your check or money order payable to the State of Michigan

Once you have completed the steps above, mail your application and payment to:

Bureau of Professional Licensing
P.O. Box 30244
Lansing, MI 48909

If you have any questions about the application process, simply call (517) 241-9288 and a customer service assistant will help you.


Michigan State Board of Cosmetology Contact Information

Michigan Cosmetology Licensing Board
Dept of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs
611 W. Ottawa Street
Lansing, MI 48933
Phone: 517-373-1820


Michigan Theory and Practical Exam Locations

Below is a map showing the locations of the theory and practical exams administered by PSI Services. Before you arrive at a PSI test center, please be sure to call PSI Services toll-free at 1-800-733-9267 to confirm the test center’s current address and inquire about their hours of operation.


Map of Theory and Practical Exam Locations in Michigan

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