State Updates Regarding COVID-19

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COVID-19 Updates

for the Skin Care Profession

Information for ASCP Members on Local and State Shutdown Orders

As you know, cities and states across the country are calling for non-essential business shutdowns in order to curb the spread of COVID-10. Washington state, New York, and Colorado state are leading the way at this point. Esthetics, cosmetology, and massage therapy services are included in these mandates.

If you are in a state with one of these orders in effect, please pause your practice. Your ASCP liability insurance coverage includes an “illegal acts” exclusion of coverage, so if someone is still practicing during these executive orders, they are not covered.

For instance, the Colorado Department of Public Health Public Health Order of March 19, 2020 mandates that licensees “close to entry, exit, use, and occupancy by members of the public through April 30, 2020.” The order strongly advises people to adhere to social distancing parameters and not invite others in their home as a result of this temporary shutdown. Orders such as these are deemed necessary to control any potential transmission of disease to others and avoid overwhelming healthcare systems.

We recommend you continue to communicate with your clients via email and social media. Supportive messages go a long way to creating and sustaining community right now.

This situation is changing hourly on a state-by-state basis. Please email to share updates from your state and local governments. We will keep you informed in this space on advisories, relief packages, and possible government business relief funding as we move forward—together. Please stay safe and healthy.

Current updates on state shutdowns:


May 15: Governor Kay Ivey on issued an amended Safer at Home Order, expanding the list of businesses permitted to reopen. Close-contact service providers including barbershops, hair salons, waxing and threading salons, nail salons and spas, and and massage therapy establishments and services may reopen May 11, 2020, but must comply with the rules in the linked document on p. 3.

May 4: Governor Ivey announced a Safer At Home Executive Order, marking the beginning of a gradual process to reopen to state. Close contact services (barber shops, hair salons, waxing salons, threading salons, nail salons and spas, and massage therapy establishments and services) remain closed until May 15, 2020. A decision will be made to either extend or relax the order.

March 27: As a result of the COVID-19 interruptions of study, the Alabama Board of Cosmetology and Barbering (ABOCB) will accept course work for distance-learning programs beginning March 16, 2020, through April 13, 2020, for clock hour courses for theory instruction that lead to licensure with ABOCB. Effective at the close of business on March 19, 2020, all written and practical exam testing sites will be closed until April 13, 2020. PSI is allowing candidates to reschedule exams at no additional charge. Please contact PSI at 833-333-4751 or 800-733-9267 to reschedule your exam.

March 19: The Jefferson County Department of Health on Thursday ordered the closing of all non-essential businesses and services due to the risk of infection by COVID-19 ( Non-essential services include:

  • Entertainment, including night clubs, bowling alleys, arcades, racetracks, indoor children’s play places, pool halls, adult gaming and entertainment venues
  • Recreation facilities, including gyms and fitness centers, swimming pools and spas, excluding licensed physical therapy services
  • Nail salons and spas
  • Concert venues and auditoriums, theaters
  • Tourist attractions (including museums, planetariums, parades)
  • Body art facilities and tattoo services
  • Tanning salons
  • Massage businesses
  • Waxing salons/threading salons
  • Museums and galleries
  • Performing arts centers/events/rehearsals
  • Social clubs, casinos
  • Proms, formals, and other similar events 
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April 22: Governor Dunleavy issued Health Mandate 016, providing guidance for the phased reopening of the state of Alaska and establishes conditions for Phase I. Per the Mandate, hair salons and hairdressers, day spas and estheticians, nail salons and manicurists, and barbershops and barbers fall under "personal care services" that may reopen. Phase I offers strict reopening guidelines for personal care service providers who may resume practice as of April 24, 2020, if they meet the following requirements.

March 27: Hairdressers, barbers, estheticians, manicurists, instructors, apprentices, and students: please be aware that 25% of theory training may be done in a distance education setting. Please refer to your specific curriculum for more information.

March 26: The Governor has ordered all massage therapy locations, day spas, Rolfing, reiki, acupuncture, acupressure, and similar services closed.

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May 14: Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that businesses offering barbering, cosmetology, medical spa, and massage therapy services may reopen May 6, 2020, as long as owners follow specific guidelines.

April 21: Kansas Governor Laura Kelly issued Executive Order No. 20-24 on April 14, 2020, extending the statewide stay at home order through May 3, 2020.

March 26: At this time the Governor has mandated closure of cosmetology establishments and massage therapy clinics. Establishments and clinics should close by 12:00 p.m. March 25, 2020. During the public health emergency, all approved continuing education courses, whether approved for hands-on or online, can be administered online. All required 18 hours of continuing education can be obtained through online courses. Until the public health emergency is lifted, one of the following guidelines can be used for license renewals: Renewals can be mailed in without the required 18 hours of continuing education; however, the hours should be submitted within 90 days after the conclusion of the public health emergency. Renewals can be deferred for 90 days past expiration without late fee penalties after the conclusion of the public health emergency.

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May 14: Governor Ducey signed Executive Order 2020-36 allowing all businesses, including massage therapy to open as of May 16 at 12:00 am. Businesses are required to establish policies based on CDC, DOL, OSHA, and ADHS protocols that include intensifying cleaning, disinfection, and ventilation practices; monitoring for sickness; physical distancing; PPE; and no more than 10 people congregating in an area.

May 8: Governor Ducey signed Executive Order 2020-34 on May 8, 2020, which allows barbers and cosmetologists to return to practice, providing they developed protocols that include face coverings for practitioners/employees/clients and do not allow walk-in appointments. Guidance can also be found on the Arizona Board of Cosmetology web page.

April 3: Arizona Governor Doug Ducey signed Executive Order 2020-18 on March 30, 2020. The "Stay home, Stay healthy, Stay connected" order begins March 31, 2020 until April 30, 2020. Businesses and entities that remain open shall implement rules and procedures that facilitate physical distancing and spacing of individuals of at least six feet. Non-essential businesses may continue to operate activities that do not require in-person, on-site transactions.

March 27: Arizona Governor Doug Ducey signed Executive Order 2020-17 on March 26, 2020. The order states: "A state agency or board that licenses individuals or entities as indicated herein shall: a) defer requirements to renew licenses that have an expiration date between March 1, 2020, and September 1, 2020, by six months from the expiration date, unless those requirements can be completed online; b) Defer requirements to complete continuing education by six months, unless those requirements can be completed online or due to the nature of the license is not practical; c) suspend any rules that prevent or limit the amount of online or alternative learning hours permitted to issue or renew a license; d) make every attempt to implement electronic or remote format examinations for licensure where feasible; any fees required to be collected by the state agency or board may be waived." This order applies to the following boards: the Board of Barbers, the Board of Cosmetology, and the Board of Massage Therapy. PDF Download

March 25: Governor Doug Ducey today issued an executive order clarifying businesses and operations deemed “essential” by the state and providing certainty to business owners, employees, and families. The order is a proactive and administrative measure to ensure consistent guidance across the state. It does not appear to include cosmetology or massage therapy services in the list of essential services; please reference link for complete list.

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May 7: California's Update on the RoadMap Forward indicates that Personal Services will be open in Stage 3. Counties will also be able to work with the state to reopen sooner. More information should be available in the coming week. Read the update here.

May 6: Reports from May 4 indicate the state may be moving toward county by county regulation. As of May 5, the state closure of massage therapy, esthetics, and cosmetology still applies indefinitely until a new order is issued. It does appear that we should know more about county regulations and the Phase 2 opening by May 8.

March 19: The California State Public Health Officer and Director of the California Department of Public Health is ordering all individuals living in the State of California to stay home or at their place of residence, except as needed to maintain continuity of operation of the federal critical infrastructure sectors, critical government services, schools, childcare, and construction, including housing construction.

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April 28: We are in consistent communication with DORA, and information is being released on a daily basis. To share feedback directly with the state of Colorado, use this link:

April 27: Governor Polis is expected to officially announce in the coming days the parameters for personal services businesses to reopen with strict precautions beginning Friday, May 1, 2020. The Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA) stresses that if you are not currently operating as a critical service business, you should not open your doors on April 27, 2020. Please note that lifting statewide restrictions does not relieve you of continuing to comply with local public health orders. DORA will communicate via email a comprehensive summary of state-level information and guidance specific to your industry. Personal services should not take place until these directives are conveyed, can be fully implemented, and you can safely reopen, should you choose to do so.April 23. The current Executive Order expires on April 26, 2020. A new Executive Order outlining a tiered reopening of Colorado, with guidance, will be issued on April 27, 2020. No massage therapists, estheticians, or cosmetologists should reopen their businesses on April 27. DORA will be sending a message to licensees by April 27.

April 23: The current Executive Order expires on April 26, 2020. A new Executive Order outlining a tiered reopening of Colorado, with guidance, will be issued on April 27, 2020. No massage therapists, estheticians, or cosmetologists should reopen their businesses on April 27. DORA will be sending a message to licensees by April 27.

April 21: Legislative update from ASCP: Colorado COVID-19 State Update. On April 20, 2020, Colorado Governor Jared Polis announces guidelines for a gradual reopening of the state. The Governor explained this will include strong recommendations and restrictions for businesses that are allowed to slowly reopen in the coming weeks. Personal service providers and elective medical providers, including hair salons, dental offices and tattoo shops, will be able to reopen with some precautions on April 27, 2020. Massage therapy was not exclusively mentioned, however, it is our assumption they too will be allowed to reopen. We are working with DORA and other state officials for clarification.

April 2: Regarding Governor Polis’s March 19, 2020, Executive Order 2020 009 banning elective and non-emergency procedures: DORA-licensed massage therapists need to be diligent about compliance with the order. The state strongly recommends all licensed professionals adhere to CDPHE’s guidance regarding social distancing. Under this guidance, individuals are advised not to interact unless they can maintain a six-foot distance to prevent the spread of the virus. Contact between practitioners and clients should be limited to essential services only. Download PDF

March 26: Gov. Jared Polis said he is issuing a statewide stay-at-home order effective Thursday morning in his latest attempt to try to slow the spread of the new coronavirus. The order, unveiled Wednesday afternoon at a news conference, goes into effect Thursday at 6:00 a.m. and continues until at least April 11. The order generally requires Coloradans to stay home unless they need to leave for necessary business reasons or to get food, exercise, or seek medical care. Businesses deemed “critical” are exempt.

March 19: Colorado Department of Public Health Order. “This order, effective immediately, impacts DORA licensees in the Barber/Cosmetology and Massage Therapy fields. Hair stylists, nail technicians, barbers, estheticians, cosmetologists, massage therapists, and shop owners in the barber/cosmetology industry licensed by the Division of Professions and Occupations are impacted.” Order in place through April 30, 2020.

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May 15: Phase 1 of Reopen Connecticut allows hair salons and barbershops to reopen May 20, 2020, at 50% capacity and by appointment only with waiting rooms closed. Services will be restricted; those that require removal of a facemask (beard trimming, lip waxing, etc) are prohibited at this time. Review the state guidelines for barbers and hairdressers here:

April 10: Schools will remain closed and restrictions on businesses will continue until at least May 20, 2020, and potentially longer unless widespread testing for the coronavirus becomes available to determine whether people remain at risk of contracting or spreading the disease, Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont said April 10, 2020.

March 26: Governor Ned Lamont ordered and directed restrictions on workplaces for non-essential businesses effective March 23, 2020, at 8:00 p.m. through April 22, 2020, unless earlier modified, extended, or terminated. All businesses and not-for-profit entities in the state shall employ telecommuting or work from home procedures and reduce their in-person workforces by 100% not later than March 23, 2020, at 8:00 p.m.

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May 21: Governor Carney announced Phase 1 of Delaware Reopens, allowing barbershops and hair salons to reopen as of June 1. Guidelines and mandates can be found on page 18 of the linked document. In addition, general guidances and mandates for individuals and businesses can be found on pages 12–13. Massage therapy services, esthetics/skin care, nail salons, waxing services, and spas are not included in Phase 1 openings "unless the health of the client would be jeopardized without access to the service." If you perform a service that falls under this restriction, use the guidances for barbershops and hair salons.

Governor Carney extended the stay-at-home order through May 31, 2020.

March 26: Governor John C. Carney issued a stay at home order and defined essential businesses. Click here for its definition:

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District of Columbia

May 18: Mayor Muriel Bowser issued Mayor’s Order 2020-066 to extend Washington, DC’s public health emergency, requiring businesses to remain closed and individuals to remain at home. The order is effective May 16, 2020, through June 8, 2020.

March 31: D.C. issued a stay-at-home order Monday, March 30, for its residents to help contain the coronavirus outbreak, which goes into effect Wednesday, April 1, 2020, at 12:01 a.m. Everyone in D.C. must stay at their residence, with certain exceptions, such as: getting medical care that cannot be provided through telehealth, getting food and essential household goods, performing or accessing essential governmental functions, working at essential businesses, engaging in essential travel, or engaging in allowable recreational activities. A person who does not follow the order could be guilty of a misdemeanor and subject to a fine of up to $5,000, imprisonment for up to 90 days, or both. View the mayor's orders here:

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April 3: Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis issued a stay-at-home executive order requiring all persons in Florida to limit their movements and personal interactions outside of their home beginning 12:01 a.m. Friday, April 3, 2020 through April 30, 2020.

March 23: Governor Ron DeSantis issued Executive Order 20-72, regarding non-essential elective medical procedures. "All hospitals, ambulatory surgical centers, office surgery centers, dental, orthodontic and endodontic offices, and other health care practitioners’ offices in the state of Florida are prohibited from providing any medically unnecessary, non-urgent or non-emergency procedure or surgery which, if delayed, does not place a patient's immediate health, safety or wellbeing at risk, or will, if delayed, not contribute to the worsening of a serious or life-threatening medical condition".

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April 27: On April 23, 2020, Georgia Governor Brian Kemp issued Executive Order, which outlines the additional measures that esthetics, hair, and massage therapy businesses must take upon reopening this Friday, April 24, 2020. The protocols are listed on page 15 of the document. NOTE: The order does not require that you open your businesses, but provides regulation in the event that you do. Read the PDF here

April 21: Georgia Governor Brian P. Kemp announced on April 20, 2020, that gyms, fitness centers, barbers, cosmetologists, hair designers, nail care artists, estheticians, and massage therapists will be allowed to reopen their doors this Friday, April 24, 2020. The entities reopening are required to follow Minimum Basic Operation, which include among other things: Personal Protective Equipment available to all workers, increasing physical space between worksites “to at least six (6) feet, suspending the use of pin pads or electronic signature capture, requiring and screening for sick workers, and providing for hand-sanitizing or washing stations at appropriate places, among other things. In addition, not more than 10 people shall be allowed to gather at a location if there is not six(6) feet between them. Staggering shifts is also required. "Minimum Basic Operations are limited to “The minimum necessary activities to maintain the value of a business. . . to provide services, manage inventory, ensure security, process payroll and employee benefits. Schools are allowed to use distance learning through the end of the emergency, which may be as soon as May 14, 2020.

April 1: Georgia Governor Brian Kemp said April 1, 2020, that he is issuing a statewide shelter-in-place order as the state continues to battle the coronavirus. During a news conference Wednesday afternoon, the governor said he would sign the order on Thursday and it would go into effect on Friday, April 3, 2020.

March 27: The Georgia State Board of Cosmetology and Barbers acknowledges the concerns of all involved parties about the spread of COVID-19. Under careful consideration, the Board voted to allow all Board licensed and approved schools to teach the theory portion of the curriculum through online education. Schools may utilize electronic education through current national programs such as Milady or Pivot Point, or classes taught through webinars like Go To Meeting, Citrix, and others. The practical part of the curriculum must still be taught inside the school.

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May 18: Governor David Ige issued a reinstatement of Executive Order No. 20-05 on May 5, 2020, allowing "health care professionals," to return to work. See Exhibit A 1(b) in the linked document.

April 9: Hawaii Governor David Y. Ige extended the disaster emergency relief period through April 30, 2020, unless terminated or extended by a separate proclamation. Clarification received from the Hawaii government: Health-care services and facilities are exempt from the Governor’s March 23, 2020, Third Supplemental Proclamation as long as proper social distancing measures are followed to the fullest extent possible. DCCA-licensed massage therapists would be within that exemption.

March 25: Governor David Ige signed a third supplementary proclamation Monday, ordering the entire state to stay at home and work from home starting at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, March 25 through April 30. Essential workers are exempt. To ensure that the state continues to provide essential, core services, there are exemptions in the following categories: Healthcare services, grocery stores and pharmacies, food production and farming, public and private schools, restaurants offering take-out services, hotels and motels, construction, and essential government functions. Non-compliance would be a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to $5,000, or up to one year in jail, or both. For questions about exemptions, email CovidExemption@hawaii.gov

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May 18: Close contact services are permitted to reopen May 16, 2020, during Stage 2 of Idaho Rebounds. This includes waxing salons, massage therapy establishments, barbershops, hair salons, nail salons, and cosmetic services. The state of Idaho recommends businesses use the following protocols as guidance for their plans to reopen in Stage 2 in the linked document.

April 27: Any facility or service (including formerly "nonessential" businesses) can begin to operate via curbside services, drive-in, drive-through pickup, mailed services, or delivery services through to April 30, 2020.

March 27: Idaho Governor Brad Little has issued a statewide 21-day stay at home order. All restaurants must immediately stop having dining in services and can only have drive-through, curbside, delivery, and to-go orders. Non-essential businesses, such as bars, nightclubs, gyms, recreational facilities, entertainment venues, convention centers, and hair and nail salons, will need to close.

March 16: At its regularly scheduled and noticed meeting, the Board voted to allow barber and cosmetology schools to use distance learning for Theory courses, including the use of mannequin heads if necessary, from now until April 6, 2020. At its April 2, 2020, meeting, the Board will revisit this decision and provide further guidance to schools at that time.

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June 1: Phase III will be later in Chicago than the rest of Illinois—mayor Lori Lightfoot is expected to make an announcement later this week regarding a Phase III date for Chicago.

May 27: Hair salons, hair braiders, barbershops, nail salons, spas, massage establishments, waxing centers, cosmetology schools, and other providers of personal care services may resume business operations during the Phase III: Recovery stage of Restore Illinois with guidelines that services should be limited to those that can be performed while both the practitioner and client are wearing masks and that massage therapy and body treatment sessions be 30 minutes or less ( We are working to clarify when Phase III begins and when professionals may reopen.

May 21: A Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity FAQ issued in April, 2020, and updated as of May 20, 2020, confirmed that massage therapy is not considered an essential business unless the treatment is being performed due to a physician's order. Barbershops and hair salons are also considered nonessential, but can be open for retail sales only at this time.

The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) issued a variance permitting licensed barbering, cosmetology, esthetics, hair braiding, and nail technology schools to teach online theory courses and theory portions of practicum courses up to a maximum of 50 percent via distance learning. This variance only applies to students who were current students prior to March 20, 2020, the date the Governor issued Executive Order 2020-10.

May 8: Governor Pritzker extended the stay at home order through May 29, 2020.

March 20: Shelter in Place order issued for all people except for essential services through 4/7/2020. Any professional licenses issued by the department with renewal dates between March 1, 2020, through and including July 31, 2020, are granted an automatic extension to renew to September 30, 2020.

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May 18: On May 1, 2020, Governor Eric J. Holcomb issued Executive Order 20-26, introducing five stages that will be used to reopen the state of Indiana, with each additional stage being subject to fewer restrictions and limitations than the previous stage. Per the order, personal service businesses, including spas, salons, barbershops, and massage therapy establishments, are to remain closed in Stage 1. However, these businesses may reopen and begin operation one week following Stage 2. The date depends on the county you live in. Refer to the linked document on page 8 for the safefy protocols you must follow to reopen. For counties advancing to Stage 2 on May 4, 2020, personal service businesses may open May 11, 2020. For counties advancing to Stage 2 on May 11, 2020, personal service businesses may open May 18, 2020. For counties advancing to Stage 2 on May 18, 2020, personal service businesses may open May 23, 2020.

May 14: Hair salons, barbershops, nail salons, spas, and massage therapy establishments may reopen in Stage 2 of Back on Track Indiana. Personal service professions open a week after the county opens. As such, Professional Service Businesses may reopen in all counties except Lake, Marion, and Cass counties on May 11, 2020; in Lake and Marion counties on May 18, 2020; and Cass county on May 25, 2020. All businesses must operate by appointment only. Employees and clients must wear face coverings to the extent practicable, and work stations must be spaced to meet social distancing guidelines and must be cleaned after each customer.

April 13: Indiana Governor Eric J. Holcomb issued Executive Order 20-18 on April 6, 2020, replacing Executive Order 20-08, which extends Indiana's Stay-at-Home order through April 20, 2020. The Governor detailed which businesses are deemed essential during the pandemic, which you can find at the following link: Any health-care service must comply with social distancing requirements established by the CDC, including maintaining six-foot social distancing for both employees and members of the general public at all times.

March 27: From the Indiana Professional Licensing Agency (PLA): licenses issued by the State that are set to expire in the next 60 days will instead expire on May 22, 2020. This means that any license that is currently active will remain active until at least May 22. This will affect the following professions licensed under PLA: cosmetology, barbering, and massage therapy. For the duration of the public health crisis, the Indiana State Board of Cosmetology and Barber Examiners has temporarily suspended 820 IAC 4-1-5(b). This suspension means that cosmetology students are no longer required to attain their cosmetology school hours in person at the school and may take remote programming provided by the cosmetology school.

March 19: The Madison County Health Department has ordered the closure of all non-essential businesses beginning Friday in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The new restrictions will be in effect from 8:00 a.m. March 20, 2020, through April 6, 2020. As a result, Madison County needs to take necessary steps to ensure the safety of each citizen in the community. The Madison County Health Department has directed the following actions: The closure of: hair salons, nail salons, spas, barber shops, tattoo parlors, liquor stores, electronic stores, department stores, hobby and craft stores, automotive dealerships, furniture stores, clothing stores, resale stores, and any other retail stores that do not sell food or home supplies.

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May 15: Governor Reynolds signed a new proclamation, allowing salons, barbershops, and massage therapy establishments to reopen throughout Iowa May 15, 2020, with public health measures in place. View link for full list of state safety protocols.

May 7: Salons (cosmetology, esthetics, nail technology, manicuring, and pedicuring), barbershops, medical spas, and massage therapy establishments may reopen on May 15, 2020, except in the following counties: Allamakee, Benton, Black Hawk, Bremer, Dallas, Des Moines, Dubuqe, Fayette, Henry Iowa, Jasper, Johnson, Linn, Louisa, Marshall, Muscatine, Polk, Poweshiek, Scott, Tama, Washington, and Woodbury. However, salons and barbershops may open on May 15, 2020, in the above counties. Massage therapy businesses cannot.

May 4: Governor Reynolds ordered in a Proclamation of Disaster Emergency that all salons, (including establishments providing cosmetology, esthetics, nail technology, manicuring, and pedicuring) barbershops, and massage therapy establishments must close. This proclamation is in effect through May 27, 2020, unless terminated earlier or extended.

March 25: Effective 10:00 p.m., March 22, 2020, and continuing until 11:59 p.m. on March 31, 2020, the following establishments licensed by the Bureau of Professional Licensure shall be closed (

  • Salons, including all establishments providing the services of cosmetology, electrology, esthetics, nail technology, manicuring, and pedicuring, all as defined in Iowa Code § 157.1
  • Barbershops, as defined in Iowa Code § 158.1
  • Massage therapy establishments, where an individual is practicing massage therapy as defined by Iowa Code § 152C.1(3).
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May 15: Although many businesses were permitted to reopen under "Ad Astra: A Plan to Reopen Kansas," nail salons, barber shops, and hair salons may reopen May 18, 2020, but only for pre-scheduled appointments or by online check-in. Businesses must meet the requirements found on page 15 of this document:

April 14: Kansas Governor Laura Kelly issued Executive Order No. 20-24 on April 14, 2020, extending the statewide stay at home order through May 3, 2020. The Kansas Board of Cosmetology Licensed Schools authorized the Executive Director to temporarily approve school requests for distance learning for students currently enrolled where the distance learning venue meets the statutory 1:25 student-instructor ratio and a method of tracking attendance is in place. Schools requesting approval should email KBOC@ks.gov

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May 8: Governor Beshear's Healthy at Work plan announced massage therapy, hair salons, barbershops, cosmetology businesses, and nail salons can open May 25. Keep checking the Healthy at Work website for guidelines for each of the professions that you will need to have in place before you can reopen.

March 25: All "non-life-sustaining" businesses in Kentucky will be closed to in-person traffic by 8:00 p.m. Thursday, March 26, as Kentucky officials try to limit the spread of the novel coronavirus known as COVID-19, Governor Andy Beshear said Tuesday. Beshear said the businesses impacted by the latest order will be spelled out in an executive order Wednesday. Many businesses and retailers have already closed to in-person traffic, and Beshear said staples like groceries, pharmacies, and gas stations will continue to operate throughout the state's response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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March 25: Governor John Bel Edwards issued a statewide Stay at Home order that goes into effect at 5:00 p.m. Monday, March 23, to further fight the spread of COVID-19 in Louisiana. People can leave their homes to do essential things like buying groceries or food, pick up medicine, or go to work only if their job is essential. If you have to go out, make sure you practice social distancing measures and keep 6 feet between you and the people around you. The order is set to expire at the end of the night on Sunday, April 12. The new Stay at Home order has limits on the following: All personal care and grooming businesses, including but not limited to barber shops, beauty salons, nail salons, spas, massage parlors, tattoo parlors, and other similar businesses. The Board of Cosmetology will suspend testing. Testing closures due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) will begin March 23, 2020, and remain closed for a month.

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May 7: Governor Mills updated Restarting Maine's Economy, a staged approach to the reopening of Maine's businesses. Barbershops and hair salons may open for hair services only, and there are protocols that must be followed. It appears nail technicians and manicurists may open in June in Stage 2., and massage therapists and estheticians in Stage 3 in July or August.

March 25: The Governor issued an order Tuesday afternoon that includes heavier restrictions on Maine businesses and groups as a means to further urge social distancing to prevent the spread of the pandemic illness. Effective March 25 at 12:01 a.m., the Governor has mandated that "all non-essential businesses close their physical locations that are public facing, meaning those that allow customer, vendor, or other in-person contact." Additionally, Governor Mills has ordered the closure of non-essential businesses that require more than 10 people to be in a space where physical distancing is not practical. This mandated closure of businesses will remain in place for a period of fourteen days, until April 8.

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May 22: On May 13, 2020, Governor Hogan amended and reinstated Order 20-05-13, allowing businesses that provide certain personal services to reopen May 15, 2020. Beauty salons and barbershops may open, but only to provide hair services. Services are to be by appointment only, and all staff and customers are required to wear face coverings. The number of persons allowed in a personal service business is not to exceed 50 percent of the establishment's maximum capacity. After providing services, employees must clean and disinfect the area in which services were provided in accordance with guidance from the CDC and MDH.

May 19: Maryland Governor Larry Hogan amended the order of March 30, 2020, extending the closure of nonessential businesses, including barbershops, beauty salons, and other establishments that provide esthetic services such as hair or nail services. The order is in effect through May 30, 2020.

March 31: Maryland will be under a "stay-at-home" order beginning at 8:00 p.m. March 30. Gov. Larry Hogan made the announcement the same morning in an effort to limit the spread of the coronavirus. The executive order instructs residents to stay at home and only travel outside their residence for a handful of reasons. They include going out to obtain medical supplies or services, picking up groceries or other necessary products, and going out to public spaces to engage in activities. Hogan said any Maryland resident who violates the order will be convicted of a misdemeanor and subject to up to a year in prison, a $5,000 fine, or both.

March 27: Regarding programs that lead to licensure, the US Department of Education has left the decision to accept clock-hours in a distance education format up to the applicable licensure body.

March 25: Maryland Governor Larry Hogan issued an order Monday for nonessential businesses to close Monday evening in a more aggressive attempt to quash the coronavirus pandemic.

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May 20: Reopening Massachusetts, the Baker-Polito Administration’s plan to safely reopen the state’s economy and ease social restrictions, allows hair salons and barbershops to reopen in Phase 1 on May 25, 2020. Businesses must follow the safety standards developed by the state at the following link: Other personal services, including nail salons, day spas and massage therapy establishments, may reopen in Phase 2. A date and safety standards have yet to be determined.

March 23: Governor Charlie Baker on Monday, March 23, ordered all non-essential businesses and organizations to close for at least two weeks, but said he would not issue a stay-at-home order.

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May 26: Governor Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-69, closing businesses offering non-essential personal care services including hair, nail, massage, and traditional spa services through May 28, 2020. This does not include services necessary for medical treatment as determined by a licensed medical provider.,9309,7-387-90499_90705-527830--,00.html

Governor Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-99, extending the state of emergency through June 19, 2020.,9309,7-387-90499_90705-530039--,00.html

May 8: Governor Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-77, extending the stay at home order through May 28, 2020.,9309,7-387-90499_90705-528460--,00.html

May 4: Governor Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-67 and Executive Order 2020-68, clarifying that a state of emergency and disaster remain in effect across the state of Michigan through May 28, 2020. The governor will evaluate the continuing need for the orders prior to expiration, and terminate the states of emergency and disaster if the threat and danger has passed.,9309,7-387-90499_90640-527721--,00.html

April 29: Executive Order 2020-59 extended Governor Whitmer's stay at home order through May 15, 2020.,9309,7-387-90499_90705-526894--,00.html

April 10: Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-42 on April 9, 2020, announcing the extension of Michigan's “Stay Home, Stay Safe” order through April 30, 2020. The order requires all workers who are not necessary to sustain or protect life to stay home.

March 26: Executive Order 2020-20 was issued, which states: "To mitigate the spread of COVID-19, protect the public health, and provide essential protections to vulnerable Michiganders, it is reasonable and necessary to impose limited and temporary restrictions on the use of places of public accommodation." The Executive Order clarified an earlier order that imposed such restrictions by clarifying which facilities are deemed "non-essential." The order continues: "Beginning as soon as possible but no later than March 22, 2020, at 9:00 a.m., and continuing until April 13, 2020, at 11:59 p.m., the following places of public accommodation are closed to ingress, egress, use, and occupancy by members of the public ... Non-essential personal care services, [including] hair, nail, tanning, massage, traditional spa, tattoo, body art, and piercing services, and similar personal care services that require individuals to be within six feet of each other. This does not include services necessary for medical treatment as determined by a licensed medical provider.",9309,7-387-90499_90705-522576--,00.html?fbclid=IwAR1cziSB8ViFeOyBfWyRlrMRSMoB91axCqk0iSij99hYvHbUOFWoE29sBJs

March 20: Gymnasiums, fitness centers, recreation centers, indoor sports facilities, indoor exercise facilities, exercise studios and spas all need to be shut down between March 16 and March 30.,9309,7-387-90499_90705-521789--,00.html

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May 22: Stay Safe Minnesota is entering Phase 2. Businesses offering personal care services as defined in Executive Order 20-08 ( may resume operations June 1, 2020 according to the plan available at These businesses include massage therapy establishments, spas, salons, nail salons, cosmetology salons, esthetics salons, advanced practice esthetics salons, eyelash salons, and barbershops. Guidelines are available at

May 14: Governor Tim Walz signed Executive Order 20-56, which provides guidance on when massage therapists, estheticians, and cosmetologists might be able to return to work. Sections 7(a) and (b) on page 5 extend the stay-at-home order through May 31, 2020, and specific profession guidance will be revealed to the public by May 20, 2020, with the intention to open these businesses on June 1, 2020.

May 7: Governor Tim Walz signed Executive Order 20-48, which extends the stay at home order through May 17, 2020. Barbershops and salons may open to sell retail products, not services, provided they have protocols in place that can be found on page 20 at Section 8(b).

March 27: Tim Walz, Governor of the State of Minnesota, issued an Executive Order closing the following business: tanning and body art establishments, tattoo and piercing parlors, businesses offering massage therapy or similar bodywork, spas, salons, nail salons, cosmetology salons, esthetician salons, advanced practice esthetician salons, eyelash salons, and barber shops. This includes, but is not limited to, all salons and shops licensed by the Minnesota Board of Cosmetologist Examiners and the Minnesota Board of Barber Examiners.

March 23: Governor Tim Walz today signed Executive Order 20-08, clarifying the types of businesses and places of public accommodation subject to closure per Executive Order 20-04. The executive order clarifies that the closure order applies to salons, barbershops, and other similar establishments. The governor modified Executive Order 20-04 to close "businesses offering massage therapy" through March 27 at 5:00 pm.

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May 18: Governor Tate Reeves signed Executive Order 1480 (EO 1480) on May 8, 2020, which allows "salons, barbershops, and other personal care and personal grooming facilities" to reopen subject to limitations outlined in EO 1480.

May 14: Governor Tate Reeves announced that salons and barbershops will be allowed to resume operations on May 11, 2020, in the latest step in reopening Mississippi's economy amid the coronavirus pandemic. Businesses must meet cleaning and social distancing guidelines to operate. View the complete list of safety protocols here:

April 29: Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves issued Executive Order No. 1477 on April 24, 2020, which ordered spas, salons, barbershops, and all other personal care and personal grooming facilities to remain closed to the public. However, these businesses may continue minimum operations limited to retail sales by drive-through, curbside, and/or delivery services.

March 20: The Mississippi State Department of Health (MSDH) advises that given the ongoing spread of COVID-19 in Mississippi and the shortage of protective medical equipment, elective medical procedures and non-essential medical visits must be postponed at this time. The following measures should be taken:

  • Physicians, hospitals, and medical centers must defer elective surgical and diagnostic procedures until COVID-19 spread has been diminished and the supply of protective medical equipment is restored.
  • Physicians and providers should reschedule non-urgent medical appointments for a later date.
  • Dentists must delay non-emergency or routine dental procedures.
  • Patients should reschedule any non-essential procedures, surgeries, or medical visits until the threat of COVID-19 is diminished.
  • These measures will protect patients and health-care professionals by minimizing potential exposure to COVID-19 and preserving valuable protective equipment.

Follow MSDH by email and social media at

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May 26: Governor Parson extended the state of emergency through June 15, 2020.

March 31: Governor Michael L. Parson declared a state of emergency in Missouri due to COVID-19.

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May 1: On April 22, 2020, Governor Bullock announced an Executive Order providing guidance for the phased reopening of the state of Montana and establishing conditions for Phase One. Per the order, salons and massage fall under “personal care services.” Phase One offers strict reopening guidelines for personal care service providers on page 18 of the linked document.

March 25: Governor Steve Bullock on Tuesday extended his executive order regarding the coronavirus by two weeks, setting a new deadline of April 10 for closures of schools, restaurants, bars, gyms, and other entities. He also placed mandates on "social distancing," prohibiting nonessential social and recreational gatherings outside of homes of more than 10 people.

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March 31: Governor Pete Ricketts signed an emergency declaration: "I am declaring a State of Emergency in Nebraska as we continue to work to be the best prepared state in the nation for COVID-19,” said Governor Ricketts. “All across the state, individuals, businesses, employers, and churches are stepping up to make plans to mitigate the impact of the virus. There is a role for each one of us in this as we work together to keep people healthy.”

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May 29: Nevada has issued industry specific guidance. Guidelines for massage therapists and massage establishments can be found starting at page 41 of the following document, and for esthesticians and skin care establishments starting at page 46. Read the guidelines here.

May 27: Governor Steve Sisolak announced in a press release that massage therapy establishments, salons, and other businesses that provide esthetics or other skincare services such as facials, hair removal, eyelash extensions, and eyebrow threading may reopen May 29, 2020, under strict protocols and social distancing guidelines as recommended by LEAP ( and the Nevada Board of Cosmetology ( Read the press release here.

May 8: Governor Steve Sisolak issued Phase 1 reopening guidelines that stated barbershops, hair and nail salons, and medically prescribed massage therapy are allowed to open Saturday, May 9, 2020. Spas and massage establishments remain closed. Those opening MUST wear face coverings, and partitions or walls between workstations are "strongly encouraged." If no partitions are between the workstations, the business MUST only use every other workstation so that there is 6 feet between occupied workstations. Customers may be accepted by appointment only, and customers waiting for an appointment must wait outside and practice social distancing. Stylists must wear face coverings, and customers should wear face coverings "to the extent practicable."

May 4: Governor Sisolak issued Directive 016, extending the Stay at Home measures until May 15, 2020, and relaxing certain restrictions on retail, faith activities, and leisure activities.

April 2: Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak issued a stay-at-home order April 1, 2020, which will remain in effect until April 30, 2020, and extended the nonessential business closures. Nonessential businesses include those that promote recreational social gathering activities, or promote extended periods of public interaction where the risk of transmission of COVID-19 is high. This includes spas, hairdressers, barbers, nail salons, massage not provided by a physical therapist, waxing, and other cosmetic services. Download PDF

March 27: At the March 19, 2020, emergency board meeting, the board members of the Nevada State Board of Cosmetology voted to temporarily approve distance-learning education for currently registered beauty school students and licensed beauty schools during the COVID-19 pandemic. The temporary distance-learning approval is only active during Governor Sisolak's directive that all non-essential businesses close for 30 days. Please follow this link to review the detailed guidelines:

March 23: The Nevada governor's office released a list Wednesday, March 18, of "essential" businesses in the state that are to remain open and the "non-essential" sectors that the governor recommended close in support of COVID-19 social distancing. Beauty and personal care services and facilities, including but not limited to barber shops, beauty, tanning, waxing hair salons, and nail salons and spas, are considered non-essential. "Health care services" are considered essential, although massage is not specifically mentioned.

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New Hampshire

May 15: Governor Sununu issued Emergency Order 40 on May 1, 2020. Massage therapists are still closed, but the order allows "Cosmetology - Barbershops and Salons" to reopen on May 11, 2020. Mandatory protocols can be found on page 41 of the Emergency Order. The order also extends the stay at home order through May 31, 2020.

May 1: Under New Hampshire’s Stay at Home 2.0 Plan, the following professions have been permitted to reopen. Effective May 11, 2020, barbers, hair salons, and other cosmetology businesses may open their doors to employees and clients to resume in-person services, so long as they comply with the following guidelines

March 31: On Thursday, March 26, 2020, Governor Christopher T. Sununu issued Emergency Order #17, requiring non-essential businesses to close and Granite State citizens to stay at home. The order takes effect at 11:59 p.m. on March 27, 2020, and lasts until May 4, 2020. View the full list of essential businesses here:

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New Jersey

April 20: New Jersey is now online for self-employed unemployment with Pandemic Unemployment benefits. If you are self-employed and are applying for unemployment benefits, please let us know how the process is going and what kind of questions they were asking regarding self-employment and income.

March 31: Due to the ongoing concerns regarding the COVID-19 virus and in the interest of protecting the safety and health of New Jersey residents, the Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy is allowing licensees to complete all the required 20 hours of continuing education (CE) online for the 2020 renewal cycle.

March 21: All barbershops, hair salons, tattoo or piercing parlors, nail salons, hair removal services, and related personal care services will be closed to members of the public effective Saturday, March 21, 2020, at 8:00 p.m., as these services cannot be provided while maintaining social distance. 

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New Mexico

May 29: Department of Health Secretary Kunkel issued a new Public Health Emergency Order on May 27, 2020. Close contact businesses are closed through May 31, 2020. Guidances for "Salons, Spas, Tattoo Parlors, and Related Services" can be found here. No specific guidances for massage therapists have been issued, so please follow the guidances in the link:

May 13: On May 5, 2020, New Mexico Department of Health Secretary Kathyleen M. Kunkel extended the Public Health Emergency Order through May 15, 2020. All current documents issued by the Department of Health remain in effect. Nonessential businesses remain closed at this time.

March 27: The New Mexico Board of Barbers and Cosmetologists issued an emergency waiver that grants immediate approval for distance education within New Mexico through April 30, 2020. However, practitioner programs are limited to no more than 25% of the program content online. There are several provisions and parameters regarding this waiver, so please follow the link to learn more.

March 25: New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham announced during a press conference Monday that she has ordered New Mexico Secretary of Health Kathy Kunkel to issue a new public health order suspending operations at non-essential businesses and non-profits in an effort to prevent further spread of COVID-19. The order is effective beginning at 8:00 a.m. Tuesday and will remain in place through April 10.

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New York

June 1: Much of New York is in Phase 2, which allows the opening of hair salons and barbershops (for hair cutting and coloring only). Extensive guidelines for reopening have been issued. The key directive requires masks on at all times for clients and practitioners. The guidelines state: “This guidance applies only to hair service businesses, including hair salons, barbershops, and other similar hair service businesses. This guidance does not apply to nail salons, tattoo parlors, or any other non-haircutting-related personal care services or activities, including but not limited to: beard trimming, nose hair trimming, facials, manicures/pedicures, makeup application, threading, tweezing, or waxing.” Regions open in Phase 2 as of June 1 include Central New York, Finger Lakes, North Country, Mohawk Valley and Southern Tier. New York City enters Phase 1 around June 8. Please check the Forward NY link to stay up to date on what is opening when in New York.

May 7: New York remains closed through May 15. The state is working on Phase 2 openings, and it appears that Professional Services, but not Personal Services are part of Phase 2 reopenings. We are looking for further guidance over the next few weeks that specifically pertains to massage therapy, esthetics, and cosmetology.

April 27: Nonessential businesses are to remain closed through April 15. The New York Health Insurance Exchange is open through May 15 for those in need of health insurance.

April 13: Some regulations restrict licensees to a certain percentage of self-study for continuing education requirements. In response to the evolving situation with COVID-19, and for those licensees whose registrations are due to renew March 1–September 1, 2020, the department will grant an adjustment to all licensees to complete up to 100% of the continuing education as self-study, so long as it is taken from a department-approved provider and is in an acceptable subject area for the specific profession.

April 9: Self-employed individuals in New York should file for unemployment online. Last names starting with A–F file on Mondays, G–N on Tuesdays, O–Z on Wednesdays. If you miss your date, you can apply Thursday–Sunday. New York has a maximum payout of up to $504 per week (payout amounts will differ for each individual; not everyone will receive $504 per week). The federal government is adding $600 per week and has extended the unemployment period out an additional 13 weeks.

March 21: All barbershops, hair salons, tattoo or piercing salons, nail salons, hair removal services, and related personal care services will be closed to the public effective Saturday, March 21, 2020, at 8:00 p.m. New York will implement a 90-day moratorium on evictions for residential and commercial tenants. Casinos, gyms, theaters, retail shopping malls, amusement parks, and bowling alleys are closed until further notice. Bars and restaurants are closed, but takeout can be ordered during the period of closure. Testing is free for all eligible New Yorkers as ordered by a health-care provider. 

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North Carolina

May 21: On May 20, 2020, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper issued Executive Order No. 141, moving North Carolina into Phase 2 of reopening the state and some businesses. Businesses offering personal care services, including barbershops, beauty salons, waxing and hair removal centers, hair salons, nail salons, manicure or pedicure studios, and massage therapy establishments, may reopen May 22, 2020. Businesses reopening should follow the state's safety guidance found here:

May 13: On May 5, 2020, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper issued Executive Order 138, easing restrictions on some businesses within the state in Phase 1 of reopening North Carolina. Personal care and grooming businesses are to remain closed through May 22, 2020, including barbershops, beauty salons (waxing and hair removal centers included), hair salons, nail salons and manicure/pedicure providers, and massage therapists. Exempt from this order are massage therapists who may provide medical massage therapy services upon specific referral from a medical or naturopathic health-care provider. Refer to page 10 of the provided link.

March 24: On Monday, March 23, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper ordered all K-12 public schools to be closed through May 15. Businesses such as gyms, movie theaters, sweepstakes parlors, and health clubs were asked to close as soon as possible and must close by Wednesday afternoon. Hair and nail salons, barbershops, and massage businesses were also advised to close.

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North Dakota

May 6: On April 29, 2020, Governor Burgum announced in Executive Order 2020-6.4 that personal care services provided by cosmetologists, estheticians, manicurists, barbers, and massage therapists may return to practice on May 1, 2020. However, they adopt and rigorously follow the personal services guidelines found here:

March 23: Health clubs are specifically shut down as of March 20. The Board does not have the authority to mandate closure of a licensee's business or establishments. Instead, the Board is asking that licensees carefully consider recommendations made by the US Center for Disease Control (CDC), the North Dakota Department of Health, and the Governor's Office.    

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May 13: In a press release on May 7, 2020, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine announced the next phase of the Responsible RestartOhio plan as it relates to restaurants, bars, and personal care services. Massage therapy is included in the next phase of the Responsible RestartOhio plan, and massage therapy establishments may reopen May 15, 2020. Practitioners must follow the sector-specific operating requirements developed by the state found here:

May 7: In a press release, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine announced the next phase of the Responsible RestartOhio plan as it relates to restaurants, bars, and personal care services. Personal care services, such as hair salons, barbershops, day spas, nail salons, and tanning facilities, may reopen on May 15, 2020. Businesses that reopen must follow Governor DeWine's detailed list of guidelines.

April 29: Massage therapy locations, hair salons, day spas, and barbershops are not included in the Responsible RestartOhio plan list of businesses that can open on May 1. Only massages offered as part of a patient's plan of care, in a setting such as a doctor's office, hospital, or chiropractor's office, may continue.

March 19: Effective immediately March 19, all "Massage Therapy Locations" must be shut down.

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April 24: Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt announced the Open Up & Recover Safely (OURS) Plan, a three-phased approach to reopen the state. In Phase One-Part One, hair salons, barbershops, spas, and nail salons may reopen business Friday, April 24, 2020, by appointment only and must follow strict sanitation protocols. View the guidelines here: Hair and Nails Guideline PDF. Spa Guideline PDF

March 27: Oklahoma’s State Board of Cosmetology and Barbering voted on Thursday, March 26, 2020, to adopt an emergency rule increasing the distance education allowance from 10% up to 30% per course (theory training only). Once the Governor signs the rule to make it official, letters to those that have already requested them will be sent out. Schools can request an approval letter from the board by emailing the Director of the Agency, Sherry Lewelling, at

March 23: The recommendations include temporarily postponing elective surgeries, implementing best practices for medical providers, helping grocery stores innovate their operations by providing drive-thru pick up or delivery for all customers and encouraging the use of technology, and temporarily closing some high-touch businesses like spas, nail salons, and massage locations.

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May 15: Non-medical massage therapy services, barbershops, hair salons, esthetician practices, medical spas, facial spas and day spas, and nail salons may reopen in Phase 1 on May 15, 2020, except in the following counties: Washington, Clackamas, Polk, Multnomah, and Marion. Businesses reopening must following the state's specific guidance for personal services providers found at

April 29: The Oregon Board of Massage Therapists (OBMT) issued a statement that massage therapy is not included in the non-urgent procedures that are allowed to open on May 1. Read the statement here.

March 24: Governor Kate Brown issued Executive Order EO 20-12, which prohibits shopping at specific categories of retail businesses for which close personal contact is difficult to avoid, such as arcades, barber shops, hair salons, gyms, and fitness studios, skating rinks, theaters, and yoga studios.

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May 29: Many counties are moving into the "green" phase, which allows hair salons and barbershops to open at 50 percent occupancy with services by appointment only, and massage therapy to open at 50 percent occupancy with appointments strongly encouraged. 

May 13: As Pennsylvania regions and counties move into the yellow phase, restrictions on personal care services remain in place. Spas, hair salons, nail salons, and massage therapy establishments must remain closed.

May 4: Personal care services such as gyms, spas, hair salons, nail salons, and other entities that provide massage therapy, will remain closed in the "yellow" phase. Pennsylvania Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine explained why these businesses will remain closed: “It is impossible to practice social distancing when you have a hands-on treatment." We have heard from the Department of Health that massage therapy may be  practiced in a medical setting, so long as practitioners wear N95 masks, face shields, and disposable medical gowns, and are seeking clarification.

April 20: Self-employed individuals in Pennsylvania can apply for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance as of April 18.

April 7: Due to the COVID-19 crisis and various stay-at-home orders, the Pennsylvania Department of State requested a waiver to temporarily suspend the State Board of Massage Therapy’s regulations related to CPR certification. For the duration of the pandemic, the Board will consider any CPR certification that was in effect on March 17, 2020, to remain in effect through December 31, 2020. For anyone needing to obtain new CPR certification during the pandemic (for initial licensure or reactivation), the Board will waive the hands-on requirement and accept online CPR certification.

March 24: Governor Wolf granted the Department of State’s request to suspend restrictions on distance learning for continuing education requirements for certain licensed professionals. Many licensing boards of the Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs have ongoing continuing education requirements. Although only a few boards are currently in renewal, many “in-person” continuing education programs are canceling courses or closing education centers and it is unknown how long they may be impacted. The governor granted a suspension of restrictions that limited the ability of licensees to take classes online or participate in distance-learning opportunities for the current biennial renewal period to permit all licensees to complete their continuing education online during the COVID-19 pandemic.

March 23: Governor Tom Wolf ordered all non-life-sustaining businesses in Pennsylvania to close their physical locations as of 8:00 p.m. March 19, to slow the spread of COVID-19. Enforcement actions against businesses that do not close physical locations will begin at 12:01 a.m. Saturday, March 21. “To protect the health and safety of all Pennsylvanians, we need to take more aggressive mitigation actions,” said Gov. Wolf. “This virus is an invisible danger that could be present everywhere. We need to act with the strength we use against any other severe threat. And, we need to act now before the illness spreads more widely.”

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Rhode Island

June 1: Personal services, including barbershops, salons, and businesses providing braiding, nail care, waxing, and massage therapy, may reopen June 1, 2020, in Phase 2 of Reopening RI: Navigating Our Way. Businesses that reopen should follow the state-developed safety guidelines at www.reopeningri.com

May 26: Governor Raimondo extended Phase 1 of Reopening RI through June 1, 2020. It appears that Phase 2, which includes massage therapy, barbershops and, salons, will begin on June 1, though there are very few, very basic guidelines highlighted for barbershops and salons in the Phase 2 document. We will continue to seek clarity and provide updates as they are available.

April 3: Receive an email when the COVID-19 emergency unemployment insurance application becomes available by following this link:

March 26: No later than 5:00 p.m. on Monday, March 23, 2020, all close-contact business (businesses that cannot maintain social distancing with their customers) including, but not limited to, gymnasiums, fitness centers, hair salons and barbershops, nail salons, spas, and tattoo parlors shall cease in-person operations.

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South Carolina

May 18: South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster and accelerateSC announced on May 11, 2020, that close contact professions such as massage and cosmetology may return to work May 18, 2020. Guidelines for both massage therapy and cosmetologists can be found on the Board of Massage Therapy website.

April 1: The SC Emergency Management Division and the SC Department of Commerce have developed a list of industries deemed “non-essential” that will be closed temporarily effective 5:00 p.m. on April 1, 2020. “Non-essential” businesses, venues, facilities, services, and activities will be closed to non-employees and will not be open for access or use by the public. Such businesses include close-contact service providers such as barber shops, hair salons, waxing and threading salons, nail salons and spas, and massage-therapy establishments and massage services.

March 25: The Massage/Bodywork Panel is continuing to monitor the challenges presented by COVID-19 (coronavirus) as the situation progresses, and will provide additional guidance in regards to issues that may emerge, as circumstances warrant. There is no order to stop, but we recommend you follow social distancing protocols, and suggest that licensees review and be familiar with federal OSHA and CDC information regarding COVID-19 and the workplace, businesses, and employees.

To proactively address the concerns regarding COVID-19, the Panel will allow all approved licensed massage schools to offer pre-licensure course work to be delivered online in lieu of meeting face-to-face in the classroom as required by the Panel’s statutory provision. This distance education will be limited to the theory hours of instruction for Anatomy and Physiology, Pathology, Business, and Massage Theory Review. The Panel’s temporary emergency provision is a result of Governor McMaster’s mandate that all state colleges must deliver online education in lieu of meeting face-to-face with students from March 16 through March 31.

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South Dakota

May 14: South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem announced the Back to Normal Plan on April 28, 2020, enouraging businesses to "resume operations in a manner that allows for reasonable physical distancing, good hygiene, and appropriate sanitation [...] Consider restricting occupancy and continue innovating in this uncertain environment."

March 31: Gov. Kristi Noem signed an executive order on Monday setting a baseline for decision-making related to the novel coronavirus in South Dakota. Employers should implement the recommended CDC hygiene practices and other business strategies designed to reduce the likelihood of spreading the disease, encourage staff to telework if possible, implement social distancing measures, limit unnecessary work gatherings, limit non-essential travel, and consider regular health checks, including CDC guidance for COVID-19 screening if possible.

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May 5: Governor Lee issued Executive Order No 33, allowing businesses that perform close contact personal services, such as barbershops, hair salons, waxing and threading salons, nail salons, spas providing body treatments, and massage therapy establishments, to reopen May 6, 2020. Note that this does not apply to the six counties surrounding the cities of Memphis, Knoxville, and Nashville. Those returning to practice are encouraged by the state to follow the suggested guidelines for close contact businesses at In addition, please check your local county regulations, as some counties are requiring longer stay-at-home periods.

April 27: On April 24, 2020, Governor Lee had a press conference to describe what the reopening will look like. At this press conference it was noted that “close contact personal services like barbershops, salons, tattoo shops, and massage [establishments] could reopen later in May.”

April 21: Tennessee Governor Bill Lee announced the order for Tennesseans to remain at home will expire April 30, 2020, with the vast majority of businesses in 89 counties allowed to re-open on May 1, 2020. Governor Lee stated, “These businesses will open according to specific guidance that we will provide in accordance with state and national experts in both medicine and business.” As of April 21, it is unclear at this point if massage therapy and cosmetology is included in businesses reopening as there is currently not a list available for reference. We are working with state officials and will provide updates as they come along.

March 26: Metro Nashville Mayor John Cooper issued a "safer at home" order for all of Davidson County for the next 14 days. The order was given in an effort to help limit the spread of COVID-19. The order closes nonessential businesses and urges people to stay at home unless they have an essential need beginning 12:01 a.m. Monday, March 23.

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May 5: Governor Abbott issued GA-21, which provides that licensed cosmetologists and barbers may return to work as of Friday, May 8. There must be six feet social distancing between stations. TDLR has developed guidelines for cosmetology/hair salons, barbershops, and nail salons.

May 1: Yesterday the Texas Attorney General's Office released a guidance letter to address questions relating to Governor Abbott's Executive Order GA-18. Barbershops, cosmetology salons (including nail and esthetician), massage establishments, and laser hair establishments must remain closed until further notice. The Governor's order overrides conflicting local and county orders.

April 28: Under Executive Order GA-18 issued by Texas Governor Greg Abbott on April 27, 2020, all cosmetology salons (including nail salons, estheticians, and mini-salons), barber shops, and massage establishments shall continue to remain closed. Executive Order GA-18 overrides all local and county orders. Whether a salon or shop is a sole proprietorship or not, they are to remain closed until Executive Order GA-18 is amended or rescinded.

April 21: Texas Governor Greg Abbott issued an Executive Order loosening the restrictions on nonessential businesses. Although cosmetology salons, barber shops, or massage establishments remain closed for services, starting April 24, 2020, these businesses may begin selling products via pickup, delivery by mail, or delivery to customers’ doorstep. Delivery must be in strict compliance with the terms required by the Texas Department of State Health Services, which can be found at The Governor states the next step in the re-opening process for Texas will be announced April 27, 2020.

April 20: Per the Texas Department of Licensing Massage Establishments, Cosmetology Salons and Barbershops are still closed. Per a previous statement on March 31 by TDLR, all licensed massage therapy, cosmetology, and barber services are not to be offered. This new executive order does allow these businesses as of April 24 to sell products by pick up, mail, or home delivery.

April 2: The Texas Department of Licensing announces provisions to allow cosmetology, barbering, and massage therapy schools to offer practical instructions remotely, utilizing technologies such as videos of hands-on work, electronic learning, virtual learning, and other practices that would effectively deliver the practical portion of the school’s curriculum to ensure that a student develops the job skills and knowledge to obtain a license in Texas. Remote practical instruction does not include internship or apprenticeship instructional hours.

April 1: Governor Greg Abbott's Executive Order GA-08 is subject to expiration at 11:59 p.m. on April 30, 2020, absent further direction. To avoid scenarios that could lead to hundreds of thousands of deaths, the Governor ordered that every person in Texas shall, except where necessary to provide or obtain essential services, minimize social gatherings and minimize in-person contact with people who are not in the same household. The order is effective 12:01 a.m. on April 2, 2020, and continues through April 30, 2020, subject to extension based on the status of COVID-19 in Texas and the recommendations of the CDC and the White House Coronavirus Task Force. Failure to comply with any executive order issued during the COVID-19 disaster is an offense punishable by a fine not to exceed $1,000, confinement in jail for a term not to exceed 180 days, or both fine and confinement.

Effective April 2, 2020, only essential services are allowed. Only people providing essential services are permitted to be out in public providing services. This new order prohibits services from being provided by massage therapists, barbers, and cosmetologists.

March 24: To help keep its licensees ready and available to assist with combating the spread of the COVID-19 virus, the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) is taking the following actions: Waiving continuing education requirements for all licenses expiring in March, April, and May 2020. Licensees will still submit their renewal applications, pay the required fees, and have their criminal histories checked, but they will not need to complete any required continuing education requirements this licensing cycle. The Texas Department of Licensing reminds other practitioners that they must continue to observe sanitary requirements. Anyone seeking guidance about whether to continue providing services should contact their local health departments or county judges, who are authorized to make that decision.

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April 29: Governor Gary R. Herbert issued an Executive Order that moves Utah into the “Moderate Risk Phase” beginning on May 1, 2020. Personal services provided by barbers, cosmetologists, and nail technicians may return to practice, but must follow strict safety protocols

March 31: Utah Governor Gary Herbery issued a "Stay Home, Stay Safe" directive to be in place until 11:59 p.m. on April 13, 2020.

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May 21: According to the Vermont COVID-19 website, "Health and beauty businesses, gyms, fitness studios, salons, spas, and other similar businesses," including any retail in these establishments, remain closed. Guidelines for reopening are being developed.

March 23: Governor Phil Scott has ordered all "close-contact businesses" in the state—spas, barbershops, nail and hair salons, gyms, and fitness centers, as well as tattoo parlors—to close by Monday, March 23, at 8:00 p.m. The new restrictions are in place until April 15, according to the order. Such businesses are "unable to comply with guidelines for social distancing," the governor's office said in a Saturday morning press release.

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May 13: Virginia Governor Ralph S. Northam issued Executive Order 62, extending the closures of the following close personal contact businesses in the Northern Virginia regions until May 28, 2020: beauty salons, barbershops, spas, massage establishments, and any other business performing personal grooming services that would not comply with physical distancing guidelines to remain six feet apart.

May 4: Governor Ralph Northam outlined a three-phase plan to ease restrictions on businesses, and said he will extend key provisions of Executive Order 53 at least through May 14, 2020, not May 8, 2020.

April 21: On April 15, 2020, Virginia Governor Ralph S. Northam amended Executive Order No. 53 and extended the closure of all public access to recreational and entertainment businesses from March 24, 2020, through to May 7, 2020. These businesses include beauty salons, barbershops, spas, massage establishments, tanning salons, tattoo shops, and any other location where personal care or grooming services are performed that would not be able to comply with social distancing guidelines to remain six feet apart.

March 31: Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam issued a stay-at-home order Monday as cases of the coronavirus rise nationwide. Northam said people should only leave their homes to obtain food, supplies or medical care, or for exercise. All gatherings of more than 10 people are banned. Following his previous executive order, all restaurants and nonessential retail stores may continue to stay open if they limit the number of people in a space to 10 or less. Any person holding a gathering of 10 or more people can be charged with a Class 1 misdemeanor.

March 25: Governor Northam announced on Monday that he would be signing Executive Order 53, which would take effect at the end of Tuesday (11:59 p.m. on March 24) ordering some non-essential services, including all recreation and entertainment services, to close. Hair salons, barbers, massage therapists, and similar non-essential services who can't feasibly carry out social distancing must close.

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May 13: Governor Inslee issued Executive Order 20-25.3 on May 4, 2020, extending stay at home orders through May 31, 2020, for those who do not perform essential health services.

April 20: Exam vendor DL Roope has determined it is necessary and appropriate to close test centers in Washington State through May 4, 2020 for practical and written exams for Cosmetology, Barber, Manicurists, Esthetics, Master Esthetics, and Instructors.  All candidate exam sessions scheduled between March 18, 2020, and May 4, 2020, have been canceled. DL Roope anticipates re-opening test centers on May 5, 2020, however, the specific date will be dependent on the ever-changing circumstances. Candidates will receive a new pre-registration email on or around May 4, 2020, after which they can schedule into any open session without contacting the IQT offices.

April 13: Governor Inslee’s proclamation 20-25 allows health-care providers to continue essential health services. Many services provided by massage therapists are considered nonessential. No in-person appointment is risk-free, even if the patient and massage therapist appear well. To help control the spread of COVID-19, treatment should be limited to patients with a clear and documented urgent medical need.

April 9: On the evening of Thursday, April 2, 2020, Governor Jay Inslee announced a 30-day extension to his “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” proclamation. This is a statewide closure of entertainment, leisure, and nonessential services that will remain in effect through May 4, 2020.

April 2: The Secretary of Health has extended license expiration dates for health professions, including massage therapy licenses, for licenses up for renewal between April 1, 2020, and September 30, 2020. This extension will allow health professionals to promote continued patient safety during the COVID-19 outbreak. Because renewal payment won’t be required until September 30, 2020, it will also reduce the economic burden on those providers not able to work during this emergency.

March 26: Jay Inslee, Governor of the state of Washington, imposed a Stay Home – Stay Healthy Order throughout Washington State by prohibiting all people in Washington State from leaving their homes or participating in social, spiritual, and recreational gatherings of any kind regardless of the number of participants, and all non-essential businesses in Washington State from conducting business. All people in Washington State shall immediately cease leaving their home or place of residence except: (1) to conduct or participate in essential activities, and/or (2) for employment in essential business services. For a list of essential business services, follow this link:

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West Virginia

April 29: Businesses offering barbering, cosmetology, and other cosmetology-related services in West Virginia will be permitted to resume operations in Week 2 of the reopening schedule on May 4, 2020, provided they follow the safety guidelines provided by the State of West Virginia Board of Barbers and Cosmetologists.

March 25: With most of West Virginia’s surrounding states ordering non-essential businesses to close or ordering residents to shelter in place, Governor Jim Justice said Monday that he would order residents to stay home and close non-essential businesses starting tonight due to the coronavirus. “If your business or operation is not essential, then you’ll be temporarily closed,” Justice said. Click the link to view what is considered essential services—it appears cosmetology and massage therapy services are not.

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April 21: Governor Tony Evers extended the emergency stay at home order through Tuesday, May 26. Massage therapy is in the list of "Health Care and Public Health Operations"(paragraph 8) and is listed as a reason people can leave their homes for services.  Social Distancing Requirements (paragraph 16) includes: " Maintaining social distancing of six (6 ) feet between people, washing hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds as frequently as possible or using hand sanitizer; covering coughs or sneeze with sleeves or elbows, not hands; regularly cleaning high-touch surfaces; not shaking hands;" and following all other public health recommendations issued by the DHS and the CDC. Hair salons, barbershops, nail salons, day spas, electrolysis providers, waxing salons, eyebrow-care establishments, tattoo parlors, body art establishments, and tanning facilities are still closed through May 26.  We are working with the Governor's office and other state officials to educate them about massage therapy and get clarification.

March 24: Governor Tony Evers issued an Emergency Order, which states: "Social distancing—the practice of keeping at least six feet apart from others and avoiding direct physical contact—is the only effective means of slowing the rate of infection. Despite prior emergency orders banning mass gatherings, the rates of infection continue to drastically increase, necessitating additional measures to slow the rate of infection and save lives.... Through Executive Order #72, and at the direction of Governor Tony Evers, I, Andrea Palm, Secretary-designee of the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, order the following: ... All of the following facilities shall be closed: Salons and spas. This includes, but is not limited to, hair salons, barber shops, nail salons, day spas, electrolysis providers, waxing salons, eyebrow-care establishments, tattoo parlors, body art establishments, and tanning facilities ... For purposes of this Order, individuals may leave their residence to work for or obtain services at any Healthcare and Public Health Operations."

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May 14: Wyoming State Health Officer Alexia Harrist announced that all nail salons, hair salons, barbershops, cosmetology, esthetic services, and massage therapy services (excluding massages performed for medical purposes, which are exempt from the Public Health Order) may re-open or continue to operate on May 15, 2020 according to certain conditions.

April 9: Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon extended statewide closure orders to April 30, 2020, to help slow the spread of COVID-19 amid the pandemic. His previous order was set to expire on April 17, 2020. The orders include closing public places, including schools, bars, restaurants and more, plus banning gatherings of 10 or more people.

March 30: Effective immediately and continuing through April 17, 2020, unless revoked or extended by the Wyoming Department of Healthy before April 17, 2020, the following are ordered closed to members of the public in order to stop the spread of COVID-19: nail salons, hair salons, and barber shops; cosmetology, electrology, and esthetics services; massage businesses (excluding massage performed for medical purposes).

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If you have ideas for ways that the profession can support our community and one another during this time, please share them with us at We’d love to hear from you.