Makeup artists

in georgia deserve beauty, not barriers

At 1,000 hours of required, costly training, Georgia is tied for first for having the most burdensome MUA licensing laws in the country. This is unfair to Georgia’s makeup artists.

It’s 2023: it doesn’t make sense to require makeup artists to spend so much time in a traditional, lengthy program, especially considering alternative options.  Plus, schools don’t teach talent and passion.  Thousands of talented makeup artists have built huge businesses and accumulated millions of followers on social media—and never spent an hour in a traditional program.

The Georgia legislature is considering a bill that would get rid of this 1,000-hour requirement. If this would help you, please fill out our very short form, below, and we will be in touch!

help us increase flexibility and decrease costs for muas in georgia.

This legislation would exempt makeup artists from having to obtain 1,000 hours of school before working. It would also allow threading and blow-dry styling without a full-service license.

We are the Institute for Justice, a nonprofit that works with beauty professionals and lawmakers to create more opportunities in the industry, by changing laws that make it needlessly costly to work.

If this legislation would help you or if you have questions, please fill out the form below and we will be in touch within 48 hours!

did you know:


  • This has saved MUAs money and time and allowed them to focus on building their careers based on their talent, passion, and reputation, and not on a state-issued certificate.
  • In states that don’t require a license to be a makeup artist, clients are protected by existing consumer protection laws.
  • Georgia already allows those working at makeup counters selling products to apply full makeup to any member of the public without a license. What changes when makeup is applied outside of a mall? Why should talented individuals be prohibited from expanding past retail sales?

It’s not fair that beauty professionals face steeper and more costly licensing requirements than many other fields, including those directly linked to health and safety.


Chefs prepare food that is ingested by customers and aren’t required to get a license or go to school. They take a short, simple sanitation course, and the restaurant is subject to inspections. It’s up to the chef whether they want to go to culinary school.  


In Georgia, EMTs – who administer life-saving aid -have to get 150 hours of training to get a license to work. Compare that to 1,000 for makeup artists.


Personal trainers aren’t required to have a license. Tattooing is riskier and more invasive than what makeup artists do, but Georgia does not require a license from the state.


tuition to attend cosmetology school

Aspiring beauty professionals spend, on average, $16,000 to attend state-required cosmetology school. And after spending all this money, many still have to get additional training because their school didn’t teach them what they needed to learn.

average of

borrowed to attend cosmetology school

Students often go into a lot of student loan debt to afford school.  But programs rarely graduate students on time, delaying—or even blocking—aspiring beauty professionals’ entry into the workforce, and increasing their debt burden. 


hours in school to become a MUA

Georgia requires 1,000 hours of traditional school to become a makeup artist – even though there are so many other options to learn, and many of the skills are self-taught.  The state is tied for first most burdensome makeup laws in the country.

While aspiring beauty professionals are in school—spending money and not making money—those in other occupations are learning on the job or practicing their crafts while earning a living from day one. That’s not fair.
Beauty, Not Barriers is an initiative of the nonprofit institute for justice, dedicated to uplifting the beauty industry by breaking down barriers that force far too many beauty artists into debt or out of work, or make it too hard to hire. 
Beauty professionals deserve flexibility and options, like so many other occupations enjoy—not an outdated approach that demands 1,000 hours of expensive, traditional training, regardless of one’s existing talent, skillset, alternative training options, or background.
We believe that makeup artists deserve better.

learn More

The Institute for Justice is a non-profit organization that works alongside beauty professionals and other workers nationwide to change laws that make it hard to earn a living.  So often, state laws require way too much to work in an occupation—like expensive training that can teach things that are not necessary.  

  • There are better, affordable, less challenging alternatives to these kinds of laws.
  • The alternatives would make it easier for existing and aspiring beauty professionals alike to work in the industry.  
  • We support beauty, opportunity, entrepreneurship, professionalism, and safety.  We are against barriers.