Oregon Board of Cosmetology Calls On Estheticians to Speak Out About Lasers

In October, the Oregon Board of Cosmetology held a meeting to vote on the issue of banning estheticians from using lasers. They state that with the the ever-increasing technological advances, laser services are becoming a cornerstone of the beauty industry and a large scope of work for estheticians. With the growing market share comes politics and certain forces trying to monopolize these services.

Due to a positive response by Oregon estheticians, the Board has decided to research further, and is planning to revisit the issue of January 27. The Board calls for estheticians to help advocate for their continued use of lasers. Estheticians are encouraged to utilize the letter below to help inform legislators about the skin care industry.

Dear (Include name of specific representative to support the level of intent),

We are writing to make you aware of regulatory changes being considered by the Oregon Board of Cosmetology regarding the use of lasers to provide skin care treatments. The beauty industry has undergone dramatic changes in the last 15 years as consumers’ desire for effective anti-aging treatments has lead to the development of newer technology for skin rejuvenation, hair removal, wrinkle reduction, pigmentation and age spot removal, and non-invasive body contouring.

Some of these technologies have the potential to cause negative effects to the consumer, including burns and scarring, if the user is not properly educated and trained.

Consumer complaints about an office that was operating without proper licensure resulted in the Board of Cosmetology making a recommendation for a 180 day temporary cosmetic laser ban during a meeting on October 14, 2013. After public testimony about the impact this ban would have on the industry and the consumer, the Board voted to delay any ruling until additional information could be gathered for their meeting on January 27, 2014.

A ban on estheticians’ use of lasers would have a drastic impact on businesses that have spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on laser or other aesthetic equipment. There are currently over 13,000 licensed estheticians in the state of Oregon. A ban on estheticians’ use of lasers would drastically impact the income of thousands of estheticians. A ban on estheticians’ use of lasers would impact consumers who demand this type of service.

Employers have spent significant dollars providing training to estheticians to ensure client safety beyond what the laser manufacturer has already supplied.

Our group of estheticians believes that mandatory laser education and training certification is the appropriate route for the state to take to ensure the long-term solution for the cosmetic laser industry in Oregon. Lasers can be safely operated by estheticians. That has been proven repeatedly with the thousands of treatments done daily in medical spas and clinics all over the state. We believe in our constitutional right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. It would be wrong to take away these rights by limiting our ability to be gainfully employed in the work we are trained to do.

Please let the Board of Cosmetology know you support Oregon estheticians and consumers. Advocate they implement a long-term solution requiring education and certification rather than a ban on services at their meeting in January.


(Your names, addresses and contact information)

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