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For Immediate Release:
May 6, 2013
Contact: 518-486-9846
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Summer is almost upon us and that signals a time for celebrations. Whether it’s a high school prom, a graduation, a wedding or any other festive event, people will be placing a high priority on looking their best for such occasions.

As customers frequent beauty enhancement establishments, they have to be aware that all may not be as it appears. Consumers can be victims of unsatisfactory service, and may also be putting themselves in danger unless they do their homework.

All beauty treatment specialists as well as spas and salons must be licensed by the New York Department of State to legally operate within New York State. Certain treatments can be dangerous if they aren’t performed by properly trained and licensed professionals.  They can lead to bacterial infections, transmission of diseases, adverse reactions, and even physical injury.

When choosing a salon, you should look for a valid business license on display at the entrance or reception area in the spa or salon where the licensed activities are performed as well as a license with a photograph for each operator. 

As prom and graduation season approaches, we remind youth and their guardians to think about their health and safety when choosing a salon or specific treatment. Minors must take extra precaution when planning a visit to a salon and should be accompanied by an adult, especially when soliciting treatments that involve chemicals or other sensitive processes. 

The New York Department of State’s Division of Consumer Protection offers these tips and guidelines when visiting appearance enhancement establishments:

  • Verify that the individual as well as the beauty enhancement business is licensed to offer services in New York State.

  • Be aware that not all practitioners are licensed to perform all services so make sure the license posted matches the service you are having done.

  • Make sure the salon is clean and there is adequate lighting.  Make sure that the tools and equipment being used are properly stored and disinfected before use.

  • Request that gloves are worn when having treatments involving waxing or extractions. Insist that capes, tables and chairs are sanitized and scissors, combs, razors, tweezers, clippers are disinfected between patrons. Please be your own advocate. 

  • If you feel that you are having an adverse reaction to any service performed, speak up immediately.

  • In addition to licenses, it is very important that you receive an itemized list of all services performed and the prices charged for those services prior to starting a treatment.

Before visiting an establishment you may want to verify if the business and individual is licensed by visiting the Department of State Licensing Services’ online database at: or by contacting the Division of Licensing Services at (518) 474-4429.

To file a consumer complaint against a business or individual, please contact the Division of Consumer Protection Hotline at 1 (800) 697-1220 or visit our website at

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