Chapter 108
2019 -- H 5677 SUBSTITUTE A
Enacted 07/08/2019

A N   A C T

Introduced By: Representatives Williams, Cassar, Almeida, Vella-Wilkinson, and
Date Introduced: February 27, 2019

It is enacted by the General Assembly as follows:
     SECTION 1. Sections 5-10-1 and 5-10-29 of the General Laws in Chapter 5-10 entitled
"Barbers, Hairdressers, Cosmeticians, Manicurists and Estheticians" are hereby amended to read
as follows:
     5-10-1. Definitions.
     The following words and phrases, when used in this chapter, are construed as follows:
     (1) "Apprentice barber" means an employee whose principal occupation is service with a
barber who has held a current license as a barber for at least three (3) years with a view to
learning the art of barbering, as defined in subdivision (15) of this section.
     (2) "Barber" means any person who shaves or trims the beard; waves, dresses, singes,
shampoos, or dyes the hair; or applies hair tonics, cosmetic preparations, antiseptics, powders, oil
clays, or lotions to scalp, face, or neck of any person; or cuts the hair of any person; gives facial
and scalp massages; or treatments with oils, creams, lotions, or other preparations.
     (3) "Board" means the state board of barbering and hairdressing as provided for in this
     (4) "Department" means the Rhode Island department of health.
     (5) "Division" means the division of professional regulation within the department of
     (6) "Esthetician" means a person who engages in the practice of esthetics, and is licensed
as an esthetician.
     (7) "Esthetician shop" means a shop licensed under this chapter to do esthetics of any
     (8) "Esthetics" means the practice of cleansing, stimulating, manipulating, and
beautifying skin, including, but not limited to, the treatment of such skin problems as
dehydration, temporary capillary dilation, excessive oiliness, and clogged pores.
     (9) "Hair design shop" means a shop licensed under this chapter to do barbering or
hairdressing/cosmetology, or both, to any person.
     (10) "Hairdresser and cosmetician" means any person who arranges, dresses, curls, cuts,
waves, singes, bleaches, or colors the hair or treats the scalp, or manicures the nails of any person,
either with or without compensation, or who, by the use of the hands or appliances, or of cosmetic
preparations, antiseptics, tonics, lotions, creams, powders, oils or clays, engages, with or without
compensation, in massaging, cleansing, stimulating, manipulating, exercising, or beautifying, or
in doing similar work upon the neck, face, or arms, or who removes superfluous hair from the
body of any person.
     (11) "Instructor" means any person licensed as an instructor under the provisions of this
     (12) "Manicuring shop" means a shop licensed under this chapter to do manicuring only
on the nails of any person.
     (13) "Manicurist" means any person who engages in manicuring for compensation and is
duly licensed as a manicurist.
     (14) "School" means a school approved under chapter 40 of title 16, as amended, devoted
to the instruction in, and study of, the theory and practice of barbering, hairdressing, and cosmetic
therapy, esthetics, and/or manicuring.
     (15) "The practice of barbering" means the engaging by any licensed barber in all, or any
combination of, the following practices: shaving or trimming the beard or cutting the hair; giving
facial and scalp massages or treatments with oils, creams, lotions, or other preparations, either by
hand or mechanical appliances; singeing, shampooing, arranging, dressing, curling, waving,
chemical waving, hair relaxing, or dyeing the hair or applying hair tonics; or applying cosmetic
preparations, antiseptics, powders, oils, clays, or lotions to scalp, face, or neck.
     (16) "The practice of hairdressing and cosmetic therapy" means the engaging by any
licensed hairdresser and cosmetician in any one or more of the following practices: the
application of the hands or of mechanical or electrical apparatus, with or without cosmetic
preparations, tonics, lotions, creams, antiseptics, or clays, to massage, cleanse, stimulate,
manipulate, exercise, or otherwise to improve or to beautify the scalp, face, neck, shoulders,
arms, bust, or upper part of the body; or the manicuring of the nails of any person; or the
removing of superfluous hair from the body of any person; or the arranging, dressing, curling,
waving, weaving, cleansing, cutting, singeing, bleaching, coloring, or similarly treating the hair
of any person. Provided, however, that the practice of hairdressing and cosmetic therapy shall not
include natural hair braiding.
     (17) "The practice of manicuring" means the cutting, trimming, polishing, tinting,
coloring, or cleansing the nails of any person.
     5-10-29. Persons exempt from chapter.
     (a) The provisions and penalties of this chapter do not apply to licensed physicians,
osteopaths, chiropractors, or registered nurses, or natural hair braiders, when acting within the
scope of their professions or occupations as defined by law.
     (b) Natural hair braiding. Natural hair braiding is a service of twisting, wrapping,
weaving, extending, locking, or braiding hair by hand or with mechanical devices.
     (1) Natural hair braiding includes:
     (i) The use of natural or synthetic hair extensions, natural or synthetic hair and fibers,
decorative beads, and other hair accessories;
     (ii) Minor trimming of natural hair or hair extensions incidental to twisting, wrapping,
weaving, extending, locking, or braiding hair;
     (iii) The use of topical agents, such as conditioners, gels, moisturizers, oils, pomades, and
shampoos in conjunction with hair braiding;
     (iv) The making of wigs from natural hair, natural fibers, synthetic fibers, and hair
extensions; and
     (v) Mechanical devices mean clips, combs, crochet hooks, curlers, curling irons, hairpins,
rollers, scissors, blunt-tipped needles, thread, and hair binders.
     (2) Natural hair braiding is commonly known as "African-style hair braiding" but is not
limited to any particular cultural, ethnic, racial, or religious forms of hair styles.
     (3) Natural hair braiding does not include:
     (i) The application of dyes, reactive chemicals, or other preparations to alter the color of
the hair or to straighten, curl, or alter the structure of the hair; or
     (ii) The use of chemical hair joining agents, such as synthetic tape, keratin bonds, or
fusion bonds.
     (c) Any violation of this section shall result in a fine of fifty dollars ($50.00) for a first
violation, one hundred dollars ($100) for a second violation, and one hundred fifty dollars ($150)
for each subsequent violation.
     SECTION 2. This act shall take effect upon passage.
LC000009/SUB A