Nail Technology

Nail technicians don’t just create beautiful nails; they also help people relax and unwind. When you become a California nail technician, you can work with tons of different people, use all sorts of new techniques, and stay ahead of current trends and styles

Whether you decide to work in a huge urban area like Los Angeles or get started in an upscale suburban area, you can take the first step now!

Nail Tech Schools in Los Angeles
State License Requirements

As you get ready to start your nail technician career in California, you can apply for your license through the California Board of Barbering and Cosmetology. When you apply, you must pay $119 in application and examination fees. Once you pass your licensing exams, you can begin your career in this exciting field.

Education Details

Training is key in any beauty industry. Before you can work with clients to give them a reverse French manicure, a full set of gel nails, or creative nail art, you have to master some important techniques. At a California nail school, you need to get at least 350 hours of training to start the licensing process. Your training must cover these mandatory topics.

Courses Taught at Nail Tech Schools in CA

  • Water and oil manicures
  • Hand and arm massage
  • Pedicuring
  • Artificial nails
  • Nail analysis
  • Nail tips
  • Nail wraps
  • Nail repairs
  • Health and safety
  • Disinfection and sanitation
  • Bacteriology, anatomy, and physiology
License Renewal
License Renewal Hours
2 Years*
License Renewal Period

California nail technicians prepare for their manicurist licensure by completing a 400-hour training program. This is how you can get real experience. Once you complete training and qualify for their manicurist license, you will need to renew your license every two years in odd-numbered years. The fee for renewal is $50, and must be submitted with this application. Unlike some states, California does not require continuing education units to maintain your license. However, when you speak with schools, be sure to ask what ways nail techs can stay current with state regulations.

Job Outlook Increase
Between 2012 - 2022

Working in nail technology can be rewarding in so many different ways. First, there are lots of ways you can influence your earning potential and job outlook. The average salary for a nail technician in California is $22,240 per year (Bureau of Labor Statistics<, 2016). Job openings are expected to increase 19% between 2014 and 2024 (O*Net, 2016). People in California like to look good, and for many of them, their jobs depend on it. Business professionals, models, and entertainment professionals all need to maintain their personal appearance, so you may have the opportunity to build a solid base of clients at a local nail shop or beauty salon.

Working as a Nail Technician

A nail technician is responsible for the appearance and grooming of client's nails through manicures, pedicures, nail shaping, cuticle grooming, callus removal, synthetic nail treatments and nail polish application. Before you become a nail tech in California there is a list of requirements.

  • Complete an approved manicurist program.
  • Pass the license examinations.
  • Apply for your license and keep it current.

A 16% growth is expected within this field in the next 6 years.

State Board, Networking & Associations

California Board of Barbering and Cosmetology
PO Box 944226
Sacramento, CA94244-2260
2420 Del Paso Road, Suite 100
Sacramento, CA 95834
Cosmetology Board Phone Number: 1-800-952-5210
Fax Number: 916-575-7281

The California State Board of Cosmetology is a valuable resource and can answer additional questions about obtaining a California state cosmetology license.

To excel as a nail technologist or manicurist in California, it is vital that you join a network of professionals and like-minded peers. The following are organizations that we recommend joining:

Find the Beauty Schools in California that interest you below,

Palace Beauty College | Los Angeles - CA
Bellus Academy- North San Diego County Campus | Poway - CA
Blake Austin College Beauty Academy | Vacaville - CA
Lu Ross Academy of Beauty & Health | Ventura - CA
Avalon School of Cosmetology | Alameda - CA
Milan Institute | Bakersfield - CA
Newberry School of Beauty | Chatsworth - CA
W Academy of Salon + Spa | Danville - CA
Bellus Academy- East San Diego County Campus | El Cajon - CA
Milan Institute of Cosmetology | Fairfield - CA
Milan Institute | Fresno - CA
Milan Institute of Cosmetology | La Quinta - CA
Aveda Institute - Los Angeles | Los Angeles - CA
Milan Institute - Merced | Merced - CA
Paul Mitchell the School Modesto | Modesto - CA
Bellus Academy- South San Diego County Campus | National City - CA
Milan Institute of Cosmetology | Visalia - CA