Patricia Billie Miller


Patricia Billie Miller



June 9, 2024

New Law Enhances Training for Connecticut Hairstylists on Curly, Coiled, and Wavy Hair

New hairstylists and barbers in Connecticut will receive training on caring for a more diverse range of hair types under a new law celebrated Monday by the governor and supporters during a ceremonial bill signing in Stamford.

The law, which was passed during this year’s legislative session, requires that the curriculum for barbers and hairstylists include training to provide services for people with curly, coiled and wavy hair.

The bill was championed by Sen. Patricia Billie Miller, a Stamford Democrat who chairs the legislature’s Black and Puerto Rican Caucus. During Monday’s event at Vanity Studio in Stamford, Miller said the new policy would help ensure that no one is turned away from hair salons based on a stylist’s unfamiliarity with textured hair.

“For me, it’s about social justice,” Miller said, “it’s about inclusivity, it’s about making sure that there’s equity, because I was one of those individuals where doors were closed on me. When someone walks into a salon, they should be able to have the service, and not — and I’ve been there — say, ‘we don’t do that type of hair.’”

Before putting his signature on ceremonial copies of the bill, Gov. Ned Lamont credited Miller with leading passage of the new law. The governor said the policy was part of an ongoing effort to ensure the civil rights of all residents.

“This is a battle that never ends and we keep fighting it everyday,” Lamont said. “This is just one more small way that we’re able to fight this battle: treat everybody with respect they need, starting with how they look and how their hair is treated.”

ShaQueen Valentine, co-founder of Vanity Studio, said that diversifying the training of barbers and stylists would open up opportunities for hair care businesses across Connecticut.

“This opens the market up for you as a business owner as well as allow these clients to feel welcome in every salon,” Valentine said. “The curly, coily curls are also movers and shakers and they’ve got places to go and people to see and they want to feel welcome and feel as though there is a stylist in your salon that is knowledgeable and skilled in their hair texture.”

The new policy builds on the 2021 CROWN Act, which prohibited discrimination based on natural hairstyles like Afros, dreadlocks, twists among others. Connecticut’s new textured hair training requirement puts it alongside just three other states: Louisiana, New York, and Minnesota.

Miller said she hoped Connecticut would next review training requirements for skin care professionals. Everyone should feel confident they can receive quality services from cosmetology businesses licensed by the state, she said.

“I should be able to walk into a salon [run] by someone that does not look like me and ask for services as long as your door is open,” she said.


Posted by Hugh McQuaid