Illinois COVID-19 Update: Permission to Practice May 29, 2020

Except in the city of Chicago, hair salons, hair braiders, barbershops, nail salons, spas, massage therapy establishments, waxing centers, cosmetology schools, and other providers of personal care services may resume business operations on May 29, 2020, during Phase III: The Recovery of Governor Pritzker’s Restore Illinois plan. Chicago’s reopening date will come later, however, and Mayor Lightfoot is expected to release a date this week. Please check your local government updates for further information about the reopening schedule in your area.

The Governor and the Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity (DCEO) developed Personal Care Services Guidelines to help ensure a safe reopening. The guidelines state the following:

“In Phase III, services for personal care should be limited to:
i.    Services which can be performed while customer and employee are wearing a face covering over their nose and mouth
ii.    Massages and body treatments (e.g., body wraps, scrubs) of 30 minutes or less”

ABMP is seeking clarification on whether these guidelines are a suggestion or a mandate. We question the 30-minute limit on treatments and the requirement that clients wear masks, which may interfere with massage therapists providing massage and estheticians performing facials. Also, it appears the guidance is mostly geared toward hair salons and barbershops. We are looking for clearer guidance for massage therapists and estheticians.

If you have specific comments or questions after reading the guidelines, contact DCEO Monday–Friday at 800-252-2923 or by email at

Additional Safety Resources

ABMP, ASCP, AHP, and ANP understand there is a fine line between getting back to work and earning an income and protecting the safety of you and your clients. As you consider returning to work, we urge you to make government permission to work only one element of your decision about whether and when to reopen. Please review our comprehensive series of back-to-practice guidelines to help reduce risk and keep you and your clients safe.

We also have helpful forms and printouts available on our website, ( including office policies, screening questionnaires, and posters to remind clients about social distancing and handwashing.

We appreciate your membership and will continue working on your behalf to update you as we learn more. Please check our COVID-19 page ( for updates. Be safe and be well.


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