Certificate of Qualification in Esthetics

Who can register?

Anyone can register to challenge the BeautyCouncil Certificate of Qualification in Esthetics Exam, provided you have completed 800 school hours or 2,000 work experience hours in the trade of Esthetics.

The exam is thorough and vigorous.

We encourage all registrants to earn a diploma from a PTIB accredited cosmetology school prior to taking the exam. All other registrants are welcome to challenge the exam, provided you have completed 800 school hours or 2000 work experience hours. By registering online to take the exam, you are attesting to having completed these hours. You will upload your paperwork (or diploma) confirming your hours after you register.

The reference textbook is Milady Standard Foundations (12E) and Milady Standard Foundations: Link

Exam cost

  • $200 plus GST for BeautyCouncil Members
  • $300 plus GST for non-members.

Registrants who do not pass the exam may apply to retake failed portion(s) of the exam (theory, practical, or both) within 2 years (no limit on the number of retakes). Retakes are $100 plus GST ($105). A pass requires a score of 70% or higher.

The exam takes place in a single day as outlined in the exam date registration page. There are two parts to the exam and both are at the venue listed in your confirmation email.

Theory – This is a 120 question, 2 hour multiple choice exam taken on an internet-enabled device provided by BeautyCouncil. You must score a minimum of 70% to pass this exam.

Practical – This is an in-person exam at a location listed on your registration email. You perform work on your model according to the exam outline below. This exam usually requires between 5 hours and 25 minutes to complete. An examiner will oversee your work and score your work as you complete it. You must score a minimum of 70% to pass this exam.

Steps to earn your Certificate of Qualification in Esthetics:

1. Join BeautyCouncil as a member here (LINK).

2. Log in and go to Certifications / Certificates of Qualification. Click “Tap here to see the exam schedule”. Choose your desired exam date. If no dates are available, do not call the office. All available dates are posted on this calendar. We post new exams regularly.

3. Submit your complete and accurate details, and your payment. You will receive a confirmation email.

4.Upload your diploma(s), and/or proof of hours by navigating to the members page (LINK). Under “What would you like to do?” select Share Documents, and upload your documents.

4. Attend the exam as detailed in your confirmation email.

You will be notified of pass/fail via email, within 2-4 weeks. If you pass the exam, you will receive a digital certificate and a hardcopy certificate.

If you do not attend your scheduled exam, or arrive more than 15 minutes late, your exam fee will be forfeited. Cancellations must be given 72 hours in advance and can be done by logging in at www.beautycouncil.ca.

Attending the Exam

COVID-19 protocols are in place for all exams. All registrants, examiners, models, must wear a mask at all times. During segments of the exam where the model must remove the mask, the registrant will be required to wear a face shield in addition to a mask. You and your model will be asked to answer COVID-19 screening questions. Persons presenting with symptoms or having had recent exposure to COVID-19 will be asked to leave the premises and rebook at a later date. You will be required to sanitize your hands upon entry.

Registrants will wear clean, professional attire (uniforms are preferred) and wear no nail enhancements or coloured nail polish. Registrants will turn off cell phones and devices and refrain from talking during the exam unless prompted by the examiner. Only registrants and models will be permitted to stay in the exam area. Models must not be beauty school students, beauty professionals, or be working or have experience in the beauty industry.

  • You and your model must arrive on time. Registrants who arrive more than 15 minutes late will not be admitted and will be required to reschedule for a later date.
  • Present your valid government-issued Canadian photo ID, and your model’s photo ID. The name on the ID will appear on your certificate.
  • Submit your model waiver form.

Please ensure you have everything on the equipment checklist provided. There will be a short lunch break. Please pack a lunch.

The Theory exam:

At the exam venue, you will be provided with an internet-enabled device to take our 120 question online multiple choice theory exam.

The Practical exam:

1. General trade practices – evaluated concurrently. Less than 70% in this category = fail for the entire practical exam.

  • Professional grooming
  • Proper hygienic and sanitation procedures
  • Communication
  • Professionalism

2. Full Facial (including skin analysis & complete massage) – 75 minutes

  • Sanitary station set up
  • Proper draping procedures
  • Hygienic application procedures
  • Eye & lip makeup removal
  • Cleansing
  • Rinsing
  • Toning
  • Skin analysis with completion of a consultation sheet
  • Eye brow shaping (measuring/tweezing)
  • Application & removal of exfoliant
  • Application of hot towels
  • Demonstration of one manual extraction
  • Facial massage
  • Application & removal of massage cream
  • Four basic massage movements (face, décolleté, shoulders)
  • Application & removal of facial mask (forehead to collar bone. No gel or clear
  • masks)
  • Application of moisturizer

3. Evening Makeup – 30 minutes

  • Sanitary station setup
  • Hygienic application procedures
  • Demonstrate application & colour match of foundation
  • Powder & blush, including contouring for evening
  • Designing of lips (application & colour match of lipliner & lipstick)
  • Designing of eyes: Eyebrows, eyeshadow (minimum three colours), eyeliner , mascara
  • Sharpening of pencils (brow, shadow, liner, lip)
  • End result is complimentary to model

4. Waxing (under arm, one leg – knee down, including knee)

20 minutes

  • Model’s hair should be visible – at least ¼”
  • Sanitary station setup
  • Hygienic application procedures
  • Preparation of skin before waxing
  • Testing of wax temperature
  • Correct application of wax
  • Correct wax removal techniques
  • Removal of wax residue
  • Application of post-wax soothing lotion
  • Final results

5. Nail Care (French manicure – one hand, Pedicure with red polish – one foot) – 60 minutes. Models must come with polish on one hand or foot to demonstrate polish removal

  • Sanitary station setup
  • Hygienic application procedures
  • Removal of polish (hand or foot)
  • French manicure on one hand:
  • Demonstrate proper filing techniques
  • Cuticle care (cuticle removing, soaking, loosening, trimming)
  • Massage – fingertip to elbow. Two or more massage movements
  • Proper polish techniques (basecoat, French style polish, topcoat)
  • Pedicure with red polish (one foot):
  • Demonstrate soaking
  • Demonstrate application & removal of scrub
  • Callous removal
  • Proper filing & shaping techniques
  • Cuticle care (cuticle remover, loosening & trimming)
  • Massage – toes to knee. Two or more massage movements
  • Proper polish techniques (basecoat, red polish, top coat)

Practical Examination Supplies & Checklist

BeautyCouncil provides a bed, table, stool, chair, magnifying lamp and access to a sink with hot water (for hot towels).

You must bring the following professional* (not drug store) products and equipment to complete all exam services. Products must be approved for sale in Canada (for example, they must have English and French on the label, include metric measurements, and be approved for use on clients). Professional products can be purchased at beauty suppliers such as West Coast Beauty, Modern Beauty, CosmoProf, Icon, and more. Borrowing is prohibited.

  • Government-issued photo ID
  • Model Release Form
  • Client Consultation Form
  • Mask
  • Face shield


  • Cleanser
  • Large water bowl
  • Cotton pads
  • Visible face mask
  • Facial tissue
  • Toner
  • Alcohol/antiseptic lotion
  • Mask brush
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Exfoliant (scrub)
  • Eyebrow brush
  • Moisturizer
  • Latex/vinyl gloves for extraction
  • 10-15 hand towels
  • Massage cream/oil
  • Tweezers
  • Blanket for model
  • An appropriate strapless gown for model
  • Clean headband and/or towel to cover model’s head
  • Two single-sized bedsheets (white only) of sufficient length to cover a facial bed/chair and drape model.


  • Foundation
  • Mascara
  • Lip liner
  • Disposable mascara wands
  • Contouring powder/cream
  • Eyebrow colour (pencil/powder)
  • Eyeshadow (minimum three colours)
  • Disposable make-up sponges or foundation brush
  • Powder
  • Lip brush
  • Lip colour
  • Blush
  • Empty make-up tray pallet
  • Disposable lip wands
  • Eyeliner
  • Clean make-up brushes
  • Clean brushes
  • 99.9% alcohol


  • Cleansing pads, gauze, and/or cotton pads
  • Wood spatulas (multiple)
  • Soft liquid wax
  • Tweezers
  • Paper bed roll (just enough to cover bed)
  • Wax pot & extension cord
  • Pre-wax skin sanitizer
  • Post-wax skin soother
  • Scissors
  • Gloves (latex/vinyl)
  • Cotton/muslin wax strips
  • Wax cleaner
  • Baby powder or corn starch

Nail care

  • No metal files or metal cuticle pushers are permitted
  • Gloves for pedicure
  • Cuticle pusher/orangewood sticks
  • Nail polish remover
  • Massage cream/oil
  • Base coat
  • Flat dark red polish
  • Top coat
  • French white/pink duo
  • Supply tray
  • Liquid soap for soaking
  • Paper towels
  • Nail files (natural & artificial)
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Foot sanitizer
  • Cuticle remover
  • Foot paddle
  • Finger soaking bowl
  • White sanitized towels
  • Container for sterile implements
  • Foot soaking tub
  • Small garbage bag
  • Exfoliating pedicure scrub
  • Cotton balls
  • Container for soiled implements
  • Tissue for toe separator
  • Nail polish: base coat, red polish, french white/pink duo, top coat
  • 3-6” extension cord (if using electrical equipment)
  • *No metal files or metal cuticle pushers are permitted