Arizona Eyebrow Threading

Gutierrez v. Aune
Arizona Eyebrow Threaders Fight Irrational Licensing Scheme

Juana Gutierrez eyebrow threading

Juana Gutierrez shouldn't need to stop working to take 600 hours of beauty school classes that don't even teach threading. 

Eyebrow threading is very popular in Arizona.  Threading is a natural and safe method of hair removal that uses a single strand of cotton thread to remove unwanted hair, most commonly from the eyebrows, with no chemicals, dyes, hot wax or sharp objects.  But state officials have decided that threaders cannot practice their trade without first obtaining an unnecessary and expensive government license.

The Arizona Board of Cosmetology is now requiring skilled threaders to obtain an aesthetician license, which requires at least 600 hours of classroom instruction—not one hour of which teaches or tests threading—and that can cost over $10,000.  But threaders do not need full-blown cosmetology training.  The Board’s irrational application of Arizona’s licensing scheme cuts the bottom rungs off the economic ladder for threaders working in a safe and sanitary occupation. 

The Arizona Constitution protects everyone’s right to earn an honest living without first having to obtain a completely unnecessary license.  That is why a group of five threaders have filed Gutierrez v. Aune, a lawsuit to vindicate their economic liberty, which is the right to earn an honest living free from unreasonable government regulation.

This lawsuit continues the Institute for Justice Arizona Chapter’s ten-year fight to vindicate economic liberty as a fundamental and constitutionally protected right under the Arizona Constitution.


Essential Background


Backgrounder: Arizona Eyebrow Threaders Fight Irrational Licensing Scheme

Client Video

Client Photos

Latest Release: IJ Frees Arizona Eyebrow Threaders from Government Licensing Scheme (October 12, 2011)

Launch Release: Arizona Eyebrow Threaders File Lawsuit Challenging
Licensing Scheme That Blocks Jobs
(June 29, 2011)

Legal Briefs and Decisions

Read the Complaint (filed June 29, 2011)

Case Timeline

Filed Lawsuit: 


June 29, 2011

Court Filed:


Maricopa County Superior Court



none available

 Current Court: Maricopa County Superior Court


Completed: Victory

Additional Releases

Maps, Charts and Facts

none available

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Op-eds, News Articles and Links

Article: Settlement OKs eyebrow threading without license USA TODAY (November 16, 2011)

Article: Arizona Legal Challenge Liberty & Law (August 2011)
Article: State sued over eyebrow threading The Arizona Republic (June 29, 2011)
Video: IJ's Chip Mellor Discusses Government Mandated Licensing With John Stossel (3 of 3); Stossel (March 26, 2010)
Video: Hanging by a thread: defending economic liberty in Texas

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