(last updated August 2020)
The possibility of mandatory registration
The Hairdressers (Registration) Act created the Hairdressing Council in the mid-1960s and has enabled hairdressers who meet the entry requirements to register with the Council if they want to. Research shows that an increasing number of hairdressers are choosing to be registered. The Council has been strongly pushing for compulsory registration of all hairdressers and it is possible that this might occur in the future.
The range of hair products for home use has grown larger and ever more sophisticated and to compete" many salons have had to raise their own standards and look for other ways to attract customers. A growing number of salons now offer a whole range of nail and beauty treatments alongside hairstyling.
Financial performance of the sector
The hairdressing sector benefited from a more prosperous economic climate during much of the 2000s because people had more money to spend on non-essentials. Competition in this sector stayed strong though holding prices down at the lower end of the market in particular. Although the late 2000s saw many people tighten their belts demand for hairdressing remained reasonably strong. As the economic downturn continued into the 2010s the hairdressing sector proved to be quite resilient although customers did cut back on expensive treatments and waited longer between appointments and total spending in hairdressing and beauty salons stagnated as a result. With consumer confidence returning as the economy began to recover from 2013 spending on hair and beauty began to increase again. 2015 and 2016 were good years for the hairdressing sector - although treatment prices remained low customers visited a salon more often. This meant an overall increase in the average customer spend. Nevertheless customers are still price sensitive and many use the internet to check out special offers and promotions instead of staying loyal to one salon or stylist.
Keeping up to date with developments
It's important to keep up with the latest fashions and styles in the industry. Joining a trade association is an excellent way of keeping up with new developments.
The National Hairdressers' Federation (NHF) represents the interests of the industry. Members receive the official NHF journal Salon Focus as well as a range of other benefits. The NHF also publishes a range of start-up guides for hair salons and barbers. Visit the NHF website for more information.
Registered hairdressers receive the monthly Hairdresser magazine and back issues are available on the Hairdressing Council website.
Habia - the standards setting body for the hairdressing and beauty industries - publishes lots of useful information including news training opportunities " statistics and industry reports. Visit the Habia website for more information.
Trade journals such as Hairdressers Journal can help you to keep up to date with developments and trends in the sector. The Hairdressers Journal Interactive website includes subscription details as well as industry news and details of industry events to help you keep up to date with developments and fashion trends in the industry.