When running a hair salon there are lots of factors to consider but most important is health and safety for both your clients and your employees. Here is a guide to the areas that you need to focus on for health and safety legislation in hairdressing.
There are key regulations that everyone who runs a hairdressing business should comply with. These are:
• Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 – UK legislation detailing the duties of employers regarding health and safety in the workplace. Employers have a duty to protect health, safety and welfare in the workplace.
• Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations (COSHH) 2002 – this is the UK law that requires all employers to ensure that they are sufficiently controlling harmful substances in the workplace.
• Cosmetic Products (Safety) Regulations 2004 – this covers any substance or mixture intended to be placed in contact with the external parts of the human body (including hair)
Carry out a risk assessment together with your employees, identifying the areas of risk within your business and then demonstrate that you have put in place measures to protect clients and staff. It is a good idea to have the risk assessment recorded as a document that all staff members can have access to, a typical format for this might look like this:
Who might be harmed and how
What Precautions are currently in place?
Any further action required?
Hair dye solution
Clients or staff could have a reaction to the ingredients within the solution
Allergy (patch) testing takes place 48 hours before a client’s treatment
Continue to regularly conduct patch testing
All Hairdressing staff
Every 3 months
All employees must receive regular Health & Safety at work training. This covers several key areas including:
· COSHH (Control of Substances Hazardous to Health)
· Fire Safety
· Manual Handling
· Electrical Safety
A Health & Safety Policy is a written statement that sets out how you, as an employer ensures that the workplace is a safe environment to work in. It is a legal requirement that you have this policy displayed in your hairdressing salon.
HSE states that employers must have appropriate first aid provision for their workplace. It is good practice for a hairdressing salon to have a nominated person who, in the event of an accident, will be able to administer first aid. They would need to gain a qualification in first aid at work by attending a first aid training course to be renewed every 3 years.
You should have as a standard practice the regular patch testing of products on clients skin 48 hours before exposure to assess if they might react to a product.
As a salon owner, you have ultimate responsibility for ensuring the safety of your staff in the workplace.
To do this you should put in place the procedures for managing hazardous substances, take precautions to avoid trips and falls, keep your salon clean and well ventilated, have a clear fire safety procedure and ensure that all appliances are well maintained and regularly checked.
Taking these precautions should help to avoid any incidents and make your salon a safe place for you and your employees to work in.
Protectivity is a specialist provider of Hairdressing Insurance. We cover thousands of individuals and small to medium size businesses across the UK each year.