Hairdressers Journal
Hairdressers Journal



The hair industry is being severely affected by the Coronavirus pandemic and the National Hair & Beauty Federation’s (NHBF) new report found turnover fell by 45% in 2020 compared to 2019.

The report revealed salon capacity fell to 70% of what it was before the pandemic started due to social distancing restrictions. Hair businesses also lost on average two hours of appointment time per stylist per day.

The average cash loss to a hair business in 2020 was £17,000 with those over the VAT threshold taking an even bigger hit. One in 10 hair businesses did not return any income or dividend to their salon owners or managers and full-time employment was down by 21% compared to 2019 figures.

The NHBF states there are many hair and beauty businesses which are acutely vulnerable to failure in the next 12 months, especially as 2021 is expected to be just as tough as 2020. Without further support from the UK Government most expect to survive two-to-three months (from January 2021) if the Coronavirus lockdown continues.

The report also found the COVID-19 crisis is having a disproportionate impact on women and those living in deprived communities. This is significant because 82% of hair and beauty business owners and 88% of the hair and beauty workforce are female.

There is also a higher proportion of personal care businesses than any other sector in the most deprived areas of the UK with closure of these places posing a risk to those in the local community who are most likely to be employed at these salons.

Reducing VAT to 5% would add £16,000 to the average VAT-registered business closing the cash gap by a third, according to the report. This would also reduce the proportion of businesses not returning anything to their salon owners or managers.

Talking about the NHBF’s findings chief executive Richard Lambert said: “While the future could be bleak for the personal care sector, intervention now and following reopening will have a life-changing positive effect.

There’s nothing coming in, but the overheads still have to be paid. When we are closed, we are closed. We can’t diversify into takeaways and online sales. The personal care sector is calling for a specific grant to support businesses through the immediate cashflow crisis in line with similar funds that have been afforded to many other sectors, including the arts, hospitality, leisure and the aeronautical industry.”

He added: “We need support after reopening to keep cash in these businesses so they can recover. The bigger businesses have been hit the hardest and are now the most vulnerable to failure. A targeted VAT cut to 5% would allow them to rebuild, invest in staff and apprentices and once again be at the heart of their high streets and communities. This move will pay for itself, so it’s a cost-effective solution for the UK Government.”

The Save Our Salons Campaign is also fighting for VAT to be cut to 5%. Co-founder Hellen Ward said: “One letter to your local MP could save someone’s business and help protect our industry.”

The Hair the Love 2021 exclusive live event, hosted by L’Oréal Professional Products and Hairdressers Journal International, brought the industry together to celebrate what it means to be a hairdresser and the essential role that hairdressing plays in everyone’s lives.

The event, which was streamed live on HJ’s Facebook page, was hosted by HJ’s executive director Jayne Lewis- Orr and L’Oréal Professional Products Division UK & Ireland managing director Béatrice Dautzenberg.

The panel featured three members of the hairdressing industry – Sally Brooks at Brooks & Brooks, Josh Miller at Charlie Miller Hairdressing, Stewart Roberts at Haircuts4Homeless as well as beauty journalist Sonia Haria.

As part of the campaign fashion designer Gareth Pugh has created a ‘My Hair Belongs to...’ design (pictured above) that can be shared on social media with the hashtag #HairTheLove2021. The design is free to download and can be used to celebrate the hairdressing industry with your clients and colleagues.

Plus, if you post with the hashtag #HairTheLove2021, L’Oréal Professional Products will donate to the Hair and Beauty Charity and Haircuts4Homeless.

John Paul Mitchell Systems (JPMS) has named model Winnie Harlow as Paul Mitchell’s new global ambassador.

Winnie features in Paul Mitchell’s 2021 campaign, shot by photographer Micaiah Carter, to celebrate the power of self-expression through hair.

“Expressing myself through hair is a fun experience that represents different stages in my life.

I get to create new personas, personalities and characters with every look — from super sexy with long, straight hair to a chilled-out feel with curly waves and a little tomboy with a short cut,” says Winnie.

She adds: “Partnering with an iconic brand like Paul Mitchell is close to my heart. My mum was a hairdresser and growing up I loved seeing her transform a client’s hair, put a smile on their face and leave them happy and ready to rule the world.”

JPMS has also named Winnie’s hairstylist, César DeLeön Ramirêz, a brand ambassador.

The new campaign will feature a variety of looks César has created for Winnie.

Redken has unveiled the Advocate Network – a collective of new influential colourists and stylists from the UK and Ireland. The team have a combined mission to empower professionals through digital education and social media.

The Redken Advocate Network aims to engage and inspire the professional community by sharing trends, techniques, social expertise and education. It uses a pro-to-pro network for an authentic and conversational approach to engage all hair fanatics.

The network features a selection of salon and independent stylists identified as leading authentic brand social super fans in 2020. The members of the network who are pictured include: Tia Lambourn, Harriet Muldoon, Lucy Kew and Samantha Cusick.

Vocational Training Charitable Trust’s (VTCT) grant and bursary programme has supported over 850 learners in disadvantaged areas during the past academic year (2019/20).

The grant and bursary programme, designed by the VTCT board of trustees in November 2019, selected 15 training providers to receive a grant of £5,000 each. The grants helped to support learners who were disadvantaged and would not otherwise have had the means to study.

The VTCT Annual Impact Report, focused on the work of training providers, employers and learners during COVID-19 and covered the positive work of the programme which helped over 850 learners complete their vocational qualifications despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

A representative from one of the training providers to be awarded a bursary said: “Cardiff and Vale College has the highest level of deprivation in Wales out of all other colleges with 30% of learners living in poverty.

Attending an inner-city college and starting a new course creates barriers for some of our hardest to reach learners.”

Former chair of VTCT’s board of trustees, Dr Chris Laws added: “We’re keen to ensure our resources are used to support learners from all backgrounds that may face challenges in gaining access to education.”

Tony Rizzo, founder of Alternative Hair, has announced the appointment of Allan Hogg as executive vice president.

With the prospect of a second virtual Alternative Hair Show this year, Allan will support Tony on sponsorship and event organisation, as well as liaising with artistic teams and investigating new ways to fundraise in the current environment.

Allan Hogg has a long relationship with Alternative Hair going back to the first show in 1983. Since 2013 he has worked with Tony Rizzo as vice president of Alternative Hair helping with the organisation of the International Visionary Award as a competition adjudicator, both at the initial judging stage and the final judging, which is normally held backstage on the night of the event.

This year’s Alternative Hair Show will take place on Sunday 10 October.

Matrix hosted its M-Day and Synergy 2021 event on 1 and 2 March to bring hairdressers together and celebrate the Matrix rebrand with hairdressing education.

M-Day introduced attendees to the rebrand and Matrix’s M-Team of award-winning artists, social stars, celebrity stylists and industry icons from all around the world.

On day two of the global event, Synergy offered attendees the chance to tune into a series of sessions on the Think Stage, Believe Stage, Dream Stage and Dare Stage, covering multiple educational angles from 30 global artists, ambassadors and surprise guests.

Attendees could watch 36 different sessions covering business skills, social media and creative skills, as well as collections.

Matrix’s Synergy Playground connected guests with Matrix artists, including Desmond Murray, Alexandra Kress, Alfredo Lewis, Michelle O’Connor, Danielle Keasling, Leah Sterk and Philip Wolff.

Salon Supplies has unveiled its virtual furniture showroom, which allows you to take a virtual tour of what’s on offer from the UK hairdressing industry wholesaler. Salon Supplies experienced substantial growth in its furniture and online sales in 2020 so the team worked hard behind the scenes to launch its first virtual furniture showroom tour.

Salon Supplies said: “We want to support the hairdressing industry in the best way we can. The interactive multi-branded furniture showroom allows you to measure and shop all from the comfort and safety of your own home. This means we can give access nationally, 24 hours a day and seven days a week so you can choose the time that works best for you.”

New pricing structures will be crucial for profitability in hair salons post-lockdown, according to new research by colour management app Vish.

The company’s data has shown hair salons will need to pass on the additional colour costs for longer regrowth and home colour correction directly to clients to maintain profits. Vish also warns that raising prices wholesale is not the answer.

The research which was carried out after the first lockdown revealed there was an average increase of 27% colour used per service when hair salons reopened. Vish CEO Joshua Howard warned: “Using your pre-crisis pricing structure in a post-crisis environment is going to cost you. Colour costs per service could be double or more. Our data shows that unit costs for a half head of highlights are typically around £6.25. If you are dealing with longer regrowth or colour correction, costs could be as high as £17.14 per service. Upping prices to compensate could frighten clients away, but if you add just the additional colour costs, experience of post-lockdown in 2020 shows they will be much more understanding.”

Vish is designed to work out the costs of every gram of colour used and automatically send the information to the front desk so the burden of adding any extra charges is taken out of the stylists’ hands.

Salon software brand Zenoti has touchless technology solutions to provide a safer experience for salon clients and employees.

Zenoti’s touchless and mobile solutions serve all aspects of client engagement with easy appointment scheduling, self-check-ins, automatic payments and more.

The mobile booking and intake forms avoid contact with commonly touched surfaces – from pens to clipboards – and eliminate unnecessary interaction with front desk staff during check-in. Plus, geofencing technology allows clients to check-in automatically when they walk in through the doors and proceed straight to the salon chair, reducing wait times in the reception area.

Clients can opt to receive free two-way text messaging, which allows them to wait in their vehicles or outside until their hairdresser is ready to begin the appointment.

This allows clients to maintain social distancing during the check-in process.

The convenience of Zenoti’s Uber-like digital experience allows clients to breeze through checkout without contacting frequently touched POS equipment or worrying about maintaining social distancing at the front-desk.

“Zenoti remains committed to helping businesses find their greatness and achieve better business performance, while enabling our industry to set new standards for the consumer experience,” said Sudheer Koneru, CEO at Zenoti.

This article appears in the March 2021 Issue of Hairdressers Journal

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This article appears in the March 2021 Issue of Hairdressers Journal