The reopening guidance for Wales has now been published.

The reopening guidance for Scotland has now been published.

The reopening guidance for England has now been published.

New guidance for Northern Ireland has not yet been published.




Northern Ireland 

Rules can vary across the country when lockdowns are imposed. If you have specific questions about your particular area, please contact your local authority. You can find your local authority on the government website. You can also email the Department of Health and Social Care with any queries about local lockdowns:

Find out what financial help is available across the four nations.

Rules for mobile stylists and therapists across the four nations. 

Update: 28 September 2020 

In England, individuals are required by law to self-isolate if they test positive or are contacted by NHS Test and Trace. Those breaking the rules will be fined up to a maximum of £10,000 for repeat offenders. 

In addition, it is now an offence for an employer to knowingly permit a worker (including an agency worker) to attend any place other than where the individual is self-isolating. This includes individuals who are required to self-isolate because they live with someone who has tested positive.

This means that if you know your employee has tested positive (or lives with someone who has tested positive), it is now your responsibility to stop the worker from working (unless they can work from home). Any employer who fails to do so will face a fine, starting at £1,000.

There is also an obligation on the worker to tell their employer that they are self-isolating. 

Please note:

Failure to complete a risk assessment which takes account of COVID-19, or completing a risk assessment but failing to put in place sufficient measures to manage the risk of COVID-19, could constitute a breach of health and safety law. The actions the enforcing authority can take include the provision of specific advice to employers to support them to achieve the required standard, through to issuing enforcement notices to help secure improvements. Serious breaches and failure to comply with enforcement notices can constitute a criminal offence, with serious fines and even imprisonment for up to two years. There is also a wider system of enforcement, which includes specific obligations and conditions for licensed premises.




‘Personal care premises’ including hairdressers, salons and close contact services will be allowed to open in step two of the roadmap on 12 April 2021. 

The Department for Business, Enterprise and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has confirmed that this includes mobile businesses. Mobile businesses should follow the guidance for working in other people’s homes as well as the England guidance

Saunas and steam rooms cannot open until step 3 of the roadmap which is due to start no earlier than 17 May, and at least five weeks after step 2. Find out more on the government website. Download a pdf of the full roadmap.

The current situation

England is currently in a national lockdown. This means that all personal care services (including mobile) must close. Personal care services include hair, beauty, tanning and nail salons, tattoo parlours, spas, massage parlours, and body and skin piercing services. 

 Find out more on the government website.

The detailed guidance for closed businesses in England can be read on the government website. Key points for the hair and beauty industry include:

Venues may continue to sell retail goods (such as shampoo or beauty products) online or via click-and-collect.

Those who provide personal care services from a mobile setting including their own home, in other people’s homes and in retail environments (such as a concession in a larger, separate business) must also stop operating.

Personal care services provided for essential medical and health needs which cannot be delayed may continue. For example, treatments for a diagnosed health condition or injury that is currently causing severe pain or mobility issues, or severely impacting quality of life, or for cosmetic treatments associated with cancer treatment. This does not include services provided for general stress relief, relaxation or preventative healthcare purposes. The guidance on safer working should always be followed.

Make-up artists in film and TV production, and on fashion shoots can continue to work, but not in premises required to close.


Reopening FAQs 

The current roadmap for England says that salons and barbershops can reopen on 12 April 2021. This will depend on how well the coronavirus is being contained at that stage. If reopening goes ahead, the following will apply as set out in the updated guidelines for England

Which services can be provided? 

All services can be provided except sauna and steam rooms. Services and treatments must be adapted to avoid long periods of face-to-face working. 

Beard trims can be carried out. Find out more about managing risk on the government website. 

The current roadmap says that sauna and steam rooms can reopen on 17 May 2021. 

What PPE is required? 

Staff must wear a visor and Type II face mask. Find out more on the government website

Clients must wear a face covering. The guidance says that clients must not remove their face covering unless this is essential for a particular treatment. Find out more on the government website. 

Must I self-isolate if I come into contact with someone who tests positive even though I am wearing PPE and following the close contact guidance? 

Yes. The guidance says: 

Individuals contacted via the NHS Test and Trace service, having been in contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, will still need to self- isolate even if wearing a visor/goggles and Type II face mask at work

Can we serve refreshments? 

Hot and cold drinks can be provided to customers in disposable cups. 

Food should not be provided. 

Find more information on the government website.​

Do we still need to support the test and trace programme? 

Yes. The government guidance says: 

In order to ensure that businesses are able to remain open, you must:

  • Display the official NHS QR code poster. Official NHS QR posters can be generated online.
  • Ask every customer or visitor aged 16 and over to check in to your venue or provide their contact details. Individuals can check in quickly and easily using the NHS COVID-19 app to scan in the NHS QR code poster.
  • Have a system in place to ensure that you can collect information from your customers and visitors who do not have a smartphone or do not want to use the NHS COVID-19 app. You must keep this data for 21 days and provide it to NHS Test and Trace, if it is requested. Check what data you need to collect and how it should be managed.” 

Do I have to display a Covid-secure notice? 

Yes. The guidance says: 

We would expect all businesses to demonstrate to their workers and clients that they have properly assessed their risk and taken appropriate measures to mitigate this. You should do this by displaying a notification in a prominent place in your business and on your website, if you have one. 

You can download a notice from the government website. 

What is new in the latest guidance? 

Additional information includes: 

When can training start again?  

Training providers 

Independent and private training providers in the personal care services sector were allowed to reopen from 8 March 2021 to offer practical and hands-on training and assessment. They must follow government guidance for reopening.  

Training in salons and barbershops

Training can take place in salons and barbershops from 8 March 2021 if: 

  • Training cannot be done remotely.
  • Everyone taking part is a staff member.
  • No members of the public are involved. 



1 April 2021: Hair and beauty can open from 12 April 2021 

The Welsh government has announced that all hair and beauty businesses can open from 12 April 2021. (Hair and barbering services only were allowed to open on 15 March 2021.) 

The government’s statement says that this will include mobile. 

The latest Welsh guidance was last updated on 09 April 2021 

Read the Welsh Government's guidance for hairdressing and beauty businesses.




LATEST UPDATE: 5 April 2021

Hairdressers and barbers in Scotland can open on an appointment-only basis from Monday, 5 April 2021, the Scottish Government announced this afternoon

All shops (including salons) can offer click and collect-by-appointment retail services from Monday, 5 April 2021. 

Beauty salons and mobile hair and beauty services cannot open yet. A further announcement is expected on 20 April 2021. 

The Scottish Government has updated its guidance for close contact services.

The following will remain at level 3:

The following islands within Argyll and Bute: Coll, Colonsay, Erraid, Gometra, Iona, Islay, Jura, Mull, Oronsay, Tiree, and Ulva
All islands in Highland, with the exception of Skye

 In these areas only:

Salons and barbershops can open.
Mobile hairdressing and barbering can operate.
Close contact services delivered from a salon, shop or other static site such as a home treatment room can operate. 
All other types of mobile close contact services are not permitted. 

These measures will be kept under regular review. 

Find out more on the Scottish Government website.


Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland is under lockdown.

Close contact businesses must close (including mobile). The current regulations are in place until 1 April 2021, but will be reviewed on 18 March 2021.

 Find out more on the Northern Ireland Executive website.

Please note:

  • Those with a genuine medical need will still be able to access specific hair and beauty services by appointment only, but must provide the appropriate medical records.
  • Make-up artists and hair & beauty practitioners working for film and TV will still be able to operate.
  • Click and collect is banned for non-essential businesses forced to close: this includes hair and beauty businesses.
  • Financial packages for the six-week period are expected to be announced shortly. 



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