9 July 2020

The British Beauty Council, British Association of Beauty Therapy and Cosmetology (BABTAC) and National Hair & Beauty Federation (NHBF) have been working with the Government to support the reopening of the beauty sector. 

They have been informed by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) that beauty salons and beauty professionals in England will be allowed to return to work on Monday 13th July, but no treatments on the face will be permitted

The government have released the following statement

This includes, but is not limited to: 

  • Face waxing, sugaring or threading services
  • Facial treatments
  • Advanced facial technical (electrical or mechanical) 
  • Eyelash treatments
  • Make-up application
  • Dermarolling
  • Dermaplaning
  • Microblading
  • Electrolysis on the face
  • Eyebrow treatments 

Beard trimming will be allowed, but should be limited to ‘simple beard trims, thinning or removing bulk or length which can be done using either clippers or scissors’, and should be carried out from the side or by circling the client avoiding the ‘high-risk zone’. Intricate detailing, outlining or shaving of beards/moustaches that involves prolonged periods near the ‘high-risk zone’ should not be carried out. Treatments on the body such as manicures, pedicures, leg or bikini waxing will be allowed to go ahead. 

These rules apply to all beauty practitioners in England, including those working in salon spaces as well as freelancers, mobile operators, and retail and session makeup artists. 

Prior to this announcement, industry bodies have called out for a risk-based approach which would allow low-risk treatments which do not involve working in the ‘high-risk zone’ for a prolonged period of time to go ahead.  

The latest decision from the government is based on the scientific and medical advice that treatments or services provided in the ‘high risk zone’ directly in front of the client’s face are the most risky in terms of catching or spreading the virus, because splashes and droplets from the nose and mouth are present, even when they can’t be seen. The NHBF, along with BABTAC and the British Beauty Council, is calling for this advice to be published to give businesses a better understanding of how and why these decisions have been made.  

We expect the government guidelines for close contact services to be updated shortly. 

Hilary Hall, chief executive of the National Hair & Beauty Federation says, “We don’t yet have a date for when treatments in the ‘high-risk zone’ will be allowed, and so will continue to push hard for more financial and business support for those in beauty who cannot yet return to work. This is essential to protect people’s livelihoods and our industry’s future. We will keep working closely with government officials, alongside other industry bodies, to get these businesses open as soon as it’s safe to do so.” 

Millie Kendall MBE, British Beauty Council says, “The decision to broaden the scope of available hair and beauty services will allow many more beauty professionals to get back to work, and will also allow customers to benefit from a range of beauty treatments which can be carried out safely for both client and practitioner. It’s a positive step, but we are still only part of the way there. We will keep working closely with governing bodies and supporting everyone in beauty until we are able to achieve the fully-reinvigorated beauty industry we all want.”

Lesley Blair, chair of BABTAC says, “We welcome BEIS and the Government’s commitment and tireless efforts to work with all of us in finding a feasible and safe solution to reopen our beauty businesses. We are however acutely aware of the continued plight of so many businesses specialising in, or solely focused on, the excluded treatments and will continue to seek further solutions, including financial relief and additional scientific and medical evidence, to help all business to return as soon as viably possible.”