Hair and beauty businesses presented with IOSH guides

Safety and health guides have been distributed to owners of hairdressers, beauty salons and barber shops in part of Northern Ireland.

The guides are presented at the college
The guides are presented at the college

The Safe Start Up guides, produced by the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH), are aimed at people who are setting up a new business or those with an already-established business who want to ensure they are meeting requirements.

They provide generic cross-industry information on safety and health responsibilities, as well as sector-specific details. 

Owners of 38 hair and beauty businesses were recently presented with the relevant guides for their firms at an event at the School of Hairdressing, Beauty Therapy and Early Years at the North West Regional College in Derry, Northern Ireland. Some other guides were given to the college for use by its lecturers.

Paul Rafferty, environmental health officer at Derry City and Strabane District Council, oversaw the distribution of the guides to businesses in the authority’s area.

He said: “I was aware that within the hair and beauty industry there were gaps in people’s knowledge of the law on health and safety. 

“I felt that the IOSH Safe Start Up guides were an excellent way of raising awareness of these issues and we organised the event at the local college. We had 38 business owners, as well as lecturers from the college. The guides were very well received.

“They provide health and safety information that is very specific to the industry that these people are working in. I am confident that they will further help to protect people who work in or visit hairdressers, barbers shops and beauty salons.”

The IOSH guides are also available for other sectors – floristry, building, landscape gardening, catering and home care. There are also guides about business property and working alone.

All publications contain generic safety and health information, such as managing risks and providing training. 

The hairdressing, barber and complementary and beauty therapy guides cover issues such as skin problems and aches and pains, as well as using and storing chemicals (for hairdressers and beauticians) and using tools and equipment (barbers).

Shelley Frost, executive director – policy at IOSH, said: “Start-ups have a challenge at the outset to identify and understand all of the regulations relevant to their business.  

“These guides pull together the health and safety requirements into a single place and, with practical advice, are a great way to help start-ups take the first steps to ensuring their business protects the health and safety of its workforce.”

For more information on the guides, visit


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