We examine the motives for regulating hair salons in the UK, but would this really protect the industry or destroy it with red tape?

‚ÄúHer hair “snapped off” and her face “puffed up to twice its size” after she booked in for a straightening and dyeing ahead of her wedding.‚Äù recalled MP David Morris.

This is just one of the many horror stories from unwitting clients using unqualified hairdressers, putting the majority of amazing hairstylists to shame unfairly.¬† Campaigning for better regulation of salons around the UK is MP for Morecambe and Lunesdale, David Morris, who worked as a hairdresser for 28 years before turning to politics. He says: “I was a hairdresser for 28 years I was known as Mr Fixit and believe you me I saw some horror stories,” This terrible incident is not a common¬† occurrence, but should that matter ‚Äìis even one time too many?

The Hairdressing Council are campaigning for registration for all hairdressers and barbers to raise standards and professionalism within the industry.

Hairdressing is one of the most challenging of careers and brings the Government nearly £6billion a year, has 1% of the total UK workforce which is huge and uses dangerous chemicals and sharps.  A recent meeting at Downing Street bought a chance for the Hairdressing Council to discuss this with one of the PM’s Advisors. Consumers conceivably have no idea that hairdressing is completely unregulated.  People wouldn’t use an unlicensed cab, gas fitter or Doctor but are expected to use an unregistered hairdresser. However, the majority of customers using unregulated hair salons experience a good service, so is there a tangible demand for this regulation? Would all hairdressers support this?

The campaign for registration has grown in momentum over the past few years because some hairdressers and barbers understand it’s one of the ways to potentially raise standards and change the underlying perception of the industry.  Fear of burdensome red tape and high costs have been squashed and the Council is working in a  transparent way to involve the entire industry when mandatory registration is introduced. As it stands The Hairdressers Registration (Amendment) Bill has been rejected in parliament by 67 votes to 63.

In order to register under BHC rules, hairdressers must have a City and Guilds or an NVQ level 2 qualifications in hairdressing.

For more information on registration and how to register please visit www.haircouncil.org.uk and remember, please use #getregistered whenever you are on twitter.