Standards for hairdressing premises are set out in Regulation 4 of the Health (Hairdressers) Regulations 1980. You can read the full standards Regulation 4 of the Health (Hairdressers) Regulations 1980(external link).
Summary of the minimum standards for hairdresser premises
Floor, walls, ceiling:
- The floor of the service area where hair is cut or cleaned, and any area of wall or ceiling that is likely to become wet, must be surfaced with a smooth, durable and impervious material.
- All other walls and ceilings must have non-absorbent surfaces that are capable of being easily cleaned.
- Lighting of not less than 300 lux must be provided at all working surfaces adjacent to every place where customers are attended to and where instruments and tools are cleaned.
- In every part of the shop, the overall light intensity must be not less than 100 lux at a point 800 mm above the floor.
- All lighting must be reasonably free from glare and distributed to avoid shadows.
- Ventilation must be adequate to prevent condensation or the formation of excessive moisture on walls and ceilings and to ensure the removal of objectionable odours and fumes.
- In the absence of fully effective natural ventilation, adequate mechanical ventilation shall be provided.
- The floor space shall be sufficient to permit easy access for cleaning.
- In every room where customers are attended to, there must be a floor area of at least 2.3m2 for each customer who can be attended to at the same time as any other customer.
- Service chairs used for haircutting must be at least 1.5 metres apart, measured from centre to centre.
- Where customers awaiting attention are admitted to the service area, an additional 0.9m2 for each such person must be provided for their exclusive use.
- Where separate waiting or reception room s are provided, they must have a floor area of not less than 0.9m2 for every person for whom seating is available, but with a minimum of 4.6m2.
Wash-hand basins/shampoo basins/sinks
- At least one wash hand basin must be provided for every 10 chairs used for hair cutting, with at least one basin being within 6 metres of each cutting chair.
- Every wash hand basin must be supplied with hot and cold water, soap, a nail-brush and clean towels or other approved method of hand drying.
- Where hair is cleaned, sufficient shampoo basins supplied with hot and cold water must be provided and used exclusively for cleaning hair.
- A sufficient number of sinks supplied with hot and cold water or other suitable appliances must be provided for the cleaning of all hairdressing tools and equipment. No such sink can be installed in any staff meal room.
- Only materials or equipment being used or available for use in hairdressing shall be stored in any service area.
- Every shelf, bench, or table where hairdressing tools are tobe placed, must be finished with a smooth, durable and impervious material.
- Every shop must be kept in good repair, clean and free from rubbish, foul odours, vermin and insects.
- No service area shall be in direct communication with any room or place where food is prepared or unwrapped food is stored or held for sale.
- Every shop must be provided with an adequate number of vermin-proof refuse containers, emptied at least daily.
Home based hairdressers (a hairdressing business carried out from a residential dwelling):
- must be set up in a separate room, and
- comply with the requirements set out above.
Mobile hairdressers (hairdressers who travel to customer s home/venue and do not have a fixed hairdressing premises) must comply with the requirements relating to the storage, use, cleaning and disinfection of products, appliances and equipment.
Where tea, coffee, or other beverages are served to customers, every utensil used must be effectively cleaned and then sanitised (by use of a commercial dishwasher, or other approved method), alternatively single-service utensils can be used.