11 January 2016

The National Hairdressers Federation has released statistics on the UK hairdressing, barbering and beauty industry for 2015, accompanied by an infographic showing 10 key facts, providing an  authoritative snapshot of one of the UK’s most important and vibrant industries.  

 93% of the 40,000 hair and beauty businesses in the UK are micro-businesses, employing less than 10 people, although two thirds are even smaller, employing less than 5 people.  As small businesses, 94% generate less than £250,000 in turnover and most turn over less than £100,000 – yet together they contribute a massive £7bn to the UK economy and are the backbone of many high streets.  Indeed, hairdressing businesses are the 5th most popular independent start-up businesses and beauty salons are the 8th most popular. 

 Of the 300,000 people who work in the hair and beauty industry, half are self-employed.  Part-time working is common, especially in beauty.  It’s an industry dominated by females - who account for 9 out of 10 people working in it - and also by young people.  Females aged between 25 and 34 make up a quarter of all the people working in the entire industry.  And it’s also an industry which appeals to apprentices to the extent that hairdressing is consistently in the top 10 most popular apprenticeships. 

NHF president Paul Curry said:

We work in a fantastic industry which makes a vital economic contribution to the UK economy, as well as providing flexible employment for a third of a million people.  No wonder it’s an industry which attracts creative young people into apprenticeships and gives entrepreneurs a great opportunity to start up thriving independent businesses on the high street.      


The NHF 2015 Industry Statistics for Hairdressing, Barbering and Beauty are available free of charge to view or download here.