Clean up your act

We delve in to the importance of choosing a reliable brand for hygiene products in your salon and the benefits this can have.

As salon owners, you take pride in the environment in which you welcome your guests to. This isn’t just inclusive of the general aesthetic of the space, but the cleanliness and hygiene too.

When it comes to keeping on top of the overall level of hygiene in a salon, it’s important that you choose a reputable brand.

Teresa Weller, Owner of Teresa Weller Hair Art, revealed that when investing in cleaning products, she always looks for ones that have exemplary business credentials (ie. heritage and ethics) as well as adhering to sustainable principles, too; the more natural the better.

Post-COVID there was a huge surge in businesses offering hygiene products, but salon owners need tried, tested and trusted products to do the job effectively and efficiently.

Teresa explained that, as any reputable salon owner knows, hygiene should have always been at the top of the business agenda: “COVID-19, of course, placed an intense spotlight on this. Now that it’s continually under the microscope, our clients are reassured by the strict protocols we’ve always had in place to feel safe and secure, especially post-lockdown when tensions were still running high.”

Obviously, scent in a salon is pivotal, so what benefits can a fragrant salon provide for a business? Teresa sees that setting the scene as soon as a client enters the salon can help create the perfect experience: “Personally, I love the smell of spas and find lemongrass and jasmine fragrant and light, as well as relaxing, which is why I think this scent really works in the salon. As well as using electric diffusers, we also have a room spray we use around the salon door throughout the day, so clients walking in get a hit of a calming essence to start their experience on the right foot.”

Being positioned in a customer-facing industry, it is vital to remain clean and hygienic at every opportunity, to reduce the risk of cross contamination or infection.

Tracey-Devine Smith, ASP Global Ambassador, revealed that since the pandemic, she has personally spoken with numerous salons, both in the UK and international markets, who still are carrying on the extreme hygiene routines in order to prevent any further risks after they were enhanced due to the virus: “COVID really highlighted just how closely we work with our wonderful clients and it is important that we remember this, delivering high-class and exceptional service without putting us, our team and our clientele at risk.”

We asked Tracey which key factors salon owners and professionals should look for in a professional cleaning brand, to which she explained that it’s down to what you want to achieve.

Perhaps you are looking for long lasting, eco-friendly products – you would then specifically look into the market for something that fits these two demographics.

“I think a salon scent is something very important, it is something that clients associate with you and your brand and a real point of uniqueness. Having a significant fragrance that is inviting and invigorating is a great starting point – make it memorable and somewhere clients love to go. Clients often comment on the wonderful aura of the products we use and this just shows how much it impacts them.” Added Tracey.

Thomas Hills, Director at TH1 Hair, explained that he and his team have noticed a huge surge in clients wanting to know what their hygiene protocols are, post-COVID: “Luckily for us, any new in-salon protocols that were put in place were never too much of a struggle as, thanks to my OCD, our salon has always been renowned for being a clean, serene space. I have always been meticulous when it comes to ensuring that our sanitation protocols far exceed best practice. I’d go as far as to say it’s a standing joke with some clients, but it’s just in my DNA to be that way. This has definitely worked in our favour since re-opening and means we have been well-placed to respond to any of our clients anxieties, as some were definitely more worried than others about returning to normal life.

“As salon owners, it’s always important to choose a reputable partner in any area of your business, as it’s a reflection of you and your choices as a business owner. If any area of your salon is let down by partnerships that are obvious to your clients, it can have a hugely detrimental effect. Everything needs to appear seamless, even if it’s crazy behind the scenes.”

Hygiene in the salon is critical for the wellbeing of your team and clients, as it’s important to create a healthy and safe working environment for all. The practice of health and safety awareness should naturally become part of your everyday working life, so you need products that work, and do what they say on the tin.

Esther van der Veken from Tommy’s Hair Company explained that although the pandemic has settled and restrictions are much more flexible, we are still seeing salons being extra cautious and taking care with their hygiene protocols more than ever before.

Esther said: “Within our salons we have always been very strict when it comes to hygiene and cleaning protocols, it is something we instilled in our staff and brand since we began 20 years ago and is just as important now. For salons up and down the country, we understand that a team member catching COVID can result in other team members potentially testing positive, which could end up in a salon closing and isolating for a period of time, equalling a loss of earnings and revenue. In turn, salons are being as cautious as ever to prevent this happening and this is why their hygiene protocols are so important.

“Choosing a brand to use as your cleaning, fogging and hygiene range can be difficult, however it is important that it is reliable, available to purchase and, of course, that it works! We have always been very loyal to brands we have used over the years, making sure they do what we need them to do and they provide us with a clean and non-toxic environment. However, during COVID, we put in a lot more research and focused our energy on finding longer lasting solutions that protected the health of our teams and clients as well as rid the salons of further toxic particles. We looked outside the general industry and consumer markets, which helped us opt more for a corporate regime and products.”

As a salon owner, it’s very important to align your brand with other reputable ones. This comes down to decisions that may seem insignificant such as hygiene products you use, however this adds to the big picture of your salon.

Simon Hill, Owner of SESH Hairdressing, said: “Choosing a reliable and reputable brand shows to your clients that you care and put their health and safety above all else. When it comes to hygiene, you need to be 100% sure that your salon is completely sanitised, free of germs and bacteria. Choosing a reliable brand gives you that peace of mind.”

It’s so important for salon owners and professionals to look for cleaning brands that disinfect. In a salon, a lot of treatments require skin-to-skin contact and many tools are used on clients such as scissors and combs.

David Nicolson, Director of Rainbow Room International’s Royal Exchange Square Salon said: “Without disinfecting our tools and equipment and ensuring they are sanitary, this can make the chances of infection high. Barbicide is a product that we use in the salon every night to soak tools such as scissors and combs but we also ensure all stylists have their own trolley and equipment, ensuring they sanitise between each client too. We also use Dettol and anti-bacterial wipes within the salon, which are key products to disinfect and get rid of any germs.”

Cleanliness should be thought about as early on as during the design process. Prior to beginning the building and interior, you need to consider how easy it will be to keep clean, so, Rachel Gribble, Salon System Educator and Nail Expert, said: “It’s a good idea to keep the design modern and simple, with easy to clean surfaces and floors.”

Michelle Chadwick, Senior Brand Manager at Zoflora, agrees that hygiene considerations have certainly heightened post-pandemic. Now more than ever, it is crucial to ensure salons are a hygienic environment for both colleagues and customers.

Using beautifully fragranced cleaning products, such as Zoflora, can instantly energise and uplift spaces as well as kill 99.9% of viruses and bacteria.

“With plenty of products available, it is important for business owners to understand which cleaning products can deliver on value for money and effectiveness – these are two key elements salon owners should be looking at. Looking at brands which offer concentrated cleaning products – such as Zoflora’s Concentrated Disinfectant – is a good place to start. Concentrates are designed to be diluted at the point of use and offer great value for money. For example, Zoflora Concentrated Disinfectant dilutes in water to make 40 times the amount of full-strength disinfectant.” Said Michelle.

With consumer research revealing 72% of people are interested in fragrance for general wellness benefits, as well as creating a relaxing, comforting, and happy mood*. Using beautifully fragranced disinfectants can play a hugely important role in salons, which are places of relaxation for customers.

Michelle added: “Fragrance has the power to unwind and soothe clients, providing them with a welcome escape for the few hours that they spend in a salon, as well as creating a positive association with the salon itself to hopefully see them return. Zoflora has a range of over 30 perfumer-developed fragrances to choose from, whether your preference is fresh, floral or fruity, there is something for all tastes and spaces.”

Keeping on top of salon hygiene is a serious practice to ensure that your salon complies with the necessary regulations, particularly after the importance of this was heightened during the pandemic. Not only this but optimum cleanliness and using a reliable brand ensures that your business looks more appealing but it will work in line with client retention rates.

*IFF – Science of Wellness research, 2022