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NHBF launches Manifesto 2024 to promote value of hair & beauty industry

By Rebecca Hitchon | 10 May 2024 | Movers & Shakers, News

Nail Salon

The National Hair & Beauty Federation (NHBF) has unveiled its Manifesto 2024 at a parliamentary event.

The Manifesto highlights the vital role the UK hair and beauty sector plays in creating jobs, supporting communities and promoting wellbeing, and sets out recommendations for the next government ahead of a general election.

It was unveiled at an event hosted by Caroline Nokes MP, chair of the Women and Equalities Committee, and attended by NHBF board members, MPs and industry leaders.

The four key themes outlined in the Manifesto 2024 are:

  • The value of the hair and beauty industry to the UK economy and communities: There are 49,000 hair and beauty businesses across the UK, which generated a combined turnover of £4.6 billion in 2023, and consumer spending across the industry as a whole reached £24.5 billion in 2022. With barbers and nail and beauty salons growing but the number of hairdressers in decline, the NHBF calls for VAT reform, business rates reform, restraint on rising wages, positive high street policies and investment, further targeted support on energy and a crackdown on tax-evading businesses.
  • Employment, skills and apprenticeships: The hair and beauty sector is a significant employer of young people, but the affordability of apprentices is proving challenging for small and micro businesses, which make up the majority of the sector. The NHBF calls for more effective redistribution of levy funding, flexi-apprenticeships, joint promotion of the Beauty T Level, modernised careers advice and improved DofE liaison with schools.
  • Health and wellbeing: Recognising how hair and beauty businesses promote solutions to mental health, stress, hair loss and cancer care and support NHS services through complementary therapies, the NHBF calls for further action to encourage social prescribing and achieve a level playing field for the sector as aesthetics legislation is implemented.
  • Sustainability: The NHBF showcases positive eco initiatives in the industry, including contributions to net zero targets, and calls for further green incentives to support businesses.

Kevin Hollinrake, Minister of State in the Department for Business & Trade, says: “The hair and beauty sector makes an important contribution to our high streets, daily lives and local economies. We’ve backed the sector through business rates and energy bill support, increasing the VAT threshold and providing additional funding towards training costs. Working with organisations like the NHBF, we are committed to ensuring that the sector can continue to thrive and grow.”

Rushanara Ali, Shadow Minister (Investment and Small Business), adds: “Labour has an ambitious plan to support small business. We recognise that hair and beauty businesses are a key part of the high street, the economy and make a strong contribution to wellbeing. In line with some of the themes in the Manifesto, we plan to scrap business rates, revitalise our high streets and take skills in a new direction through technical excellence colleges and a new growth and skills levy.”

Caroline Larissey SquareCaroline Larissey, NHBF chief executive, comments: “Our sector is vital to the fabric of communities up and down the country. This Manifesto lays out a clear vision for how government can better support the creativity, entrepreneurship and public service displayed by our members every single day.

“With targeted support, the sector – which offers so much to the economy and local communities, can continue to play an important role in the UK’s economic recovery, youth employment, apprenticeships and the enhancement of people’s wellbeing and sustainability into the future.”

Click here to read the full NHBF Manifesto 2024.