As a self-employed hairdresser, you’re open to risks in your everyday work. Whether you accidentally burn a customer or your usual treatment products damage their hair – this is where insurance comes in. So what insurance does a self-employed hairdresser need? This article will look at the insurance available to protect yourself and your business.

We’ll cover:

  • Public liability insurance
  • Employer’s liability insurance
  • Property insurance
  • Personal accident and sickness insurance
  • Legal expenses insurance

Public liability insurance

What is public liability insurance?

Public liability protects you in case a member of the public claims against you or your business. A public liability insurance policy covers you if you injure, harm (either physically or emotionally) or damage their property in an accident.

Public liability insurance isn’t a legal requirement. But you’ll be working with the public every day so it’s wise to have it in case of an accident. For example, an accident could happen – a customer gets a slight burn from a styling tool, tripping on a wire, or slipping on hair left on the floor and sustaining a back injury. Having public liability insurance would protect you in this case.

If you attend industry events, such as wedding shows or hairdressing expos you need to have a valid public liability insurance policy to attend.

What does public liability insurance include?

This insurance covers you if a customer is at your salon. It also protects you when working in other people’s homes (if you offer mobile hairdressing services). It also covers any incidents where you may accidentally harm a customer, such as when using products to style or dry their hair or products you sold to them.

The insurance covers any legal fees and compensation for the person who claimed against you. Compensation can often be a hefty sum and could impact your small business if you don’t have insurance or your insurance doesn’t cover it.

Public liability insurance ultimately protects the future of your business, in case a customer claims against you.

Employer’s liability insurance

This is very similar to public liability insurance, except it protects your business if an employee makes a claim. 

You might be a one-person operation, but you might take on an extra stylist for special events or busy periods like weddings. But if you do, you need to make sure you have the right cover in place when they’re working with you. Even if you employ someone casually, it’s a legal requirement to have this insurance in place. There are severe penalties if you are found to employ someone without this protection.

This insurance will cover if the employee claims that you, or the work you had them carry out are responsible for them becoming injured or ill while working for you. Again, compensation could be costly, even a minor injury, so protect your business.

Property insurance

Property insurance is another one for hairdressers to consider. It covers your styling tools, equipment, materials and other property against accidental damage or theft. 

If your salon is a registered business premises, this policy insures your property. Some policies also protect your property from damage or theft from your vehicle if you’re a mobile hairdresser. If you work out and about, we recommend researching policies that suit this working arrangement.

Personal accident and sickness insurance

As a self-employed person, what happens if you are unable to work? This is where personal accident and sickness cover comes in. 

This insurance is for if you’re not able to work for a period due to illness or injury. The payout on this will usually be a weekly sum to cover bills and living expenses while you recover. If you’re unable to return to work at all, then you’ll likely receive a lump sum payment.

If you find yourself involved in a legal battle for your business, this insurance will cover the fees associated with a court case. The insurer will also be able to support you with several types of legal action you might find yourself up against, including: 

  • Disputes with neighbours or neighbouring businesses at your premises
  • Criminal charges or hearings
  • Employment tribunals, if you employed someone on a temporary or fixed basis
  • Tax inquiries
  • VAT inspections
  • Professional negligence enquiries

What insurance should self-employed hairdressers prioritise?

The most important policy for hairdressers is public liability insurance. You’ll be dealing with the public day in and day out so you need to protect yourself. It covers you in case of any accidents like burns from a hair straightener, or a slight spill of shampoo on the ground causing a slip. 

Next, look at property insurance. Your kit will include lots of items and the value of those items can add up, so the insurance will save you replacing them out of your own pocket.

It’s worth noting that you’ll be able to find specialist hairdresser insurance that should cover a variety of these things in one policy. This could simplify things and save you from looking for several separate insurance deals.

To bring five-star Trustpilot-rated cover to small businesses like yours, we’ve partnered with insurance provider Superscript. Click here to get a quote in minutes.

Save time on financial admin with Countingup

Bookkeeping tasks can take up a lot of your time when you’re self-employed. But Countingup helps to make running your business easier. 

Think bookkeeping and accounting, financial management and tax prep all in one easy-to-use app. It automates time-consuming admin so that you can focus on running your business. With instant invoicing, automatic expense categorisation and cash flow insights, you can confidently keep on top of your business finances every day. Find out more here.