Hairdressing, Beauty and Skin Penetration

Hairdressers, beauty salons and skin penetration premises are regulated to minimise the spread of infectious disease between clients and operators from unhygienic procedures and practices.

Skin penetration procedures are regulated by the Public Health Act 2010 and Public Health Regulation 2022. Hairdressers and beauty salons are regulated by the Local Government (General) Regulation 2021 – Schedule 2, Part 2 & 3 Standards for hairdressers and beauty salons. NSW Health has numerous fact sheets, brochures and posters to assist with meeting these requirements.

What is a skin penetration procedure?

Skin penetration procedure is defined under the Public Health Act 2010 to mean any procedure that penetrates the skin or declared by the Public Health Regulation 2022 as being a skin penetration procedure.

This includes but not limited to:

  • tattooing
  • body and ear piercing
  • colonic lavage
  • waxing
  • electrolysis
  • cuticle cutting
  • body modifications eg scarification
  • microdermabrasion
  • blackhead removal using a needle

Skin penetration procedure does not include:

  • any procedure carried out by a health practitioner registered under the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law, or by a person acting under the direction or supervision of a registered health practitioner, in the course of providing a health service, or
  • any procedure declared by the regulations not to be a skin penetration procedure eg laser hair removal.

Council inspections

Council conducts annual inspections of all hairdressers, beauty salons, nail salons and skin penetration premises to ensure they are meeting their legislated requirements.

This inspection will involve the assessment of:

  • cleanliness of premises
  • fit-out and construction of premises
  • provision of facilities and equipment for cleaning, sterilising, hand washing, and storage
  • waste storage and disposal including sharps and contaminated waste
  • current procedures
  • hygiene standards and practices including cleaning, disinfecting and sanitising of equipment
  • records for waste disposal and autoclave if required.

Council uses a standardised checklist during routine inspections.

Council charges the proprietor of the business an inspection fee in accordance with our fees and charges schedule.

Premises fit-out and approval requirements

Hairdressers, beauty salons and skin penetration premises may be required to obtain relevant planning approvals and liquid trade waste approvals from Council prior to carrying out any works.

New premises or alterations to existing premises need to meet the relevant requirements of:

The HRHEC Guidelines for the Construction and Operation of Hairdressing, Beauty and Skin Penetration Premises has been developed to assist in complying with the above requirements.

Mobile operators must write to Council seeking approval to operate. This should demonstrate in detail how you will comply with the legislated requirements in a mobile setting. Mobile operators will be subject to annual inspections like fixed premises.

Any premises conducting a skin penetration procedure must notify council of its existence prior to operating.