Editor's comment: changing perceptions of beauty therapy as a career

If there’s one challenge that’s uniting the salon and spa industry at the moment it’s recruitment and retention of good therapists.

The responses to our SOS: Support Our Salons campaign – which has been asking beauty and spa pros to share their biggest setbacks and how they overcame them – have demonstrated that salon owners the length and breadth of the UK are having a far lower response rate to job ads than they used to and finding that those who do apply are just not up to scratch.

Meanwhile, the comments left on our recent guest blog by Sam Pearce, Where have all the good therapists gone, prove the issue strikes a chord with many more of you. 

One reason is the changing perceptions of beauty therapy as a career choice. Where once a large proportion of college leavers were serious about skincare and had dreams of opening their own salons, now employers are reporting that many seem to see beauty as an easy option and aren’t prepared to put in the (often unsociable) hours required to progress. Meanwhile, more people are choosing the option of short courses and freelance working rather than the traditional salon route.

So, what can we as an industry do about it? Our feature in the October issue explores the issue in greater depth to uncover the factors behind the great therapist shortage and the actions we can take to solve it.

We also take a closer look at the evolution of the essential skills needed in the modern salon. Our video feature explains how to get started in this increasingly popular method of marketing, helping you to create professional-looking videos without breaking the bank.

And for the ultimate update of your management skills, check out our “5 essential business insights” feature, which explains why you can’t afford to miss the Salon & Spa Owners’ Convention at Professional beauty North on October 22-23 – from finance to social media, branding to managing staff, the conference will deliver hundreds of ideas and real-life examples that you can take and implement in your own business. See you there!

The October issue is out soon. A digital version can be bought online for £1.49 – or it's just £9.99 for 12 issues. The print edition is just £37 for an annual 12-issue subscription. Make sure you’re always the first to read the news and trends by subscribing online.