Editor's comment: inclusivity in salons and spas

Making the salon or spa as inclusive an environment as possible is a high priority for most owners. The link between physical and emotional wellbeing is well documented and most therapists entering the industry do so with a desire to make clients feel, as well as look, great.

In spite of this, many salons are still discriminating against minority client groups, without intending to and often without even being aware they may have caused offence. Sometimes, when faced with an unfamiliar client, our contraindication training kicks in and the temptation can be to outright refuse treatments rather than adapting them, as recent cases of cancer patients in spas have highlighted.

But when it comes to issues surrounding gender, particularly clients who don’t identify as the gender they were born with, it’s often the language therapists use and the awkwardness or anxiety they may feel that can create barriers. Our feature on treating transgender clients in the October issue of Professional Beauty explores these issues, offering advice from salon clients who have been through their own transition about challenges they face and how to make them feel welcome.

While you may already be making every effort to welcome clients of all backgrounds into your business, those efforts could well be in vain if you’re falling at the first hurdle – your business’s website – and putting off clients before they even reach your door. From poor navigation and out-of-date contact details, to misleading images, our guide to the top 10 website mistakes salons and spas make (in the October issue) offers a handy checklist of “don’ts”. There’s also plenty of expert advice on how to fix any slip-ups you may have already made, so you can be sure your business is visible and inviting to all client groups.

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