SA Hairdressing Acts and Regulations

South Australia has legislation – South Australia Hairdressers Act 1988 (Act) which means for the SA hairdressing industry, a hairdresser (ladies or men’s) or barber must be qualified as per the Act to carry out hairdressing for fee or reward. A person who holds one or more of the following qualifications is not only legal in SA but also recognised (by the Award and the SA industry) as being skilled and experienced to carry out hairdressing for fee or reward:

  • Qualified Through an Apprenticeship
    • Trade Certificate
    • Hairdressers License
    • Registration
  • Qualified Through Institutional
    • Cert III in Hairdressing plus Certificate of Recognition
      Please note: If you have a CERT III in Hairdressing or Barbering and you have a minimum of 10 years of industry experience (having worked a minimum 25hrs/week average) before 1 July 2020 you do not need to provide a Certificate of Recognition but need to provide proof of this employment

The Act carries penalties and an unqualified person who carries on the practice of hairdressing for fee or reward is guilty of an offence. In addition, it is also illegal to employ an unqualified hairdresser to practice hairdressing or barbering and the same penalties can apply.

By law an unqualified hairdresser breaching the Act may face penalties from $1,000 for the first offence to $4,000 for subsequent offences. Please note that those undertaking an apprenticeship in hairdressing or barbering are exempt.

The SAHBA and CBS Approach

The Hair and Beauty Industry Association of South Australia Incorporated (SAHBA) and Consumer and Business Services are collectively taking a proactive approach to addressing unqualified workers by initially supporting individuals to become qualified via the guidance of SAHBA as a preference to apply penalties. To find out how the SAHBA can assist you to get qualified click here.

When CBS is Notified About an Unqualified Worker

If CBS receives a report about an unqualified worker they will:

  1. Refer to the SA Qualified Hairdressers Register
  2. Send a letter to the individual (and salon) detailing their process, potential fines and requirements to become qualified.
  3. Provide details to SAHBA who will follow up with the unqualified worker.

When SAHBA is Notified About an Unqualified Worker

In the case where the CBS advises SAHBA about an unqualified worker, SAHBA will contact the individual to discuss their circumstances and if relevant assist them to determine a plan to become qualified. Alternatively, an unqualified worker can contact SAHBA directly to discuss their options to become qualified. Please note, once SAHBA is aware of someone being unqualified, they are required to keep the CBS informed about the qualification status of that individual.