How the Beauty Backed Trust is supporting our industry

Roberta Schroeder
·2-min read
Photo credit: Tristan Fewings
Photo credit: Tristan Fewings

It goes without saying that the past year has been a test for businesses across the country – and the health and beauty sectors have been hit especially hard.

The beauty industry contributes £28 billion to the UK economy, yet when lockdowns resulted in doors being shuttered for months on end, government support was seriously lacking. As The Telegraph reports, 4,578 salons have since permanently closed.

In the UK, 88 per cent of the beauty industry workforce are female, with 82 per cent of businesses being owned by women. Research by the British Beauty Council found that around 60 per cent of member salons have run out of cash reserves needed to keep their doors open through lockdown, and have been forced to use their personal savings to keep businesses afloat.

This is where the Beauty Backed comes in. In August of last year, founder and chair Caroline Hirons launched the campaign to provide vital support to beauty industry workers most at risk. She raised more than £600,00 and garnered 30,000 signatures on a petition that, alongside a letter to Prime Minister Boris Johnston, helped ensure the sector could reopen as soon as possible.

Now, ahead of the planned reopening on 12 April, Hirons has opened the Beauty Backed Trust to ensure the funds raised reach everyone most in need, supported by a team of trustees including Alexandra Forbes, Dija Ayodele, Lesley Blair and Lisa Potter Dixon.

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The Trust exists to support everyone in the industry, from freelance make-up artists to salon owners, manicurists and facialists, and can provide PPE, tools and financial support.

“Over the last year, we have witnessed much of our industry struggle to stay open and viable. As a sector representing an 88 per cent female workforce, with 82 per cent of business owners as women, we need to stand together and make a change,” says Hirons.

“We see ourselves in our colleagues and as past and present beauty business owners, we understand the hardships Covid-19 has created alongside the repeated delays in re-opening our sector and lack of individual sectoral funding support. As trustees we are truly passionate about the beauty industry and are delighted to be instrumental in taking Beauty Backed from a movement to a trust. Our initial goal is to support as many beauty professionals as possible to get back to work," she adds.

If you are a beauty professional that would like to apply for support, you can do so at beautybacked.com

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